Board of Directors

Karyn ("Casey") DePriest, President

Casey is the founder of Optimal Rhythms.  She is a certified neurologic music therapist with small business and not-for-profit board experience.  She specializes in services for individuals with autism spectrum disorder.  A 1994 graduate of University of Evansville, Casey is the owner of Integrative Music Therapy, LLC and serves on the Friends of UE Music Board and the Health Occupations Advisory Board at SICTC.

Scott DePriest, Vice President

Scott is the General Manager of Bob’s Gym Newburgh.  He is the previous Director of Insurance Client Services at Springleaf Financial Services, working in management and finance for over 20 years.  He brings business, management, and financial expertise to Optimal Rhythms.  Scott enjoys personal fitness, tennis, and reading, with an interest in public service. 

Amy Miller, Secretary/Treasurer

Amy is a board-certified music therapist. She enjoys working with individuals with developmental disabilities.  Amy and her husband, Matt, are the founders of Isaac Miller Music Matters Endowment – in memory of their son, Isaac.

Elly Moore, Board Member

Elly is working within the arts programming at Evansville Christian School.  She has worked as a public school educator and teaches private music lessons.  She is passionate about our community, providing positive opportunities for children, parents, and teachers to learn from one another.  

Jacob Weis, Board Member

Jacob is an attorney with Shoe Carnival in Evansville, IN.  He is licensed to practice law in Indiana and Florida.  He earned his Bachelor of Science in Biology, Master of Public Affairs, and Doctor of Jurisprudence from Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana.  Prior to attending law school, Jacob proudly served his state and country for eight years in the Indiana Army National Guard.  He enlisted as a Private in field artillery and separated as a Captain in military intelligence.  He served tours-of-duty in Afghanistan and Iraq.  He also shares the mission of Optimal Rhythms and works to support individuals to achieve their maximum potential.

Advisory board

Cami Berkau, Parent Advocate

Cami is the mother of three adult children, the youngest of which struggles with severe autism.  She has been a fierce advocate for her son throughout his education and his fight to receive appropriate medical care.  Cami has experience with multiple behavioral, bio-medical, and neurologic treatment strategies and will tell you “they have tried everything”.  She has seen a very positive transformation in her son, Josh, as well as their family’s understanding of autism since partnering with Optimal Rhythms, Inc.

Josh Berkau

Josh is a young adult on the autism spectrum.  He is non-speaking, but communicates by typing with support for his disordered body.  Josh began communicating at the age of sixteen, at which time he was also given the opportunity to access an academic education for the first time.  He was the Autism Society of Indiana’s Excellence in Advocacy award winner in 2014-15.  Also, he has been a student delegate to the Indiana Youth Leadership Forum.  Josh is passionate about advocating for himself and others like him who are too often presumed incompetent because of autism related dyspraxia. 

Phyllis Fisher, Guardian Advocate

Phyllis works for SIRS of Indiana, helping to care for individuals with developmental disabilities.  Having known Optimal Rhythms’ founder professionally for a number of years, she believes in and has seen first-hand the benefits of music therapy for individuals with autism spectrum disorder.  Phyllis is the aunt and guardian of a young adult with autism spectrum disorder.

Alex Garrison, Self-Advocate

Alex is a young adult on the autism spectrum.  He is a self-advocate.  Through his own journey, he has learned that he can help others by sharing about his own experience.  He is very passionate about educating the public about autism spectrum disorder and the psychological damage that can occur from bullying as well as the lack of understanding about neurologic issues of autism spectrum disorder. Alex was a delegate to the 2015 Indiana Youth Leadership Forum in Indianapolis.  Alex graduated from Boonville High School and completed the Project Search program. He is now employed as a result of his hard work and determination.

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