Core Faculty

Seth Warschausky, Ph.D.

Dr. Warschausky is an Associate Professor, Founder of the ACAL, Principal Investigator of NIH, U.S. Department of Education/NIDRR and private foundation funded studies, as well as the Director of the Division of Rehabilitation Psychology and Neuropsychology in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of Michigan.  Dr. Warschausky's research focuses on the psychometrics of adapted neuropsychological assessment, neuropsychology of neurodevelopmental conditions, and the social development of children with disabilities.  He co-founded Section 1: Pediatric Rehabilitation Psychology of APA’s Division 22, Rehabilitation Psychology and is an APA Fellow.

Jacqueline Kaufman, Ph.D.

Dr. Jacqueline Kaufman is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. She completed a predoctoral internship at the Columbus Children's Hospital and has published in the area of executive functioning and neuroimaging. She joined the faculty in 2005 after a T-32 Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Michigan.  Dr. Kaufman's general research interests include the study of neuropsychological functioning in chronically ill pediatric populations.  Specific research interests involve the use of basic cognitive neuroscience protocols during adapted neuropsychological testing of children with motoric and language impairments.  She is currently funded through both the NIH and the NIDRR to examine visual inspection time in children with Cerebral Palsy. 


Marie Van Tubbergen, Ph.D.

Dr. Van Tubbergen is an Assistant Professor in PM&R.  She received her Ph.D. from Central Michigan University.  Her internship was at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and she completed her postdoctoral fellowship here at the University of Michigan.  Dr. Van Tubbergen is the psychologist at MedRehab Milestones NeuroRehabilitation Program, an outpatient rehabilitation program for pediatrics.  The clinic provides multi-disciplinary therapies for children and adolescents with congenital and acquired neurological injuries.  Her research interests include development of adapted techniques and accessible measures for use in neuropsychological assessment.  She is a co-investigator on two federally funded grants through the Adapted Cognitive Assessment Lab, which evaluates psychometric properties of adapted neuropsychological tests for use by individuals with speech and motor impairments.  Currently she is refining assessment processes to examine phonological processing abilities and ADHD symptoms among children with speech and motor impairments.  Dr. Van Tubbergen is the president-elect of Section 1 (Pediatrics) of APA Division 22 (Rehabilitation Psychology). 


Research Administrators


Lynn Driver, M.S., CCC-SLP

Ms. Driver is a senior clinician in the Department of Speech Pathology and supervisor of the Pediatric Speech Pathology division. Ms. Driver has 26 years of clinical experience in speech pathology, and has been at Mott for 23 years. In addition to her supervisory responsibilities, Ms. Driver directs the Augmentative and Alternative Communication Clinic at Mott, and staffs a multidisciplinary evaluation clinic specializing in differential diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders. She also works closely with pediatric neurology and otolaryngology in assessment and treatment of pediatric neurogenic and voice disorders. She has published numerous chapters on communication and swallowing in the ventilator assisted population. Ms. Driver has also presented at the state and national levels on a wide variety of speech and language topics. Ms. Driver has also volunteered for the past 20 years at the University of Michigan Trail’s Edge Camp for Ventilator Assisted Children, where she has assisted with a variety of adapted activities for children, including the tree climbing program.



Donna Riccio Omichinski, B.A., C.C.R.P.

Ms. Omichinski is the Study Coordinator for the Adapted Cognitive Assessment Lab in the Department of PM&R at the University of Michigan.  Her research interests include successful collaboration strategies in curriculum planning and constructive advocacy methods for parents of children with disabilities.  She has developed a model that demonstrates a systematic and positive intervention strategy for parents of children with special needs to implement when collaborating with schools and service providers which was presented at

the 2005 National TASH Conference.  Ms. Omichinski has authored parent-directed publications that address the use of adapted assessment and their incorporation into educational planning and has also authored and co-authored peer-reviewed publications focusing on the use of adapted technology and choice-making.  She currently serves as a member to the Ministry of Persons with disAbilities in the Catholic Archdiocese of Lansing (Michigan), and has developed adapted religious education curriculum (in publication).  She is serving a two-year appointment to the State of Michigan Board of Speech Language Pathology (2009-2011), and is a 2009 recipient of a certificate of appreciation from the University of Michigan's Council for Disability Concerns.  She has served as a parent representative to her home school district’s Special Education Steering Committee. Donna is the parent of a child with a disability.

Nicole Miller, B.A.

Mrs. Miller is a Research Associate for the Adapted Cognitive Assessment Lab in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of Michigan. She has several years of clinical and research administration experience working with children and their families in rehabilitation psychology. Also, Mrs. Miller has been a member of the Ghana Medical Rehabilitation Group (GMRG), a nonprofit organization working toward building a sustainable rehabilitation model for the country of Ghana and its people. Mrs. Miller is completing her Master’s degree in Social Work at the University of Michigan. She has expierence as an intern with several homeless family service programs at the SOS Community Services Center and the Education Project for Homeless Youth. Her research interests include infant mental health as well as the impact of poverty on the education and development of children. Mrs. Miller is also a successful entrepreneur and owner of a small business that she established in 2005.


Danielle Sandella, B.S.

Ms. Sandella is a Research Associate in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of Michigan. She has a dual appointment at the University, working in the ACAL and also for a research team in the Model Spinal Cord Injury Systems. She earned her Bachelor's degree in Movement Science from Michigan's Division of Kinesiology in 2008. Ms. Sandella previously assisted with research involving children with Down Syndrome in the Center for Motor Behavior and Pediatric Disabilities in the School of Kinesiology, as well as gait training in adults with spinal cord injuries in the Human Neuromechanics Lab. She has experience working with children with disabilities in adapted physical education in the Ann Arbor public school system. Ms. Sandella plans to begin graduate school in the fall of 2010 to complete her Master's of Science degree and become certified as a Physician’s Assistant.

Post-Doctoral Fellows


Stacie Leffard, Ph.D.
University of Michigan

Dr. Leffard is a post doctoral fellow in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of Michigan.  She earned her doctorate in School Psychology at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA. She completed her predoctoral internship at Allegheny Intermediate Unit and The Watson Institute. Her general research interests include psychometrics of traditional and adapted neuropsychological assessments and neuropsychological sequelae of developmental and acquired neurological impairment.


Laura Shank, PsyD.
University of Michigan

Dr. Shank is a post doctoral fellow in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of Michigan.  She completed her predoctoral training at LaRabida Children’s Hospital and graduated from Pacific University with an emphasis in pediatric psychology. Her general research interests include the use of adapted measures in neuropsychological assessments and cognitive and psychosocial factors influencing quality of life in children with chronic illness and disabilities.


Jacobus Donders, PhD
Chief Psychologist
Mary Free Bed Hospital

Dr. Donders is the Chief Psychologist at Mary Free Bed Hospital & Rehabilitation Center in Grand Rapids, MI.  He is board-certified by the American Board of Professional Psychology in both Clinical Neuropsychology and Rehabilitation Psychology.  He has authored or co-authored more than 80 publications in peer-reviewed journals.  He is a Fellow of the National Academy of Neuropsychology and of the American Psychological Association.  His main research interests include construct and criterion validity of neuropsychological test instruments and prediction of outcome in congenital disorders and acquired brain injury. 

Shana Asbell, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital

In addition to working as a clinical speech-language pathologist for more than ten years, Dr. Asbell earned a doctor of philosophy degree in clinical psychology with an emphasis in pediatric neuropsychology from the California School of Professional Psychology. Dr. Asbell’s clinical experiences include working in a variety of organizations, including not-for-profit clinics, private practice, schools, and hospitals with children who present with a variety of neurodevelopmental, neurobehavioral, and neurocognitive disorders. She has provided assessment and therapeutic treatment for children ranging in age from preschool to young adulthood, as well as consultation to their families and other professionals regarding the speech/language and cognitive rehabilitation needs of neurologically-impaired children. Dr. Asbell is a post-doctoral resident in Mary Free Bed’s Neuropsychology Department. She is the co-author of two books: The Source for PDD: Assessment and Intervention and The Source for TBI in Children and Adolescents.

Edward Hurvitz, M.D.
Chair, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
University of Michigan

Edward A. Hurvitz is Associate Professor and Chair, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PM&R) at the University of Michigan Medical School. He is the James W. Rae Collegiate Professor in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Dr. Hurvitz has been involved in the diagnosis and management of children with disabilities for over 20 years. His focus has been on individuals with cerebral palsy and other brain-related syndromes that start in the childhood years. His work covers such areas as spasticity management, motor control, and health and fitness. He has received support from the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research and from industry for these efforts. His current work focuses on body composition and fitness in children and adults with cerebral palsy, as well as overall health and function in adults with cerebral palsy. He also has worked to promote research in individuals with disability, serving as Co-Director of a National Institute of Health (NIH) sponsored rehabilitation research training program, and participating in panels and national courses related to this area.


Rita Ayyangar, M.D.
University of Michigan
Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Dr. Ayyangar is an Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation who is board certified in both Pediatrics and Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. Dr. Ayyangar's research interests are in spasticity management and traumatic brain injury.