About Can Do Kids, Inc.
Can Do Kids, Inc. is a private, pediatric multi-disciplinary outpatient clinic located in Culver City, California. Can Do Kids has been providing individual services to children since 1981. We offer coordination of care for Physical , Occupational and Speech Therapy for children birth to 21 years of age. Our 6,000 square foot clinic includes several sensori-motor gyms with wall-to-wall custom matted flooring. The two largest areas offer a wide variety of gross motor opportunities including the highest quality suspension equipment used in the treatment of Sensory Processing Dysfunction. The two largest gym areas offer a customized observation deck with one way mirrors. In addition, we have many smaller gym areas that offer a variety of sensorimotor experiences. We have two individual speech and language treatment rooms that offer individual observation decks allowing parents/caregivers the ability to observe treatment.
Our fine motor rooms offer children the opportunity to work on fine motor and art activities. We also have a kitchen for working on feeding issues in a naturalistic setting. In addition, we have a unique area that offers a highly intricate design of lycra hammocks installation to work on motor planning that no child can resist!
Dr. Lori Annes, PhD., PT
Lori Annes, Ph.D., PT attended Northwestern University Medical School Program in Physical Therapy and has been practicing Pediatric Physical Therapy since 1978. During her very first year after graduation she attended the Neurodevelopmental Treatment Approach (two months) and set the foundation for decades of clinical involvement with children with Cerebral Palsy and other neuromuscular disorders. Lori became quite intrigued with oral motor feeding challenges for the child with motor based difficulties. She worked closely with Dr. Suzanne Evans Morris who was the first speech language pathologist to identify the milestones of early motor development. Lori worked with Suzanne’s collaborative approval to build a similar understanding of milestones for the child with breastfeeding as their primary source of nutrition. She became a certified Lactation Consultant the very first time the course was offered at UCLA and then became a faculty member of this training program in LA and throughout the country for many years. Lori has worked extensively with children with sensory based feeding challenges and she completed certification in the SOS Approach to Feeding at both the basic and advanced level of training with Kay Toomey. She completed the Advanced NDT training program for babies in 1983 with Lois Bly. During the first decade of her career she was also privileged to train with Dr. Jean Ayres who had developed the theory and treatment for Sensory Integration. Lori was one of a small group of physical therapists who Dr. Ayres allowed to attend this four month training which had been designed exclusively for occupational therapists.
Lori then took a few years off from her clinical practice to attend Northwestern University and achieve her doctoral degree in Communication Disorders with a specialization in Learning Disabilities. Dr. Annes’ dream was to own a multi-disciplinary clinic offering collaborative care with Physical, Occupational and Speech Therapy. She has been the owner of Can Do Kids for over twenty seven years. She worked for over 20 years with Don Buethorn, CPO of Cascade DAFO in the development of pediatric orthotics for children with low muscle tone when the prior emphasis had always been orthotics for children with increased tone and or spasticity and limb deformities. In 2012 she spent 8 months to earn her credential as a certified Yoga therapist and incorporates yoga into her pediatric physical therapy program including working with children with scoliosis. Over the past two years, Dr. Annes has attended the USC Chan Sensory Integration Certification program as well as attending the intensive Star Institute for Sensory Processing Disorder Level One mentorship program designed by Dr. Lucy Jane Miller. Integral to her clinical passions for the past 41 years, she has collaborated extensively with a wide range of physicians across many medical specialties to enable her and her staff to work with primary care physicians to seek in depth assessments for children whose original presenting challenges are often associated with other medical diagnoses. In addition, due to Dr. Annes’ commitment to the early identification of children with learning challenges, she has trained her staff and guided patients to undertake an assessment of potential or existing learning difficulties with neuropsychologists. In addition, Dr. Annes works arduously as an insurance advocate and educational advocate for all of the families at Can Do Kids. She has been married for 33 years and enjoys spending time with her husband and adult children including skiing, cycling and yoga.
Vince Hoffman, DPT
Vince received a General Science BS from Linfield College (McMinnville, Oregon) in 1998 and his Doctor of Physical Therapy from University of Southern California in 2001. He has completed numerous continuing education courses during his career including the 8 week Neurodevelopmental Treatment (NDT) certification in 2004. Vince began working at Can Do Kids in October of 2001 and is happy to have spent nearly his entire career at CDK. Vince is a native of Southern California and enjoys the opportunity to get outside (usually on a bike) all months of the year. Vince and his wife have a 11 year old daughter. Vince is an avid sports fan—Go Dodgers and Linfield Wildcats--and probably spends a little too much time cheering on his teams.
Kristy Gurol, DPT
Kristy Gurol, DPT received a Bachelor of Science Degree from California State University, Fullerton in 2006. She then received her Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Chapman University in 2009. Shortly after graduating, she started working at Can Do Kids and has been here ever since. She continues to take regular courses in NDT, Sensory Processing and other pediatric treatment techniques. She married her husband Goker in October of 2014 and welcomed her first son Ender in May 2016. Kristy enjoys traveling and having adventures with her family.
Clarisa Mijares, OTR/L
Clarisa graduated from University of Southern California Occupational Therapy program in 1998 and has since practiced as a pediatric based occupational therapist in the Los Angeles area. Working with infants to school age children in community-based, clinical and school-based settings, has been her passion. Clarisa maintains her knowledge base and skills with continuing education in USC's Chan Sensory Integration Certification Program, basic Neuro-Developmental Treatment, Sequential Oral Sensory (SOS) Approach to Feeding, Handwriting Without Tears, and ALERT Program. In her spare time, Clarisa enjoys spending time with her three children, husband and extended family. She loves to read, travel, watch movies, and Trojan football.
Melissa Epstein, OTR/L
Melissa received her Bachelor's of Business Administration Degree from George Washington University in 2002. She earned her Masters Degree in Occupational Therapy at University of Southern California in 2008. Prior to joining the Can Do Kids family in 2014, Melissa worked in school, clinic and home based occupational therapy settings, honing her evaluation skills and therapeutic methods. Melissa is certified in Sensory Integration and has completed several continuing education courses focused on , SOS, and the ALERT program. A lifelong animal lover, Melissa now shares her favorite rescue dog, Pepper, with the staff and clients at CDK. A fixture in the office since puppyhood, Pepper has also proved to be an effective motivator in the clinic, easing the transition into therapy for many of our children.
Amy Ikeda, OTR/L
Amy received her Bachelor's of Arts from California State University Northridge. She completed her Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy from West Coast University, where she graduated with Summa Cum Laude honors. She has training in evaluation and treatment of children with praxis (motor planning challenges), physical agent modalities, Neurodevelopmental Treatment (NDT), Sequential Oral Sensory Approach to Feeding (SOS)and Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD).In addition to her clinical work, Amy also has been trained and worked as an Applied Behavioral Analyst therapist with children diagnosed with Autism Disorder in home and school based therapies. During leisure time, Amy enjoys playing volleyball, going to the beach, visiting Disneyland and traveling with her daughter.
Emily Patton, OTR/L
Emily received her Bachelor's of Science in Child Development with a minor in Psychology from California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo in 2014. In 2017 she received her Master's in Occupational Therapy at Washington University in St. Louis where she researched how virtual reality gaming systems could facilitate ADL learning for children with Autism. Emily completed the intensive Star Institute for Sensory Processing Disorder Level One mentorship program designed by Dr. Lucy Jane Miller as well as the Sequential Oral Sensory (SOS) approach to feeding with Kay Toomey, PhD. She has also participated in several continuing education courses including a three day intensive Neurodevelopmental Treatment (NDT) coursework. In her free time, she enjoys baking sweets and creating ceramics on the wheel.
Caitlin Robins, CCC-SLP
Caitlin received her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology specializing in early childhood development from Purchase College in 2010 and her Master’s of Science in communication disorders from Adelphi University in 2015. She has completed numerous continuing education courses during her career including Prompt level 1 training and in the Social Thinking curriculum, as well as courses designated for the specific areas of Autism, Childhood Apraxia, ethics, language development, pragmatics and speech acquisition. She has worked with a variety of child populations including those with Autism Spectrum Disorder, motor disorders, Sensory Processing Disorder, Down Syndrome and other genetic and chromosomal mutations, as well as feeding difficulties. Caitlin worked as a traveling home-therapist for children in early intervention prior to starting at Can Do Kids in January of 2018. Caitlin was born and raised in Long Island, New York but is thrilled to be in sunny California.
Alex Gersh, CCC-SLP
Alex is an ASHA-certified speech language pathologist who received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern California and his master’s degree in Communication Disorders from the University of Colorado Boulder. Alex trained in a variety of settings including at the Temple Grandin School and Children’s National Medical Center. Since receiving his degree in 2014, Alex has been working with children ages 0-21 in private clinic settings in the LA area. He specializes in early intervention, language disorders, social pragmatics, fluency disorders, and articulation disorders. Alex has experience working with a wide variety of populations including Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy and Autism Spectrum Disorder. In his free time, Alex enjoys playing board games and hiking.