Our company, Reach for the Stars, LLC, is a private practice predominantly serving the pediatric population under the direction of Lisa Jiannetto-Surrusco, MA, CCC-SLP. The Staten Island location, formerly known as Speech and Language Therapy Associates of Staten Island, has served the Staten Island community since 2002. Expansion into New Jersey occurred in 2012. Our clinical team is compromised of highly qualified NYS/NJS licensed and ASHA certified speech-language pathologists with diverse training and clinical backgrounds in a variety of sub-specialty areas. This includes childhood articulation and language disorders, motor-speech disorders, voice and resonance disorders, fluency disorders and complex feeding disorders. We work collaboratively with many of the best clinics and practices within the NYC Metropolitan area. We pride ourselves on repeat referrals from some of the finest institutions throughout the city for post-surgical treatment for cleft palate repair, velo-pharyngeal insufficiency, and laryngeal pathology. We are also among the few practices to treat adult voice and resonance disorders (at our Staten Island office only).
Our therapists also possess training in some of the most sought after therapeutic approaches. This includes PROMPT to treat apraxia of speech, Orton-Gillingham and Wilson for literacy disorders, and SOS Feeding Approach to treating feeding disorders. In 2011, we launched the Find the Fun in Feeding Program to treat complex feeding disorders through the use of a systematic 12-week program. We offer our very own clinician-designed session activities customized to meet the individual needs of children needing a multi-sensory approach to treatment. Some of our therapists are also trained in techniques such as ABA and Verbal Behavior. Please note that not all providers are specialized in all areas, so when you contact us feel free to discuss your unique needs with our office.
Our Clinical Staff:
Lisa Jiannetto, MA, CCC-SLP, Feeding Specialist, Director
Sharon Eger, MS, CCC-SLP
Chelsae Dell Elba, MS, CCC-SLP, Feeding Specialist
Emily Peluso, MA, CCC-SLP
Megan Papandrea, MA, CCC-SLP, Clinical Lead
Johanna Chacon, MA, CCC-SLP
Isabelle Filiciello, MS, CCC-SLP
Shannon Smith, M.A., CF-SLP
Cristina de Oliveira M.A., CF-SLP
Office Manager/Case Manager: Toni Marie Edwards
Office Assistant: Kaitlyn Weber
The Perfect Playground (Staten Island location, for NYCDOE CPSE and CSE assignment)
We believe in providing the highest quality services possible, in a safe and nurturing environment, where each and every client is granted the opportunity to achieve his or her own personal best, no matter how difficult the challenge, thus ensuring a bright and successful future.
Lisa Jiannetto, MA, CCC-SLP, Director
Upon earning a Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology from New York University, Lisa Jiannetto-Surrusco, MA, CCC-SLP, began her career in 1999 working in NYC in a variety of pediatric settings. This included working as a home-based early intervention therapist, while also providing services for the NYC Department of Education within numerous elementary and middle schools. In 2002, she decided to fulfill her life-long dream of opening a private practice. She began as a sole practitioner, opening Speech and Language Therapy Associates of Staten Island. In response to the overwhelming high success rates of her clients and the outstanding reviews of satisfied parents, her practice grew. In order to keep up with the need, she eventually began hiring other highly qualified speech-language pathologists who shared her same vision. That vision of excellence and professionalism is the foundation on which the practice was built and the reason why it continues to thrive. In 2012, she decided to open Reach for the Stars in Downtown Cranford, NJ, since it is the town she calls home. Both offices now operate under the name Reach for the Stars, LLC.
Throughout her years of practice, Lisa (also affectionately known as "Miss Lisa" by her young clients) has gained the respect of many of her professional colleagues. In addition to the steady flow of referrals to her practice, she is regularly invited to speak at numerous professional workshops and graduate school seminars as a guest lecturer. She has also written a variety of local professional workshops throughout the NYC/NJ area pertaining to the treatment of complex feeding disorders in children and the delivery of high-quality clinical services within the school setting. She is also contracted throughout the City of New York to evaluate and devise treatment plans to assist with the management of feeding disorders during the school day for students throughout the five boroughs. She is thrilled to be an off-campus clinical supervisor for several top graduate programs in the area.
Lisa is overwhelmed with gratitude to both the Staten Island and Central NJ communities for embracing her practice. She is grateful to have the opportunity to assist all of the families that both practices serve. Her greatest satisfaction and joy are watching children grow, advance, and overcome.
Sharon Eger, MS, CCC-SLP
Sharon Eger, MS, CCC-SLP, is from Staten Island, New York, and practices in our Staten Island location. She received her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Speech-Language Pathology at St. John’s University, where she minored in Audiology. In 2010, she graduated from New York University, receiving a Master of Science degree in Communicative Sciences and Disorders. Sharon has her New York State licensure in Speech Language Pathology and earned her Professional Certificate as a Teacher of Students with Speech and Language Disabilities (TSSLD). She also holds a Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) from the American Speech Language Hearing Association (ASHA).
During her studies, Sharon had the opportunity to work with both children and adults in a variety of settings throughout New York City, including pediatric and adult rehabilitation centers, pre-school and school-based settings, as well as the NYU speech and hearing clinic.
Sharon has been a practicing SLP for 10 years. She splits her time between a 12-month school setting and Reach for the Stars, specializing in the treatment and evaluation of children with receptive/ expressive language impairments, articulation/ phonology disorders, developmental delays, fluency disorders, and emotional disturbances. She also has experience working with children with a variety of diagnoses including, but not limited to: learning difficulties, ASD, ADHD, ODD, CAPD, sensory processing delays, and subsequent feeding difficulties.
Sharon finds importance in taking a strength-based approach when treating clients. She is excited to be a part of the Reach for the Stars team, where she feels privileged to help all children grow and achieve success!
Chelsae Dell Elba, MS, CCC-SLP
Chelsae Dell Elba, MS, CCC-SLP, is a graduate of Seton Hall University and earned and Master of Science Degree in Communication Disorders. She is both NYS and NJS licensed, and is ASHA certified.
Chelsae's experiences include inpatient and outpatient pediatric speech-language-feeding services. She also has experience in the school setting working with multiple handicapped and medically fragile populations. She has a special interest in working with youngsters impacted by complex feeding difficulties. Working with children has always been her passion. To her, children are "a constant reminder of how to enjoy the simple things in life". Hearing a child "find his or her voice and watching a child with eating difficulties thrive", "means the world" to her. Chelsae considers herself lucky to have a career that she loves.
Additional training includes PROMPT and SOS Approach to Feeding.
Emily Peluso, MA, CCC-SLP
Emily Peluso, MA, CCC-SLP, is a NJS and ASHA certified Speech-Language Pathologist. She is a graduate of Towson University with a degree in Speech-Language Pathology. She continued onward to pursue a Master of Communication Disorders and Deafness from Kean University. She has experiences in both early intervention and school settings. She is PROMPT trained and proficient in PECS. Emily has a true passion to facilitate communication skills in all individuals. She loves working with children and showing them that communication is powerful. She live in Cranford with her husband and she is so is happy to serve her hometown community! She is so excited to be part of the Reach for the Stars team.
Megan Papandrea, MA, CCC-SLP
Megan Papandrea M.A., CCC-SLP is an ASHA certified NJS speech-language pathologist. She is a graduate of Kean University - School of Communication Disorder and Deafness with a Master of Arts Degree in Speech-Language Pathology. In addition to working at Reach for the Stars, Megan also works as a SLP in Woodbridge Township School District, where she won Support Staff Educator of the Year in 2019. Megan has nearly five years of experience delivering services in a public school, through home-based early intervention, and in a private practice setting. She is PROMPT trained. Megan has experience of working with children with a variety of disorders and classifications, but has a special interest in working with children with language-literacy disorders. She is passionate about speech-language pathology, and believes in forming a genuine relationship with each of her clients and their families. She is currently accepting new clients and is excited at the possibility of meeting your little one soon!
Johanna Chacon, MA, CCC-SLP
Johanna Chacon, MA, CCC-SLP is a New Jersey State licensed and ASHA certified speech-language pathologist, with nearly 5 years of clinical experience. Johanna graduated from Kean University where she received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Speech-Language-Hearing Sciences, and her Master of Arts Degree in Speech-Language Pathology.
Johanna has clinical experience working in a variety of pediatric settings including home-based early intervention, public schools ranging from preschool aged to high school aged, and private practice. She has worked with diverse populations and treated children with a wide range of communication difficulties, including: articulation/phonological disorders, fluency disorders, receptive and expressive language disorders, autism spectrum disorders, and social communication disorders. Johanna is a big proponent of using a play-based therapeutic approach in order to enhance and facilitate speech and language development in a fun and engaging environment. Johanna feels lucky to be in a field she loves and is thrilled to be part of the Reach for the Stars clinical team!
Isabelle Filiciello, MS, CCC-SLP
Isabelle Filiciello, MS, CCC-SLP, is a New Jersey State licensed and ASHA certified Speech Language Pathologist. She received her undergraduate degree in Speech Language Pathology and Audiology from Loyola University Maryland and her Master of Science Degree in Speech Language Pathology from Seton Hall University. She is a PROMPT trained therapist and received certification in Augmentative and Alternative Communication through Stockton University. As an experienced public school provider she treats a diverse population of students with fluency/articulation impairments, communication impairment, auditory processing deficits, social communication disorders, and receptive and expressive language deficits. In addition, she works closely with school team members and families to provide training and support regarding language and communication needs. Her passion for dance is exhibited through the Dragonfly Program at the Westfield Area YMCA where she is employed as a dance instructor for adults with special needs. Through this experience, she has found a passion for facilitating language through movement and play-based therapy which creates an engaging language-based environment that helps her friends find their voice. She hopes to facilitate similar programs for her pediatric patients at the practice, and is so excited to be a part of the Reach for the Stars team!
Shannon Smith, MA, CF-SLP
Shannon Smith has earned her Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology from Kean University and her Bachelor of Arts in Linguistics from Montclair State University.
Shannon has gained clinical experience working with both pediatric and adult populations across various settings including university-based clinics, public schools, outpatient hospitals, and private practice settings. She has evaluated and treated a variety of disorders including articulation, expressive/receptive language, fluency, pragmatics, aphasia, auditory processing disorder, and apraxia. Shannon also has experience working with individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder utilizing high and low-tech Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) devices. She has collaborated with occupational therapists, physical therapists, classroom teachers, and parents in order to help maximize student learning and patient progress. Her clinical practice revolves around evidence-based practice and individual-centered therapy to ensure optimal care for her clients.
Currently, Shannon holds her Speech-Language Specialist certification from the New Jersey Department of Education and is completing her Clinical Fellowship with Reach for the Stars. Shannon feels that it is vital for speech therapy to be a personal and engaging experience that puts the "fun" in functional. She is excited to embark on her career in speech-language pathology at Reach for the Stars 💜
Amanda Lowery MA, CF-SLP
Amanda Lowery, M.A. CF-SLP, TSSLD is from Staten Island, NY and practices in our Edison location. Amanda earned her Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees in speech-language pathology from St. John’s University. Amanda has gained clinical experience in evaluating and treating pediatric and adult populations across a variety of settings including university-based clinics, hospitals, private practices, and in an autism program in a public school. She has experience treating and evaluating a range of diagnoses and disorders, including autism spectrum disorder, receptive/expressive language disorders, articulation/phonological disorders, fluency disorders, pragmatics, aphasia, traumatic brain injuries (TBI), and dysphasia. Amanda also has experience using Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) devices. She has collaborated with a variety of professionals including occupational and physical therapists, classroom teachers, paraprofessionals, BCBAs, and physicians to monitor student and patient progress and help maximize their success. Amanda has special interests in autism spectrum disorder, AAC devices, and pediatric feeding/swallowing disorders. She has a passion for helping all individuals find their voice and believes in forming relationships with each of her clients to help maximize their success in therapy. Her greatest satisfaction is watching her clients grow and reach their goals.
Currently, Amanda splits her time between a school setting in Staten Island, NY and Reach for the Stars. She earned her Certificate as a Teacher of Students with Speech and Language Disabilities (TSSLD) and is completing her clinical fellowship. Amanda is excited to be part of the Reach for the Stars team while helping children achieve success!
Cristina de Oliveira MA CF-SLP, TSSLD
Cristina de Oliveira earned her Master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology at Kean University’s Nathan Weiss Graduate School. Her undergraduate studies were in Psychology and Spanish, wherein she had the opportunity to take part in research learning more about the psychology of language itself. Cristina is bilingual, and able to speak proficiently in Spanish and at the conversational level in Portuguese (Brazilian).
Cristina’s clinical experience focused on the evaluation and treatment of both pediatric and adult clients in a university-based clinic, a private practice, and in an autism program in the public school setting. She has experience treating children with a range of diagnoses such as childhood apraxia of speech (CAS), language disorders, articulation/phonological disorders, and fluency disorders.
Her passion is empowering children to become better communicators in their day to day life. She finds joy in forming a bond with her clients. Her goal is to create a safe and fun therapeutic environment that her clients enjoy returning to week after week.
When she is not working, Cristina enjoys reading, traveling and spending time with family.
Toni Edwards, Office Manager/Case Manager
Toni Edwards has been a part of the Reach for the Stars team since the inception of the practice here in Cranford. She began her career in medical billing and office administration working at Speech and Language Therapy Associates, the original practice in Staten Island. She feels grateful to get to know the parents so well, checking on their benefits, assisting with the preauthorization process, and scheduling. As a parent of three boys herself, she relates especially well to parents easing their concerns as they get through the initial process. She is so happy to be part of the Reach for the Stars "family" as she calls it!
Kaitlyn Weber, Office Assistant
Kaitlyn Weber is an enthusiastic, aspiring speech language-pathologist. Kaitlyn graduated from Montclair State University with a bachelors degree in Family Science Human Development with a focus in Child Advocacy. Post graduation, Kaitlyn has completed the Speech-Language Pathology Pre-Professional Program at Kean University. Kaitlyn has experience with children of varying ages and abilities in school, camp, and home settings. She is thrilled to be a part of the Reach for the Stars team/office staff.