STC employs a dynamic and compassionate team with many years of professional and personal experience working with individuals with I/DD, and a drive to reduce sexual abuse.
In addition to individual certifications & degrees in a variety of related disciplines, all STC staff complete ongoing continuing education & training in accordance with the state of California's requirements for Sex Educators.
Amy J. Machado, M.A., BCBA (She/Her)
Amy has worked with individuals with Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities for over 20 years in home, school, community, and clinical settings. She earned bachelor’s degrees in Health and Education, and a master’s degree in Teaching with an emphasis in Special Education from Belmont University. Additionally, she earned a post graduate certification in Behavior Analysis from Florida Institute of Technology.
Amy has extensive experience working directly with individuals with disabilities of all ages and has spent the latter part of her career creating innovative programs to assist young adults with the transition into adulthood. Amy has authored the Rooted In Connection curricula that teaches comprehensive sex education with an emphasis on relationships, social boundaries, assertiveness, and abuse prevention for individuals with disabilities of all ages (Youth through Adult).
Amy's drive to reduce sexual exploitation stems from her direct work with countless individuals and families who have shared their personal stories of exposure, assault and sexual abuse. Throughout her career as a Behavior Analyst, she has worked with many individuals and families seeking information about relationships and how to connect with others. From their experiences and their desire for social autonomy, she is dedicated to making STC an inclusive place for people with disabilities to learn invaluable information about connecting with others appropriately and safely.
In addition to handling STC operations, Amy conducts trainings and workshops throughout the state for parents and professionals on social-sexual topics including abuse awareness and risk reduction through education.
Rachel Schlesinger, M.S., CRC (She/Her)
Educational Consultant/Rehabilitation Counselor
Rachel Schlesinger is an Educational Consultant and Rehabilitation Counselor for SEEDS Therapy Center. She earned her master's degree in Rehabilitation Counseling at San Diego State University. She teaches university-level courses on the topic of Disability and Society. Rachel joined the STC team in 2019 bringing nearly a decade of professional experience in disability advocacy and aims to bring her passion for disability awareness and advocacy to the clients, family, and staff of SEEDS Therapy Center.
Gianna Cursi, B.S., BCaBA (She/Her)
Gianna is an Educational Consultant and Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst (BCaBA) for SEEDS Therapy Center. She attended the University of California, San Diego where she earned a Bachelor's of Science in Human Biology. Gianna has worked with children and young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders and I/DD for over 7 years. Gianna brought her behavioral expertise when she joined the STC team in 2019 and looks forward to expanding her experience as she supports, learns from, and grows with the clients and families at STC.