Meg Scaling/OTRL
Galaxy Brain and Therapy Center®️ Owner

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Meg Scaling/OTRL is the owner of Galaxy Brain and Therapy Center®️

Meg states, "My favorite thing about Galaxy is the mission-driven value system that we all hold true to. I believe in the brain and body's ability to get better, and I think that building trusting relationships, empowering positive change, and helping clients and staff members alike move forward and give back is key to the joy I have in coming to work every day." Meg's expertise is in helping individuals gain independence through innovative whole-brain remediation exercise, as well as providing unique compensatory strategies for executive functioning deficits. Meg states, "The brain never stops making neuro-connections, and I will never stop believing in our client's ability to overcome!"

Meg Scaling/OTRL is the owner of Galaxy Brain and Therapy Center®️ and has been providing excellence in community-based occupational therapy for almost 20 years. She began private practice in 2001 and started her LLC in 2007. The LLC was proudly re-branded to Galaxy Brain & Therapy Center in February of 2017 when the first clinic was opened. Meg received her Occupational Therapy degree from Eastern Michigan University in 1999. Her clinical experience includes acute care, sub-acute rehabilitation, sensory integration certification, vestibular and concussion certification, pediatric therapy, drivers retraining, outpatient neurological rehabilitation, community-based intervention, and anxiety and PTSD exposure/desensitization therapy.

Support Staff

Shirley Ross Rehabilitation Tech

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Shirley Ross brings a wealth of experience and compassion to her role as a Rehabilitation Tech at Galaxy Brain and Therapy Center. With a longstanding commitment to helping others and a journey that intertwines with the very roots of the company, Shirley is an invaluable asset to both the clients and the staff.

Shirley's connection with Galaxy dates back to 2001, a time when the company wasn’t even a thought in the mind of its founder, Meg Scaling. In fact, Shirley was there right from the beginning, becoming Meg's first client. Through her dedication and determination, Shirley's progress served as a testament to the efficacy of the therapeutic techniques that would later define Galaxy Brain and Therapy Center.

In 2017, Shirley's journey came full circle when she officially joined the Galaxy team as part of the expansion of Life Skills Community Rehabilitation and Associates into the what is now Galaxy Brain and Therapy Center. Her transition from client to staff member was a natural progression, fueled by her genuine passion for helping others achieve their own transformative journeys.  Her infectious enthusiasm and dedication continue to inspire both colleagues and clients alike.

Drawing from her personal experience, Shirley is especially adept at connecting with clients on a profound level. As a former client herself, she understands the challenges they face and offers unwavering support, encouraging them not only during their therapy appointments but also in their daily endeavors. Her mantra is simple yet empowering: every individual is capable of reaching their goals, and she ensures that belief is instilled in each person she interacts with.

Shirley's impact extends beyond her role as a rehabilitation tech. She radiates positivity and joy, brightening up the atmosphere at Galaxy on a daily basis. Her dedication to giving back and supporting the staff embodies the core values of Galaxy Brain and Therapy Center.

When she's not devoting her time to helping others at Galaxy, Shirley finds joy in going to gospel concerts and doing outdoor activities such as mowing her lawn. A sports enthusiast, she passionately cheers on her favorite teams, the Tigers and U of M. 

To learn more about Shirley listen to her interview on the Coffee and Grit podcast and the Brainthropology Podcast where she shares her story!

MR. DARCY DIRECTOR OF SUPPORT SERVICES

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Mr. Darcy grew up on the outskirts of Boston, MA and is a recent Michigan transplant. His parents worked with the Guiding Eyes for the Blind and inspired him to pursue a life of service. He spent the first two years of his life training with NEADS World Class Service Dogs in a medium security prison and was inspirational to the men and the women that he had the privilege of working with in the correctional facilities.

Mr. Darcy loves being a part of the Galaxy family and prides himself on being able to bring joy to each and every person he meets. In his free time, Mr. Darcy loves swimming in the lake, spending time with family, and checking out all the best eating places in Ann Arbor.

Mr. Darcy is still an avid supporter of the NEADS program and is always actively raising money so that other dogs can learn to serve others the way he serves his Galaxy family.

OCCUPATIONAL THERAPISTS

COURTNEY WANG MHS, OTRL - CLINICAL DIRECTOR

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Courtney is a 2006 graduate of the Medical College of Georgia with a Master’s Degree of Health Science in Occupational Therapy and has been with Galaxy Brain and Therapy Center since 2010. She strives to be a well-rounded therapist who can assist her clients become more independent no matter how difficult their circumstances. She has found each client’s situation is always unique and enjoys problem-solving with them to develop the best solution for their needs.

Courtney is passionate about building a meaningful relationship with each client because she knows that real progress happens when a person feels seen, heard, and understood. She is passionate about meeting each client where they at the moment, learning their strengths, and making each therapy session about the client's needs and interests. She is also a huge proponent of self-advocacy.

Jessica Smith MOT, OTD, OTRL - EDUCATIONAL COORDINATOR

Jessica Smith

Jessica has been with Galaxy since 2011 when we were still called Life Skills Community Rehabilitation and Associates. Jessica’s intelligence, skill, empathy, compassion, and ability to make every client feel seen and safe, helped to develop Galaxy’s reputation as a leader in the therapy community. Jessica received a Masters Degree in Occupational Therapy from Wayne State University in 2010 and completed her Doctorate of Occupational Therapy Degree from Rocky Mountain University in 2020. She is a therapist that has extensive training and experience with seeing clients with complex conditions in their homes and in our clinic. She is a hands-on therapist that can do it all! She has a passion for using reflex integration to facilitate the nervous system into healing and uses this as a foundational component to build more complex skills for the rehabilitation process. When Jessica isn’t at work, you will find her spending time with her beautiful family (complete with two huge and wonderful fur babies) and looking for ways to connect and help others in her community.

DEBBIE LOFTUS, MS/OTRL - COMMUNITY DIRECTOR

Debbie Loftus

Debbie received her Bachelor of Science degree from Michigan State University and her Master of Occupational Therapy degree from Eastern Michigan University. She has experience in neurological rehabilitation, community reintegration, home care, orthopedics, and industrial rehabilitation.

Debbie is passionate about integrating the science of positive psychology into Occupational Therapy practice and helping clients to focus on their strengths instead of weaknesses in order to learn how to help people flourish and live their best lives. 🙂

Debbie is also enthusiastic about educating others about Occupational Therapy practice and has authored a book chapter titled: Documentation of Occupational Therapy Practice in the book: Preparing for the NBCOT Exam: 45 Days & Counting; in affiliation with Wayne State University’s Occupational Therapy Department. Debbie has a passion for occupational therapy, specifically in the area of TBI, and her main goal as a therapist is to enhance people’s quality of life through meaningful activities and occupation.

Debbie has natural skills and talent for creating compensatory strategies for home organization and executive functioning. Debbie has been with Galaxy Brain and Therapy Center from near inception and has a vision for implementing new treatment strategies in order to meet the unique needs of our clients.

 

 

ROSANNE DIZAZZO- MILLER PHD, OTRL

Rosanne DiZazzo-Miller

Rosanne received her bachelor’s degree from Adrian College, Michigan, her master’s degree in occupational therapy from Eastern Michigan University, and her doctoral degree from Nova Southeastern University, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. She serves on the faculty at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan.

Prior to teaching, she worked in clinical practice in traumatic brain and spinal cord injury rehabilitation, treating clients from pediatrics through late adulthood. She serves as a professional educator accreditation reviewer for the Distance Education and Training Council.

Research interests include family caregiver training for persons with dementia, various modes of instructional learning delivery, and outcomes research. She is a certified dementia practitioner, presenting at the state, national, and international level. Rosanne provides national board exam review sessions throughout the country based on her book Preparing for the National Occupational Therapy Board Exam: 45 Days and Counting. Her current memberships include the Michigan Occupational Therapy Association (MiOTA), International Society to Advance Alzheimer Research and Treatment (ISTAART), the Sloan Consortium, The National Association of Professional Women (NAPW), and the American Occupational Therapy Association.

Erin Fishman, MOT, OTRL

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Erin received her Bachelor of Health Science degree and Masters of Occupational Therapy degree from Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. She is currently a Ph.D. student at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida where she is working towards developing her skill sets in research and academia. Additionally, she also teaches as an adjunct professor in the occupational therapy program at Baker College in Auburn Hills, Michigan.

Erin strives to enhance TBI recovery through facilitating participation in meaningful occupations, or the things we need and want to do! Erin’s practice aims to build resilience, boost self-confidence, and empower people to live the lives they want to live. She has a passion for working with her clients in their own natural environments and communities. In doing so, she hopes that her clients will find a newfound sense of belonging in their own world.

Outside of her roles as a student, OT, and educator, her other meaningful occupations include gardening, riding her bike, and being a dog-mom to her pitbull, Belle.

Leanne Ma, MSOT, OTRL

Leanne Ma, MSOT, OTRL

Leanne comes to Galaxy with a Master's in Occupational Therapy at Western Michigan University, with job experience as varied as teaching a cadaver lab for an anatomy course at WMU, and managing the OT for a veteran's home in Texas.

Her passion for neurology led her to a career with Galaxy, and her love of learning makes her an amazing addition to the team, as she's always up to date on the latest and greatest practices and strategies!

When not at Galaxy, you can find her on the disc golf course, playing D & D or expressing herself creatively with paint and paper!

Jane Grimes, OT

Jane Grimes, OT

Jane is a life long learner, who started her journey at Eastern Michigan University with a degree in Occupational Therapy, traveled through many experiences working in psychiatric group homes, hospitals and her own practice until she learned reflex integration technique and felt that she had “come home.”

She learned the Masgutova Neurosensorimotor Reflex Integration (MNRI) in 2011, and loved learning how implementing reflex exercises can support the nervous system and bring around restorative change. A special interest of hers is to use MNRI Techniques to help people recover from traumatic experiences--she loves the powerful moments when clients are able to move out of trauma responses towards health and healing! Her compassion and kindness are evident in all her interactions.

When Jane is not relieving pain at Galaxy, you can find her with friends and family, taking long walks, camping or enjoying shows on stage or screen.

Alexis Chargo, MOT, OTRL

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Alexis received her Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology from Michigan State University, and Master of Occupational Therapy degree from Wayne State University. She is a current doctoral student at Wayne State University working towards earning a

PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience. She aims to integrate her knowledge of and clinical expertise in occupational therapy with the field of cognitive neuroscience through interdisciplinary and translational research, where this unique intersection can be used to transcend current practices and knowledge of age-related cognitive decline and neurological impairments. Working at Galaxy allows Alexis to live her best life by always challenging and pushing her to be the best version of herself, so that she can continue to pursue the goals she has set for herself, allowing her to contribute in the most meaningful way to the lives of others, which is where she finds the most joy.

 

When Alexis isn’t working, you will find her spending time outdoors, especially during the fall season, traveling, cooking, snuggling in on the couch during the weekends to watch football with her husband, and spending time with her two adventurous pups, Dawson and Gunnar.

Zakiya Niesen, MOT, OTRL

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Zakiya is a passionate and dedicated occupational therapist who is committed to helping individuals of all ages live their lives to the fullest. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Occupational Therapy from Eastern Michigan University. 

Zakiya's path to becoming an occupational therapist started when she was a child - she comes from a family of healthcare practitioners. Through the process of elimination, she ended up with the best option: OT! As an occupational therapist, Zakiya has worked with patients with various acute and chronic conditions, including neurological and orthopedic disorders, developmental delays, and mental health issues. She has experience in conducting assessments, developing treatment plans, and implementing interventions to help patients achieve their goals.

In her free time, Zakiya enjoys watching anime, reading comics, and manga, eating at new restaurants (Brunch is life!), taking community courses, practicing yoga and mindfulness, and is also currently learning how to crochet and play the ukulele.

Emily Williamson, MOT, OTRL

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Emily graduated with a Masters Degree in Occupational Therapy from Wayne State University in 2021. She has prior experience working in Adult Acute Care and Pediatric Inpatient Rehabilitation settings. In alignment with Galaxy’s core value of “Moving Forward & Giving Back”, Emily has loved volunteering her time especially at a therapeutic horseback riding program promoting the physical, emotional, and cognitive abilities of adults and children alike.

Emily is passionate about helping her clients at Galaxy cling to joy as their strength, know their authentic worth, and recognize the wonderful purpose ahead for them. She strives to make every person feel understood, respected, and supported through any life circumstance. She seeks to grow alongside her clients each day.

Outside of Galaxy, Emily’s favorite occupations include finding treasures at antique stores, journaling on her typewriter, reading, crafting, and spending quality time with loved ones (& pup, Penny).

PHYSICAL THERAPISTS

Shelly Roller MPT, CFPS

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Shelly is the founding member of the Galaxy Physical Therapy Department and has been transforming lives with the Galaxy team since we opened our clinic doors in 2017. Her passion, skill, and love for helping people helped Galaxy to become the company that it is today! Shelly has a Bachelor of Science in Movement Science, a Bachelor of Exercise Science, and a Masters in Physical Therapy from the University of Michigan and she continuously tries to learn the newest therapy techniques so that she can offer cutting-edge treatments for all of her clients. It is important to Shelly to listen to each person’s goals and needs to figure out the best way to help them to achieve their goals. She specializes in vestibular rehabilitation including cervicogenic dizziness, concussion rehabilitation, fall prevention specialist, stroke rehab, and is a PoNS trainer for clients with MS that have gait difficulties.

 

When Shelly isn’t working, you will find her spending time with her family, pets, and friends, exercising, and volunteering for her kids’ events!

Amanda Kelch, PT, DPT, MHS, NCS

Amanda Kelch, PT, DPT, MHS, NCS

Amanda’s passion for empowering others to move their best led her to become a physical therapist. She received her Doctorate of Physical Therapy from Grand Valley State University in 2017. Following her graduation, she was eager to further develop her skills and expertise in neurological rehabilitation so she completed a Neurological Physical Therapy Residency program.

Amanda is a Board Certified Clinical Specialist in Neurological Physical Therapy and has worked in both inpatient and outpatient neurological rehab and outpatient vestibular rehab settings. She is an LSVT BIG certified clinician and enjoys assisting individuals with Parkinson’s Disease move BIG. She is passionate about merging evidence based practice and meaningful client centered goals to enhance the functional outcomes of her clients and help them live their best lives.

Amanda is thrilled to be part of team Galaxy and grateful to have the opportunity to work with such a talented and caring team of professionals that share her passion and to help her clients achieve their goals. Her hobbies are hiking, traveling, getting outdoors, and spending time with family and friends.

Rachelle Borowitz, PT

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Rachelle Borowitz is a dedicated and highly skilled physical therapist who brings expertise in craniosacral therapy and myofascial release to her practice. Through her compassionate care, she empowers her patients to take control of their pain and achieve optimal health and well-being. She recognizes that every individual's pain experience is unique, and she tailors her treatment plans to meet the specific needs and goals of each patient. With a keen eye for detail, she thoroughly assesses her patients' conditions, identifying the root causes of their pain and developing personalized treatment strategies.

Outside of work Rachelle can be found in her garden caring for her dahlias or spending time with her family and her cats.

DJ Anderson, LMT, PTA

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DJ is a talented, kind, and compassionate clinician who is trained as a massage therapist and physical therapy assistant with over 20 years of continuing education and clinical experience. DJ always listens to clients first to understand their needs and then uses his training and experience to assess each client's needs for a very personalized experience. 

DJ specializes in alleviating acute/chronic muscular issues, soft tissue discomfort, and pain such as sciatica-lower back pain, neck/shoulder impingement/pain, frozen shoulder, golfer/tennis elbow, hip discomfort/pain, plantar fasciitis, and migraines. DJ uses myofascial release,  acupressure, trigger point release, active release, mobilization, compression, and effleurage along with manual stretching, ice packs, and or heat customizing each session to the client's needs. In each session, DJ will provide education on preventative exercises, stretches, and posture/ergonomics to prevent future pain.

Education:  Graduate of the Ann Arbor Institution of Massage Therapy and an Associate's degree from Washtenaw Community College in Applied Science: Physical Therapist Assistant.  

Interests: Spending time with his son and family,  camping, basketball, swimming, movies, road trips, watching football, and concerts.  

Social Work

Megan Berry, LLMSW

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If you’ve never needed a social worker before, you may not know about the plethora of experiences that they bring to the job, and the various tools they have in their belt.  We know exactly how talented they are--that’s why we are so excited to bring Megan on to our team!

Megan has both a bachelor’s and a master’s in social work (Huntington and Eastern Michigan Universities, respectively) and experience in programs from the Agency on Aging to Meals on Wheels. She is an amazing therapist who connects easily with everyone, making her sessions a safe therapeutic environment. She is trained in EMDR and CBT therapy. She specializes in TBI, PTSD, anxiety, depression, and chronic conditions.

We are so happy to be able to offer assistance emotionally and psychologically alongside the physical and cognitive challenges clients face, to propel them forward in their recovery!

SPEECH THERAPISTS

ANNIE LAURIA, MA, CCC-SLP

Annie Lauria

Annie Lauria, MA, CCC-SLP is a speech-language pathologist with two decades of experience serving adults with acquired speech, language, and cognitive disorders.

Since earning her Master’s Degree in Speech Pathology from the University of Iowa in 1998, Annie has worked in a variety of settings including private practice, hospitals, skilled nursing, and university clinics. Annie worked as a senior speech pathologist at the University of Michigan Aphasia Program for six years before moving to Missoula, MT to supervise graduate student clinicians and teach at the University of Montana.

Annie was also the founding director of the Big Sky Aphasia Program, the only intensive, comprehensive aphasia program in the mountain west. A native of Michigan, she is pleased to be back in her home state working with clients and their families to improve quality of life and participation. Annie is passionate about helping her clients focus on building and using residual skills to meet individualized, meaningful goals.

SUE TUCKER, MA, CCC-SLP

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Sue has worked as a speech-language pathologist for nearly 30 years serving adults with neurogenic communication disorders throughout her career. After graduating with her Master’s degree from Eastern Michigan University she accepted a position at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital working for 6 years on the Inpatient Rehabilitation Unit before transferring to St. Joseph Mercy Livingston Hospital where she worked as the sole SLP covering the inpatient and outpatient needs for the community-based hospital. In 2007 she accepted a position at Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan - Novi Center where she treated a variety of adult patients, working closely with her colleagues to meet the needs of her patients. She has supervised graduate clinicians as a Clinical Educator at Eastern Michigan University’s Speech and Hearing Clinic as well as in her practice throughout her career and values these mentoring opportunities.

In 2018 she joined the Galaxy team and is thrilled by the enthusiasm and effectiveness of the therapy provided here. She finds great satisfaction in collaborating with patients and their families to empower them to utilize their strengths to lead fulfilling lives following their

Sue has many interests! She enjoys cooking and trying new restaurants. She loves traveling with her husband of 30 years, especially to see their grown son who is a sports writer in Wisconsin. She is an avid reader and enjoys being outside, whether gardening, hiking, snow shoeing or just hanging out on her front porch!

Wellness Team

Barbara Branca, PhD, ABN, CMT, CZT

Barbara Branca, PhD, ABN, CMT, CZT

Dr. Branca is a retired neuropsychologist, certified mindfulness meditation instructor, certified Zentangle (meditative drawing) teacher, an artist and a poet.

Among her special interests include working with individuals who have sustained a traumatic brain injury, altered physical functionality, chronic pain and PTSD.  Her work is informed by a serious accident that she had some years ago, and she radiates empathy and compassion because of it.

Writing poetry and making jewelry are both part of her meditation practice--she feels that developing one’s creativity in harmony with spiritual understanding is essential for connecting to the Higher Self.  Dr. Branca is guided daily by the story of the Dalai Lama, who was asked by a seeker for the fastest way to enlightenment--The Dalai Lama looked at the seeker with gentleness and simply said “Be kind.”

ADMINISTRATIVE STAFF

Kimberly Paridaen, Director of Opperations and Compliance

Kimberly Paridaen

For 20 years, Kimberly led top sales teams, elevated the customer service experience and improved in-store processes in the retail industry and had varied rising roles in management until life interfered and a family member needed a caregiver.  This shift in focus showed Kimberly the importance of advocating for other people’s needs, and led her to pursue a career in the healthcare industry. Galaxy is so lucky (and insurance companies are so UNLUCKY) to have Kimberly’s tenacity and experience on our side!

Kimberly is passionate about giving a great, smooth experience to our new clients, and truly enjoys talking to each one about how we can help them to live their best lives. When Kimberly is not at work, she enjoys traveling, reading and spending time with her nephews and niece in Mishawaka, IN.  Since moving to Michigan, she’s discovered a love of kayaking and hopes to make it a new hobby!

Candice Cox, Office Manager

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Candice joined Galaxy in March 2024 and brings more than 25 years of experience building teams and leading transformations in multiple industries. She holds a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology and a B.S. in Materials Science Engineering - both are from the University of Michigan. 

 

Candice is the smiling face of Galaxy and is living her personal mission to make a positive impact one day at a time. She welcomes Galaxy clients, manages therapist schedules, processes client copays, coordinates office shenanigans, and leads special projects. There is no task that she won’t take on to help our clients, staff, and business!

 

In her time away from Galaxy, Candice loves to travel with her husband, encourage her three grown children, host gatherings for family and friends, spend time working (and lounging) outside, play with her three large dogs, create custom designs and items (as the founder of her own LLC), and enjoy spontaneous moments that elicit joy!