Our Staff

Jeremiah Gray
Operations Director

Jeremiah has a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Bellevue University. He joined the Pier Center for Autism in April 2017 following an 18 year career in Human Resource Management.  Jeremiah also has extensive knowledge of sales and marketing as well as finance.  He’s excited to be able to support the clinic, the staff, and the clients, any way that he can.

Miranda Smalley
Clinical Director

img_0230Miranda has a master’s degree in Educational Psychology with an emphasis in Behavior Analysis from West Virginia University. She is a former graduate supervisor at the Intensive Autism Service Delivery Clinic and teaching assistant at an alternative elementary education program in Morgantown, West Virginia.  Miranda joined the Pier Center in August 2016 and is excited to continue her journey working with children with autism.  In July 2018, Miranda was promoted to Clinical Director of the Pier Center.

Maddy Lillie
Board Certified Behavior Analyst

Maddy has a master’s degree in Experimental Psychology with an emphasis in Behavior Analysis from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. She is a former behavior consultant and clinical supervisor at Autism Intervention Milwaukee and a graduate supervisor and lead therapist at the Tiger Center for Applied Behavior Analysis Services in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Her training and experiences encompass early intervention with young children, skill acquisition, and the reduction of severe problem behavior. Maddy joined the Pier Center as a Board Certified Behavior Analyst in August 2018 and is excited to continue to learn about and from children on the autism spectrum.

Andrea Prior
Behavior Technician

10301191_10152375465819607_783272700459252736_n-1Andi has a bachelor’s degree in Human Resources and Family Sciences with an emphasis in Child Development Studies from the University of Nebraska in Lincoln.  For the past 20 years, Andi has worked various jobs in the social work field at the Department of Human Services in Nebraska, Boys Town, and, most recently, teaching Parenting classes for Crittenton Resource Center.  Andi’s passion for children with Autism comes from  having a son who has Autism.

Alex Quinlain
Registered Behavior Technician

Alex (2) Alex graduated from Morningside College with a Bachelor of Arts in English. He formerly worked at an alternative school in South Sioux City, NE as a para-educator. While there, he developed a language program to help students develop their language skills. He has a passion for working with people of all ages and plans to continue his education at the University of South Dakota to pursue a master’s degree in School Counseling.

Trudy Rants
Registered Behavior Technician

TrudyTrudy has a bachelor of arts from Morningside College. She previously worked for Mid-Step Services as a QMRP at Parkview Homes. She has spent the last few years working in the Sioux City Schools at both the elementary and middle school levels with children with autism spectrum disorder. Trudy joined the Pier Center in February 2015, and her excitement about employing behavior analysis to help clients reach their fullest potential beams forth from her humor and smile.

Natasha Weltz
Behavior Technician

img_3291Natasha graduated from Buena Vista University in 2014 with her degree in elementary education with endorsements in reading and special education. She worked at Irving Elementary for 3 years as a reading interventionist then transferred to North Middle and worked as a para-educator in the School within a School classroom. Natasha joined the Pier Center in January 2015. As a behavior technician she excels in data collection, protocol implementation and assisting her clients in achieving their goals.

Makenzie Bates
Behavior Technician

Makenzie joined the Pier Center in May 2018 and has a bachelor’s of science in (Molecular and Behavioral) Neuroscience from the University of Nebraska at Omaha. While obtaining her degree, she worked as an inpatient physical and occupational therapy tech. She also interned at the Madonna School for Special Needs in Omaha, Ne. Her interest in the autism community began while working as a nanny for a child with autism. She is excited to help children unlock their full potential.

Katie Phillips
Behavior Technician

Katie graduated from Briar Cliff University in May of 2017 with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Prior to the Pier Center, she worked locally as an optician.  Katie joined the Pier Center in August of 2017 and plans on pursuing a Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology, with an emphasis on Applied Behavior Analysis.

Jacey Hanna
Registered Behavior Technician

Jacey started at the Pier Center for Autism in August of 2017. She graduated from Graceland University with a Bachelors Degree in Human Services with a Spanish minor and an emphasis on Psychology. She has extensive experience in the daycare field as well as the YWCA of Fort Dodge.   Jacey plans to continue her education within the next few years to complete her masters degree in a behavior related field.

Catherine Clark
Behavior Technician

Catherine joined the Pier Center in February 2018.  She graduated from Wayne State College with a bachelor’s degree in Human Service Counseling. In college, Catherine interned with the Boys and Girls Home and Family Services in Sioux City, where she learned she loved working with children. Catherine’s passion for autism stems from having a sister with autism.

Elizabeth Penyich
Behavior Technician

Elizabeth joined the Pier Center in February 2018.  She graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a degree in Psychology with an emphasis in Behavior Modification. Prior to joining the Pier Center, Liz spent two years as a case worker for individuals with various disabilities, including mental health services. In addition, she has extensive experience with child care and preschool education. Elizabeth is excited is to be able to combine her passions and help individuals reach their unlimited potential. “Do what you love, and you’ll never have to work a day in your life.”

Brooke Smith
Behavior Technician

Brooke graduated from Morningside College with a bachelor’s degree in Counseling Psychology. During her last semester at Morningside, Brooke interned at the Pier Center and started working full-time in May of 2018. Throughout college, Brooke worked with individuals with a variety of disabilities at Crossroads of Western Iowa which is where her interest in working with individuals with autism started.

Maria Lonsdale
Behavior Technician

Maria graduated from Morningside College with a major in Counseling Psychology. She joined our team in May 2018. Maria previously worked at the Crittenton Center Emergency Shelter & Youth Development

Cheyanne Dean
Behavior Technician

Cheyanne has a bachelor’s degree in English from Morningside College. She joined the Pier Center in April 2019 after working as a para-educator for three years in the Sioux City Schools. Cheyanne found her passion for working with children with autism in her amazing relationship with her primary student. She is excited to build new relationships in supporting other children with autism. Cheyanne plans to further her education in an autism related field.

Social Skills Team

Jan Turbes

Jan is an Autism and Challenging Behavior Specialist within the tri-state area with immense experience in the areas of assessment and treatment of challenging behavior.  Jan works part-time with the Pier Center to support a variety of needs for our clients including challenging behavior and social skills.  With over a decade of experience in the fields of behavior analysis and autism, Jan remains one of our biggest advocates for the advancement and continued training of our staff.  In addition, Jan was one of the original board members for the Pier Center for Autism.