Kimberly Seals Allers is an award-winning journalist, five-time author, international speaker, strategist, and advocate for maternal & infant health. A former senior editor at ESSENCE and writer at FORTUNE magazine, Kimberly is a leading voice on the racial and socio-cultural complexities of birth, breastfeeding, and motherhood. She is the founder of Irth, a new "Yelp-like" app for Black and brown parents to address bias and racism in maternity and infant care. Kimberly also created Birthright, a podcast about joy and healing in Black birth that centers on positive Black birth stories as a tool in the fight for birth justice and reverses the narrative of negative statistics common in mainstream media coverage of Black maternal health. Learn more at KimberlySealsAllers.com.
Cristina is a midwife and Harvard educated Doctor of Public Health. In over 20 years she has worked to improve access to reproductive rights, choice and care in Central and South America, Mexico, Haiti, Afghanistan, and recently in United States.
Stephanie is an award-winning, international best-selling author, inspirational speaker and thought leader on a mission to help others realize that connecting with our sixth sense can not only enhance our lives, but can very well save them. Stephanie’s background and experiences allow her to connect with diverse audiences, whether through her book, speaking engagements, or media appearances. Prior to sharing her own story in her best-selling book, 37 Seconds, Stephanie enjoyed a decades-long career helping others share their stories as an Emmy-Nominated TV Producer. In her personal life, Stephanie is a wife and mother with a deep appreciation of her Latina-Jewish heritage. With her story inspiring millions of people around the globe, Stephanie now dedicates her time to speaking and advocacy work, spreading awareness about positive doctor-patient communication, trauma recovery, and discovering meaning and purpose in our personal and professional lives.
Naima is an educator, consultant, doula, and founding director of For Your Birth. She trains birth workers, develops curricula for organizations, and serves on the board of directors for Lamaze International - a trusted leader in childbirth education. A published author and media contributor, Naima has also developed a specialty expertise in healing related to pregnancy loss.
Emily Bernet (she/her/hers) is a queer single mom to two little ones. She transitioned to being a birth educator and doula because of her own experiences during her pregnancies. Before entering the birth space, she worked in higher education and earned her Master of Adult Education. Big Fat Pregnancy gave her the opportunity to combine her two passions and help others feel prepared for all the unexpected things that occur during pregnancy and baby feeding. You can find her attending births, writing curriculum for our courses, or in her tiny chaos garden.
Ann-Marie has been serving the California perinatal community for nearly 15 years as a La Leche League Leader, lactation consultant, yoga instructor, birth & postpartum doula, and childbirth/parent educator. In the past decade she has used her wealth of knowledge, experience, and empathetic skills to educate and train doulas, nurses, and doctors in new ways to optimize their support of families. Ann-Marie is well known for blending scientific knowledge with thoughtful humor to help her learners make lifelong and mindful connections to the topic at hand. When Ann-Marie is not working with families or colleagues, you can find her walking with a group of friends, paddleboarding on the river, and dancing to music like nobody's watching.
Cyleste Collins is an Associate Professor of social work at Cleveland State University. Her work primarily focuses on health disparities, infant and maternal mortality prevention, community-engaged research, community/academic partnerships, and family housing instability. She earned her MSW and Ph.D in Social work from the University of Alabama and her MA in Psychology from the University of California.
Tracy Donegan is a renowned figure in the realm of midwifery and maternal health advocacy. With a wealth of experience as a Registered Midwife, doula trainer and childbirth educator Tracy has been a vocal global campaigner for enhancing maternity services since 2005. An accomplished author of five books and creator of several apps, Tracy is also an internationally recognized speaker on mindfulness, maternal health, breastfeeding, and positive birth experiences. Tracy resides in Texas with her husband and two sons.
Sue Ann has been studying yoga since 2012. Her passion is to help students feel stronger in their bodies and more connected to their hearts. Sue Ann holds a master’s in public health, 800 hour Vijnana Yoga Certificate, a 500 hour Yoga Alliance Certificate, and 85 hour Prenatal Yoga Teacher Certificate. Teaching private and group prenatal classes quickly became a passion. Throughout her own pregnancy, yoga and the yoga community were essential for Sue Ann. Prenatal Yoga strengthened her connection with her own body, her baby and her community. She feels honored to share these teachings and contribute to others’ transformational experiences.
Erika García es IBCLC, Consultora Certificada en Lactancia Materna por el Consejo Internacional de Certificación: International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBLCE). Estudió Educación Perinatal en la Universidad Anáhuac del Norte en la Ciudad de México donde obtuvo además las certificaciones de Lamaze International, LCCE y Doula de parto por DONA International. Con más de 18 años de experiencia ha preparado y acompañado a las mujeres y sus parejas en el embarazo, nacimiento y lactancia. Es directora y fundadora de ErikaDoula Powerful Birthing and Lactation Services por medio de la cual tiene oportunidad de apoyar a familias de manera presencial en El Paso Las Cruces y Cd. Juárez, México, con acompañamiento en el parto, dando consultas de lactancia a domicilio, clases de preparación para el nacimiento presenciales y en línea. Trabaja también para Mothers’ Milk Bank at Austin como parte del equipo de evaluación de donantes de leche. Fué coordinadora de lactancia y directora de WIC en el Centro de Salud Familiar La Fé en El Paso, TX. Fungió como representante de WIC en Las Palmas Medical Center para la obtención del Texas Ten Step Achievement de dicho hospital. Ha servido a su comunidad de El Paso,Texas/Juárez, como voluntaria en un centro de maternidad, es miembro fundador del Binational Breastfeeding Coalition, fué voluntaria en Baby Café. Miembro de ACCLAM, Asociación de Consultores Certificados en Lactancia Materna de México. Erika es mamá de dos hijos de 27 y 23 años, se interesó en esta carrera desde sus embarazos cuando ella tomó las clases de Lamaze y amamantó a sus dos hijos.
Christina (she/her) is the founder and co-owner of Big Fat Pregnancy. She is a fat, queer, chronically ill, mom of two who worked tirelessly to make sure her pregnancy experiences were as fat positive as possible and now helps other folks living in larger bodies do the same. As a doula and educator she believes deeply in combating anti-fat bias during pregnancy, birth and postpartum and shines a light on current research and evidence supporting size inclusive care.
Kathryn is an assistant professor of nursing at the University of Oklahoma Fran and Earl Ziegler College of Nursing. She is an experienced labor nurse and birth advocate with a long track record of working with doulas and other birth advocates. Her research centers on coping in the perinatal period and addressing maternal mortality.
Karen creates learning experiences built from her mindfulness-based embodiment practices that are essential to safe, compassionate and unbiased care delivery, while preventing burnout. Her 30-year career spans the intersections of care delivery and system design, training and mentorship models for birth workers, and health care quality improvement. Leveraging technology and the power of collaboration, she is working to improve access to pregnancy care support systems, while preserving the autonomy and sustainability for the doulas and providers that serve their communities.
While working as a certified nurse midwife and serving on numerous committees, she observed Black women were not being heard in the discussion of racial disparities in maternal and infant health. She co-founded Village of Healing, a community development organization focused on healing and empowering the village to eliminate social determinants of health and decrease disparities. Under that umbrella The Village of Healing Center was developed to deliver quality health care that meets the social and cultural needs of patients. She founded Dàna M. Langford Consulting, an enterprise focused on uplifting communities and addressing systemic injustices through education, professional coaching, and advocacy. With a host of experience working in hospital systems as a certified nurse midwife, for more than 14 years, Dàna is invested in serving the Black community. She brings clinical bedside and corporate boardroom experience coupled with an adherent passion for the eradication of racial disparities to her companies and the communities she serves.
Heather M. Rice is an Assistant Professor from Cleveland State University College of Health (School of Nursing). She is also a board-certified Pediatric Nurse Practitioner who specializes in child and adolescent psychiatry. Dr. Rice earned her PhD in Nursing Science and MSN from Case Western Reserve University in 2017. Dr. Rice is a passionate advocate for infant and maternal mortality prevention, birth equity, reproductive justice, toxic stress and mental wellness. She is committed to addressing health disparities working in partnership with the community organizations Birthing Beautiful Communities (BBC) and the Village of Healing Center (VOH).
Roxy is an experienced Birth and Postpartum Doula, Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator, Certified Perinatal Yoga Instructor and Licensed Massage Therapist. She finds her greatest joy in guiding families through intentional yoga practices that combine functional movement, childbirth education, and body literacy. She’s Co-Owner of Flow of Life Yoga where she teaches perinatal yoga classes and workshops that cultivate community, connection, and courage.
Allison is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (2006), Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator (2000), and doula (2000) in private practice providing in-home and virtual visits in New York City. She is one of the three founders of the Lactation Learning Collective, which offers education and support to those on the pathway toward certification as International Board Certified Lactation Consultants along with families in need of lactation support. She has trained childbirth educators as a Co-Director of the NYC Lamaze Childbirth Educator Program for two decades and is a past president of Lamaze International. Allison has represented Lamaze International as a delegate to the United States Breastfeeding Committee since 2004, and has served in various leadership and committee roles. Allison is a member of the New York City Breastfeeding Leadership Council, the New York Lactation Consultant Association, and an active La Leche League Leader. Prior to the birth of her first child, Allison was a political consultant and community organizer -- skills from that “past life” are useful in all aspects of her work in the birth world. She is a graduate of Syracuse University and mother of three formerly breastfed children.
Emily is the founder of 4th Trimester Fitness® Method, a company devoted to the physical and educational preparation for labor, birth and postpartum. Living internationally for most of her life, she is a South African trained nurse midwife, and has worked with more than 1000 families as a personal trainer, and birth doula in the United States. It has been her delight to combine her 30+ years of professional expertise to create a company culture devoted to “Improving Birth through Movement and Education”. She is a popular speaker known for her “hands-on-get-up-and-move” approach to sharing information and firmly believes that when you teach one, you reach many!
Robin is a birth doula trainer and professor of public health working to foster positive relationships with doulas and other healthcare professionals. Learn more at robineliseweiss.com.