Our Team

The UNT Kristin Farmer Autism Center staff is a family of dedicated, compassionate, and caring individuals, selected for their extensive knowledge and experience in autism, and their demonstrated success in a wide variety of professional areas.

Every staff member and employee strives to be a model of excellence in all we do, including our daily interactions with one another, the individuals and families we serve, and the many partners and collaborators who make up our multidisciplinary team. We maintain the highest levels of skills and competence in autism treatment, research, and training, in order to fulfill our vision and accomplish our mission goals and objectives.

We continuously demonstrate the Center's Core Values, and we pledge to make a positive long-term impact on the lives of our clients. We believe that by significantly improving the functional skills of individuals with autism, we not only enrich their lives, but also our lives and the lives of those in our shared community.

We truly consider all persons receiving services at the Center to be part of our extended family, and vow to conduct ourselves at all times in an atmosphere of utmost professionalism, courtesy, mutual respect, determination, and hope.

Please discover more about the UNT Autism Center team below.

State of the KFAC: 2018


Kristin Farmer

Kristin Farmer - Benefactor and Strategic Advisor

Ms. Farmer is the UNT Kristin Farmer Autism Center's benefactor.  She continues to be an active supporter of UNT and the University's many autism activities, including the center which proudly bears her name.

Kevin Callahan

Kevin Callahan, PhD, BCBA-D - Executive Director, Autism Center

Center director Kevin Callahan, Ph.D., served as a UNT faculty member in the educational psychology department’s special education program for 18 years before becoming the director of the UNT Kristin Farmer Autism Center.

Dr. Susan Nichols

Susan Nichols, PhD, BCBA-D - Director, Autism Center

"Susie" Nichols is one of the original executive team members at the Kristin Farmer Autism Center and has provided clinical leadership since the center opened in 2012. In addition to establishing clinical standards and managing all clinical staff, Dr. Nichols oversees all KFAC operations, writes grants and participates in research at the center.

 

Kristi Klusman

Kristi Klusman - Administrative Coordinator

Kristi Klusman joined the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in November 2014, where she serves as the Administrative Coordinator for the Center.  She is a member of the executive team and also leads the administrative staff, coordinates client intake, manages the KFAC building and provides budget support among other duties.

Melissa Bowen

Melissa Bowen, MA, BCBA - Assistant Director, Training

Melissa has over 7 years of experience serving children with autism in clinical settings. She received her bachelor's degree in Psychology from The University of Nebraska at Lincoln and her master's degree in Psychology (with an emphasis in Applied Behavior Analysis) from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.

Kristi Cortez

Kristi Cortez, MS, BCBA - Behavior Analyst

Kristi Cortez earned her Master's degree in Behavior Analysis at the University of North Texas. She is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst with over 10 years of experience working with children with autism. She is a certified special education teacher with seven years of experience in the classroom. Kristi joined the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in 2014.

Crysta Perkins

Crysta Perkins, MS, BCBA – Behavior Analyst

Crysta joined the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in May 2016. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of North Texas in 2015 and her Master’s degree in Behavior Analysis in 2018. Crysta is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst with over five years of experience working with children in educational, home and clinical settings.

Shannon Van Scoy

Shannon Van Scoy, MEd, BCBA - Behavior Analyst

Shannon joined the KFAC team in August 2017. She received her Bachelor's degree in Speech-Language Pathology/Audiology at the University of North Texas and her Master's degree in Special Education-Autism and Developmental Disabilities at the University of Texas at Austin. She is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst with over four years of experience working with children and adults with autism in clinical and home settings.

Miriam Koech

Miriam Koech, MA, BCBA - Behavior Analyst

Miriam Koech joined the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in May 2019 as a Behavior Analyst. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Applied Behavior Analysis at the University of Kansas and her Master’s degree in Applied Behavior Analysis at the University of South Florida. She has a varied background, with over eight years of experience working in centers in Kansas, Oklahoma and Florida, and most recently at the University of Missouri Thompson Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders.

Kimberlee Flatt

Kimberlee Flatt, PhD, BCBA, LPC - Adult Services Coordinator

Dr. Kimberlee Flatt is a Licensed Professional Counselor and a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. She has 20+ years of experience supporting individuals and families, impacted by autism, in both educational and clinical settings. She specializes in the treatment of behaviors associated with high-functioning autism including social skills and repetitive behaviors. Dr. Flatt coordinates the adult services at KFAC but is passionate about serving individuals of all ages on the autism spectrum.

Samantha Bergmann

Samantha Bergmann, PhD, BCBA-D, LBA - Assistant Professor of Behavior Analysis

Dr. Samantha Bergmann is an Assistant Professor of Behavior Analysis at the University of North Texas. She provides behavioral intervention services for children with autism at KFAC and specializes in the treatment of early language acquisition, pre-academic skills, social skills, and activities of daily living.

Karen Toussaint  

Karen A. Toussaint, PhD, BCBA-D - Assistant Professor of Behavior Analysis

Dr. Karen Toussaint is an Assistant Professor of Behavior Analysis at the University of North Texas. She provides behavioral intervention services for children with autism at KFAC and specializes in the treatment of severe behavior disorders and early language acquisition. While at KFAC, Dr. Toussaint also conducts research evaluations related to improving clinical outcomes.

Sonny Brownlee

Jesse "Sonny" Brownlee – Office Support Associate

Sonny Brownlee joined the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in a volunteer capacity in 2014. His attention to detail, experience with Excel, and perfect attendance soon landed him a job as a part-time Budget Clerk where he continued to support the administrative team. Sonny accepted a full-time role as an Office Support Associate in 2018 and provides budget and IT support to the KFAC.

Mary-Ellen McComb

Mary-Ellen McComb - Sr. Administrative Specialist

Mary-Ellen joined the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in 2015 with a varied background in administration, human resources and special education. She handles all employee-related activities for the KFAC including recruiting, hiring and payroll. Mary-Ellen has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and moved from Canada to Texas in 1994. She and her husband, Gordon, have two adult children.

Kennedy Simmons

Kennedy Simmons - Office Support Associate

Kennedy Simmons joined the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in 2017 with more than five years of UNT-specific administrative and customer service experience. Kennedy manages the KFAC reception area and the annual Adventures in Autism Conference as well as many other varied responsibilities. After earning her Bachelor’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology, Kennedy developed an interest in autism and related research. She has future plans to pursue a Master’s degree in Special Education with a concentration in Autism Intervention.

Andrea Weertman

Andrea Weertman - Insurance & Billing Specialist

Andrea Weertman joined the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in June 2019, where she serves as the Insurance & Billing Specialist for the Center. She brings a wealth of talent and experience to our KFAC family, including certification as a Nationally Registered Certified Coding Specialist (NRCCS) from the College for Health Care Professions in Fort Worth.

Paulina Vega

Paulina Vega - Enrollment Customer Service Representative

Paulina joined the KFAC team in 2017 as a part-time Registered Behavior Technician. After her graduation from the University of North Texas, with a B.S. in Applied Behavior Analysis, she accepted a full-time position at KFAC. Paulina is bilingual and coordinates all client and staff schedules as well as serving as a liaison between the clinical and administrative teams. She is currently enrolled in the Master’s degree program for Special Education with a concentration in Autism Intervention, and plans to obtain her BCBA credential.

Lindsey Hartzel

Lindsey Hartzel - Behavior Technician 

Lindsey joined the KFAC team in June 2015. She received her Bachelor's degree in Speech and Hearing Sciences at the University of North Texas, and is working on a Master’s degree, with an emphasis on Autism, from Ball State University. Lindsey has several years of experience working with children in both home and clinical settings.

Kassie Locker

Kassie Locker – Behavior Technician 

Kassie Locker joined the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in September 2017. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Child Development from Texas Woman’s University in 2013. Kassie has eight years of varied experience working with children in educational, home and clinical settings.

Emily Nichols

Emily Nichols - Behavior Technician

Emily joined the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in September 2016. She received her Bachelor's degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from the University of North Texas and plans to pursue a Master's degree as well. Emily has over three years of experience working with children with autism in both clinical and home settings.

Fredrick Sembatya

Fredrick Sembatya – Behavior Technician

Fredrick arrived in Texas, from Uganda, to join the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in February 2018. He received his Bachelor’s Degree in Special Needs Education from the University of Pedagogical Sciences in Cuba, and a Master’s Degree in Autism from the University of South Wales, United Kingdom. Fredrick has over 10 years of experience with working with children and young adults with autism and related special educational needs, in school and home settings.

Dakota Stevens

Dakota Stevens - Behavior Technician

Dakota joined the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in October 2016. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Development and Family Studies at the University of North Texas and completed his Master’s Degree in Educational Psychology with an emphasis in Learning and Development in 2018. He has more than four years of experience working with children.

Joy Stewart

Joy Stewart - Behavior Technician

Joy joined the Kristin Farmer Autism Center in August 2015. She received her Bachelor's degree in Speech and Hearing Sciences from the University of North Texas and plans to pursue a Master's degree as well. Joy has four years of experience working with children with autism in a clinical setting.