Karen Brown (Executive Director)
Karen Brown received her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Ithaca College and her Master’s Degree from Auburn University majoring in Rehabilitation Counseling. She was a doctoral student at George Washington University and completed all course work in Rehabilitation Leadership. Ms. Brown is a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor and Certified Brain Injury Specialist. In July of 2011, Karen was awarded a scholarship from the Harvard Business School Club in Washington DC to attend the Strategic Perspectives for Nonprofit Management Course at Harvard. She has served as adjunct faculty at George Washington University and taught several courses including Case Management and Disability Issues, Head Injury Rehabilitation as well as supervised practicum and internship students. She has spent over 35 years in the rehabilitation field working in Alabama, Texas and Virginia. In the late 1970’s, Ms. Brown worked out of the VA McGuire Hospital in Richmond as Liaison State Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor. She also developed and implemented two supported employment programs for individuals with psychiatric disabilities and intellectual disabilities in Northern Virginia.
Karen is past Chair of the Virginia Brain Injury Council and Virginia Alliance of Brain Injury Services Providers. She presently serves as past Chair of the Fairfax County Long Term Care Coordinating Council. She is a member of the Board of Directors for Life Circle Alliances and serves on George Mason University’s College of Health and Human Services Advisory Board. She also serves on Ohio Valley Center for Brain Injury Prevention and Rehabilitation Advisory Council. Ms. Brown is a graduate of Leadership Fairfax (Class of 2001) and has served as a team coach for the past few years. Karen is a member of Virginia Wounded Warrior Program, Region 1 Advisory Board.
Karen Luffred (Chief Operating Officer)
Karen has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Pennsylvania State University and a Master of Science degree from Virginia Commonwealth University/Medical College of Virginia Campus. She has been employed at Brain Injury Services since 1999.
Austin McNair (Marketing and Communications Coordinator)
Austin McNair is the Marketing and Communications Coordinator at Brain Injury Services. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy and Religion from Liberty University in 2012. Austin started working at Brain Injury Services in 2013 as a coordinator for the Volunteer Placement Program before transferring to his current role. He is a Northern Virginia native and currently lives in Arlington.
Katy Hollis (Administrative Assistant)
Katy Hollis is the administrative assistant at BIS. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in English and Anthropology from Albion College. Katy has been involved with BIS since 2010 as a client and as a volunteer with the Speaker’s Bureau. She has been employed at Brain Injury Services since 2015.
Lisa McCarthy (Director of Programs)
Lisa McCarthy, MA, NCC, CBIST is the Director of Programs. She has a Bachelor of Science degree from James Madison University, an Associate’s Degree in Respiratory Therapy from Shenandoah University and a Master of Arts Degree in Counseling from The College of New Jersey. She has been employed at Brain Injury Services since 1999.
NKenya Lassiter (Program Director, Adult Case Management Services)
NKenya Lassiter, MA, CRC, CBIS currently is the Program Director of Adult Case Management Services at Brain Injury Services. She has her bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Master’s Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling. NKenya has been employed at BIS since 2002 and has worked in the field and with persons with various disabilities since 2000.
Gail Bothwell (Senior Specialist Case Manager)
Gail Bothwell, CCM, CBIS is a Certified Case Manager with more than 20 years experience specializing in support for survivors of brain injury and their family members. She has practiced in rehabilitation settings for inpatient acute, subacute, residential, day treatment, outpatient and long term care settings. She provides community Case Management services for survivors of traumatic and acquired brain injury in the northern Virginia area, and has been employed with Brain Injury Services, Inc. since 2005.
Claire Callison-Aub (Case Manager)
Claire Callison-Aub, MSW, CBIS is an Adult Case Manager. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in English, and a Master’s in Social Work from George Mason University. She has been employed at Brain Injury Services since August 2009.
Sarah Pickford (Assistive Technology and Cognitive Rehabilitation Specialist)
Sarah Pickford, MS, OTR/L is an Assistive Technology and Cognitive Rehabilitation Specialist helping to initiate the BIS Assistive Technology Program. While obtaining her Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Design from North Carolina State University she studied product design, human factors/ergonomics, aesthetic appeal, and universal design principles. She also earned a Master of Science in Occupational Therapy from Shenandoah University and is licensed in the state of Virginia. She draws knowledge and skills from both of these fields as she helps clients find assistive technology that supports their ability to engage in the activities they find meaningful. Sarah has been employed at Brain Injury Services since 2012.
Brittany Henshaw (Assistive Technology and Cognitive Rehabilitation Specialist)
Brittany Henshaw, M.S. CCC-SLP is an Assistive Technology and Cognitive Rehabilitation Specialist. She has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders from James Madison University and a Master of Science Degree in Speech Language Pathology from East Carolina University.
Paula Levin-Alcorn (Case Manager)
Paula Levin-Alcorn, MSW, LCSW is an Adult Case Manager. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Towson University and a Master’s degree in Social Work from University of Maryland. Paula was a case manager at BIS from 1996 to 2001 and is delighted to be back.
Sara Aly (Case Manager)
Sara Aly, CBIS is a Bilingual Adult Case Manager at Brain Injury Services. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from her home country Egypt and her Master’s degree in Clinical Social Work from George Mason University. She began her experience with Brain Injury Services as an intern during her graduate program. She has been employed at BIS since 2011.
Iva Sesardic (Case Manager)
Iva Sesardic, MSW received her Bachelors of Social Work and Masters of Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University. She began working with survivors of brain injury during her undergraduate studies. She has been employed with Brain Injury Services since June 2015.
Joy Koeppen (Licensed Clinical Therapist)
Joy Koeppen, LCSW is the Licensed Clinical Therapist at BIS. Joy has been a Licensed Clinical Social Worker since 2001. She earned a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University in 1998. One of Joy’s passions is working with individuals with disabilities and their families. This passion began when she worked for Brain Injury Services as a Case Manager from 2000-2003. Joy returns to BIS with a variety of experiences including serving on the Board for Formed Families Forward since June of 2015, serving on the Fairfax Area Disability Services Board from 2007-2013, working in her own private mental health practice, providing clinical social work at a psychiatric hospital and assisting parents of children with special needs for Fairfax County Public Schools. She is excited to return to BIS and looks forward to getting reacquainted with colleagues from her previous years at BIS and getting to know new colleagues, clients and programs.
Child and Adolescent Services
Jo Thompson (Program Director, Children and Adolescent Services)
Jo Thompson, LCSW, CBIS is the Program Director for the Child & Adolescent Program. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from The College of William & Mary and a Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Alabama. She is credentialed as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Certified Brain Injury Specialist, and Positive Behavior Support Facilitator. She has been with Brain Injury Services, Inc. since 2003.
Brooke Annessa (Pediatric Case Manager)
Brooke Annessa, MSW, CBIS is a Case Manager in the Child and Adolescent Program at Brain Injury Services. She received her Bachelor’s degree in psychology from George Mason University and her Master’s Degree in Clinical Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University where she was also the recipient of VCU’s Social Justice Award. Her passion for advocacy continues both in her role as an Educational Specialist supporting the IEP process for clients and also in her leadership in local and statewide advocacy efforts. In addition to her professional passion for the disability community Brooke is the mother of a child with a brain injury – giving her a unique perspective as she works with clients. Brooke is a Certified Brain Injury Specialist and is also preparing for her Clinical Social Work Licensure. She has been with Brain Injury Services since 2009.
Amy Choi (Pediatric Case Manager)
Amy Choi, MSW is a Pediatric Transitional Case Manager in the Child and Adolescent Program. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Communications from City College of New York and Master’s degree in Social Work from Adelphi University of New York. Amy has experiences working with various populations especially children with special needs and adult mental health. Amy also had exposure to the legal system with the revolving door effect and struggles of homelessness and substance abuse. As an employee of BIS, she is happy to return to work with the population she is most passionate about- children and families. She looks forward to help families navigate the system to ensure BIS consumers are connected to the right resources.
Community Outreach & Volunteer Programs
Michelle Thyen (Director of Community Engagement)
Michelle Thyen, CVA is the Director of Community Engagement. She has a Bachelor's Degree from Loyola College in Maryland and a Graduate Certification from Goucher College in Baltimore, Maryland. She has also obtained her CVA, Certification in Volunteer Administration. She has been employed with Brain Injury Services since 2002.
Bob Cerminaro (Vocational Specialist)
Robert Cerminaro is a Vocational Specialist in the Vocational Program at B.I.S. He received a Bachelors Of Science degree in Individual & Family Studies from Penn State University. Bob is originally from Scranton, Pennsylvania and currently resides in Belmont Bay, Virginia. In his leisure time, he enjoys watching 'Football', listening to 'Classic Rock' music, and walking his english bulldog 'Miles'.
Samuel Knight (Vocational Specialist)
Samuel Knight is a Vocational Specialist in the Vocational Program. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Social Science from Tulane University. He has been employed at Brain Injury Services since October 2015.
Kimberlee Baugh (Clubhouse Manager)
Kimberlee Baugh, CBIS is the Clubhouse Manager at the ADAPT Clubhouse. She has a Bachelor's degree in Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University. Kimberlee has been employed by Brain Injury Services since August 2011.
Dyanna Citizen (Unit Coordinator)
Dyanna Citizen, MA is a Unit Coordinator at the ADAPT Clubhouse. She has a Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Old Dominion University. Dyanna also has experience working with survivors of domestic violence, mental illness, substance abuse, and brain injuries. Dyanna has been employed at Brain Injury Services since November 2015.
Emily Stickford (Unit Coordinator)
Emily is a Unit Coordinator at ADAPT Clubhouse and has been working at Brain Injury Services since 2016. She graduated with her Bachelor's in Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University and graduated with her Master's in Social Work from George Mason University. Emily is dedicated to helping support individuals to live a life they enjoy.
Zachary Daniel (Program Manager)
Zachary Daniel, CBIS is the Manager of the Brain Injury Services of Fredericksburg office. He has a Bachelor of Science degree from Mary Washington University. He has been employed at Brain Injury Services since 2008.
Laura KilKenny (Activities Coordinator)
She has a Bachelors of Arts in Psychology from the University of North Texas. With a back ground in fitness as a Zumba, Zumba Toning, Zumba Step Instructor, R.E.D. Warrior Instructor, and Dance teacher, she has a passion for Wellness. Nutrition, art, and yoga are a few of her hobbies.Helping people find there way to self empowerment, wellness, creative self expression, and positive community interactions are a few of the things that inspire her..
Rebecca Miller (Community Coordinator)
Rebecca Miller, CBIS is the Community Coordinator for the Brain Injury Services of Fredericksburg office. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Valdosta State University, and a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of Georgia. She has been employed at Brain Injury Services since 2011.
Markita Gilbert (Case Manager)
Markita Gilbert, MS, CBIS is the Fredericksburg area Case Manager. She has a Master of Science degree in Human Services with a Specialization in Counseling from Capella University. She has been employed at Brain Injury Services since 2007.
Pediatric Case Management
Taryn Goodman, MA, QMHP (Pediatric Case Manager)
Taryn received her Bachelor’s degree in Women’s Studies with a focus on social justice issues from Chatham College for Women located in Pittsburgh, PA. Not feeling fully satisfied with her understanding of the human experience, she decided to return to Virginia Commonwealth University where she received her second Bachelor’s degree in Forensic Anthropology. Most recently, Taryn has completed her Master’s degree in Forensic Psychology at the American School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University in Washington D.C. Taryn prides herself on her ability to assist individuals with finding their voice and promoting self-advocacy.
Julianne Berg (Case Manager)
Julianne Berg, MSW, CBIS is an Adult Case Manager serving Loudoun County. She received her Bachelor’s degree in social work from George Mason University and her Master’s Degree in Clinical Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University. She has specialized in working with people with disabilities since 1993. She joined Brain Injury Services in 2011.
Prince William Office
Jennifer Ardis (Case Manager)
Jennifer Ardis, MSW, CBIS is an Adult Case Manager for Prince William and Fauquier counties and conducts intakes for both counties as well. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree for the College of Notre Dame of Maryland and a Master’s of Social Work degree from George Mason University. She has been employed at Brain Injury Services since 2006.
James Parker (Case Manager)
James Parker, MSW, is an Adult Case Manager at Brain Injury Services for Prince William County, as well as select areas in Fairfax County. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Virginia and his Master’s degree in Clinical Social Work from George Mason University. James has been employed with Brain Injury Services since 2015.
Amanda Holsinger-Jenkins (Case Manager)
Amanda Holsinger-Jenkins, MPA is an Adult Case Manager in Winchester. She graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice and a Master’s in Public Administration. She joined Brain Injury Services in 2016.