Meet Our Team

Occupational Therapists

Avital Shuster

Clinical Director

Avital is the founder and clinical director of Tumble N’ Dots. Shortly after graduating from the University of Southern California (USC) with a Bachelors and Masters degrees in Occupational Therapy, she began her work as a Pediatric Occupational Therapist at Irvine Unified School District. Avital has received post-professional training in Ayres Sensory Integration® through the Collaboration for Leadership in Ayres Sensory Integration (CLASI) and is qualified to administer the Sensory Integration and Praxis Test (SIPT).   Having completed post-graduate education and training in SOS Feeding Therapy, Avital has been working with children since 2008 and has experience serving children with a variety of diagnosis in the clinic, home, school, telehealth, and community-based settings. Avital believes in helping parents to focus on the strength and abilities of each child while incorporating behavior plans and strategies to foster success. Avital is also the creator of OTPlan – an activity idea search engine for developmental activities. Avital brings her love for children, understanding of parents struggling with a special needs child, and years of therapy experience to every session. In her free time, Avital enjoys spending time with her husband, 3 young children, and her dogs, going to the beach, hiking, and traveling.

Lichelle Fernando

Pediatric Occupational Therapist / Feeding Therapist

Lichelle is a pediatric occupational therapist and feeding and swallowing specialist.  She received her undergraduate degree in Biological Sciences in Canada before moving to Wisconsin where she received a Masters degree in Occupational therapy.  She has over 15 years of extensive experience working with a variety of diagnoses with the pediatric population.

The majority of Lichelle’s career has been at the Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles and Children’s Memorial Hospital in Chicago focusing on the complex medical needs of patients ranging in age from high risk neonates to young adults.  Lichelle’s specializations include developmental therapy, picky/selective eating, bottle feeding, transitioning to solid foods, and sensory and oral motor feeding challenges while looking at the whole child’s sensory, developmental and environmental needs.  Lichelle counsels families in providing strategies to foster positive mealtimes at home.

Lichelle has a passion to work with families closely to help their day run more smoothly.  She takes on a “holistic” approach looking at all areas that may impact a child’s ability to eat and carry on daily skills successfully.

Additionally, Lichelle has experience working in brachial plexus clinic, hand clinic, and specializes in splinting and providing hand therapy for a variety of upper extremity diagnoses in the pediatric population.

Lichelle has presented at OTAC, AOTA, and APTA national and regional conferences providing evaluation and treatment strategies for the pediatric population with feeding/dysphagia issues.

Lichelle is a native Canadian who successfully worked her way down to warm, sunny California where she loves to try new restaurants, attempt new recipes, entertain friends and family, and do anything fun that is active or inactive with her husband, two kids, and dog Bailey. 

Dr. Angeline Yee

Pediatric Occupational TherapisT / FEEDING THERAPIST

Angeline is a pediatric occupational therapist who received her Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctorate in Occupational Therapy from the University of Southern California (USC). She completed her doctoral residency specializing in group programs for young children targeting self-regulation, mindfulness, and social-emotional skills at a private pediatric OT practice. 

Angeline has extensive experience providing therapy in both individual and group formats, targeting the areas of fine and gross motor development, sensory processing, self-regulation, and executive functioning. She has completed advanced training in Handwriting without Tears, the USC Chan Sensory Integration Continuing Education Certification program, and Social Thinking. Angeline values collaboration with all individuals who are a part of a child’s life, including caregivers, teachers, and other therapy professionals. She is passionate about providing family-centered care to promote a child’s participation in any of their occupations – including play, learning, and social interactions. 

In her free time, Angeline enjoys quality time with family, friends, and her pups, going to Disneyland, and yoga!  

Dr. Phoebe Yam

Pediatric Occupational Therapist / Human-Animal Interaction Specialist

Phoebe has been working with the pediatric population since 2012. She began volunteering to teach karate to children with special needs and then worked as a Developmental Specialist using DIR/Floortime. Phoebe graduated from the University of Southern California (USC) with her Masters in Occupational Therapy in 2018 and her Doctorate in Occupational Therapy in 2019. She completed her doctoral residency to pursue competency in animal-assisted occupational therapy and training dogs for animal assisted interventions. In 2023, Phoebe earned her Certificate as a Human-Animal Interaction Specialist from the University of North Florida’s Animal-Assisted Interventions and Interactions Certificate Program. She follows the Animal Assisted Intervention International Standards & Competencies to practice animal assisted therapy.

Phoebe enjoys learning about each child’s motivations and uses a strengths-based approach to highlight each individual’s inherent abilities and interests to improve areas of need.

Phoebe is a proponent of lifelong learning and presents at local, state, and national conferences. Topics are related to standards of practice and competencies to strengthen the skills of healthcare and human service providers when participating in occupational therapy and animal assisted interventions.

In her free time, Phoebe enjoys eating, reading, baking, rock climbing, taking dog training classes, and going to the dog beach with her dog, Summer.

Bess Sorensen

Pediatric Occupational Therapist / Feeding Therapist

Bess grew up in Northern CA but moved to Southern CA in 2018. She earned her Bachelors of Science in Human Development and Family Studies from Colorado State University, then earned her Master of Occupational Therapy degree at Samuel Merritt University in Oakland, CA in 2014. 

She has been working in pediatrics since graduation, specializing in early childhood development, sensory integration, oral motor skills/self-feeding, tethered oral tissues, and picky eaters. 

Bess always looks to engage, not only the child, but parents, teachers, and other team members to create the most positive environment possible for each and every client. 

Her family-centered approach to therapy stems from seeing her brother in OT, ST, and feeding therapy throughout his childhood and seeing the effect it had on her family growing up. 

Her approach encourages parents to be an integral part of the therapeutic process and engage with their child and their therapist to create a strong bond and a trusting therapeutic relationship. 

Bess is a loving wife and mother of a 5 year old boy, who has more personality than she knows what to do with!  She loves doing puzzles, country music concerts, anything Disney or Disneyland related, and Harry Potter. 

Katherine Chen

Pediatric Occupational Therapist / Feeding Therapist

Katherine graduated from California State University, Fullerton with a Bachelor’s of Science in Early Childhood Education, focused in Family and Community Settings. She received her Master’s of Science in Occupational Therapy from Stanbridge University in 2019. She is a pediatric occupational therapist who specializes in sensory integration, self-regulation, feeding, dressing, oral motor skills, fine motor skills, and early intervention in the home. Katherine has extensive experience analyzing the movements and behaviors of children from the ages of 0-3 in the family home context and adapting and providing home program recommendations that suit family routines and cultures. She strongly believes in the collaboration of the community in the development of children and especially in supporting parental needs. Katherine believes that when the parent feels supported and prioritized, the child’s participation are positively impacted. In her free time, Katherine enjoys long talks with friends and family, baking, going on hikes and walks with her dogs, and reading.

Adrienne Huff

Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant

Adrienne is a certified occupational therapy assistant. She graduated with her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Grand Canyon University in 2021. She also completed an OTA program from Santa Ana College in 2022. She has always had a passion for working with kids. She became a nanny for different families at the age of 15. While she completed her clinical hours, she spent her time providing support for the OTs, and developing and implementing intervention plans for pediatric clients. Adrienne was born and raised in Orange County. She enjoys spending time with her friends, traveling, watching sunsets, playing board games, vacationing in Michigan, and taking care of her dog, Lila.

Christina Restrepo

Pediatric Occupational Therapist / Feeding Therapist

Christina is an energetic and driven occupational therapist dedicated to bringing the best care for her clients and family. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Health Science from Cal State Fullerton while simultaneously playing Division 1 soccer for the Titans. Her passion for child development started from coaching youth soccer and being a teacher’s assistant at an early childhood development center after undergrad. She earned her Master of Science in Occupational Therapy degree from A.T. Still University of Health Sciences in 2016.

She has been working in pediatric private practice clinics ever since graduation with children with a variety of diagnoses. Christina particularly enjoys meeting children and their families where they are at and providing them with the skills and tools necessary to meet their full potential. Christina also has experience with developing and implementing a soccer-based program for youth with varying abilities.

She has completed post-graduate training and certification with sensory integration, Interactive Metronome, Therapeutic Listening, Sequential Oral Sensory Approach to Feeding, picky feeders, and primitive reflexes.

Christina is a Southern California native who enjoys being outdoors walking her two dogs Bane and Jafar, hiking, playing soccer, or traveling with her husband.

Sharon Sin

Pediatric Occupational Therapist

Sharon is a pediatric occupational therapist who received her Bachelor’s in Social Sciences with an emphasis in Psychology in 2016, and Master’s in Occupational Therapy in 2019, both at the University of Southern California (USC).

Sharon has been working in pediatrics since completing school, specializing in the areas of fine motor, feeding, oral motor, and sensory processing skills. She has experience working in early intervention, providing services to children ages 0-3 years within the home setting and at outpatient clinics, working with children under 13 years. She previously ran a life skills group for teenagers and young adults with special needs to address areas including executive functioning, social skills, and fine motor skills necessary for greater independence in their home lives.

Sharon was motivated to pursue occupational therapy by her desire to help children and families in a meaningful, holistic way. She values understanding children through the lens of their strengths, interests, family context, and history to inform treatment that involves the entire family. Knowing that therapy occupies a small portion of a child’s time, she believes that collaboration and education are an essential element of providing effective care.

Sharon is a southern California native and in her free time, she enjoys taking walks outside, eating, traveling, reading, and spending quality time with her friends, family, husband and their tortoiseshell cat, Hazel.

Speech Language Pathologists

Christina Johnson

Director of Speech Pathology, CCC-SLP

Christina Johnson has been a licensed and ASHA certified speech-language pathologist for over 24 years. She has been serving a largely pediatric clientele in her own private practice for the last 2 decades. Christina is a mother of 3 kids and is an avid runner and cyclist. Christina earned her Master’s Degree in Communicative Disorders from California State University, Fullerton in l997. She also holds a BA in Communicative Disorders from CSUF and BA in Social Ecology from UCI. She is credentialed with a Clinical Rehabilitative teaching certificate in the state of California. Christina has worked in a multitude of settings, such as acute hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, public schools, early intervention agencies and private practice. Her professional experience includes the assessment and treatment of children and young adults presenting with a variety of communicative disorders, including autism spectrum disorder, language processing disorder, phonological/articulation disorders, fluency disorder, childhood apraxia of speech, myofunctional/tongue thrust. Christina’s clinical vision is to provide a family centered approach to therapy through evidenced based intervention for her clients, and education for caregivers to ensure the successful achievement of goals. In her free time she also enjoys water sports and traveling with her family. ASHA Certified Speech-Language Pathologist

Stephanie Mu-Simpelo

Speech Language Pathologist, CCC-SLP

Stephanie is a licensed and ASHA certified Speech-Language Pathologist who has been serving the pediatric population since March 2020.

Stephanie earned her Master’s degree in Communicative Disorders from California State University, Northridge in 2019 and Bachelor’s degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders from California State University, Fullerton in 2017. 

Stephanie has worked primarily with the pediatric population in private practices, early intervention facilities, and outpatient clinics. Her professional experience includes assessment and treatment of children and young adults with variety of communicative disorders, including autism spectrum disorder, receptive/expressive language disorder, phonological/articulation disorder, fluency/stuttering, social communication/pragmatics deficits, and other  speech/language related disorders (e.g., Down syndrome, PANDAS, genetic disorders). She also has experience working with individuals who have communication difficulties and use augmentative alternative communication devices (e.g., iPads, communication boards/PECS).

Stephanie believes in employing a family-centered approach and collaborating with caregivers to identify family’s needs and priorities. Stephanie also strongly believes in treating the child as a whole to identify their strengths and interests while integrating evidence-based intervention.

In her free time, Stephanie enjoys spending time with her family and friends on the weekends, cooking her favorite foods, cuddling with her 2 cats, and playing pickleball.

ASHA Certified Speech-Language Pathologist

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Stacie Bateman

Speech Language Pathologist, CCC-SLP

ASHA Certified Speech-Language Pathologist


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Igal S.

Chief Operating Officer

Igal is the co-founder and COO of Tumble N’ Dots. 

Igal graduated with a Master’s degree in Computer Science from the University of Southern California (USC) and has been involved in overseeing the operations of pediatric clinics since 2001, having worked in various clinics.

In his free time, Igal enjoys running, mountain, biking, and spending quality time with his family.

Natalie G.

Care Coordinator

Natalie was born and raised in Whittier, CA but spent a lot of time growing up in her parent’s home country of El Salvador where she found many interests and skills, including her love and enthusiasm for helping others.

She graduated from California State University, Fullerton in 2021 with a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and has been working in the education field for the last five years ranging from Summer Camp Counselor, Preschool Teacher Assistant, and even an Elementary school P.E. teacher.

She has a passion for working with children and hopes to one day go back to school and earn her single-subject credential in English for secondary education.  

Natalie believes that showing up every day with compassion and respect goes a long way to creating strong relations with the people she crosses paths with throughout her life. She strives to be as helpful and understanding as she can be wherever she is needed. She has donated a lot of her free time to helping animal shelters, organizing nature clean-ups with close friends/peers, and even volunteering in fundraisers to help support families back in El Salvador.  

Natalie enjoys spending time with her two pups, Charlie and Chip, who keep her occupied with fun park days and scenic hikes. She also loves spending time with her partner, friends, and/or family eating good food and sharing warm laughs. 


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Ella S.

Office Assistant

Ella has been assisting at our office since 2020 during her free time, while attending school. She plans to become an Occupational Therapist and is gaining a lot of experience at Tumble N’ Dots in preparation for OT school. 

Ella enjoys going to the beach and spending time with her friends and pets.

Canine Co-Therapists


Canine Co-therapist

Summer is an Australian Cattle Dog mix who has been in training with Phoebe since 2019 to work in animal assisted therapy sessions. She began her career in an outpatient occupational therapy clinic and dog training facility. She was trained and handled using positive reinforcement, reward-based, and relationship-based methods. She has participated in two in-person practicums and served as a demonstration dog for animal assisted therapy. Summer has experience working with several populations including children, adolescents, and adults with varying abilities.

Summer has her Canine Good Citizen, Community Canine, and Urban Canine titles from the American Kennel Club. They enjoy taking agility, musical freestyle, and rally competition classes.

Phoebe and Summer are evaluated as an AAI human-animal team yearly for animal assisted occupational therapy and have been deemed a good fit by objective evaluators skilled in occupational therapy, animal assisted therapy, and dog training.

In her free time, Summer enjoys cuddling, sunbathing, playing with her best friend, Toast the pug, and going the dog beach.