Councils and Committees
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Councils and Committees

As a non-profit membership organization our volunteers are critical to our success. Each council/ committee is developed to further our mission and their work ties back to a strategic priority.

Below is a listing of Lamaze International Councils and Committees. If you are a Lamaze member and interested in participating in our leadership, learn more about volunteering

Council and Committee Rosters

Executive Committee

Purpose: To act on behalf of the Board of Directors when the board is not in session and within the scope established in the Lamaze International Bylaws.

  • Tanya Cawthorne, President
  • Alice Turner, Past President
  • Kacy Cutler, President-Elect
  • Jessica Deeb, Secretary/Treasurer


Accreditation Council Governing Body

Purpose: Serves as the standard-setting body for accreditation of Lamaze Childbirth Educator Programs and outside organizations seeking Lamaze contact hours for educational offerings; makes policy decisions relating to accreditation matters.

  • Mary Healy, Member
  • Michele Ondeck, Member
  • Gemma Wilson, Member
  • Deborah Woolley, Member
  • Marilyn Curl, Board Liaison


Certification Council Governing Body

Purpose: Serves as the standard-setting body for Lamaze certification and makes policy decisions relating to certification matters.

  • Elizabeth (Betsy) Armstrong, Certification Council Chair
  • Betsy Armstrong, Chair / Public Member
  • Judy Lothian, Exam Construction Chair
  • Wendy Budin, Item Writing Committee Chair
  • Cara Terreri, At-Large Member
  • Debra McAllister, At-Large Member
  • Barbara Hotelling, At-Large Member
  • Eileen DiFrisco At-Large Member
  • Wendy Trees Shiffer, Education Council Chair (non-voting)


Education Council Governing Body

Purpose: Responsible for developing, implementing, and evaluating professional education programs that promote childbirth educator training and development. Makes policy decisions related to professional education programs.

  • Wendy Trees Shiffer, Chair
  • Meghan Bardwell, Continuing Education Chair
  • Joy Kusek, Parent Education Chair
  • Jamie Wasson, Member At-Large
  • Jessica Deeb, Board Liaison
  • Robin Douthit, Board Liaison


Finance Committee

Purpose: Makes recommendations to the Board of Directors regarding the annual budget, selection of financial audit firm and investment manager, financial policies and transfers.

  • Jessica Deeb, Secretary/Treasurer, Chair
  • Tanya Cawthorne, President 
  • Kacy Cutler, President Elect
  • Alice Turner, Past President
  • Robin Douthit, Elected Director-at-Large


Search Committee

Purpose: Actively seeks out leadership candidates for the Board of Directors and other key leadership positions, reviews their qualifications, and recommends candidates for the election slate or appointment in accordance with the Lamaze International Bylaws and procedures established by the Board of Directors.

  • Christen Sadler, Past President, Chair
  • Shauna Lively, Elected Director
  • Kathryn Konrad, General Member
  • Ambar Rivera, General Member
  • Renece Waller-Wise, General Member

Research Working Group

Purpose: The Lamaze Childbirth Education Research Initiative was developed to facilitate research into childbirth education that investigates: Evaluation of childbirth education accessibility, effectiveness, acceptability, return on investment and quality; Best practices for delivering and receiving childbirth education; Parent knowledge of evidence-based birth and breastfeeding practices. 

  • Jennifer A. Vanderlaan, Chair
  • Susan Givens
  • Leslie Arnott
  • Jeannette Crenshaw
  • Barbara Hotelling
  • Judy Lothian
  • Penny Simkin
  • Kate Levett
  • Joyce K. Edmonds


Diversity + Outreach

Diversity and inclusion are strategic priorities for Lamaze International. This committee has been established to doing something meaningful and transformative with community-led action and leadership with the goal of building a diverse Lamaze membership that is a reflection of the communities we wish to serve.

  • Tara Owens Shuler, Chair
  • LaToya Murray-Johnson, Member
  • Tara Shuler, Member
  • Kate Luxion, Member
  • Taiwo Ajao, Member
  • Robin Pitts, Member
  • Chama Woydak, Member
  • Ngozi Tibbs, Board Liaison
  • Mary Duke, Board Liaison


Advocacy + Collaboration

Advocacy and collaboration have long been strategic priorities for Lamaze International. This committee has been established to focus on advocating for safe and healthy birth practices through access to evidence-based childbirth education for all expecting parents on local, national and international levels.

  • Tonya Daniel, Chair
  • Meghan Bardwell, Member
  • Michelle Becker, Member
  • Liz DeMaere, Member
  • Sujata Gami, Member
  • Melissa Gonzalez, Member
  • Catherine McWherter, Member
  • Sarah Paksima, Member
  • Lesley Pascuzzi, Member
  • Blake Slusser, Member
  • Crystal Sada, Member
  • Sherri Wilkerson, Member
  • Jill Wodnick, Member
  • Brenda Kirkpatrick, Board Liaison


International Committee

  • Liz DeMaere, Chair
  • Elena Carrillo, Member
  • Marjaana Siivola, Member
  • Nancy Bonilla, Member
  • Megha Khanduja, Member
  • Zuzana Nadova, Member
  • Naseera Hoorzook, Member
  • Teresa Navarro, Board Liasion


Continuing Education Committee

  • Meghan Bardwell, Chair
  • Andrea Lythgoe, Member
  • Deborah Woolley, Member
  • Renece Waller-Wise, Member
  • Jimena Guarque, Member
  • Melissa DeFoor, Member


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