Our Mission Statement
It is our mission to provide our clients with the skills to enjoy an independent and fulfilling life imbued with meaningful relationships. We ensure that our interventions are as effective and relevant as possible by collaborating with the clients’ stakeholders, drawing from the latest research and applying the scientist-practitioner model. Additionally, the end-point of all interventions is a demonstration of the desired outcome with the relevant caregivers in the natural environment.
ABC, a developmental disability care in Tennessee, endeavors to help children and young adults alike overcome their daily challenges due to their health condition. We aim to provide individualized Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy for children and young adults with autism across the spectrum by using the latest research to inform therapy procedures and providing high-quality, ongoing training to our behavior therapists.
Intensive initial and ongoing training is provided for our RBTs to refine and maintain their skills. Additionally, RBTs earn a bonus hourly pay rate calculated monthly based on the quality of their performance. Supervising BCBAs provide the RBTs with weekly feedback using an observation checklist to help them prepare for a monthly video submission of their performance which is reviewed by the leadership team. This high-expectation, high-pressure environment is attractive only to those RBTs with a strong drive to learn to be the best therapist possible. RBTs receive additional support during our weekly clinical review meetings where they can ask more in-depth questions of BCBAs in a distraction-free environment and where they can role-play scenarios to sharpen their skills.
1. Collaboration is vital to our success! Your BA (Behavior Analyst) will work closely with parents, teachers and other caregivers to determine and prioritize behavior goals and effectiveness of your child’s behavior therapy. This will ensure that the Behavior Support Plan (BSP) takes into consideration:
- Unique differences of your child
- Parent values
- Family culture
- Practical constraints
2. Positive Reinforcement:
ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) Therapy sessions are designed to be fun, whether they are focused on skill acquisition (social language, or academic) or reducing problem behaviors. Play time with your BA and other positive reinforcers are used to keep your child motivated to work hard. For reducing problem behaviors, socially appropriate alternative behaviors will be taught that will allow your child to get their needs met or cope with difficult situations.
3. Whenever possible, natural reinforcement will be used to motivate behavior changes. When arbitrary reinforcement (e.g. candy) is used, a plan to systematically transition to natural reinforcement will be developed by your BA.
4. Evidence-Based. Advances in ABA Therapy are continually generated by ongoing research in autism and behavior. Your BA studies and evaluates newly published research to ensure that, if a new development would be therapeutically relevant to your child and his/her situation, it will be incorporated into your child’s BSP and therapy curriculum.
Meet The ABC Team
Our specialized team of healthcare professionals is dedicated to providing the intervention needed to better their patients’ condition. As such, we at Advanced Behavior Consultants make sure that the people we employ are qualified for the position. They have undergone extensive hiring process and they are carefully screened, trained and verified to ensure their individual capabilities.
Meet the members of our team.
Curtis J. Harris MS, BCBA, LBA | Director
Curtis has served as the Director of Advanced Behavior Consultants since 2011. In his 20 years of clinical experience, he has managed a variety of caseloads including all ages of children, adolescents, and adults with many different developmental and dual diagnoses, including autism. Curtis is extraordinarily enthusiastic about pursuing and conducting ongoing research in the practical application of behavior analysis to better help families effected by developmental disabilities. He strongly believes that every program he develops needs to meet the unique needs and constraints of the individual family with whom he works. He is driven by his belief that treatment that is data-based will continue to expand all providers’ ability to improve the meaningfulness of relationships and successful accomplishments of individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities. Curtis is collaborating with Clarksville community leaders to launch a nonprofit support organization to aid in social support and peer mentoring for parents with children with special needs. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degree from University of North Texas in behavior analysis. Curtis has been exclusively working in the Clarksville and Fort Campbell area since 2008 and values the strong military and community support in the area.
Rebecca Bautista, M.S., BCBA
Rebecca relocated to Clarksville from New York City in 2017. She graduated with her Master’s Degree in Psychology in 2018, and previously, summa cum laude with her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology with a minor in Anthropology from Queens College. Since she was 15, she has worked with children and young adults in special education from tutoring, community habilitation, job coaching, and as a recreational instructor for sports and swimming. She works enthusiastically and tenaciously for the exciting reward of seeing triumph on her clients’ faces when they master new skills! When Rebecca is not working, she enjoys spending time outdoors with her husband and daughter, or chilling at home with her cats.
M. Ryan Divine, M.S., BCBA
Ryan Divine is a Behavior Analyst who graduated with his master’s degree in psychology from Purdue University Global, and his bachelor’s degree in psychology from Austin Peay State University. A love of helping people and studying the biology and function of the brain drove him into the field of psychology, where he began working as a Registered Behavior Technician. Becoming an RBT ignited a passion for ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis Therapy) that will never go away, and he continues to read and research constantly. Ryan was born on Fort Campbell and raised in Clarksville as a military brat, who has a deep understanding of military life, stresses, and unpredictability. In his free time, Ryan likes to work on and race cars and play video games with his son and wife.
Amberley Heins, M.S., BCBA
Amberley Heins is originally from Upstate New York and has a long history of serving and teaching children of all ages. While earning her Adolescent Education degree she spent her summers working at a camp serving children and adults with developmental disabilities. This had a profound effect on her career goals. After moving to Fort Campbell, KY, she was introduced to the field of Applied Behavior Analysis and has worked to become a professional in the field. She completed her master’s degree in psychology and started practicing as a BCBA in 2019. She looks forward to using this knowledge and her personal familiarity with the stress of a being part of a military family to continue to serve this community and help foster growth and learning in the children she works with.
Kayla Wynn, M.S., BCBA
Kayla, a native Tennessean, started her career working with children on the autism spectrum after graduating from APSU cum laude with a degree in Psychology and a minor in theatre arts. Her classes in developmental psychology and child development inspired her toward a career using science and research while working with children. Now, as a BCBA, she is passionate about helping children of all ages learn skills they can use throughout their entire lives to build meaningful and fulfilling relationships. Kayla loves her hometown of Dover, TN where she lives with her husband and step daughter and living close to her family. In her free time, Kayla also enjoys reading and playing with her many cats.
Kristin Martin, RBT
Kristin loves working with young children, especially in an early intervention setting where their early progress can change the trajectory of a child’s future. As former military spouse and a mother, she is very familiar with the stresses of army life, and the challenges of setting up a close support system and meeting the needs of each child. She is enthusiastic and loving with each child she works with and finds each of their successes deeply fulfilling.
Molly Divine, B.S., RBT
Molly’s love for the outdoors, caring for the environment, and belief in the importance of food safety led her to a degree from APSU in Agriculture and participating in research at Cornell University. Her deep desire to help others, especially when it comes to others gaining their independence, led her to work with children with autism, and now she is pursuing her graduate education and working toward completing her training as a BCBA. She loves to see the joy on a child’s face as they learn new things and the excitement when meet their goals. Molly’s patient and understanding character endear her to the military families she works with and her silly, fun-loving side win over her clients from toddlers to middle schoolers! As a mom, Molly’s time is busy, and she enjoys playing and reading to her son and watching him grow!
Courtney Cobbler, B.A., RBT
While teaching in a self contained inclusion Special Education classroom in CMCSS school district, Courtney observed ABA Professionals working in her students and making vast improvements in their language and behavioral skills. It was these observations of the success of ABA interventions that led her to a career change to become an ABA Therapist herself. As a mom herself, Courtney brings compassion and connection to the families she works with.
Natalya Gutierrez, B.S., RBT
Natalya comes all the way from South Florida and misses the beach and warm winters. While earning her degree, she worked as a lifeguard and gave swim lessons to children with disabilities, which led her to Tennessee to seek training and the opportunity to work with children as an RBT. She’s loved the experience here with the kiddos so much that she plans to get her Master’s in ABA. She enjoys going to the gym, listening to live music in Nashville, and online shopping.
Jamie Etringer B.S., RBT
Jamie originally trained as a teacher, but has found her calling in the field of behavior analysis. She loves working one on one with children of all ability levels and especially the opportunity to understand the deeper behavioral principles that drive learning language and behavior changes. She plans to be a BCBA , and is pursuing her graduate education in Behavior Analysis and with eagerness of a deeply thoughtful person who can see the potential of improved lifelong outcomes for the families and children with whom she works.
H. Dakota Baswell B.S., RBT
Dakota, originally from south Alabama, relocated to Clarksville with her husband who is stationed at Ft. Campbell. She completed her degree in Rehabilitation and Disability Studies from Auburn University in 2018. She is passionate about early intervention and loves seeing meaningful behavior change occur during sessions. Dakota plans on attending graduate school for Applied Behavior Analysis later this year. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her three German shepherds, cooking, and running.
Eliza Putnam M.S.W., RBT
Eliza sought out additional training in ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis Therapy) as a Behavior Technician after working as a social worker with multiple clients and adolescents with a diagnosis of autism. She had the desire to bring more resources and the opportunity to help her future patients to achieve lasting and meaningful improvements in their relationships and quality of life. Her fun-loving approachability and sense of caring for meeting the needs of the whole individual make her a favorite with the families she supports including toddlers as well as older patients.
Tanisha Sanchez-Ogle B.S., RBT
Tanisha Sanchez Ogle was born and raised in Puerto Rico. Being fully bilingual, she enjoys working with children in bilingual homes. Educating and helping children with their development is her passion in life. She has her Bachelor’s degree in Speech Therapy and is a Registered Behavior Technician (RBT). Contributing positively to kids and family’s lives fills her up with joy and a sense of accomplishment. Being a military spouse helps her better understand the families she works with and how fast changes happen in a military family life. Learning is part of everybody’s life and loving to be a part of that journey for her patients makes her a great RBT.
Brittany Hicks, APSU | Psychology Intern
Brittany has recently joined the ABC team after learning about ABA Therapy in her Psychology studies at APSU. She is a mom of three rambunctious boys, and loves the opportunity to learn about how behavioral principles can be applied in everyday parenting roles and help improve the relationships of parents and families with children with developmental delays. She is a huge support to our clinical team, and will soon be joining them as an RBT herself.
Tackonia Smith | Billing and Office Manager
Tackonia lived most of her life in Northern Virginia, before eventually settling down in Clarksville, TN. As the daughter and spouse of retired marines, she keeps our office running ship-shape, and will fiercely advocate for families who are seeking medical services for their children. She went to school to become a Medical Billing Specialist and graduated at the top of her class. She enjoys spending time with her family, swimming, and road trips.
Anne-Marie Harris, Practice Manager
Anne-Marie works directly with parents who have recently received a diagnosis on the Autism Spectrum for their child to connect them to resources, both military and civilian and determine if Advanced Behavior Consultants is a good resource for their family. Her goal is facilitating a foundation of trust and candor between families in Clarksville and Fort Campbell and their ABA Therapy providers. As a mother, she strives to help advocate for the services that can help support and empower each mother and father of a child with special needs. She has a degree in Management Information Systems and spent 12 years in a Fortune 1000 company working with New Client Implementations as a Project Manager.
What is ABA?
Behavior Analysis is the scientific study of behavior. Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is the application of the principles of learning and motivation from Behavior Analysis and the procedures and technology derived from those principles, to the solution of problems of social significance. Many decades of research have validated treatments based on ABA.
The Report of the MADSEC Autism Task Force (2000) provides a succinct description, put together by an independent body of experts:
Over the past 40 years, several thousand published research studies have documented the effectiveness of ABA across a wide range of:
- populations (children and adults with mental illness, developmental disabilities and learning disorders including, but not limited to Autism Spectrum Disorders)
- interventionists (parents, teachers and staff)
- settings (schools, homes, institutions, group homes, hospitals and business offices) and
- behaviors (language; social, academic, leisure and functional life skills; aggression, selfinjury, oppositional and stereotyped behaviors)
Applied behavior analysis is the process of systematically applying interventions based upon the principles of learning theory to improve socially significant behaviors to a meaningful degree and to demonstrate that the interventions employed are responsible for the improvement in behavior (Baer, Wolf & Risley, 1968; Sulzer-Azaroff & Mayer, 1991).