Bobbi Pineda, PhD, OTR/L, CNT

NTCB Co-Chair

Dr. Bobbi Pineda has been an occupational therapist in the NICU since 1992. Since 2007, Bobbi has been a research scientist with an interest in developing, implementing and testing interventions that can optimize neurodevelopmental outcome in high risk newborn infants, specifically infants born prematurely. Dr. Pineda is certified as a trainer on the NICU Network Neurobehavioral Scale (NNNS). She is certified in the Neonatal Oral Motor Assessment Scale (NOMAS) and has advanced training in Prechtl’s General Movement Assessment. Dr. Pineda has developed a new neonatal feeding assessment, the Neonatal Eating Outcome assessment. She has a patent on a new bottle technology that is under development. She also developed the Supporting and Enhancing NICU Sensory Experiences (SENSE) program. She speaks regularly at national conferences and educational platforms, has published multiple articles on neonatal therapy topics in pediatric and therapy journals, and mentors occupational therapy students who want to work in the NICU setting. Dr. Pineda feels privileged to serve on the NTCB that oversees the process of ensuring that therapists working within the NICU receive advanced training and achieve a standard of knowledge to guide them in providing safe and developmentally appropriate therapeutic interventions in the NICU.


Assistant Professor
University of Southern California
Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
Keck School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics
Los Angeles, CA

Deanna Gibbs, PhD, MOT, GC Res Meth, BAppSc(OT), CNT

International Representative

Dr. Deanna Gibbs has worked predominantly in acute pediatric settings, with a specific focus in neonatal intensive care since 1994. Dr. Gibbs has worked across a variety of acute pediatric and neonatal settings in Australia, Ireland and the United Kingdom. In her role as a research consultant for Barts Health NHS Trust, Dr. Gibbs’ research program explores parent-infant co-occupations in neonatal intensive care and the facilitation of family-centered developmental care. Dr. Gibbs is a honorary senior research fellow at City, University of London, a trainer in the Newborn Behavioral Observations (NBO) for The Brazelton Centre of Great Britain and serves as the international representative for the NTCB.


Research Consultant
Barts Health NHS Trust
London, UK

Margaret Miller, MS, OTR/L, C/NDT, CIMI, NTMTC, CNT


Margaret Miller has worked in a level III, now level IV, NICU since 1983. In addition to be a practicing clinician in the NICU and developmental follow-up, she has also been involved with program development and mentoring. She has certifications in NIDCAP, IBA, NNNS, NDT, SIPT, and infant massage. Margaret is adjunct faculty at Eastern Washington University and Spokane Falls Community College. Through her academic appointments, Margaret has conducted clinical research with graduate OT students. Additionally, Margaret has taught nationally and internationally on topics of early infant development. Margaret has published articles in American Journal of Occupational Therapy and Neonatal Network.


Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center
Spokane, WA

Gail A. Poskey, PhD, OTR, CNT

Gail Poskey has been an occupational therapist since 1988 and has worked in pediatric rehabilitation and has extensive clinical experience as an occupational therapist in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). She is currently an associate professor in the School of Occupational Therapy at Texas Woman’s University. She teaches and mentors students in pediatrics and research. She has advanced training in the Prechtl’s General Movement Assessment and continues to work PRN in a Level III NICU in Dallas, Texas. Gail has presented at local, state, national, and international conferences and has published several articles in peer reviewed journals. She is excited to serve on the NTCB!


Associate Professor
Texas Woman’s University
School of Occupational Therapy
Dallas, TX

Suzanne S. Schneider MS, CCC/SLP, CNT, NTMTC

Suzanne S. Schneider has practiced as an ASHA certified SLP since 1994 with an emphasis on Pediatric Feeding and Swallowing and Neonatal Care beginning in 2003. She continues with her focus on providing safe developmental progression of oral motor skills and positive feeding experiences with attention to optimizing family centered, neuroprotective, and trauma informed care. She has been involved with program development, mentoring, and ongoing education in a level IV NICU. With a love for education, she has presented locally on swallowing challenges with trach and vent dependent patients, management of craniofacial anomalies and feeding, interdisciplinary approach to pediatric dysphagia, and implementation of neonatal therapy, as well as guest lectured at both University of South Florida and University of Tampa. She is a founding member of the Tampa Bay Medical Speech Pathology Association, MESPA, a not for profit CEU and networking organization. She is Neonatal Touch and Massage Certified, Hanen Language Program Trained, Neuromuscular Reeducation of Swallowing/Biofeedback trained and a Vital Stim Certified provider.  Suzanne is inspired by the infants and caregivers she serves and desires to channel her enthusiasm to the NTCB.


NICU Speech Therapist and Pediatric Feeding Specialist
Tampa General Hospital
Tampa, FL

Johanna Siemon, MS, MPH, OTR/L, CNT, NTMTC

NTCB Co-Chair

Johanna Siemon has been an occupational therapist since 2000 and has focused her practice on care of fragile infants since 2008. She is certified in the Neonatal Oral Motor Assessment Scale (NOMAS), Neonatal Touch and Massage (NTMTC) and holds a Graduate Certificate in Low Vision Therapy. Johanna has served on the simulation question development committee for the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy. Additionally, she has presented lectures on working with children who are ventilator-dependent, infants who have feeding and swallowing difficulties, and neonatal therapy.


Womack Army Medical Center
Fort Bragg, NC

Alicia Fernandez-Fernandez, PhD, PT, DPT, CNT, DCS

Dr. Alicia Fernandez-Fernandez has been a physical therapist since 1997, with clinical practice in both Spain and the US. She has been a per-diem therapist in the level II/level III NICU at South Miami Hospital since 2003. She is an associate professor in the physical therapy department at Nova Southeastern University, where she teaches several courses including pediatrics, and leads research projects in diverse areas including pediatric and neonatal development and physical therapy interventions. She is a NANN Developmental Care Specialist and a Certified Theratogs® Fitter. Dr. Fernandez-Fernandez is also a peer reviewer for multiple professional journals including “Pediatric Physical Therapy” and has served as an item writer for the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy. Dr. Fernandez-Fernandez has presented at national and international conferences, published in peer-reviewed journals, and has co-authored a book chapter on the pediatric hip. She also teaches continuing education events on neonatal therapy and other pediatric topics.


Associate Professor and Curriculum Committee Chair
Physical Therapy Department
Nova Southeastern University, FL
Physical Therapist, NICU
South Miami Hospital, FL

Ramya Kumar, SLP, BCS-S, CNT

Ramya Kumar is an ASHA certified SLP and has been working in outpatient and inpatient pediatrics, and a Level III NICU since 2011. Prior to that she worked in Higher Education.

Ramya is passionate about creating long term developmental and mealtime successes for her patients and families. She is frequently involved in ongoing education and research in the field of Pediatric Feeding Difficulties and has presented at several local and national forums. With a commitment to whole body approaches and neurodevelopmentally supportive care, Ramya has taken coursework in trauma informed care, breast feeding medicine, Orofacial Myofunctional Disorders, Cranial Sacral Therapy and The Tummy Time Method to better serve her patients.

Ramya is a Board Certified Specialist in Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders (BCS-S) and Certified Neonatal Therapist (CNT). In addition, she has received the Developmental Care Specialist Designation through NANN and is also certified in Neonatal Touch and Massage (NTMTC).

Previous Board Members

Deborah S. Thomas,


| 2019-2021 |
Board Member
Eilish Byrne,


| 2019-2020 |
Board Member
Lisa Kleinz,


| 2014-2019 |
Inaugural Board Member
Kathryn (Kay) Thurston,


| 2014-2018 |
Inaugural Board Member
Erika Nevin Lee,


| 2014-2017 |
Inaugural Board Member
Jennie L. Jacob,


| 2014-2017 |
Inaugural Board Member
Mary Stanford,


| 2014-2017 |
Inaugural Board Member
Elizabeth Jeanson,


| 2014-2017 |
Inaugural Board Member
Jennifer Hofherr,


| 2014-2017 |
Inaugural Board Member
Jenene Craig,


| 2014-2015 |
Inaugural Board Member

Thank You

For Your Service to the NTCB!

Kati Knudsen, PT, MPT, CNT, PCS, DCS, CLE

NTCB Past Co-Chair

Kati Knudsen has practiced as a pediatric physical therapist since 1996 and as a therapist in the NICU since 1999. Kati is lead therapist for two NICUs at sister hospitals in Portland, OR. She has provided extensive education in developmental care and has obtained certifications in pediatric physical therapy, lactation education, neurodevelopmental treatment, infant massage, developmental care and transportation of children with special needs in order to better support infants and families. She has spoken locally and nationally on support for infants in the NICU and participates in Vermont Oxford Network Quality Improvement work for care of micro-preemies. Kati also sees patients in NICU follow-up clinic where she has helped to redesign care to make it more accessible for families.


Lead Therapist, NICU and In-patient Pediatrics
Providence Children’s Development Institute
Providence St Vincent Medical Center & Providence Portland Medical Center
Portland, OR

Consuelo C. Kloosterman, PT, MPT, CNT, DCS, NTMTC, CKC

Consuelo Kloosterman is an experienced pediatric physical therapist with clinical expertise in the NICU for the past 25 years; dedicating her work in a level III NICU. She completed her Neurodevelopmental Treatment (NDT)/Bobath Certification training in 1998. In 2016, she was awarded with Developmental Care Specialist designation from the National Association Neonatal Nurses (NANN) and is certified in the Neonatal Oral Motor Assessment Scale (NOMAS), Neonatal Touch and Massage (NTMTC), and as a Kangaroo Care Caregiver and Consultant (CKC). Consuelo has also received training in the Prechtl’s General Movement Assessment (GMA) as well as the Newborn Behavioral Observation (NBO).

Consuelo’s main area of interest is the promotion of parental attachment from the very early start of the family’s journey in the NICU, and she continuously presents lectures to staff members to improve developmental outcomes of fragile infants.

Consuelo holds a Bachelor’s Degree in physical therapy from the Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina (UBA) and her Master’s Degree from Florida International University (FIU) Miami, Florida. She currently resides in Boca Raton, Florida with her husband and three children.


Dana Hobby has worked as an SLP in both outpatient and inpatient pediatric rehabilitation and in a level III NICU since 2003. She is actively involved in neurodevelopmental follow-up clinic. Her career has been focused on implementation of developmentally supportive and family centered care along with continual collaboration with and education for NICU staff. She is NOMAS trained and is a Certified Lactation Counselor through the Academy of Lactation Practice and Policy. She is a certified Neonatal Touch and Massage Therapist and has achieved designation as a Developmental Care Specialist through NANN. She has presented locally and previously worked with Powers Medical Devices as a clinical specialist for the Pacifier Activated Lullaby (PAL) system.

Louisa Ferrara, PhD, CCC-SLP, BCS-S, CNT

Dr. Ferrara is a Pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist who has worked with neonates, medically-fragile infants and children with a myriad of complex medical/developmental needs since 2009. She has worked in numerous pediatric settings, most recently as a Program Manager and Specialist in Feeding and Swallowing Disorders at NYU-Winthrop Hospital in New York where she developed the NICU Feeding Program in this Level III NICU and continues to serve as a valuable research team member. Dr. Ferrara is an assistant professor at Molloy College on Long Island, NY, where she strives to shape the careers of future clinicians in the field of speech-language pathology.Dr. Ferrara completed her Doctorate degree in Speech and Language Pathology in May of 2018 from Adelphi University and received her Board Certification in Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders in 2014 through ASHA. Dr. Ferrara has published research focused on the swallowing mechanism in neonates under various conditions as well as the use of VFSS and FEES as diagnostic tools in peer-reviewed journals. She lectures nationally on various topics related to feeding readiness in preterm infants, dysphagia management, swallowing-respiratory coordination and early feeding milestone acquisition.


Assistant Professor, Speech-Language Pathology
Molloy College
Long Island, NY

Jordan Starr

Jordan Starr is a mother of twin micro-preemies born at 28 weeks who faced significant medical challenges during and after their NICU stay. She strives to learn about the development of premature infants in order to support not only her own children but those who experience a NICU stay. Through early intervention with Frist Steps and sub-specialty visits she and her husband have successfully helped their twins makes steps to catching up to their peers.
Jordan has been instrumental in the development of a support group for NICU moms in the Southeast Region of Missouri. In her Facebook Group “It’s a Preemie Thing,” she is a constant source of motivation and a great resource for NICU moms. In addition to support through social media, Jordan leads live support groups and invite current and past NICU moms to attend. The COVID-19 pandemic has restricted this live support group; however, Jordan remains continually active, encouraging moms to share their greatest memories and accomplishments. Her vision is to provide a safe space for other parents to share, ask questions, or just find some support during and after their stay. She now has two lead mentors, three graduate mentors, and 65 members including nurses, therapists, graduates and in patient families.
Jordan has also collected over 2,000 books that serve as donations to NICU families. She recognized the benefit of reading in the NICU to promote early language development. Not all parents instinctively know how to talk to their babies. By providing them with books, she has provided the parents a way to stay involved and active in their infant’s development.
She is a leader and an advocate. She is a kind soul with a huge heart. She looks forward to using her skills to serve on the NTCB.
Autism Services Program Manager
Easterseals Midwest Autism Services
Cape Girardeau, Mo

Katie Reginato Cascamo

Katie Reginato Cascamo is a social benefit entrepreneur, speaker, consultant, researcher, and educator. With more than 20 years of organizational and leadership experience, she guides executive leaders on how to utilize an interpersonal approach to improving organizational culture. Focusing on an interdisciplinary, values-based approach known as Servant-Leadership, she teaches organizational leaders how to grow those being served, and also serve and empower those who have been traditionally underserved. Recognizing that systems across society don’t operate in isolated silos, she also works collaboratively with leaders across industries to discover broader solutions to larger societal issues.

From building her own business in the insurance sector to teaching people how to empower themselves and those within their organizations, she infuses her lived experiences into all aspects of her work. Through her own consulting business, Courageous Steps, Katie strives to help organizations encourage growth and discover solutions through an inclusive, employee-focused approach.

While her experience is in building organizations, Katie is keenly interested in influencing social systems change and investing her time towards educating and developing the next generation of leaders. She enjoys wearing multiple hats – educator, researcher, entrepreneur, mother – and brings all those experiences into the classroom. She has a Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership (MAOL) with a concentration in Servant-Leadership and is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Leadership Studies at Gonzaga University.

Cape Girardeau, Mo