OUR SPOKANE TEAM
We’d be nothing without our team of amazing people. Get to know us a little bit better below…
Jim Matthews holds four Bachelor’s degrees from the University of California, Irvine and two Masters degrees in Educational Psychology and School Psychology from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, CA. Jim is also a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) and Nationally Certified School Psychologist (NCSP). Throughout his two decades of working in ABA, he has worked with thousands of children and families both in schools and in private practice. Jim lives in Spokane WA. Professionally, Jim has dedicated his life to helping all people with disabilities. He is deeply passionate about helping people who are most in need during the time when they most need it. He feels strongly that ABA can confer meaningful lifelong skills that both enrich and enhance the quality of life for individuals with disabilities.
Chelsea Riley earned her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Women’s Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA). She worked in the field of behavior analysis while employed through agencies in Wisconsin, Washington, and Idaho before obtaining her Master’s degree in Special Education with an emphasis in Functional Analysis from Gonzaga University in 2016. She is currently in pursuit of her PhD in Psychology with an emphasis in Behavior Analysis. Chelsea lives in Spokane Valley with her husband, two dogs, and their cat. Professionally, Chelsea has dedicated her time and effort with families and individuals with disabilities who are in need of support and guidance. She is excited to further expand upon research in this area as well as act as a voice for those who do not have one within this unique community.
Taysia LeFaber earned her undergraduate degree from Washington State University (Go Cougs!) and her masters degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from Capella University. She loves working as a BCBA for families at SOAR. Working with kids and seeing the progress that they make through treatment of behavior is an extremely rewarding passion. She was born and raised in Spokane, Washington where she currently resides with her partner Eric and their two dogs, Benjamin and Luke. Taysia hopes to continue to serve children and families in the community she grew up in through Applied Behavior Analysis.
Andrea Lyman holds a Bachelor’s degree from Eastern Washington University in Psychology and a Masters degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from Whitworth University. Andrea lives in Spokane with her husband and has lived in the Pacific Northwest her entire life. Andrea is passionate about helping others and loves the families that she works with. Through her years working with children with disabilities she has seen ABA positively impact many families lives!
Jessica Maslanka is originally from Pittsburgh, PA, where she received her Bachelor’s in Psychology from the University of Pittsburgh. She is currently pursuing a Master’s in Industrial and Organizational Psychology through Capella University and will be starting Eastern Washington’s Master of Business Administration program in the fall. Since beginning with SOAR Behavior Services, Jess has progressed from direct work to authorization management to now serving as the Executive Assistant to Executive Director, Jim Matthews.
Angie Hodge earned her Bachelor’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology from West Virginia University in 2006. She then obtained her Master’s degree in Communication and Science Disorders from Radford University in Radford, VA, in 2008. Angie has been working as a Speech-Language Pathologist since 2008. She has worked with children in multiple settings, including in-home, out-patient clinics, and schools. She began working for SOAR in February 2020 and absolutely loves working with the children and other therapists! Angie currently lives in Spokane with her husband and two children.
Steven Wright is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst with SOAR Behavior Services. He joined the SOAR team in the spring of 2017, and thoroughly loves the opportunity to work alongside such an outstanding team of individuals in supporting our unique clients and their families. Steven completed three years of his undergraduate program in at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado before transferring and graduating from Western Oregon University with a degree in Education and Adventure Education. Prior to working at SOAR, Steven spent time running High and Low Challenge Course programs and creating group leadership curricula. He has also worked in a residential treatment program for adolescents and young adults, and has worked in the public school setting as a Behavior Support Specialist. Steven graduated from Capella University’s Master’s of Science program in Psychology with an emphasis in Applied Behavior Analysis in 2020. Steven is a certified trainer in RIGHT RESPONSE Crisis Prevention. He was born and raised in Colorado, and has an undying love for the outdoors. When not working or in school, Steven enjoys spending time traveling, hiking, fly fishing, snowboarding and spending time working in the yard and garden. He and his wife live in Spokane Valley with their growing family of 3 dogs (Gordon setters) and their shrimp. While not necessarily denying that he is Batman, you will never see Steven and Batman in the same room.
Kristy Sheppard received a Bachelor’s degree in communication disorders in 2015 from Eastern Washington University and is currently in her Master’s program receiving a degree in Clinical Psychology and Applied Behavior Analysis from Capella University. Kristy has worked in the field of ABA for over two years, and loves working with kids and seeing the amazing progress that they make. Kristy lives in Spokane, WA with her boyfriend and puppy, as well as lives close to her parents. Her career in ABA has become her dream, and has a passion for this field of work.
Emma Gollehon is currently pursuing her Master’s in Special Education through Clarion University. Upon completion, she’ll begin testing for her BCBA certification in 2020. Emma completed her undergraduate degree through Eastern Washington University receiving a Bachelors of Arts in Psychology. She has resided in Spokane for the last 4 years with her husband and pup. She is eager to help change the lives of her families through ABA.
Megan Rice recently graduated from Capella University with her master’s in Psychology with an emphasis on Applied Behavior Analysis. Megan is originally from Shoreline Washington but moved to Spokane in 2018 where she started working in direct therapy for 2 years. Megan is now working as an active supervisor for SOAR Behavior Services.
Shane Jordan serves as a Supervisor as SOAR Behavior Services. He has earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology from Colorado State University and is currently pursuing his master’s in Applied Behavioral Analysis from Capella University. Shane has been in the field of ABA going on three years now. He loves seeing individuals grow and gain opportunities to thrive in their environment. Shane is originally from Colorado and loves to spend time outdoors when he is not working. He lives with his wife and two kitties and loves to take his cat Hercules on walks in a cat backpack!
Jenni Collins earned her undergraduate degree in Social Work from Eastern Washington University with an additional year of Drug and Alcohol studies. She also holds a Master of Social Work from Boise State University and Master of Applied Behavior Analysis from Whitworth University. Working with kids who have challenging behaviors led Jenni to pursue a masters in ABA. Before working in the field of ABA, she worked as an adoption Social Worker and a Counselor for youth with high behavioral needs. Jenni has a deep passion for working with youth and their families, and dreams of making a difference in their lives. SOAR has given her the opportunity to fulfill this dream. Jenni lives in Spokane Valley with her husband, children and pets.
My name is Trevor Geren. I was born and raised here in Spokane. I just couldn’t find a reason to leave. I got my degree in Psychology from EWU and am currently pursuing my Masters in Psychology at Capella University. I love working with kids and have been doing so since college. I worked in daycares, ran a youth ministry for a couple years and have done a variety of volunteer work with special needs children. SOAR has been an amazing place to work at for the last two and half years. This place is home.
Angela Douma was born and raised in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She graduated from Northern Michigan University with a degree in Applied Behavior Analysis and holds a BCaBA certification. She made the move to Washington to work as a supervisor for SOAR in the summer of 2021 due to her love of working with children and exploring the outdoors. Angela accidentally stumbled upon Applied Behavior Analysis during a psychology class and been in love with it ever since. She has been working in the field for a little over two years. Her passion for working with individuals of all ages continues to grow.
Nicole Vedder earned her undergraduate degree in Psychology from the University of Idaho. She also holds a Master of Applied Behavior Analysis with an Emphasis in Autism Studies from Ball State University. She is currently a practicing Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA). Nicole recently relocated to the Spokane area from southern Idaho, where she served as a clinical director for a mental health agency servicing children, adolescents, and adults. She has been working in the field for eight years now. Nicole hopes to bring her expansive knowledge of services to the team and is dedicated to helping both children and families navigate treatment. When not practicing behavior analytic services, Nicole enjoys camping, hiking, and spending time with her family.
Katie Tvrdy holds a Bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University in Psychology and a Masters degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from National University. She is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) with over twelve years of experience investing in children with special needs; she has worked directly in the behavior analysis field for over 8 years while employed through agencies in California, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Washington. Katie currently lives in Wisconsin where she is close to her family. She loves to spend time traveling and reading when she is not working. Katie is passionate about helping her clients achieve their goals and help them to overcome and understand their challenges.
Reed Tate received his Bachelor’s degree in Social Science from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. He began his career in Social Work and Mental Health Services. For the past thirteen years he has worked with children and adults with developmental disabilities in clinic, home, and school settings in North Idaho and finds this work very rewarding. In 2020, he completed his master’s degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from the Florida Institute of Technology. He began working in 2021 as a BCBA at SOAR. Reed strives to collaborate with families to provide ABA services that are individualized and meet the needs of the entire family. He continues to reside in North Idaho with his wife, son, and their Goldendoodle, Willow. When he is not working he enjoys spending time with friends and family, reading, and enjoying the outdoors including hiking, biking, and snowboarding.
Dakota Hornsby holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Eastern Washington University and is currently pursuing a Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy through Capella University. She has been with SOAR since November 2018 and takes great pride in welcoming clients to our SOAR Family. With Dakota’s previous experience as a Behavior Technician, she has had the opportunity to gain knowledge of both the clinical and operational aspects of the company. She is dedicated to ensuring the transition to ABA therapy for families is as smooth and informative as possible. Outside of Dakota’s passions of work and school, she enjoys traveling, reading, and spending time with her loved ones!
My name is Marsela Markovic-Reierson and I am the Credentialing Coordinator at Soar Behavior Services. When I am not working, you can find me on the road with my wife and our Golden Retriever, Brave, in search of the next mountaintop to climb or adventure to chase! Camping, kayaking, hiking, and generally being in the outdoors is what I love. I am passionate about always pushing the boundaries of what I can and cannot achieve, and firmly believe our purpose as humans is to walk with others in the valleys while also celebrating their peaks in life. I am proud to be a part of a company whose mission is to uplift, inspire and minister to others with whole hearted passion!
Hannah Brink worked over a decade in the service industry before joining the SOAR team in 2019. She began work as a Behavior Technician after receiving her Bachelor’s of Science in Developmental Psychology from Eastern Washington University. After being in the position for a year, she took on the role of Operations Assistant where she is able to put her passion for supporting others, streamlining processes, and staying organized into practice in order to help SOAR thrive in every area. Hannah has been a Spokane resident for most of her life where is lives and has begun to raise a family with her husband. In her time off, she likes exploring the cities dining and shopping, traveling to new destinations, doing yoga, cooking, and spending time with close family and friends. Above all else, she loves being a mama to her daughter. She is so thankful to have found a work home in SOAR and looks forward to being a part of the positive difference we are making in each other’s and our clients lives.
Sam Branon has dedicated her career to specialty clinics and has spent over a decade developing her leadership skills. She resides in Spokane Valley with her husband, three kids, two dogs, and a cat. Her hobbies include camping, hiking, baking, reading, and spending time with her family. Sam is proud to work along with SOAR while impacting our community in positive ways.
Cydney was born and raised in Alaska, where she graduated from the University of Alaska Anchorage with her bachelor’s degree in Psychology. During her undergrad, she worked in a chiropractic office in which she gained knowledge and experience with medical billing. In 2017, Cydney moved to Spokane with her husband and son, and began working with SOAR as a behavioral therapist. She quickly gained a passion for helping children and their families. After a year of working with kids, Cydney stepped behind the scenes to fill SOAR’s need for a medical biller. While the experience of working directly with our clients is irreplaceable, she is thankful to be a part of helping them receive ABA services in their time of need.
Jessica Stoliecki lives in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan with her husband and two daughters. She received her Associates Degree in Business from Northern Michigan University in 2010. She has been working as a Medical Biller for over a decade. In her free time, she loves riding her horses, camping, and spending time with her family. She looks forward to making a difference with a company that has a huge impact on little lives when they need it most.
Bobby White holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Eastern Washington University in Health Services Administration. He currently works as an Authorization Manager for SOAR Behavior Services. In his free time, he likes to hike, ride bikes, and read books. He is passionate about serving those in need and giving back to his community.
Nicholas “Nick” Plaut has been with SOAR since April 2018 and is currently working as the Receptionist and Authorization Manager for our Spokane Central Clinic. Nick was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, where he discovered his love of skiing and basketball. Nick is passionate about learning and personal growth and is eager to help those we serve.
Sue Burbridge has a Bachelor’s degree from Eastern Washington University in Business Administration. Over the years, she has enjoyed helping people while working in Customer Service related fields. She lives in Spokane with her husband Mark, three adult children and one special granddaughter Shaya. She loves to travel, garden, sew, and the outdoors. “If your’e lucky enough to live in the woods, you are lucky enough!”
Hannah Petty was born and raised in Spokane, currently residing in Deer Park with her husband and two kids. She has spent the last 12 years working in customer service. From a young age she has always had a passion for being able to work with and help people however she can. When not working, Hannah enjoys spending time with her family outdoors, camping, fishing, and spending time at the beach. She also has a huge heart for animals. Her family has 4 dogs, 1 cat and 1 snake. Animals and people are what make her most happy. Being with SOAR, feels like right where she is meant to be, doing exactly what she loves