Meet The Cardinal Center Team

Each one of our dedicated staff members at The Cardinal Center for Behavior Analysis is committed to providing you with the highest standard of service. Our Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) and Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTs) are highly trained and experienced, and together, we build a positive and engaging environment to ensure that your child and your family have the best possible experience possible.

Leadership

Ashley Brightwell, Clinic Director

Ashley Brightwell

Director of Clinic Operations, BCBA

Ashley Brightwell earned her undergraduate degree in psychology from Penn State University, the Behrend College, in Erie, PA, then earned her master’s degree in Applied Behavior Analysis at Ball State University in 2015. She co-founded The Cardinal Center for Behavior Analysis in 2016, working as a behavior technician until passing her BCBA exam in August 2017. In June 2020, Ashley became the Director of Clinic Operations and now oversees day to day client operations, client services, and staff management.

“Families often come to us feeling anxious and uncertain about the future, so it’s truly amazing to watch them see their child’s improvement and growth. Just knowing that we played a part in that is very rewarding.”

Lindsay Watkins, Director of Strategic Operations

Lindsay Watkins

Director of Strategic Operations, BCBA

Lindsay Watkins completed her undergraduate degree at Hope College in Holland, Michigan, where she studied special education before teaching middle school at Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools. In 2020, she started at The Cardinal Center for Behavior Analysis administering ABA therapy as a Registered Behavior Technician before becoming a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. She now serves as the Director of Strategic Operations and heads sales, marketing, and administration for The Cardinal Center.

“Supporting our team as they facilitate growth in our clients and with our families is extremely rewarding. Seeing children coming in everyday, ready and happy to learn, and connecting with staff is incredible.”

Lindsay Watkins, Director of Strategic Operations

Jessica Woodford

Director of Finance

Jessica Woodford is the Finance Manager at The Cardinal Center. She attended the University of Kansas and received her Bachelor’s degree. She has been working in business and finance/accounting for over 30 years and has been working in the behavior healthcare for the past four years. Since September of 2020, Jessica has been a key member of the Cardinal team, as she is always eager to help advocate for families who have any financial questions or concerns.

“I enjoy using my experience to help support the success of The Cardinal Center so that we can continue to be a reliable resource for children and families in the community who need access to high quality ABA services.”

Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs)

DENNY CLARK, Lead BCBA

Denny Clark

Lead BCBA

Denny Clark earned his B.S. in psychology from Appalachian State University, and graduated from Arizona State University with his Master of Education in Applied Behavior Analysis. He has provided behavior analysis services across a wide variety of settings, and specializes in verbal behavior, staff training, and the development of behavioral interventions for reduction of problem behaviors. Denny started at Cardinal in November of 2020 as our Lead BCBA and BCBA Student Supervisor.

“What I find most rewarding is seeing our clients grow and acquire the skills they need to be successful.”

JONATHAN SHAW, BCBA

Jonathan Shaw

BCBA

Jonathan Shaw earned a master’s degree in clinical psychology with a concentration in Applied Behavior Analysis from the University of North Carolina Wilmington. He completed his graduate internship at the Murdoch Developmental Center under the supervision of Dr. Ruth Hurst. After starting at The Cardinal Center for Behavior Analysis in February 2021, Jonathan assists with program development, program modifications, and training staff and caregivers in program implementation.

“The most rewarding part of my career is seeing improvements in the lives of the families we serve.”

BECK DANDE, BCBA

Beck Dande

BCBA

Beck Dande began her career at The Cardinal Center in January of 2017 as a Registered Behavior Technician. After 4 years of working as an RBT, she obtained her master’s degree from Arizona State University in applied behavior analysis and passed her exam to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst in April 2021. In addition to working with clients, she helps mentor new staff and supervises 1:1 sessions by giving feedback, answering questions, modeling interventions, and more.

“I love watching my clients’ faces light up when they do something independently for the first time!”

Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs)

DENNY CLARK, Lead BCBA

Denny Clark

Lead BCBA

Denny Clark earned his B.S. in psychology from Appalachian State University, and graduated from Arizona State University with his Master of Education in Applied Behavior Analysis. He has provided behavior analysis services across a wide variety of settings, and specializes in verbal behavior, staff training, and the development of behavioral interventions for reduction of problem behaviors. Denny started at Cardinal in November of 2020 as our Lead BCBA and BCBA Student Supervisor.

“What I find most rewarding is seeing our clients grow and acquire the skills they need to be successful.”

ASHLEY GATLING, BCBA

Ashley Gatling

BCBA

Ashley Gatling began her career as an elementary school teacher and science coach. While working part time as a Registered Behavior Analyst, she found a love for Applied Behavior Analysis. She earned her master’s degree in special education with a certificate in ABA from Ball State University in 2016, began her time at Cardinal as an RBT in December 2018, and became a Board Certified Behavior Analyst in February 2019. Ashley enjoys learning new skills and ways to practice ABA in a natural environment.

“Teaching socially significant behaviors and seeing overall growth in my clients is the most rewarding part of my job.”

JONATHAN SHAW, BCBA

Jonathan Shaw

BCBA

Jonathan Shaw earned a master’s degree in clinical psychology with a concentration in Applied Behavior Analysis from the University of North Carolina Wilmington. He completed his graduate internship at the Murdoch Developmental Center under the supervision of Dr. Ruth Hurst. After starting at The Cardinal Center for Behavior Analysis in February 2021, Jonathan assists with program development, program modifications, and training staff and caregivers in program implementation.

“The most rewarding part of my career is seeing improvements in the lives of the families we serve.”

BECK DANDE, BCBA

Beck Dande

BCBA

Beck Dande began her career at The Cardinal Center in January of 2017 as a Registered Behavior Technician. After 4 years of working as an RBT, she obtained her master’s degree from Arizona State University in applied behavior analysis and passed her exam to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst in April 2021. In addition to working with clients, she helps mentor new staff and supervises 1:1 sessions by giving feedback, answering questions, modeling interventions, and more.

“I love watching my clients’ faces light up when they do something independently for the first time!”

Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTs)

ALICE OKAMOTO, Lead RBT

Alice Okamoto

Lead RBT

​Alice Okamoto earned her undergraduate degree in psychology at the University of North Carolina Wilmington and her master’s degree in Applied Behavior Analysis at ASU. Alice has worked as a behavior technician for years in schools, homes, and clinics, and giving her clients and their families the best experiences. Alice started at Cardinal in June of 2020, where she works as a Lead Registered Behavior Technician and will sit for her board exam to become a BCBA in early 2021.

“I love getting to watch the kids grow up and getting to know their families, and always seeing them smile!”

HADEEL KHRAIS RBT, Group Lead

Hadeel Khrais

RBT, Group Lead

Hadeel Khrais earned her master’s degree in special education from Wayne State University, and taught in public and charter schools before transitioning to a clinic setting. She has worked with children of all ages and grade levels for over a decade. After starting with The Cardinal Center in July 2019, Hadeel became one of the Registered Behavioral Technician group leads, and is currently working on pursuing her BCBA.

“I love the “aha!” moment with a client after so many hours, days, and weeks working with them to master a specific goal.”

JESSICA SHORT Academic Classroom Teacher, RBT

Jessica Short

Academic Classroom Teacher, RBT

Jessica Short has been working with children with autism and other developmental disabilities for over 10 years. She graduated from Barton College with a Bachelor of Arts in 2008. She has experience with 1:1 instruction, social skills, afterschool programs, and classroom readiness programs. Since June of 2019, Jessica’s goal has been to create an environment at Cardinal that combines fun and learning to aid in students’ development and growth.

“I love being a positive influence and working with our clients! As much as they are learning from me, I am learning from them!”

KATHERINE "KATIE" FLOOD, RBT

Katherine "Katie" Flood

RBT

Katie Flood graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a bachelor’s degree in neuroscience and behavior in 2019. During college, she also worked as a camp counselor for children with special needs and as a research assistant in a project that studied families of children with ASD. Katie started at Cardinal in August of 2020 and is excited to expand her knowledge of ABA as she pursues her master’s degree in special education.

“The opportunity to teach kids the skills they need to gain independence is something that I find truly rewarding.”

DANA WASHINGTON, RBT

Dana Washington

RBT

Dana Washington earned a master’s degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from Ball State University, and has worked with children for over 7 years in several different settings. Dana started at The Cardinal Center for Behavior Analysis in June of 2018 as an RBT, and is currently a supervisee in Cardinal’s BCBA program to pursue a BCBA certification.

“Seeing the progress, a child makes gives me a rush of pride and joy that drives me to do what I do.”

HALEY KLINK, RBT

Haley Klink

RBT

Haley Klink earned her bachelor’s degree in communication science and disorders and has worked with children with autism for over 4 years. Haley is an adventurous person who enjoys rock climbing and who has a blast working with children as a Registered Behavior Technician at The Cardinal Center for Behavior Analysis, where she began in June of 2020.

“It’s so rewarding to see each kid grow independently, and seeing the progress they make each day is the reason I come to work.”

DESTINY CURTIS, RBT

Destiny Curtis

RBT

​Destiny Curtis is currently studying for her Human Services Degree and Psychology Degree, and intention to continue her education in applied behavior analysis. She enjoys working with children with autism, enjoys arts and crafts, and has a long-term goal of traveling the world to help those in need. Destiny joined the Cardinal team as a Registered Behavior Technician in January 2021.

“It’s amazing to see the growth each child makes, and it’s rewarding knowing that I contribute to their success.”

JENNY SHAPLETON, RBT

Jenny Shapleton

RBT

​Jenny Shapleton earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology and neuroscience from Duke University and has worked with children with autism for over 8 years, and has worked as a Registered Behavior Technician for over 4 years. Prior to this, she worked on various research projects at Duke and UNC concerning autism. Jenny started at The Cardinal Center for Behavior Analysis in August 2020.

“I love connecting with my clients on a personal level, discovering their likes and interests, and getting them excited to learn!”

ISABEL SEVERA, RBT

Isabel Severa

RBT

​Isabel Severa is currently pursuing an undergraduate degree in psychology at North Carolina State University, and plans to pursue a master’s degree following graduation. She is passionate about helping people and making an impact in her community, and as a Registered Behavior Technician, Isabel joined the Cardinal team in February 2021 hoping to use her creativity and positivity to help her clients succeed.

“I love every aspect of this job, but seeing clients smile when they make progress is the most rewarding part.”

KENDRA SMALLS, RBT

Kendra Smalls

RBT

Kendra Smalls has a bachelor’s degree in criminology and sociology from Hampton University and behavioral training from Florida Institute of Technology, and she is currently completing her master’s in psychology from Regent University. Kendra joined the Cardinal team in November 2020 and will soon be pursuing her BCBA certification after working as an RBT for over 2 years.

“I love watching children grow and exceed at something I was able to teach them – it’s forever a learning experience.”

ELENA RIVERA, RBT

Elena Rivera

RBT

Elena Rivera attended Urban College of Boston for early childhood education and worked at an inclusive center with neurotypical and neurodivergent children for over ten years. She has worked with children with autism for the past two years and obtained her certificate as a Registered Behavior Technician. She started with The Cardinal Center in August 2020 to pursue her passion in working with children with autism.

“I love that I can make a difference in my clients’ lives, and their families’ lives – watching them thrive is priceless.”

ANDREW CRAIG, RBT

Andrew Craig

RBT

Andrew Craig earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology from UNC-Wilmington and his master’s in professional school counseling from Appalachian State. He earned a certificate in Applied Behavior Analysis from George Mason University and is passionate about working with children with autism and helping them to be successful. Andrew is working toward becoming a BCBA and started with Cardinal in August 2020.

“Seeing the smiles on kid’s faces and working through challenges is the most rewarding experience I can imagine.”

ALLISON BAILEY, RBT

Allison Bailey

RBT

Allison Bailey graduated from East Carolina University in December of 2020, receiving her bachelor’s degree in Behavioral Sciences with a minor in Psychology. She joined The Cardinal Center team as a Registered Behavior Technician in March of 2021 and is pursuing her master’s in Clinical Psychology in effort to become a Licensed Psychological Associate (LPA). Allison loves building deep and meaningful relationships with our clients and is excited to further her career.

“I am so grateful that I get to do what I do every day! And to the parents — thank you for letting me love your child!”

TANIYA SCOTT MCFADDEN, RBT

Taniya Scott McFadden

RBT

Taniya Scott McFadden graduated from North Carolina Wesleyan College in Rocky Mount with a degree in criminal justice and psychology. She has worked with children with autism from ages 3 to 19 years old, and having a younger sister with autism has given her a special and close bond with the work she does as an Registered Behavior Technician. Taniya has been making a difference at Cardinal since February 2021.

“The best part of my job is seeing the child progress to the point where they no longer need me.”

KATEY CARUSO, RBT

Katey Caruso

RBT

Katey Caruso is a New Jersey native who is currently in her junior year at NC State University studying Biology. She loves working with children and hopes to later pursue a career in Pediatric Occupational Therapy. Katie started her career at Cardinal in March of 2021, and one of her favorite parts about working here is that she believes she gets to learn just as much from the children as they do from her.

“Seeing our clients’ smiling faces and helping them reach milestones for success is the greatest reward!”

KAYLA WHITE, RBT

Kayla White

RBT

Kayla White has a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a minor in human development and family studies. Prior to joining the Cardinal team in March of 2021, she worked as a teaching assistant in Costa Rica for six weeks, and has experience in childcare and working with diverse populations. Kayla takes great pride in creating a loving, caring, and comfortable environment for our clients to excel in.

“The most rewarding part of being an RBT is watching kids become more confident and meet their goals.”

Questions?

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