Meet Our Staff


The Seed Program has an experienced and enthusiastic team to support your child and family. We have seven Master's Level Clinicians at Seed, including Licensed and Board Certified Behavior Analysts (LBA, BCBA), Licensed Clinical Social Workers (LCSW), and Registered Behavior Technicians (RBT).


Julie DeMarco Zimmerman

The Seed Program Clinical Director

Licensed and Board Certified Behavior Analyst (LBA, BCBA)

Julie DeMarco-Zimmerman is a Licensed and Board Certified Behavior Analyst (LBA, BCBA) and is the Clinical Director and Founder of The Seed Program. Julie has worked in the field of ABA Therapy for over 20 years, providing support for children with special needs since 1995. She is a founding member of the Autism Society of the Mid-South (now ARMS). In 2002, she started Sibshops, a group for siblings of children with disabilities. Julie obtained her Masters Degree in Educational Psychology and Research from The University of Memphis and received further training at The New England Center for Children in Boston. After living in the Northeast, Julie returned to Memphis to marry her husband and work as a Regional Behavior Specialist for Team Evaluation Center. Eventually, Julie began her own private practice as a BCBA, where she worked with families, consulted with public and private schools and gave professional presentations. Julie's professional interests include social skills training and advocacy. She desires to create an inclusive community for families of children with exceptional needs.

Allison Cave

Occupational Therapist (OT)

Allison was born and raised in Memphis, TN. She graduated in 2017 from Mississippi State University with a degree in Clinical Exercise Physiology. She then graduated from The University of Tennessee Health Science Center in 2020 with a Masters degree in Occupational Therapy (OT). She is excited to start out her OT career at the Seed Program and hopes to help every child she works with to gain as much independence as possible. During her free time, Allison enjoys baking, being outside, reading, and spending time with her husband, Jon Luke, and dog, Bailey.

Emily Hice

Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW)

Licensed and Board Certified Behavior Analyst (LBA, BCBA)

Emily Hice  is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst and a Licensed Master Social Worker. Since 2013 she has worked at homes and in schools with children who struggle with mental health and/or challenging behavior. A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, Emily attended the University of Alabama for her undergraduate degree and has a Masters degree in Instruction and Curriculum Leadership with an emphasis in Applied Behavior Analysis and a Masters degree in Social Work from the University of Memphis. When Emily is not at work, you can find her on the tennis court or hanging out at the lake with her husband and pup, Scout. 

Adelaide Burrow

Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA)

Adelaide was born and raised in Memphis. She has always loved working with children and has a special passion for children with special needs. She received her undergraduate degree in Early Childhood Education. her Masters in Special Education with an emphasis on Autism from UT Austin.  Adelaide loves helping children and families reach their goals, and she is currently celebrating reaching one of her major goals of becoming a BCBA! When she is not busy being a Champion BCBA, Adelaide enjoys cooking, reading, and spending time with family and friends. 

Brooklyn Henson

Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA)

Brooklyn, a Memphis native, comes to us with 4 years of experience as a BCBA. She received her undergraduate degree in Psychology and her Masters Degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from the University of Memphis. Prior to working at SEED, she worked with children with Autism and developmental delays at Harwood Center. In her spare time she enjoys outdoor activities such as mountain biking, hiking, and riding side-by-sides with her new husband. Welcome, Brooklyn!

Hillary Thornton

Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA)

Hillary is a Tipton County native who is currently residing in Memphis. She loves applied behavior analysis and the significant changes it brings to so many peoples' lives. Her current interests include social skills and language development. 2017 was a big year for Hillary, as it was the year she received both her master's degree and her BCBA certification! Since becoming certified, she has been practicing as a BCBA at different locations but has really found a home in the SEED Program. 

When Hillary is not working, she enjoys spending time with her boyfriend and young son. Her hobbies include gardening, raising chickens, and (attempting to) train her dog. 

Mary Hattie McAlister

Registered Behavior Technician

Mary Hattie McAlister is a native of Memphis, TN. She attended college at Mississippi State University for two years where she studied Special Education before transferring home to the University of Memphis where she completed her Bachelors degree in Youth Services with a concentration in Integrative Studies. She has been working with children with special needs for over 8 years and has been with The Seed Program since 2014. Mary Hattie loves to make learning fun and interactive everyday! In her free time , she enjoys spending time with family, friends and her golden retriever Ripley. Some of Mary Hattie's favorite things are: spending time outside, visiting Shelby Farms, and college football.

Diane DeBuse

Masters in Early Childhood Special Education (M.A.Ed.)

Certified SMILA Tutor

Diane DeBuse is an experienced Early Childhood Educator who has been working with children since high school. She has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology (1983) and a Master’s and Teaching License in Early Childhood Special Education (1998), both from the University of Memphis. Diane is also a SMILA tutor (Simultaneous Multi-sensory Institute of Language Arts) and teaches a multi-sensory reading approach. Diane has been with The Seed Program for several years and prior to Seed, taught at the Harwood Center for 8 years, where she assisted children with various disabilities. In 2008, she became an ABA therapist and began providing therapy to children within their home, school and community. Diane continues to offer after-school home-based tutoring for reading, spelling, and writing difficulties. Diane loves watching children develop confidence in their abilities. She is the mother of two daughters and a grandmother (Nana) of three grandsons. 

Tori Cheek

Registered Behavior Technician

Tori, an Auburn Indiana ("Home of the classic cars") native, moved to Midtown in Spring of 2018 and has fallen in love with the area. The SEED Program helped Tori's transition period be extra sweet and peaceful.  She states, "I started working here when I first moved to Memphis so working here made me feel like I had a second home." When she is not working at SEED, Tori loves to play with her dogs (Mya and Maysie), bake cookies, and garden. 

Tori has been working in the field of ABA since Spring of 2017. She has a passion for working with early learners and she has a history of working with ages 6-13. She received her RBT in Spring of 2018 while working at an ABA center in Bloomington, Indiana.She is pursuing her Masters in Applied Behavior Analysis, with an Autism Certificate, and she plans to graduate from Ball State in  Spring of 2020. Following graduation, she will sit for the BCBA exam. 

Brooke McLillie

Registered Behavior Technician

Brooke was born and raised in Tipton County. She has been working with exceptional children since 2015 and enjoys every bit of it!  Brooke is a 2019 graduate of the University of Memphis. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Professional Studies with a focus in both Child Development and Family Studies and Applied Behavior Analysis. She successfully passed her RBT test in Fall of 2019. She plans to begin a masters program in ABA in January of 2020. In her spare time, Brooke enjoys spending time with her fiancé, playing with her dogs Timber and Memphis, camping, hunting, and cleaning her house! 

Chelsea Sims

Registered Behavior Technician

Chelsea received her bachelors degree in Communicative Sciences and Disorders from Harding University in May of 2014. She acquired her Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) certification in November 2019, while working at the SEED Program. Chelsea has a passion for working with early learners. She came to SEED "hoping to help kids be the best they can be". When she is not working, Chelsea enjoys reading as much as she can, trying new recipes, and organizing game nights with her friends. 

Katie Yeatman

Registered Behavior Technician

Katie was new to Memphis when she started at SEED.  A Fayetteville, Arkansas native, she graduated from the University of Arkansas (She exclaims, "woo pig!") with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. Katie is a Registered Behavior Technician and is CALM Crisis Intervention certified. Her special interests in her profession include school readiness and social skills. Her special interests in her free time include yoga, the lake, and exploring new places with friends! We are so thankful Katie moved to Memphis!

Shelly Campbell

Special Education Teacher

Shelly Campbell is an experienced education specialist with a history of working in primary education. She is skilled in PK-8 Education, Speech-Language therapy, Special Education, and Educational Leadership. Shelly attended Delta State University for her undergraduate degree in Speech Language Pathology and the University of Memphis for her master’s degree in Master of Arts in Teaching focused in Comprehensive Special Education. When she is not working, she is spending time with her family. 

Yahaira Pita                                                       

Registered Behavior Technician

Yahaira Pita is a native Memphian who loves to work with special needs children utilizing ABA Therapy. She has been with the SEED Program since 2017. Yahaira has a few nicknames, including Ms. Pita, Ms. Ghaira and Ms. Haira. In her spare time, Yahaira enjoys watching movies & Netflix, her favorite movies include Wreck-it-Ralph and Lala Land. Yahaira loves Batman, Chocolate and Starbucks! She hopes to visit Italy, New York, and Majorca some day.

Ruthann Langdon

Registered Behavior Technician
Program Coordinator

Ruthann Langdon has been with the SEED Program since she and her husband moved to Memphis in January of 2016. Ruthann graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from a small liberal arts school in 2010, and worked for one year with adults at an ARC program in Massachusetts. After meeting and marring her wonderful husband, Ruthann moved to Connecticut and made the switch to working with kids. It didn't take long to fall in love with a new career! During her time at SEED, she has completed an array of crucial tasks, to include: behavioral therapy, supply purchases, and fileRuthann is currently working on a Master's in Special Education online through Penn State. In her free time, Ruthann enjoys watching baseball.

Adrienne Mitchell

Registered Behavior Technician

Adrienne calls Memphis home. She received her undergraduate degree in Psychology at UT Chattanooga. She has her RBT certification and she is very excited to further her education in ABA at the University of Memphis. She is currently pursuing her Masters, in hopes of being a BCBA one day! Adrienne is thankful for the opportunity to gain quality experience while providing quality service at SEED!

Kathryn Headley

Billing Specialist

Kathryn Headley, better known as Katie by friends and family, is a Billing Specialist with 9 years of experience in the behavioral health industry. Kathryn is originally from Broward County, Florida where she began her career in 2010 working for a third-party company contracted by behavioral health and substance abuse facilities across the United States.

In 2014 she joined an ABA and clinical psychology agency in Hollywood, Florida and since has been a dedicated advocate for families navigating through the processes of initial intake of services, authorizations, medical billing, and collections from insurance companies to ensure coverage of services for her clients. In 2016 Kathryn moved to Dallas, Texas where she continued her work assisting families accessing services for their children and family members on the autism spectrum and other behavioral needs. In order to expand her knowledge and skill set in the field, Kathryn has attended conferences such as the Association of Professional Behavior Analysts and the Autism Law Summit where she gained pertinent information and contacts in order to better serve those in the community.

Kathryn has recently relocated to Memphis, Tennessee, joining The SEED Program team eager to begin “serving exceptional families in the mid-south”. While in Memphis, Kathryn looks forward to working along side therapists, teachers, and caregivers while pursuing a degree in Psychology.

Lindsey Swafford

Registered Behavior Technician

Lindsey was born in Memphis and currently lives in Southaven, MS.  She has been working with children with developmental needs for several years, and has completed research work on intervention strategies.  She received her Bachelor’s in Psychology with a minor in Communication Sciences and Disorders from Ouachita Baptist University in May 2018 and is currently pursuing her Master’s in ABA at the University of Memphis.  She is currently working on her Registered Behavior Technician training.  Lindsey  looks forward to continuing to put all she is learning into action at SEED! When she is not at SEED, you can find Lindsey watching Gilmore Girls!

Carrie Cannon

Registered Behavior Technician

Carrie was born and raised in the Delta- Leland, Mississippi. She attended Mississippi State University, where she gained a degree in Psychology. Carrie's husband's job brought her to Memphis, and her love for children brought her to SEED. She credits her prior work experience at an ABA center in Texas, stating "..that's when I fell in love with it" (working with children with special needs). While at SEED, Carrie has gained her Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) certification and she  is constantly building on her skillset. During her free time, Carrie enjoys spending time with family. 

Meghan Witt

Registered Behavior Technician

Meghan was raised in Colorado, where she found her love for working with children. She began her studies at the University of Northern Colorado. Over the past ten years, Meghan has worked in the public school setting, serving students of all abilities. She worked for five years in Colorado before moving to Middle Tennessee. Most recently, Meghan worked with a team of special educators to develop a program for students with mental health issues and behavioral disorders in the public school setting. Meghan is passionate about helping students achieve success, both academically and behaviorally. In 2017-2018, Meghan was awarded Classified Employee of the Year for CMCSS school district in Clarksville, Tennessee. In 2018-2019, she was awarded Classified Employee of the Year for LSSD in Lebanon, Tennessee. Her family relocated to Memphis for her husband's job. The move to Memphis has opened up a new opportunity for Meghan to work alongside students and empower them as they learn and grow. She is currently working on completing her Registered Behavior Technician training. When she is not working, she enjoys spending time with her two young children. her husband, and her pup, Teddy. 

Emily Cooper

Behavior Technician

Emily is a Tipton County native who recently moved back to the area after graduating from The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in December 2019. Emily enjoyed her time in Chattanooga, where she gained her Bachelor's Degree in Exercise Science and Psychology. She has enjoyed working with children with special needs for many years! Emily is currently in the process of completing her Registered Behavior Technician training and plans to pursue her Master's in ABA beginning Fall of 2021. When Emily is away from SEED, she enjoys spending time exploring the outdoors with her fiancé and her pup, Nelli!

Brian Manburg

Registered Behavior Technician

Brian was born and raised in Oakland, California.  Following high school graduation, he was bound for the University of Oregon. While attaining his undergraduate degree in Psychology, Brian received a Minor in Special Education. He went on to gain a Masters in Education from Christian Brothers University. Brian  has served as an AmeriCorps Member with City Year, taught 4th and 5th grade in Memphis with Teach For America, and has managed school-wide elementary programming in elementary. He is currently earning a graduate certificate in ABA from the Florida Institute of Technology. In his spare time, Brian enjoys watching basketball and exploring new restaurants. 

Laken Chism

Registered Behavior Technician

Laken was born in Corinth, Mississippi and currently lives in Memphis, Tennessee. She graduated in 2018 with an undergraduate degree in Psychology from the University of Mississippi, and is currently in her last year of graduate school studying ABA at the University of Memphis. Laken has been working in the field of ABA for a little over two years, and loves watching kids learn and grow! In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with family and friends, going on road trips, and watching movies. 

Marissa Hampton

Behavior Technician

Marissa was born and raised in Memphis, TN. She obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a minor in Sociology at Louisiana State University in August 2019. Shortly after graduating, she moved back to Memphis and taught a kindergarten inclusion class for a year. She is currently in the process of completing her Registered Behavior Technician training and has enjoyed her time at SEED thus far! In Marissa’s spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, boyfriend, and pet turtle Ronnie!

Haley Winslow

Registered Behavior Technician

Haley is a native of Memphis, she has moved around a lot with her family but always finds herself back here in Memphis. She received her undergraduate degree in Psychology and is currently pursuing her Master’s in ABA at the University of Memphis. She has been working in the ABA field for almost 2 years. She loves working with children with special needs and getting to make learning fun in unique ways. In her spare time, Haley loves playing with her cats and hanging out with her friends and family. She can also be found constantly watching Grey’s Anatomy. 

Mae La Rocque

Registered Behavior Technician

Mae LaRocque is a native Memphian. Mae gained a special interest in ABA after having a family member diagnosed with autism.  She has been working as a Registered Behavior Technician for over a year.  Mae is a graphic artist with a heart for children.  She plans on completing her degree in graphic design online at Rocky Mountain College of Art.  Mae loves to use her natural creativity to help each child meet their goals. In her free time, Mae loves working on art projects, hanging out with her bearded dragon, Debbie, and rubbing the belly of her favorite dog, Django.  Some of her favorite things are spontaneous road trips, punny jokes, and reading books.  Her main goal in life is to pet every dog.

Sarah Pruett VanderSteeg

Behavior Coordinator

Sarah was born and raised in Memphis. She graduated in 2013 from Mississippi State University with a degree in Human Development and Family Studies/ Emphasis in Child Life. She completed an internship in Child Life at Huntsville Hospital for Women and Children before graduating and went on to pursue a certification in Child Life. Following graduation, she worked at LeBonheur Children's Hospital as a Certified Child Life Specialist in the NICU. Over the past several years, Sarah has pursued her passion for helping children with special needs, and she has a special heart for supporting staff, administration, and families in their critical work. 

During her free time, Sarah enjoys spending time with her husband, hanging out with her dog Louie, and swimming.

The Seed Program

6413 Quince Road

Memphis, TN 38119

(901) 690-5213

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