Our Story

From our founder Karen George driving around Chicago providing in-home speech therapy services to a flourishing multidisciplinary practice of 200+ employees, CST Academy has come a long way. This is our story.
Our Story | CST Academy
2010 | CST Academy Our Story

2010

Karen George, who received her graduate degree from Marquette University, had dreamt of starting her own pediatric speech therapy practice for many years. In 2009, she decided to take the leap and founded Chicago Speech Therapy.
Our Story | CST Academy
2011 | CST Academy Our Story

2011

Karen’s reputation grew and in 2011, she hired her first full-time SLP as referrals were surging and the practice’s reputation for effective therapy grew. 2011 was also the year when Quinn, who is an entrepreneur and Karen’s husband, joined to help manage the practice.
Our Story | CST Academy
2012 | CST Academy Our Story

2012

To accommodate a growing team, Karen and her team moved into a small office at 1422 W Willow St in Chicago’s Bucktown neighborhood.
Our Story | CST Academy
2015 | CST Academy Our Story

2015

As the Chicago Speech Therapy practice continued to grow Karen and her team recognized that many children could benefit from a therapeutic day program that addressed a wide range of key developmental skills, such as speech and language, social skills, behavior, motor skills, and more. This idea led to the beginning of CST Academy, a therapeutic preschool-styled program.
Our Story | CST Academy
2016 | CST Academy Our Story

2016

2016 was a busy year as CST hired its first occupational therapist and its first BCBA and officially became a multidisciplinary practice to keep up with parent demand. This was the start of Chicago Occupational Therapy and Chicago ABA Therapy, which seamlessly integrated into CST’s existing offerings.
Our Story | CST Academy
2017 | CST Academy Our Story

2017

The addition of the therapeutic preschool and both OT and ABA led to rapid growth and a second clinic was added at 1765 N Elston Ave in the same Bucktown neighborhood.
Our Story | CST Academy
2019 | CST Academy Our Story

2019

Our first physical therapist joined the team to ensure that we could serve all of our kiddos’ needs.
Our Story | CST Academy
2020 | CST Academy Our Story

2020

A third location is added at 2121 N Clybourn in Lincoln Park as demand for our multidisciplinary services continues to surge.
Our Story | CST Academy
2022 | CST Academy Our Story

2022

Our first suburb location in Wilmette, IL opened its doors as CST Academy’s reach continued to grow.
Our Story | CST Academy
2024 | CST Academy Our Story

2024

After a successful launch in Wilmette, our Northbrook, IL location opened its doors in early 2024.
Through this journey, CST Academy has remained steadfast in its commitment to innovation, quality care and community support. We're more than just a therapy center; we're a growing family dedicated to supporting each child's unique path to success.
100+ 5-Star Google Reviews | CST Academy
"After almost 2 years our son’s time at CST Academy has come to an end. The preschool program has done wonders for him. Ms Jaclyn is such a warm, kind and patient teacher. She and my son’s OT (Ms. Nikki) and ST (Ms. Erika) worked together to ensure he was meeting all of his goals. The level of collaboration between all therapies shows how dedicated they are to helping your child reach their full potential. They have all made such an impact on him, it’s amazing to see the changes since he started there. He has blossomed into a strong, confident boy who is more than prepared to start his new school in a few weeks. We will always fondly remember our time at CST Academy. Can’t recommend them enough!"
"I worked with CST Academy over a period of about 10 months. They are absolutely incredible! I also referred a friend to their program and the progress his child made just blew him away! Usually, I don’t write reviews unless I feel strongly compelled one way or the other, and in this case I do! You cannot go wrong here. I would not trust my children to anyone else. Call them and see for yourself. I have seen other programs and there is just no comparison."
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