STEP Therapy


CEO-Reginal Director

Mariah Runkle, MS, OTR/L

Mariah is a native to Colorado, born and raised.  She has over 12 years of health care experience, 9 years of therapy experience and has been practicing as a pediatric occupational therapist for the past 7 years.  Mariah loves serving our community and has truly found her passion for serving  children with special needs.  After graduating from The University of Northern Colorado with her Bachelors of Arts in Psychology in 2007, she pursued her Masters in Occupational Therapy at Touro University, Nevada.  She graduated as an Occupational Therapist in 2012 and began her journey as a pediatric therapist.


In 2015, Mariah had the opportunity to take on her mentor’s business.  Mariah created STEP Therapy Pediatrics, to continue serving the Denver Metro Area and surrounding cities.  Mariah has experience in working with children with Autism, Downs Syndrome, Sensory Processing Disorder, Developmental Delay, Oppositional Defiance Disorders, Handwriting Difficulties and much more.  She truly believes that our children teach us the most about the meaning of life and she knows that STEP Therapy Pediatrics serves the BEST families in town!

Meet our Speech Language Pathologists...

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Clinical Director & Pediatric Speech Language Pathologist

Brianna Calvin, MS, CCC-SLP

Bri relocated to Denver, CO from Memphis, TN. She earned her Master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology from Tennessee State University in 2015 and is a member of the American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA). Bri has had the pleasure of working with children of all ages with a variety of disorders since her journey as an SLP began. She especially loves providing early intervention and is passionate about parent education and collaboration. In her free time, Bri enjoys hiking, reading, and spending time with family and friends.


Pediatric Speech Language Pathologist

Grace Hildensperger, MS, CCC-SLP

Grace is new to the Denver area, having moved here from Chicago, Illinois where she completed her masters degree in Speech, Language, & Learning (SLP) at Northwestern University. Grace is originally from Michigan and earned her B.A. in linguistics at The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. While Grace loves helping children improve their speech and language skills, she also enjoys working with adults to improve their speech, language, voice, and swallowing skills. Grace is interested in many topics within the field of speech-language pathology, and has taken a special interest in treating stuttering/fluency and voice disorders among both the pediatric and adult populations. When Grace is not having a blast with her kiddo patients, she is hiking in the mountains, practicing yoga, or spending time with her niece. Grace is passionate about helping young children and adults alike find their voice and communicate with loved ones more effectively.

Meet our Occupational Therapists & Assistants...

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Clinic Manager (Aurora) & Pediatric Occupational Therapy Practitioner

Chelsey Callif, COTA/L

Chelsey was born in raised in Aurora, CO and received her Associates degree in Occupational Therapy from Pima Medical Institute Denver. Chelsey has a background in Early Childhood Education where being a former preschool teacher, she realized her passion for helping children with special needs. Her goal is to help encourage and support every child’s development to improve their overall quality of life. When she is not in the clinic, Chelsey is enjoying quality time with her family and loves hanging out on the couch watching movies with her husband and her two dogs.


Pediatric Occupational Therapy Practitioner

Ashlyn Kennedy, MOT, OTR/L

Ashlyn relocated from Memphis, TN to Denver, CO. She earned her Master's Degree in Occupational Therapy from The University of Tennessee Health Science Center in 2020. Ashlyn has received experience working in OT with all ages throughout her fieldwork. She found her interest in working with pediatrics during her school-based rotation. She loves working with kids and getting to collaborate with the families. In her spare time, Ashlyn and her husband love golfing, hiking, and swimming! 

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Pediatric Occupational Therapy Practitioner

Julie Honan, MS, OTR/L

Julie graduated from Boston University in 1996 with a Master’s of Science Degree in Occupational Therapy. Julie has 22 years of Occupational Therapy experience. She has been working in the pediatric field since 2017, and has fallen in love with working with children. Previously she worked in the field of adult and older adults. She was also a faculty member at Touro University - Nevada in the Occupational Therapy program from 2006-2012. She lives in Aurora with her husband and son. She enjoys hiking, volunteering at her son’s school, and spending time with her family.


Pediatric Occupational Therapy Practitioner

Maria Marquez, MS, OTR/L

Maria graduated from Colorado State University with a Master’s in Occupational Therapy. She previously obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Colorado at Denver. She is fluent in both English and Spanish and enjoys collaborating with families and children to help improve their quality of life. Maria is constantly reading about sensory integration principles and evidence-based interventions to best meet the needs of the families she works with. In her free time, Maria loves to spend time with family, friends, and her dog, Timon.

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Pediatric Occupational Therapy Practitioner

Jackie Nitta, COTA/L

Jackie was born and raised in upstate NY and received her Associates degree in Occupational Therapy at Casper College in Wyoming.  She had motivation from an early age to go into the OT field. Jackie has a brother with special needs and as she observed him receive PT, OT, and Speech services, she naturally began assisting in his in-home therapy. Her passion is helping kids and their families work to overcome obstacles (while having some fun and silliness) and live the most meaningful, joyful, and successful lives. When she's not in the clinic, Jackie is busy raising her two kids, cooking and baking, shopping, and maybe indulging in too many movies on the couch with her husband.


Pediatric Occupational Therapy Practitioner

Melissa Glenbowski, COTA/L

Melissa moved to the Denver area from New Jersey 3 years ago. She has received her Bachelor of Health Science from Stockton University, and continued her education at Pima Medical Institute, receiving her Associate's Degree in occupational therapy studies. She loves working with children, helping to aid in their success and independence with everyday life tasks as well as support their families. Melissa's inspiration to join this profession is because she has a younger sister who has Down syndrome which has helped her to cultivate great empathy and patience, and has allowed her to gain much experience working with children with disabilities. Melissa's hobbies include hiking with her husky, camping, snowboarding, and gymnastics.

Meet our Physical Therapists & Assistants...


Pediatric Physical Therapy Practitioner

Emily Quinn, PT, DPT

Emily grew up in the Denver metro area of Colorado as a competitive gymnast. It is through her
involvement coaching gymnastics as a teenager, as well as her involvement as a camp counselor for
Heritage Camps for Adoptive Families that she gained her passion for working with kids and their
families. Emily obtained both her B.S. in Clinical Health Studies and DPT degrees from Ithaca College.
She has experience working in a variety of settings, including hospital-based, both in- and outpatient,
and school-based. She loves working with children with a variety of diagnoses, including but not limited
to those with chronic pain, those who have had oncological diagnoses, and children with developmental
disabilities. Emily has a passion for diversity, equity, inclusion, and social justice work, and she is part of
the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA), including being a member of the APTA Pediatrics
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee. In her free time, Emily enjoys rock climbing, hiking, working
out, and spending time with family and friends.

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Pediatric Physical Therapy Practitioner

Paula McBride, PT, MSPT

Paula earned her Master’s of Science degree in Physical Therapy from the University of Kansas and has spent the past 27 years of her career specializing in geriatrics. Her areas of expertise include neurological, orthopedic, cardiac rehab and general medical disorders and advocating for the elderly population.  In 2018, Paula decided to pursue her passion of working with children and shifted her career focus to provide pediatric physical therapy and volunteer at STEP Therapy Pediatrics throughout the year.

Meet our Administrative Team...

Jeanne McBride - Billing/Finance Project

Billing/Finance Project Manager

Jeanne McBride

Send Some             to your
     Favorite                STEP Team Members


"The Therapists are caring, thoughtful, dedicated, patient and kind." 

"We love STEP Therapy!"​

"We have seen wonderful improvements across the board through STEP Therapy."

"Wonderful therapists and staff. What a difference they made in our lives."