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Clinical Staff – East Coast

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Norah L. Wilson, Psy.D., BCBA-D
Clinical Director

Norah’s background in Autism is of a personal nature; she has an aunt diagnosed with Autism. Norah’s formal training began on the East Coast while she was completing her bachelor’s degree from St. Leo College. Upon completing her Master’s Degree in 1995, Norah moved to California to begin work on her doctorate at United States International University in Clinical Psychology. Norah was employed by the Lovaas Institute for Early Intervention as a Senior Therapist before launching B.E.S.T Services, Inc in 1998. Since that time Norah has attended numerous trainings, seminars and workshops to ensure integration of current research into practices.

Most recent attendance has included:

  • PECS 2-day training workshop by Andy Bondy, Ph.D.
  • Structured Play by Pamela Wolfberg
  • Verbal Behavior and the ABBLS by Vincent Carbone, Ph.D.

Dr. Wilson’s strengths include program development for in-home clients as well as structuring school based interventions for children diagnosed with Autism. Dr. Wilson has been a Board Certified Behavior Analyst since 2006. To contact Dr. Norah Wilson please

E-mail her at drnlw@bestautismservices.com.

Breanna Anderson, M.A., BCBA
Case Supervisor

Coming from a family that works in special education, Breanna has been around children with Autism and other special needs since she was young. Inspired by these experiences, she went on to receive her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from San Diego State University, and then her Master’s in Teaching with an emphasis in Applied behavior Analysis. She joined B.E.S.T. Services, Inc. in 2007 and was promoted to Advising Tutor in 2008, and then to Regional Manager of San Diego and Riverside Counties in June of 2011. She received her BCBA in 2013. Breanna transferred to the East Coast in February 2016.

E-mail Breanna Anderson at banderson@bestautismservices.com.

Kelly Gilpatrick, ME.d, BCBA
Case Supervisor

Kelly has been working in the field of Applied Behavior Analysis and Autism the last three years. After completing her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Chaminade University, she started working as a Behavior Therapist II at a center-based autism program and was quickly promoted to a Lead Therapist. From there, she moved to Northern California and worked as a Behavior Assistant for a new Early Intervention program before finally settling in Virginia.

Kelly started working with B.E.S.T. Service in 2010 as a tutor and was promoted to a Senior Case Advisor for the Virginia and North Carolina areas. She is currently pursuing further education and wants to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst.

E-mail Kelly Gipatrick at kgilpatrick@bestautismservices.com.

Meaghan D. Barry, M.S., RBT
Junior Case Advisor

Meaghan Barry graduated from Longwood University in 2004 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Education. Upon graduation Meaghan took a teaching position with Fairfax County Public Schools in Northern Virginia where she taught Physical Education and Health for two years at the middle school level. During her time in the Fairfax County Public School System, she also earned her certificate to teach Drivers Education from George Mason University. In 2006 Meaghan moved to Virginia Beach where she taught Physical Education and enrolled at Old Dominion University to pursue her passion of working with children.

Meaghan taught Children with Autism in Virginia Beach Public School System for five years while working on her M.S. degree in Special Education. She joined the B.E.S.T. Services Team in October 2013, working as an in-home Tutor. In 2014 Meaghan earned her Master’s Degree in Special Education and was awarded the Autism Certificate. More recently through B.E.S.T. Services, Meaghan became certified as a Registered Behavior Technician.

Meaghan Barry is most content when teaching children and this has become her passion in life. She has concentrated recently on working with in-home clients and in the near future will begin working on her BCBA certification.

Melissa Caldwell, M.A., BCBA
Case Supervisor

Melissa Caldwell graduated in 2012 with a bachelor degree in psychology with a minor in special education from Norfolk State University. She started working at autistic summer camp when she was fifteen as peer educator. She continued to work there every summer through college and began implementing ABA techniques when she was 18 as a therapist. Once graduated she aspired to continue working in children with autism using ABA techniques and began to work for B.E.S.T Services.

Melissa has been work for B.E.S.T as a Direct Tutor since August 2012, and was promoted to Junior Case Advisor in May 2014. Melissa is a Registered Behavior technician who is currently working on her Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction in Applied Behavioral Analysis, while working on her BCBA credentials through Arizona State University to become a Board Certified Behavioral Analyst.

“Forget all the reasons it won’t work and believe the one reason that it will.” – Unknown

To contact Melissa Caldwell please E-mail her at mwilson@bestautismservices.com.

Joel Roman, RBT

Joel Roman was born and raised in Bridgeport, CT. Joel has been working with children since he was 15 as a summer camp counselor at Hall Neighborhood House in Bridgeport,CT,Joel began working with individuals with Disabilities in 2008 as a Mentor/Aid for the Department of Developmental Services in Connecticut as well as a Mentor for the Nehemiah Commission Center. Joel wrote and directed a play for children giving them their own voice expressing their talents in their own unique way. Joel has now been with Best since 2013 and loves this new venture, sharing his gifts and talents with the BEST clients.

Joel doesn’t see his occupation as a job but more as a farmer planting seeds of greatness into the lives of his clients. Joel loves the arts, sports, and encouraging people to be the best they can be. He is full of energy, positive, and optimistic. Joel is goal oriented and faith driven believing all things are possible for those who believe.

Al KlughHeather Lawrence, M.A., BCBA, LBA
Telehealth Consultant

Heather has been working in the field of Applied Behavior Analysis and Autism the last 12 years. While completing her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Child Development from California State University she worked as an ABA Tutor in Sacramento, California. It was there she saw the importance and positive impact that ABA services have on children and their families. From there, she moved to North Carolina and completed her Masters Degree in Health Education & Behavior while working for B.E.S.T Services under the mentorship of Dr. Wilson. It was under Dr. Wilson’s mentorship that Heather completed her BCBA Certification.

Heather uses a variety of therapy practices including Applied Behavior Analysis and Verbal Behavior. She also uses evidence based practices for those affected by Autism Spectrum Disorder. Treatment includes: Discrete Trial Training (DTT), Natural Environment Teaching (NET), Functional Communication Training (FCT), Precision Teaching, and Social Skills Training.

Heather currently lives in Oregon and provides BCBA Supervision via Telehealth. She is passionate about providing quality support for Registered Behavior Technicians to build on their strengths. This creates a positive and effective environment for her client’s to learn.

E-mail Heather Lawrence at hlawrence@bestautismservices.com

Denise WrightDenise Wright, B.A., RBT
Senior Behavior Technician

Denise knew from a young age that she wanted to help educate young children. In 2009, she was given the opportunity to work with children with autism as a paraprofessional for Stafford County Public Schools. It wasn’t until she moved to Virginia Beach in 2015, that she began working with B.E.S.T. Services and became a Registered Behavior Technician. In April of 2018 she was promoted to Senior RBT and since that time she graduated from Western Governors University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Educational Studies. She is currently pursuing a Master of Arts Degree in Special Education with an emphasis in Applied Behavior Analysis. Her ultimate professional goal is to become a BCBA.

E-mail Denise Wright at dwright@bestautismservices.com

Kate Overholtzer, M.Ed, RBT
Senior Behavior Technician

Born and raised in Alaska, Kate has lived in several diverse regions across the United States. Believing that every child has potential, Kate has advocated for children with special needs since 2011. In August of 2013, Kate received her Bachelor of Sciences in Psychology from Auburn University, Montgomery. While working for B.E.S.T. as a Registered Behavior Technician, Kate completed a Masters of Education with an emphasis in special education and applied behavior analysis from the University of Pennsylvania. Kate’s ultimate goal is to become board certified and will sit for her exam in the near future.

E-mail Kate Overholtzer at koverholtzer@bestautismservices.com