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RBI OFFICE


Stephen Hernandez, M.A., BCBA, Director

I have been working with children on the autism spectrum for the past 18 years. It has been such an amazing privilege to have been given the opportunity to work with these children and their families. I first got into the field of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) when I was an undergrad psychology major. I found a flyer that was seeking new behavior therapists. I answered that ad and soon after trained under some of the best consultants in the Dallas/Ft. Worth metroplex.

I knew this was my life calling from the moment I started working with my first child. From there, I worked solely on in-home programs while finishing my undergraduate degree. Since then I have obtained a Master Degree in Special Education and have become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA).

Stephen Hernandez

I have worked with children on all levels of the spectrum. I have experience dealing with children with mal-behavior issues and have also had the opportunity to oversee social groups for middle school and high school aged students. Most importantly, I am a big proponent of natural environment training.

For the past 17 years, I have worked in Frisco, Plano, Dallas and as far as Crandall, TX. However, as my family started growing I decided to move them back to the Red Oak area where I was raised. After moving home, I quickly noticed a lack of services being offered to children on the spectrum in our area. Therefore, I decided to move my practice south to serve Ellis county and its surrounding areas.

Finally, I find working with children and having an impact on their lives and the lives of their famiy extremely rewarding. It is amazing to see each child grow and achieve goals and milestones that may have seemed out of reach if it wasn't for ABA. I am looking forward to helping children and their families in Ellis county.

 

Christopher Jones, Senior Therapist/Supervisor

Chris comes to RBI with 16 years of experience specializing in ABA therapy and special education. He worked as a special education teacher in the Dallas ISD where he provided inclusion support, administered ARDs and taught life skills to his students. He is currently working on his Master Degree in Psychology and hopes to obtain his LPC in his pursuit to further his education in child development.

 

Samantha Gonzales, M.A., Lead Therapist

Samantha is joining RBI as a Registered Behavior Technician. In 2018 she was awarded a Master of Clinical Psychology from Southwestern Assemblies of God University. Samantha has many years of experience working with children, most recently being a Preschool teacher aiding in their educational, behavioral, and social development. She is extremely excited to work with new children and families and make an impact in their lives. Currently she is working towards obtaining her BCBA.

 

Leigha Weatherford, Registered Behavior Technician

Leigha Weatherford received a minor in Biblical Studies from Abilene Christian University. She received her undergraduate degree from UT Dallas in Child Development & Psychology. She has 16 years experience working with children, 9 of those years specializing in providing ABA therapy to children on the autism spectrum. She has held a Registered Behavior Technician certification for the last four years. She enjoys and sees the value of behavioral intervention and data collection. She loves being a part of helping children reach their full potential with ABA, while maintaining a philosophy that kids should be kids and have fun in their work. In her spare time she enjoys going to concerts, musicals, sporting events and spending time with her cat Gizmo and salt water fish.

 

Samuel Campbell, Registered Behavior Technician

Samuel is currently a senior at Southwestern Assemblies of God (SAGU), pursuing his Bachelor Degree in Counseling with a focus on addiction. He was born and raised in Austin, Texas where he previously worked for a crisis center and, several years at his local Boys and Girls Club of America. Samuel enjoys sports and working with people of all ages. He played basketball for SAGU for two years and plans to pursue his master's degree so he can continue his career in ABA Therapy. RBI is excited to have him join their team as a Behavior Technician.

 

Jorie Martinez, Registered Behavior Technician

Jorie received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology with a Minor in Children and Family in spring 2020.  She is now working on her master's in applied behavior analysis.  Jorie is from Colorado Springs, Colorado.  Before coming to RBI she was a music teacher for string instruments. She loves working with kids and is happy to be a part of the RBI team!

 

 

Terri Slick, Behavior Technician

Terri Slick has been working with children for the past 8 years. She is a licensed cosmetologist and has plans to finish her EMT certificate. Terri spends most of her free time attending church and going on mission trips to help the community. She also enjoys volunteering at the YMCA as a coach for youth volleyball and basketball. Terri loves working with children and enjoys watching them improve and grow as individuals. She is very excited to learn more about ABA therapy and is joining the RBI team with a baby on the way.

 

Maddie Kizewski, Behavior Technician

Maddie Kizewski graduated in 2018 with a Degree in Psychology and a Minor in Nutrition from Texas Tech University. She previously worked at a neuro optometry office in Plano that specializes in children with Autism, Down syndrome and other learning disabilities. While there she had the opportunity to work with children of all ages to help promote their growth and acquire new skills. She loves playing golf, reading, spending time with her family and her two dogs; Riker and Haze. Maddie enjoys being able to work with children daily and to watch them grow and reach their full potential. She plans to continue her education in ABA therapy and pursue her master's degree.

 

Elise Hernandez, Office Manager

Our office manager, Elise Hernandez comes to us with several years of experience in the medical and insurance fields, working as a senior claims examiner for companies such as The Hartford and Zurich. She is passionate about helping others and spending time with her family and friends. She has been married to Stephen for 12 years and together they have 5 children. She is a licensed clinical reflexologist and a natural health & wellness enthusiast.

 

 

Testimonials

Stephen Hernandez has been a godsend to our family for the past 17 years.

  • Tammy M.

He began his career with our son learning with the rest of us. ABA and various other approaches such as RDI and floortime were just emerging in the behavioral field to help children with autism. Our son has been able to reach his full potential through the guidance of Stephen who has never given up on teaching him a concept or skill no matter how many times it had to be repeated. I have also had the pleasure of working with Stephen under different consultants and with other children. From the highest functioning to the lowest, Stephen knows how to bring out the best in that child. All families including ours, want to keep Stephen involved in their children's lives (even if they just need a little tutoring) because he is that invested in their progress and the families overall success. To say anyone would be blessed to have Stephen become the leader of their child's path to reach their full potential would be an understatement!

He helped me regain my confidence as a mom!

  • Nikki H.

Stephen entered our lives when autism was still new to our family and we were struggling in several areas. He helped me to regain my confidence as a mom and taught my son challenging skills, all while maintaining a friendly rapport with both of us! His genuine dedication and understanding of our families was apparent in his flexibility and willingness to work through issues until a reasonable plan was developed. When other parents ask me for recommendations, Stephen is always the first person that comes to mind. Even though we worked through difficult moments, my son's prominent memory of Stephen is that he was "fun".

He has been transformational in our son's life and his journey living with autism.

  • Libby C.

Our family cannot say enough great things about Stephen Hernandez and his amazing work. He has been transformational in our son's life and his journey living with autism. Stephen worked as both a teacher and behavioral therapist for two and a half years and then continued with our son in social groups and one-on-one sessions. The difference he made and the progress our son has had due to his time with Stephen are nothing short of miraculous. Stephen even helped him get his Driver's License! Our son's social skills, focus and independence skills were all greatly improved. Stephen's patience, dedication and commitment to his students is unbelievable and such a comfort to parents who are faced with what appear to be insurmountable problems. We cannot recommend him enough!

These experiences could not be taught in a regular classroom setting.

  • Beth S.

Our family was fortunate to find Mr. Stephen when our son was in middle school.  We had heard wonderful things about him from other families and luckily we were able to schedule one-on-one therapy and social group sessions with him. Mr. Stephen was part of our extended family for 8 years.
One of the Mr. Stephen's strengths is that he is able to take clinical work and apply it in a way that our population finds interesting, non threatening and fun.  It was a different setting and feel than a typical therapy office visit.  All of his students/clients were treated with the utmost respect despite their disabilities.  His consistency in communicating information and his approach to teaching social skills were creative, different and an alternative way to learn.  "Field trips" were part of the social group sessions with life experiences such as cooking, shopping for food, budgeting, buying presents for holidays, talking to strangers, understanding relationships, game playing, bathroom etiquette, birthday parties, turn taking and even a baby shower!  These experiences could not be taught in a regular classroom setting.
On the educational side, we incorporated behavior strategies used in therapy with Mr. Stephen, to our son's Behavior Intervention Plan at school.  Mr. Stephen also attended several ARDs to provide input to our son's teachers on what he was working on and to give his recommendations.  Additionally, he would follow up with my husband and me to discuss areas that we felt our son needed to improve on.  Our son is 20 years old and what a difference Mr. Stephen has made on his life!

 

our son has a 3.9 GPA, earned a black belt in Taekwondo, and is an Eagle Scout!

  • Joe & Brook Z.

Stephen has worked with our 16 year old son since he was 2 years old. Without a doubt, our son would not be where he is today without Stephen's assistance and guidance. He has a 3.9 GPA, earned a black belt in Taekwondo, and is an Eagle Scout. He will be pursuing his undergraduate degree at a major state university in a couple of years. When we started with Stephen, our son did not speak and was developmentally delayed. The ABA program that Stephen employs is perfectly suited for children under the spectrum. We consider Stephen a part of our family. He is a man of character and has a singular gift to help children.

 

UNIQUE ABILITY TO CONNECT WITH OUR SON.

  • Clayton & Paula H.

Stephen is a great role model and his unique ability to connect with our son has encouraged him to learn and relate better with peers and adults in various community roles.

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