Who We Are

We are a global organization that employs a specialized team to resolve the behavioral, intellectual, social, emotional, cognitive and academic needs of individuals and families. Our team members provide support and education anywhere clients need us – from New York to California, Shanghai to Zurich. Our team of Family Architects consists of hundreds dedicated individuals who are committed to providing premiere individualized services. Our clientele is comprised of successful individuals, families, and companies. Clients seek our guidance, education and motivation to help address and improve the conflicts that unfortunately crack through the foundations of everyday life.

Our aim is to help families rebuild their communication and functional systems to produce an environment that promotes successful wellbeing and behavior.

Our Leadership Team

Ilana Kukoff, Ph.D.
CEO Founder and Educational Entrepreneur

Ilana Kukoff is Cognition Builders Founder and CEO. As Founder and CEO of Cognition Builders, Ilana concentrates exclusively on business development. Recognizing that the conversation surrounding family wellbeing too often ended, Ilana Kukoff responded with Cognition Builders. An educational entrepreneur, Ilana Kukoff has spoken about her work for UCLA, for TEDx, and for National Public Radio.

Most recently, she is a parent expert for Access Hollywood, and is the proud mother of two teens who have been featured in the New York Times, Seventeen Magazine and on ABC.

In conjunction with Jessica Yuppa, Cognition Builders Director of Curricula & Assistant Clinical Director, Ilana authored “Say This, Not That To Your Teenage Daughter,” published by Andrews McMeel and based on the work of Cognition Builders. Click here for more information.

For more from our CEO and Founder, Ilana Kukoff:

Access Hollywood


Sarah Shaw Lopano, M. Ed., BCBA
COO & Clinical Director

As COO & Clinical Director, Sarah supervises and consults with Family Architects to help design and oversee individualized programs that she ensures are implemented with the highest degree of fidelity. Additionally, she assists in the design and development of new programs tailored to meet our clients evolving needs, and with hiring and training new team members. In her role as a Family Architect, Sarah works directly with clients to systematically modify behavior and language as it occurs through education and contingencies. She works to arrange occasions for her clients that support their individual growth and family’s dynamics.

Erica Frankel, LMSW
Assistant Clinical Director & Director of the Family Food Architect Program

As Assistant Clinical Director, Erica creates customized programs for our clients and oversees the implementation and execution of each program.  Erica updates programs to always meet the needs of our clients, as clients begin to learn, master, and generalize skills. In addition, Erica provides daily supervision to our Family Architects and Cognitive Companions to ensure programs are executed consistently and effectively. In her role as Director of the Family Food Architect Program, Erica manages a team of Family Food Architects, to help individuals and families achieve their nutritional and healthy lifestyle goals.

Jessica Yuppa Huddy, M.S.
Director of Curricula & Assistant Clinical Director

In her role as Director of Curricula, Jessica develops novel programs and customizes Cognition Builders’ expansive repertoire to personally suit each client’s specific needs. Jessica elects the programs and protocols for clients, developing and implementing behavioral intervention strategies. As Senior Assistant Clinical Director, Jessica oversees client programs, adapting them to evolve with clients’ needs and growth. She also works directly with clients to improve executive functioning skills and decrease anxiety through language and behavior modification. In conjunction with Ilana Kukoff — Cognition Builders’ founder and CEO — Jessica co-authored “Say This, Not That To Your Teenage Daughter,” published by Andrews McMeel and based on the work of Cognition Builders. Click here for more information.

Shir Zion, M.A.
Director of Research, Curricula, and Training for the Family Food Architect Program
As Director of Research, Curricula, and Training for the Family Food Architect Program, Shir plays an active role in identifying relevant, evidence-based and behavioral, research to add to our award-winning curricula. The curricula she develops fits each of our clients’ unique needs as they relate to increasing healthy food selection and well-being. Additionally, Shir oversees Family Food Architects’ training to ensure that our clients’ goals of behavior change towards food selection are achieved
Katherine Moran, B.A.
Director of Family Affairs

In her role as Director of Family Operations, Katherine identifies the goals of individual clients, and implements intervention strategies to address concerning behavior. Katherine also provides continual feedback and guidance to Family Architects that are on-site, and is involved in training and recruiting. Katherine customizes curricula to fit a client’s individual needs. On-site, Katherine resolves social and emotional issues by offering behavior and language substitutions and pointing out maladaptive forms of interaction and thinking. Additionally, Katherine restructures the daily lives of her clients to promote time management and organizational skills.

Benny Karimyar, B.A.
Senior Family Architect

Benny is a senior Family Architect who has been working with Cognition Builders since 2011. She reworks family structure by identifying and repairing the isolated issues buried deep in their foundation. She applies our award-winning, solution-based curriculum, and counsels clients who are struggling with emotional, behavioral, social, academic, and/or cognitive related challenges in order to promote positive change. Using her knowledge of solution-based intervention, Benny helps clients rethink their common daily actions by teaching substitute language and behavior. Through tailored needs based on current assessments, Benny helps clients develop the skills necessary to tackle all aspects and areas of life.

Rachel Hannibal, M.Ed., BCBA
Senior Family Architect & Team Supervisor
In her role as Team Supervisor, Rachel designs and oversees individualized programs based on the specific needs of each client or family. She also provides continual feedback and guidance to Family Architects on site to ensure effective and consistent implementation of each program. She designs programs and contingencies to transform problematic behaviors based on their function.

As a Senior Family Architect, Rachel teaches skills explicitly and systematically through immersion, while supporting clients in their natural environment. She provides language and behavior replacement in real time in the home, school or community to promote the development of appropriate emotional, cognitive, and social skills.

Building Families Globally

Build Your Own Healthy Family

Contact us now and begin your journey with Cognition Builders.