Meet Our Team
In-home & Clinic-based Occupational Therapy
Nikki Lynch, MS, OTR/L
Nikki Lynch is a pediatric occupational therapist at Chicago Occupational Therapy. Originally from Kansas City, Missouri, Nikki completed her bachelor’s degree at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and her master’s degree at Rockhurst University. Prior to working at Chicago Occupational Therapy, she worked as a paraprofessional in Blue Valley School District.
Nikki has experience working with children with Down Syndrome, autism, and developmental delays in school and outpatient settings. When treating a client, she takes a multidisciplinary approach, collaborating with the child’s behavioral therapist, physical therapist, speech-language pathologist, physician, or any other professionals working with the child. This helps her get a better picture of the child and provide the best possible treatment. She also values learning about what interests her clients and implementing that directly within sessions to make treatment more enjoyable and motivating.
Samantha Duff, OTD, OTR/L
Samantha is a pediatric occupational therapist at Chicago Occupational Therapy (COT). Originally from Des Moines, Iowa, Samantha completed her bachelor’s degree at Iowa State University and received her doctorate in occupational therapy from Creighton University in Omaha, NE. After graduating, Samantha moved to Salt Lake City, UT to begin her career as an occupational therapist specializing in pediatrics.
Samantha has worked in a variety of settings, including outpatient pediatrics, inpatient rehabilitation, and home health settings. Her pediatric experience includes working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADHD, Cerebral Palsy, chromosomal abnormalities, developmental delays, and more.
Prior to joining COT, Samantha has worked on multiple multidisciplinary teams and values communicating and collaborating across disciplines to provide the most effective and evidence-based care for kiddos and their families. Samantha firmly believes that a child’s most important occupation is play, and is always looking for new and creative ways to facilitate skill acquisition and learning through play-based interventions that challenges and empowers children.
Ashley Sturgeon, OTR/L
Ashley is a Chicago-based occupational therapist at Chicago Occupational Therapy (COT). Ashley earned her bachelor’s degree at Southern Illinois University and her master’s at Elmhurst University. During her master’s program, Ashley completed her Level II fieldwork at COT where she created and implemented individualized treatment plans for kiddos and their families.
Ashley has extensive experience working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, sensory processing difficulties, developmental delays, and other diagnoses in a variety of therapeutic and recreational settings, such as outpatient rehabilitation, in-home, and teletherapy.
Ashley has a passion for working with children and is dedicated to cultivating strong relationships with kiddos and caregivers to ensure family-centered care. She values interdisciplinary collaboration in its ability to meet the unique needs of each child she serves and help them reach their full potential.
Samantha Holzschu, OTR/L
Samantha is a pediatric occupational therapist at Chicago Occupational Therapy (COT). Samantha earned her bachelor’s degree at Purdue University and her master’s at Western Michigan University.
Samantha has worked in a range of settings, including inpatient rehabilitation, therapeutic day school, and outpatient pediatric care. Her pediatric experience includes working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, Down syndrome, visual motor deficits, sensory regulation difficulties, and more.
While completing her master’s program, Samantha’s passion for the field of OT led her to start her own podcast, advOcaTe, where she invites fellow occupational therapists and other medical professionals to explore niche areas of practice within the field of OT. Samantha values ongoing communication between clients, team members, and caregivers to provide the most comprehensive and individualized care to the kiddos she serves.
Brenna Casey, OTR/L
Brenna is a Chicago-based occupational therapist at Chicago Occupational Therapy (COT) with comprehensive experience working with pediatric and adult populations. Brenna earned her bachelor’s degree at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, Illinois and her master’s at Lewis University in Romeoville, Illinois.
Brenna has worked in a variety of settings, including in-patient and out-patient rehabilitation, elementary school, and a therapeutic preschool & clinic. Her clinical experience includes working with a diverse range of pediatric and adult clients with autism spectrum disorder, sensory regulation difficulties, developmental delays, and neurological, orthopedic and cardio-vascular diagnoses.
Brenna’s specializes in fine motor and gross motor skill development, sensory processing, handwriting development, and sensory-based feeding following a DIR/Floortime approach. She is phenomenal in building strong rapport with clients and caregivers, and values ongoing communication between fellow therapists, families, and clients to ensure optimal family-centered and multidisciplinary care.
Kendra Marais, OTR/L
Kendra is a Chicago-based pediatric occupational therapist at Chicago Occupational Therapy (COT). She earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Saint Louis University at Saint Louis, Missouri. Throughout her years of experience, Kendra has worked in a variety of settings such as hospitals, early intervention, pediatric outpatient clinics as well as a therapeutic preschool.
Kendra has extensive experience working with children ages birth-18 with a variety of diagnoses including, but not limited to, autism spectrum disorder, attention deficit disorder, sensory processing disorder, developmental delays, neurological conditions, genetic conditions, executive functioning deficits and feeding difficulties. Her specialities through continued education programs include Handwriting Without Tears, SOS Feeding Approach, Reflex Integration and sensory integration techniques.
As a clinician, Kendra values utilizing children’s interests to make therapy as fun, playful and engaging as possible. Kendra also prioritizes ongoing communication with families and other members of the child's team to ensure continuity of care and to help the child reach their full potential.
Asha Moonjely, OTR/L
Asha is an occupational therapist and trained with the team at Chicago Occupational Therapy (COT). Asha received both a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s degree in occupational therapy at Stony Brook University in New York. Asha is currently the lead OT at our pediatric therapy clinic in Belize.
Asha has pediatric occupational therapy experience with developmental delays, autism spectrum disorder, sensory processing difficulty, visual motor delays, and more. She has gained experience in schools, hospitals, sensory based clinics, and home health working with both adults and children with different needs.
Her love for travel therapy has taken Asha from her birthplace of Bronx, NY, to Texas, California, and now Belize City. She is excited to collaborate with like-minded dreamers and doers, explore the islands and jungle hikes, and become trilingual.
Nina Duric, Occupational Therapist
Nina is a Chicago-based pediatric occupational therapist at Chicago Occupational Therapy (COT). Nina received her Doctorate of Occupational Therapy at Midwestern University. She is most passionate about being able to support her clients and do something meaningful for the first time with them. Watching her kiddos meet milestones and complete goals are the most rewarding moments.
When she is not with clients Nina is running on the 606, cooking with her grandma, and trying all of the restaurants Chicago has to offer! Nina loves Lou Malnatti's large cheese deep dish (uncut, well done, butter crust). The islands of Croatia are her favorite places to travel to.
Ashley Rabell, Occupational Therapist
Ashley is a Chicago-based pediatric occupational therapist at Chicago Occupational Therapy (COT). Ashley earned her master's degree at Gannon University. She is passionate about working with children! Her kiddos are each so amazingly unique. She loves facilitating interventions that are challenging and engaging to help them build the skills they need to reach their greatest potential. Watching kiddos grow and achieve their goals everyday is beyond rewarding to Ashley!
Outside of work, Ashley loves to travel, cook, explore local festivals and spend time on the lake. She also loves spending time working with the Best Buddies of Illinois program!
Maria Lagowska, OTD, OTR/L
Maria is a Chicago-based pediatric occupational therapist at Chicago Occupational Therapy (COT). She earned her Doctorate of Occupational Therapy at Midwestern University. Maria is passionate about working with children and helping them reach their full potential. She loves promoting fine motor, visual motor, and gross motor skills through play with her kiddos. Ensuring her clients' interests and favorite toys are incorporated into sessions is her top priority as sessions become more meaningful.
In her free time, Maria loves to try new restaurants, take walks by the lake, travel, and spend time with family/friends. She is a dual citizen of Poland and the U.S. She was born in Poland and lived there until 11 years old. She loves to go back to Europe to explore more of Poland and other countries of interests, such as Spain and Portugal.
Innovative Care Plans
Our team of therapists creates personalized care plans that target individual occupational therapy goals and incorporate every child’s unique learning style.
Multiple Therapeutic Settings
Chicago Occupational Therapy provides in-home and clinic-based therapy, as well as services at CST Academy, the practice’s therapeutic preschool-style program.
FREE Information Packet
Contact our office to request free information about Chicago Occupational Therapy including significant details about our program, team members, and more.