Meet our Team

Michelle Bouchard, BCBA

Clinical Director 

My passion is to provide children and their families the very best treatment possible. I believe treatment should be individualized and specifically designed for each client; not a cookie-cutter formula for them to follow. I enjoy every aspect of my job and feel so fortunate that I get to go to work with children and their families. I have been working in the field for over 16 years, and have experience working in families’ homes, within the school district, in clinics, and research settings. 

I received my Bachelor’s in Science from Western Michigan University, where I was introduced to the field. My practicum was completed at a school designed specifically for children with autism, where I fell in love with the work, and found my niche. I then pursued my Master’s in School Psychology and became a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst.

I worked at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) doing research on early intervention with children with autism; this was part of the autism intervention research program (AIRP) Autism Center of Excellence, under Dr. Laura Schreibman and Dr. Aubyn Stahmer. I was trained in Pivotal Response Training by Dr. Schreibman (the co-developer of PRT and a leading expert in treatment for children with autism) and Dr. Stahmer (developer of Classroom Pivotal Response Teaching [CPRT]). Additionally, I was trained in how to teach social communication to children with autism developed by Dr. Brooke Ingersoll and Anna Dvortcsak. I am also well versed in Naturalistic and Developmental Behavior interventions. 

Interventions Trained In:

  • Pivotal Response Treatment (PRT)
  • Early Intervention Developmental Model
  • Positive Behavior Supports
  • Picture Exchange Communication (PECS)
  • Natural Environment Teaching (NET)
  • Verbal Behavior 
  • Social Communication
  • Parent Training

I look forward to an opportunity to work with you.

Robert Thomas

Registered Behavior Technician

I have always been passionate about working with and assisting others. Now that I have been given the opportunity to work with Believing In Change and seeing the impact we have on the lives of others, I strive to continue assisting others. I am a California State University of San Marcos alumni with a bachelor’s degree in liberal studies to continue to pursue a career working with children.

Smriti Gautam

Registered Behavior Technician, PEER’s Certified Leader

I am Smriti Gautam, and I have dedicated the past four years of my career to the Applied Behavioral Analysis field. My passion is to help others and this field gives me the opportunity to make a significant impact on individuals and their families. In my role, I am privileged to work closely with clients, guiding them in developing essential skills that will increase connections within their families, friendships, and communities. Witnessing the positive changes in my clients consistently is always rewarding and fulfilling. Furthermore, I am actively pursuing further education through a master’s program in ABA, with the goal of becoming a Board Certified Behavior Analyst, which I believe will guide me to continue helping future families. 

Hosanna Sims

Behavior Technician

Working with children has always been a passion of mine and I’m so excited to have the chance to do so early in my career. I recently graduated from Palomar College and am currently pursuing my education in Sociology with a focus on Health, Education, and Welfare at California State University, San Marcos. Joining a dedicated team that works with families and places a strong emphasis on naturalistic behavioral development will not only provide me with valuable professional experience in Applied Behavioral Analysis but also enhance my understanding of the workforce.


Sabrina Ibarra

Registered Behavior Technician

I have always known that working with children is my passion. Now getting that opportunity as a Registered Behavior Technician with Believing in Change and seeing the positive impact we all make on these children’s lives is the most rewarding feeling I have experienced. I am currently a student at MiraCosta College and pursuing my bachelor’s degree in Liberal Arts to continue my work with children in the future. I look forward to working you and your children!

Jessica Kesler

Registered Behavior Technician, PEERS Certified Leader

I have always wanted to work with children and I strive to make a difference in their lives in any positive way I can. Believing in Change has given me the opportunity to continue to work with kids and provide me with more experience to guide me into being an even more positive role model.
I am a student at CSU San Marcos, earning my BA in Liberal Studies before I move on to earn my teaching credential in Special Education. I earned my Associates Degree (AA) in Early Childhood Education before transferring from my home town of Pismo Beach, CA, to come to school and continue my education.

Believing In Change team + volunteers at our Easter Extravaganza Social Skills event.