Mariah Kenagy, SLP-A
Mariah Kenagy is a speech-language pathologist assistant with an affinity for working with children.
“They bring me so much joy, and I love helping them learn, grow, and explore,” she explained. “Helping children communicate functionally and incorporating their interests and needs is something I am very passionate about.”
She grew up in Gower, Missouri, a place she describes as “a small town of 1,500 people and no stoplight.”
Although she knew she ultimately wanted a career working with kids, she spent the first two years of college without clear direction of her professional path – until the mother of a teammate on her collegiate volleyball team invited her to shadow her work as a speech-language pathologist for a day.
“It was an instant spark,” Mariah says. “I knew I wanted to become an SLP.”
While earning her undergraduate degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders at Missouri State University, she worked at a preschool, witnessing firsthand the importance of communication in the life of a child. Obtaining her bachelor’s degree in 2020, she began working as a tele-therapist in her home town, primarily for kids in middle school. She joined the FOCUS Speech Therapy team in May 2020, and is now enrolled in the Speech-Language Pathology graduate program at Florida State University.
She and her husband Colton, a golf instructor, moved to Southwest Florida after getting married, enticed by the beachside sunsets and year-round warm weather (though she does miss the fall leaves).
Here at FOCUS, she especially appreciates the chance to collaborate with an interdisciplinary team.
“We truly are one big family,” Mariah said. “I love learning from other therapists and disciplines within FOCUS, something that really makes this place so unique.”
She adds that parent involvement is key to every child’s success, which is why she prioritizes building positive relationships with every family as a cornerstone of her therapeutic philosophy.
When she’s not at FOCUS, she and Colton are spending time with Teddy, their adopted golden retriever, as well as playing golf, working out, hanging out with their church family, cheering on the Chiefs and seizing every opportunity to travel.