Pediatric Feeding Association Steering Committee


Alicia Raaum

AliciaAlicia works in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) with premature and medically fragile infants as well as on an outpatient basis at Swedish Hospital. She has served on the committee that rolled out a cue-based feeding protocol that applies to all premature and sick infants at the hospital’s NICU/ISCU. Alicia has also educated medical professionals at her hospital on oral motor and feeding skills, and she has mentored multiple speech language pathologists as part of preparing other professionals to provide inpatient feeding therapy to premature babies.

With a keen appreciation for how feeding plays an essential role in every child’s and family’s life, Alicia approaches feeding therapy by working with all family members to help their baby or young child establish a foundation for stable feeding skills.

When she’s not working with other babies, Alicia enjoys spending time with her husband and two young children, as well as pursuing her other passions: sailing and hiking.

Amy Faherty

AmyAmy is a speech language pathologist with expertise in pediatric feeding and swallowing disorders, particularly with respect to instrumental examination with the videofluoroscopic swallowing study (VFSS). She has more than 25 years’ experience conducting VFSSs for babies and children, dating back to the very first study at Seattle Children’s Hospital. Amy also works as a feeding specialist in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and on an outpatient basis at Valley Medical Center's Children's Therapy.

Sharing her passion for assessment and treatment of feeding/swallowing issues, Amy has instructed at the university level at multiple universities and presented regionally, nationally, and internationally. Amy co-authored a chapter titled “Issues in Pediatric Feeding & Swallowing” with Gay Lloyd Pinder, PhD, CCC-SLP [1], and has also published several other articles about pediatric swallowing and NICU best practices.

Amy’s approach to working with children and families is centered on making mealtimes safe, fun and a positive experience for all. She finds it a wondrous, rewarding experience to help tiny, fragile infants learn how to safely bottle or breastfeed, and to help understandably overwhelmed parents and children transform into happy, thriving families as the infant/child's feeding skills and overall medical status improves.

Amy lives in the greater Seattle area with her husband Jeff. She loves laughing with family and friends, travelling, entertaining and playing at the lake.

[1] Pinder, GL. & Faherty, AS., "Issues in Pediatic Feeding & Swallowing" Clinical Management of Motor Speech Disorder in Children, A. Caruso & E. Strand, (eds.) Theme Medical Publishers, Inc., New York, 1999, pp. 281-318.

Carol Lorioux Loup

CarolCarol is founder of the TOFT House in Everett, Washington, a dedicated space where feeding therapy takes place in an environment that mirrors home, and families undergo the transition from g-tube to oral feedings in a natural environment. She has a special interest in the social aspect of feeding and how it sustains and enhances relationships.

Carol has chosen to work with children with feeding issues because of her desire to help make family life less stressful for parents and children. She loves to see a whole new world open before them when feeding is a positive, fun experience.

Carol goes by her middle name “Lorioux.” She used to work in a restaurant and is a salsa queen. In her spare time, she loves to surf.

Cheryl Buettemeier

CherylCheryl is a speech language pathologist, currently serving as a program director of a Washington state Birth-to-Three center. She has spoken on the treatment of feeding issues at regional and local settings, including the Infant and Early Childhood Conference, Bastyr University, and the United Way Lunch and Learn lecture series.

Having been formally trained in working with infants and preschool children with neuromuscular difficulties, including being Neurodevelopmental Therapy (NDT) and NDT Baby Certified, Cheryl enjoys applying a broad spectrum of techniques in treating children dealing with feeding issues due to sensory differences, prematurity, cardiac issues, and craniofacial syndromes. She particularly enjoys problem-solving with parents to identify and apply effective strategies to help children become independent, oral eaters.

Cheryl lives in the greater Seattle area with her husband Mark, and has a daughter in college. One of her family’s hobbies is astronomy, and they own a telescope with an 18-inch mirror. Given the cloudy skies in Seattle, they don’t get to use it as often as they’d like, which is just the way their Golden Retriever, Chance, likes it.

Dar Mikkelsen

DarProfile coming soon.





Gay Lloyd Pinder

GayProfile coming soon.





Judy Simmons

JudyJudy is in private practice, but works in office-based and hospital settings. She specializes in helping neonates and young infants avoid long-term feeding issues. Having raised two children, her philosophy is one of compassion to help families avoid unnecessary stress that can be avoided by professional help. She focuses on “no tears for mothers, fathers, or babies” and formulating plans to help reduce stress in the feeding relationship.

Judy co-founded the special needs program at the Washington Academy of Performing Arts to help children with physical challenges experience the joys of dance. She has also taught classes on oral motor/feeding at Overlake Hospital Medical Center in Bellevue, Washington, to the King County public health department, and career counseling conferences.

In addition to helping children and families with feeding, Judy loves to visit her own grandbaby and plans to travel the world to see all 22 Jan Vermeer paintings and attend one of each of the four types of Grand Slam tennis tournaments with her husband and best friend, Scott.

Gay Naganuma Burton

GayGay is a physical therapist as well as a supervisor of the occupational therapists, physical therapist, and speech language pathologists at a Washington state Birth-to-Three center. She enjoys helping infants become oral feeders so they are no longer in need of their g-tubes.

Because eating is such a significant component of family life, Gay finds that helping kids have a safe, fun experience with meals is one of the most important developmental skills a therapist can address. Gay applies her background in Neurodevelopmental Treatment (NDT) to help children who have feeding issues and/or gross motor challenges.

Although indirectly related to her focus on feeding, Gay enjoys gardening and travel. She grows vegetables and only travels to places that have amazing food, so having pleasurable experiences with food ranks high in both her professional and personal life!

Karen Quinn-Shea

KarenKaren is an occupational therapist serving as part of Seattle Children’s Hospital Growth and Feeding Dynamics clinic and Occupational Therapy department. She also serves as the organizer for the Pediatric Feeding Association, coordinating planning committees and communications about upcoming meetings and professional development opportunities.

With almost 35 years of experience in working with children with feeding issues, she has treated many aspects of difficulty with feeding, and has particular expertise in working with children transitioning from tube feeding to oral eating. For Karen, it is a privilege to be invited to share in the family dynamics of mealtimes, and to be a part of the true joy that accompanies the process of a child learning to eat.

Karen advocates for a multi-disciplinary, team-based approach to helping children and families, and has formed a strong partnership with feeding professionals and parents to develop Seattle Children’s Hospital’s Intensive Feeding program.

When she’s not at Seattle Children’s Hospital, she enjoys tap dancing and hiking with her husband. She has three wonderful daughters who are now young adults, and appreciates any time she can spend with them.

Kathy Stewart

KathyKathy is an occupational therapist serving in a Washington state Birth-to-Three center and is a certified Nursing Child Assessment Satellite Training (NCAST) Instructor of the Parent-Child Interaction Scales during Feeding and Teaching. She has taught occupational therapy courses with a focus on pediatrics at the University of Washington and the University of Puget Sound during the past 20 years. She has published several research articles and a chapter on pediatric occupational therapy evaluation. She has also published an article on routines for families with young children who are growth faltering. [1]

A primary area of focus for Kathy is in helping parents gain and maintain positive interactions during mealtimes with their children. Addressing feeding challenges are critical for the entire family: for the child’s growth and development, for the parents’ peace of mind, and for positive family dynamics.

Kathy’s hobbies include hiking in the beautiful mountains of the Northwest and sharing good books with friends. She has much to share, thanks in part to an entertaining husband and her other loves: her two grandchildren.

Lynn Wolf

LynnLynn, co-author of the book Feeding and Swallowing Disorders in Infancy: Assessment and Management with Robin Glass, and author of numerous articles and other publications, provides feeding therapy to infants and their parents in a clinical setting at Seattle Children’s Hospital. She is also an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC).

Her passion is helping mothers and infants in their feeding relationship. For Lynn, there is nothing more rewarding than helping a mom feel successful in feeding her baby.

When she’s not travelling to speak at regional, national, and international conferences or working with infants, Lynn enjoys swimming, reading, and gardening.

Maria Cho

MariaMaria is the mother of a little boy named Kai, who is the inspiration behind her service to the Pediatric Feeding Association. Born three months early, Kai has faced a host of feeding complications, including a swallowing and vomiting disorder, which led to g-tube placement.

Having received treatment for Kai from numerous members of the Pediatric Feeding Association, Maria helped facilitate the evolution of the Special Interest Feeding Group into the Pediatric Feeding Association. Together with her husband, Edward, they founded pedsfeeds.com to better connect medical, therapeutic, mental health, and nutrition professionals to provide comprehensive support for families as they undertake the long and difficult journey of helping their children stabilize, grow, and gain weight while forming positive relationships with food, with family mealtimes, and most importantly, with the people who love them.

Robin Glass

RobinRobin is an occupational therapist and an international board certified lactation consultant at Seattle Children's Hospital. She is the co-author of "Feeding and Swallowing Disorders in Infancy: Assessment and Management" with Lynn Wolf as well as author of numerous journal articles.

She provides services to infants and their families as inpatients, including at the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), and outpatients. Her specialty is infant feeding and swallowing with an emphasis on complex breastfeeding issues and tube weaning in young infants. She finds joy in her work each day and is thankful for the ability to work so closely with infants and their parents. She is a sought after speaker locally, nationally, and internationally.

When not at work, she is passionate about yoga, reading, and spending time with her adult daughters.

Tiffany Elliot

TiffanyTiffany is a speech-language pathologist and serves medically fragile infants and children at Mary Bridge Children's Hospital in the outpatient setting as well as inpatient setting, including the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. She also works at Seattle Children's Hospital completing Videofluoroscopic Swallow Studies. Tiffany has been a repeat lecturer for a graduate early intervention course, presented at a local early childhood conference, and lectured for nursing staff at her hospital. She also was selected to be in the ASHA Leadership Development Program, leading an improvement project for the care of pediatric dysphagia patients.

Her passion is meeting families and children where they are. She enjoys developing a plan that meets the child's needs and addresses the family's goals to help feeding be a safe and pleasurable experience.

Tiffany lives in Seattle with her husband, Andrew, and their daughter. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family and enjoying the city.