Clinical Staff

Dr. David Worling (#1365)

Registered Psychologist

Director of the Westcoast Child Development Group and the Spectrum Works Consulting Group.

Dr. Worling has worked extensively with individuals on the Autism Spectrum for the past 25 years. In addition to providing diagnostic and learning assessments, he has developed innovative treatment protocols for social competence, self-coping, depression, and anxiety.

Dr. Worling established the Westcoast Child Development Group as a full time private practice for children on the Autism Spectrum in 2003. As his clinical population matured and encountered new challenges entering the job market, he began advocating for Autism employment issues and developed the intervention protocols now offered by Spectrum Works Consulting. Dr. Worling currently supports a number of employees and employment firms as they navigate Autism in the workplace.

Dr. Worling holds academic affiliations with the Psychology Clinic at SFU and teaches a course on Autism as a Sessional Instructor with the Psychology Department at UBC.  He is also Qualified Specialist affiliated with the British Columbia Autism Assessment Network and has given a number of workshops and presentations regarding ASD.

Leah Marks (#16138)

Registered Clinical Counsellor, Academic and Career Strategist

Leah Marks is a Registered Clinical Counsellor as well as an experienced academic advisor and career strategist. She specializes in supporting individuals through life decisions and navigating the world of work, school, and relationships. She is passionate about building hope and momentum for a wide range of clients especially in times of transition and uncertainty.

Leah works alongside clients to envision possible options, design a viable plan that considers their interests, strengths, training, and experience; to identify internal or external barriers that may exist; and to determine achievable next steps.  Clients 18 and older may be referred to relevant community resources or assessments, supported to identify and research their field of interest, counselled through mental health challenges, coached to build strategies to support executive functioning, and guided through academic program choices and job searches.

Leah holds a Master’s degree in Counselling Psychology and Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and Gender studies from the University of British Columbia. Her approach is informed by extensive training and work experience at UBC in academic advising, the UBC Life and Career Centre, the Centre for Student involvement and Careers, and Alumni UBC. She has completed level 3 practicum training in Gottman Methods Couple Therapy.

Dr. Kimberly Armstrong (#2322)

Dr. Kimberly Armstrong has provided services to individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders and their families since 2004. She has worked and trained in a number of different setting, including the Autism Research Centre at the University of Cambridge, the Autism and Developmental Disorders Lab at SFU, the Queens University Developmental Disabilities Consulting Program, BC Children’s Hospital, and Child and Youth Mental Health (CYMH).

Dr. Armstrong has published research in a number of peer-reviewed journals, including The Journal of Autism and Developmental Disabilities, Autism Research, and Molecular Autism. She is currently a Clinical Faculty member with the Neurodevelopmental Disorders Program in the Department of Psychiatry at UBC. Her clinical work includes providing diagnostic assessments, consultation, and therapy for adolescents and adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders, with a focus on females.

Kimberly is currently on leave until summer 2022. We look forward to her return.

Dr. Aaron Jacobson (#2337)

Prior to relocating to Vancouver, Dr. Jacobson worked at Kaiser Permanente in Santa Rosa, California, for seven years in the Child Psychiatry Department.  He worked as a case manager for young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders and other developmental disabilities, and co-led the Teen Intensive Outpatient Program.  In addition to seeing patients through Westcoast Child Development Clinic, Dr. Jacobson also sees clients through Spectrum Works, providing support to adolescents and adults on the Autism Spectrum with co-occurring mental health conditions. Additionally, Dr. Jacobson specializes in foster/adoption issues, blended families, and has worked extensively with survivors of abuse and neglect.  He has treated a wide variety of mental health issues, including depression, anxiety and panic, school refusal, and self-harming behavior.

He has over ten years’ experience as a clinician and has specialized training in the areas of Brief Strategic Family Therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Autism Diagnostics, and Group Therapy. Dr. Jacobson has also conducted trainings for clinicians in adolescent suicide assessment and therapeutic interventions for individuals on the Autism Spectrum.  He has given talks at a wide variety of agencies, including schools and foster care organizations.  

Dr. Jacobson integrates a number of different modalities into his work, but generally works as an Interpersonal therapist.  He encourages full family participation in the psychotherapeutic treatment of children and adolescents.  


Antes de mudarse a Vancouver, el Dr. Jacobson trabajó en Kaiser Permanente en Santa Rosa, California.  El lleva siete años en el Departamento de Psiquiatría Infantil. Trabajó como gerente de casos para jóvenes con trastornos del espectro autista y otras discapacidades del desarrollo, y fue codirector del Programa Intensivo para Adolescentes. Además de atender a los pacientes a través de Westcoast Child Development Clinic, el Dr. Jacobson también asesora a Spectrum Works, brindando apoyo a adolescentes y adultos autistas con trastornos concurrentes de salud mental. Además, el Dr. Jacobson se especializa en asuntos de adopción / crianza, familias combinadas, y ha trabajado extensamente con sobrevivientes de abuso y negligencia. Él ha tratado una amplia variedad de problemas de salud mental, que incluyen depresión, ansiedad y pánico, rechazo escolar y comportamiento autodestructivo.

Tiene más de diez años de experiencia como médico y tiene capacitación especializada en las áreas de Breve Terapia Familiar Estratégica, Terapia de Comportamiento Dialéctico, Terapia Cognitiva Conductual, Diagnóstico de Autismo y Terapia Grupal. El Dr. Jacobson también ha realizado capacitaciones para médicos en la evaluación del suicidio adolescente y las intervenciones terapéuticas para individuos en el espectro del autismo. Ha dado charlas en una amplia variedad de agencias, incluidas escuelas y organizaciones de cuidado de crianza.

El Dr. Jacobson integra varias modalidades diferentes en su trabajo, pero generalmente trabaja como terapeuta interpersonal. Alienta la participación familiar total en el tratamiento psicoterapéutico de niños y adolescentes.


Dr. Katia Jitlina (#2417)

Registered Psychologist

Dr. Katia Jitlina has worked with children and families in different capacities since 2003. She completed her Ph.D. in School Psychology at the University of British Columbia. Her research has focused on the development of Anxiety Disorders in children with Autism, as well as translating clinic-based anxiety interventions to the school setting. She is passionate about early interventions for mental health and overall development, as well as promoting the mental health and emotional well-being of children and youth with Autism.

She finished her residency in Clinical Child Psychology at McMaster Children’s Hospital, where she worked in the Child and Youth Mental Health and Autism Spectrum Disorder services. She previously completed practica with Child and Youth Mental Health, the Calgary Learning Centre, the Early Childhood Mental Health Program at Richmond Hospital, and worked as a psychometrist with the Neonatal Follow-Up Programme at BC Children’s Hospital. In providing treatment, she uses a collaborative therapeutic framework that is influenced by cognitive-behavioural, developmental, interpersonal and family therapy approaches.

Dr. Jitlina is available to conduct diagnostic, developmental, and psychoeducational assessments, and to provide therapeutic and consultation services.

Katia is currently on leave. We look forward to her return.


Anthony Bailey, MBBS, DCH, MRCPsych, FRCPsych, FRCPC

Academic Advisor

Professor and Chair of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia  

Dr. Bailey is a leading researcher of the neurobiological basis of autistic disorders, using genetic, neuropathological and neuroimaging approaches. He injects this experience into his clinical work with teenagers and able adults on the Autism Spectrum.

Dr. Bailey comes to Canada from the University of Oxford where he was the Cheryl and Reece Scott Chair of Psychiatry: the first medical chair devoted to the study of autism. At Oxford, Dr. Bailey built the first Magnetoencephalographic Centre designed for the study of autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders. He also coordinated the International Molecular Genetic Study of Autism Consortium: a large international team of clinicians and scientists brought together to identify susceptibility genes for autism.

Dr. Bailey became Professor and Chair of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at UBC in July 2010. He is the founding Editor-in-Chief of Autism Research: the Journal of the International Society of Autism Research.

Tom Beasley, BA, MA, LLB

Employment Lawyer

Tom has represented employers and employees in all aspects of the employment relationship for over 30 years. In the last decade, a large portion of  his practice has concerned mental health and harassment issues in the workplace. He was co-counsel for the Learning Disabilities Association of Canada in Moore v. British Columbia (Education) 2012 SCC 61 where the Supreme Court of Canada dealt with accommodation by a public school of a student with dyslexia.

Tom’s practice has included litigation and mediation in all employment based tribunals in British Columbia and in all levels of Courts in British Columbia and in the Federal Court system, and in the Supreme Court of Canada, in addition to arbitrations under Collective Agreements.  He has written many articles on human rights, judicial review and employment law for the Continuing Legal Education Society of BC, and is a regular speaker at other professional continuing education conferences.

Work is a fundamental and integral part of everyone’s identity. Tom firmly believes that resolving workplace issues promptly and efficiently is of primary importance for both employees and employers, and that this best achieved by a collaborative approach involving relevant disciplines. He often works collaboratively with psychologists, investigators and others in resolving workplace conflicts and looks forward to applying that approach for employees who are on the Autism spectrum.

Administrative Staff

Kate Kha

Clinic Administrator

Kate is one of the Westcoast Child Development Group Clinic Administrators. She provides information to clients about services at the clinic, provides referrals, supports daily front desk procedures, and manages client accounts.

Kate graduated with a dual degree in law and forensic criminal studies from Yaroslav Mudryi National Law University in the Ukraine, and recently completed a professional diploma in hospitality management in Vancouver. She is dedicated to providing high quality administrative services and values working in an environment that supports psychological health. She is fluent in English, Russian and Ukrainian.

In her spare time, Kate enjoys listening to music, hiking, and going to concerts. She also enjoys reading books and poetry.

Shafayat Teimur

Clinic Administrator

Shafayat is also a Clinic Administrator at Westcoast Child Development Group. She provides information to clients about services at the clinic, provides referrals, coordinates assessments, and manages daily front desk procedures.

She graduated with a B.A. in Psychology from Bahcesehir University, and a M.A. in Organizational Psychology from Bilgi University in Istanbul, with a focus on women in the workplace. Shafayat is fluent in English, Turkish, and Russian.

Her long-standing interest and training in psychology and human resources inspires her efforts to cultivate a healthy workplace and clinic where clients and clinicians feel comfortable and supported.

In her spare time, Shafayat loves to explore the outdoors, bake, paint, spend time with her friends, and read.

Latest Posts

Our response to COVID 19

Dear valued families and clients of Westcoast Child Development Group and Spectrum Works Consulting Group, As a result of directives from the government and health officials regarding the global health crisis, we have decided to take measures to guard the health and safety of our clients, staff, and clinicians while continuing to provide support and […]

Read More

ASD Traits We Could All Use

While many treatment protocols and supports for individuals with ASD are geared to reduce symptoms–to help them ‘fit in’ to society–it is important to note that there are many ASD symptoms that could (and should) be adopted by the larger society. Listed below are some general traits that have been associated with ASD and that we […]

Read More