CoachArt Board Welcomes Christina Gallo, Founder and Director of Child’s Play Occupational Therapy Services

 In News, Our Mission, San Francisco

Christina Gallo, founder/director of Child’s Play Occupational Therapy Services, joins CoachArt board

small-logoChristina Gallo, MS, OTR/L, a pediatric occupational therapist who founded and runs Child’s Play Occupational Therapy Services in Lafayette, California, has joined the CoachArt board of directors. CoachArt is a non-profit organization that matches volunteer coaches with chronically ill children and their siblings for free arts and athletics lessons.

“Christina’s expertise in child behavior will deepen our understanding of the challenges faced by many of the families we serve,” said CoachArt Executive Director Greg Harrell-Edge.

“As a pediatric occupational therapist, my mission is to support a child’s ability to fulfill their occupational roles,” Gallo said. “Chronic disease and developmental delay both can derail a child’s ability to participate in occupations, which for all humans is an integral part of defining the essence of the self.”

“It is my honor to volunteer my time and effort to CoachArt, an organization dedicated to providing children impacted by chronic illness the opportunity to define themselves through sports and the arts, rather than to define themselves through illness,” she said.

Christina was born and raised outside of Boston. She completed her undergraduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania and graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in the Biological Basis of Behavior. This major, which integrated psychology and neurobiology, sparked Christina’s interest in functional neurobiology and therapeutic interventions that impact brain processing.

She then pursued a Master of Science in Occupational Therapy with the specific intent to work with children using a neurobiological approach to therapy. She graduated from Temple University and earned Temple’s Award for Highest Academic Achievement. Her master’s thesis explored the relationship between sensory processing and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

Christina has also completed an advanced practice certificate in infant-parent mental health though U. Mass Boston. She is an Advanced Mentored Clinician in Sensory Processing Disorder via the STAR Institute. Her additional trainings and certifications include DIR/Floortime, therapeutic listening, interactive metronome, Sequential Oral Sensory approach to feeding, and Brain Gym.

Over the past 20 years of years of practice she has accumulated knowledge about the impact of nutrition and gut health on brain function. She has personal experience using the Feingold diet, Gaps diet, and Paleo diet.

Christina moved from the east coast to Northern California in 2009. She is an exercise enthusiast and enjoys adventuring and spending time with her friends and family.


Give a "virtual high five" on National High Five Day (Thursday, April 19th), and $5 will be donated to CoachArt!CoachArt creates a transformative arts and athletics community for families impacted by childhood chronic illness. CoachArt was founded in 2001 by Zander Lurie and Leah Bernthal in memory of Zander’s father, Dr. Arthur Lurie, a cardiac surgeon who recognized the need for long-term support and enrichment among the pediatric patient population. Today, this non-profit organization provides high-quality, no-cost lessons and activities in arts and athletics to children in Los Angeles, San Diego, and the San Francisco Bay Area with the support of volunteers, community partners, and generous donors. To get involved please visit or call 213-736-2850.

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