About the People in The Out-of-Sync Child Grows Up


These are their names, what they are doing now, and the ages they were when they (or their parents) wrote for The Out-of-Sync Child Grows Up .

Lecia Baker lives in Georgia, where she copes with her SPD and pursues a degree in interpreting American Sign Language. She wrote her poem at 18.

Kylie Boazman graduated from Smith College in 2014 where she studied anthropology in an effort to better understand people and the world around her. She has received a master’s in sociology and anthropology and is working on a second master’s in disability studies. She hopes to become an anthropology professor and disability activist. Originally from Boise, Idaho, Kylie has lived in several parts of the country and the world. She looks forward to attending graduate school and traveling whenever possible. Kylie wrote for The Out-of-Sync Child Grows Up when she was 20.

Kori Cotteleer graduated from Iowa State University, with a degree in animal ecology/pre-vet and a minor in biology. She is currently working at a nature center doing outreach education as well as working at a wildlife rehabilitation center. Kori’s home is in Illinois works on Sanibel Island, Florida, alongside her sister practicing wildlife rehabilitation. She wrote her story at 20.

Hayley Fannin is a technical college graduate living in Washington State. She loves Disney movies and is on the path to find a permanent career, currently working and enjoying life with family and friends by her side. She wrote her poem, which opens the book, at 19.

Jason Fisch is a high school student, a champion on the basketball court and in the classroom, and involved in volunteering in his community and especially for the STAR Institute for Sensory Processing Disorder in Greenwood Village. He lives with his family and dog Bronco in Colorado. He was 14 when he wrote.

Andrew Herbert has undergraduate and graduate degrees from a world renowned school of music. His undergraduate degree is in classical guitar, and his master’s is in music composition. His music professor said he “was the best student he had in 30 years of teaching and would set the bar so high for the other students.” Living in Texas, he is a music professor and loves to teach. His mother wrote about him as a 12-year-old.

Ian Hoyman lives in Colorado. He is a writer and loves reading, his dog Ripley, and playing the bass violin by himself and with his father, a bassoonist. He was 14 when he wrote his pieces.

Michael Jacobs, as a little boy, had severe auditory overresponsivity, was afraid of stairs, and didn’t ride a bike until age nine, after four years of OT. Today, he is a U.S. Marine, Assault Climber/Infantry Unit, and is studying criminal justice. He was raised in New Hampshire. He wrote is story at 18.

Karly Koop teaches kindergarten and first grade in a homeschool co-op and runs the Wiggle Room (a sensorimotor lab) at an elementary school near her Texas home. She is learning American Sign Language and to play the piano. She has earned a brown belt in karate, her passion.

Kevin Larson has SPD and autism (and calls himself an “autist”). He lives in South Carolina with his parents and younger brother and currently is a student at Texas A&M University, where he is majoring in meteorology and minoring in physics and mathematics. He is a National Merit Scholar, a member of the Phi Eta National Honor Society, a student mentor, a member of TAMSCAMS (the university’s chapter of the American Meteorological Society), and on the Honors Student Council. His interests include math, science, meteorology, cartography, numismatics, languages, and Mario Kart speedrunning. He wrote his pieces at 15.

Kerry Magro is a motivational speaker, talk show host, film consultant, and advocate for people with autism, SPD, and other disabilities. He wrote Defining Autism from the Heart and Autism and Falling in Love and contributed to College for Students with Disabilities: We Do Belong. He has a master’s in strategic communication from Seton Hall University and lives in New Jersey. He was 25 when he wrote for The Out-of-Sync Child Grows Up. www.kerrymagro.com

Bob Palmer is the subject of his wife Melissa’s story about dating him when he was 21. Now he is a loving husband and wonderful father to two girls with sensory issues of their own.

Daisy Roberg is the subject of her mother’s story about Daisy when she was 18. The family lives in New Jersey.

Chloe Rothschild is an autism advocate living in Ohio. She wrote at 18.

Leanna Taylor is majoring in forensic science at Loyola University Chicago. Her home is in Maryland. She wrote her piece at 16.

Daniel Travis lives in Michigan and is a Web developer. He also runs websites offering support to those struggling with SPD. He loves music, writes comedic fiction, and tries to make a positive impact in every life he touches. He wrote at 24. www.spdlife.org

Justin Wayland is enrolled in a science and technology magnet program at a Maryland high school. He enjoys petting his cats and programming and wants to be a computer scientist. He was 16 when he wrote.

Lydia Wayman lives in Pennsylvania and holds an M.A. in English and nonfiction writing. Lydia advocates for the autism community through speaking, writing, and visual arts. She loves cats and being creative; she is co-writing a middle-grade novel with an autistic main character. She was 24 when she wrote her piece for the book.

Tyler Ann Whitney lives in Oklahoma and loves school, softball, theater, judo, karate, and witty TV sitcoms. Her dream job when she grows up is to work at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, as a forensic anthropologist. She was 14 when she wrote.

Shalea Wilson is the subject of her mother Deb’s story. Shalea enjoys laughing, making her own earrings, and getting her nails done. She loves to swim and play Wii bowling. She attends a transition academic program in Washington State and works for S’cool Moves, assembling educational kits. She helps to educate others about SPD by participating in demonstration videos shared with educators and therapists. Her mother wrote about her when she was 12.


Laurie Appel, OTR/L, has been practicing Occupational Therapy since 1995 and currently resides in Boise, Idaho. After spending 12 years doing individual, home-based, birth-to-3 interventions, Laurie expanded her vision and created an integrative, whole family, multi-disciplinary private practice called The Lotus Tree Sensory Integration Center. Laurie is an advanced cranial-sacral therapist who believes whole-heartedly in the power of love and intention to create a harmonious life for ourselves and our communities. She considers herself a “sensory kid, all grown-up.” www.lotustreeboise.com

Bob Argue is very active in the SW Michigan Human Services community. He is involved with several organizations that help the homeless and help low income people pay their bills. He is an advocate for Veterans’ benefits and serves on the Board of Directors of Disability Network Southwest Michigan. He still isn’t having much luck with traditional dating but is having some success with making new friends and being social.

Paul Balius grew up in Orange County, California, and lives there still with his wife, a lovely and gentle woman. They have three wonderful children. Paul travels widely and has many interests, including scuba diving, playing the piano, riding motorcycles, writing stories, rebuilding cars, admiring art and learning martial arts. He has been a machinist, engineer, and building architect, and presently works as the Director of Information Technology for a large manufacturing firm. For 14 years he volunteered in the Prison Ministry in multiple California prisons and continues counseling and preaching in a home church. He also mentors young men, helping them to reach their potential in life. He is writing his first book.

Gina Betech lives in Mexico where she cares for her family. Her interests include caring for her family; learning about the mind/body/psyche connection; practicing somatic movement, Pilates, and yoga; and studying logoeducation (about Victor Frankl’s psychotherapeutic theories). Through intensive therapy she has experienced amazing improvement in the way she inhabits her own being and relates to the world.

Meredith Joseph Blaine, living in Kentucky, has an M.S. in library and information science. He is a speaker, advocate, and future writer with special interests in Sensory Processing Disorder, autism spectrum disorders, and neuroscience. Found to have an SPD just before age 27, he also has Asperger’s and Tourette’s Disorders. He wants to receive more fun and playful sensory therapies one day, both in an OT gym and in an indoor trampoline park.

Mary Ann Conway was diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder in her 50s. She is a multitalented artist, crafter, crocheter and photographer and considers herself a giver, not a taker. She lives with her husband in New Jersey. She wrote about her experiences with SPD when she was 55.

Debbie Feely focusing now on grandkids and church activities, lives in California. She is a homemaker, gardener, wife, sister, mom, “Meema” to 19 grandchildren, and also a homeschool advisor, consultant, speaker and writer. She has an Etsy shop on the Internet where she sells her soft, handmade baby clothes, called ComfyFeely. Although she did not receive treatment for SPD as a child, she learned later about how effective it can be and practiced for 10 years as a Perceptual Motor Therapist. She was 60 when she wrote her piece.

Marlene Gomez, OTR and psychologist, treats children and adults in Mexico City. She is a professor of Psychosocial OT and Human Development in the Instituto de Terapia Ocupacional. A specialty is understanding how teenagers with eating issues may resort to unusual behaviors, and what to help them do so they can live and socialize with more satisfaction.

Temple Grandin, PhD, writes and speaks about her struggles and successes as a person with autism and as a designer of livestock-handling equipment. Half the cattle in the United States are handled in facilities of her design. Living in Colorado, she is a professor of animal science at Colorado State University. She was recently inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Her many books include Temple Talks … about Autism and Sensory Issues (2015) and The Autistic Brain (2013). She wrote for The Out-of-Sync Child Grows Up at 66. www.templegrandin.com

Annette Himmelreich, LMSW, a teacher and social worker, lives in Texas. She has worked with traumatized children, adolescents, and adults in a variety of care facilities in the U.S. and Russia. She teaches English as a Second Language and works with those who have gone through grief and loss.

Joanna Lees lives in Indiana with her godmother and a pack of dogs, one cat, and too many wild birds and critters to count. She currently works in property and casualty insurance. Participating in The Out-of-Sync Child Grows Up project and reading about others’ experiences with SPD was a blessing. She now views her past through a different, more kindly lens, and looks forward to her future with renewed anticipation. She took lessons and is now an avid swimmer.

Shonda Lucas lives in Kentucky with her adopted son. She is active on inclusion and disabilities boards, speaks about special education at the University of Kentucky and in the special needs community, and advocates for adoptive parents of children with SPD and other developmental issues.

Judy McCarter, OTR/L, speaks about SPD and other issues and practices SI in her clinic, Functional Therapy, Inc., in Oklahoma. She is still evolving and understanding her gifts with the help of Benny, her service dog.

Jennifer McIlwee Myers was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome at the age of 36. She refers to herself as the “Aspie at Large.” She lives in California with her husband and is the author of Growing Up with Sensory Issues: Insider Tips from a Woman with Autism. www.aane.org

Zachary Prossick-Brown was diagnosed with SPD at the age of five and received physical therapy as a boy. Today, he copes effectively by quiet time alone, watching movies, reading, and meditating, and by physical action such as cycling, running, and weight lifting. He also enjoys drawing and producing other kinds of art and socializing with friends. He lives in Texas and works as a crew leader for a custodial team.

Christopher Sabine, LICSW, has Optic Nerve Hypoplasia [ONH] and is significantly visually impaired. Living in Ohio, he is President of ONH Consulting, LLC, which provides support, consultation and advocacy services to families of children with ONH and related conditions. wwwONHConsulting.com

Rachel S. Schneider, M.A., MHC, an SPD community advocate with a background in mental health counseling, is the author of Making Sense: A Guide to Sensory Issues (2016). Diagnosed with SPD at age 27, she chronicles her journey at www.comingtosenses.blogspot.org She lives in New York with her husband. She thanks her loving family for sticking with her all along — even before the diagnosis. Their love and kindness has helped her make the transition into a well-functioning, SPD adult. www.themighty.com

Charles Shidlofsky, OD, was born and raised in Lawrence, New York. His family moved to the Dallas area when he was 16 years old. In 1980, he graduated from J.J. Pearce High School in Richardson, Texas. Dr. Shidlofsky completed his Pre-Optometry studies at the University of Texas at Austin in 1984. He then attended Southern College of Optometry in Memphis, Tenn. where he received his BS in 1986 and OD in 1988. Upon graduation, he moved back to to the Dallas area to begin his practice.

Dr. S, as he is known around the office, has been very active in Neuro-developmental Optometry for most of his years in practice. He has developed and integrated many unique therapies that have helped thousands of children who have struggled in school due to vision problems often seen in ADD/ADHD, Autism Spectrum Disorder, and Sensory Processing Disorders, as well as some of the classic vision problems related to focusing, eye teaming, eye movement skills, visual spatial skills, and vision perception issues. He has expanded his work to include those with traumatic and acquired brain injury, stroke, and other neurological processing problems. In addition, he works in the Dallas area with several professional sports teams, as well as weekend athletes, on developing vision skills. Dr. Shidlofsky is a Clinical Director for the Special Olympics Opening Eyes Program.

Dr. Shidlofsky completed his Fellowship for the College of Optometrists in Vision Development in 2011. In addition, he is an Adjunct Professor of Optometry at Southern College of Optometry, University of Houston College of Optometry, University of Incarnate Word-Rosenberg College of Optometry and Western University College of Optometry. He is also director of a private practice residency program in pediatrics/vision therapy/sports vision and neuro-vision rehabilitation through Southern College of Optometry.

Dr. Shidlofsky lives in Plano with his wife of 30 years, Sherri. He has three grown children, Alyssa, Kara, and Ian, who are spread out throughout the country. He stays active by playing ice hockey, traveling, and enjoying family activities. www.neurovisionassociates.com

Andrew Short lives in Canberra, Australia. He has cerebral palsy and is always looking for ways to improve his sensory functioning. He shares many creative ideas on his website www.blindsensoryexploration.com

Ember Walker lives in Nebraska with her husband, her teenage stepson (who recently won the custody battle with his mom to come live with them), and her two boys. She volunteers her time on the Autism Society of Nebraska State Puzzle Walk Committee, as well as the Autism Society of Nebraska First Responders, and Advocacy committee. She also volunteers locally on the Autism Society of Nebraska – Omaha Support Network’s Elementary, Teen, Independence Day, New Year’s, Halloween Hoopla (PreK & Elementary aged children), Sensory Santa, Sensory Friendly Movie, Recreation club, and their Pump It Up committees. Aside from her volunteer work, she is employed by the Autism Society of Nebraska – Omaha Support Network as the Administrative Assistant.

Debra Em Wilson, MA, DPST, who writes about herself and her daughter Shalea, is a neurodevelopmental learning specialist and founder of S’cool Moves, Inc., a company whose mission is to educate about learning differences and create job opportunities for adolescents and adults with disabilities. The family lives in Washington State. Deb is the mother of two teenagers and enjoys her flower gardens, walking the river trails, and spending time with her family and friends. www.schoolmoves.com

Nicole Anson Wolske lives in Massachusetts and is studying to be a pediatric occupational therapist.


Aaron Fisch & Marla Roth-Fisch, Jason’s parents, live in Colorado. Aaron is in the hospitality industry; Marla is a digital marketing consultant. Both do advocacy work for SPD. Marla is VP of the Board of Directors for the STAR Institute for Sensory Processing Disorder and is an award-winning author/illustrator of the children’s books, Sensitive Sam and Sensitive Sam Visits the Dentist.

Abigayle Fisch wrote at 15 about growing up as Jason’s sister. She is a high school honor student, active in leadership, dance and fitness, and volunteering in her community and for the STAR Institute for Sensory Processing Disorder in Colorado.

Andrew Herbert’s mother is a speech-and-language pathologist and owner of a clinic in Texas that specializes in children with auditory processing disorders and children on the autism spectrum. She is writing a book about Andrew entitled, I’ve Never Known Silence.

Melissa Palmer, Bob’s wife, teaches college and writes books when she’s not wrangling pets or Momming. She is the author of A Life Less Normal and the upcoming Baking for Dave. The family lives in New Jersey, close enough to the beach to enjoy it, and far enough away to avoid the noise and crowds.

Avigail Roberg and her family, including daughter Daisy, live in New Jersey.

Bobbi Sheahan is co-author of three books, including, What I Wish I’d Known About Raising a Child with Autism. Bobbi, who has many sensory issues in common with her husband and one of her kids, was a columnist for Sensory Focus magazine and is a member of the advisory board of Autism Aspergers Digest magazine. She was also honored to be a contributor to Wayne Gilpin’s final book, A Lifetime of Laughing and Living With Autism. Bobbi lives with her family in Texas.

and her daughters have sensory issues. Bobbi is the co- author of three books, including, What I Wish I’d Known About Raising a Child with Autism. The family lives in Texas.

Peter Sullivan is an environmental health researcher focusing on toxins and wireless safety, as well as the father of two sons who used to have serious sensory issues. The family lives in California.

Lisa Wunderlich Taylor, M.Ed., is a learning specialist and parent of four teenagers with SPD, living in Maryland. She works with students of all ages to realize their potential. She provides academic therapy at Imagine Possibility, www.iptutoring.com

Debra Em Wilson, who writes about herself and her daughter Shalea, is a neurodevelopmental learning specialist and founder of S’cool Moves, Inc., a company whose mission is to educate about learning differences and create job opportunities for adolescents and adults with disabilities. The family lives in Washington State.

Stephanie J. Whitney, OTR/L, who writes about her daughter, Tyler Ann, works in schools and pediatric outpatient settings with an emphasis in sensory integration. The family lives in Oklahoma.


Lindsey Biel, MA, OTR/L, is an occupational therapist with a private practice in New York City where she evaluates and treats children and adolescents with ASD and other developmental challenges. She is coauthor of Raising a Sensory Smart Child: The Definitive Handbook for Helping Your Child with Sensory Processing Issues and author of Sensory Processing Challenges: Effective Clinical Work with Kids& Teens. www.sensorysmarts.com

Kelly Dorfman, MS, LND, a clinical nutritionist, lives in Maryland. She uses nutrition therapeutically to improve brain function, energy, and mood. She has helped many children and adolescents with a cornucopia of eating issues. Her recent book is, Cure Your Child with Food. www.kellydorfman.com

Minna Loketch Fischer, Psy.D.,, lives in New York with her husband and two children. She is a psychologist who specializes in child and adolescent integrated medical care and health psychology with an interest in neuropsychology.

Lucy Jane Miller, PhD, OTR, lives in Colorado. She is Clinical Director, of STAR Center, and Research Director of SPD Foundation. She is the author of Sensational Kids: Hope and Help for Children with Sensory Processing Disorder and co-author of No Longer A Secret: Unique Common Sense Strategies for Children with Sensory or Motor Challenges. www.spdstar.org