My Favorite Therapists
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Our highly skilled team of BCBAs, RBTs, behavioral therapists and specialty therapists communicate and work together to increase your child’s success, independence, and functioning in daily life at home, at school and in the community.
We provide applied behavior analysis, speech therapy, feeding therapy and occupational therapy in our one of a kind, state of the art, 8,000 square foot therapy center throughout the day and week, as necessary and authorized for your child. In addition, ABA therapy is available at schools, in home and in the community.
Meet our team
Jay Katari is married to Kimmy Katari and is the father of four wonderful boys. Jay was born in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. He moved to Florida in 1991 to finish his senior year of high school at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. After high school, he went on to Florida State University where he majored in Business Administration and Marketing.
Jay is a serial entrepreneur with a passion for building amazing companies with amazing company cultures. He is very excited to serve My Favorite Therapists’ clients and their families and do all that he can to help to make their lives better. Jay is very passionate about giving back to the community, sitting on the Board of Directors of Autism Speaks of Broward County, the Board of Directors of FAU’s Center for Autism and Related Disabilities, the Love Boca Homeless Charity, and the Board of Directors of The Boca Raton Police Foundation.
My Favorite Therapists is a very special place for Jay, having created a place where his passion for success translates to the clients getting the very best therapies available, all in one incredible place.
Kimberly Katari, best known as “Kimmy” to those who know her, is the quintessential working woman turned parental advocate. She was a practicing commercial litigation attorney, licensed in the states of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Florida. She met and married her husband 21 years ago and gave birth to 4 boys. While pregnant with her middle twin boys, Kimmy’s mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. Kimmy made the difficult but determined decision to leave the practice of law to focus her attention on her ailing mother and baby boys. Kimmy’s mother survived the breast cancer, but was diagnosed with ovarian cancer approximately two years later, when Kimmy was pregnant with her youngest son.
Having the twins provided a much different perspective as far as keeping track of her babies’ progression. Blake’s brother soon surpassed him on the pediatrician’s checklists of milestones. Kimmy and her husband brought Blake for early evaluation and were told that Blake simply had low muscle tone and was speech delayed. About a year later, however, Blake’s therapist suggested that they bring him to see a neurologist because it seemed as if Blake’s was “spacing out” often. That was the beginning of a whole new life for the Katari family…Blake was diagnosed on the autism spectrum with PDD-NOS.
Kimmy has been passionate about finding and doing all that she can for her son, Blake, since that diagnosis. Not one to give up, give in, or accept defeat, she became the voice, advocate, cheerleader, pincushion, and counselor for Blake. She watched, she listened, she learned, she read, she argued – all for her son. She cried often, yet maintained a strong, stable image and persona for the betterment of the rest of her family and those that she loved so deeply.
Kimmy quickly discovered that there is an entirely separate world out there for children with special needs and their families. In that world, values are different, priorities are different, relationships are different, and people are different. In that world, being different is good. It is special. Small things could be astronomical in that special world.
Over the next decade, Kimmy delved into the life of being a mom of a son with autism as well as a wife, daughter, and mom of three “typical” boys. She incorporated into their lives the gluten free casein free diet, doctors’ visits, RDI therapy, ABA therapy, OT therapy, equine therapy, speech therapy, social skills classes, Tomatis listening therapy, floortime therapy, and acupuncture because there was no telling what would be best for Blake.
She spent countless hours with therapists, teachers, paraprofessionals, school administrators, and doctors and even more on the phone with insurance companies in order to try to obtain the best services possible to help her son. It seemed as if time was passing by and yet Blake was at a standstill with the choices of local therapists and therapy clinics. Kimmy and her husband agreed to take a gamble and seek services outside of the state of Florida. She traveled alone with Blake and homeschooled him for months, leaving her supportive family behind, a very difficult and emotional time for the entire family.
Kimmy returned to Florida with the revelation that there needed to be better options for families like hers in Florida. Parents needed and deserved to focus their time and efforts on their special children and not drive around town from one appointment to another. It was rarely possible to describe and update each therapist on what another one had accomplished or noticed with Blake. Those therapists should be able to converse and share notes with one another. Kimmy strongly felt that children with special needs deserved to be in a caring, well-equipped environment conducive to optimizing the child’s capabilities and not in a small cluttered room. Most importantly, she wanted qualified, talented therapists who were not robotic or routine. She did not believe in leaving Blake with a “glorified babysitter”. She complained repeatedly to her husband, a self-made entrepreneur, and he encouraged her to “do something about it”. With his extensive business knowledge, acumen, and guidance, My Favorite Therapists began to emerge.
Rebeka Edge is a wife, mother of 4, and a BCBA. She attended the University of Central Florida earning a degree in Exceptional Education in 1993. She taught in the private and public school sector for over 15 years and opened the first program for autistic savant students in Orange County Public School. In 2006, she earned a double Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education and Teaching and Instruction from Touro University.
Rebeka decided to return to school after her oldest son received ABA therapy directly from a BCBA. She enrolled at Florida Institute of Technology in 2008. On the drive from Texas to Alaska (military move) in 2010, she learned that she passed the test and began her career as a BCBA, opening up practices across the United States. She was actively involved with advocacy and dissemination of ABA both locally and statewide, joining the Key Coalition of Alaska, Autism Society of Alaska and AKABA. She was also instrumental in the passing of HB-361 (Licensure of Behavior Analyst in Alaska) offering testimony and spearheading letter-writing campaigns.
Rebeka is passionate about the dissemination of ABA and the highest quality of services for individuals with developmental disabilities. She currently serves on the board of the Autism Society of Greater Orlando, is studying for the GRE and planning to earn a Ph.D. in Clinical Neuropsychology. In her free time, Rebeka can be found listening to an audiobook, painting or hanging out with her family.
Jesellie Hernandez is a multi-tasker and mother of two, born and raised in Boston
Massachusetts. She received her Master’s in Healthcare Administration in Innovation and Strategy from Advent Health University and has more than a decade of experience in her clinical background of Occupational Therapy and Administration.
Jesellie has a passion for helping children and families with autism and is always willing to lend a helping hand. She takes much pride in her work and is excited to be a part of the My Favorite Therapists Dream Team.
Nija Cotten-Barkley, MS, BCBA earned a Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis from the Florida Institute of Technology in Orlando and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Nija has over 10 years of experience in early intervention and parent training.
She started her career in 2009 working in social services serving children and families with and without developmental disabilities via in-home and group services. While providing these services, she observed the need for additional parent support to alleviate the challenges of raising a child with special needs and to improve their overall quality of life.
As a parent of a child with special needs, Nija decided to make a difference using behavior analysis as it made a difference for her family. Nija aspires to provide the highest standard of quality and evidence-based interventions for children that includes comprehensive and effective parent training.
Winter Park • Lake Buena Vista • Alafaya • Bithlo • Conway • Azalea Park • Lockhart•
Lake Nona Union Park • Downtown Orlando • Maitland • Pine Hills
We look forward to meeting you and creating a uniquely tailored therapy program for your child.