Knowledgeable minds, compassionate hearts
We have gathered a team of experts in the fields of child development, adaptive recreation, sensory play and occupational therapy to form our Inclusive Play Advisory Board. They have been specifically engaged to provide valued guidance for the development of new products, concepts and user experiences.
Their input ensures that we continue to create inclusive playgrounds that address accessibility, age and developmentally appropriate play activities, as well as sensory play. The Advisory Board shares their expert insights, best practices, latest research and in-depth industry knowledge with the Landscape Structures team, helping us to further advance the inclusive and sensory play movement.
Ingrid M. Kanics, OTR/L
Ingrid is an occupational therapist who strives to help communities create and run amazing places where people of all abilities can play together.
This journey began when she acquired a spinal cord injury while in the U.S. Army, resulting in spinal surgery and 18 months of rehab. Despite her recovery, Ingrid still experiences deficits from her injury. To reduce fatigue, she alternates her mobility between walking and rolling (in a wheelchair). When walking, she depends upon her right side for sensory information, and upon her left side for stability. This daily mental dance, her bi-mobility and other experiences related to her injury deeply influence her work of helping communities expand their understanding of inclusion for all.
Besides a Masters of Occupational Therapy from Duquesne University, Ingrid has a Masters of Interior Architecture with an emphasis on inclusive, sustainable design from Chatham University. She owns her own consulting business, Kanics Inclusive Design Services, LLC, focusing on the creation and operation of inclusive indoor and outdoor play spaces. Ingrid presents at local, state and national conferences on the topics of play, sensory processing and Universal Design.
Dr. Lucy Jane Miller, Ph.D., OTR
A rare disease caused Lucy to begin going blind at age sixteen, leading her to receive two of the first corneal transplants. Her sight was saved. But with her eyes covered by patches for months, Lucy lived in darkness and was treated as a medical object by physicians who paraded experts past to discuss the case. The only one who treated her as a whole person was her occupational therapist.
This life-changing experience influenced Lucy’s decision to become an occupational therapist and devote herself to the study and treatment of Sensory Processing Disorder. She is spearheading the effort to have SPD recognized as a diagnostic entity separate from other disorders.
Lucy founded the Sensory Processing Disorder Foundation in 1979, serving as its executive director since then. In 2005, she founded the STAR (Sensory Therapies and Research) Center, co-located with the Foundation in Denver, Colo., which is designed to provide cutting-edge treatment solutions to children and adults with SPD. Lucy is also a prolific author, with more than 50 articles in peer-reviewed journals and several published books. She has developed the STAR treatment model, which has been demonstrated through research to be effective.
As the mother of four daughters, Mary has long been a parent advocate and volunteer. But when one daughter was born with Down syndrome, Mary became a catalyst for change, working to create inclusive communities throughout a variety of platforms. Her unscripted and accessible Giggle. Play. Connect. events are offered free through the summer. For the past three years, Mary has been the Twin Cities director of the iCan Bike Camp where individuals with a disability can learn to ride a two-wheel bicycle.
Recently Mary joined the Down Syndrome Association of Minnesota as the parent group program manager, supporting parent groups across the state. Mary currently serves on the Minnesota Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities, and the Institute on Community Integration Community Advisory Council.
Over the years, Mary has also served on The Arc GTC Education Action Network, the Minnetonka, Minn., Special Education Advisory Committee and the River Valley Girl Scout Council Inclusion Committee.
Tiffany co-founded Shane’s Inspiration and was responsible for catalyzing the first universally accessible playground on the West Coast, raising more than $1 million for the project through corporate, foundation and community support. Since the first playground opened in 2000, she has helped raise millions of dollars to support the development of more than 90 universally accessible playground projects throughout the United States, Ecuador, Mexico and Russia.
Through her leadership, Shane’s Inspiration has grown into an international nonprofit organization, serving as a leader in universal playground design and sustainability programming. Today, Tiffany is leading the organization’s involvement with the Clinton Global Initiative, committing to bring social inclusion to five continents by 2018 through the vehicle of inclusive playgrounds and programs.
Jeff enjoyed his early career as an instructor in alpine skiing, water skiing, river rafting and challenge course facilitation. But the experiences he has had teaching people with disabilities to relearn favorite sporting activities altered his life forever.
Today Jeff is a certified therapeutic recreation specialist with an emphasis on sports for individuals with disabilities. He wants to make certain that every child and adult, regardless of ability, can benefit from the many social and healthy living skills that are learned in sports. Jeff has developed into one of the premier instructors of adaptive alpine skiing, and is a division clinician and examiner for Professional Ski Instructors of America, Adaptive.
Jeff is also the manager of adaptive sports and recreation for Salt Lake County, Utah, offering more than 20 different programs for individuals with disabilities. His mission continues to be a personal one. Jeff is a proud supporter of his wife and gold medal-winning Paralympic athlete, Muffy Davis, who competes in both summer and winter events. Together, they enjoy playing with their daughter on the many inclusive playgrounds they find throughout their travels.
For Andy, it’s important to create spaces where everyone wants to be, from kids of all abilities to people of all generations. He enjoys developing playgrounds that engage parents along with their kids, forming gathering spots for neighbors to meet and socialize.
Andy was the project landscape architect for the master planning of Summit Park, a 230-acre park in Blue Ash, Ohio. This playful, educational and inclusive family destination weaves play and nature into a continuous experience. Andy specifically designed the playground to be integrated within the landscape, almost as if it had simply emerged one day—a discovery moment for all ages and abilities.
Andy is a landscape architect and design principal with the landscape architecture, urban design and planning firm, MKSK. He holds a master’s degree in landscape architecture from Ohio State University. His experience includes park master planning, cultural facilities planning and design, and community enhancement projects.