Our Team

Music Therapy St. Pete is proud to work as a small team to best provide the highest-quality care across the greater Saint Petersburg area. Our team is composed of some amazing therapists with specific training and diverse clinical experiences. We are members of the American Music Therapy Association and have earned the credentials of Music Therapist - Board Certified (MT-BC) through national examination. MTSP also runs an internship program. We accept premier students on a rolling admissions basis.

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James Riley, MM, MT-BC. Program director.

James was born and raised in Key West, Florida, where he taught piano and guitar to underprivileged children through the Bahama Village Music Program. He earned his bachelor’s degree and Master’s of Music (MM) in music therapy from the Florida State University, where he met his wonderful wife, Katy. James worked in many medical and mental health settings before accepting a full-time teaching position at FSU. Several years later, Katy and James moved to St. Pete and fell in love with the local community and the whole Tampa Bay area. James is the founder, program director, and internship supervisor of MTSP.

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Sarah Levison, MT-BC.      Music therapist - board certified.

Sarah was born and raised in Sarasota, Florida. She graduated with honors from Florida State University, where she received her Bachelor’s of Music in Music Therapy. Sarah has loved singing since she was a toddler and enjoys sharing her passion for music with children. Throughout her high school years she was a member of the Sarasota Youth Opera, performing in both youth and main stage operas. Sarah completed her music therapy internship at Easterseals Midwest where she worked primarily with children with ASD. Over the past few summers, she has enjoyed working at Dream Oaks Camp for children with special needs. Sarah is thrilled to be a member of the Music Therapy St. Pete team!

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Kaela Funke-Stahlhut, MT-BC. Music therapist - board certified.

Kaela received her undergraduate degree from Drury University in Springfield, MO in Music Therapy and Spanish. She then went on to intern with Music Therapy St. Pete, LLC during the 2019-2020 school year. Kaela finished her internship with MTSP and returned back home to Missouri to be reunited with her husband, Jake, and their pupper, Skylar. After living through a year facing the pandemic and multiple other obstacles, Kaela, Jake, and Skylar decided to return to Florida! Kaela absolutely loves working with multiple different populations but has a soft spot for children and older adults. If you see Kaela around and want to strike up a conversation, she loves forming bonds with new people! Kaela loves jokes and encourages the sharing of them always.