Learn a bit more about the unique, creative individuals available to help patients and families.
Kelly Boyd, M.S., CCLS Child Life Specialist
Kelly M. Boyd, MS, CCLS graduated from the University of Georgia and received her bachelor’s degree in Family and Consumer Sciences with an emphasis in Human Development and Family Science. She holds also holds a Master’s degree from Texas State University in Family and Child Studies with a concentration in Child Life. Kelly completed her practicum and internship experiences at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital before beginning fulltime work on our Pediatric Medicine unit. Her professional focuses are working with children who have ADHD, Autism, and Asperger’s.
Carli Fischer, M.S., CCLS Child Life Specialist
Carli Fischer is a certified Child Life specialist at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital. She graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science in Family, Youth and Community Sciences, followed by a master’s degree in Child Life from the University of Georgia. Fischer completed her child life internship at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital before transitioning to the per diem role.
Leah T. Frohnerath, M.S., CCLS, CEIM Child Life Specialist
Leah T. Frohnerath, MS, CCLS is a Certified Child Life Specialist. She is a graduate of Florida State University with a bachelor’s degree in Family and Consumer Sciences and received her Master’s in Healthcare Administration from University of St. Francis. Since completing her internship at St. Louis Children’s Hospital in 1998 and starting her career at St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital, Leah has provided Child Life Services across all diagnosis groups and in many areas. Leah joined Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in February of 2013. She is a co-coordinator for the Pet Therapy Program which boasts 25 dog teams and 1 miniature horse. Leah primarily provides Child Life Services to the Cancer and Blood Disorder In-patient unit. Her professional focus is on facilitating a collaborative relationship between the child and family and the medical team and empowering children through their medical journey.
Katie E. Grabowski, M.S., CCLS Child Life Specialist
Katie Grabowski, MS, CCLS has been with the child life department since 2013 and serves as an inpatient child life specialist. She spends much of her time in the neurosciences/surgical unit (7N), but also provides additional coverage to the inpatient team, particularly the general pediatrics unit. Katie has a Bachelor's degree in Social Science Education from the University of Central Florida as well as a master's degree in Family and Consumer Sciences with a specialization in Child Life from Illinois State University. Katie is an Item Writer on the Association of Child Life Professionals’ Child Life Certifying Committee and serves as a mentor in the field. She also has previous experience assisting in conference planning for the Florida Association of Child Life Professionals.
Kelli Haley, BS, CCLS Child Life Specialist
Kelli Haley is a Child Life specialist in Dialysis and Pediatric Medicine at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital. Haley graduated from Auburn University with a Bachelor’s degree in Human Development and Family Studies with a concentration in Child Life and a minor in Psychology. She completed her internship at the Children’s of Alabama.
Catherine "Kat" Leibbrandt, B.A., B.S. CCLS Child Life Specialist
Kat Leibbrandt is a Child Life specialist in Pediatric Medicine at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital. She is a graduate of the University of South Florida in Tampa and earned degrees in Health Sciences and Health Communications. She completed her practicum at St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa, and her internship at Tampa General Hospital. Leibbrandt also serves as a co-facilitator for the Teen Advisory Council.
Katie Lierz, MS, CCLS Child Life Specialist
Kate holds a Bachelors’ Degree in Early Childhood Education from Kansas State University as well as a Master’s in Child Life from the University of La Verne. She completed her internship at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital and then immediately transitioned to the Per Diem role at our facility.
Sara Sefret, B.A., C.C.L.S. Child Life Specialist
Sara Sefret is a Child Life specialist at Johns Hopkins all Children’s Hospital. Sefret earned her bachelor’s degree in Child Development Psychology with a concentration in Family Studies from the University of Maryland. She completed her practicum at Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C., followed by an internship at Palm Beach Children’s Hospital in West Palm Beach, Florida before joining the team in a per diem role.
Carol B. Dahlquist, B.A., CCLS Child Life Specialist
Carol B. Dahlquist, BA, CCLS began her career in the field of child life in 1997. She has a B.A. in Special Education from Florida Atlantic University and has previously taught in public schools in Florida and North Carolina. Throughout her career, Carol has served on the executive board of the Florida Association of Child Life Professionals and assisted with conference planning. She is the Child Life Volunteer Coordinator and works primarily in the outpatient setting in the Pre-Operational Unit.
Dara Jackson, B.S., CCLS Child Life Specialist
Dara Jackson, BS, CCLS is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh. She has worked at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital since September 2008. She has 15 + years in the field of Child Life. The majority of that has been working with the hematology/oncology population. She is the Child Life practicum coordinator and works primarily in the hematology/oncology clinic and infusion center. Dara is active on several committees with the Association of Child Life Professionals.
Renee Savic, B.S., CCLS Child Life Specialist
Renee Savic, BS, CCLS graduated from Florida State University and received her Bachelor’s degree in Family, Child, and Consumer Sciences. Before joining the staff at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in 2012, Renee worked at Shriners Hospitals for Children in Tampa for 18 years where she was the child life coordinator. Renee has served as President of the Florida Association of Child Life Professionals and on various committees for the Association of Child Life Professionals. Renee will receive the Mary Barkey Clinical Excellence Award for 2018. This award is presented to an individual child life specialist who has demonstrated exemplary child life care and a high level of clinical skill.
Rayna Tanis, B.S., CCLS Child Life Specialist
Rayna is a child life specialist in the Emergency Center at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital. She is a graduate of Ball State University and received her Bachelor’s degree in Child Life and Family Studies in 2013. Rayna completed her child life internship at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital and became certified in child life in March of 2014.
Alona Battaglio, B.A. Child Life Tech
Alona Battaglio, BA is a Connecticut native with a B.A. degree in psychology. Prior to joining the Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital team, Alona worked as an early childhood educator as well as a supportive counselor for the geriatric population. She considers her work with children to be her true passion and focuses her energy cofacilitating RJ’s Activity Center offering normative and special event experiences to children and their families. Alona is also the Child Life Volunteer Coordinator.
Nicole McCain, AS Child Life Tech
Nicole McCain, AS, joined the Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital team in July 2015. She has 5+ years experience working in the early childhood educational environment in the role of an Assistant Director. She spends her days cofacilitating RJ’s Activity Center offering normative and special event experiences to children and their families. Nicole also is facilitator of the Pet Therapy program and has an AS in Heath Administration from the University of Phoenix.
Rita Scott Child Life Tech
Rita Scott is a Child Life tech in RJ’s Activity Center. She joined the hospital staff in October 2018.Before joining the Child Life team, Scott worked as a patient service representative in the Johns Hopkins All Children’s Sleep Clinic.
Hannah Skiff Child Life Tech
Hannah Skiff is a Child Life tech in RJ’s Activity Center. She joined the hospital staff in September 2019. Before joining the hospital, Skiff worked with children and young adults in an education and public library setting. Skiff earned her Bachelor of Arts in English.
Tasha Ellis Child Life Aid
Tasha Ellis is a Child Life Aide who focuses on patient safety through ensuring the sanitation of departmental toys and providing memorable play experiences in RJ’s Activity Center. She began her Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital Career in the Environmental Services department in 1999 and after two years, transitioned to the Child Life Team.
Elijah Shannon Child Life Aid
Elijah Shannon is a Child Life Aide who focuses on keeping patients and families safe through sanitizing toys in the playrooms of our facility. He is a Florida native and has been working with the department since 2015.