Dr. Laleh Askari PT, DPT
Doctor of Physical Therapy
Director of Rehabilitation Services
Dr. Askari graduated from Texas Woman’s University in 2005 and went on to receive her doctorate degree from the same university in 2008. She has practiced and managed rehabilitation in numerous settings including hospitals, nursing homes, pediatric outpatient clinics and private practice. Dr. Askari has also been a clinical instructor for several physical therapy programs since 2007.
Dr. Askari uses the latest technology and evidence-based treatments that are individualized based on patients’ symptoms and evaluation findings. Her treatment philosophy focuses on the constant communication with her patients and referring physicians. The patient’s goals, preferred activity level, and prior experiences shape the treatment plan and help to achieve the quickest recovery. Patient education and adherence to a home exercise program are necessary to receive the full benefit of the treatment. Close communication with the referring physician also ensures a comprehensive and effective treatment plan.
Shifra Fernandes, PT
Shifra Fernandes graduated from Manipal University, India in 2012 with a degree in Physical Therapy. Thereafter, she went on to work in an outpatient set up and private clinic for two and a half years gaining experience in orthopedic, adult neuro rehabilitation, community based rehabilitation and geriatric care. In August 2014, she moved to Austin to pursue a Master’s Degree in Kinesiology at the University of Texas, Austin, graduating in May 2016. At the same time, she received her Licensure in Physical Therapy with the Texas State Board of Physical Therapy Examiners. She believes in evidence based practice, clinical reasoning and hands on practice, personalizing treatment plans to best suit every patient’s goals. Establishing an effective communication with her patients and educating them is of prime importance to her. She is compassionate and dedicated towards patient rehabilitation.
Jordan Gauthier, DPT
Dr. Jordan Gauthier received her Doctorate of Physical Therapy from The University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences in 2017. Before attending physical therapy school, she obtained her bachelor’s degree in Kinesiotherapy from The University of Southern Mississippi where she was a member of the NCAA Division 1 Women’s Soccer Team. Throughout her education, she gained experience in orthopedic and pediatric settings which has aided in her treatment of musculoskeletal and neurological conditions.
Her want to become a physical therapist stemmed from her 16 year career in athletics and multiple injuries sustained while playing various sports. In the future, she hopes to obtain a specialization in Sports Physical Therapy in order to help injured athletes return to their respective sports. When she is not treating patients in the clinic, Jordan enjoys participation in and watching of sports, being outdoors, and spending time with family.
Megan Kalinich, DPT
Megan Kalinich, Licensed Physical Therapist, obtained her Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Creighton University . Before attending physical therapy school, she attained her Bachelor’s Degree in Biology and Society from Arizona State University – Barrett, the Honors College. Her Doctor of Physical Therapy education provided excellent clinical experience in a variety of settings, including pelvic floor health, outpatient rehabilitation, and pediatric therapy care. She has a passion for a holistic treatment approach: considering the patient as a whole person rather than simply as a compilation of individual symptoms. She strives to always utilize evidence-based interventions and is dedicated to achieving open communication between practitioner, patient, and all who may be involved in the patient’s care in order to develop a relationship aimed at reaching the patient’s goals.
Originally from northern Arizona, Megan has recently moved to Austin as her husband is pursuing his PhD in Biomedical Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. In her free time, Megan loves being physically active, whether that is at the gym or hiking outside. She is passionate about healthy food and cooking and enjoys finding all the restaurant gems that Austin has to offer.
Kurt James Klobassa, DPT
Dr. Kurt James Klobassa received his Doctorate of Physical Therapy from Des Moines University in 2016. Before attending graduate school, he acquired a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Northern Iowa. He obtained clinical internship experience with orthopedic, skilled nursing, and acute populations before obtaining professional experience with outpatient, skilled nursing, and home health populations.
Dr. Klobassa utilizes a holistic treatment approach using evidence-based manual techniques and exercise progressions. His post-graduate education includes courses in dry needling, musculoskeletal taping, instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization, joint mobilizations, and joint manipulations. He plans to obtain certifications in Alexander and McKenzie techniques in the near future.
In his personal time, Dr. Klobassa enjoys hiking, yoga, reading, and writing.
Pegah Shams, PT
Pegah graduated from Iran University of Medical Science and Health Services in 2009. She became a Certified Pelvic Floor Specialist with Herman and Wallace Pelvic Rehab institute in 2017. Pegah has worked in a wide range of settings, including acute care, post- surgery, out patient orthopedic facilities, and aquatic rehab. Pegah has treated a wide range of patient population, including young aspiring athletes to geriatric patients, tailoring the therapy to their personal needs. She emphasizes patient education to promote the understanding of structural abnormalities, therapeutic exercises, and activity modification to manage and prevent symptoms. She also values the integration of skilled manual therapy to directly address pain, enabling patients to achieve their personal goals faster.
Dan Spence, PTA, LMT
Physical Therapy Assistant
Returning to school in 2010 Dan graduated from ACC’s PTA program in 2014. Dan spent the first year after graduation in the Hospital and Rehab setting. Then Dan spent a year in geriatric care in a memory care facility. Dan started at APTS in May of 2016. Dan’s intentions were to eventually get to the outpatient setting where he could more readily apply his massage therapy skills for which he got his license in 1992. After being the office manager at the Turtle Dragon for 13 years, a Chinese Medicine clinic, Dan decided to return to school to find a profession that would further his interest in the human body that would also allow the application of his interest in the practice of massage therapy. When not working Dan uses his skills gained from his first degree, Music, in the various Symphonic Choruses Austin has to offer and with his musical friends in the studio. Dan and his wife Jean have lived in South Austin for 16 years and have 2 special Cornish Rex cats.
Roxanne Ramirez, PTA, FMT
Physical Therapy Assistant
Roxanne Ramirez is an Austinite who graduated with a Bachelor of Science from the University of Houston, main campus in December of 2011 with a major in Kinesiology and minor in Health. After graduation, Roxanne worked as a physical therapy technician for some years in both hospital and outpatient settings. In 2017 Roxanne received her Associates in Physical Therapy from South University in Round Rock, TX. During her studies Roxanne completed an FMT course, where she received a certification for Functional Movement Taping through Rock Tape.
Roxanne believes in personalizing every patients plan of care to best fit their goal(s) using evidence based practice and clinical reasoning. Ms. Ramirez believes in not only treating the dysfunction of the patient, but the patient as a whole, she hands and ears that are willing to help.
Tysa Hazelwood, PTA
Physical Therapy Assistant
Tysa accomplished graduation from Green River College’s PTA program in June 2017 out of Auburn, WA. Within her college experience, she has had a wide variety of exposure with various patient populations and conditions. Since obtaining her license to practice, she finally made her big move that she has dreamed of to her new home of Texas. Outside of Tysa’s full time position here at APTS, she also works at HCR ManorCare of Austin (a skilled nursing facility) to supplement her exposure to various rehabilitation settings. Tysa’s techniques and treatment approach are as unique and detailed as each patient that leaves her table feeling much better than when they came in. She is very passionate about incorporating both manual and active methods to promote symptom relief. Since having no college debt from working two jobs and earning scholarships when she was a student, she is open to the idea of pursing DPT school. Her enthusiasm to learn ,and joy from serving others keeps our patients smiling all day long.
Patient Care Coordinator
Alejandro graduated from the Universidad Autónoma de Guadalajara, Mexico, in 2013. During his practice in Mexico as a PT, Mr. Martinez worked in hospitals and Private Clinics, focusing in Pediatric, Neurological, Geriatric and Orthopedic patients. In 2014 he received the International Certification from the Academy of K-Taping (Neuromuscular Tape). Looking for better opportunities, Mr. Martinez decided to start a new professional journey in the United States.
Mr. Martinez believes that in this profession you never stop learning and he has always been open to learn something new with every patient, proving that each patient is unique and special. He is constantly investigating new techniques and theories to help him provide the best care to the patients.