Meet the Founder

Heather Volchko

It was my high school and paraprofessional experiences with students with cognitive disabilities that lead me to pursue an undergraduate degree in special education. Unbeknownst to me at the beginning, my undergrad experiences are also where I uncovered my passion for social justice and troubled youth. I entered my professional career focused on finding and supporting students similar to those I met in corrections with the hope of meeting them before they landed in "the system." I pursued this goal as a resource, self-contained, and alternative special education teacher in neighborhood, co-op'd, and alternative schools.

While I was working with the crew in alternative ed, I realized that my favorite part about teaching was partnering with students through unique barriers toward realizing they were capable of more than they thought. So I started my masters in educational psychology to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst and spent the next season of my career coordinating and consulting on behavioral services in therapeutic and public settings.

Yet as I designed, launched, and organized programmatic supports to enable this population to reach beyond what they could see for themselves, I increasingly engaged in work untangling messy systems of decision-making, power, and ulterior motives. These experiences are what ultimately launched me into pursuing my doctorate in program evaluation and organizational behavior management. It is my goal to help organizations redesign climates and processes affecting staff motivation and productivity so that students can be more freely supported in their day-to-day moments.

I believe that resistant learners can be successful when staff are supported by efficiently resourced systems.

Education

  • Doctor of Strategic Leadership - Liberty University

  • Doctor of Philosophy in Special Education (ABD) - University of Illinois at Chicago

  • Master of Education, Educational Psychology and Behavior Analysis - University of Cincinnati

  • Bachelor of Science in Education, Secondary Special Education - Indiana University Bloomington

Certifications

  • Board Certified Behavior Analyst, Behavior Analysis Certification Board

  • Organizational Behavior Management Specialist Certificate, ABA Technologies

  • Ci3T Trainer, Comprehensive Integrated Three-Tiered Model of Prevention

  • Educational Research Methodology Certification, University of Illinois at Chicago

  • Trauma-Informed Behavior Analysis, Cusp Emergence University

  • CPI Nonviolent Crisis Intervention Trauma Trainer, Crisis Prevention Institute

  • Professional Educator License, Illinois State Board of Education and Indiana State Board of Education

Organizations

  • American Evaluation Association (AEA)

  • Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP)

  • American Educational Research Association (AERA)

  • Center for Culturally Responsive Evaluation and Assessment (CREA)

  • Association of Behavior Analysis International (ABAI)

  • Association of Contextual Behavioral Science (ACBS)

  • Council for Exceptional Children (CEC)

  • Christian Educators Association International (CEAI)

  • Phi Delta Kappa International (Pi Lambda Theta)

Meet the Rest of the TLC Team

Manny Huecias

Behavior Technician

  • student outcomes

  • student and family linkages

  • bilingual support and training (Spanish)

Candace McCoy

Behavior Technician

  • school team coaching

  • bridging inclusion practices

  • emotional and behavioral disorders

Marla Watts

Behavior Analyst

  • family education and support

  • delayed social-emotional development

  • bilingual support and training (Spanish)

Allison Hale

Behavior Analyst

  • social-emotional-behavioral learning

  • early intervention & inclusion readiness

  • classroom management practices

Zoë Dehmer

Organizational Development Specialist

  • logistical communications

  • project management talent

  • leadership training and facilitation

Flora Yao

Content and Marketing Designer

Richard Van Acker

Mentor

  • emotional and behavior disorders

  • evidence-based program development

  • classroom management practices