Our Team

Executive Team

Executive Director

Sara Nall, M.Ed.

snall@mitchells-place.com

Sara Nall joined Mitchell’s Place in 2016 and currently serves as the Executive Director. Sara received her bachelor’s from Auburn University and holds a master’s from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) in Special Education with an emphasis in Behavioral Disorders.

Sara has over 30 years of experience rooted in special education. Her journey started as a special educator at Engel Day Treatment Center at UAB, then she transitioned to a self-contained classroom for children with behavior disorders in Birmingham City Schools which lead her to Mountain Brook High School where she taught for more than 25 years.  

Sara’s favorite part of working at Mitchell’s Place is witnessing the small miracles our children achieve every day.

Director of Applied Behavior Analysis

Lauren Graham, M.A., BCBA, LBA

lgraham@mitchells-place.com

Lauren Graham joined Mitchell’s Place in 2017 and serves as the Director of our Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) Program, which includes Teach Me, ABA Outpatient services, ELP ABA, School Consultation, and MP Southside. Lauren received her master’s degree from the University of West Florida in Comprehensive Exceptional Student Education with an emphasis in Applied Behavior Analysis. She became a Board Certified assistant Behavior Analyst in 2012, a Board Certified Behavior Analyst received in 2015, and her license as a Behavior Analyst in the state of Alabama in 2017. She is also certified in Professional Crisis Management.

Lauren has experience in a variety of settings, clientele, and developmental disabilities over the past 11 years in the field of ABA. Her interests lie in early intervention, problem behavior reduction, verbal behavior, and adaptive skill training, which is why Mitchell’s Place has been such a great fit. Outside of ABA, Lauren enjoys spending time with her family, hiking, and being on the water.

Director of Advancement

Kristy Henry, MBA

khenry@mitchells-place.com

Kristy Henry joined Mitchell’s Place in 2021 and currently serves as the Director of Advancement. Kristy received her bachelor’s from North Carolina State University and holds a master’s from Auburn University. Kristy has over 10 years of experience in fundraising, analytics, and events management. She began her career in the advancement field in athletics development at the Wolfpack Club (NC State), followed by the Hurricane Club (University of Miami). Kristy then transitioned to focus on annual giving as Director for Annual Giving at Barry University (Miami) and most recently, as the Director of the Annual Fund for Oglethorpe University (Atlanta).

Kristy is excited to be a part of the Mitchell’s Place team and hopes to work in increasing funding that will further the organizational mission. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, college sports, being outdoors, reading, and spending time with family.

Director of Billing

Darrell Fitzgerald, CPAR

dfitzgerald@mitchells-place.com

Darrell Fitzgerald joined Mitchell’s Place in 2012, and currently serves as the Director of Billing. Darrell received his Associate Degree from American Public University System, and is certified in Patient Accounting through the Healthcare Financial Management Association. He has over 30 years of experience in Healthcare Billing, Collections, and Revenue Cycle Management. 

Prior to joining the team, Darrell managed billing for 16 hospitals, in 6 states across the southeast. He brings extensive experience with healthcare analytics, systems, training, billing and collections.

Director of Clinical Psychology

Laura K. Hansen, PhD

lhansen@mitchells-place.com

Laura K. Hansen, PhD is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist who joined Mitchell’s Place in 2020. She received her bachelor’s from Centre College in in Psychology and French and a doctorate degree from the University of Southern Mississippi in n Clinical Psychology in 2019. Her dissertation research examined factors and correlates of knowledge of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in parents, teachers, and medical trainees.

Dr. Hansen completed extensive training in both general and pediatric psychology, as well as specialized supervision in the assessment and treatment of autism spectrum disorder and developmental disabilities. She completed her pre-doctoral internship at Indiana University School of Medicine and a postdoctoral fellowship at Children’s Mercy Hospital. She is a member of the American Psychological Association and the International Society for Autism Research.

Director of Education 

Samantha Pate, M.Ed

spate@mitchells-place.com

Samantha Pate joined Mitchell’s Place in 2006 and currently serves as the Education Director. Samantha received her bachelor’s from Auburn University in Human Development and Family Studies and holds a master’s from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) in Special Education. She also holds a certificate from Auburn University in Early Intervention and is currently pursuing a certification to be a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst from Florida Tech.

Since joining the team, Samantha has held many positions ranging from lead teacher in the Early Learning Program, Teach Me Therapist, assistant teacher, extended day staff and floater, but she moved into the Director of Education position in 2017.

Sama’s favorite part of working at Mitchell’s Place is knowing she is a part of a community of professionals committed to improving the lives of children with ASD.

Director of Related Services

Becky Weldon, Occupational Therapist M.S., OTR/L

bweldon@mitchells-place.com

Rebecca “Becky” Weldon joined Mitchell’s Place in 2018 and currently serves as an Occupational Therapist. Becky received her bachelor’s from the University of Montevallo in Kinesiology and holds a master’s from the University of South Alabama in Occupational Therapy.

Her certifications and credentials include: a certification in the state of Alabama as an occupational therapist, a National Board of Certification in Occupational Therapy and is licensed in general occupational therapy. Becky has experience working in pediatric outpatient school, and early intervention settings and has received training in Handwriting Without Tears curriculum, NDT, Sensory integration and feeding. She currently works with the Teach Me program and outpatient services.

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) Team

Assistant Director of ABA

Sarah McIntosh, Outpatient ABA, BCaBA, LABA

smcintosh@mitchells-place.com

Sarah McIntosh is the Assistant Director of ABA at Mitchell’s Place. She began working at Mitchell’s Place in 2013 and has served in various capacities during her time, such as an Assistant Teacher in the Early Learning Program, a Registered behavior Technician in the ABA Outpatient Program, and the Supervisor of the ABA Outpatient Program. In 2019 she completed her Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst certification and was licensed in the state of Alabama. Sarah’s varied Experience has increased her understanding and enjoyment of working alongside children who have been diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder and their families to accomplish meaningful outcomes in their lives. She deeply values the potential in each Mitchell’s Place client and is honored to play a small role in their unique journeys.

When she is not at work, you can find Sarah enjoying time with her favorite people: her husband, their children and mini-Aussie!

School Consultant

Emilie Stahlhut, M.Ed., BCBA, LBA

estahlhut@mitchells-place.com

Emilie Stahlhut has been a part of the Mitchell’s Place family since 2011. She started at Mitchell’s Place as an assistant teacher in the preschool program where she gained interest in the field of ABA. Emilie gained further experience in the field by working as an early intervention therapist providing focused and comprehensive ABA services to children with autism. She completed her undergraduate studies at The University of Alabama in Elementary Education in 2011 and received her master’s degree in Early Childhood Special Education  from UAB in 2018. In 2014, she received her certification as a Board Certified assistant Behavior Analyst and received her certification as a Board Certified Behavior Analyst and Licensed Behavior Analyst in the state of Alabama in 2018. In addition, she is a certified instructor in Professional Crisis Management. Emilie is dedicated to supporting the mission and values of Mitchell’s Place by providing evidence-based treatments to improve the lives of families and individuals diagnosed with autism and other related disorders. her goal is to provide every child with the necessary skills to communicate their wants and needs and enhance their overall quality of life. In her free time, Emilie enjoys spending time outdoors and exploring Birmingham with her friends and dog.

Teach Me Supervisor

Katie Bolling, Teach Me, M.A., BCBA, LBA

knorris@mitchells-place.com

Katie Norris is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) and Licensed Behavior Analyst (LBA) in the state of Alabama. She joined Mitchell’s Place in the fall of 2019. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Alabama and her master’s in Exceptional Student education with an emphasis in Applied Behavior Analysis from the University if West Florida. Katie has eight years of experience working with typical children and those diagnosed with Autism Spectrum disorders, ADD/ADHD, and other developmental disabilities. She began her career serving children with ASD at The Learning Tree in Mobile, AL in 2013. Over the years, she gained experience working as a 1:1 therapist, social worker in a Head Start Program, and behavior consultant in schools.

Katie values collaborating with the interdisciplinary team at Mitchell’s place and the families of the clients’. She is passionate about functional communication training and teaching independent living skills. In her free time she enjoys spending time with her husband and dog, traveling to new places, and watching live music.

ABA Supervisor

Haley Haggard, Teach Me, BCBA, LBA

hhaggard@mitchells-place.com

Haley Haggard joined Mitchell’s Place in 2020 and currently serves as a supervisor for the Teach Me program. Haley received her bachelor’s of Nursing and master’s in Applied Behavior Analysis from Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee.  Her credentials include a certification as Board-Certified Behavior Analyst and a Licensed Behavior Analyst in the state of Alabama, both earned in 2020.

Haley’s favorite part of working at Mitchell’s Place is witnessing and celebrating the small victories that each child makes!

ABA ELP Supervisor

Necia Mathews, Early Learning ABA – B.A., BCBA, LBA

nmathews@mitchells-place.com

Necia Mathews joined Mitchell’s Place in 2007 and currently serves as a supervisor of ABA therapy for the Early Learning Program. Necia received her bachelor’s from Auburn University. Her credentials include a certification as a Board-Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst (BCaBA) received in 2014 and a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) received in 2019.

Necia’s favorite part of working at Mitchell’s Place is watching the children grow and learn!

Supervisor of Mitchell’s Place Southside

Krysta Bass, BCBA, LBA

kbass@mitchells-place.com

Originally from Chicago, Krysta Bass is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst with experience working with individuals with autism from ages 18 months to 55+. She discovered ABA upon completing her bachelor’s degree at Northwestern University after seeing the success, family support, and change it brought to those in need. Krysta continued her studies at the University of West Florida where she received her Master’s degree in ABA. Her passions include increasing access to high quality, individualized therapy services to those who may otherwise not have access to them as well as caregiver and functional communication training.

Outside of Mitchell’s Place, you can find Krysta spending time with her husband and dog trying new restaurants and breweries around Birmingham.

Teach Me Therapist

  • Lauren Davis
  • Amanda Fitzgerald
  • Shelby Luna
  • Abbi Thompson
  • Elizabeth McGowin
  • Carrie Pursley

  • Jennifer Mayerhofer
  • Hannah Schneider
  • Sarah Smeraglia
  • Alexandria Tuggle
  • Bayli Strickland
  • Isabell Lacey

MP Southside Therapist

  • Chase Kimbrough
  • Theresa Scott
  • Gabriela Prieto
  • Whitton Ward

ABA Floaters

  • Anna Harker
  • Abigail Santos

Outpatient ABA Therapist

  • Ashley Waltz
  • Sarah Pemberton
  • Hannah Vickers

Early Learning Program Therapist – ABA

  • Kinlee Aviles
  • Morgan Broome

Early Learning Preschool (ELP) Team

Lead Teacher, Ladybug Classroom

Melissa Pittman, B.S.

mpittman@mitchells-place.com

Melissa Pittman joined Mitchell’s Place in 2020 and currently serves as the Lead Teacher for the Ladybug classroom, ages 2-3, in the Early Learning Preschool. Melissa received her bachelor’s of science from Birmingham-Southern College in Elementary and Special Education. Melissa also worked at the YWCA Central Alabama’s Youth Development Center prior to joining the Mitchell’s Place family. 

Melissa’s favorite part of working at Mitchell’s Place is working with children and connecting with the community to create lifelong learners. 

Lead Teacher, Butterfly Classroom

Kelly Rice, M.Ed.

krice@mitchells-place.com

Kelly Rice joined Mitchell’s Place in 2015 and currently serves as the Lead Teacher for the Butterfly classroom, ages 3-4, in the Early Learning Preschool. Kelly received her bachelor’s in Collaborative Education and holds a master’s in Early Childhood Special Education, both from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). Kelly has over 10 years of experience in education including: elementary special education, special education church ministry, and early childhood special education.

Kelly’s favorite part of working at Mitchell’s Place is seeing her students grow academically and socially in the classroom!

Lead Teacher, Songbirds Classroom

Yolanda Rogers, B.A

yrodgers@mitchells-place.com

Yolanda “Yoyo” Rodgers joined Mitchell’s Place in 2007 and currently serves as the Lead Teacher for the Songbird classroom, ages 4-5, in the Early Learning Preschool. Yolanda received her bachelor’s from the University of Montevallo in Child and Family Studies and is currently pursuing a master’s from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) in Early Childhood Special Education. Yolanda has over 10 years of experience in early childhood education and is instrumental in the expansion of Mitchell’s Place.

Lead Teacher, Flamingo Classroom

Glenda Grbac, B.A., M.A. and RBT

glandaverde@mitchells-place.com

Glenda Grbac joined Mitchell’s Place in 2016 and currently serves as the Lead Teacher for the Flamingo classroom, ages 5-6, in the Early Learning Preschool. Glenda received her bachelor’s in Psychology and holds a master’s in Early Childhood Special Education, both from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). Her other credentials include her certification as a Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) received in 2016. Glenda has held several positions within Mitchell’s Place, ranging from a teacher’s assistant, a Teach Me therapist and an ABA Outpatient therapist.

Glenda’s favorite part of working at Mitchell’s Place is getting to see the students grow academically and socially every single day. She loves teaching them as well as learning from them!

ELP Classroom Assistants:

  • Megan Barnett
  • Katherine Boyd
  • Emily Davis
  • Melisa Eatman
  • Ashley Marques

ELP Classroom Assistants:

  • Carley Corbin
  • Annie Wyatt
  • Jessie Hickey
  • Autumn Kersey

Occupational Therapy (OT) Team

Occupational Therapist

Melissa Van Kooten, M.S., OTR/L, CTRS

mvankooten@mitchells-place.com

Melissa Van Kooten jointed Mitchell’s Place in 2021. She is a licensed and registered Occupational Therapist, as well as a certified therapeutic recreation specialist. She holds her bachelor’s degree from the University of South Alabama in Recreational Therapy, and she received her Master of Science in Occupational Therapy degree from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2020.

Melissa enjoys cultivating fun, therapeutic activities to help children achieve their greatest potential.

Occupational Therapist

Lauren Comer, M.S., OTR/L

lcomer@mitchells-place.com

Lauren Comer joined Mitchell’s Place in 2020 and currently serves as an Occupational Therapist. Lauren received her bachelor’s from the University of North Alabama in Chemistry and holds a master’s from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in Occupational Therapy.

Her certifications and credentials include: a certification in the state of Alabama as an Occupational Therapist, a National Board of Certification in Occupational Therapy, and is licensed in general occupational therapy. Lauren has experience working in both pediatric and adult inpatient rehabilitation settings. She is currently working with outpatient services.

Lauren is passionate about providing family-centered care while helping children continue to learn, grow, and play in a caring and loving environment

Occupational Therapist

Taylor Quarles, M.S., OTR/L

tquarles@mitchells-place.com

Taylor Quarles joined Mitchell’s Place in 2021 and serves as a licensed and registered Occupational Therapist. She holds her bachelor’s degree in Healthcare Management and Master of Science in Occupational Therapy- both from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Taylor has experience in mental health across the lifespan as well as outpatient pediatric therapy services.

Taylor is passionate about motivating kids to participate in their most meaningful and functional daily lives.

Speech Team

Speech-Language Pathologist

Abigail Wood, M.S., CCC-SLP

awood@mitchells-place.com

Abigail Wood joined Mitchell’s Place in 2019 and currently serves as a Speech-Language Pathologist. Abbie received her bachelor’s in Communication Science and Disorders from the University of Tennessee and holds a master’s in Speech Language Pathology from University of Tennessee Health Science Center. Abbie has over two years of experience in providing speech therapy for children with speech and language impairment.

Her certifications and credentials include: a license in the state of Alabama as a speech-language pathologist and certification through ASHA. In additional her credentials, Abbie gained experience through her work as an SLP in the public school system specializing in the preschool classroom, pediatric private practice.

Abbie’s favorite part of working at Mitchell’s Place is working with families to help their kiddos realize the power of communication so they can express themselves to friends and loved ones.

Speech-Language Pathologist

Addison Rentschler, M.S., CCC-SLP

arentschler@mitchells-place.com

Addison Thompson joined Mitchell’s Place in 2018 and currently serves as Speech-Language Pathologist. Addison received her bachelor’s from the University of Mississippi in Communicative Sciences and Disorders and holds a master’s from the University of Mississippi in Speech-Language Pathology.

Her certifications and credentials include: a certification of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language Hearing Association and is licensed in the state of Alabama and in the state of Florida. Addison has experience working in a public-school system as well as a pediatric private practice setting. She currently provides speech and language services to children in the Early Learning Program, Teach Me program and outpatient settings. She also leads weekly social groups in the Early Learning Program classrooms and after school Social Skills group (ASAP) for the 2nd-5th graders.

Addison favorite part of working at Mitchell’s Pace is getting to know the kids and their families.

Speech-Language Pathologist

Kelsey McCallum, M.S., CCC-SLP

kmccallum@mitchells-place.com

Kelsey McCallum joined Mitchell’s Place in 2021 and currently serves as a Speech-Language Pathologist. Kelsey received both her bachelor’s and her master’s in Speech-Language Pathology from The University of Alabama.

Her certifications and credentials include: a Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language Hearing Association and is licensed as an SLP through the state of Alabama. Kelsey has experience working in the public school system, pediatric private practice, and hospital settings.

Kelsey is passionate about making therapy a fun, memorable, and positive experience for her clients and their families.

Speech Language Pathologist

Meredith Koch, M.S., CCC-SLP

mkoch@mitchells-place.com

Meredith Koch graduated from Samford University with a Master of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology in 2017.  Meredith’s clinical training and practice has been primarily in the area of pediatrics, including working with children who have autism spectrum disorder.  Her certifications and credentials include: the Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language Hearing Association and she is licensed in the state of Alabama for the practice of speech-language pathology. Additionally, Meredith is a trained Sequential-Oral-Sensory (SOS) feeding therapist with experience in pediatric feeding and swallowing disorders, LSVT LOUD certified, Orton Gillingham certified, and is a trained dyslexia evaluator.

Meredith approaches treatment as a partnership with families.  She works collaboratively with families to maximize the child’s potential, building on the strengths of the child and the family.

Psychiatry Team

Psychiatrist

Donald Paoletti, M.D.

dpaoletti@mitchells-place.com

Dr. Donald Paoletti joined Mitchell’s Place is 2005 and currently serves as the facility’s Psychiatrist. Dr. Paoletti is a fully trained and licensed physician, who has completed specialized training in general psychiatry and subspecialty training in pediatric psychiatry. He is a graduate of the Medical University of South Carolina and the University of Maryland. Dr. Paoletti is certified in general psychiatry as well as child and adolescent psychiatry by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. He is an Active member of the American Psychiatric Association, American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) and several other professional organizations. He is currently serving as the President of the Alabama Regional Council of the AACAP. 

Dr. Paoletti started his private practice after five years of academia at the Department of Psychiatry of the University of Alabama in Birmingham. He also provides clinical services as a consultant at Psychiatry Associates, P.C., the Eastside Mental Health Center in Birmingham, Catholic Family Services, and the Jefferson-Blount-St. Clair Counties Mental Health Authority.

Administration Team

Administrative Coordinator

Codie Malone

Billing Administrative Assistant

Tim Kring

Billing and Authorization Specialist

Lindsay Johnson

Intake Coordinator

Mikal Pickard

Advancement Team

Associate Director of Advancement

Mirandy McClellan