Our Background

professional pic... carol

Carol Van Ness has a BA in Child Psychology and Masters Degree in Special Education, specializing in Severe Affective and Cognitive needs. She has been working with children and adolescents with developmental and neurological dysfunction for 25 years. She is a licensed Educator and has many certifications related to Behavioral Sciences, Neuro-development, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and Education. Memberships include: The National Honor Society in Psychology, Psi Chi, and the Golden Key National Honor Society. Carol most recently developed a program and worked as Clinical Director for Carmel Brain Centers for children, adults and seniors with brain related issues (memory, attention, concentration, social and life skills). This program received the Outstanding Program of the Year award from The Arc Pikes Peak region in 2015. She served on the board of Directors for Special Kids, Special Families and as President of the Broken Brain Achievers Club. She is also a member of the Brain Injury Professional Network and the Brain Injury Alliance of Colorado.

Her Certifications include :

QBS Safety Care Behavioral Safety Trainer, Parenting and Educating with Love and Logic Facilitator, Informed Supervision (with Sexual Offenders), IEP development, implementation and advocacy, Therapeutic Crisis Intervention, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Prevention of Youth Suicide (Jason Foundation), Interactive Metronome Certified Provider, The Listening Program  (Advanced Brain Technologies) and more.

Currently Carol is pursuing a PhD in Developmental Psychology.



Janis Bickers has a BS in Engineering, went through ROTC in college and served 5 years as an officer in the United States Army.  She started out her civilian career as a Technical Writer for GE/Marin Marietta Government Services at Fort Carson, Colorado. Later, she worked for USAA Insurance Company doing Property and Casualty Insurance for 7 western states at the Colorado Springs office for 9.5 years.  In 2005, she was introduced to Cognitive Brain Training and her passion and giftings were ignited.  She saw the power of how a personalized brain training program could help those with learning struggles and disabilities have better, more successful lives and futures.  In 2015, she added training with the Brain Builder® and The Listening Program® by Advanced Brain Technologies and Interactive Metronome to her therapies.  Janis can coach you through an individualized plan by utilizing The Listening Program®, which addresses deficiencies that affect the whole person’s being, such as their motor function, cognition, and social engagement.  Janis continues to add therapies and modalities to the services she provides both in-office and for at-home use.

Her Certifications, Volunteering, and Organizations:

She has been a Certified Provider of The Listening Program®, Sleep Genius®, and Brain Builder® by Advanced Brain Technologies,  Certified provider for Interactive Metronome, and Facilitator for a Woman’s Group at Heart to Heart Counseling Center.

Current member of Savvy in Business, Brain Injury Proffessional Network, and Pikes Peak Interagency Transition team.



Norma Thibodeau is a longtime Colorado resident, recently moving back from spending time with her family in California. She is fluent in both Spanish and English and embraces her Hispanic heritage with her love of dance and cooking.

She has experience in Psychology, Criminal Justice and Child care, which she has used to assist the Spanish speaking population.

Her professional experiences include Bilingual Paraprofessional, translator, and clerical assistant with the Baldwin Park Unified School district and for Academy School District 20 in Colorado Springs. She also served as a SPED Outreach Coordinator for D20.  Her continued experience with youth include Activities Coordinator for the Parks and Rec Dept. in Baldwin Park, CA and in Colorado Springs, Caregiver, Games room coordinator, Teen coordinator with the YMCA of the Rockies, and Counselor with the Children’s Ark Residential Treatment Center facility.  Her volunteer experience includes positions such as a teacher’s assistant in kindergarten, and serving on the Parent Board of directors for youth sports activities, head-start/pre- school, and elementary school programs.

As Spanish Editor for the Hispania News publication, and Translator for numerous agencies, she has been of great value in reaching out to the Hispanic population.  As Family Coordinator and Caregiver with the Veterans Administration Dept. and Project Sanctuary she has been able to advocate for our Military community.

She is excited to join A Cognitive Connection, LLC to be able to serve children and adults with their educational and cognitive needs so that our client’s success is not hindered by any language barriers. Recently she received training to become an Instructor for Mental Health First Aid from the National Council for Behavioral Health and will be offering classes soon.


 Hannah Gallez is originally from Illinois but has been living in Colorado since November 2014 and absolutely loves it here. She received her bachelor’s degree in Christian School Elementary Education from Barclay College in Kansas. After college, she served in the United States Peace Corps in Thailand. She been working with children her whole life and in various capacities. She taught K-12, has been a caregiver to infants through Pre-K, worked with ESL students and was a tutor for an after school program for teens. She helped youth with their learning disabilities and behavioral issues and is excited to be doing more one on one with people of all ages to help better the quality of their life.