Our Staff

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Get to Know Our Team

When you come in for your therapy sessions at Taylor Physical Therapy, each session is overseen by a physical therapist, occupational therapist, physical therapy assistant  or occupational therapy assistant who will help guide you through a program that was developed specifically to meet your therapy goals.

Get to know the team of physical and occupational therapy professionals at each of our five locations by reading their bios below.

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  • Executive

  • Jerod Gayer, PT, DPT, ATC

    Jerod Gayer, PT, DPT, ATC

    Owner, Physical Therapist, Certified Athletic Trainer

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center, Noah Clinic Division: Executive

    In 1997, Jerod graduated from the University of Iowa with a B.S. in Exercise Science. He pursued his Masters of Science in Physical Therapy from Washington University and graduated in 1999. He then went on to achieve his Doctor of Physical Therapy degree in 2003 from the Arizona School of Health Sciences. He is proud to be one of the owners of Taylor Therapy and welcomes the challenges faced with continuing the legacy that Bill Taylor started with the company. His job duties include administrative and management duties for the company, orthopedic and sports medicine, patient care at the Wartburg Clinic and Waverly Health Center, athletic training for students at Waverly-Shell Rock High School, and has even offered sideline coverage for the local high school football team for the past 17 years.

     

    Jerod spends his time away from the office with his wife, fellow PT Debra, and their three kids and two dogs. He also volunteers to provide sports medicine coverage at WSR High School and Wartburg College. He serves as a board member for the WSR Grid Iron Club and coaches youth soccer, football and basketball. Jerod's favorite sports teams include the Iowa Hawkeyes, St. Louis Cardinals, the Dallas Cowboys, and the WSR Go-Hawks.

  • Debra R Gayer, PT

    Debra R Gayer, PT

    Owner, Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center, Nashua Therapy Division: Executive

    Debra graduated in 1996 from the University of Northern Iowa with a Bachelor of Science degree and continued her education to graduate with a Master of Physical Therapy degree from Washington University in St. Louis. In addition to her duties as owner of Taylor Physical Therapy, Debra also works as a full-time physical therapist with an expertise in neurologic rehab. She is a Certified Lymphedema Specialist and a Vestibular Rehabilitation Specialist. She also focuses on providing care to women for pelvic pain, bowel and bladder dysfunction, SI joint dysfunction, pregnancy and post-pregnancy pain, and is trained in pelvic biofeedback.

     

    Debra stays busy with her three children, two dogs, and her youth soccer team that she coaches. Her favorite sports team is WSR - Go Hawks!

  • Ronald Ragsdale, PT, DPT

    Ronald Ragsdale, PT, DPT

    Owner, Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center, Sumner Clinic Division: Executive

    Ronald Ragsdale received his Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from St. Ambrose University after receiving his Master's of Physical Therapy degree from the University of Iowa and a Bachelor's Degree in biology and chemistry from Briar Cliff University. Ronald has been with Taylor Physical Therapy since 1997 and currently serves as a managing partner. He works with patients of all ages and specializes in wound care, dry needling, trigger point treatment, lower extremity biomechanics, custom orthotic fabrication, shoulder rehab and TMJ treatment.

     

    Ronald and his wife live in Waverly and have three children. They enjoy spending time together while traveling and being active outdoor. He volunteers at his church and Waverly schools and also serves as a little league coach and community speaker.

  • Occupational Therapy

  • Cody Lafler, OTR/L

    Cody Lafler, OTR/L

    Occupational Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center Division: Occupational Therapy

    Cody graduated from St. Ambrose University with a Masters of Occupational Therapy. He has also been certified through Workwell Solutions in functional capacity evaluations, job site analysis, and pre-work screens. Cody is currently working towards his goal of becoming a certified hand therapist and advancing his skills in working with patients with shoulder injuries/surgeries. He works as an occupational therapist at our Waverly Health Center location for both inpatients and outpatients. Cody approaches his patients with a positive outlook, no matter what type of illness or injury the patient is being seen for, by building great rapport with patients and families.

     

    In his free time, Cody volunteers at Habitat for Humanity and Big Brother Big Sister. He is newly married with his first child on the way and enjoys playing with his dog, singing, and playing guitar in live venues for the local community.

  • Leasa Lantzky, OTR/L

    Leasa Lantzky, OTR/L

    Occupational Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center, Sumner Clinic Division: Occupational Therapy

    Leasa graduated from Wartburg College with a BA degree in Biology and a MS and OT degree from Washington University in St Louis' School of Occupational Therapy. You can find Leasa at each clinic working with acute care, skilled care, long-term care, and home health care patients. She also sees outpatients in assisted living centers at both the Sumner and Nashua clinics on an as-needed basis. Leasa enjoys working with patients of all ages and tries to bring humor and light into conversation during her treatment sessions. 

     

    In her free time, Leasa volunteers at various church activities as well as the concession stand for the WSR booster and band booster clubs. Her husband, two children, and dog Oliver all enjoy cheering on the St. Louis Cardinals and the Iowa Hawkeyes.

  • Margo Jebe, OTR/L

    Margo Jebe, OTR/L

    Occupational Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center Division: Occupational Therapy

    Margo graduated from Iowa State University with a BS in Leisure Studies and an emphasis in Speech Language Pathology. She enhanced her knowledge by moving on to graduate from the University of Kansas Medical Center with a BS in Occupational Therapy. Margo primarily provides inpatient and outpatient care while assisting with some home health and nursing home care patients.

     

    Margo has a son and a daughter and also rescued a Brittany Spaniel-Poodle mix named Stamos.

  • Physical Therapy

  • Ashley Chizek, PT, DPT, ATC

    Ashley Chizek, PT, DPT, ATC

    Physical Therapist, Certified Athletic Trainer

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center Division: Physical Therapy

    Ashley graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a Bachelors of Arts degree in Athletic Training in 2009. In 2011, she graduated with a Doctorate in Physical Therapy from the University of Iowa. As a physical therapist, Ashley's job duties include working one-on-one with patients to help them reach their goals. Her treatment approach is more manual and exercise-based, depending on whether the patient has stability or mobility deficits.

     

    Ashley and her husband stay active with their son and dog and love to be outdoors. As an avid runner, Ashley enjoys working with the active population by participating in activities without pain or limitations. In her free time, Ashley has taken additional running courses and has experience with gait analysis.

  • Brooke Toohey, PT, DPT

    Brooke Toohey, PT, DPT

    Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center Division: Physical Therapy

    Brooke graduated from Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa in 2006 with a BA, majoring in Biology with a minor in Psychology. In 2008, Brooke graduated from the University of Iowa Rehabilitation Science program with a Doctorate in Physical Therapy. At the Waverly Health Center, as well as the Hillcrest and Tripoli nursing homes, Brooke enjoys working with geriatric patients for the treatment of vertigo, balance, and general orthotics. Getting the opportunity to work one-on-one with patients, spending quality time educating patients on the role of PT in their life, and making patients and coworkers smile with her banter are Brooke's favorite parts of her job. 

     

    In her free time, Brooke is busy with her husband, two children, and two dogs. She enjoys volunteering at various school activities within the community. Brooke is a fan of the Wartburg College Knights football team, the Iowa Hawkeyes, and the Chicago Cubs.

  • Casey Doyle, PT

    Casey Doyle, PT

    Physical Therapist, Manager

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center, Parkersburg Clinic Division: Physical Therapy

    Casey attended Wartburg College and graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Biology in 2001. He continued his education at the University of Iowa Graduate Program in Physical Therapy then graduated with a Master's Degree in Physical Therapy in 2003. Casey offers outpatient and home healthcare services while working on business wellness program development, occupational health rehabilitation which includes functional capacity evaluations, post-offer testing design, and job-site analysis.

     

    Casey's favorite sports teams include the Iowa Hawkeyes, Chicago Cubs, and the Chicago Bears. In his free time, he enjoys coaching recreational soccer and youth wrestling. Casey and his wife stay busy with their three children and two dogs.

  • Jenifer Anderson, PT, DPT

    Jenifer Anderson, PT, DPT

    Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center Division: Physical Therapy

    Jenifer attended St. Ambrose University where she received a Bachelor of Science degree with a Major in Exercise Science and a Doctorate of Physical Therapy. She enjoys meeting new patients and discovering how she can best help each individual improve their health and function through physical therapy.

     

    Jenifer spends her free time outdoors on family bike rides and enjoys going swimming with her husband, Luke, and their three children. She also volunteers at her church, assisting in the nursery as well as assisting with the setup and tear down activities.

  • Jennifer Burke, PT, DPT

    Jennifer Burke, PT, DPT

    Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center Division: Physical Therapy

    Jennifer attended the University of Northern Iowa and graduated in 2007 with a Bachelors of Arts degree in Psychology and a minor in Biology. She earned her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree in 2009 from the University of Iowa. As a physical therapist, Jennifer evaluates and assesses patients thoroughly to create an individualized plan of care. She incorporates training in Selective Functional Movement Assessment, Functional Dry Needling, and Therapeutic Pain techniques to provide evidence-based care to help her patients meet their goals, improve their functional mobility, and increase their quality of life.

     

    Along with her three children, husband, and dog, Jennifer and her family love being outdoors, hiking, biking, and swimming. She also completes triathlons with her husband and loves to travel and spend time with friends and family. You can always find Jennifer and her family cheering on the Hawkeyes and Boston Red Sox or volunteering at St. Paul's School PTO and Crosspoint Church.

  • Jennifer Hansen, PT

    Jennifer Hansen, PT

    Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center Division: Physical Therapy

    After earning her BA degree in Biology from the University of Northern Iowa, Jennifer attended St. Ambrose University where she received her MPT degree. Jennifer collaborates with the entire therapy staff at the Waverly Health Center, as well as all other healthcare providers of her patients, to ensure that every patient she sees receives quality physical therapy care, are treated with dignity and respect, and are given the tools needed to reach their goals and maximum functional potential.

     

    Along with her husband and daughter, Jennifer supports the UNI Panthers and enjoys spending time with family while going on trips to Okoboji. Jennifer volunteers at the Oster Regent Theater Box Office, Sacred Heart Church, St. Edward's School, and is involved with the UNI Volleyball Golf Outing.

  • Jennifer Nus, PT, DPT

    Jennifer Nus, PT, DPT

    Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center Division: Physical Therapy

    Jennifer earned her BA in Biology in 2004 from the University of Northern Iowa and her Doctorate of Physical Therapy in 2006 from the University of Iowa. She specializes in the treatment of patients in both home health and skilled nursing facilities. Her primary focus is in geriatrics and home care patients. She recently completed her certificate in Oncology Rehabilitation from PORi located in Denver, CO and has started an outpatient cancer rehab program at WHC.

     

    Jennifer stays busy with her husband, their three children, and her volunteer commitments to the American Cancer Society, West Cedar Elementary, and St. Mary's Church. For fun, you will find Jennifer cheering on the Chicago Cubs, Iowa Hawkeyes, and the UNI Panthers.

  • Kristin Kahler, PT, DPT

    Kristin Kahler, PT, DPT

    Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center Division: Physical Therapy

    Kristin attended Waverly-Shell Rock High School and went on to get her BA in Biology in 2010 from Wartburg College before receiving her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree in 2013 from Des Moines University. Kristin enjoys working with a variety of patients from pediatrics and elderly patients to neurological and orthopedic patients. She is easy to find in the clinic because she is known for being loud and talkative at times. She is also known to not do a great job at counting repetitions during exercises so if you're one of her patients, you may need to count your exercise repetitions for her!

     

    When Kristin and her husband aren't playing with their twin daughters and dog, you can find them volunteering alongside the Wartburg College Men's and Women's Tennis Teams while serving as "family friends" for two Wartburg College International Students. Kristin and her husband are always looking for ways to stay involved in the community and their alma mater Wartburg College. When it comes to sports, Kristin cheers on the Iowa Hawkeyes, St. Louis Cardinals, and the Green Bay Packers.

  • Leah Thier, PT

    Leah Thier, PT

    Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center Division: Physical Therapy

    Leah earned her BSES from Saint Louis University in May of 1995 and her MPT in December 1996. Her primary work is focused on inpatient acute and skilled care at the Waverly Health Center as well as outpatient care at Waverly Clinic for all pediatric, geriatric, and amputee patients. Her approach to treatment in both settings is always positive with a great sense of humor and a team approach to patient care.

     

    Leah was born and raised in Waverly and has previously been employed at Jefferson Memorial Hospital in Crystal City, Missouri and Iowa Health System in Des Moines, Iowa. Leah is married with two children and has a service dog who provides Animal Assisted Therapy at Taylor Therapy and WHC. In her spare time, Leah volunteers as the IPTA Board of Directors for NE Iowa District and cheers on the W-SR Go-Hawks and the St. Louis Cardinals.

  • Michael Kaus, PT

    Michael Kaus, PT

    Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center, Sumner Clinic Division: Physical Therapy

    Michael Kaus graduated from Bemidji State University with a BS Teaching Degree in Biology and received a certificate from the Mayo Clinic Program in Physical Therapy. You can find Michael working at our Sumner and Waverly locations as a staff physical therapist. Michael enjoys working with people of all ages and specializes in orthopedic injuries. He is truly interested in getting to know each of his patients during their recovery.

     

    Michael and his wife have six grown children with five living in different states. He and his family have a lot of vacation destinations and enjoy spending time with their 10 grandchildren. Michael also greatly enjoys volunteering his time as a caregiver for elderly parents as well as greeting and participating as a communion server at his church.

  • Ryan Chizek, PT, DPT

    Ryan Chizek, PT, DPT

    Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center, Nashua Therapy, Parkersburg Clinic, Sumner Clinic Division: Physical Therapy

    Ryan graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 2008 with a Bachelor's Degree in Nutritional Sciences. He continued his education at the University of Iowa then graduated in 2011 with a Doctorate of Physical Therapy Degree. Ryan works as a physical therapist at our Waverly offices, but also assists at the Parkersburg, Sumner, and Nashua locations when they need an extra hand.

     

    Ryan is married to Ashley, a fellow Physical Therapist employed at Taylor Physical Therapy. They share one son, as well as one dog who rules the house. Ryan and his family are new to the Cedar Valley and are looking forward to getting to know the community. From locating the best fishing holes to cheering on the Minnesota Vikings, St. Louis Cardinals, and the Mizzou Tigers, Ryan and his family know how to have a good time.

  • Shelby Walsten, PT, DPT, ATC

    Shelby Walsten, PT, DPT, ATC

    Physical Therapist, Certified Athletic Trainer, Manager

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center, Nashua Therapy Division: Physical Therapy

    Shelby attended the University of Northern Iowa and graduated with a BA Degree in Athletic Training. In 2009. She later earned her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from Des Moines University. Shelby works at both the Waverly and Nashua clinics as a physical therapist and enjoys offering outreach services to Nashua-Plainfield high school students with sports injuries. Her personal experience with a torn ACL in high school is what triggered her interest and passion for physical therapy. Understanding her patient's injury or condition, providing individualized, hands-on treatment, and getting people back to their daily routines are what Shelby enjoys most about her job. Shelby is also a women's health therapist that treats pelvic floor dysfunction, pelvic pain, and core strength.

     

    Shelby shares two children and one dog with her husband. They enjoy their time outside and watching UNI Panthers and Iowa Hawkeyes sporting events.

  • Nathan Folkerts PT, DPT

    Nathan Folkerts PT, DPT

    Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Nashua Therapy Division: Physical Therapy

    Nathan holds an Undergraduate Degree from the University of Northern Iowa as well as a Graduate Degree from Des Moines University. He works at our Nashua Therapy Clinic as a physical therapist specializing in outpatient orthopedics. Nathan enjoys working with all types of patients, surgical or non-surgical, and has a special interest in the treatment of patients who suffer from back or shoulder pain.

     

    Nathan has three wonderful children with his wife, as well as a family dog. You can expect Nathan to be rooting for his favorite teams, the UNI Panthers, and the Iowa Hawkeyes.

  • Julie Eddy, PT, DPT

    Julie Eddy, PT, DPT

    Physical Therapist

    Locations Served: Parkersburg Clinic Division: Physical Therapy

    With a Bachelor's Degree in Biology from the University of Northern Iowa, a Master's Degree in Physical Therapy from the University of Iowa, and a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from Des Moines University, physical therapist Julie Eddy brings valuable knowledge to her patients. She enjoys working to improve the quality of life of her patients by getting to know them and their personal needs. Her belief is if patients have confidence in her, they can work together to develop a plan to meet all their goals. Julie works with a diverse range of patients and diagnoses and believes that the correct diagnosis is a key step in developing the proper care plan for her patients. 

     

    Julie enjoys spending time with family, friends, her husband, and their three children in her free time. She also loves a good book, outdoor adventures, traveling, running, coffee, and yoga. Julie is an active member of the Parkersburg United Methodist Church, where she is a Sunday School Teacher and Sunday School Board Member. She also serves as a youth soccer coach, and a community board member for youth soccer. She and her family follow Iowa Football, Iowa and UNI basketball, and the Parkersburg Falcons.

  • Sports Medicine

  • Destry Sperfslage, ATC, CSCS

    Destry Sperfslage, ATC, CSCS

    Director of Athletic Training and Sports Medicine, Certified Athletic Trainer and Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist

    Locations Served: Waverly Health Center Division: Sports Medicine

    In 2012, Destry graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a B.A. in Athletic Training. He then went on to attend Southern Illinois University where he graduated with an M.S. in Kinesiology. Destry works as the Athletic Trainer for the W-SR High School. As the school's primary sports medicine caregiver, he specializes in the prevention, recognition, assessment, physical evaluation, management, treatment, and physical reconditioning of athletic injuries. Destry is also a resource for directing plan of care following sports medicine-related injuries. He also helps manage the Sports Performance programs in the advancement of an athlete's physical capability while decreasing the likelihood of injury through Taylor Physical Therapy. 

     

    In Destry's free time, he enjoys being outdoors with his wife and their English bulldog. He also enjoys volunteering at his local church, working with local outdoor federations in conservation management, and introducing the youth in the community to hunting and the outdoors.

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