Our Team

Our team at Melbourne Child Development is dedicated to providing the highest standard of services to children and their families. With 8 experienced and passionate clinicians, supported by a friendly and caring client services team, the combined vision for services at the Practice is to investigate, create means, and facilitate a child, adolescent or young adult’s ability to achieve their communication and learning potential.

Our clinicians work with children of all ages and backgrounds, and who have a broad range of language, communication, and health needs.

Each practitioner comes from a unique background of training and prior work, and has specific special interest areas and additional qualifications, resulting in a team that is diverse in its perspectives and therapeutic approaches. Working in close collaboration with one another, this diversity combines to create a dynamic and skillful group of practitioners sharing their knowledge and expertise.

Robyn is the founder and Principal of Robyn Stephen and Associates and has over 30 years clinical & management experience in Speech Pathology in public health, education, and independent practice. Her vision together with her team of 5 Speech Pathologists and her client services team is to provide the highest standard of Speech Pathology service to families to investigate, create means, and facilitate a child, adolescent or young adult’s ability to achieve their communication and learning potential

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Robyn Stephen

Principal Speech Pathologist

Robyn Stephen

Principal Speech Pathologist
Qualifications
  • Bachelor of Applied Science (Speech Pathology)
  • Trained provider and facilitator of the Secret Agent Society program
  • Cellfield Reading Intervention Provider
  • DIR Floortime Practitioner
  • Social Thinking Clinical Trainee
  • Certified provider of Hanen programs
Professional Associations

Certified Practising Speech Pathologist with Speech Pathology Australia

Media Appearances

Robyn was recently interviewed by Alan Brough (11/9/11) on ABC 774 (click here to listen to the interview), and was a talkback guest on Hilary Harper’s show (8/10/11), also on ABC 774.

Robyn is the founder and Principal of Robyn Stephen and Associates and has over 30 years clinical & management experience in Speech Pathology in public health, education, and independent practice. Her vision together with her team of 5 Speech Pathologists and her client services team is to provide the highest standard of Speech Pathology service to families to investigate, create means, and facilitate a child, adolescent or young adult’s ability to achieve their communication and learning potential.

Robyn has worked extensively with Speech Pathology Australia (SPA) educating and advocating for children’s communication and learning opportunities including recently writing and presenting a self study module on Screening, Assessment and Differential Diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorders; presenting an industry professional development workshop on A Developmental Approach to the Treatment of Children with Autism and their families, consultation on their response to the Autism State Plan; contribution to the SPA Autism Spectrum Disorder Advisory Group; and various contributions to media, forums and presentations to school groups, parent groups and colleagues.

Robyn Stephen & Associates is also a founding member of the Beyond Autism and Better Start Therapy consortiums: Early Intervention Provider Panel Members under the helping children with disabilities Federal Government initiative and are the lead Victorian licensee of the highly successful Cellfield program: a breakthrough computer intervention for reading disorders.

In May this year, Robyn was elected to the National Council of Speech Pathology Australia.



Genevieve Ackland is an experienced Speech Pathologist who worked for The Department of Education and Early Childhood Development within schools as well as several leading Private Practices in Melbourne before commencing with Robyn Stephen & Associates in 2014.

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Genevieve Ackland

Senior Speech Pathologist

Genevieve Ackland

Senior Speech Pathologist
Qualifications
  • Bachelor of Speech Pathology M.S.P.A.A
Professional Associations

Certified Practising Speech Pathologist with Speech Pathology Australia

Genevieve Ackland is an experienced Speech Pathologist who worked for The Department of Education and Early Childhood Development within schools as well as several leading Private Practices in Melbourne before commencing with Robyn Stephen & Associates in 2014.

Genevieve has worked with clients from preschool age to adolescents and she has a passion for working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. She has experience working in the areas of:

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder diagnosis and intervention
  • Delayed speech and language
  • Pragmatics/Social skills
  • Fluency (stuttering)
  • Voice
  • Childhood apraxia of speech ( CAS)
  • Auditory processing difficulties
  • Reading/learning disorders and;
  • Funding assessments/applications.

Genevieve has additional training in:

  • The Developmental Individual Relationship (DIR) – Floortime; a model of understanding the child as a whole and developing emotional engagement for the most effective learning
  • Lidcombe Program for Early stuttering
  • Hanen (It Takes 2 to Talk)
  • The Secret Agent Society Social skills program
  • Picture Exchange System training

Genevieve is a highly organised and motivated professional committed to providing excellence in speech pathology services. She enjoys undertaking any new opportunities and challenges and has the necessary skills to adapt to new situations. She is a strong team player and has the ability to work effectively in multidisciplinary team environments. Genevieve’s focus is very much client centered and she aims to make a positive difference to each client and their family.



Kate Down has extensive experience across a diverse range of settings, including work within public hospitals, community health, and in private practice. Kate joined Robyn Stephen & Associates in 2014, bringing with her a comprehensive work background and unique areas of special interest.

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Kate Down

Senior Speech Pathologist

Kate Down

Senior Speech Pathologist
Qualifications
  • Master of Speech Pathology
Professional Associations

Certified Practising Speech Pathologist (C.P.S.P) with Speech Pathology Australia

Kate Down has extensive experience across a diverse range of settings, including work within public hospitals, community health, and in private practice. Kate joined Robyn Stephen & Associates in 2014, bringing with her a comprehensive work background and unique areas of special interest.

Kate is passionate about working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), particularly young girls, and was the pioneer behind Robyn Stephen & Associates running the first and hugely successful ‘Girls Only’ Secret Agent Society group in 2016. Kate contributes her valuable expertise with ASD assessments and therapy, working with great dedication to help children and families with the process of diagnosis and early intervention.

Kate’s areas of special interest include:

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Infants
  • Literacy, particularly at a whole class level
  • Leading Social Skills groups
  • Facilitating parent coaching sessions

Kate has a warm and approachable nature, and brings a fun and friendly element to every area of her clinical work. Working with children across all ages, from 12 months old to adolescents, Kate assesses and provides intervention for speech, language, literacy, social skills, and stuttering, working in a range of kindergartens, primary schools and high schools across Melbourne.

With her current therapy approach including individual, dyad, and group sessions, Kate genuinely cares for each individual client and is always aiming to ensure that every child receives the most beneficial therapy arrangement to help them achieve their goals. To add, Kate works in close collaboration with parents and families to enable the smooth transition of Speech Pathology strategies from the clinical environment into the home and school life.

In addition to her ongoing clinical contributions, Kate continues to pursue her ongoing passion for research in the field of Speech and Language Development. Her works have been published in academic journals and presented at the Speech Pathology Australia National Conference in 2012 and 2016.

Kate has additional training in:

  • Trained provider and facilitator of the Secret Agent Society
  • Trained provider of Cellfield Reading Intervention program


Genevieve is a friendly and engaging clinician who adores working with children and providing evidence-based speech pathology services. She is passionate about empowering families to help their child in reaching their full potential.

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Genevieve Ward

Speech Pathologist

Genevieve Ward

Speech Pathologist
Qualifications
  • Bachelor of Health Science
Professional Associations

Certified Practising Speech Pathologist (C.P.S.P) with Speech Pathology Australia

Genevieve is a friendly and engaging clinician who adores working with children and providing evidence-based speech pathology services. She is passionate about empowering families to help their child in reaching their full potential. Genevieve strives to keep therapy fun whilst providing parents with education to enrich her sessions. Genevieve has recently, worked in another large private practice in the Northern suburbs where she worked closely with occupational therapists and joined with Melbourne Child Development in early 2018. Genevieve previously worked as an Early Childhood Educator for 5 years whilst undertaking her Masters Degree in Speech Pathology at La Trobe University.

Genevieve has additional training in a variety of speech pathology programs including:

  • The Hanen Centre: It Takes Two to Talk Program
  • The Lidcombe Program (stuttering treatment for young children)
  • PECS: Picture Exchange Communication System
  • Cued Articulation
  • SAS: Secret Agent Society

Genevieve’s areas of special interest include:

  • Late Talkers
  • Stuttering
  • Speech delays/disorders
  • Leading Social Skill groups

Genevieve hopes to expand her clinical knowledge within the feeding domain and assist infants and young children with feeding difficulties.

When Genevieve is not working she enjoys spending time with her family, creating delicious foods or exercising outdoors. She is known to others by her vibrant and warm personality and devotes her time to supporting families and nurturing children.



Liselle Grant joined the Robyn Stephen & Associates Speech Pathology team in 2013, bringing with her a rich and diverse background of over 20 years experience in business communications and management, including 8 years as a State Manager in the corporate sector.

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Liselle Grant

Senior Speech Pathologist

Liselle Grant

Senior Speech Pathologist
Qualifications
  • Masters of Speech Pathology
  • Masters of Communication
  • Masters of Teaching Primary and Secondary (current)
Professional Associations

Certified Practising Speech Pathologist with Speech Pathology Australia

Liselle Grant joined the Robyn Stephen & Associates Speech Pathology team in 2013, bringing with her a rich and diverse background of over 20 years experience in business communications and management, including 8 years as a State Manager in the corporate sector.

As a Speech Pathologist, Liselle initially worked at Eastern Health with adults in a sub-acute/rehabilitation setting, prior to moving into Paediatric Speech Pathology. Liselle delights in working with children of all ages on their speech, language, play, and pragmatic goals, and over the years, she has developed an enthusiastic special interest in assisting children with literacy development.

As an adjunct to her Masters in Speech Pathology and Masters in Communications, Liselle is currently completing her Masters in Teaching (Primary and Secondary), a pursuit that both complements and enhances her ongoing clinical Speech Pathology work. Liselle utilises a family-centred approach to therapy enabling parents/carers to incorporate strategies into functional everyday settings. By working in a multi-disciplinary partnership with families, medical and health professionals, and educators, Liselle enjoys maximising the outcomes for clients.

Liselle incorporates Social Thinking ® principles when addressing pragmatic goals and is has completed additional training in:

  • The Lidcome Program® – to assist young children who stutter
  • Both Spalding® and Thrass® – to assist phonological awareness and literacy development
  • Hanen® training – to develop clients’ play and language skills
  • The Prompt® – which can be used to treat speech production disorders.

Liselle finds tremendous satisfaction and joy in working with children and their families to support them in developing and achieving their potential.



Alexandra “Alex” Crea is an enthusiastic and passionate Speech Pathologist who joined the Melbourne Child Development (MCD) team in November 2017. Since starting, she has since hit the ground running taking on a broad and diverse caseload of children of all ages and capabilities.

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Alexandra Crea

Speech Pathologist

Alexandra Crea

Speech Pathologist
Qualifications
  • Bachelor of Health Science, Masters of Speech Pathology
Professional Associations
  • Member of Speech Pathology Australia

Alexandra “Alex” Crea is an enthusiastic and passionate Speech Pathologist who joined the Melbourne Child Development (MCD) team in November 2017. Since starting, she has since hit the ground running taking on a broad and diverse caseload of children of all ages and capabilities. Alex was thrilled for the opportunity to work with MCD, as she has always had a passion for working with children and their families, and aspires to help children reach their communication goals and full potential. Her caring and compassionate nature, combined with her lively energy result in a

As a recent graduate from La Trobe University, Alex incorporates the most recent evidence based approaches from her training into her clinical work and enjoys using contemporary therapeutic intervention techniques for all therapy and assessments. Being a caring and compassionate clinician, Alex has the ability to combine her excellent technical skills with her lively enthusiasm and love for kids to make all of her sessions both beneficial and enjoyable for the children that she works with.

Alex holds a Master’s degree in Speech Pathology, which has provided her with immersive experience working in a variety of clinical settings, including in community health and in education. Within this, she focused on speech and language, paediatric feeding, literacy and phonology with people of all ages. With her commitment to ongoing professional development, she continues to regularly attend training and workshops, some of which have included additional training in the fields of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), paediatric feeding, cued articulation, and the effects of early childhood trauma.

In October 2017, Alex was a contributor to the Speech Therapy Cambodia program, where she travelled to Cambodia to train local physical therapists in public hospitals to become competent in conducting swallowing screening and assessment, and in providing dysphagia management. While in Cambodia, Alex also spent time volunteering at CHOICE Cambodia, a non-for-profit school for children aged 3-13 year to learn English and IT, providing support for the greater community.

Alex’s special interest areas include:

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • Paediatric feeding


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Anna Woodburn

Speech Pathologist

Anna Woodburn

Speech Pathologist

Coming Soon



Holly is a friendly and enthusiastic Speech Pathologist who has recently joined the team at Melbourne Child Development. Holly is excited for the opportunity to work with Melbourne Child Development due to their dedication to family centred care, evidence based practice focus and friendly team environment.

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Holly White

Speech Pathologist

Holly White

Speech Pathologist
Qualifications
  • Bachelor of Health Science
  • Masters of Speech Pathology
Professional Associations

Certified Practising Speech Pathologist with Speech Pathology Australia

Holly is a friendly and enthusiastic Speech Pathologist who has recently joined the team at Melbourne Child Development. Holly is excited for the opportunity to work with Melbourne Child Development due to their dedication to family centred care, evidence based practice focus and friendly team environment.

Prior to starting at Melbourne Child Development, Holly worked at another private practice based in the South Eastern Suburbs. Here she provided both assessment and intervention across a large range of areas in Speech Pathology, working with adults and children with complex needs. It was in this role that she gained experience in speech sound disorders, fluency, developmental language delays, voice, and swallowing. She also worked closely with children with literacy delays and auditory processing disorders.

Holly is passionate about creating a fun and educational environment with her clients, whilst empowering children and their families to achieve their goals and to reach their potential. She strives to deliver family centred, evidence based practice and regularly attends professional development training and workshops to improve her knowledge, some of which include the Lidcombe Program (for stuttering) and additional training in Literacy.

When Holly is not working, she is coaching cheerleading. Through this role she plans, implements, and manages training programs and is able to empower children and adolescents to develop skills in a positive and safe environment.

 



Natalie Chorin is a passionate Speech Pathologist who has experience working in a range of settings including private practice, mainstream primary schools and an Early Childhood Intervention Service across Melbourne for a varied paediatric caseload. She has provided speech, language, play, pragmatic and interaction based therapy with children and their families. She believes that empowering parents and teachers to implement therapy as well as strategies in the child’s naturalistic settings are important. Natalie’s authentic and caring nature also helps build a strong sense of trust with her children and families. She strives to deliver fun and engaging sessions to support children to achieve their communication and developmental goals.

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Natalie Chorin

Speech Pathologist

Natalie Chorin

Speech Pathologist
Qualifications
  • Bachelor of Health Science
  • Master of Speech Pathology
Professional Associations

Certified Practising Speech Pathologist with Speech Pathology Australia

Natalie Chorin is a passionate Speech Pathologist who has experience working in a range of settings including private practice, mainstream primary schools and an Early Childhood Intervention Service across Melbourne for a varied paediatric caseload. She has provided speech, language, play, pragmatic and interaction based therapy with children and their families. She believes that empowering parents and teachers to implement therapy as well as strategies in the child’s naturalistic settings are important. Natalie’s authentic and caring nature also helps build a strong sense of trust with her children and families. She strives to deliver fun and engaging sessions to support children to achieve their communication and developmental goals.

Natalie’s areas of special interest include:

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Speech and Language delays/disorders
  • Literacy
  • Play based therapy

Natalie has additional training in the following:

  • Stages 1 & 2 of The Developmental Individual Relationship (DIR) – Floortime; a model of understanding the child as a whole and developing emotional engagement for the most effective learning.
  • The Lidcombe Program for Early stuttering
  • Keyword Sign
  • Implementing Social Thinking Concepts and Vocabulary
  • Love & Reilly: Phonological awareness made practical
  • Cued Articulation

Natalie continues to expand her clinical knowledge and application of therapeutic interventions across various areas by attending conferences, seminars and ongoing liaising with other professionals.

 



Georgie is a degree qualified clinical naturopath who considers it a great privilege to be able to work closely with individuals, families, and children to help them to improve their health. As a compassionate and conscientious practitioner, Georgie is committed to providing her clients with the highest quality of care in order to assist them to achieve their health goals, improve their quality of life, and address the underlying drivers of their illness and disease.

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Georgie Stephen

Naturopath

Georgie Stephen

Naturopath
Qualifications
  • Bachelor of Health Science in Naturopathy
Professional Associations
  • Naturopath & Herbalists Association of Australia (NHAA)

Georgie is a degree qualified clinical naturopath who considers it a great privilege to be able to work closely with individuals, families, and children to help them to improve their health. As a compassionate and conscientious practitioner, Georgie is committed to providing her clients with the highest quality of care in order to assist them to achieve their health goals, improve their quality of life, and address the underlying drivers of their illness and disease.

Georgie is a fierce advocate for personalised medicine, believing that there is no such thing as a ‘one size fits all’ approach to health care. Rather, she has observed that the best outcomes are achieved when treatment is tailor-made for each individual’s unique body, environment, and lifestyle. Georgie hopes to bring improved health and wellbeing to the clients she works with by supporting them to implement realistic and sustainable strategies that will result in the most meaningful and lasting changes.

In her clinical work, Georgie places a strong emphasis on evidence-based medicine, incorporating the most recent and reliable scientific research with what is known to be best clinical practice so that she can address each client’s individual health needs in the most clinically effective way. Underpinning Georgie’s work is a strong focus on collaborative care and she is always looking for opportunities to contribute her piece of the health puzzle towards the big picture by integrating and working closely with all health care providers within a person’s support team.

Georgie holds a Bachelor of Health Science in Naturopathy from the Southern School of Natural Therapies (SSNT) and was the recipient of the Award for Excellence In Clinic upon graduation in 2017. Further to this, Georgie has been selected for a number of notable internship programs where she has received additional mentoring and training in the areas of fertility and pregnancy care, and thyroid disease.

In her commitment to the evidence-based nature of contemporary naturopathic medicine, Georgie completed a research paper through SSNT in 2016 on the role that herbal medicine can play in neurodegenerative conditions and she continues to pursue her passion for research and writing alongside her clinical work.

Georgie enjoys working with children and their families, particularly children and adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), children with behavioural challenges, and picky eaters or problem feeders. She also has a special interest in working with individuals experiencing complex gastrointestinal or mental health conditions, and those with hormonal dysfunction, such as diabetes or insulin resistance, obesity, adrenal imbalance, or thyroid disorders.



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Bronwyn Meaker

Psychologist

Bronwyn Meaker

Psychologist

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Emily Peev

Practice Manager

Emily Peev

Practice Manager

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Natasha Kolivas

Receptionist

Natasha Kolivas

Receptionist

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Tara Wallace

Receptionist

Tara Wallace

Receptionist

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Susan Croft

Administration Assistant

Susan Croft

Administration Assistant

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