Education Specialists

The staff at Fawkes Academy includes certified teachers with extensive experience in special education, Board Certified Behaviour Analysts, and interventionists trained in applied behaviour analysis – more commonly known as ABA.

In my role as Principal, I strive to create an inclusive, joyful, and engaging learning environment that supports the strengths and needs of all students. I began teaching in 1991 and have many specializations, including Special Education. As a parent of three grown children, including one with a diagnosis of Autism, I understand the critical need to collaborate with parents and caregivers on each child’s educational journey.


LESLIE VAN DUSEN, PRINCIPAL AND CLASSROOM TEACHER

I have a doctorate in Psychology, with an emphasis in Behaviour Analysis, and a minor in Special Education. I am also a Board Certified Behavior Analyst – Doctoral level. I am the clinical oversight for the students at Fawkes Burnaby and Richmond. I have been providing behavioural interventions to children with ASD for over 14 years.


ELIZABETH ATHENS, CLINICAL DIRECTOR
I have a Bachelor of Commerce degree with a double major in Marketing and Finance and a minor in Economics. I am the board designate and business manager for Group ABA Children’s Society, which includes Fawkes Academy and the GABA Vancouver program. My role includes full cycle accounting and human resources management for the society, as well as transfer of information between the board of directors, personnel, and Fawkes’ Parent Advisory Council.


JOHN MCGREGOR, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology, a Bachelor of Education, and additional qualifications in Special Education. I am a certified teacher in both Ontario and British Columbia and have worked with children and youth with a variety of learning needs since 2012. I am currently the teacher for the High School class at Fawkes Burnaby.


ANNA DIFILIPPO, CLASSROOM TEACHER

Hi folks! Amanda here. I’m thrilled to be part of an amazing team that provides accessible education to all students. I have a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology (hence the daily class walks and dance parties!), a Bachelor of Education, and a passion for learning how kids work. My 13-year teaching career is all over the map — literally – from South Korea, to Spain, to Saskatchewan, and now BC, where I currently provide academic programming for students at Fawkes Burnaby and love it!


AMANDA MARSDEN, CLASSROOM TEACHER

I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology with an Education minor in Learning and Developmental Disabilities. I am also a Board Certified Assistant Behaviour Analyst. I am in charge of academic instruction for the students at Fawkes Burnaby. I have been working with children with different learning needs since 2005.


ALAINA MILICEVIC, ONLINE LEARNING TEACHER

I have a Master of Science degree in Autism Spectrum Disorders, a graduate certificate in Gifted and Talented Education, a certificate in Early Childhood Education and a certificate to teach English as a Second Language. I began teaching in 2005 and have been focusing on support of students with ASD and other learning difficulties since 2008. I have experience teaching children and adults in a variety of school, home and community settings.


TYFANY MCDAID, CLASSROOM TEACHER (On Maternity Leave)

I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology with an emphasis in Child Development and Educational Psychology. I am the Program Coordinator for the students at Fawkes Burnaby. I have been working with children with different learning needs in school, home, and community programming since 2005.


KELSEY OGILVY, CLASSROOM TEACHER

I started working at Fawkes Academy as a Behavioural Interventionist in 2017. Since then, I have moved into the role of Program Supervisor and Classroom Teacher working in both clinical-based educational settings and on private home teams. My early experiences in the field revealed my passion for working with individuals facing unique obstacles. I enjoy problem solving and being creative by finding new and exciting ways to teach individuals so that they have a positive and successful experience. I aim to have a diversified background of experiences that will allow me to be an agile and adaptable educator. I hope to be an agent that helps to enable individuals to develop the necessary skills to acquire a higher quality of life and have control over their lives.


NISHA N, CLASSROOM TEACHER

I have been working in special education and mental health field since 2002 supporting children and young adults with variety of developmental disabilities in both community and school setting.   Last 10 years I have spent working in learning support for Vancouver and West Vancouver School Districts providing curriculum adaptations and modifications as well as executive and social skills training for elementary and high school students. I have a BA in Psychology with a minor in Special Education from Simon Fraser University and Masters in Applied Behavior Analysis from Western University.


TANJA ZURKOVIC, CLASSROOM TEACHER

I am the Distributed Learning Teacher for Fawkes Academy. I have a Masters of Education and a specialist in Special Education from Nipissing University. In addition, I have my Bachelors of Education degree from Nipissing University. Previously, I have taught in the public system in Nova Scotia as the Learning Disabilities Specialist and I have experience as both a resource teacher (in British Columbia) and classroom teacher (in Alberta). I truly enjoy supporting students from wherever they are at on the learning continuum. Furthermore, I understand the importance of working in collaboration with the families and team members to support a positive educational path for all students.


JAMIE CARLSON, ONLINE LEARNING TEACHER

Hello! I completed my Bachelor of Honours and Concurrent Education from Queen’s University fresh out of high school. However, my passion for education was sparked when I discovered alternative ways of teaching during Outdoor and Experiential Education at Queen’s as well as the Special Education Teacher’s Training certificate at Vancouver Island University once I relocated to Campbell River, BC. For a decade I worked as a support provider one on one with students in their family homes as a behavioural interventionist and tutor with a gradual transition to learning consultant and distributed learning teacher over the past 5 years. I enjoy working collaboratively as a team with students, families, and the support providers to create individualized education programs specialized for learner success!


JANE HAMILTON, ONLINE LEARNING TEACHER

Although I had been pursing my education in counselling psychology before arriving at Fawkes Academy in 2017, it was not until meeting these wonderful kids that I focused my specialization on this population of children and youth. I worked as a behavioural interventionist after completing a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology at Western University and a Professional Diploma in Counselling Psychology at Vancouver College of Counsellor Training. While I worked at Fawkes Academy, familiarizing myself with ABA principles, I simultaneously completed a Masters in Counselling Psychology at Yorkville University. After completing an 8-month practicum with Child & Youth Mental Health, I transitioned into the role as counsellor. I have a cognitive-behavioural approach to therapy and incorporate mindfulness practices to enhance self-regulation. 


ANNABELLE PICARD, COUNSELLOR AND COGNITIVE BEHAVIOUR THERAPIST

I am completing my Masters of Arts in Counselling Psychology from Adler University. I have a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Simon Fraser University, where I completed a major in Psychology and a minor in Human Development and Counselling. My clinical experience is greatly credited towards my time at Child Youth Mental Health (CYMH) in Chilliwack where I worked with children and adolescents, who either experienced a variety of concerns or issues, or were struggling with various diagnoses. In terms of counselling styles, I utilize a variety of constructs that I feel are appropriate at the time in therapy. I am most familiar with Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy (REBT), Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, and Mindfulness-Based Practices. I look forward to meeting and working with the students and creating a space where they feel safe to express themselves or continue to develop their personal goals.


VANESSA HERCUN, COUNSELLOR
I have certification in Early Childhood Education, Infant Toddler and Special Education. I am currently the Program Coordinator at the Fawkes Academy Richmond campus and have been supporting students with different learning needs at home, school and within the community since 1994, focusing on the support of students with ASD since 1997.


KAREN HARRIS, PROGRAM COORDINATOR

Bio coming soon


ZOHRAH, PROGRAM COORDINATOR

I have an Early Childhood Education Certificate. I have been working with students with learning disabilities and different learning needs since 2012. I am currently the Program Coordinator at the Fawkes Academy Richmond campus.


SASHA CARPENTER, PROGRAM COORDINATOR

Hi there! I am the Program Coordinator for our Distributed Learning Program on Vancouver Island. I started working as a Behaviour Interventionist in 2006 as a second job while preparing for Practical Nursing School. After working as an LPN and BI I realized that although both are rewarding, working with children diagnosed with ASD and other cognitive and developmental disabilities was far more enjoyable. I have worked with children and youth in both home and centre-based programs and continue to enjoy fostering strong relationships with the families I work with. 


FAU AVAIKI, ONLINE LEARNING PROGRAM COORDINATOR

I have a Masters of Education from the University of Washington, as well as a post-baccalaureate diploma in ABA from Capilano University. I have been working with children with Autism and other cognitive and developmental disabilities since 2009. I have worked with children and teenagers in school, home, one on one, and community settings.


SHAHEEN BHAGUDI, BEHAVIOUR ANALYST
I have a Master of Arts degree in Special Education with a concentration in Behaviour Disorders. I am also a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst. I am the Program Manager for the students at Fawkes Burnaby. I have been working with at risk children and youth, and children with autism for over five years.


SARA SHABABI-SHAD, BEHAVIOUR ANALYST
As a certified occupational therapist in Taiwan, I have worked with children with Autism, developmental delay, and neurological disorders since 2012. While I was pursuing a master’s degree in Early Intervention from Chung Gang University, I started to work in the field of Applied Behaviour Analysis as a behaviour interventionist in Taiwan. To further develop my knowledge, I spent 2 years working in New York and completed a Master’s program in Applied Behaviour Analysis from Teachers College, Columbia University in 2018. I have since become a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst (BCBA). During my time in New York, I worked in a self-contained classroom at a private preschool and an inclusion classroom at a public elementary school, providing services utilizing a Comprehensive Application of Behavior Analysis to Schooling (CABAS®). As a program supervisor at ABA Learning Centre, it is my goal to provide support for children’s learning and families’ well-being.


WAN-YI CHIU, BEHAVIOUR ANALYST
I have recently completed my Masters Degree from the University of Washington and became a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst in 2018. I began working in the field of Applied Behaviour Analysis in 2013 and have supported children aged 2-8 diagnosed with ASD in home, school and community settings. I value working collaboratively with families and other professionals and am passionate about helping children and their families achieve their goals. I believe that everyone has the potential to live a fulfilling life


HANNAH GEORGE, BEHAVIOUR ANALYST
I have been working with individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities since 2012. I have experience working in school, home, and community settings with individuals aged 2-21. I have a M.Ed in Special Education, with a concentration in Autism and Developmental Disabilities from the University of British Columbia. I am a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst (BCBA). I value working collaboratively with others, building parental capacity, and providing individualized support in order to improve learning and quality of life.


KATIE CHU-CHONG, BEHAVIOUR ANALYST
I have worked with children with special needs since 2013. Working in this field quickly became my passion, as I get to see students achieve their goals and help them reach their fullest potential. I have a Bachelor degree in Psychology and Linguistics from Simon Fraser University. I have also received my post-baccalaureate diploma in Applied Behaviour Analysis (Autism) from Capilano University. Currently, I am enrolled in the Master’s of Arts program in special education (Applied Behaviour Analysis) from Arizona State University.


GRACE MOK, BEHAVIOUR ANALYST
I have a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from the University of Victoria where I studied both child development and Applied Behavioural Analysis. I have also completed the Disability and Applied Behaviour Analysis program at Douglas College. I have worked with children with Autism and other developmental disabilities since 2005 in both a group and one-on-one setting.


LYNN SERVICE, CLASSROOM TEACHER & BEHAVIOUR ANALYST
I have been working in the field of ABA/VB since 2004. I have had experience working as a BI, a Lead BI, a Student Program Supervisor and now as a Program Supervisor in individual home programs, school and classroom settings, group therapy programs and social skills groups. I have had the pleasure of working with a wide array of ages and skill levels. I have worked collaboratively with SLPs, OTs, teaching staff, and other professionals from the autism community. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Kwantlen Polytechnic University. I did my BCaBA coursework through the Florida Institute of Technology. I plan to pursue a Masters degree in Special Education with specialization in autism and applied behaviour analysis in the future. There is nothing more rewarding then being part of a child’s progress and that is why I do the work I do.


KRISTEN KRINGHAUG, PROGRAM SUPERVISOR
I began working with children in the field of Applied Behaviour Analysis in 2007. I have worked with children with exceptionalities ranging from 20 months to 19 years old, and have experience in both home and centre-based programs. I have a Bachelors of Community Rehabilitation and Disability Studies from the University of Calgary and have completed the Disability and Applied Behaviour Analysis program at Douglas College. I have received my Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst (BCaBA) certification. Working in this field has always been exciting and rewarding as I get to see children reach their goals and help families along the way.


SARA PERALTA, PROGRAM SUPERVISOR
I began working with children in the field of Applied Behaviour Analysis in 2007. I have worked with children with exceptionalities ranging from 20 months to 19 years old, and have experience in both home and centre-based programs. I have a Bachelors of Community Rehabilitation and Disability Studies from the University of Calgary and have completed the Disability and Applied Behaviour Analysis program at Douglas College. I have received my Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst (BCaBA) certification. Working in this field has always been exciting and rewarding as I get to see children reach their goals and help families along the way.


SARA PERALTA, PROGRAM SUPERVISOR
I began working with children in the field of Applied Behaviour Analysis in 2007. I have worked with children with exceptionalities ranging from 20 months to 19 years old, and have experience in both home and centre-based programs. I have a Bachelors of Community Rehabilitation and Disability Studies from the University of Calgary and have completed the Disability and Applied Behaviour Analysis program at Douglas College. I have received my Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst (BCaBA) certification. Working in this field has always been exciting and rewarding as I get to see children reach their goals and help families along the way.


SARA PERALTA, PROGRAM SUPERVISOR

I have had the opportunity and privilege to work in the field of Autism and Applied Behaviour Analysis since 2017. I have experience supporting individuals on home teams, in intensive centre-based programs, as well as in preschool settings. I completed my undergraduate degree in Psychology at the University of British Columbia while supporting vulnerable youth through KidStart. The experience was transformative and guided me to pursue a career in a related field. While being on the ABA LC team, I have experienced first hand, how powerful and effective evidence-based strategies are in practice. Therefore, it is important to me to have a strong understanding of how the science of Applied Behaviour Analysis should inform my practice. I am currently enrolled in the master’s program at Arizona State University and have a continuing desire to support children affected by autism.


Jason Kuo, STUDENT PROGRAM SUPERVISOR

Since 2016, I have worked with individuals with autism and developmental disabilities in home, community and residential group home settings. I started working in the field as a program coordinator at a summer camp, which inspired me to pursue a Bachelors of Science degree in Psychology at the University of British Columbia. This line of work has been extremely rewarding, which is why I decided to continue my education in order to provide better and more effective support to individuals I work with. I have recently completed the Masters of Science program in Applied Behavioural Analysis at Queen’s University Belfast.


Tommy Liang, STUDENT PROGRAM SUPERVISOR

I have been working in the field of Applied Behaviour Analysis and Autism since 2017. I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Simon Fraser University and I am currently enrolled in a Masters of Arts in Applied Behaviour Analysis at Florida Institute of Technology. I had originally planned to pursue a Masters in Counselling when I started working at Fawkes Academy as a Behaviour Interventionist in the Fall of 2017. I quickly fell in love with this field and decided to pursue a Masters of Arts in Applied Behaviour Analysis instead. My favourite part of my job is seeing my students progress and getting the privilege of watching my students live up to their full potential.


JESSICA DEACON, STUDENT PROGRAM SUPERVISOR

I have been working with at risk children and youth for over five years. I always knew I wanted to work with children and youth, however it was not until I began to work with the GABA Program in 2018 when I decided I wanted to pursue a career as a Board-Certified Behaviour Analyst. I have experience working as a Behaviour Interventionist and a Lead Behaviour Interventionist before transitioning to my current role as a Student Program Supervisor. I have a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of British Columbia where I mainly focused on child development. I am currently attending Western University in order to obtain a Maser’s in Applied Behaviour Analysis. I value education and am passionate about helping children achieve their goals. Working in this field continues to be exciting and rewarding.


Raman Kainth, STUDENT PROGRAM SUPERVISOR

I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and a minors in Learning and Developmental Disabilities and Counselling from Simon Fraser University. I am currently enrolled in a Masters of Professional Education in Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) at Western University. I started to working in the field of ABA in 2013. I have provided behaviour intervention to children aged 2-12 with different learning profiles in their home, school, and clinical settings. I also worked as an Education Assistant in a private elementary school for one year and a preschool teacher for two years. As a piano teacher, I am passionate about incorporating musical elements into intervention programs. My goal is to enhance students’ motivation to learn and teach them functional skills to become independent.


Fiona Yau, STUDENT PROGRAM SUPERVISOR

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