About Miss Steph

In my personal life, I'm a 30-something wife and mama with a super supportive husband and two fantastic little boys.  I love theatre, dance, and music.  I can't turn down an awesome pedicure, massage, or a genuine hug.

In my professional life, I am a nationally certified sign language interpreter, licensed Signing Smart instructor, and owner and president of Signing With Miss Steph, LLC.  Really though, the two are very much intertwined.

As a child in elementary school, I started my own journey with American Sign Language (ASL) thanks to the many Deaf friends, their teachers and interpreters I shared my classrooms with.  I was able to learn my second language in the most natural way possible - through authentic day-to-day interactions. In this way, I learned firsthand how sign language could unlock the door to communication, learning, and relationship-building.

Fast forward 15 years or so:  I'd had the chance to experience many wonderful and no-so-wonderful but still valuable life "things." I had just graduated from Kent State University with a degree in educational interpreting, and I was moving to Washington D.C. to start the next phase of my life.  I'd also met, fallen in love with, and was preparing to marry my best friend.

During the next several years, I would have the chance to work in a variety of settings including business and government, medical and mental health, theater, religious, and video relay.  In 2008, back in Northeast Ohio, I proudly received my NIC certification from the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf.  Since that time, I have added more roles to my life including interpreter, intervention specialist, caregiver, presenter, mentor, teacher, and—above all—mom.  Through all of this, authentic interactions have been, and continue to be, the hallmark and goal of all my work.

In fact, in that newest, and most important role, I discovered the passion for what I do today: teaching young children and their families to communicate and to learn through the use of ASL—all with amazing success. 
The birth of my oldest son in 2011 spurred me to search for a program that would foster early communication, deepen intimacy, and promote learning with infants and toddlers. Based on my experience, I knew that whatever program I chose would have to be 100% ASL and developmentally appropriate for young children. Signing Smart met these stringent requirements. In it, I found a program that enriches what hearing parents and caregivers are already doing with their children, by introducing sign language as a medium. Since then, as a licensed Signing Smart instructor,I have been given the privilege to start families, teachers, and caregivers in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Georgia on their own journeys to enriching their lives with American Sign Language. And it all began with my own family! My husband and I began signing with each of our boys when they were less than a week old.
Since that beginning, I have discovered, as have the families I've been lucky enough to work with,  that taking the Signing Smart approach to using ASL signs with infants and toddlers reduces frustration and tantrums,because it allows children to express what they need or want before they are able to speak; it facilitates speaking and develops language skills; it fosters communication; it deepens intimacy; and it promotes learning at a young age, building conceptual understanding, memory, and vocabulary. By using these practical, easy-to-learn methods, parents and babies—from five months (even younger occasionally!) to preschool age—can begin to communicate in a way that would not otherwise be possible.

My blog is an extension of this passion as I reach out to all families and caretakers of little ones  - encouraging them to sign, supporting them though fun times and tough times, and encouraging them  to be their very best for the sake of the important little ones in their lives.


  1. Nice to meet you too Miss Steph! You are doing very important work, May you always continue to prosper and of course enjoy your lovely family!

    1. Thanks for stopping by with such sweet words, Mary. I hope you'll stop back and share some of our adventures!