Senior Administrative and Clinical team
Gloria Satriale JD, Ed.D, BSL – Executive Director
Based in Pennsylvania, Dr. Gloria Satriale is the Executive Director of Preparing Adolescents and Adults for Life (PAAL), a unique community based educational transition program for teens and comprehensive habilitation and residential program for adults diagnosed with ASD. Dr. Satriale presents and trains nationally and internationally on a wide variety of educational and instructional issues affecting autism and has particular expertise in Applied Behavior Analysis, Community Based Instruction, and assessing and increasing quality of life and happiness in severely affected individuals with autism. Dr. Satriale has served as a consultant to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Department of Education, Office of Dispute Resolution, and to many advocacy and educational programs.
Dr. Satriale currently serves on the Advisory Panel for Access and Aging for AT&T as their representative advisor for autism. She has held a Gubernatorial Appointment to the Advisory Committee to the Governor’s Cabinet on Disabilities for Pennsylvania and was an appointed participant the White House Summit on Autism under President Obama and has testified before committees of Congress and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania legislature. Dr. Satriale is a practicing attorney and fifteen-year veteran of the United States Department of Justice who has served as a Special Education Due Process Hearing Officer. Dr. Satriale is a Licensed Behavior Specialist in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, is Board Eligible for National Certification as a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst and holds a number of other certifications. Dr. Satriale’s second of her five children, Nick, is severely affected with autism.
Thomas Zane, Ph.D, BCBA-D – Clinical Director
Dr. Thomas Zane is a Professor of Education and Director of the Applied Behavior Analysis Online Program at the Institute for Behavioral Studies, Van Loan Graduate School, Endicott College. Dr. Zane earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in psychology at Western Michigan University and his doctorate in Applied Behavior Analysis at West Virginia University. He has served as a Post-Doctorate Research Associate at the University of Massachusetts, Professor at Mount Holyoke College, and Johns Hopkins University Department of Psychiatry. He is a licensed psychologist in New York and Massachusetts. Dr. Zane has published in various journals and books, presented at regional, national, and international conferences, and been an invited lecturer in Ireland and the Republic of China. His research interests include teacher training, staff development, and evidenced-based practice in autism.
James Chok PhD, BCBA-D, Psychologist
Jessica Zawacki, M.Ed, BSL, BCBA – Chief Clinical Officer
Jessica received her bachelors of science in Psychology with a Minor in Latin and Human Behavioral Studies from Ursinus College in 2008. She began working with individuals with autism in 2006 where she was an ABA/VB therapist working with a teenager within his family home delivering discrete trial instruction. She then went on to intern in 2007 in a preschool classroom with individuals with varying developmental disabilities and behavior disorders. She joined the PAAL Program in 2008 as a direct care staff member. She then pursued further education within the field and obtained her Master’s Degree in Education through Temple University in their Curriculum, Instruction, Technology, and Education program that aligned with the BCBA course sequence. During her time at Temple she co-authored a book chapter with Dr. Matt Tincani in “Educating Young Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders” focusing on functional communication training and pivotal response training. Jessica also authored a chapter with Dr. Peter Gerhardt focusing on adaptive behavior and older learners in “Social Skills and Adaptive Behavior in Learners with Autism Spectrum Disorders.” Shortly following her degree, in 2012, Jessica obtained her board certification in applied behavior analysis and was promoted within PAAL to the program’s Senior Behavior Analyst. She has maintained employment with PAAL for over 10 years where she has become a certified private special education teacher, worked as the Coordinator of Adult Services, and now holds the position of Chief Clinical Officer responsible for the clinical health of the program. Jessica is currently pursuing her Doctoral Degree through Lehigh University in the Special Education Department. As of fall 2020, she is all but dissertation. Through the course of her education and time at PAAL, Jessica has presented locally, nationally, and internationally within various Conferences, at institutions of higher learning, and at various programs and schools within a consultative capacity. Her presentation experience ranges from instruction in global best practices for learners with autism such as community-based instruction, collaborative approaches among disciplines, and quality of life approaches to her own research studies on staff training using technology, increases indices of happiness and preference assessments, and unique function-based strategies to address dangerous behaviors. Jessica also participates in instruction through the VCS (verified course sequence) in educating other BCBAs. She currently collaborates with the Consorizo Humanitas and Associazione (Rome) and the ALBA association (Pescara) to deliver the necessary instruction in supervision (from the task list) for master’s level students to meet requirements toward their BCBA. Jessica is a member of the Association for Behavior Analysis International and Philadelphia Metro Association for Behavior Analysis.
Jessica has a special interest in improving outcomes of staff training and published an article in 2016 on the use of remote technology to provide in-vivo feedback to staff working with adults with autism. She has secondary interests in measuring variables associated with indices of happiness as well as the collaborative process and overlap between psychiatry, neurology, and applied behavior analysis.
Kaitlin Ross – Program Director
Kaitlin Ross received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from LaSalle University in 2002, where she was on an athletic scholarship and captained the women’s soccer team. In 2005, she obtained her master’s degree in Counseling Psychology and Human Services with a specialization in Marriage and Family Therapy from Chestnut Hill College. She became a Board Certified Behavior Analyst in 2010 after completing the required coursework at Penn State University and is a licensed behavior specialist in the state of Pennsylvania. Kaitlin has worked with children and adults diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder since 2002 in various roles including BHRS, private and public schools, mobile therapy as well as provided consultative services in home, schools, and the workplace. Kaitlin has been with MECA since 2011, beginning as a behavior analyst. In 2015, she took on the role of Program Director. Kaitlin has presented locally and nationally within various conferences. She has presented research on communication modalities, self-injurious behavior interventions, physiological correlates between problem behavior and arousal, as well as the use of medication alternatives when addressing severe behavior.
Kaitlin is a member of the Association for Behavior Analysis International. She has a special interest in organizational behavior management and improving employee outcomes, in studying the connection between physiological correlates and overt behavior, and in improving systems within human services organizations.
Kira McGrogan – Assistant to the Executive Director
Kira is the Administrative Assistant for the PAAL Program. She attended the Art Institute of Philadelphia where she studied Fashion Marketing and received her associate’s degree in 2010. She has been on board with PAAL since January 2016.
Terry Hill – Accounting
Jen Morrison – Clinical Specialist
Jennifer Morrison received her bachelor’s degree in Human Development and Family Studies with a minor in Civic and Community Engagement from the Pennsylvania State University. She began working in the field over 11 years ago as direct care through Home and Community Services as Therapeutic Staff Support. Jennifer has dedicated 10 plus years to PAAL where she began as an Assistant Behavior Analyst. She is currently the Clinical Specialist and is pursuing her RBT training.
Eric Shindledecker – Staff Development / Community Outreach Specialist
Eric Shindledecker is a Behavior Analyst and the Staff Development and Community Outreach Specialist at PAAL. He has been with the program for ten years. He has his undergraduate degree in History and is a certified teacher in Pennsylvania. Eric earned his Master’s degree in Applied Behavior Analysis and Autism in 2014. In addition to his caseload as a BA and being the PAAL staff trainer, Eric also specializes in locating vocational sites for the individuals at PAAL, fostering new relationships with community partners, and maintaining PAAL’s positive imprint, participation, and inclusion with the local community.
Ben Kaliner – Crises Prevention Intervention Supervisor
Ben Kaliner received his bachelor’s degree in Communications from Bloomsburg University in 2009. He found his way to working with individuals with varying disabilities with a concentration on conduct disorder in a position he applied to at the Devereux Kanner Center. Looking to shift his focus and expand his skills sets, he applied to PAAL Program in 2011 where he joined as a direct care staff member. Ben first pursued expanding his skills in the area of crisis and prevention where he became a certified trainer through Safety Care in 2016. He was then promoted to Coordinator of Crisis Intervention and Prevention where he became responsible for the on-going training and certification of all PAAL staff members. He also developed a crisis team for which he supports and supervises. He then earned his Master’s degree in Education, with a specialization in Applied Behavior Analysis and Autism from Endicott College in 2017.
Through the course of his education and specialty interest, Ben has presented and conducted various training at the local level and even at the international level. He was invited to discuss the importance and utility of crisis intervention/management skills, for those who work with individuals in community settings in Italy in 2016. Additionally, Ben has a special interest in programming for health and fitness for individuals with disabilities. In 2020, Ben entered into another endeavor with PAAL and has assisted in constructing two private fitness facilities in order to begin to create and program for specialized fitness and training. His future directions include expanding this program into the community.
Gina Satriale, M.Sw – Director of Social Services & STIMMM Program
Gina Satriale is an Assistant Behavior Analyst at the PAAL Program in Downingtown PA. She received her bachelor’s degree in Criminology and Psychology from University of Miami in 2012. She previously volunteered in PAAL’s peer mentoring program and began working at PAAL after graduation. Gina has a little over two years of experience in the field, and is currently pursuing her Masters in Social Service at Bryn Mawr University.
Daniel Walsh – Behavior Analyst
Dan Walsh is a Behavior Analyst for the PAAL Program. He graduated from Pennsylvania State University with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology in 2009, and obtained a master’s degree in Education in Applied Behavior Analysis from Arizona State University in 2016. He was Board Certified in Behavior Analysis later that year. Dan has worked with children, adolescents, and adults with autism for over 12 years. Dan played rugby for 18 years, playing for Downingtown High School, Penn State, and Philadelphia Whitemarsh men’s club before “retiring” in 2019.
Megan Walsh – Assistant Education Director
Megan Walsh is the Assistant Director of Education for the PAAL program in Downingtown, PA. She received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Pittsburgh in 2009, with minors in Social Work and English Literature. She obtained her master’s degree in Curriculum, Instruction and Technology from Drexel University, with teaching certifications in Special Education, Elementary Education and Middle School English. After receiving her masters, she completed her coursework in Applied Behavior Analysis at the Florida Institute of Technology, becoming Board Certified in 2015. She is also a Licensed Behavior Specialist in PA. Megan taught elementary Emotional Support for 4.5 years. She has worked with adolescents with autism for 12 years, in the home, community and school setting.
Shana Rose – Coordinator of Adult Services
Clarissa Brown – Direct Care
Clare graduated from Oxford Area high school in 2010 and went on to pursue a certification in cosmetology. In search of a more fulfilling career, in 2014, Clare sought out employment in human services where she worked for almost 5 years in a day program with adults diagnosed with various psychiatric conditions as a personal care assistant. To further expand her skill set she joined the PAAL program in 2018.
Jennifer DiPietro – Curriculum Coordinator
and Direct Care
Jennifer DiPietro is the Billing Specialist and an Assistant Behavior Analyst at the PAAL Program in Downingtown PA. She received her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from West Chester University in 2000 where she was also volunteered as an EMT. Jennifer was a former kindergarten teacher, corporate daycare director and has over 10 years experience working with individuals with special needs. She began working at PAAL in February 2018.
McKeen N. Doe – Direct Care
McKeen N. Doe received his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Liberia in 1998 and his Masters from Strayer University in 2009. He has served as a supervisor and Medical Administrator for Community Interactions from 2010 to 2015. He also served as An Applied Behavior Analyst Counselor (ABAC) at Melmark from 2013 until starting at PAAL in December 2017.
Kyle Hampton – Direct Care / Crisis Team
Kyle Hampton is an Assistant Behavior Analyst Aid. He previously was employed as a bus aid for the Wolfington Bus Company through the Chester Country Child and Career Development Center. Kyle began at PAAL in March 2012. In 2018 he became a safety care certified trainer and in 2019 he became DSP certified.
James Harrison – Direct Care / Crisis Team
Jimmy has been with the PAAL family since 2015, having been in the hospitality and financial industries prior to his tenure beginning with MECA. He brings first hand family experience to the relationship building and potential quality of life opportunity as a natural strength to our family. He is a part of our crisis intervention team and brings tenacity and energy on a daily basis.
Clarence Hayward – Direct Care
Clarence Heyward received his Bachelors of the Arts degree in Speech Language Hearing Science from Temple University in 2015. He worked for Temple Neurosurgery for two years and was an Emergency Medical Technician for three. Since May 2015 Clarence has been working as an Assistant Behavior Analyst at PAAL.
Steven Hartman – Direct Care
Steven is an Assistant Behavior Analyst at the PAAL Program. He received his bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Millersville University in 2017. Steven previously worked in a classroom for individuals with multiple disabilities & for Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health before joining PAAL in 2018.
Tom Lake – Direct Care
Jonathan Noble – Direct Care / Crisis Team
Jon has been working at PAAL as an Assistant Behavior Analyst since May 2018. He received his Bachelor’s degree in sociology from East Stroudsburg university. Jon also played college football at ESU in 2012. Jon has been working with adolescents and adults for 6 years.
Krystal O’Neil – Lead Special Education Teacher
Brian Parker – Direct Care
Brian Parker has been working at PAAL as a Assistant Behavior Analyst since October 2017. He received his Bachelors degree in Criminal Justice from Alvernia University. Before PAAL Brian worked in Southern Chesco at Avon Grove SD as a PCA/TSS.
Alexis Price – Direct Care
Alexis Price is an Assistant Behavior Analyst Aid. She previously was employed at Kaleidescape Family Solutions working with individuals with special needs. Alexis began at PAAL in December 2017 and became a certified Director Support Professional in 2019.
Alex Richards – Direct Care
Alex studied Sociology at Cheyney University where she received her Bachelors of Art. She joined the field of autism in 2013 working through behavioral health wrap around services as a therapeutic support staff. She joined PAAL in 2015 in order to obtain further development and make a difference. Alex would like to pursue further certifications and expand her role within the disabilities field.
Christi Rothermel – Direct Care
Vanesa Juarez – Direct Care
Vanesa has been with PAAL since the beginning of 2021. She decided to join PAAL and dedicate herself to helping people on the spectrum due to a family member being diagnoses with autism. Vanesa became very interested in learning and getting a better understanding of individuals with autism. She is excited to continue working with PAAL and giving someone a meaningful of life. Vanesa enjoys sunny weather and walks with her dogs.
Ricky DeLeguardia – Direct Care
Pavlo Demkiv – Direct Care
Pavlo Demkiv received his undergraduate degree from La Salle University in 2013, and has been involved in social services ever since. In 2015 he began volunteering at Depaul House—a transitional housing facility for men in Philadelphia—and quickly became a full-time employee as a Residential Aide. In 2017 he began working with at-risk youth at Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health before joining PAAL in 2019 as an Assistant Behavior Analyst.
Nydemia McFadden – Direct Care
Najada Karanxha – Direct Care
Earned psychology degree in 2020, and specialized in applied behavior analysis. In 2019, I was offered an internship focusing on providing alternative behaviors to young children on a mission to help change the course of a developing child. Recently I have been added by the P.A.A.L program to continue working in my field. I have provided clinical behavior therapy to those with developmental, intellectual, and behavioral diagnosis. Some protocols I have implemented are NET (Naturalistic Environmental Teaching), Incidental Teaching, Discrete Trial Training. I’m very impressed by the outcome of these types of skill acquisition plans. I’m very passionate about achieving the outcomes and objectives.
Michael Calio – Direct Care
Mike has been with PAAL since November 2020. Mike was a swimmer and water polo player at Shippensburg University. Mike majored in Criminal Justice and graduated in 2002. Mike is new to ABA, but very excited to learn new skills and meet new students.
Macie Guzman – Direct Care
Hello my name is Macie. I have prior experience working with Adolescents. About five years ago I took a 3-week class to become a certified nursing assistant. I really enjoyed working with the elderly but I felt like I could be doing more. I joined PAAL in February and I fell in love with what PAAL stands for and what we do here. I’ve learned so much and I’m continuing to learn.
Kim Esposito – Training Specialist
Kim started at PAAL in April 2019 as an Assistant Behavior Analyst and is now the staff Training Specialist. She received her Bachelor’s degree in psychology from West Chester University in 2013 where she also played rugby and was the captain of the Women’s Rugby team her senior year. Kim then received her Masters Degree in school counseling from WCU in 2015. Kim has been working in special education for over 6 years and has recently obtained her Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) certification.
Deborah Holderer – Direct Care
I have four years of experience with the ASD population. I underwent countless hours of training in trauma informed care. I have a passion for helping people. I love my job at PAAL because I get to be a part of the growth and success of the people I serve!
Amonie Holloman – Direct Care
My name is Amonie Holloman and I have been a member of the PAAL staff since November 2, 2020. I worked in the field for 2 years prior to coming here. I worked for Elwyn at the Davidson School as a classroom support staff. I have an associates degree from Delaware County Community College. I enjoy working in this field because it is rewarding and every day offers a new challenge. I played basketball in high school and college so teamwork is a huge part of who I am, and that is the PAAL way so I fit perfectly with the culture of PAAL.
Camilo Alba – Direct Care
Chris Laycox – Direct Care
Chris has only been a member of PAAL for a month, but he brings with him enthusiasm, a positive attitude, and a wealth of experience. He has worked over eleven years in the field of developmental disabilities as both a DSP and Lead Staff of a program in Massachusetts. Chris cares deeply for his work and the individuals he serves. He strongly believes that working with individuals with developmental disabilities, like Autism, is not only a job, it’s a part of his life. Chris views his job as much a part of his life as family and friends, and puts as much care and dedication into it.
Alexis Bobo – Direct Care
Alexis has been a member of the PAAL team since March 2021. She has previous experience working amongst children with special needs and wanted to expand her knowledge by now working with adolescents and adults at the PAAL Program. Alexis has completed the Registered Behavioral Technician training through the Autism Partnership Foundation and with the help of PAAL will only elevate in her career.
Alisha Nelson – Direct Care
Alisha has worked within the medical profession as a CNA for 6 years before transitioning into working with adults and children with disabilities. She has worked as a DSP for 5 years in a variety of settings which includes home and community-based services.
Brittney Albrand – Direct Care
Brittney Albrand is an Assistant Behavior Analyst Aide, who joined The PAAL Program team in April of 2019. Brittney has the ability to quickly build a strong, positive rapport with the students. She brings forth a wide horizon of creativity and loves to assist with art projects. Brittney has completed the RBT training course and is looking forward to sitting for the exam to become a certified registered behavior technician. “I am eager to increase my knowledge and application of ABA principles!”
Christal Jeremiah – Direct Care
I am currently in school working on my bachelors in human services. I have been working in this field for over 7+ years. My older brother is autistic and growing up I was scared of him now I am comfortable with him and I enjoy working with individuals who might feel misunderstood.
Dominic Morris – Direct Care
Hello my name is Dominic Morris I graduated from De La Salle vocational school in Bensalem. I have previously worked at the RHD Program and also Devereux for over 6 years, I been in the field for a long while and I enjoy the success of individuals with autism and helping them with their challenges. One interesting fact that always pulled me into the field is I have a sister with mild intellectual disabilities and its always been my duty to help her as much as I can and that’s what I’m here to do with the individuals at PAAL!
Sieeta Thomas – Direct Care
I’m an undergrad at Wilmington University, majoring in behavioral science. After obtaining my bachelor’s degree, I plan on furthering my education to become a behavior analyst.
I have been working in the field with individuals with disability all over the spectrum for roughly 10 years. It’s something I enjoy and am passionate about since I was younger.
Dominique Doan – Direct Care
Dominique has been a member of the PAAL team since July 2019. She has worked in the field for over 6 years, mainly with adults with special needs, but accepted the challenge to expand her skills to meet the needs of adolescents upon arriving at PAAL. Dominique holds a certification from the Association of Community Rehabilitation Educators as well as the direct support professional certification in dual diagnosis from the NADD. She has also completed the registered behavior technician course and will be sitting for her exam shortly.
Matt Johnson – Direct Care
I graduated from Kutztown University with a degree in Criminal Justice and Sociology. I worked as a case manager for 7 years before coming to PAAL I have been working at PAAL since 2017. What I enjoy most is speaking with the students about our shared interests.