WHO WE ARE

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Stacie Rulison, M.S., M.Ed, BCBA, LBA 

Business Partner and Practitioner

Skills Group Facilitator and Individual Services

Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) and Licensed Behavior Analyst (LBA)

UCLA PEERS Curriculum Certified (an evidence-based social skills intervention)

​Stacie is the former co-owner of Simply Social, LLC. In the 3 years Simply Social was operational, Stacie facilitated many teen, school-based, after school, parent, university-based, and adult workshops and group classes. The curriculum was based on the UCLA PEERS curriculum, and modified to expand content  and data collection based on clinical assessment. The social communication training was an evidence-based framework integrating behavioral and cognitive methodologies with didactic and Socratic instruction, live and video modeling, rehearsal, coaching and feedback in the moment, and pre and post data collection. Individual sessions were also facilitated to enhance social, communication, and adaptive skill knowledge in a more intensive setting. 

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Lisa Espinoza, M.Ed., Behavior Therapist

Business Partner and Practitioner

Skills Group Facilitator, Employment Specialist, and Individual Services

Practicum completed to test for BCBA credential

UCLA PEERS Curriculum Instructor (an evidence-based social skills intervention)

​Lisa Espinoza has been an advocate for children and families effected by autism for over 10 years.  She was a catalyst to initiating the Michigan autism insurance legislation initiative, partnering with other families to start the grassroots movement Autism Insurance for Michigan (AIM). Through this process she developed relationships with legislators, universities, lobbyists, and autism support organizations. Since that time, Lisa has pursued a career in behavior analysis, completing her coursework and practicum hours to test for the BCBA credential.  She is working toward the ACRE certification to support customized employment and has led employment coordination for individuals with disabilities overseeing employer development, site development, job coaching, and work experiences.  Lisa has provided intervention services to children, teens, and adults implementing applied behavior analysis (ABA) methodology and implementing group and individualized social and communication skills interventions with Simply Social, LLC for the past 3 years.

 

 

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Johnny Wenzel, M.A., Behavior Therapist

Clinical Practitioner

Skills Group Facilitator, Employment Specialist, and Individual Services

Johnny Wenzel received his master's degree in applied behavior analysis (ABA) at Michigan State University in 2019. He previously served as the support services coordinator for Spartan Project SEARCH at MSU, where some of his responsibilities involved supervising and training job coaches, coordinating the navigation training and peer mentoring programs, and developing and maintaining partnerships with employers. Johnny has also supported clients from Community Mental Health with programming to improve adaptive and daily living skills. Johnny first became interested in supporting individuals with disabilities at a young age after getting involved in peer support programs for friends with autism and other developmental disabilities. He hopes to use his skills and experiences to improve the support network for teens and adults with disabilities, and to provide better opportunities for those individuals to live independent and self-determined lives.

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 Missy Vitek-Maurer, Teacher-St. Gerard Catholic School

Social & Employment Skills Facilitator, Employment Specialist

Missy is an experienced and outstanding facilitator coming from an educational background. She taught numerous social communications and employment classes at Simply Social, LLC in the two years she worked with the organization. Missy currently teaches at St. Gerard Catholic School in Lansing, and previously was a middle school teacher at St. Johns Middle School. She also coordinated the LINKS program at St. Johns Middle School. We appreciate Missy's dedication and expertise in working with teens and adults in the program.

 Mason Rulison, Student at Lansing Community College (LCC)

Social & Employment Skills Coach

Mason has been social and employment coaching for several years, joining as a high school student who served as a LINK for students with disabilities in high school. Mason is currently studying radiology technology at LCC, and works with Balance MI-Skills part-time. He does an amazing job helping with class procedures and connecting with participants in the program, and we value his commitment to the program. Mason loves animals and has a yellow Labrador Retriever.  He also plays intramural soccer and volleyball and enjoys traveling, camping, and watching and attending sporting events. 

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Sophie Beeckman, MSU Graduate Student

Social & Employment Skills Coach

Sophie graduated from Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Arts and Humanities and will soon be attending graduate school in Applied Behavior Analysis at MSU. She started working with individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities her first year of college when she volunteered with Open Spot Theatre Company. She has since worked as a Navigation Trainer with Project SEARCH, an Executive Board Member for MSU's Project SEARCH Peer Mentoring Program, and a Social and Employment Coach with Balance Mi-Skills. She also conducted research to evaluate sense of belonging and community inclusion in Spartan Project SEARCH graduates. In her free time Sophie enjoys crocheting and other crafty things, hiking, and spending time with my dogs and other

Analiese Huffman, Wayne State University

Social & Employment Skills Coach

Analiese is a student at Wayne State University finishing up her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology Honors and Business Administration, with an honors co-major. She will soon be attending graduate school at Wayne State University to pursue a Master’s of Business Administration. Analiese is a member of a student organization on  campus called Best Buddies where she interacts in many social settings with adolescents and young adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities. Previously, Analiese was an ABA technician, working with children 18mo-18yrs. In her free time she enjoys coaching girls softball, reading, golfing, and hanging out with her friends. 

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Becky Swender, St. Johns High School

Social & Employment Skills Coach

Becky is a Media Center Specialist for St. Johns Public Schools. Becky has 10 plus years working with individuals with disabilities in a classroom setting, which she did before becoming a Media Center Specialist. When she worked in the CI classroom, she worked with students with autism and other developmental and intellectual disabilities, and learned about and used behavioral strategies and procedures. She also knew it was an amazing opportunity to help others! Becky enjoys working with teens and adults in learning to better their lives by obtaining better social and relationship skills. Becky is married to Jeremy and has three children. In her free time she loves to read, go camping, and be with her family.