Creative Therapy

Agency Description

Creative Therapy Autism Centre (CTAC) was founded in 2019 as a new division of Creative Therapy Associates (CTA), a locally owned rehabilitation practice in Thunder Bay, Ontario that has been in operation in Northwestern Ontario region for over 30 years, CTAC is a multidisciplinary centre and provides diagnostic assessments and evidence-based intervention for children and youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

We employ a team of qualified OTs. SLPS and behavioral therapists, and are in a partnership with Shining Through Centre, subcontracting 2 full time BCBAs who supervise our therapists and clients daily at that centre.

Our centre offers a full menu of high-quality therapy services to children, youth, young adults and families impacted by ASD. We are committed to a coordinated and integrated approach to service delivery and to offering options that are tailored to the unique needs of the whole child, youth or youing adult, The CTAC team has been built with these goals in mind and they offer a wide variety of services, from parent mediated, programs to direct service options including ABA MI, JASPER. Hanen More Than Words, PECS, The Play Project, DIRFloortime, and Autism Navigator.


Therapist Descriptions


Liz Hathazi, M.A.

Liz Hathazi is a practicing Speech-Language Pathologist with over 30 years of experience, and is co-owner of Creative Therapy Associates, in Thunder Bay Ontario.

This past year, Liz and her longtime colleague and business partner founded a new division for Creative Therapy Associates called Creative Therapy Autism Center, in order to offer children impacted by ASD and their families
in the region, a full menu of multidisciplinary, evidence-based services including behavioral, occupational and speech-language pathology. Liz’s current area of clinical focus is the provision of assessment and treatment for children with speech and language delays; and with autism spectrum disorder and disorders of relating and communicating. She is trained in Hanen More Than Words, Autism Navigator for Early Intervention, DIRFloortime and the Play Project and has advanced training in the Early Start Denver Model.

Liz holds a Bachelor of Applied Science, and a Master of Arts from the University of Minnesota Duluth,


Arlene Sanzo

Arlene Sanzo, OT Reg. (Ont.) is an Occupational Therapist who graduated with a Bachelor of Health Sciences in Occupational Therapy degree from McMaster University in 1996 after completing her Honours Bachelor of Physical Education degree at Lakehead University in 1994. She has been practicing in pediatrics since that time and has worked extensively in a variety of settings including private practice and a children’s treatment centre as well as within daycare and school environments. She was involved in the development of the Kindergarten Skills Camp in collaboration with
the Thunder Bay Catholic District School Board.

She enjoys working with parents/guardians, community partners, and educators to provide the best possible care for the children she works with. She has been a mentor for many occupational therapists and has developed and presented at various conferences and workshops and has been an invited speaker for different programs at Lakehead University. She has completed the ADOS-2 Clinical Training and the Play Project introductory course. Her diverse knowledge and experience in the areas of sensory processing, self regulation and fine motor development assists with supporting children’s overall learning and participation.

She is pleased to be part of the dynamic team of professionals at Creative Therapy Associates who are dedicated and passionate about the community, partners and families who they work and collaborate with.


Melanie Manula, M.S.

Melanie Manula is a registered Speech-Language Pathologist with more than 25 years of experience in the field. She received her Masters of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Wisconsin in Eau Claire in 1994 and returned to her roots in Northwestern Ontario to begin her career with Creative Therapy Associates.

She currently resides in Thunder Bay with her two children. In 2015, she joined forces with a long-time colleague and friend, Liz Hathazi, to assume a leadership role in the practice they had helped to build over two decades.

They share a similar vision and are committed to maintaining a dynamic team of professionals that work in collaboration with community partners, to provide quality client-centered care to the individuals and families in Thunder Bay and the surrounding area.

The Creative Therapy Autism Centre, founded in 2019, was build on the same passion and commitment to serve children and families impacted by ASD in their region and offers a full menu of evidence-based services for an integrated approach.

Melanie has training in the Hanen More Than Words Program, Early Start Denver Model, and The Play Project.

Melanie is also passionate about mentoring new clinicians in the field of Speech-Language Pathology as well as offering opportunities to other students to explore the field as a potential career in order to support recruitment and retention in Northwestern Ontario.


Stephanie Cistrone, BCBA

Stephanie Cistrone has over 9 years of experience working in the field of Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) working with and supporting individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Stephanie obtained her Honours Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Waterloo in 2012 and her postgraduate certification in Autism and Behaviour Science from George Brown College in 2014. In April 2017, Stephanie obtained her Masters of Applied Disability Studies with a specialization in Applied Behaviour Analysis from Brock University. In August 2017, Stephanie earned her Board Certified Behaviour Analyst (BCBA) certification.

Stephanie has experience delivering care to individuals with disabilities across a variety of programs including one-to-one behavior intervention, academic remediation, remote/online learning, social skills, as well as adult programs that focus on vocational and life skills. Stephanie currently works as a remote BCBA Supervisor supporting individuals with ASD and their families in Northern Ontario.