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Our Team.

Get to know our team of experts! Devoted to inclusivity and always willing to offer support to individuals of all needs. Read their bios to learn more about them. 

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Dave Buck, PhD
Executive Director
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Amber Doolittle
Assistant Director
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Michele Suit
Outpatient Clinic Receptionist

Dave Buck has been with the CAC since it started in 2009 when he helped coordinate parents and clinicians put on workshop series, conferences, parents-night-out, and other programs. The CAC eventually became a nonprofit and Dave became its executive director. Dave feels lucky that he gets to work with and befriend hundreds of parents and autistic individuals during these years. He's also keen on collaborating with the other disability organizations and advocates in our community whenever possible. He serves on the advisory committee for the Chattanooga Nonprofit Alliance and Chattanooga Area Employment Consortium, is a board member of the Ochs Center, and participates in several other collaborative groups.

Amber Doolittle has worked at the CAC since getting her degree in Psychology in 2017. She helps manage the non-clinical aspects of the organization, coordinates events like the Chattanooga Autism Conference and Autism Celebration Walk, and helps folks connect with autism-related resources. On the side, she enjoys teaching piano lessons to neurodivergent students through the Ascending Scales program. Amber serves on the leadership committee of Emerging Leaders Chattanooga, and is a member of the Chattanooga Nonprofit Alliance, Tennessee Disability Coalition, and the STAR Center advisory board. Outside of work, you can find her running the TN Riverwalk, attempting to swim, spending time with her nephew, or reading one of approximately 7 books she’s in the middle of at any given time…

Hello! My name is Michelle and I am passionate about people! I love to learn about others, laugh and make genuine connections. I am a mother, a grandmother and an animal lover. I can't wait to meet you! 

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Alyce Benson, LCSW
Clinic Director
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Anna Straussberger BCBA
Bridges Clinic Director
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Abby Horsley
Bridges Office Manager

Alyce Benson, LCSW, MS, is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over 25 years experience working with adults, adolescents, and children with developmental disabilities and co-occurring mental health disorders.  She received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in social work from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Alyce specializes in working with individuals who present complex behavioral, medical, and psychological issues, and has extensive experience working in numerous community-based settings. In 2014, Alyce was awarded Social Worker of the Year for the state of Tennessee. Outside of work, Alyce enjoys spending time with her family and friends, traveling, live music, and indulging in the restaurant scene around town. 

Anna is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst and Licensed Behavior Analyst in the state of Tennessee. She is the director of the Bridges ABA program at the Chattanooga Autism Center and has been in this role since 2016. Previously she worked with autistic children, adolescents, and adults in residential, school, and outpatient settings for eight years. She is passionate about delivering trauma-informed, client-centered ABA in a way that is supportive for the children and families she serves. 

 

Anna enjoys reading, exercising, doing puzzles, and spending time at the lake with her family and friends.

My name is Abby and I am the Bridges Clinic Office Manager. I have lived in Chattanooga for the past 10 years! I love spending time outside, reading a lot of books and spending time with family and friends. I have 1 dog and 2 cats!

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Claire Dimmer
Bridges Training and Development Coordinator
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Chapel Mason OTD
OT Program Director
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Kennedi Bryant MT-BC
Music Therapy Program Director

Hello my name is Claire Dimmer! I have been working at the Chattanooga Autism Center since 2016. A fun fact is I was the first behavior tech for the ABA clinic at the CAC in 2016 and now I am the Training and Development Coordinator. I like to spend my time off work watching movies and TV shows, trying out different coffee shops, and traveling with my husband.

My name is Chapel and I am the occupational therapist at both our Bridges clinic and the CAC! I began working with autistic individuals about seven years ago and graduated with my OTD from UTC in 2022. My main role is working with the CAC to establish our OT program that will serve the autism community in Chattanooga through play-based and evidence-based practice. In my free time, you can find me reading a good book in the sun, trying out a new recipe, going on a walk or bike ride with my husband, or spending time with my family and friends!

Kennedi Bryant, originally from Manchester, TN, has called Chattanooga her home since 2016. She earned her Bachelor's of Music with a Concentration in Music Therapy from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and since has become a Board Certified Music Therapist. Her music therapy clinical experiences include providing services to older adults with Parkinson's

disease or dementia, adolescents with various special needs, adults with IDD or Mental Health Disorders and Substance Use Disorders, and children with ASD and varying diagnoses. She enjoys working at the Chattanooga Autism Center and helping the Ascending Scales Music Program grow.

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