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ACT's Vision

The vision is for all individuals with special needs to receive scientifically-validated treatment and as a result reach their potential and live a dignified and independent life within an inclusive and diverse community.

Mission Statement

Through caring and knowledgeable clinicians who design and implement treatment plans utilizing Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) technology and cultural awareness, individuals with special needs will learn new skills and eliminate challenging behaviors while navigating their social environment. ACT strongly upholds the belief that individuals with special needs have a right to a high quality of life within a diverse and inclusive community. Pursuing personal achievement and striving to fulfill ones’ potential is a natural right for all individuals. We believe that equipping individuals who have special needs with skills necessary for independent functioning can foster personal development and facilitate living a full and dignified life.
(Left to right, top to bottom)

Charisse Batugo Sy, M.A., BCBA – Clinical Director • Mariela Feldman, M.S., BCBA, QBA – Executive Director • Marcela Castanos, M.A. – Director of Clinical Operations • Sigalit Klein, M.S., M.A., LMFT – Director of Mental Health Services • George McKay III, M.S. – Director of Social Skills & Community Integration

Executive Director

Mariela Feldman is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA), who specializes in the treatment of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and related special needs. She has 20 years of experience in the field and holds a Master degree in Behavioral Psychology from the American Jewish University. Ms. Feldman oversees the provision of all services at ACT and is supported by highly-trained clinicians in the field.

Mrs. Feldman has worked as a behavior interventionist for the Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School District (PVPUSD) ensuring that children with special needs could access the classroom curriculum. While working for the district, she has trained teachers on how to successfully apply ABA in the classroom in order to reduce students’ challenging behaviors and have more access to academics. Mrs. Feldman has also run socials skills groups at PVPUSD to help facilitate integration amongst all children. Ms. Feldman has appeared on the TV show, “Los Niños en su Casa,” (the Spanish version of “A Place of Our Own,”) as the Autism Expert on KCET. She has taught BCBA courses at National University in Los Angeles and has presented at conferences such as CalABA.