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Our team is passionate about working with families to provide them with the best evidence-based approaches in a highly supportive environment, to ensure children reach their full potential. Our team has a wealth of experience in working with children in the early years – particularly children with autism. 

The CliniKids therapy team is made up of qualified health professionals including Speech Pathologists, Psychologists and Occupational Therapists. Our therapy team is supported by a Clinical Services Manager and Family Coordinator. Our Family Coordinator works closely with families to help them navigate funding pathways and provides information to assist them while using our service. 

The CliniKids team works very closely with the internationally-renowned Autism Research Team at Telethon Kids Institute to collaborate on clinical research projects and translate interventions into clinical practice.

Andrew Whitehouse: Director

Andrew Whitehouse

Andrew Whitehouse is the Angela Wright Bennett Professor of Autism Research at the Telethon Kids Institute and Professor of Autism Research at The University of Western Australia. He is Chief Research Officer of the Cooperative Research Centre for Living with Autism (Autism CRC) and Adjunct Professor at Curtin University and Edith Cowan University. He has also been awarded Australia’s most prestigious scientific award, the Eureka Prize.

At the Telethon Kids Institute he leads a large team that use a wide range of methodologies to investigate the early identification and intervention of children with Autism Spectrum Conditions, including molecular genetics, neuroscience, endocrinology, behavioural experiments and clinical trials. Andrew has published over 150 peer-reviewed journal articles and attracted over $35 million in competitive research grants. He currently presents an internationally syndicated video series called ’60 Second Science”, which has been viewed by over 1 million people. He is an advisor to State and Commonwealth Governments on policies relating to children with Autism Spectrum Conditions, and he chaired the committee that generated Australia’s first national guideline for autism diagnosis.

Gemma Upson: General Manager

Gemma Upson

Gemma is the Clinical Services Manager of CliniKids, responsible for the strategic creation and development of CliniKids, along with the operational management. Gemma has extensive experience in running clinical services for all ages in private, public and research settings.

Through her previous role as Head of Clinical Services at Ear Science Institute, which she held for 12 years, she specialised in the niche audiology areas of hearing implants (including cochlear implants), vestibular, and paediatric diagnostic services.  Over her tenure this unit was established, developed and expanded to be the third largest hearing implant program in Australia and recognised world-wide for its’ clinical expertise and research into clinical outcomes.

Gemma holds a Bachelor of Science and a Masters in Audiology, both from University of Western Australia. Gemma holds an Adjunct Research Fellow position in the School of Surgery, University of Western Australia and is a member of the National Disability Services’ Clinical and Allied Health Subcommittee. She is passionate about leading and developing high performing teams and systems to deliver exceptional care to children and families in the health and disability industry.


Katia Haines: Clinical Services Manager 





Katia is the Clinical Services Manager and is responsible for shaping the direction of the clinical services and supporting the highly qualified and experienced team of CliniKids clinicians. Katia combines her almost 20 years’ experience working with children with autism and their families with the most up to date clinical practices to provide high quality interventions that improve quality of life for the whole family system. After identifying a need for a more holistic early intervention process that involves families in planning, implementation and review, Katia completed her Masters/PhD in Clinical Psychology and uses her therapeutic and research skills in her daily practice when working with children and families and when supporting her team.


Katia’s passion for empowering caregivers to support their child’s social, emotional and psychological development ensures that provision of family-focused support remains the focus of the CliniKids mission, and she is proud to be working with a team that share the same vision. 

Georgia Cunningham: Clinical Lead


Georgia is a Speech Pathologist with a passion for supporting people with a disability, in particular autism Spectrum Disorders.  In addition to her Speech Pathology qualification, she holds a Masters Degree in Autism Studies, during which she investigated inclusive education for students with Autism and the biggest predictors of successful inclusion in mainstream settings. 

Georgia has a strong interest in promoting autism awareness and understanding in the wider community which has lead to a number of community presentations including autism awareness and support strategies for the general public,  Department of Education, Catholic Education Office, Western Australian Police Force and the West Australian Dental Health Association. She has also presented at the Speech Pathology Australia conference and AGOSCI. 

She has a particular interest in complex communication, including the use of Augmentative and Alternative Communication systems for people with Autism across the lifespan.  She has previously worked in a specialist AAC team, prescribing and implementing communication systems for people with autism across the lifespan. Georgia is accredited in a number of treatment approaches such as Early Start Denver Model (ESDM), Preschool Autism Communication Therapy (PACT), KONTAKT, Hanen programs, Triple P Stepping Stones and diagnostic tools such as the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS-2). In her role as Clinical Lead, Georgia co-leads and supports the clinical team and oversees the development of clinical activities. 

Regina Ledo: Registered Psychologist


Regina Ledo is a Psychologist with over 25 years’ experience in working with individuals with autism and their families.  Regina studied at Murdoch University; while undertaking post-graduate studies she joined the landmark Murdoch University Young Autism Project and began her career in supporting individuals with autism. She spent 12 years at the Princeton Child Development Institute (PCDI) – a private, center-based educational program for individuals with autism, the majority of these as a trainer in the institute’s early intervention, education, and adult programs.  This included a five-year appointment as a Teaching Parent at one of in the institute’s group homes, where she resided with her family and five young adults with ASD. 

Sarah Pillar: Speech Pathologist

Sarah Pillar

Sarah has broad previous experience working in both metropolitan Perth as well as regional surrounds. She has provided assessment and intervention for families with a diverse range of needs, with a focus on tailoring services to the unique and practical needs of an individual and their family.

Sarah has enthusiasm for applying research evidence into clinical practice in whatever area she is working in; whether it be literacy, feeding, speech sound production, language or behaviour management. Sarah has experience providing comprehensive communication assessments, as well as diagnostic assessments for ASD. She loves working directly with children, but also loves working with parents and supporting them to enhance their skills in understanding and teaching their child.

Sarah participates in ongoing learning and development and is trained in the delivery of Preschool Autism Communication Therapy (PACT), Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS-2), Level 4 Group Stepping Stones Triple P – Positive Parenting Program, SOS Approach to Feeding, Treatment of Childhood Apraxia using Rapid Syllable Transition Treatment (ReST), Letters and Sounds and Sounds-Write. Sarah is completing her PhD focusing on communication development in the first 3 years of life.

Marie Rodatz:  Occupational Therapist

Marie is an Occupational Therapist with over 15 years’ experience working with children with Autism. She holds a Bachelor and Master in Occupational Therapy. For her Master degree, she researched the process of collaborative consultation between teachers and Occupational Therapists working with children with Autism.

Marie has gathered experience as an Occupational Therapist in Germany, Ireland, the USA and Australia. During her career Marie has been working with pre-school and school aged children with Autism and developmental delay.

She has presented at Occupational Therapy conferences and has presented a lecture on ‘Occupational Therapy and Autism’ to Occupational Therapy students in Ireland.  

Marie enjoys having fun with children in direct sessions and working collaboratively with parents throughout the process.  Marie has a particular interest in understanding sensory challenges children with Autism experience and assisting children in becoming independent with activities of daily living. 

Aria May: Speech Pathologist

Aria has over 10 years’ experience working as a paediatric Speech Pathologist within acute hospital, community, and school-based services in Perth and in the United Kingdom. Aria has a passion for working in the disability sector, specifically in the area of autism.

 Aria has experience leading a speech pathology team and has worked in senior autism clinical positions in London. She has worked with children with autism in early intervention through to school age and young adult settings. Aria is trained in a number of approaches and assessment tools including the SCERTS® Model for Autism, Intensive Interaction, Hanen programs, Verve Child Interaction and Specialist Infant Dysphagia Accreditation.  Aria is experienced with infant and childhood feeding difficulties and has a specific interest in alternative and augmentative communication (AAC) supports, and supporting emotional regulation and relationships for children and teens with autism. She strives to empower families and schools to develop their capacity and skills to achieve best outcomes and ensure sustainability using a holistic approach. 


Abby Chee: Clinical Psychologist


Abby is a Clinical Psychologist with an interest in working with children and their families. She holds a Bachelor of Science (Psychology) Honours from University of Western Australia and a Master of Psychology (Clinical) from Curtin University. She is a trained autism assessor, with experience in Applied Behavioural Analysis therapy, and has worked with many children with developmental delays. Her experience in working with children includes providing assessments and interventions in a variety of settings including Child Development Service, Multisystemic Therapy – Specialised CAMHS, and private autism service. Abby enjoys helping children with emotional and behavioural difficulties and helping parents to support their children’s development and mental health.  

Lisa Matys: Speech Pathologist


Kate Sorensen: Family Coordinator


Kate has joined the team with an extensive history in administration and family co-ordinating as well as working alongside children and their families in clinical and educational settings. Kate holds a Bachelor of Social Sciences and has also trained as a Behavioural Therapist. Throughout her many different professional roles Kate remained passionate about working alongside children with autism and their families, leading to her involvement with the Autism Research Team and now CliniKids.

Kate’s role as Family Coordinator is to support families through the process and help them to navigate available services, funding sources and available resources.

Tracy Storen: Receptionist


Tracy has over 20 years’ experience in customer service, she has worked with various community based companies such as Silver Chain, Medibank Health Solutions, Diabetes Association and has also had Receptionist & Administration roles with a Podiatrist and Physiotherapist. Tracy is very passionate about working within a company/institute that cares about their clients especially children. As well as many years of customer service experience Tracy has worked as a leisure instructor teaching children sport, art and dance classes within the community. This lead her to running her own business for many years where she taught 18 month – 5-year olds from all walks of life including some with developmental delays. Tracy will assist you with any of your queries about CliniKids as well as booking in appointments with our Therapist.