Meet our Certified Academic Language Therapists (CALT) and Certified Structured Literacy Dyslexia Specialists (C-SLDS) Staff at Multisensory Reading Center

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Jen Parra, M.Ed., CALT, C‑SLDS

Executive Director

Meet Jen here!

Jen Parra founded the Multisensory Reading Center in 2015 and has over 18 years of experience working with children who have learning differences including dyslexia, ADHD, autism, LD, and ESL students. Her passion is using science-based interventions to unlock literacy for all students. She has a master’s in Education from Midwestern State University with an emphasis in dyslexia and is a Certified Academic Language Therapist (CALT) through the Academic Language Therapy Association, and a Certified Structured Literacy Dyslexia Specialist (SLDS) with the International Dyslexia Association.
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Amanda Bush, M.Ed., CALT

Director of Student and School Services

Meet Amanda here!

Amanda has over 10 years of experience working with students as a Certified Academic Language Therapist and a Certified School Counselor. She has a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies from Florida State University and M.Ed. in School Counseling from Dallas Baptist University. She takes great joy in helping students increase their self‑esteem by improving their reading skills, and has worked in both public and private settings.
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Christy Olsson, BA, CALT

Director of Student Services
Christy Olsson is a multisensory and academic language specialist. She has a Child Development Credential, and a BA in Human Development with an Education Emphasis, as well as a CO State teaching license. She has worked as an elementary and middle school teacher and as a reading and dyslexia specialist for many years. Christy lives in Tucson, Arizona, and loves spending time with her husband, sons, daughter, and grandchildren.
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Rebecca Griffith, M.Ed, C-SLDS

Director of Outreach and Education

Meet Rebecca here!

Rebecca has over 10 years of experience working with students of all ages, both abroad and in the Unites States. She has a Master's degree in Education from George Mason University with an emphasis on Curriculum and Instruction. Before becoming a Structured Literacy Dyslexia Specialist (SLDS) through the International Dyslexia Association, she was a certified ESL teacher in Washington DC, Virginia and North Carolina Public Schools. Rebecca’s passion is guiding students to overcome challenges and reach their full potential.
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Jamie Kenny, M.Ed., LDT, CALT

Jamie Kenny has over 21 years of experience working with children. She believes that all students can be successful when the right approach is applied to their specific learning styles. She has spent the last 18 years as a private tutor and dyslexia therapist. Watching students become successful is her most rewarding life experience. Jamie has a bachelor of arts from Loyola University and a master’s in Education from Midwestern State University, with a specialization in dyslexia and a diagnostician certification. She is also a Licensed Dyslexia Therapist (LDT) in the State of Texas and a Certified Academic Language Therapist (CALT).
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Sherri Turnquist, B.S. Ed., CALT, C‑SLDS

Meet Sherri here!

Sherri Turnquist has over 25 years of teaching experience with children who struggle with spelling and reading. She taught first grade for 17 years before becoming a dyslexia therapist. Sherri has a Bachelor of Science in Multidisciplinary Elementary Education. She is a Certified Academic Language Therapist and Structured Literacy Dyslexia Specialist. She also runs one of the top 50 blogs about dyslexia: Turning Around Dyslexia
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Vicki Littleton, BS‑Ed, CALT, LDT, C‑SLDS

Meet Vicki here!

Vicki has a Bachelor of Science in Education from Tennessee Temple University and has over 36 years of teaching experience, and 23 years of dyslexia therapy experience. As a novice teacher, she could see a pattern in struggling readers, so she set out to find help for them. Through much research, Vickie found the Orton‑Gillingham multisensory method to be the most effective in teaching students with dyslexia and other reading difficulties. In 1993, she attained her Academic Language Therapy Certification from Southern Methodist University. She is also a Licensed Dyslexia Therapist in the State of Texas. Vicki’s passion is teaching children to love reading.
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Peggy Brooks, QI, CALT, LDT

Peggy has a B.S. in K-8th grade from West Georgia College and an M.S. in Reading from Texas A&M Commerce. She has taught for 34 years (28 years in public education and 6 years in private schools) and she is also a Certified Academic Language Therapist, licensed dyslexia therapist, and a qualified instructor for training teachers in Orton-Gillingham methodologies. As a dyslexic, Peggy understands and enjoys helping these children discover how smart they truly are, and how successful they can become. She believes in this teaching method and has seen, many times, the successes the students show because it works!
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Kristen Mulos, MA, LDT, CALT

Meet Kristen here!

Kristen has over 29 years of experience working with students with dyslexia. She has always loved watching children who struggle "get reading." She holds a master’s degree in Reading from Texas A&M Commerce. She is a reading specialist, a Certified Academic Language Therapist, and an academic language therapist. She loves the bonds she forms with her students and their families, from navigating school situations to receiving emails, texts, or videos of her students reading.
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Diane Colonnese, M.Ed., CALT

Meet Diane here!

Diane Colonnese is a Texas-certified teacher with over 20 years of experience teaching students of all ages and abilities. She has worked in public and private school settings, and she also homeschooled her daughter for many years. Diane received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Auburn University and her teaching license from the Metropolitan State University of Denver. She also has a master’s degree in Learning Therapy from Southern Methodist University, enabling her to become a Certified Academic Language Therapist (CALT) through the Academic Language Therapy Association (ALTA). Diane loves to encourage, build trust, and confidence with her students as they learn and grow!
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Andrea A. Gallo, Esquire, M.Ed., C‑SLDS

Andrea has a B.A. from George Washington University; an M.Ed., Arcadia University; and a J.D., Widener School of Law. As a special education advocate and mom of a son with dyslexia and APD. She understands the impact of strong literacy programming. Andrea is certified by the International Dyslexia Association as a Structured Literacy Dyslexia Specialist.
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Debbie Hitt, B.S, LDT, CALT

Meet Debbie here!

Debbie has 30 years of teaching experience, which includes 10 years in the classroom, as well as 20 years as a dyslexia therapist. Her passion for teaching reading to struggling learners led her to language therapy training. Her 20 years of teaching dyslexic students, and helping them progress into successful readers and writers, has been the highlight of her teaching career. Debbie has a B.S. in Education from Stephen F. Austin State University. She is also a Certified Academic Language Therapist (CALT) and is a Licensed Dyslexia Therapist (LDT) in the State of Texas.
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Heather Doolittle, B.S., C‑SLDS

Meet Heather here!

Heather has a B.S. in Landscape Horticulture from Colorado State University, where she was first introduced to the idea of applying science as an art. Her formal introduction to dyslexia came in 2008 when the struggles of homeschooling and online schooling required her to ask, “Why is this so difficult?” Looking back, she realized it was dyslexia that helped set the stage for the decision to school at home in the first place. Heather’s experience in the years that followed has ignited her passion to help struggling readers. Heather has been trained in several reading programs, including Barton, IEW, and Lexercise. Heather recognizes the importance and impact of applying the current science of reading as an art to help each individual client reach their literacy goals.
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Anne Silveus, BBA, CALT

Meet Anne here!

Anne is a 26-year Texas Certified educator with experience in elementary general education, special education serving learning disabled students, and has spent the last 8 years providing structured literacy intervention for students with dyslexia. She is certified in Pre-K–12 Special Ed, EC-8 General Ed, ESL, GT, and is trained in using a structured literacy methodology through the Multisensory Teaching Approach program. Anne is a Certified Academic Language Practitioner (CALP). She takes great pride in building students’ self‑confidence and helping them realize the enjoyment that reading can bring.

Jaime Orozco Ed.S, C-SLDS

Meet Jaime here!

Jaime Orozco is an Education Specialist with a passion for curriculum design, teacher training, and multisensory instruction. She is celebrating twenty years in the field of education working with elementary, middle, high school, and university students. Her heart to see learners thrive and enjoy the learning journey translated into a commitment to help struggling reading, writing, and math students to succeed. Jaime is trained in structured literacy and certified as a Structured Literacy Dyslexia Specialist through the International Dyslexia Association.
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Karen Bruton, B.S, LDT, CALT

Meet Karen here!

Karen Bruton has over 30 years of teaching experience with students who have learning differences especially in the areas of reading, writing, and spelling. Karen has a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Baylor University with certifications in Kindergarten, Early Childhood (PK-6), Learning/Language Disabled (PK-12), and English (1-8). She taught Special Education/Resource at the elementary school level for 15 years before becoming a Dyslexia Therapist. Karen’s passion for dyslexia started when her 5-year-old son experienced reading difficulties. He was later identified as dyslexic in 4th grade and is now pursuing a postgraduate degree. She also has 2 daughters and 2 grandchildren. She is a Certified Academic Language Therapist (CALT) and Licensed Dyslexia Therapist (LDT) with the state of Texas.

Jessica Badgett, M.Ed, LDT, CALT

Meet Jessica here!

Jessica Badgett has been working with students with learning differences for over 14 years. She received her Bachelor of Science in Special Education with an emphasis in Emotional and Behavioral Disorders at Texas A&M University and Master of Education with a specialty in Learning Therapy from Southern Methodist University. Jessica holds certifications in teaching Special Education Early Childhood through 12th grade, General Education Early Childhood Early Childhood through 6th grade, and is a Certified Academic Language Therapist. She served on the Board of Directors for the Dallas Branch International Dyslexia Association and has a passion for serving the dyslexia community. Jessica's professional and personal experience working with children with attention and behavioral disorders has also given her a strength in working with students with co-existing challenges such as ADHD.
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Kim Arthur, M.Ed., LDT, CALT - QI

Meet Kim here!

Kim has been serving students with dyslexia for 21 years, 17 of which were in public schools in the North Texas area, as well as private dyslexia therapy for the last 4 years. Kim has a BS degree from UT Austin and a Master of Education degree with a Multi-sensory Specialization from Dallas Baptist University. Kim is a State of Texas Licensed Teacher, a Licensed Dyslexia Therapist, LDT, and a Certified Academic Language Therapist, CALT- QI. She has an additional certification of Qualified Instructor through the Academic Language Therapy Association to train teachers in the Take Flight Dyslexia Curriculum. Kim began her journey teaching students with dyslexia after her 2nd grade daughter was diagnosed with dyslexia, who is now a high school physics teacher. A success story for sure. Her passion is guiding students to success in reading, spelling and writing, while bolstering their self-esteem and teaching self advocacy. She loves working with families to understand dyslexia and how they, too, can make a difference for their child.
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Sandra May, Lexercise Certified Clinician

Meet Sandra here!

Sandra has 30 years of teaching experience both in public and private schools. She holds a Bachelor of Art and Science through Dallas Baptist University in Interdisciplinary Studies and holds a Texas teaching certification in early childhood through 8th grade ELA, early childhood through 4th-grade generalist, and early childhood through 8th grade ESL. She is also a Lexercise Certified Clinician. She is passionate about education and helping each student to reach their full potential. A quote from one of her recent student’s parents reads, “This program has changed my daughter’s life for the better. 20 years from now I will still remember the sincerity and time that Sandra put into Lily. I am forever and eternally grateful that she helped us so much.”
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Marla Treat, B.S.Ed, CALT

Meet Marla here!

Marla has 24 years of teaching experience in both public and private school settings, and another 10 years working with preschool-aged children while raising her own two daughters. She enjoys building up confidence with struggling learners in reading and writing, using multi-sensory methods to bring about their understanding and mastery. She has a Bachelor of Science in Education K-8th, with an emphasis in reading from The University of Central Oklahoma. She added her certification in Early Childhood, ESL, and earned her Reading Specialist credential. She then worked at becoming a Certified Academic Language Therapist (CALT) through the Academic Language Therapy Association.
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Ruth Doocy, MA, LDT, CALT

Meet Ruth here!

Ruth has over 30 years of experience supporting children with dyslexia, ADHD, LD, and those at-risk for academic issues. She has been a private tutor, teacher, and reading coach for children of all ages. She is a Certified Academic Language Therapist and a Licensed Dyslexia Therapist in the State of Texas and is trained in Take Flight and Pre-Flight. She has a M.A. in Early Childhood Education from the University of Kansas and has provided instructional coaching and professional development to teachers in the area of emergent literacy, phonological awareness, and reading /school readiness. Ruth is also a Children’s Yoga and Mindfulness instructor and is passionate about providing children strategies to help them with calming, self-management and focus.

Angi Lunde, B.S., CALT, LDT

Meet Angi here!

Angi has twenty-seven years of experience in education: eleven years in the classroom and sixteen years as a dyslexia therapist. Her experience collaborating with struggling readers, as well as both of her sons identified with dyslexia, dysgraphia and language disorders led her to pursue language therapy training. Journeying through dyslexia both professionally and personally led to Angi to providing intervention, guidance, and encouragement for the learner and their support system. Angi has a B.S. in Psychology and Teacher Certification from Texas A&M University (WHOOP!). She is a Certified Academic Language Therapist (CALT) and Licensed Dyslexia Therapist (LDT) in the State of Texas. She is the mother of two grown boys and wife to a native Minnesotan, lived in TX all her life, and a lover of all things books and animals.
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Marie Havens, M.Ed, PCET, C-SLDS

Meet Marie here!

Marie holds an M.Ed. in Exceptional Student Education/NILD Educational Therapy from Southeastern University; a Graduate Certificate in Educational Therapy from the University of California-Riverside; and a BS in Physical Therapy from the Ohio State University. Her journey to teaching children with dyslexia started with 20+ years of homeschooling her own bright and creative children with dyslexia. Now she uses her passion to help other struggling students become curious, confident, and competent learners!
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David Shectman, M.Ed, C-SLDS

David has nearly 20 years of classroom experience working with students of all ages, from lower elementary students learning to read up to businesspeople perfecting their public speaking. He holds a M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from George Mason University and has spent much of his adult life teaching abroad, mainly in Hungary where he worked on bi-lingual education for the Hungarian Ministry of Education. He was also the recipient of two English Language Fellowships from the U.S. Department of State (2018-2020) and traveled throughout Southeast Asia leading teacher training workshops on topics such as encouraging critical thinking in the classroom. His webinar on building community in the classroom is available on the American Embassy Bangkok Regional English Language Office's YouTube page. Above all else, David remains a people person and thrives when helping others.