Shasta Brenske, MS, BCBA
Owner, CEO & Board Certified Behavior Analyst
“Learning should be fun for both the learner and the teacher. That’s why I teach others how to achieve this balance.”
Shasta’s passion for improving the lives of students, patients and families through applied behavior analysis (ABA) formed more than 20 years ago in Kalamazoo, MI, implementing early intervention ABA services with preschoolers at the Croyden Avenue School, one of nation’s top ABA programs.
Since then, she’s taught, treated and overseen treatment for thousands of individuals as a special education teacher, board certified behavior analyst (BCBA), senior BCBA, leader of multidisciplinary patient care teams, and a state director of a national network of health and human services providers overseeing multiple patient care teams and facilities.
In 2017, Shasta drew from her deep collaborative ABA experience to establish Bright Behavior, Inc., which serves children, and their families, ages 2-7 who’ve been diagnosed with Autism, Down syndrome, developmental delays and disabilities and emotional behavior disorders in collaboration with a variety of professionals and healthcare providers.
Shasta received a master’s of science in ABA from Saint Cloud State University in 2006 and a bachelor’s in psychology with an emphasis in behavior analysis from Western Michigan University in 2000. She served as treasurer of the Colorado Association for Applied Behavior Analysis and is a member of its public policy committee. Her research has been published in the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis. Shasta enjoys exploring and camping in Colorado’s wilderness with her husband Russ and their Husky and Saint Bernard.
“Being able to support and lead talented healthcare practitioners who care for children while walking families through what can often be an overwhelming process to obtain medically necessary ABA therapy for their children is what powers me out of bed every morning.”
As a market researcher, production artist, art director and later marketing manager at a global consulting firm, Russ’ earlier career focused on creating unconventional interactive and traditional advertising campaigns for small and medium sized businesses and global organizations. After more than 20 years of helping companies grow, in 2018 Russ joined Bright Behavior, Inc. to further its cause of enriching the lives of those diagnosed with developmental disabilities and their families while ensuring practitioners learn and render best practiced applied behavior analysis therapies.
Russ received a bachelor of arts in advertising from Michigan State University and developed a post graduate art direction portfolio at the Minneapolis School of Advertising and Design.
Aside from work, Russ enjoys trail running, snowboarding, camping, reading and sharing time with his wife Shasta, their dogs and friends.
Sarah Bunch, M.Ed BCBA
Clinical Operations Director
“Every child deserves to live and access their best life. While working with children and their families, I’ve seen the profound impact ABA has had on improving the quality of lives for the patients we serve. I could not ask for a better way to serve my community.”
Sarah started her career in special education in high school where she volunteered as a peer model. She received her bachelor’s degree in special education in 2009 while working as a special education paraprofessional in an autism program. Sarah taught special education for five years and worked as a behavior technician in the evenings while earning her master’s degree in special education. She then went on and completed her BCBA coursework and became a BCaBA before becoming a BCBA in 2015. Sarah has worked with early learners, teens and adults with developmental delays in various settings during her career. She joined Bright Behavior Inc. in 2022 after searching for a compassion based ABA provider.
In her spare time, Sarah enjoys exploring Colorado with friends and traveling to historical landmarks.
Hannah Loucks, M.A. BCBA
“Providing an enriched and compassionate environment for children to grow and thrive should be at the core of what we do. That is why I am here.”
Hannah received a bachelor’s degree from Aquinas College (Grand Rapids, MI) with a major in psychology. After graduating from Aquinas, she moved to Colorado and began her career in ABA as a registered behavior technician while pursuing a master’s of science degree in ABA with an emphasis in Autism from the Sage Colleges (Troy, NY). Hannah acquired a BCaBA credential followed by a BCBA credential in the same year. During Hannah’s career, she has supported children, teens and young adults diagnosed with Autism, Down syndrome, and other developmental delays and disabilities alongside their families. She joined the staff at Bright Behavior, Inc. in the Winter of 2022
In her spare time, Hannah enjoys spending time with her husband and seven pets by being outside, camping and exploring Colorado.
Dr. Kate Deer, Psy.D.
Licensed Clinical Psychologist
“For me, the most important aspects of evaluating children’s development are partnering with families to understand their whole child, accurately diagnosing children, and identifying supports to help children grow, learn and be their happiest, most authentic selves.”
Dr. Deer’s passion for clinical psychology was sparked during her undergraduate years at the University of Connecticut. She obtained her Master’s degree and doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Hartford. Experience in a variety of settings led her to develop a specialty in the psycho-diagnostic assessment of children and teens presenting with neurodevelopmental concerns, complex trauma histories, and behavioral health challenges. For the past several years, she focused on neurodevelopmental evaluations, with a particular concentration on the assessment of autism spectrum disorders. Dr. Deer approaches diagnostic evaluations with empathy, respect for neurodivergence, and a collaborative mindset. Her intent is to understand caregivers’ concerns, and the uniqueness of each child. The utmost goal is to identify evidence-based recommendations that can help a child thrive.
When not at work, you’re most likely to find Dr. Deer trying to keep up with her husband and two young daughters. She enjoys yoga, being outside, cooking, traveling, and spending time with friends and family.
Sarah Urlacher Micklewright, M.Ed, BCBA
Clinical Standards Director and Board Certified Behavior Analyst
“I couldn’t be more excited to be part of such a caring and knowledgeable team!”
Sarah received a bachelor’s from Gonzaga University (Spokane, WA) in 2007 with a major in special education. After graduating from Gonzaga, she spent just over two years in the Peace Corps in Romania. Upon completing her Peace Corps service, she began a master’s program at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN. In 2012, Sarah obtained a master’s in early childhood special education from Vanderbilt; she also completed the BCBA certification requirements while at Vanderbilt. Sarah taught early childhood special education in the public school system for three years before starting work full-time as a BCBA in 2015.
Sarah and her family moved to Colorado in the spring of 2018 where she worked as a BCBA treating children and teens. She joined the staff at Bright Behavior, Inc. in the summer of 2019.
In her spare time Sarah enjoys spending time with her husband and daughters, reading, baking, and being outside.
Brittany Barnhart, M.A., BCBA
Apprentice Coordinator and Board Certified Behavior Analyst
“Being able to treat children during their most critical and early development stages gives me great satisfaction because I’m preparing them for their road ahead.”
Brittany started her ABA career while completing a bachelor’s and practicum program with infants and preschoolers at the University of Kansas. Upon graduation, she worked at a Montessori preschool as a teacher and then as the assistant director.
In 2011 Brittany moved to Florida where she began working as a behavior therapist at Pediatric Behavioral Services providing therapy to children and teens in center, home, and school settings. In 2013 she acquired a BCaBA credential and in 2015 started working at a non-profit school for children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, while also completing a master’s in ABA from Ball State University. Brittany and her husband moved to Colorado in 2016 where she began working as a BCBA with children and teens. She joined Bright Behavior, Inc. in April of 2018.
In her spare time, Brittany enjoys taking her dogs on long walks and spending time with her family.