John Horne

CPO, CPed.

All Locations

John has over 20 years experience in the prosthetics and orthotics field and is certified by the American Board for Certification (ABC) in prosthetics, orthotics and pedorthics. John has completed the Prosthetic/Orthotic Certification Course at Northwestern University. Prior to founding Independence Prosthetics – Orthotics, John worked at the Hughston Sports Medicine Hospital in Columbus, Georgia and also treated patients at the Roosevelt Warm Springs institute in Georgia, a well-known polio treatment center founded by Franklin D. Roosevelt. In addition, he completed clinical training at Alfred I. DuPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Delaware and managed offices in Philadelphia for three Philadelphia hospitals.


At the age of 15, John was diagnosed with bone cancer and underwent an amputation below the knee to remove the tumor. His personal experience with prosthetics led to an interest in the field, an internship in an orthotics laboratory and, ultimately, the founding of Independence Prosthetics – Orthotics. He enjoys outdoor camping and adaptive snow skiing. He has bungee jumped, biked nearly 100 miles to the beach and skydived—all as an amputee.


For John, the best part of the job is making a positive difference in the lives of others and working with a team of dedicated professionals with high standards for quality service and workmanship.

Andrew Dirks

Operations Director

All Locations

Andrew graduated from the University of Delaware in 2018 with a degree in Biomedical Engineering. Before joining the Independence team, Andrew spent a year developing an O&P Tech company along-side President John Horne and Sean Walker, focused on developing innovative and affordable Orthotic and Prosthetic solutions to better serve our patients. The start-up was the result of a University project to design a safer way for lower-mobility amputees with single-axis manual locking knee joints to transition to and from the seated position. The project resulted in the design of a novel, patent-pending, prosthetic knee joint and the birth of Empowered Technologies LLC. Andrew's role at Independence is to aid in tracking performance of the clinics and stream-lining processes both holistically and locally. Outside of work, Andrew enjoys spending his free time with family and friends and remaining active through outdoor activities such as sailing and adult league sports.

Jocelyn Wong Neill


STAR Campus

Jocelyn is a Certified Prosthetist-Orthotist (CPO) and the clinical director of our STAR Campus office in Newark, specializing in lower limb prosthetics. She hails from California and learned about the prosthetics profession as a research intern in college, and while racing alongside athletes who used prosthetic legs in local triathlons.

She graduated from Georgia Tech’s MSPO program in 2006 and did her residency training at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas and at Gary Berke Prosthetics (affiliated with Stanford University Hospital). She has the unique distinction of competing as a professional triathlete (swim/bike/run) on an international pro team, specializing in the Ironman distance, from 2009-2011. While training and racing overseas, she made the time to volunteer at prosthetic medical missions with the Physicians for Peace chapter in the Philippines and the Prostheses Foundation of Thailand. As an Independence Prosthetics-Orthotics employee, she had the opportunity to serve as volunteer team leader for Healing the Children’s annual trip to El Salvador in both 2011 and 2012, providing orthotic care to hundreds of pediatric patients in the course of one week.

Jocelyn originally joined the Independence Prosthetics-Orthotics team in 2011 as a CPO and later had a chance to work as a contract prosthetist at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, MD from 2013-2014. At Walter Reed, she helped injured servicemembers (typically those with multiple amputations) return to high activity levels. Through her experiences in both clinical prosthetics and competitive athletics, Jocelyn is able help patients set and achieve the highest goals they desire. In 2015, Jocelyn returned to Independence armed with the knowledge and experience to bring the same level of care to Delaware’s prosthetic population, providing them with best-in-class prosthetic solutions, advanced prosthetic technologies, and the clinical and personal support to achieve their mobility goals.

Her passion for endurance sports and understanding of the therapeutic value of exercise ties in well as she works to provide the latest prosthetic designs for both everyday activity and sport. Her favorite part of working at Independence Prosthetics-Orthotics is encouraging patients to be more active and participating at various sports clinics put on by Independence. While she has retired from professional triathlon, she continues to stay active by competing in local running events and playing with her puppy “Aero”.

John Given

CO, Certified Orthotist


While working at a durable medical equipment company, John had the opportunity to take an orthotics course. Now 30 years later he is an ABC Certified Orthotist. John likes being part of the Independence Team because “it is a growing company that offers the latest technology while focusing on patient care”. John is a Life Member of the Greenwood Volunteer Fire Company where he is an EMT. In his free time, he enjoys working on automobiles, doing yard work and spending time with his family.

Jennifer Motylinski



Jennifer was introduced to the Orthotics/Prosthetics industry while pursuing a bachelors in Materials Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins. She began shadowing at local clinics which solidified her desire to work in patient care. She earned a Masters of Prosthetics and Orthotics at UT Southwestern in Dallas, Texas. Since graduating, she completed her residency and passed her board exams all while working at Independence Prosthetics-Orthotics. Outside of the office, she enjoys participating in adult sports leagues including field hockey and corn hole, cooking, and spending time with family.

Cassandra Gorman



Cassie came to Independence Prosthetics-Orthotics after receiving a master’s degree in prosthetics and orthotics from the University of Hartford and a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering from the University of Rochester. She was drawn to Delaware by the research being done at the University of Delaware, but quickly discovered a passion for patient care.

Outside of work she enjoys cheering for Syracuse University’s men’s basketball team, being outdoors and volunteering with Team Red White and Blue.

Ronnell Upshur



Ronnell is from the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area and currently resides in Delaware. He is a 20 year Navy veteran who completed numerous tours of duty both domestic and overseas as a dental technician and hospital corpsman.

After retiring from the military, he enrolled in and completed a B.S. degree in Health administration at Eastern Michigan University. After graduating from the program, Ronnell applied for and was accepted into the Vocational Rehabilitation Program for veterans where he was able to complete a M.S. degree in Orthotics and Prosthetics. He also has A.S degree in Applied Health Sciences

Ronnell joined the Independence Prosthetics-Orthoics team in 2015. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his family, participating in community activities and support his hometown sporting teams.

Michael Egan

C. Ped, CFo


Michael was raised in Swarthmore, PA and graduated from Widener University.  He started his career as a Certified Pedorthist in 2004 at Foot Solutions, a specialty retail store. With an expertise in providing proper fitting shoes as well as custom foot orthotics using Amfit's patented electronic 3D scanner, he was able to offer solutions to common foot ailments such as plantar fasciitis, fallen arches, arthritis and heel spurs. In 2007, he became a certified practitioner of MASS Posture Theory; a comprehensive alternative theory to Neutral Position theory and methodology.

In 2012, Michael joined Independence Prosthetics Orthotics and specialized in short articulating AFO's, custom foot orthotics, diabetic foot complications, partial foot amputations and custom molded shoes.  In 2017, he accepted a position in Pittsburgh with Delatorre Orthotics and Prosthetics, Inc., and became a Certified Fitter-orthotics.  In 2018, wanting to be closer to family, Michael decided to leave Pittsburgh and re-joined the IPO team.

In his spare time he enjoys spending time with his family at the Jersey shore, hiking in the Poconos and jogging on weekends.  

Melissa Benedetti



Melissa is a Certified Prosthetist-Orthotist (CPO) hailing originally from South Jersey.  After graduating from Cabrini College with a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science, she decided to continue her education at the University of Hartford, where she earned a Master’s degree in Prosthetics and Orthotics.  She completed her residency in the Mid Atlantic area of Washington, DC.

A tri-sport collegiate athlete, Melissa was first introduced to the field of orthotics after suffering an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear while playing basketball in high school.  She became motivated to pursue a career in orthotics and prosthetics after seeing the positive influence a CPO can have on an individual’s quality of life.

In her free time, Melissa enjoys outdoor activities such as running, biking, and hiking as well as cheering on her favorite Philadelphia sport’s teams.

Rachel Beeson

RN/Prosthetic Liaison

STAR Campus

Rachel originally joined Independence in October 2009. During her time as an administrative assistant she was inspired by the work being done around her finding that she had the desire and passion for being more hands-on with patients. With tremendous support from her family and IPO, Rachel returned to school for a degree in Nursing, graduating in December 2014. As a Registered Nurse, Rachel practiced nursing in a few different settings, including an inpatient rehabilitation hospital and inpatient hospice care. 


After 2 years of practice, she knew her heart was in prosthetic patient care and in March 2017, Rachel rejoined the Independence team. As a Clinical Prosthetic Liaison Rachel brings her previous knowledge and new experiences to continue to help patients on their journey. Rachel has a true passion for helping others; interacting with patients, practitioners, physicians and physical therapists daily, continuing to learn and grow in the field of prosthetics. She finds that following the process from start to finish is very rewarding, with a positive patient outcome and experience always being the main goal. Outside of work, Rachel enjoys time with her family and friends. She loves going to the beach, traveling, going on bike rides and working out. Her favorite down time activity is snuggling with her pup Allie.

Joseph Merkel

COA, CFo, Lab Technician


Joe entered the field of Orthotics and Prosthetics in 1991 as an Orthotic Technician. He has continued his education and has earned his Certificaton as a Certified Orthotic Assistant, and a Certified Orthotic Fitter. Joe proudly continues working with the Independence team. Joe spends his free time with his family, friends, and church. He also enjoys playing, recording and teaching guitar.

Stephen Fine

CPA, CFo, Prosthetic Technician

STAR Campus

Stephen has worked in the Prosthetics and Orthotics field for more than 29 years, since losing his leg in a bike accident. 

Stephen works hard to encourage and guide fellow amputees through what can be a very frustrating process to obtain the right fit that will allow the patient to live life to the fullest. For him, the best part of his job is being able to instill confidence and hope in the patients he meets. He also has done volunteer work for countless non-profit organizations, including the Shriners Hospital in Philadelphia, the Hospital for Special Surgeries in New York, A.S.P.I.R.E. Learning Organizations and as a patient demonstrator for Advanced C-Leg courses.

David Ford

Lab Technician


David has worked in the Prosthetics and Orthotics field for 17 years. He worked at A.I. Dupont Children's hospital for 12 years before joining the IndependenceTeam. The best part of the job has always been getting people back on their feet. David spends his free time with his wife and two children. He also enjoys playing recreational football, basketball, softball, and coaching baseball.

James A. Edwards

CPA, CTP, Lab Technician


Jim likes working with his hands. After working with John in the past at other practices, the timing was right when he needed a tech and Jim stepped up, looking for another opportunity to work with John again. Jim enjoys the fact that my work directly helps individuals and families throughout the area and beyond. The diversity of work done at IPO keeps life fresh every day.


On his days off, Jim is an avid motorcyclist often putting more miles on my Harley then his truck. He enjoys participating in charity rides for good causes.

Sean Walker

Lab Technician


Sean joined Independence in 2015 in September because he likes creating with his hands. Being a technician for Independence allows him to make things that help people as well as making things for human enhancement. When Sean has free time, his is an active member in the Maker's Movement. Recently he has started to dabble in 3D printing by using his home model. 

Annette Dawson

Office Manager


All Locations

Annette joined Independence in April 2015.  Before coming to IPO, Annette worked for 25 years at Invista (formerly DuPont). There she specialized in customer service, accounting, and procurement.  After all those years in a big corporation, Annette wanted to change career paths and use her experience to help make a difference in the lives of others.   She chose Independence since it was a small family owned company that did a great deal for their employee’s and others in the community.   Annette’s role at Independence is to oversee the day to day operations to facilitate the best possible care for our patients.  In her free time, Annette likes to travel with her family, play cards and relax.

Jennifer Demby



Jennifer describes the way she got into the Prosthetic and Orthotic field as, “sheer luck”.  She came to IPO with a medical background and continues to reinforce her knowledge.  While working with Independence Jennifer completed the Trulife Orthotic Fitters course with Diabetic Foot Outline course and Live Lab at St. Petersburg College in Florida. She plans in the near future to take the Orthotic Fitters Exam.  Outside of work, Jennifer enjoys spending time with her five children, shopping and going out to eat.  When asked what she likes most about her job she reports, “We have the best clients!”  She also notes that she loves her coworkers and appreciates their work ethic.

Lauren Ogden

Administrative Assistant


Lauren came to Independence with a six year background in the dental field.  She has achieved her certification in Dental Radiology.  She loves her two children and has a love of animals.  A goal she has is to travel the world with her family.  Lauren enjoys meeting new clients everyday and working with such great staff and excellent teamwork.  She hopes to continue to grow her O&P knowledge with Independence.

Evin Yockey

Administrative Assistant

Evin Yockey has been with Independence since 2013. She is an Administrative Assistant and is a big team player. She received her national insurance specialist certification from Dawn Career Institute in 2012 and is up to date on her certification. Evin assists in numerous administrative duties and enjoys helping her co workers get difficult issues resolved.

In her spare time she enjoys being a soccer mom! She loves to go on hiking adventures with her son at the local state park.

Rachael Klevis

Administrative Assistant


Rachael has been with Independence since 2014. She came to us with over 10 years of experience in administration including her time as a licensed insurance agent and later as the secretary of a decorative retail store in Newark, DE. If you asked her what she loves best about IPO it would be interacting with patients. “Getting to meet great people that have overcome struggle and continue to achieve their goals is uplifting and very rewarding.” To further her desire to help others, Rachael is a part time student at Delaware Technical Community College Stanton campus studying to become a Registered Nurse. Outside of work she enjoys spending time with family and friends, gardening and taking on new home improvement projects. 

Carly Cagle

Administrative Assistant


Carly joined Independence in October of 2014. She enjoys working with such a great team of people and feels fortunate to work for a company that does so much not only for their employees but their patients and the outside community as well. Outside of work, Carly enjoys spending her extra time with her two children, family and friends!

Noreen Spangler

Administrative Assistant

STAR Campus

Noreen joined Independence in November 2015. She brought many years of experience and organization skills with her from previous roles. She is married and has a daughter who is currently studying to be an Occupational Therapist. Her outside interests include family, camping, traveling, and spending time with friends.

Kristina Drago

Billing/Administrative Assistant


After many years in the car industry, Kristina has started a new journey in the O & P field. She has found enjoyment in meeting new patients and her coworkers in this exciting field. When she is not at work she spends time with her two wonderful children and loving husband. They have a passion for all sports and outside activities!

Kathryn (Katie) Britton

Administrative Assistant, CFo


Katie has been with Independence since June of 2017. She graduated from The University of Sciences in Philadelphia, with a Bachelor’s degree of Health Sciences. Katie was introduced to the Prosthetic and Orthotics field as a result of shadowing experience at Alfred I. DuPont Hospital for Children. Katie became an American Board for Certification (ABC) Certified Fitter of Orthotics in the Spring of 2018. She plans to apply to an O&P Master's Program in the near future. It has been a rewarding experience for Katie to be part of a team that makes such a difference in the lives of people and families that Independence supports.

In her spare time, Katie enjoys spending time with family and friends at the Jersey shore and likes to travel as much as possible.

JT Scott

Inventory/Office Assistant


All locations

Originally a patient of Independence, JT joined our team in January of 2017. He started full time to help manage IPO's inventory due to his experience in inventory management and customer service. In his spare time, JT enjoys the gym, hands-on projects, and keeping himself busy.

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