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Department of Pediatrics

Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics Fellowship


A world in which all children with developmental and behavioral disabilities and other special health care needs achieve their full potential.


The Developmental - Behavioral Pediatrics Fellowship is a three-year program for pediatricians wanting a subspecialty focus that addresses the needs of the 1 in every 8 children and youth living with neurodevelopmental, behavioral and psychosocial impairment. Our fellowship prepares the next generation of physicians for careers that integrate diagnostic challenges, collaborative research, advocacy, long-term connections with the children and families they serve through consultation and ongoing treatment for their conditions. Upon completion of the program, graduates will be Board-eligible in the subspecialty of Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics.

Our faculty members pursue a wide variety of clinical, research and advocacy interests and serve a diverse group of patients and families. Working closely with faculty, our fellows collaborate with other internal and external fellowship programs across departments and institutions to tailor a fellowship experience that best fits their interests and future goals.

Core training principles emphasize building leadership in:

  • Family-centered care - putting families and their concerns first
  • Interdisciplinary care - building relationships among family, professionals, and community
  • Cultural competency - recognizing, respecting, and celebrating diversity
  • Health and disability - promoting health and meaningful life participation for all children

What is Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrician?

Developmental-Behavioral Pediatricians evaluate, treat and manage infants, children, and adolescents with a wide range of neurodevelopmental and behavioral concerns and conditions, including challenges that affect learning, movement, general health, behavior and community access. Our fellows are active in numerous STET settings and closely collaborate through a bio-behavioral approach with faculty and trainees across other professional disciplines.

Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics focuses on:

  • understanding the complex developmental processes of infants, children, adolescents and young adults, in the context of their families and communities
  • integrating the biological, psychological, and social influences on development across the emotional, social, motor, language, and cognitive domains
  • preventing primary and secondary disorders in behavior and development
  • identifying and treating disorders of behavior and development throughout childhood and adolescence


In keeping with the longitudinal nature of the fellowship experience, DBP fellows participate in clinical activities throughout their three years of training in center-based and community-based settings.

Clinical training experiences span the broad field of Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics including cerebral palsy, intellectual disability, neural tube defects, CNS abnormalities, autism, developmental language disorders, sensory deficits, learning disorders, Fragile X, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and psychopharmacology.

Fellows will develop clinical competence over the entire spectrum of brain dysfunction from high severity, low frequency disorders (e.g. spina bifida) to low severity, high frequency disorders (e.g., ADHD).

Acquired clinical skills will encompass the prevention, diagnosis, assessment, and management of these and related disorders.

Informational Videos



Three fundamental principles characterize the fellowship’s curriculum:


To prepare health professionals to assume leadership positions across the nation, addressing the complex needs of infants, children and young adults with developmental and behavioral disabilities and their families.


To assure the continued development and competence of the faculty and fellows while rapidly disseminating new knowledge to professionals currently active in the fields of neurodevelopmental disabilities and developmental behavioral pediatrics.


To collaborate with Maternal Child Health Bureau, state Title V agencies, families, consumers and other national, regional and community resources, providing both continuing education and technical assistance.

Fellows should expect to spend approximately half of their fellowship time in clinical activities and the other half in research over the three-year training period.

An essential component and primary foundation for the clinical and service orientation of the first year of training is the Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and related Disabilities (LEND) Program through the Center on Human Development and Disability, University of Washington. Fellows will participate in weekly formal / structured and facilitated discussions on core developmental behavioral pediatrics topics to further develop excellence in clinical care and teaching. Upon completion of the UW LEND training program, trainees successfully achieve the following leadership competencies:

  • Knowledge and skill in all aspects of neurodevelopmental and related disabilities (NDRDs) including: prevention and health promotion, early detection, evaluation, treatment strategies, care coordination, evidence-based practice, medical home, and adolescent health transition issues.
  • Knowledge and skill to practice and advocate the interdisciplinary model of service and research in health and related service including cross-cutting leadership skills such as ethics, policy analysis, advocacy, and constituency building.

Educational experiences and research methods are introduced in the first year as well.

Research is a required component of the fellowship. A key focus during the second and third years of training will be to assist the fellow in developing a scholarly focus. There is a high degree of flexibility in the topic choice, from clinical outcomes studies to quality of life/care and basic research activities. Fellows develop a clinical research project under the direction of the program director and scholarship oversight committee. This process typically involves developing a funding proposal, implementing the research design, publicly presenting the project, and preparing a manuscript for publication purposes.

All fellows are expected to assume leadership roles in quality improvement projects and / or the development of clinical guidelines.

There are opportunities for fellows to pursue additional degrees and training within the University of Washington (e.g., School of Public Health). Fellows without an MPH or PhD are expected to complete, at a minimum, a certificate program through the School of Public Health in Maternal and Child Health. The program is able to minimize direct costs of this to the fellow (tuition and books reimbursement). The program and faculty members recognize the importance of this training and have prioritized class work / attendance in schedule development and clinical duty assignments.

Core Training Sites

University of Washington Center on Human Development and Disability (CHDD)

University of Washington Center on Human Development and Disability (CHDD)

CHDD is one of the nation's largest and most comprehensive interdisciplinary research and training centers focusing on a wide array of developmental disabilities. The Clinical Training Unit (CTU) at CHDD is an interdisciplinary program that provides training, research, and exemplary services in the assessment and treatment of children with or at risk for developmental disabilities, using a family-centered, community-based, culturally competent approach in a variety of clinical formats.

The Child Development Clinic provides diagnosis, assessment and management plans for children from early childhood to adolescence. The interdisciplinary teams include professionals from audiology, developmental/behavioral pediatrics, nursing, nutrition, psychology, occupational therapy, physical therapy, social work, and speech and language pathology to evaluate each child and make recommendations for care. Trainees participate in hands-on and didactic training which includes assessments, parent conferences, lectures, and report writing. Over 200 children are served per year with a wide range of diagnoses including intellectual disability, autism spectrum disorders, motor disabilities, learning disabilities, behavioral disorders, communication disorder, and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.

The High Risk Infant Follow-Up (HRIF) clinic at CHDD provides developmental follow-up of children from birth to age eight years. It provides an ideal setting for interdisciplinary training. The goal of the clinic is to provide early identification and referral for early intervention for the neurodevelopmental and neurobehavioral problems associated with prematurity, drug exposure and other biomedical and environmental risk factors for over 400 clients per year.

Seattle Children's Hospital Neurodevelopmental Clinic and the SCH Autism Center

Seattle Children's Hospital Neurodevelopmental Clinic and the SCH Autism Center

The majority of clinical activities at SCH occur within the Neurodevelopmental Clinic and the SCH Autism Center.

The Neurodevelopmental clinic serves as a center for the comprehensive medical evaluation, coordinated consultation, diagnosis and collaborative management of children – birth to 21 years – with complex neurodevelopmental disabilities and congenital anomalies. Areas of particular focus include cerebral palsy, Fragile X, spasticity management, spina bifida and tics / Tourette's and related comorbidities (ADHD, LD, OCD). In each case, an interdisciplinary care model that involves the interaction of multiple expert providers and provides coordinated follow-up is essential. Interdisciplinary evaluations may include evaluations by specialists in orthopedics, rehabilitation medicine, neurology, neurosurgery, urology, speech therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, nutrition, and social work.

This clinical site also serves as a neurodevelopmental diagnostic program that provides an initial assessment of a child whose development is not keeping up with the expectations of family and primary care physician.

There are also clinical experiences at SCH to participate in the Craniofacial program and to consult regarding children (birth to 21) with neurodevelopmental disabilities and congenital defects who are hospitalized at SCH and to collaborate with the inpatient Medically Complex Child service.

Launched in August 2009, Seattle Children’s Autism Center is dedicated to providing comprehensive and timely autism services under one roof regardless of a family's ability to pay. It provides screening, assessment, diagnosis, treatment (including medication management) and parent education and support for autism spectrum disorders. It offers this range of medical and mental health services for babies, children and young adults. Therapy models used include cognitive behavioral therapy, functional analysis, functional behavioral assessment, pivotal response training, behavioral feeding therapy, parent-child interaction therapy and other attachment-based therapies. The center works closely with Seattle Children's Neurodevelopmental, Neurology, Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine, Sleep Disorders, Genetics and Gastroenterology programs to insure complete and coordinated care.

Madigan Army Medical Center (MAMC)

Madigan Army Medical Center (MAMC)

Madigan Army Medical Center is home to the only ACGME accredited Developmental Behavioral Pediatrics fellowship within the Department of Defense. Training is primarily interdisciplinary with an emphasis on the management and coordination of comprehensive care for children with special health care needs and covers all areas of developmental behavioral pediatrics. UW / SCH fellow may participate in a broad range of multidisciplinary clinics during their clinical rotations at MAMC: Behavior Intake Clinic, Autism Spectrum Disorder Clinic, ADHD Clinic, Fellow’s Clinic, Pediatric Behavior Clinic, and Learning Disorders.

Training includes on site interaction with professionals in a wide range of specialties. Faculty all have clinical faculty appointments at the University of Washington School of Medicine.

Program Director

Samuel H Zinner, MD

Professor of Pediatrics, Fellowship Program Director


Kristie F Bjornson, PhD, PT, PCS

Associate Professor Research Affiliate, Center on Human Development and Disability

Timothy Brei, MD, FAAP

Professor of Pediatrics

Dan Doherty, MD, PhD

Professor Research Affiliate, Center on Human Development and Disability

Lisa D Herzig, MD

Assistant Professor of Pediatrics 

Anne M. Leavitt, MD

Clinical Professor

(DeAnna) Sue Livingstone, MD

Clinical Associate Professor

Emily Myers, MD

Clinical Associate Professor Fellowship Program Assistant Director

William O. Walker, MD

Division Chief Professor Robert A. Aldrich Endowed Professor in Pediatrics Director, Neurodevelopmental/Birth Defects Clinic

Samuel H Zinner, MD

Professor of Pediatrics, Fellowship Program Director

Fellows and Alumni

Established in 1975, the University of Washington program has a long history of successfully producing leaders in developmental disabilities care, research and education within academic institutions, children’s hospitals, public health departments, or other appropriate settings.


Julia Mattson

Julia Mattson, MD, PhD

Third Year Fellow [2018-2021]
Medical School: University of Texas Southwestern Medical School
Residency: Northwestern University

Anisha Srinivasan

Anisha Srinivasan, MD

Third Year Fellow [2018-2022]
Medical School: University of Vermont School of Medicine
Residency: University of Washington

Erika Phelps-Nishiguchi, MD

Erika Phelps-Nishiguchi, MD

Second Year Fellow [2019-2022]
Medical School: Michigan State University School of Human Medicine
Residency: University of Washington

Marnina Gottesman, MD

Marnina Gottesman, MD

First Year Fellow [2020-2023]
Medical School: Ruth and Bruce Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, Technion Israel Institute of Technology, Israel
Residency: Albert Einstein College of Medicine



Angela Armen, MD

Angela Armen, MD


Current position: Assistant Professor
Division of Developmental Medicine
Seattle Children’s Hospital

University of Washington Department of Pediatrics

Rachel Follmer

Rachel Follmer, MD


Current position: Assistant Professor of Pediatrics
Division of Developmental Medicine
Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago

Meghan Behrmann

Meghan Behrmann, MD


Current position: Assistant Professor
Division of Developmental Medicine
Helen DeVos Children's Hospital

Lisa Herzig, MD

Lisa Herzig, MD


Current position: Assistant Professor
Division of Developmental Medicine

Seattle Children’s Hospital
University of Washington Department of Pediatrics

Emily Myers, MD

Emily Myers, MD


Current Position: Associate Professor
Division of Developmental Medicine

Seattle Children’s Hospital
University of Washington Department of Pediatrics






How to Apply

Who Can Apply

Applicants will have completed a minimum of three years of training in an ACGME approved pediatric residency program. Due to funding constraints, we are only able to accept individuals who have U.S. citizenship or permanent resident status.

Application Requirements


  • Application Deadline: October 6
  • Interview Time Period: August – October
  • NRMP Match Day: December 16
  • Fellowship Start Date: July 7

Interview Process

  • All interviews will be conducted on Zoom for the 2020 interview season.
Program Director

Samuel H Zinner, MD

Professor of Pediatrics, Fellowship Program Director

Seattle Children’s Hospital
4800 Sand Point Way NE
M/S OC.9.845
Seattle, WA 98105-5005

Program Coordinator

Cammie Bullock

Fellowship Program Coordinator

206.987.2360 (phone)
206.987.3824 (fax)