Our comprehensive team of professional learning specialists, speech and language pathologists and neuropsychologists provide executive function based services for students and their families. Each team member specializes in working with students of various ages and specific disorders. We match your child to the specific clinician that will best meet his or her needs. Click on the clinician's name below to learn more about them.
Sarah Ward, MS CCC-SLP Open or Close
Sarah Ward, MS CCC-SLP
Sarah Ward, M.S., CCC/SLP and Co-Director has over 25 years experience in diagnostic evaluations, treatment and case management of children, adolescents and adults with a wide range of developmental and acquired brain based learning difficulties and behavioral problems not limited to but including:
• Attention Deficit Disorder
• Verbal Learning Disabilities
• Non-Verbal Learning Disabilities
• Asperger Syndrome
• Other Social-Cognitive Learning Disabilities
• Traumatic Brain Injury
• Acquired Brain Injury
Her particular interest is in the assessment and treatment of executive function deficits.
Sarah also provides consultation and expert witness testimony regarding the symptoms and functional presentation of deficits associated with brain based learning disabilities and the appropriateness of academic placement and treatment programs. She became a specialist in the assessment and rehabilitation of traumatic brain injury with an emphasis on the treatment of executive functions. She subsequently began to train graduate students in speech and language pathology, medical and special education professionals on the symptoms and treatment methods to improve the language, cognitive, executive function and social skills of brain based disorders.
Sarah is a Past President of the Massachusetts Brain Injury Association, member of the Massachusetts Acquired Brain Injury Advisory Board and the National Institutes of Health Model Systems Traumatic Brain Injury Grant Advisory Board and is a member of the American Speech and Language Hearing Association. She holds a faculty appointment at the Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions where she provides instruction to graduate level students in the assessment techniques, development of therapeutic objectives, and intervention strategies for individuals with traumatic brain injury.
Sarah is dedicated to developing innovative treatment strategies and educating the community to understand, care for and celebrate the learning and behavioral based differences in individuals with brain based learning differences. A popular speaker, Sarah is an internationally recognized expert on executive function and presents seminars and workshops on the programs and strategies she has developed with her Co-Director Kristen Jacobsen. Their 360 Thinking Executive Function Program received the Innovative Promising Practices Award from the National Organization CHADD. She has presented to and consulted with over 1200 public and private schools in the United States, Canada and Europe. Awards Received:
• Bette Ann Harris Distinguished Professional (2017)
- ACE awards (2013, 2016) from American Speech and Language Hearing Association
- Recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award from the Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions, May, 2005.
- Recipient of the Faculty in Excellence Award from the Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions, May, 2002 and 2011
- Recipient of the Partners in Excellence Award from the Massachusetts General Hospital , December, 1998
- Recipient of the Stephanie Macaluso Expertise in Clinical Practice Award for the Massachusetts General Hospital , June 1998
LICENSURE AND CERTIFICATION
- Licensed Speech and Language Pathologist of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts
- Certificate of Clinical Competence of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
Natalie Ross, MS CCC-SLP Open or Close
Natalie Ross, MS CCC-SLP
Natalie Ross, MS CCC-SLP is a speech-language pathologist who specializes in developmental executive function skill training. She is passionate about effective, patient-centered care and the use of innovative methods to teach and support individuals and families with communication, language, cognitive, executive function, and reading needs. In addition to her work as a speech-language pathologist, Natalie also develops and designs the clinical content database for a Boston-based health company and teaches a cognition and cognitive strategies course to STEM-inspired adolescents at MIT.
As a researcher, she has experience and interest in:
- Acquired/traumatic brain injury
- Cognitive-linguistic rehabilitation
- Educational methods (i.e., Montessori)
- Executive function
- Language processing
- Life participation
- Reading comprehension
- Social-emotional development
- Working memory
Natalie earned a BA in English and Psychology from the University of Vermont, a Montessori Early Education Teaching license, and an MS in Speech-Language Pathology with a Literacy Concentration and a Reading Specialist licensure from MGH Institute of Health Professions. She has experience in program development, including a Language and Literacy Intervention program in Seattle, WA and a graduate study abroad program in Puerto Rico that examined health care and bilingualism. During her personal time, Natalie enjoys running, cooking, learning languages, and spending time with her close friends and family.
Kristen Jacobsen Co-Director Open or Close
Kristen Jacobsen, MS CCC-SLP, Co-Owner and Co-Director
Ms. Kristen Jacobsen, MS CCC-SLP is a trained speech-language pathologist who is Co-Director at the Cognitive Connections Executive Function Practice. She provides training and coaching for teachers and professionals nationally. She also provides parent consultations, as well as student training and coaching services. Ms. Jacobsen works to research, develop and implement new methodology and programs that can maximize a student's ability to learn to their potential and increase self-esteem as they become more independent learners. Kristen is the co-author of the award-winning 360 Thinking Program which aims to improve students' executive function skills at school and home. She enjoys seeing students make new gains, as well as training teachers and therapists in the use of executive function teaching approaches. She has interests in cognition, language, and mindfulness.
She is a specialist in pediatric and adolescent learning challenges in the areas:
- Executive Function
- Language-Based Learning Disability
- Language and Literacy
- Nonverbal Learning Disability
- Post Concussive Syndrome and TBI
- Asperger's Disorder and Autism spectrum disorders
Ms. Jacobsen has worked as an educational consultant and speech-language pathologist in public education, private schools, and hospital settings. Ms. Jacobsen has provided teacher training seminars and school consultations nationally.
Prior to establishing a private practice, she worked with colleagues to create and implement comprehensive group therapy programs for language and cognition at Massachusetts General Hospital. She focused on working with adolescents diagnosed with ADHD and Post-Concussive Syndrome. She developed programs to successfully transition students into their school settings following mild traumatic brain injury.
Ms. Jacobsen was the recipient of the MGH Expertise in Clinical Practice Award.
During personal time, she enjoys biking, traveling as well as spending time with her husband and their 3 children.
Amy Annable, M.Ed. Open or Close
Amy Annable, M.Ed. is a dynamic special educator who brings 25+ years of teaching experiences to Cognitive Connections. She has worked in several independent schools in New England where she has designed, implemented and trained executive functioning, writing and reading intervention programs for whole class, small group, and individuals. She has a Masters in Reading and Language from the University of Massachusetts. Amy is a specialist in pediatric and adolescent:
- Language-Based Learning Disabilities
- Reading Comprehension
- Written Expression
- Executive Functioning
- Study Skills
Amy's work at Cognitive Connections has focused on developing students' attention, organization, planning, time awareness, project management, writing, and other executive function issues in individual and group training programs for students elementary through college. Amy has developed and implemented executive function-based groups and individual therapy sessions using our 360 Thinking Program in the schools and in our center in order to help students become more independent learners. Amy is trained in the following reading programs: Wilson Fundations, Orton Gillingham, Lively Letters, Rave-O, LiPS, and Visualizing and Verbalizing. The is also trained in several writing programs including Project Read’s Framing your Thoughts and the Landmark Writing Method. Her wealth of literacy training and executive function training enables her to target the appropriate reading and writing interventions for her students. In her personal time, Amy enjoys hiking, biking, swimming and spending time with her husband, daughter, and dogs.