About Excel Speech Therapy Center
Excel Speech Therapy Center, Inc is a centrally located private practice specializing in providing speech and language therapy services to children, teens, and adults. Excel therapists are energetic and dedicated to providing quality therapy services in family-centered clinics. Excel therapists are highly skilled, state licensed, and nationally certified.
Meet Our Staff.
Katherine, owner of Excel Speech Therapy Center for over 16 years, is originally from Turlock, CA. A family friend encouraged her to explore the field of speech pathology since Katherine babysat for many families, was an instructional assistant for children with special needs and enjoyed working with children. She received her Masters at California State University Fresno and completed an internship in the skilled nursing facilities. Katherine thoroughly enjoyed interacting with the patients and staff and learning how to complete Modified Barium Swallow studies and diet modifications for patients in the SNFs. She moved to Los Angels to become a traveling speech therapist in the schools, then moved back home to Turlock shortly thereafter, working for a private pediatric practice in Modesto for several years. After a few years, she decided to move to San Diego to be near the beach and open up her own private practice. While Excel was starting up, Katherine became a traveling speech therapist for the San Diego schools and worked evenings and weekends as a home health contractor and in skilled nursing facilities. Within a year, Excel flourished and Katherine decided to dedicate all of her time and energy into the business, hiring two SLPs. Excel Speech now has clinics in San Diego, Chula Vista and San Marcos. Katherine enjoys collaborating with Excel staff and continues to strive to streamline the business to provide excellent speech therapy services to Excel’s families at our family oriented clinics. Contact at firstname.lastname@example.org
M.A., CCC-SLP - Brigid has worked as a speech-language pathologist since August 2005. Brigid, originally from Athens, Georgia, received a baccalaureate degree in Music Therapy from Immaculata University in PA and received a Master's degree in Speech Language Pathology from the University of Memphis. She is a licensed and certified speech-language pathologist and a current member of ASHA.
Originally, from Athens, Georgia, Brigid began volunteering at a camp for youth with disabilities when she was 15 and worked in camps until she graduated from her undergraduate program. She found her passion in working with children and adolescents who did not communicate in the “typical” verbal way. She found that music and using a more total communication approach opened the pathways to be able to communicate. Brigid is certified by The Hanen Program® to teach the It Takes Two To Talk course, The More Than Words course, and the Talkability course for parents. She has been trained and received certifications in PECS (the Picture Exchange Communication System), PROMPT, SCERTS, and Beckman Oral Motor Technique.
Aside from providing speech-language evaluations and individual and group therapy, Brigid has provided parent education through running More Than Words, a program for parents of children with autism spectrum disorder. She is dedicated to involving parents and family in the child’s treatment to reach the best outcomes. Contact at email@example.com
M.S., CCC-SLP: Janet is originally from Western Massachusetts and received her Master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology at Southern Connecticut State University. She moved to San Diego in August 2008 where she earned her California license and Certificate of Clinical Competence. Her professional experience includes work in school-based and clinic settings with children and adolescents who have a variety of communication needs, including deficits in language, pragmatics, articulation, motor speech, fluency, and voice. Janet is trained in the following areas: The Hanen Program’s® It Takes Two to Talk, More Than Words, and TalkAbility, SCERTS®, Introduction to PROMPT: Technique, Bridging PROMPT Technique to Intervention, and Lindamood-Bell’s LiPS: The Lindamood Phoneme Sequencing® Program for Reading, Spelling, and Speech, and LAMP (Language Acquisition for Motor Planning). Janet provides individual and group (BUDS) speech-language therapy in the Kearny Mesa and South Bay clinics. She currently leads Hanen’s More Than Words® program on Tuesday evenings.
Rachel graduated with her Master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology from San Diego State University. Prior to becoming a speech-language pathologist, she worked as an elementary school teacher and has a passion for literacy. Rachel is certified by The Hanen Program® to teach More Than Words® and TalkAbility® courses. She has also been trained and received certifications in PRT (Pivotal Response Training), PECS (the Picture Exchange Communication System), PROMPT (PROMPTS for Restructuring Oral Muscular Phonetic Targets), and Lindamood-Bell’s Seeing Stars® program. She provides individual and group (BUDS) speech-language therapy at the Kearny Mesa and San Marcos clinics and also coordinates Excel’s SPLASH therapy program. She currently leads Hanen’s More Than Words® program on Tuesday evenings. Contact at firstname.lastname@example.org
Morgan Frazier, M.S. SLP: Morgan received her Master’s in Speech-Language Pathology at Baylor University in Waco, TX. She is originally from Minnesota and recently moved to San Diego. Morgan’s experience includes treatment and evaluation of children with articulation, expressive/receptive language, and pragmatics disorders. She also has clinical experience in early intervention and language and literacy treatment in both individual and group settings. She is passionate about working to support each child in achieving his or her goals in a positive, fun, and family-oriented manner.
Michelle Trenka, M.A., CCC-SLP: Michelle received her Master's in Speech-Language Pathology at San Diego State University. She coordinates and provides individual and group (BUDS) speech-language therapy at the Kearny Mesa and South Bay clinics. Michelle's clinical experience includes working with adults and children in a variety of settings including: preschool, elementary school, private practice, and outpatient clinics. Michelle became passionate about working with children with speech and language disorders after her nephew's diagnosis of autism and her involvement in his speech therapy program. Her experience sparked a desire to help children communicate. She is very passionate about her work and strives to make her therapy sessions individualized to support each child's needs. She is a strong believer in a collaborative approach and encourages family involvement throughout the therapy process. Contact at Michelleexcelspeech@gmail.com
Laurel is originally from Wisconsin and received her Master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. She recently moved from the Bay Area where she worked in the school setting with students from pre-school through middle school. There she gained experience supporting children with a wide range of speech-language abilities and challenges in the areas of pragmatic language, fluency, expressive and receptive language, motor speech, and articulation. She has a passion for helping children gain independence and confidence in their communication skills. Laurel believes in individualized, fun, and functional family-based therapy. She is excited to join the team at the Chula Vista clinic. Contact at: email@example.com
Katie Ayres, M.S. SLP Katie received a Masters of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology. After attending graduate school in Nashville, Tennessee, she is happy to be back in her home town of San Diego. She has specialized in working with children with hearing loss who are learning to listen and speak, and has clinical experience working with toddlers, children, and teens with a variety of communication impairments in both individual and group treatment settings. Katie is passionate about providing family-centered, individualized speech-language services for her patients and their families. She currently provides group and individual therapy at our San Marcos and Kearny Mesa clinics.
Allison Catalano, M.A., CCC-SLP: Allison is originally from Ellicott City, Maryland and moved to San Diego in the summer of 2018. She attended graduate school at the University of Maryland, College Park, where she received her Master's degree in Speech-Language Pathology. After graduation, she worked in the school setting, providing individual and group-based speech-language therapy to pre-school through later elementary school-age children with a variety of articulation, expressive and receptive language, fluency, voice, and social/pragmatics needs. During this time, she especially developed a passion for helping children with intensive needs to develop functional communication. She believes in creating a positive, child-directed, and family-oriented therapeutic environment that emphasizes the use of evidence-based practice. She is trained in the use of PROMPT (PROMPTS for Restructuring Oral Muscular Phonetic Targets).
Excel’s Speech-Language Pathologists are CA licensed and members of ASHA. Our therapists continue to obtain evidence based certifications and continuing education curriculum, including the following:
- PECS (Picture Exchange Communication System)
- Beckman Oral Motor Technique
- PROMPT (PROMPTS for Restructuring Oral Muscular Phonetic Targets)
- Social Thinking® curriculum.
- Hanen’s It Takes Two to Talk®
- Hanen’s More Than Words®
- Hanen’s Talkability®
- Lindamood-Bell’s Lindamood Phoneme Sequencing® Program for Reading, Spelling, and Speech (LiPS®)
- Lindamood-Bell’s Seeing Stars for Reading and Spelling
- LAMP (Language Acquisition for Motor Planning)
- PRT (Pivotal Response Treatment)