Jennifer Tvrdy graduated from Creighton University in 2005 with her Doctorate in Occupational Therapy. She has worked in various outpatient pediatric therapy settings with a focus on sensory integration prior to opening Therapy Junction. She is extremely passionate about children, development, and improving overall quality of life. Her love for the water inspired her to open Therapy Junction in 2004. She witnessed the profound impact this therapeutic medium offered children with a wide range of abilities and diagnoses through her private practice. She has instructed and facilitated the development of pediatric aquatic therapy courses for Aquatic Therapy University. She is currently a Core Specialist for Masgutova Neurosensory Reflex Integration (MNRI) and instructor of Aqua Reflex Integration for the Svetlana Masgutova Educational Institute (SMEI). She is dedicated to her practice and the extension of knowledge for the betterment of healthcare worldwide.
Sarah received her Master’s degree in Occupational Therapy from St. Catherine University in 2010. Prior to coming to Therapy Junction, Sarah gained experience in both pediatric and adult outpatient settings. She is certified in The Listening Program®, use of Physical Agents of Modalities (PAMS) and has attended courses related to Craniosacral therapy, vision processing and therapy, yoga & mindfulness, and Kinesio taping. Sarah is currently pursuing certification in the Masgutova Neurosensorimotor Reflex Integration (MNRI) Method and has completed the following MNRI courses Dynamic and Postural reflexes, IPET Dynamic and Postural Reflexes, Archetype Movement Integration, Proprioceptive and Cognitive Integration, Lifelong Reflex Integration, Neurostructural reflex Integration, Aquatic Reflex Integration, Birth and Post Birth Reflex Integration, Breathing, and PTSD
Lindsay Williamson, OTR/L
Lindsay received her Master’s of Science in Occupational Therapy at the University of Wisconsin - Madison. She has always had a passion working with kids and adolescents of all different abilities within various settings. Prior to Therapy Junction, Lindsay worked for part of a school year in as an OT. She has her background in recreational therapy and working at a summer treatment camp for kids with behavioral and social difficulties. Lindsay has special training in Musgutova Neuro-sensory-motor Reflex Integration, Executive Dysfunction, and Sensory and Motor Processing for Postural Control. Her clinical interests are in mental health and coping skills, early development and the impact of reflexes, core stability and aquatics.
Melissa Degen, OTR/L
Melissa received a Master’s degree in Occupational Therapy from the University of Minnesota. She has been a member of the Therapy Junction team since December, 2015. Melissa’s previous experience includes working in pediatric settings with an emphasis on treatment of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders, as well as experience working in an adult mental health setting. She is passionate about working with children of all ages and stages of development. She has training in Masgutova Neurosensory Reflex Integration (MNRI), SOS Approach to Feeding, Astronaut Training (sound-activated vestibular-visual protocol), and MORE: Integrating the Mouth with Sensory and Postural Functions.
Jennifer Annunziata, OTR/L
Jenny has worked in the outpatient pediatric setting for 8 years. Her favorite part is getting to laugh, cry, and celebrate with her families while embarking on the therapy journey. The progress children make inspires and motivates her both in her personal and professional life. Jenny is trained in sensory integration and self regulation, auditory interventions (therapeutic listening, the listening program, and integrated listening systems), interactive metronome, Masgutova Neurosensory Reflex Integration (MNRI), Rhythmic Movement Training (RMT) Reflex Integration, handwriting without tears, cranial sacral therapy, and sensorimotor approach to regulation and developmental trauma.
Hi! My name is Brionna Heppner. I was born and raised in Fargo, ND. I have lived in Fargo my entire life, and ready for a change! I went to Concordia College in Moorhead, MN for a Bachelors degree in Communication. I attended the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks, ND for my Masters degree in Occupational Therapy.
I have experience with the following interventions: Astronaut Training, Zones of Regulation, Therapeutic Listening, Sequential Oral Sensory (SOS) Feeding Approach, Sensory Integration
I have been working in a pediatric outpatient setting for 2 ½ years, and love observing a child’s progress over time, and seeing a child’s response to various interventions strategies. I believe my job as a pediatric OT is the most rewarding job ever! My hobbies outside of work include: biking, camping, spending time with family, going to the lake, playing volleyball, snowboarding, and I love dogs! (golden retrievers especially).
Amy received her master’s degree in speech-language pathology from St. Cloud State University in 2004. Since then, she has provided services to countless children with communication disorders. Amy’s experience and areas of interest include stuttering, cluttering, autism spectrum disorders, Fragile X Syndrome, Down Syndrome and childhood apraxia of speech. She has attended specialized trainings on the Lidcombe Program for Early Stuttering Intervention, the DIR/Floortime® approach and early intervention for childhood apraxia of speech.
Kristan received a master’s degree in communication disorders from St. Cloud State University in 2004. She joined the Therapy Junction team in September of 2013. She has been working with the pediatric and adolescent population in the rehab setting for the last seven years. Kristan enjoys working with a variety of children and their families. She takes a special interest in feeding therapy, social language skills, early language development, articulation therapy, apraxia of speech, autism spectrum disorders, Down Syndrome, Fragile X Syndrome, and Masgutova Neuro-Sensory-Motor Reflex Integration (MNRI). Kristan has taken courses specifically in MNRI including oral-facial reflex integration I & II.
Kelly Gill, MS, CCC-SLP
Kelly received a master’s degree in Communication Disorders and a certificate in Autism Spectrum Disorders from MSU-Mankato in 2012. She joined the Therapy Junction team in 2015. She has been working with the pediatric population her entire career. She has attended specialized training in Masgutova Neuro-Sensory-Motor Reflex Integration (MNRI) and enjoys using these skills to assess the overall development of a child and using these key movements to build a solid foundation for growth and development. She enjoys working with a diverse population of children with challenges. When not at work, Kelly enjoys spending time with her husband and son. She likes being outdoors, spending time at the cabin, and learning about health and wellness.
Trista Blade, MS, CCC-SLP
Trista received her masters degree in Speech-Language Pathology in 2012. She joined the Therapy Junction team in December of 2015. Trista has training in Masgutova Neuro-Sensory Reflex Integration (MNRI), Prompts for Restructuring Oral Muscular Phonetic Targets (PROMPT), and augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). She has previous experience working with children who have mental health disorders. Trista’s clinical passion is childhood apraxia of speech and motor speech disorders.
Willow is a purebred yellow Labrador retriever who lives with one of Therapy Junction’s speech therapists, Amy Holsten. She was born in December of 2012 and began training to become a therapy dog when she was just 12 weeks old. In August, 2014, she passed her Pet Partner’s test and became registered as an official therapy dog! Since beginning her work, Willow has won the hearts of the children, families and employees of Therapy Junction. She provides limitless growth opportunities for the clients she works with. Whether working on fine motor skills by being fed a treat with tongs, cuddling with her buddies during reflex integration or being the “patient” while working on imaginary play with the vet kit, Willow helps children make progress towards their individual goals in a calming and motivating delivery. Willow loves playing fetch, especially with tennis balls! She also loves cuddling, swimming, chewing on bones and playing with her best friend, Denver. Follow her adventures on her community.
Follow her adventures on her community Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Willow-Talktome/215654081916943
Denver, a purebred golden retriever, is Therapy Junction's dashing gentle giant! He is 80 pounds of sweet, calm and playful! Denver has been a therapy dog since 2015. He loves to sleep, lay on bean bags and play fetch with his friends. Follow his adventures on his community Facebook page:
Meet Wrenley! She is our newest therapy dog-in training with plans to take her therapy dog test fall of 2016. In the mean time, Wren spends her time training, playing and spending one day per week getting used to spending time at Therapy Junction. She is Denver's younger sister, but she has more spunk and energy than her big brother! We are very excited for her to continue growing her skills and gaining confidence as a new therapy dog!