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Board of Directors

We are a branch of the International Dyslexia Association and we serve the northern Ohio community. Whether you have dyslexia, or know someone with dyslexia, we are here to offer hope, support and resources for personal success to people with dyslexia and those who interact with them in northern Ohio.  We believe it is never too late to provide remedial services to individuals with dyslexia.

As an active and passionate board, we provide resources and events to help those navigate their journey through dyslexia. We strive to consistently meet our community’s needs in understanding dyslexia. We welcome you to contact us for additional information.

We thank you for support,

Theresa Kaska, M.Ed., CALT, CDT
IDA Northern Ohio


Theresa Kaska, M.Ed., CALT, CDT

Theresa Kaska is a graduate of Mount Union College where she obtained a bachelor of science in sports medicine and education. She holds a master of education from Notre Dame College and is a licensed intervention specialist for students with mild/moderate learning disabilities in grades K–12. She is also a certified Academic Language Therapist, a member of the Academic Language Therapy Association, a Certified Dyslexia Therapist, and member of the International Dyslexia Association. Her training as a therapist is highly specialized in multi-sensory, structured language techniques, grammar, verbal and written expressions. She has additional training in Lips, Keys to Literacy, Wilson Reading System, FUNdations K and 1st grade, and she completed Multisensory Math 1 and has started Multisensory Math 2 with Marilyn Zecher.

Andrea Thomas, MEd., CALT
Second Vice-President

Andrea received her Masters of Education Degree from Southern Methodist University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Speech Communication from Texas A&M University. Andrea’s personal connection with dyslexia began in 2004, with the diagnosis of one of her children. This event proved to be a turning point in Andrea’s professional career. She began a quest for information and education about dyslexia, and entered her training at Southern Methodist University.

Andrea has had the opportunity to work in many capacities in multiple states. Her experience includes developing and maintaining a private practice, contracting with schools to implement multi-sensory instruction, teaching Educational Psychology at the university level, serving as the Secretary for the Kentucky IDA Board, working as an instructional specialist at the Learning Center at The Lexington School, and serving as an academic language therapist at West Side Montessori.

Sue Boettler, CALT
First Vice President

Sue Boettler is the parent of a son with dysgraphia.  She is certified in the Orton-Gillingham method and is currently a reading tutor at the Canton Masonic Learning Center.  She is the administrator of a parent support group, Decoding Dyslexia Canton Ohio.  Sue is dedicated to improving education for the dyslexic community.  She runs a small family business with her brother in North Canton.


Cheryl Kleist, M.B.A.

Cheryl Kleist became involved with dyslexia advocacy when she testified in front of the Ohio Senate Education Committee for dyslexia legislation in October 2011.  At the time, she was struggling to get the school district to acknowledge her son’s reading disability.  She decided to get training in both special education law and structured literacy so she could better advocate for her son.  She has completed over 150 coursework hours from The Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators (AOGPE) and Orton Gillingham International.   She is a founding member of Decoding Dyslexia Ohio.  She became a board member for the Northern Ohio International Dyslexia Association in 2013 and was Co-Chair of the Ohio IDA Executive Legislative Committee.  She is serving her second term on the Ohio Department of Education State Advisory Panel for Exceptional Children (SAPEC).

Cheryl has a degree in accounting and an MBA concentrated in operations management.  Before being a stay at home mom, she was a financial controller for an automotive manufacturing supplier.

Tammy Alexander, CALT

Tammy Alexander is the owner and director of a reading clinic originally founded by the Medical College of Ohio, now called Alexander, Armus Reading Specialists. She has been certified and/or trained in many Orton-Gillingham
based multisensory structured language programs, such as the Orton-Gillingham approach, Wilson Reading System (Level II; Wilson Dyslexia Therapist), Alphabetic Phonics, as well as Lindamood-Bell programs, such as Lindamood Phoneme Sequencing, Seeing Stars, and Visualization and Verbalization.  In addition, she has training in other  reading and writing programs, including Framing Your Thoughts, Read Naturally, RAVE-O, among others.

Tammy came to the United States from Toronto, Canada, where she earned a B.Ed. from the University of Western Ontario and a B.A. and M.A. from the University of Toronto. After teaching for nine years for North York Schools with a professional focus in Learning Disabilities, Gifted Education, and Gifted/LD Education, she moved to Toledo, Ohio, and worked as a reading instructor for Jean Armus at the reading
clinic she now owns.

Tammy is committed to providing explicit, systematic, multisensory language instruction to students and to heightening an awareness of dyslexia in the Toledo/Northwest Ohio area. Tammy has done many presentations on dyslexia-related topics to educators and parents.

Jennifer Scaffidi, M.Ed., CALT, QI
Executive Committee

Jennifer Scaffidi is a Certified Academic Language Therapist and a Multisensory Math Instructor.  She is currently working in the Plain Local School District as well as assisting Marilyn Zecher in teaching her online Multisensory Math courses.  She privately works with students in both reading and math.  Jennifer also presents professional development workshops on Multisensory Reading and Math strategies.

Jennifer holds a master’s degree in School Administration from Ashland University and a BS in Elementary Education from Bowling Green State University with a minor in Psychology.  She is a member of the Academic Language Therapist Association.

Amy Colaco
Service Coordinator

Amy Colaco has a B.S. in Business Administration from Clarion University of Pennsylvania and a professional Human Resources background with emphasis in health and welfare employee benefits analytics and consulting.   As an employee with two major international corporations, she served in national corporate endeavors, and as a client-serving consultant for businesses, unions, non-profit and school district administrations across Northeast Ohio.

Amy became involved in the dyslexia community after the many years of learning and life challenges associated with her dyslexic son.

Board Members

  • Denise Adams
  • David Buchanan
  • Heather Campbell, M.Ed.
  • Maribeth Connor, M.Ed.
  • Susan Croy
  • Michelle Elia
  • Emma Elliott
  • Alec Greenfield
  • Betty Marko, Ed.S.
  • Susan Moyer
  • Nancy Osko, M.Ed.
  • Jo Ann Sicafuse
  • Katie Whyte

Advisory Council

  • Morgan Amend, M.Ed, CALT
  • Ellen Brick, MA
  • Katie Bodnovich, CALT
  • Karen Dakin, M.Ed.
  • Barbara Ekelman, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
  • Stephanie Gordon, MA
  • Monica Gordon Pershey, Ed.D., CCC-SLP
  • Trish Harpring, M.Ed., MA
  • Joyce Hedrick, M.Ed.
  • Lori Josephson, MA
  • Pam Kanfer, MS, CALT
  • Sr. Marcia Kiser, M.Ed.
  • Jennifer LaHaie, M.Ed., CALT
  • Donna Levine, M.Ed.
  • Mary Heather Munger, Ph.D.
  • Mary Jo O’Neill, M.Ed
  • Larry Orrach, M.Ed.
  • Carol Perry, CALP
  • Heidi Peters, M.Ed.
  • Rebecca Rowell-Malinas, M.Ed., MA
  • Judith Saltzman, JD
  • Jean Tobias, MS, NCSP, CALT
  • Rebecca Tolson, Ph.D., CALT, QI
  • Gretchen Walsh, MS.Ed.
  • Steven Wexberg, MD

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