November News

With some warm and sunny weather in Chicagoland (rare this fall!) the Milestones staff enjoyed some wonderful Thanksgiving moments with their families. High on our collective list of things for which to give thanks is the gratitude we feel in being able to serve our families at Milestones. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to serve you; thank you for trusting us to partner with you in meeting the needs of your amazing children. Here’s what’s news around Milestones:

  • Several members of the Milestones team recently attended the local event affiliated with the “Campaign to Heal Childhood Trauma” presented and supported by numerous organizations involved with serving children and their families. The purpose of this five-city tour is to raise awareness of how childhood trauma impacts the development of 1 in 4 children in the U.S. and how these often-overlooked experiences can adversely impact children’s development and their physical and emotional health. November is National Adoption Month, an important time to remember that adoptive children and those in foster care are at significant risk for developmental trauma. All proceeds from this campaign go to three non-profit organizations who serve this population. 
  • A big Milestones welcome to Candace Adeszko, MOT, OTR/L. Candace brings with her several years of experience working with children in various settings and has a strong background working with children with sensory challenges. She will be available to work with families in the after-school hours.
  • Team member Kelly Komperda, DPT, recently enjoyed fun and sunshine at Disney World with her husband Steve!
  • Remember to register for the new series of social skills groups starting in January. Go to our blog page to read a Q&A on social skills groups with Milestones Lead Therapist Rebecca Doyle, LCSW. There, you also can access the flyers for both our preschool-kindergarten and our elementary grade sessions that run January 15/16 through March 5/6.

October News

We have had fun at Milestones as Halloween approaches. Our caring therapists and staff (above) displayed their true colors, decked out in Care Bear-inspired outfits for Halloween on Monday and Tuesday before the big day.

  • Clinical Director Janet Puderbaugh, MS, OTR/L, and Lead Therapist Jessica Vickery, MS, OTR/L, attended the Star Institute for Sensory Processing Disorders 20th Annual International Symposium: “Growth in Research and Strategies for Sensory Processing Disorders” in Denver this month. They enjoyed networking with other professionals and attending informative sessions pertaining to the latest research and treatment strategies for SPD. 
  • Kelly Shaw, MS, CCC-SLP, and Lead Therapist Ashley Valosek, MS, OTR/L, attended a course titled “Zones of Regulation – Strategies to Teach Behavior & Emotional Control, Social Skills & Executive Functioning Skills in Students.” Be sure to ask them about the “zones” and what that might mean for your child!
  • Team member Kelly Komperda, DPT, attended a course titled “Evidence-Based Strategies for Infant Positioning and Handling: Using Tummy Time to Influence Motor, Vision and Language Development.”
  • Lead Therapist Rebecca Doyle, LCSW, attended and represented Milestones at the Illinois Association for Infant Mental Health’s annual conference titled “The Neurorelational Framework: Translating Brain Science into Clinical Practice.” Many thanks to Rebecca for representing Milestones at this important event and for bringing back valuable information to the other team members.
  • Team member Megan Szarzynski, MOT, OTR/L, recently attended a two-day course with the Learning Without Tears™ organization for both the “Get Set for School® Readiness & Writing Workshop” and the “Handwriting Without Tears® K-5 Handwriting Workshop.”
  • The Milestones team has also been learning more about vision development and the importance of vision in successful school performance and recently enjoyed inservice presentations from Dr. David Maze of the West Suburban Family Vision and Therapy Center and from Dr. Monika Spokas of the Clarendon Vision Development Center. A big thank you to both of these professionals for their informative presentations!
  • We are very pleased to announce that team member Brittany Wilkie, LCSW, has joined the team on a full-time basis in order to assist with helping families new to Milestones navigate the intake and scheduling process. 
  • The fall session of our social skills group wrapped up this month. Five children had the opportunity to participate in our BFF Club led by Rebecca Doyle, LCSW, and Roopleen Ria, OTR/L, which teaches important skills about relating and being a good friend to others. Registration for our winter group is now open. Call us at 630-792-1800.
  • We have enjoyed hosting student Kara Koestner, OTS, for the past several weeks under the supervision of Lead Therapist Ashley Valosek, MS, OTR/L. Time has flown by and Kara has just a few weeks left with us; we will be sad to see her go but have loved playing a role in her education and are excited to see her develop in her professional career!
  • We had good response to the free-screening emails and Facebook posts that were seen this month. We do a special push for screening in the fall because the start of preschool can bring latent problems in a young child’s development to the forefront. But remember, we offer free screenings all year. Contact us any time you have questions about whether a child is meeting their developmental milestones. Early intervention matters.

September News

A big thank you to our Milestones team as we gear up for an active fall, not just at our lively therapy center where we see over 240 children per year, but in the communities around Downers Grove, Illinois, which Milestones – For Kids’ Success calls home.

  • Administrative Director Gretchen Manske recently hosted a “Thank You” indoor-picnic-themed luncheon for the Milestones team as a way to reward everyone’s efforts to keep our therapy center looking clean and tidy. Thanks, team!
  • Clinical Director Janet Puderbaugh, MS, OTR/L, explored the countries of Belgium and the Netherlands this month, touring through multiple cities and seeking out windmills and cheeses. Renewal through relaxing things like vacation travel is important for everyone! Parents, if you missed our August blog on “5 Ideas for Self-Care” why not check it out right now. Maybe you can’t get away from it all, but there are things you can do right at home.
  • Nine children made new friends and grew in their ability to successfully relate to each other and new acquaintances during our two social skills groups that wrapped up in August. These groups were led by Rebekah Doyle, LCSW, and Roopleen Rai, OTR/L (4-6 year olds) and Angela Frontera, MA, CCC-SLP, (7-9 year olds). Another group of five 4-6 year olds started in September. Inquire any time this fall if you have an interest in groups potentially starting in January. Call us at 630-792-1800.
  • Free screenings for preschoolers are being arranged now as teachers move past the first weeks of a child’s new school year and suspect that progress in certain developmental milestones merits a closer look. Preschools can arrange for a simple, 30-minute free screening to take place right in the classroom (includes therapist observation and a conversation with the teacher). Parents who have similar concerns can initiate a free screening for children under age 5 at our therapy center in Downers Grove, Illinois. If you are a teacher or parent with questions, review our developmental milestones information guides and then give us a call, 630-792-1800.
  • Milestones’ therapists are starting to schedule presentations for the 2017-2018 school year in the Downers Grove, Illinois, area for teachers, parent groups, Moms’ gatherings or other supportive groups on red flags in children’s developmental milestones. If your group would like to learn more about development in children and early warning signs, call us today at 630-792-1800.

August News


We keep growing here at milestones, both in family size and through professional development! We are proud to be celebrating 15 years in business, serving children and families all over the Western suburbs. Check out what’s new here at Milestones as we close out summer!

  • Congratulations and much happiness to team member Shefalie Patel, MA, CCC-SLP, as she and husband Rishi welcome their daughter to the family. Jaina Shreya Patel was born on August 11 weighing 6 pounds, 15 ounces and measuring 20 inches. We are so excited for the Patel family and look forward to meeting little Jaina!
  • Administrative Director Gretchen Manske recently attended a course titled “The Price We Pay for Caring: Stress and Anxiety Management for Social Workers, Teachers, and Early Interventionists.” During the presentation, she had the opportunity to explore options for the Milestones team to manage stress while continuing to coach those we serve.
  • Lead Therapist Rebecca Doyle, LCSW. has been educating the Milestones team on Trauma-Informed Care in her inservice presentations titled “Trauma and the Brain” this month. Having trained with Bessel van der Kolk, MD, an internationally recognized leader in the field of psychological trauma, Rebecca is our in-house expert on this important work.
  • We are taking registrations for our fall offerings of our social skills groups. The fall session of our BFF Clubs will run for eight consecutive weeks starting the week of September 4th. We have group offerings for children ages 4 – 6 years and for ages 7 – 9 years. Our group participants always have fun while learning important social skills!
  • The transition to fall schedules begins the week of August 21st. Summer has flown by and we are prepared for fall!
  • A big Milestones THANK YOU to Mary Juda,MS, OTR/L, for helping out over the summer months. We enjoyed having Mary with us and are delighted that she will be staying on to help with the after school hours!
  • Congratulations also to team member Brittney Wierbicki, LCSW, on her recent marriage! After the nuptials Brittany and new husband Jeff had an opportunity to relax and enjoy the tropics in Hawaii.
  • Welcome back to Lead Therapist Jessica Vickery, MS, OTR/L, as she returns to work after her maternity leave!
  • Milestones team members will celebrate the 15 year anniversary of Milestones this month! Clinical Director Janet Puderbaugh, MS, OTR/L, will host the team at her home for an evening of games, food, and drink.
  • Lead Therapist Ashley Valosek, MS, OTR/L, will have a much earned vacation and enjoy sun and beaches in Bermuda with husband Jon this month.

July News

We are multiplying around here! We have a new additions in both family members and staff this summer and couldn’t be more thrilled about it. Read on to learn more!

  • In her ongoing efforts toward continued professional growth, team member Krista Shutvet, MOT, OTR/L, recently attended courses entitled “Get Set for School Readiness & Writing Workshop” and “Handwriting Without Tears K – 5 Handwriting Workshop.”

  • A big Milestones welcome to new team member Brittany Wierbicki, LCSW. We are so excited to have her join our team and our efforts to continue to support families through our social work services!

  • A big welcome also to team member Kelly Shaw, MS, CCC-SLP. Kelly brings with her many years of experience working with children and their families and we are excited to have her join our team. She will be assuming the caseload for team member Shefalie Patel, MA, CCC-SLP, as Shefalie prepares to go on maternity leave

  • Congratulations and much joy for team member Jessica Vickery, MS, OTR/L, and her husband, Matt, on the birth of their son. Ty Douglas Skupien made his debut on July 5th at 10:56 am weighing 8 pounds, 10 ounces and measuring 21 inches!! We are so thrilled for Jessica and Matt and can’t wait to meet little Ty. 

  • Team member Roopleen Rai, OTR/L,  took an extended vacation over the month of July, traveling to Europe to visit numerous cities. We look forward to hearing all about her adventures!


Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapy helps children develop the skills to be successful during play, socialization, activities of daily living, and learning experiences. Learn More

Physical Therapy

Physical therapy helps children gain critical skills related to independent mobility and gross motor functioning. Learn More

Speech / Language Therapy

Speech/language therapy helps children develop the skills to effectively interact and communicate with the world around them. Learn More

Social Work Services

We invite any of our families to meet with our social workers if they feel they could benefit from support or counseling. Social work services are a great resource to strengthen families and children. Learn More

Neurofeedback Therapy

Neurofeedback is a type of brain training therapy that has proven to be a very successful intervention for children (and adults) with a variety of symptoms and disorders. Learn More

Social Skills Groups

Social Skills Groups help children build relationships with peers and develop important social pragmatic skills. Learn More

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