Sarah Thomas, RMA

Sarah joined the Clinic for Special Children in 2023 as a Medical Assistant. In this role, Sarah will assist in providing day-to-day clinical and administrative services including rooming patients, phlebotomy, cleaning and preparing exam rooms, answering phone calls, and scheduling appointments.

Prior to joining the Clinic, Sarah worked as a Medical Assistant in family medicine and occupational medicine practices and at a regional hospital.

In her free time, Sarah enjoys hiking or going for a walk with her kids. She also enjoys visiting the beach and family who live out of town.


Sarah’s Credentials

Education & Certifications

  • Registered Medical Assistant
  • 2020  Purdue University Global, Medical Assistant

Professional Experience

  • Registered Medical Assistant, Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health Occupational Medicine
  • Registered Medical Assistant, Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health Family Medicine
  • Clinical Assistant, Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health Occupational Medicine
  • Patient Care Assistant, Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health
  • Certified Nursing Assistant, Lancaster Regional Hospital

Susan Walther, MS, CGC

Susan joined the Clinic for Special Children in 2022 as a Genetic Counselor. In this role, she will assist in new patient triage and intake, provide genetic counseling services, and manage logistics of the molecular diagnostics service. As a member of the clinical team, Susan will also assist physicians with genetic testing decisions and the evaluation of patients.

She brings a wealth of experience in genetic counseling, research, patient advocacy, and sales, and has collaborated on a number of peer-reviewed publications. In her free time, Susan enjoys traveling and trying out new recipes.

Why are you passionate about the Clinic?

I have been interested in both the clinical and laboratory work offered at the clinic since I was a genetic counseling graduate student. It is a rare opportunity to be able to serve the Plain communities as a healthcare provider and to collaborate on cutting-edge research that not only benefits the patients seen at the clinic but also provides knowledge and insight to other medical specialities.

Susan’s Credentials

Education and Certifications

  • Arcadia University, Master’s of Science in Genetic Counseling
  • Pennsylvania State University, Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry
  • University of Pennsylvania, The Wharton School, Marketing Certificate
  • Board Certified Genetic Counselor by the American Board of Genetic Counseling

Professional Associations

  • National Society of Genetic Counselors
  • Pennsylvania Association of Genetic Counselors

Professional Experience

  • Director of Patient Engagement, Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance (FARA)
  • National Sales Trainer and Genetic Testing Sales, GeneDx/Bio-Reference Laboratories/Opko Health
  • Clinical Genetic Counselor, University of Pennsylvania Genetic Diagnostic Laboratory
  • Clinical Genetic Counselor, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Division of Medical Genetics
  • Clinical Genetic Counselor, Columbia University Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine
  • Clinical Genetic Counselor, Drexel Center for Genetics, Fetal and Maternal Medicine
  • Scientific Technician, Fox Chase Cancer Center
  • Research Associate, Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research Institute
  • Research Technician, Rutgers University, Dept. of Biological Sciences

Alexis McVey, BSN, RN, CPN

Alexis joined the Clinic for Special Children in 2021 as a Nurse. In this role, Alexis works within our clinical team to provide exceptional patient care. She organizes and administers immunizations, assists with general patient care, and supports the specialists who volunteer their time to the Clinic.  In 2022 she was promoted to Nurse Manager with responsibility to supervisor and organize nursing services.

Prior to joining the Clinic, Alexis worked in nursing for adolescent medicine, acute care, primary care, skilled nursing care, and home care.

In her free time, Alexis enjoys spending time with her husband and son. She also enjoys restoring old furniture and reading.


Why are you passionate about the Clinic?

I am passionate about the clinic because I love the idea of providing pediatric medical care in the community where I live. I look forward to being part of the medical team that provides cutting-edge care in a rural community.


Alexis’ Credentials

Education & Certifications

  • Active Pennsylvania, Delaware, and New Jersey RN Licenses
  • Certified Pediatric Nurse
  • Healing Touch Certified Level 1
  • 2013  West Chester University, Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing

Professional Experience

  • Nurse Clinician III, Nemours Children’s Health System
  • Home Care RN, Bayada Pediatrics Home Care
  • Charge Nurse, Kendal-Crosslands Communities

Professional Associations
Society of Adolescent Health and Medicine


  • 2018  Synergy Award “Response to Diversity”

Amy Albright, MS, CGC

Amy joined the Clinic for Special Children in 2021 as a Genetic Counselor. In this role, she will assist in new patient triage and intake, provide genetic counseling services, and manage logistics of the molecular diagnostics service.

Before joining the Clinic staff full-time, Amy interned at the Clinic in her second year of graduate school. Her graduate thesis project was on Plain community perceptions of the Plain Insight Panel™. Joining the Clinic was like coming home for Amy, as she grew up in Lancaster County. In her free time, Amy enjoys discovering new hiking spots in Lancaster and crafting.

Why are you passionate about the Clinic?
It is a privilege to serve the Plain community alongside such a devoted team. The staff at the Clinic centers their practice and research around the families they serve, using the most cutting-edge technology to make genetic discoveries that will meaningfully impact the lives of patients. I am honored to be able to use my skills to help this unique and wonderful community.

Amy’s Credentials

Education and Certifications

  • 2021  Thomas Jefferson University, Master of Science in Human Genetics and Genetic Counseling
  • 2019  West Chester University, Bachelor of Science in Biology; minor in Psychology
  • Board Certified Genetic Counselor by the American Board of Genetic Counseling
  • CounCITI Training Certification

Professional Experience

  • Pediatric Genetic Counseling Intern, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
  • Cancer Genetic Counseling Intern – Telemedicine Internship, Penn State Cancer Institute
  • Pediatric Ophthalmology Genetic Counseling Intern, Wills Eye Hospital
  • Cancer Genetic Counseling Intern – Telemedicine Internship, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital
  • Prenatal Genetic Counseling Intern, Geisinger Hospital

Grace Loudon Meier, MD

Dr. Grace Meier, a Family Medicine Physician, joined the Clinic for Special Children in August 2020. Her training in Family Practice allows her to see patients of any age; making her an ideal addition to our staff.  Dr. Meier will lead efforts in formalizing an adult services program at the Clinic.

Dr. Meier earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from Bryn Mawr College in 2012 and a medical degree from Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University in 2017. She completed her family practice residency at Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health (LGH) in 2020.

For two years, Dr. Meier visited and saw patients periodically at the Clinic as part of a special program between the Clinic and LGH called the Clinical Genomics area of concentration. When the Clinic partnered with the Family Medicine Residency Program at LGH to create this genetic medicine training program, Dr. Meier was one of the first to sign up.

In her free time, Dr. Meier enjoys spending time with her family and her two cats (Miles and Millicent), visiting the beach, working on home improvement projects, biking, and running with her dog (Remi).


Why are you passionate about the Clinic?

The clinic is patient care, research, and science at its finest. I am ecstatic to be here working with, learning from, and being inspired by my patients, their families, and my colleagues. But actually, it’s not work because I love what I get to do.

Stephen D. Ratcliffe, MD, MSPH

Dr. Ratcliffe is excited and delighted to have the opportunity to serve in the role of a Senior Consultant in the development of an adult services focus for the Clinic for Special Children.  Most recently he served as Program Director of the Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health Family Medicine Residency between 2002 and 2019. He joined the Board of the Clinic for Special Children in 2014 and has been able to develop relationships and understanding of its mission and vision.  In addition to this part-time position at the Clinic, he will be maintaining a family medicine practice at Lancaster Health Center-Water Street, a federally qualified health center.

Laura Poskitt, DO

Dr. Laura Poskitt, a board-certified Pediatrician, joined the Clinic for Special Children in July 2019. Her training as a DO (Doctor of Osteopathy) makes her passionate about healing of the whole person, focusing on specific medical needs, but also exploring the social, mental, and emotional aspects of health.

She is a native of Lancaster County and graduated from Hempfield High School. Dr. Poskitt and her husband, Will, have a young son Oliver, and a daughter, Violet. In her free time she enjoys reading historical fiction, traveling to new places, and visiting art museums.

Why are you passionate about the Clinic?

I feel privileged to work at CSC!  It is an opportunity to practice medicine in an ideal environment. At CSC, the staff functions like a family and is able to work with some of the most wonderful patients and families. At the same time, CSC provides care using cutting-edge technology and novel genetic research. This combination allows CSC to be a place for compassionate care while working towards a brighter future. I am excited about the work CSC is doing, and even more excited about what is to come.

Dr. Poskitt’s Credentials

Education and Certifications

  • Board certified in Pediatrics by American Board of Pediatrics
  • 2019  Thomas Jefferson University/Nemours Children’s Hospital Delaware, Chief Pediatric Resident
  • 2018  Thomas Jefferson University/Nemours Children’s Hospital Delaware, Pediatric Resident
  • 2015  Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine
  • 2011  Grove City College, Bachelor of Science in Psychology, pre-medicine concentration


  • 2017 – 2018 The Rosenblum Award for Excellence, Nemours Children’s Hospital, Delaware
    • Outstanding Senior Resident in Pediatrics
  • 2017 – 2018 Critical Care Award, Nemours Children’s Hospital, Delaware
    • Outstanding Resident Performance in the Area of Pediatric Critical Care Medicine

Published Papers

To view Dr. Poskitt’s peer reviewed published papers, please visit our Published Papers page HERE.

Keturah Beiler, BSN, RN, CHPPN

Keturah joined the Clinic for Special Children in 2017. As the Cherished Lives Program Manager, she is passionate about our palliative care program, Cherished Lives, for children or adults who have life limiting or terminal diagnosis and leads the effort to bring home individualized care for these patients.  As a registered nurse with the Clinic, she assists with general patient care and supports the specialists who volunteer their time to the Clinic.

She has led the implementation and planning of successful 5K fundraising events for CSC since 2018. In her spare time, Keturah loves to spend time with her husband, children and extended family members.  She enjoys traveling and being outside for running or hiking. Keturah was raised in the Beachy/Amish Community, and her experience has led to a deep understanding of the Amish and Mennonite communities and values.

Why are you passionate about the Clinic?

Having grown up in a Beachy Amish household, it is exciting and fulfilling to me to be able to give back to the Plain community – many of whom deeply impacted my life.  I am passionate about serving people and helping the most vulnerable among us, our children.

Keturah’s Credentials

Education and Certifications

  • 2020  Eastern Mennonite University, Bachelor’s of Nursing
  • 2014  Harrisburg Area Community College, Associate’s Degree in Nursing
  • Hospice and Palliative Pediatric Registered Nurse
  • PALS certified
  • ELNEC Train the Trainer Certified
  • Completed Palliative Care and Education Practice (PCEP) by Harvard Medical School

Professional Experience

  • Registered Nurse Household Team Leader
  • Emergency Nurse, Landis Homes
  • School Nurse Substitute, Lampeter-Strasburg School District
  • June 2021 – Grand rounds presenter at Nemours Children’s Hospital, Delaware, “Understanding the Plain Communities”

Professional Associations

  • Member of the Pediatric Palliative Care Coalition
  • Member of HPNA (Hospice and Palliative Nursing Association)


  • 2021 Nightingale Awards of Pennsylvania Community Nursing Finalist

Kevin A. Strauss, MD

Kevin Adams Strauss, MD joined the Clinic as a Pediatrician in 2001. He was promoted as the Clinic’s Medical Director in 2008. As the Clinic’s Medical Director, he works to develop and implement strategic goals and objectives that fulfill the clinical, research, and educational missions of the Clinic. Dr. Strauss is also responsible for overseeing the clinical, research, and laboratory operations of the Clinic. He has been instrumental in establishing collaborative relationships between the CSC and partner organizations. Dr. Strauss is a member of the executive leadership team of the Clinic.

Dr. Strauss has served as a Principal Investigator on a number of industry sponsored and investigator initiated clinical studies to identify disease-modifying therapies for spinal muscular atrophy, phenylketonuria (PKU), Crigler-Najjar syndrome, and more. Dr. Strauss has co-authored over 80 peer reviewed journal articles and given over 65 lectures about medical, scientific, and cultural issues all across the globe.

Why are you passionate about working for the Clinic?

I have the best job in the world. Every day I meet with families and I help them through difficult times. Sometimes I can offer a cure, sometimes a specific diagnosis, sometimes I can only offer sincere advice, but I can always reduce or prevent suffering for a child.


Dr. Strauss’ Credentials

Education and Certifications

  • Board certified in Pediatrics by American Board of Pediatrics
  • 2001  Boston Combined Residency in Pediatrics, Resident in Pediatrics
  • 1998  Harvard Medical School, Doctor of Medicine
  • 1990  Colgate University, Bachelor of Arts in Biology

Professional Associations

  • American Academy of Pediatrics, Fellow
  • American Board of Pediatrics, Member
  • American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy, Member
  • Society of Inherited Metabolic Disorders, Member
  • Aspa Therapeutics, AAV-mediated gene therapy for Canavan Disease, Data Safety Monitoring Committee
  • CoA Therapeutics, Scientific Advisory Board Member
  • DDX3X Foundation, Scientific Advisory Board Member
  • FNIH-FDA-NIH Accelerated Medicines Program, Bespoke Gene Therapy Consortium, Clinical Task Force
  • MSUD Family Support Group, Scientific Advisory Board Member
  • Nemours/A.I. duPont Hospital for Children, Staff Physician
  • Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health, Staff Physician
  • University of Massachusetts School of Medicine, Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics; Department of Molecular, Cell & Cancer Biology
    • Investigator, Horae Gene Therapy Center
    • Investigator, Li Weibo Institute for Rare Diseases Research


  • 2020 Rare Impact Award, National Organization for Rare Disorders
  • 2018 Physician Achievement Award: Science and Innovation, Penn Medicine Lancaster General Hospital
  • 2018 Community Star, National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health
  • 2013 Bock Prize for Innovation in Developmental Disabilities Research, Nemours/A.I. duPont Hospital for Children
  • Michael Osband Memorial Award for Excellence in Clinical Research
  • Medical Student Education Committee Award for Teaching Excellence
  • Senior Resident Teaching Award
  • The New England Pediatric Society Prize

Published Papers

To view Dr. Strauss’ peer reviewed published papers, please visit our Published Papers page HERE.

Donna L. Robinson, MSN, CRNP

Donna L. Robinson, MSN, CRNP, PPCNP-BC, earned her BSN from Eastern Mennonite University in 1984 and her MSN/CRNP certificate from the University of Pennsylvania in 1995 in pediatric critical care. She earned her certification as a Primary Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner from the American Nurses Credentialing Center in 1995. She worked as a staff/charge nurse on the pediatric floor from 1984-1995. Donna joined the staff at the Clinic for Special Children as a pediatric nurse practitioner in 1995. At the Clinic, Donna is responsible for the clinical care of patients both in the office and hospital, taking call responsibility, interpreting amino acids and coordinating patient care. She has helped with numerous Clinic research projects and contributed to numerous peer reviewed papers. She co-authored a paper on the nursing care of the MSUD patient.

Why are you passionate about the Clinic?

I’ve always appreciated the personal touch the Clinic has for each patient, where every patient is a child and not a disease to study. Education of the family and patient is a priority so the family can make informed decisions and be active participants in their care. Donna, famous at the Clinic for her cakes, shares that care at the Clinic is tailored to the patient and not a “cookbook” protocol.

Christine Hendrickson, RNC

Christine joined the Clinic for Special Children in 2002 after working with many of the patients at Lancaster General Hospital.  Christine holds an associate’s degree in nursing from Delaware Technical and Community College and is certified in pediatrics.  Christine is responsible for the CSC outreach clinics, family days, and the clinical subspecialty providers that visit CSC. She also works in a clinical team with Dr. Carson.

Why are you passionate about the Clinic?

The clinic is a very special place.  Establishing relationships with the clinic families has inspired me to be a better person.  I can honestly say that I love what I do.

Vincent Carson, MD

Dr. Vincent Carson earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Penn State University in 2004 and a Medical Degree from Drexel University in 2011. He completed his pediatric and child neurology training at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. He has affiliations with the American Academy of Neurology and the Child Neurology Society.


Dr. Carson grew up in Lancaster County and followed the work of the Clinic for many years before joining the staff in 2016. He has a special interest in the genetics of brain disease. As a neurologist, he specializes in disorders of the brain, spinal cord, nerves, and muscles. His responsibilities at the Clinic include providing care for patients, serving on the organization’s on-call rotation, reading EEGs, and participating in research protocols. Dr. Carson is a co-investigator on clinical trials for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) and has great interest in the research of genetics and neurogenetic syndromes. In 2021, Dr. Carson delivered a TEDx Lancaster talk about “The Power of a Genetic Diagnosis“.


Why are you passionate about the Clinic?

To me, the Clinic represents how medicine should be practiced. It is focused on finding pragmatic answers for people who have difficult problems. It is focused on being precise, both in diagnosis but then also in treatment. It shows how you can provide a high level of quality care without the exorbitant cost of modern healthcare.