Speech Therapists

Rosemary Burke

I have experience as a First Steps provider and in a clinic/hospital setting seeing children from birth thru school-aged. I am credentialed as an Early Intervention Specialist and am also a member of the Hancock County Evaluation Determination Team. Masters of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology. Specific experience in the following areas: oral-motor deficits, Down Syndrome, developmental language delay (expressive/receptive language), Apraxia, CP, cleft palate, Autism Spectrum disorder, sensory integration disorder, seizure disorders and other neurological disorders. I use a play-based therapy approach to encourage speech/language development. I am the mother of two young children and understand the importance of family participation. Parents and caregivers are encouraged to participate in sessions for maximum carryover of goals. I have experience using sign language, pictures (PECS), and other forms of augmentative communication, as well as sensory integration techniques to encourage communication.

Jen Fish

As the mother of three young children, I understand the importance of effective communication within the family. I have experience working with children with a wide variety of disorders and skill levels--including speech and language delay/disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorder, feeding issues, trach and vent dependent patients, hearing loss, and sensory issues. I am also conversationally proficient in American Sign Language. Please feel free to contact me with any questions that you may have

Sarah Hodson

I received my Master's degree in speech-language pathology from Indiana University in 2002. After graduation, I spent four years working within the preschool setting in and around Bloomington, IN. I provided services in both developmental and language-based preschool programs as well as in community daycares. I began providing early intervention services through First Steps in July 2006. I have experience with speech and language delays/disorders ranging from mild to severe. I have experience with children with apraxia, down syndrome, autism, cerebral palsy, mental handicaps, as well as a variety of other disorders which affect communication development. I currently live and provide services in the Bloomington area, and my husband and I have two young children of our own. As a parent, I know what it's like to want the best for your children, and I strive to help each child on my caseload meet his or her potential.

Kathy Kessler

My father was born in 1928 with the umbilical cord wrapped around his neck.  He had dysarthric speech as the result of Cerebral Palsy.  For much of my early life, I facilitated communication for him with inconsiderate clerks and people in the outside world who didn’t even try to understand him due to his unusual speech patterns.  They seemed to write him off as a person of below average intelligence.  I made the decision to transfer to Michigan State University to pursue an undergraduate degree in Audiology and Speech Sciences after realizing my interest in working with people with communication challenges generally and with hearing loss in particular.  Graduating with my B.A. in 1980, I entered Purdue University, where I completed dual Masters degrees in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology in 1983.  I completed dual clinical fellowship years, and continue to hold AHSA Certificates of Clinical Competence in both fields to the present day.  My Indiana State Licenses in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology have allowed me to work as a diagnostic/dispensing Audiologist and a speech-language pathologist working with children and adults with hearing and hearing loss at the Indianapolis Speech and Hearing Center (1983 to 1986), a diagnostic/programming audiologist and aural (re)habilitation specialist with the Cochlear Implant Teams at Methodist Hospital Indianapolis and Riley Hospital for Children (1986 to1993), a Speech-Language Pathologist specializing in therapy with children with hearing loss in the Speech Department of Riley Hospital (1993 to 2000),  and as an Early Intervention Specialist with Indiana First Steps (2000 to present).  Currently, I work with children from 0 to 12 with communication delay, many of whom are considered to be “late talkers”.  Many children on my caseload have hearing loss and communicate orally or using simultaneous communication.  Early in my career, I received beginner level training and brief experience using Cued Speech.  I have taken many courses in Signing Exact English, and am conversationally fluent at the early education level.



Years of experience with 0-3:  31 Exclusively 0-3:  14

Years of experience with deaf and hard of hearing children:  31

Languages and fluency level:  Conversationally fluent in Signing Exact English

Degree/s:  B.A. (Audiology and Speech Sciences); M.S. (Audiology and  Speech Science)

Certifications: CCC in Speech-Language Pathology; CCC in Audiology; 

IN State Licensure in Audiology ; IN State Licensure in Speech-Language Pathology

Provide Service           Evenings: at my discretion                   Weekends:  at my discretion


Sarah Dobbins

I will provide a wide range of individualized speech-language services to meet your child's needs as well as provide home and family education. I am able to provide therapy for those children with oral motor difficulties and have attended courses on this topic, as well as the autism spectrum disorder, Down Syndrome, and general speech and language delays. I am available to speak with caregivers or parents before a service provider is chosen. I am also the parent of two young children. I look forward to meeting you and your child and will work to ensure that your experience in First Steps is a positive one! Please note for the 46140 zip code, available to serve only for areas south of US 40 and west of SR9.

Megan Nugent

My name is Megan Nugent, and I have been working as a speech therapist with First Steps for the past 4 years, since I graduated from Indiana University with my Master's degree in Speech-Language Pathology. I greatly enjoy working with children of all communication levels and, and I feel that therapy should be motivating and fun. I have provided therapy services for numerous children with various speech and language difficulties, as well as diagnoses such as Autism, PDD-NOS, Childhood Apraxia, Down's Syndrome, and oral-motor/feeding/swallowing difficulties. I strongly believe in involving and educating the families regarding their child's diagnosis, treatment plan, and progress. I am also a certified Beckman Oral-Motor Therapist and a member of the American Speech and Language Association.

Rya Meo

Skills:Treatment of speech, language, and swallowing disorders with the pediatric population. Training: Bachelors of Science and Masters of Arts in Speech Language Pathology from Ball State University. CPR certified; pediatric feeding and swallowing seminars; oral apraxia seminar; autism spectrum disorders seminars; language disorders seminar. Comfortable: Pediatric speech and language disorders, pediatric swallowing problems, Down Syndrome, cleft palate, autism spectrum disorders, developmental delays,and cerebral palsey. I like to try a variety of approaches to stimulate communication in children. I use simple signing, communication pictures, and traditional modeling techniques. I also really enjoy working with Spanish speaking children and families. I am only available on Mondays and Wednesdays.

Shantel Robinson

My experience includes language delay, cleft palate, autism spectrum disorder, articulation/phonology disorder, and Down Syndrome. I enjoy working with young children and providing play-based therapy. I am a preschool speech-language pathologist at a local school.

Monica Heltsley

I am the mother of four. I have extensive experience in speech, language and swallowing treatment with all ages and in a variety of settings. I believe that the 0 to 3 population is best served in their home environment so that their families have direct input and benefit from the services. In this way, the family becomes the child's best therapist. I have experience with children with developmental delays, cleft palate, Down's syndrome, seizure disorder, Cerebral Palsy, prematurity, ADHD, autism, speech sound difficulties, language delay. I have experience with feeding tubes and in designing augmentative communication systems. In addition to my Indiana Speech Pathology license, I hold the Certificate of Clinical Competency in Speech-Language Pathology from the American Speech, Language and Hearing Association, and an Indiana Teaching license.

Kate Morris

In all of my work experiences treating young children with speech/language delays, I have strongly believed that a child makes the most gains in his/her communication when those closest to him consciously support his development. Over the past two years, I have become a mother and have gained an unexpected and humbling perspective on the ups and downs of parenting. As a therapist of young children, I believe it is my job to teach and discover effective communication for each child. More importantly, it is a priority for me to provide support, resources and encouragement for the caretaker while modeling ways to enhance interactions during play, singing, reading and everyday routines. I have experienced success using signed English, visual support systems, augmentative communication devices, and various methods to encourage spoken language, all within a playful context. In my most recent position, I gained extensive experience working with children with autism spectrum disorder, their families and teachers.




Shannon Bothwell

I recieve both my B.S and M.S in Speech-language pathology from Indiana State University in Terre Haute, IN. I have experience providing pediatric services in school, clinic, hospital and home settings. I also have specialized experince in Augmentive and Alternative Communication (AAC). I love serving the birth to 3 population because it is an amazing time of growth and development. It also allows me the opportunity to use natural and FUN treatment methods like no other age group! I believe that speech and language skills provide a child with power; power to change the course of his/her environment and to make his/her inner world known to others. I am passionate about my work as a Speech-Language Pathologist because it allows me to help children and their families regain the power of communication!

Joey Box

My name is Joey Box! I am a part-time speech-language pathologist with PediPlay and specialize in working with children birth to five years of age with language difficulties, phonological disorders, and articulation disorders. I am also a speech-language pathologist with Beech Grove City Schools working with the preschool and 4th, 5th, and 6th-grade populations. This is my fourth year as a speech therapist and I look forward to the coming years working with all pediatric populations.


I obtained my undergraduate and graduate speech-language pathology degrees from Ball State University. I also obtained a bachelor's degree in gerontology and two minors in Spanish and Sociology. I have also volunteered with the Indiana Speech-Language Hearing Association (ISHA) since 2013. I am currently the VP of Professional Development and I am a part of the Nominating Committee.

Natalie Scott

Since graduating with my masters degree in communication disorders in 1999, I have a wide variety of experiences helping individuals and their families achieve success while developing and implementing communication and swallowing strategies. As a mother of a young child with motor planning difficulties, I understand the challenges families and young children face when communication is a daily struggle. I have knowledge working with children with a variety of disorders and skill levels which include Autism Spectrum Disorder, speech and language delay/disorder, cerebral palsy, feeding issues including severe dysphagia, tracheostomies, Passy-Muir speaking valves, other forms of augmentative communication, and behavioral strategies to improve social language skills.  I look forward to working with you to help your child achieve success with First Steps.

Megan McKee

I am originally from Southern California, but became a Hoosier when I received my Bachelor’s degree in Speech and Hearing Sciences from Indiana University-Bloomington. I completed my M.S. in Speech-Language Pathology at Vanderbilt University. I am passionate about helping young children find their voices through play-based therapy. I believe parents and caregivers play an important role in speech and language development, especially at this young age. I have provided services in hospital, clinic, and home settings. I have experience working with children with cleft palate, autism spectrum disorders, childhood apraxia of speech, expressive/receptive language delays, oral motor/feeding issues, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, and other syndromes. I look forward to working with you and your family to make your First Steps experience as rewarding as possible!

Andrea Wortkoetter

Hello! My name is Andrea Wortkoetter and I am a recent graduate from Ball State University.  I received both my Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts degree from Ball State University. I have gained experience working with children birth to three in an outpatient clinic setting through evaluations and treatment in the areas of language, articulation, augmentative and alternative communication, and social communication. Additionally, I have assisted in neonatal intensive care unit feeding evaluations and treatment and completed research in the areas of child language and diet modification. I currently live in Greenfield and will provide services to children in this area. I enjoy seeing the rapid growth and change in young children, which is why I have chosen early intervention.

Morgan Doelling

Hello! My name is Morgan Doelling and I have been working as a Speech therapist for the past two years. I work part time at PediPlay because I also enjoy treating adults with acquired speech-language and swallowing impairments in a sub-acute rehab and long term care setting. I completed my undergraduate education at Indiana University in communication sciences and disorders and I received my M.S. in Speech Pathology from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. During my education, I was able to experience working first hand with children and their families in the clinical setting as well as in a research lab that focuses on discovering how young children learn new words! I loved this experience and following it, I gained an appreciation for the importance of using the latest research in my practice! I have experience working with young children with complex communication needs and assisting their families in finding the best Augmentative and Assistive Communication systems (AAC) for their child. I completed 4 years of course work in American Sign Language, and I use basic sign language, picture communication exchange communication, or other communication modalities with each child to find whatever system works best for each individual, be it speech or another form of communication. I have worked with children with developmental delays, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Down’s syndrome, speech/language delays and disorders, as well as other syndromes. I strongly believe in being partners with the families from day one, seeing parents implement strategies into daily life to help their children communication on one of the highlights of our profession in my opinion! I am also a member of the American Speech and Language Association.

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