OUR TEACHERS

Learn and grow from an experienced team of therapists

DONNA PERUZZARO

Executive Director
Speech Language Pathologist / MA CCC SLP

Serving as Executive Director, Donna is our newest member of the REACH Program team bringing over 20 years of varied experience treating Speech and Language Disorders. Donna earned her B.A. and M.A. from San Jose State University in Communication Disorders and Sciences and possesses extensive work experience in the hospital setting. While at Stanford Hospital, Donna worked as an Acute Care Therapist serving high risk patients and co-led the monthly Stroke Support Group. Prior to working at Stanford, Donna served as the Senior Speech Pathologist on the Brain Injury & Rehabilitation Unit at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center. She also enjoyed earlier work experiences at Good Samaritan Hospital, San Jose Medical Center and mentoring/teaching students through San Jose State University’s Speech and Language Disorders program.

Donna is passionate about helping her students communicate and function in the most skillful way possible. She has developed a variety of targeted resources, exercises, games and therapies to meet the individual needs of her clients. She especially enjoys working at the REACH Program because of the encouragement and support she witnesses among the students.

When she is not working with clients, Donna enjoys spending time with her husband and son, volunteering with her son’s Boy Scout troop and spending time outdoors walking, hiking, gardening and boating.

BRENDA BROWN

Physical Therapist / MPT

Brenda has worked as a physical therapist for 12 years at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center in many specialized areas. Brenda’s focus and passion was in neuro rehabilitation, both inpatient and outpatient. She has had the opportunity to work at REACH since 2018. “Students and therapists work as a team to encourage and challenge one another to reach their highest potential.”

“REACH is truly a hidden gem.”

Brenda’s time outside of REACH is filled with family, homeschooling, biking, swimming, gardening, photography, crafting, and traveling.

PATRICIA BARTZ

Occupational Therapist / M.S. OTR / L

Patricia received her Master’s Degree in Occupational Therapy from Boston University in 1986, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from the University of California at Berkeley in 1981.  She has been practicing occupational therapy for 34 years, and loves her work. She utilizes the Model of Human Occupation as her theoretical framework with her clients. She has worked at The Reach Program for a total of 4 years. She has also enjoyed working in home health for over 20 years.

Her area of expertise is with the geriatric population and stroke recovery with an emphasis on promoting health through meaningful activities.

Patricia is married to her husband of 32 years, with two grown children. In her free time, she is an avid hiker, and enjoys writing, reading and knitting.

MAUREEN MATTHEWS

Occupational Therapist / OTL

Maureen is a San Jose State University (SJSU) Occupational Therapy graduate. She began her career at Kaisar Vallejo Rehab, transitioned to home health care and then to Santa Clara Valley Medical Center. She has worked as a therapist, a supervisor, and a manager. In 2012, she retired as the program manager over the brain injury and general rehab program and outpatient neurological programs at SCVMC in order to return to patient care. Maureen has authored several chapters in Occupational Therapy texts on cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation. She has been working at REACH on Tuesday/Thursday since 2014 and also works as a therapist at Good Samaritan Hospital on a per diem basis. Many SJSU Occupational Therapy students have enjoyed learning about stroke survivors by doing their fieldwork at REACH under Maureen’s supervision.

Maureen has been married to Bob Matthews for 37 years. A truly great guy! They enjoy time with their adult children and faithful dog, Harley. Maureen is an avid swimmer, knitter, bridge player and reader. Maureen says, “I love the REACH program because it represents the best of long term care, where individuals find a community of friends who are all striving to improve after stroke.”

NICOLE GOODWIN

Physical Therapist

Nicole has been a Physical Therapist since completing her master’s degree at the University of Southern California in 1996. She began her career in the outpatient setting, specializing in musculoskeletal disorders with advanced degrees in orthopedics and manual therapy.

Nicole’s emphasis gradually shifted to geriatrics and she has been treating patients with various neurologic and systemic disorders since 2008. Nicole’s favorite thing about REACH is the community feel. “The therapists and students are super supportive of one another with every challenge and success!”

When not at REACH, Nicole enjoys providing physical therapy in the home health setting. She also keeps busy with her husband, two kids and active puppy! Nicole enjoys hiking and exploring new things near and far.

CONTACT US

Cubberley Community Center
Building P
4000 Middlefield Road,
Palo Alto
Phone: (650)-690-5615    
reachprogrampaloalto@gmail.com

SUPPORT

Help enable us to provide our services; 100% of any donation goes to REACH.

Make checks payable to
"Reach Program."

Send to:
REACH Program
4000 Middlefield Road,
Palo Alto CA 94303

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