The International Maternity Institute has an advisory board in place that assists in educating and supporting maternity professionals such as doulas, nurses, nannies, midwives, lactation consultants, sleep consultants, baby planners, greenproofers, greenbirth educators, and maternity consultants as they pursue certification. In addition to serving on staff and educating our students, these experts help raise awareness about the maternity industry to educate expecting and new families on the importance of selecting a certified, trained, and experienced maternity professional.
Each member of the advisory board excels in their fields of practice, and most important, is passionate about the maternity industry.
The International Maternity Institute is thankful for their dedication to our program and for their commitment in supporting our mission.
Dr. Stuart Fischbein MD FACOG, BAC
Stuart James Fischbein, MD is a Fellow of the American College of Obstetrics & Gynecology and a practicing obstetrician in Southern California. He is a graduate of the University of Minnesota Medical School and completed his residency training in OB/GYN at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, CA. He was board certified in 1989. While trained in the standard medical model of obstetrics he had the respect and vision to support the midwifery model of care and served as a backup consultant to many home and birthing center midwives for over 2 decades. In 1996 he founded The Woman’s Place for Health, Inc., a collaborative practice of Certified Nurse Midwives and Obstetrician in Ventura County California. This was an innovative model of care for pregnant women that combined the wisdom, nurturing and experience of both professions and allowed pregnant women the dignity of true informed consent and refusal of birth choices. Research has shown that the collaborative model has better overall outcomes for mothers and their babies.
In 2004, Dr. Fischbein co-authored, “Fearless Pregnancy, Wisdom & Reassurance from a Doctor, a Midwife and a Mom” www.fearlesspregnancy.net and in June of 2010 the book came out in its 2nd edition. Dr. Fischbein has become an outspoken advocate, yes even an activist, for the right of pregnant women and their families to determine their own birth choices based on evidence based medicine and the continuation of birthing options which are disappearing for reasons that are not always ethical (see his articles and blog at www.supportdrfischbein.com ). For his efforts he has been awarded the Doulas Association of Southern California (DASC) Physician of the year award twice and was the very first recipient of DASC’s lifetime achievement award in support of pregnant women. He has spoken at several conferences on the subject of vaginal birth after cesarean section and breech and has been featured in several YouTube educational videos. Dr. Fischbein is a quoted contributor to Ricki Lake’s web site www.mybestbirth.com and on the advisory board of My Birth Team. www.mybirthteam.com
Finding that advocating for the ethical treatment of pregnant women does not always meet with the support it deserves in the organized medical community, Dr Fischbein now works directly with home birthing midwives www.birthinginstincts.com & www.birthsanctuary.com and offers hope for those women who cannot find supportive practitioners for VBAC, twin and breech deliveries. He is working to develop an alternative to the American model of over-medicalized hospital based birthing while enjoying his life as a practitioner, as an advocate and as a father raising his daughter, step-sons and horses. Dr. Fischbein is honored to join the distinguished advisory board of the International Maternity Institute.
Diastasis Rehab Expert
Julie Tupler, RN, CCE
Julie is a Registered Nurse, certified childbirth educator and fitness instructor. She developed the Maternal Fitness Program in 1990 and has been working with pregnant women and new moms ever since. She is on the advisory board of Fit Pregnancy and the Women’s Sports Foundation. She is the author of two books, Maternal Fitness and Lose Your Mummy Tummy. She is the producer of the Diastasis Rehab and Lose Your Mummy Tummy DVDs and has developed the Diastasis Rehab ™ splint.
She is an expert on diastasis recti and has developed the research-based Tupler Technique to close a diastasis no matter when or how it was created. She trains medical and fitness professionals with her Tupler Technique Training for Treatment of Diastasis Recti. She speaks frequently at conferences throughout the U.S
Dr. Oz calls her an expert on diastasis recti. New York Magazine calls her the guru for pregnant women. She has been featured on many national television programs such as the Today Show, Regis & Kelly as well as in many fitness, medical, and women’s health magazines. Elle Macpherson (who pushed her baby out in 20 minutes) is a big fan of her program and wrote the forward for the Lose Your Mummy Tummy book.
Small Business and Finance Expert
Joseph Lizio holds a MBA in Finance and Entrepreneurship and has a strong commercial lending background. In his current venture, Mr. Lizio is the founder of -Business Money Today – a site designed to help business owners find and obtain capital to grow their businesses.
Sleep Consultant and Parent Educator
Angelique Millette (PhDc, PCD/CD [DONA])Angelique is a parent coach, sleep consultant, infant/toddler sleep and postpartum mood disorder researcher, lactation educator, DONA-certified birth and postpartum doula, and infant-child therapist intern who has worked with families across the Bay Area, the United States and Europe for the past 15 years.
She specializes in infant/child development and how parents can meet their own sleep needs while helping their young ones meet theirs. Angelique does not follow one specific sleep program, but rather helps families by taking into account family schedule, infant/toddler/child development, temperament, and parenting philosophy, all while keeping an eye on sleep deprivation, parental overwhelm, depression and anxiety. Angelique’s doctoral research addresses the correlation amongst infant sleep locations/methods, maternal postpartum depression/anxiety, and maternal attachment.
Angelique teaches sleep workshops at Day One in San Francisco, The Parents Center in Marin, Birthways in Berkeley, professional conferences and parents groups across the country, and works with families in their homes, on the phone and also via Skype © to provide individual and unique sleep methods and solutions for parents and their infants and young children.
Child Safety Expert
Alison Rhodes, also known as The Safety Mom, has exploded onto the national scene as the
preeminent voice on kid’s safety, wellness and healthy living. She is always on the lookout for the issues facing all children – newborns to teens as well as the entire family.
While Alison’s career began as a response to the death of her first child, over the years Alison has expanded her career platform to include the gamut of issues facing children today from the importance of healthy eating and an active lifestyle to cyber bullying and toy safety. Alison believes that a child’s parents are their greatest safety advocate and reminds parents that when it comes to dealing with their children, it’s important to be parents first and friends second.
Alison provides tips and advice to parents on a broad range of issues. Her ability to connect with parents in a down-to-earth, uplifting and engaging manner while providing important parenting information has made Alison a sought-after guest on many national television shows including The Today Show, Fox & Friends, CNN International, CNBC Squawk Box and The Doctors. Alison has also been featured in a variety of publications and websites including American Baby Magazine, Parents, BabyTalk, The Atlanta Journal Constitution, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, Parenting.com, SheKnows.com and Expectant Mother Magazine.
Every day she offers her insight and tips to readers on her blog, The Safety Chronicles and on other popular parenting sites such as Parenting Weekly and Baby Weekly.
Over the years, Alison has worked as a spokesperson for numerous clients including SC Johnson, Crest, Symantec Technologies, Schlage Locks, Evenflo, Safety First, and Lands End among others.
Natural Childbirth Educator
In addition to her work in the birth world, Catherine maintains a small private practice serving children and adults with communication disorders. She is a summa cum laude graduate of Illinois State University with degrees in Speech-Language Pathology and Vocal Performance, is certified by the Amercian Speech-Language-Hearing Association and additionally holds an Early Intervention Specialist credential in both evaluation and treatment for serving children from birth through age 3.
She provides private and telephone consultations, teaches independent childbirth education classes, writes evidence-based articles on natural childbirth and pregnancy, and speaks on childbirth topics to parents and professionals.
Catherine is the owner and webmaster of GivingBirthNaturally.com which provides evidence-based natural childbirth and pregnancy information to parents and professionals. She stays updated on the latest research on childbirth and pregnancy so she can provide parents and professionals with accurate information.
Her book, Birth Outside the Box, was published in 2008. Catherine provides childbirth education classes to clients in her area through individual office visits and group sessions, and works with clients and groups throughout the world through her online childbirth classes. She also writes and publishes guided imagery and relaxation scripts for use in pregnancy, birth and the postpartum period.
Catherine’s home and her practice are located in central Illinois, where she resides with her husband, two daughters, Eden, age 7, and Iris, age 5, and their menagerie of pets.
Nutrition and Fertility Expert
Cindy BaileyThrough the Fertile Kitchen™ (www.fertilekitchen.com), Cindy Bailey is committed to helping women and couples make a difference in their own fertility through diet/nutrition. In her book, she and her husband, Pierre Giauque share easy-to-make, flavorful recipes, along with the dietary guidelines and lifestyle changes that helped them succeed against the odds to bring home a baby. The Foreword is written by Philip E. Chenette, M.D. and Medical Director, Pacific Fertility Center in San Francisco.
As a former athlete, Cindy has a passion for good health and nutrition, and a commitment to helping others find natural, holistic ways of healing. She is a member of RESOLVE, the national infertility organization, and is also a freelance writer and award-winning owner of Bailey Communications, a firm that specializes in providing targeted, effective written communications for clients. She is editor-in-chief and co-founder of LitRave.com, a literary webzine, and has written for Glamour, City Sports Magazine, Intercom and other publications. For her firm, clients have included Warner Bros., Mattel Interactive, Los Angeles County, Alexander-Ogilvy Public Relations and many others. Cindy has also taught numerous workshops in creative nonfiction and has read her work at various venues, including San Francisco’s LitQuake Festival. She holds a B.A. in Applied Mathematics from U.C. Berkeley and loves to travel, do sports, and hang out with her family.
Dr. Rama Ronen, Ph.D (PSY #23043) is a licensed psychologist and has extensive experience working with individuals, families and children of all ages. She is exceptionally well trained in Cognitive Behavioral Psychotherapy and also incorporates Dialectical Behavioral principles in her practice. Rama works with expectant, new, and experienced mothers, providing support and helping develop useful skills during this transition time. She can also provide home visits if necessary. In addition, she also has many years of experience working with emotionally and behaviorally challenged children, depression, anxiety, loss and grief.
Dr. Rama Ronen has three areas of specialty:
Prenatal and Postpartum Support
Dr. Ronen’s non-judgmental approach helps clients to identify, express and gain clarity about the challenges they face. She guides them to learn and apply creative, effective skills in a supportive and validating environment.
Dr. Ronen offers expertise on bereavement, and specifically on exploring the role of the continuing bond to the deceased and coping with the death of a loved one. She has extended her focuses to the impact of pet loss.
Dr. Ronen earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Pacific Graduate School of Psychology, which is fully accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA). Dr. Ronen is bilingual and offers services in both English and Hebrew. She can be reached by calling our San Francisco location (415) 887-7650 or our Palo Alto Location (650) 268-9787, Ext. 5, or by emailing Rama@entelechywellness.com.
Childcare Educator and Expert
As the founder and director of Morningside Nannies and past president of the International Nanny Association, Pat Cascio has been in the in-home childcare industry since 1983. As the mother of four young daughters she personally experienced the lack of professionalism and top quality screening practices that existed in what was then known as “domestic agencies.” As a result, she founded the first agency in Houston to specialize in the referral of nannies. As a former employer of nannies for her own family, a former Executive Recruiter, and with 27 years in the business of placing nannies, she screens applicants by asking herself this question: “Would Ihire this nanny to care for my own children?”
Pat served on the Board of Directors of the International Nanny Association (INA) for ten years, and had the honor of being elected as the President of the INA Board of Directors for eight terms. During her years as president of INA she acted as the spokesperson for the nanny industry and has been interviewed by hundreds of local, national and international media representatives as well as being a guest on various television and radio programs. She is the go-to person for all the major TV channels in Houston. Pat also is one of the Ask The Expert panelists for two industrypublications. Morningside Nannies is located in Houston, Texas and was awarded the honorof “Agency of the Year” in 2008 by the Association of Premier NannyAgencies.
Childcare and Multiples Expert
Michelle LaRowe is the 2004 International Nanny Association (INA) Nanny of the Year and is the author of the Nanny to the Rescue! parenting series, Working Mom’s 411: How to Manage Kids, Career and Home and a Mom’s Ultimate Book of Lists: 100+ Lists to Save You Time, Money and Sanity.
Michelle is an INA Credentialed Nanny, holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in chemistry, a certificate in pastoral studies and has spent more than 15 years as a professional nanny and parenting consultant. Michelle is an active member of the nanny community and serves as the Executive Director of the International Nanny Association, a 500+ member non-profit association dedicated to improving the quality of in-home child care.
Michelle is regularly called on by the media as a “nanny expert” and has appeared on television (700 Club, NECN, FOX), has been featured in print (USA Today, The Boston Globe, Better Homes and Gardens)and is a regular columnist for several magazines including FamiliesOnlineMagazine, TWINS Magazine and Today’s Pentecostal Evangel. Her writing has been featured in The Experts’ Guide to the Baby Years, on modernmom.com and in several national publications. Michelle is a national speaker and has spoken to moms groups across the country on various parenting topics and on the importance of choosing quality child care. Michelle resides in Hyannis, Massachusetts with her husband Jeff and daughter Abigail.
You can learn more about Michelle by visiting her website:
Nutrition Expert and Culinary Chef
Diana Stobo is a two-time award winning author of Get Naked Fast, a guide to stripping away the foods that weigh you down. She is an educator, a motivational speaker as well as a “classically trained culinary artist”. She teaches the benefits of raw food and inspires others to eat for health vibrancy and beauty “one meal at a time”
Once plagued by relentless pain and physical discomfort due to food toxicity, Diana successfully navigated her way through old patterns to discover a healthy way of eating and living that has transformed her own life to one of optimal health, vibrancy, and beauty. Passionate about everything in life including her relationships, her family, her health, and especially her food, Diana understands how integral food is to all aspects of nutrition including child development, family patterns, social expectations, and body awareness. As someone who looks and feels younger than she did 10 years ago, Diana’s philosophy is to empower the individual with food choices that create a better lifestyle, and a healthier and more energetic way of being in the world. Diana’s goal is to design nutritious products that are accessible, filled with familiar foods that have taste and flare, and introduce many exciting and healthful new ingredients. Integrating the whole of her experience from her early teenage tart baking business to training in the Cornell culinary arts division of the Hotel Administration Program, running her own highly successful Signature Catering business, consulting one-on-one with clients to tailor individualized programs, and developing a raw snack line for the “tween” pangs of hunger, Diana’s has refined and focused her unique blend of expertise to emerge in the living food movement as a leading innovator and educator. Combining professional expertise with rich personal experience, Diana is dedicated to creating delicious, nutritious recipes that are easy to prepare and satisfying to the senses. Feasting while dropping excess weight, increasing physical and mental energy, and staying young and sexy while developing a new healthier relationship with food—this is the lifestyle that Diana has discovered for herself and wishes to share with you!
Elizabeth Dameron-Drew, Vice-President, Baby NursesElizabeth joined Town & Country Resources as a Placement Counselor in 1996. Over the years here she has helped find solutions for a wide range of client and candidate needs. She has this to say of her current focus on Baby Nurse placements, “I’m incredibly satisfied by connecting parents to baby experts who offer much needed
support during such a special, but often very challenging time.” As a working mom with years of experience having employed a Nanny, she has a first hand understanding of the peace of mind that quality childcare gives parents. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Art from California College of the Arts. Elizabeth lives on the Peninsula with her
husband and her two sons. Because of her oldest son’s heart defect, Elizabeth has a unique understanding of the needs of families with children with health challenges.
Director of Marketing Communications, Sprout Organic Baby Food.
Nicole’s experience as a mom to a former preemie (born at 2 pounds and 28 weeks) was the catalyst for her passion to help children develop to their potential. Nicole is responsible for Sprout Organic Baby Food’s corporate brand and product strategy and marketing communications across advertising, retail, promotions and events. She is a Partner in and most recently served as Chief Marketing Officer for Parentville.com, the parent social network where they can find and share recommendations on products, services, activities, doctors and caregivers. Prior to joining Sprout Baby Food, she led Strategic Marketing & Business Development for the National Basketball Association, Women’s National Basketball Association, and ESPN for 13 years. She has a BA from University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from New York University Stern School of Business. Nicole supports child health and safety organizations, including CJ SIDS Foundation and First Candle.
Pre/Post Natal Yoga Expert
Debra Flashenberg, CD(DONA), LCCE, E-RYT 500Debra is a graduate of the Boston Conservatory of Music with a degree in Musical Theater. She
has spent most of her life performing and was introduced to yoga through a choreographer in
1997. After several years as a yoga student, she decided to continue her education and became
certified as a Bikram Yoga instructor. In 2001 Debra headed out to Seattle to study with renowned prenatal yoga teacher Colette Crawford, R.N., at the Seattle Holistic Center. Debra has received a certificate for Vinyasa Yoga from Shiva Rea, with whom she continues to study. Debra has also studied the Maternal Fitness Method with Julie Tupler. In 2004, Debra completed the OM Yoga advanced teacher training with Cyndi Lee. Debra currently studies with Cyndi Lee, Genevieve Kapular, and Susan “Lip” Orem.
After being witness to several “typical” hospital births, Debra felt it was important to move beyond the yoga room and be present in the birthing room. In 2003, Debra attended her first birth as a DONA certified labor support doula. In that short period of time, Debra has attended about 75 births. She is continuously in awe of the beauty and brilliance of birth.
In 2006, Debra received her certification as a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator. In September of 2007, Debra completed a Midwife Assistant Program with Ina May Gaskin, Pamela Hunt and many of the other Farm Midwives at The Farm Midwifery Center in Tennessee. Most recently, Debra had the incredible experience of helping one of her clients give birth on the bathroom floor. Luckily, the EMS arrived seconds before the baby did!
Drawing on her experience as a prenatal yoga teacher, labor support doula and childbirth educator, Debra looks to establish a safe and effective class for pregnancy and beyond.
Infant CPR Expert
Georgia Montgomery, CD, CBE, CLEGeorgia Montgomery is a hospital Perinatal Health Educator and teaches classes in childbirth, newborn care, breastfeeding, infant child/CPR and pediatric first aid at the is a member of the Marin Breastfeeding Coalition, and is Founding Director of CPR Family and The Parents Center in San Rafael. She is a Volunteer Health Educator at the Family Service Agency of Marin as well as at the MINT Prison Project as for incarcerated expecting and new mothers. She began her career doing prenatal and postpartum work leading her to teach in hospitals in San Francisco and Marin County.
Georgia is the mother of three adult children and is very active in the Childbirth Community as an advocate. She facilitates New Mother Support Groups at The Parents Center in San Rafael California. She teaches classes there as well as other venues in the greater San Francisco Bay Area. Her greatest joy is helping prepare expecting parents through the amazing experience of childbirth and assisting new moms as they navigate the world of parenting.
Childbirth Educator, Film Producer, and Midwife
Diana Paul is the Executive Director of Sage Femme, a non-profit organization that produces documentaries about natural birth, sponsors the Mother Baby International Film Festival, and distributes information and films through symposiums and conferences. Diana owned an independent midwifery practice in Massachusetts for 9 years and is the mother of three children. Diana has a BA in English from Sonoma State University.
EcoBirth-Women for Earth and Birth
Molly McGettigan Arthur
Molly is a native San Franciscan; she graduated from UC Berkeley and has had extensive experience working with startups and growing networks in her professional sales career. She has sold media, software and sponsorships for the premier internet trade show and is currently selling software products to election bureaus in the western states. She and her husband of 38 years have raised two children in Marin County and happily her new twin granddaughters live close by in San Francisco! She is the inspiration behind EcoBirth whose vision is -Relating earth and birth- caring for one natural life so we will all be well. She has a fierce desire to protect all our children and grandchildren and fully appreciate the freely given gifts of our Mother Earth. She sees birth as the metaphor for transformation and creation that if honored, will create a paradigm shift in our culture’s consciousness. Her focus is on inspiring women to change our culture’s story to compassion for the environments of Earth and Birth and to impel social change to sustain healthy, caring humans and a healed earth home.
Lisa Malley, Excecutive Director of Choices in Childbirth
Lisa Malley, Executive Director, joined Choices in Childbirth in November 2009. With nearly ten years of nonprofit experience, Lisa brings extensive fundraising background to the position and a strong dedication to women’s health. Her professional experience ranges from reproductive health and rights organizations–including Planned Parenthood Federation of America and the Alan Guttmacher Institute–to university fundraising at Columbia Law School. She has a B.A. from Indiana University and received a Master’s degree in Nonprofit Management from Milano Graduate School at the New School University. Lisa lives in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn with her husband Adam.
Super Natural Mom
Greer, Super Natural Mom®, is an award-winning journalist, environmental health consultant, holistic wellness educator, and Certified Build It Green® Healthy Home/Work Specialist. Her bestselling book, “Super Natural Home: Improve Your Health, Home and Planet…One Room at a Time” (Rodale), a Books for a Better Life Award Finalist, is endorsed by Deepak Chopra, Dr. Joe Mercola, etc. Beth eliminated a tumor in her chest without drugs or surgery by making small shifts in her diet, and the products she uses in her home.
Beth is former President and Co-Owner of The Learning Annex, an acclaimed adult education company. She is columnist for The Huffington Post and hosts “Your Super Natural Life” on Womens Radio, Women’s Information Network and Here Women Talk Radio. She’s a popular media guest, having appeared on ABC, NBC and CNN and on local and national radio shows across the country. Beth is an inspiring speaker who presents at industry expos, corporations, spas, health centers and schools on the importance of eliminating toxins from our everyday products.
Beth is a trusted consumer advocate in the Natural Product and Sustainability Market and is leading a movement of awareness and responsibility about environmental health. She designs unique Integrative Corporate Wellness Programs and personalized in-home/in-office detox audits and provides consultations nationwide.
Child Safety Expert
Martin Simenc Owner / Founder, Home Safety Services
Martin Simenc has over 20 years of experience in the safety and risk management industry. Martin is regarded as an expert in residential safety, risk management and industrial loss control. He is a frequent public speaker on various topics most commonly those addressing safety in the home. He authors a monthly column entitled “Ask The Safety Guy”, was recently recognized in The Wall Street Journal and serves as a consulting expert to various organizations including BabyCenter.com and On The House with The Carey Brothers. He has also appeared on HGTV’s House Detective.
In 1997, Martin founded Home Safety Services, whose purpose is: To Make Home a Safer Place, For Every Generation. Home Safety Services has since become the largest Bay Area residential safety company and has assisted over 10,000 families by increasing their safety, confidence and
peace of mind.
Prior to founding Home Safety Services, Martin managed the Property Risk Management function for Hewlett-Packard Company on a worldwide basis. Previously, he served as a loss control and risk management consultant to numerous multinational manufacturing companies. It was his father’s stroke in 1993 which influenced Martin’s change in focus from industrial to residential safety. His father has since recovered extremely well; however, the experience raised the importance of taking practical steps to improve safety in and around the home both prior to and after life changing events.
Martin’s education includes a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Santa Clara University and a master’s degree in Finance and International Business from the University of San Francisco. He is a Licensed Professional Fire Protection Engineer (PE) and Licensed
General Contractor. He is a Certified Aging in Place Specialist (CAPS) and has earned the Associate in Risk Management (ARM) designation. He is the Secretary of the International Association for Child Safety and on the Advisory Board of the Safe Kids Coalition. He is a founding member of the California Stop Falls Task Force and the San Mateo County Fall Prevention Task Force. His company’s work with Stanford Hospital has recently been recognized as a national model program by the National Council on Aging.
Emily Genevish is the owner and sole designer of Genevish Graphics. Being a mother of two, she understands the challenges that come with working with young ones at home. Originally from Tampa, Florida and working out of her Jacksonville, North Carolina home, the freelance graphic designer provides graphic design for print and the web to individuals and small businesses across the world. She specializes in unique vector logo design featuring original illustrations and unique typography. Holding a BFA in Digital Design, she is knowledgeable in the most current computer design software to meet any design need.
JOY ROSE has been awarded the Susan B. Anthony Award from NOW-NYC 2009.
Joy Rose is President and Founder of Mamapalooza Inc. a company by women, promoting (m)others for social, cultural and economic benefit. She is also acting Executive Director for The Motherhood Foundation working towards the Museum Of Motherhood. Joy was appointed the Susan B. Anthony Award from NOW-NYC in recognition of her grassroots activism and dedication to advancing equality and improving the lives of women and girls in 2009.
Committed a lasting legacy of empowerment and support, while redefining what it means to be a modern mother, Joy has successfully pioneered a new culture of mom-branded art and performance. She’s also the founder and lead singer of the rock band, ‘Housewives On Prozac’. Inspired by her experiences as a feminist mother in the arts, she works tirelessly with women, and volunteers around the country co-creating events and programming, changing the way women’s voices are heard in the media, education and performing arts, impacting the culture of modern mothers and their families.
Day to day operations of Mamapalooza include the inception and production of a series of large-scale festival events across the country each April –June, working in alliance with local government, parks departments and cultural affairs. Each Mamapalooza Festival generates community awareness while highlighting mom-music performers, women-owned businesses, vendors, health education, social services for families and kids activities.
Joy Rose – holds a BFA in Theater from Denison University, was a core team member of the Betsey Johnson organization and opened the first Soho Store in New York City. She has enjoyed success as a recording and video artist, is a Billboard Chart topping performer and MTV Basement Tape Winner. She worked closely with her midwife to form ‘Prepared Parenting Classes’ post childbirth, and is the proud mother of Brody, Blaze, Ali and Zena.
Her writing has been published in Women’s Media Center, The Mom Egg, Hot Moms Handbook and The International Museum Of Women and The Association For Research On Mothering. Her music has appeared on radio stations around the country and she’s been profiled on CNN, American Voices, Women In History, NPR, Good Morning America, USA Today, The London Times, The Chicago Tribune, ABC, CBS, NBC, Ladies’ Home Journal, Child Magazine and People Magazine to name a few.
She is a featured guest speaker for Women’s Events, on Radio, in Hospitals (Highlighting stories of courage and survival), most recently at The Association For Research On Mothering where key delegates agreed on the formation of the IMN (International Mothers Network). She has appeared at The Women’s Media Center, NYC founded by Jane Fonda, Robin Morgan and Gloria Steinem, speaking on Art, Feminism and Finances. She was a featured guest speaker at the ‘What Women Want’ Conference, October 2007, Montana, The MPLZCC Creativity & Lifestyles Conference, NYC, and sits on a special committee for the Westchester Office For Women and The Women’s Hall Of Fame. Joy holds the key to Seneca Falls, NY for her work on
behalf of Women & Mothers 2005.
Joy is currently blogging and networking through Mamapalooza, Moms Rising.org, Hot Moms Club, Word Press and First Wives World. She works closely with a staff of nearly fifty freelancers & volunteers creating opportunities that involve thousands of artists, educators, and mom and women-owned businesses worldwide.
Joy is currently at work editing a film about ‘The Motherhood Movement’, capturing the voices of Feminist Mothers of the 21st century, and pioneering the ‘Sustainable Women’ Initiative for Eco-consciousness and mindful living.
She is also a contributor to ENCYCLOPEDIA OF MOTHERHOOD: A New 3-volume Reference to Be Published by Sage Publications, edited by Andrea O’Reilly due out 2010. This comprehensive work will be marketed and sold to college, public, and academic libraries and includes some 750 articles, covering all aspects of a social science perspective on motherhood, including psychology, gender studies, sociology, education, human.
Saray Hill is an IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant), a Lactation Educator and Breastfeeding Peer Counselor, as well as a mom and wife residing in Los Angeles, CA. Born in Ecuador, she is fluent in both Spanish and English. Saray holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the Universidad Católica Santiago de Guayaquil in Ecuador and completed the Lactation Consultant Training Program at the University of California San Diego-Extension. Mom/ entrepreneur Saray is the President of her own company, Mother’s Utopia Lactation Services, where she offers support to expectant and new parents on their journey of parenthood in person, online (Skype), in group or private lactation consultations and classes such as: breastfeeding, baby care, returning to work and breastfeeding, selecting the best breast pump for you and much more.
Saray is the Lactation Specialist for St. John’s Partnership for Families in Santa Monica, CA and previously worked as a Breastfeeding Peer Counselor for BELLAS (Breastfeeding Encouragement Learning Liaison and Support) in Charlotte, NC and WIC (Women Infants and Children) in Los Angeles, CA. These positions put her in contact with families of different backgrounds/ethnicities, socioeconomical and educational levels, with individual and specific needs. She is the founder of El Club de Lactancia en Twitter, the first Spanish speaking breastfeeding support group in social media, where moms from all over the world support one another on their motherhood and breastfeeding journeys. She is also one of the breastfeeding experts at Sixty Second Parent.
Saray believes that empowering parents means giving them evidence based information to help them make their own educated decisions when it comes to feeding and raising their children, along with compassionate and emotional support.
Saray Hill, BS, IBCLC, RLC
Sacred Pregnancy, Conscious Family Living & Ecomom
Anni is the author of Sacred Pregnancy and is an eco-mama, author, conscious family living coach and professional cook. Anni has been a Conscious Family Living advocate and organic cook for many years, and has helped many families understand taking a more natural and holistic approach to pregnancy, birthing, parenting and living. Anni has developed Sacred Pregnancy courses for the birth educator to correspond with the book and a website with a full working pregnancy and mommy community. Further, Anni has partnered with MOBY wraps to develop a post-partnum pregnancy MOBY belly wrap, to help women naturally heal their bodies after birth.
In addition to Sacred Pregnancy, Anni has authored 5 additional Conscious Family Living style books, including, Organically Raised: Conscious Cooking for Babies & Toddlers (Rodale, May 2010), ICE POP JOY (Sellers, 2011), The Organic Family Cookbook; growing, greening & cooking together (Sellers, Fall 2011), Naturally Fun Parties for Kids (Sellers, March 2012), and Bountiful Baby Purees. (Fairwinds Press).
Anni has been a guest speaker at Baby Celebration, The Pump Station, several LA moms groups and has written for LA Parents and Orange County Parents and is the resident baby / toddler food expert for Hot Moms Club, City Mommy, Citibabes NY & Mindful Mama, Green Moms, and Macaroni Kid. Anni is a Nordic Naturals Ambassador and speaker.
Anni lives in Philadelphia with her family. She has one son, Zoë (14) and Tim & Anni have one daughter together Lotus Sunshine (7) a little boy, Bodhi (4), and baby, River (1), all born happy and healthy at home.
For more information on Anni, visit:
Sacred Birth Coach and Educator
Stephanie Dawn, ALSP, is a Sacred Birth Coach and Birth Educator for A New Paradigm of Birth. She teaches workshops and has a private practice at the Sacred Birth Haven in Culver City, California. She is the founder of Sacred Birth Work, a heart-centered form of childbirth preparation that supports women and their mates for the whole transformation that occurs when a child is born; emotional, mental, physical and spiritual. She is the author of the Sacred Birth Workbook and the mother of Jasper, 6, born at home naturally with a midwife and doula, and Zephyr 3.5, born at the hospital naturally with a midwife and a doula. http://www.stephaniedawn.com
Pre and Post Natal Pilates Expert
Carolyne Anthony has been in the Dance, Fitness and Pilates world for over 30 years. She trained as a professional dancer in London, England in the late 1970’s. She obtained her teaching diploma in1982 and went on to dance professionally in Europe, Asia and Africa. She remains a member of the Royal Academy of Dancing and an Associate of The Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance. Carolyne was introduced to Pilates in 1983, at the prompting of her Jazz instructor. She found Alan Herdman and continued to learn from him until she left for the USA.
In the 80’s as a newcomer to the USA her focus turned to fitness as the aerobics boom began to hit. Carolyne certified with AFAA and the AEA as a group fitness instructor and went on to study the PACE (People with Arthritis Can Exercise) program. She put all this knowledge to good use as an instructor with the New England Health and Racquet Clubs.
While living in Connecticut Carolyne also joined the faculty of the Hartford Conservatory of Music and Dance, teaching ballet, jazz and pedagogy to the diploma students. She danced with the New England Dance Theater and helped found and became the Artistic Director of the Enfield Civic ballet Company. It was during this time that she became pregnant with her first child.
Carolyne was dismayed to learn that no matter how many certifications or diplomas she had acquired, nothing had given her any information on how to exercise during her pregnancy. Being too scared to do what she was doing, Carolyne opted to stop moving during the pregnancy. Finding herself with a unrecognizable body after the birth of her daughter, she busied herself with designing an exercise program that was both safe and beneficial for pregnant women. Her goal was to prepare the body for the birth, not just to be fit. Through the course of her next two pregnancies, Carolyne refined her skills and knowledge and today you have the highly successful Pre and post natal Pilates Specialist™ programs.
These programs and many of The Center’s workshops have been included in international conferences such as Body Mind Spirit and Pilates on Tour and IHRSA.
Carolyne works from a holistic point of view, seeing the body as an amazing instrument that needs the correct attention in order to work properly. Her efforts to make this possible for her clients has led her to study for her Masters in Natural Health, become certified as a Birth Doula and to learn other healing modalities . Currently Carolyne is a level two Reiki practitioner, Level 1 Myofascial release practitioner (John Barnes approach) and an Esoteric Healer. She is certified by Polestar, BasiPilates and PhysicalMInd. Carolyne is on the faculty for Balanced Body University and is part of BasiPilates Advanced Education Course™.
Ecological Living and Home Design Expert
Sara Mossman joins The International Academy of Baby Planning Professionals with a passion for fostering healthy and beautiful environments for families. Drawing upon a background in ecological design & lifestyle, landscape horticulture, and feng shui, she designs spaces and lifestyles to support the well-being of people and planet.
During the past ten years, Sara’s work has focused on communicating environmental sustainability to diverse audiences from multi-national corporations to concerned mothers, as well as raising community awareness through eco-events. While working for Sillapere, a san-francisco-based design firm, Sara led the drive towards becoming a recognized industry leader in sustainable event design and business practices, while honing her own creative style, spatial solutions and knowledge of innovative green materials.
Sara’s experiences and extensive travels have informed her approach to good living, a light-footprint, clever design, and an expanded view of what is possible–incorporating diverse wisdom from off-the-grid villages in the south pacific islands to the sophisticated artistic history of Italy. These days she can be found happily inspiring many aspects of a balanced, beautiful and regenerative lifestyle, from edible gardens to non-toxic interiors.
Natural Baby Pro
My name is Jen Aliano. I am the Co-Owner and Creator of Natural Baby Pros (NaturalBabyPros.com). First and foremost, I am a wife and mother of two wonderful baby boys who take up the majority of my time and attention. I love them more than I have ever loved anything in my life, and it is because of them that I started my website and business. The births that we experienced together, and the time we spent together before and after those births, are what motivated me to take on my amazing project. If it weren’t for them, Natural Baby Pros would not exist, nor would I have found my life’s calling…
I am also an acupuncturist, nutritionist, and holistic health practitioner, specializing in the care and treatment of fertility issues, pregnancy, and the post-partum period. I smile when I think of the babies that I have helped bring into this world, but then am reminded of how many women and couples are still struggling with just becoming pregnant, and many of them are unaware of all the different therapies available to help before, during, and after their own journeys into motherhood.
My own births are another reason I am so inspired to work on this project. I wouldn’t say that I have any regrets about how my two sons were birthed, but I would say that I wish I was more educated. Both of my sons were born in the hospital, thankfully with an amazing OB who was very open to natural birth and alternative therapies. My first son, Carson, came with the help of an epidural. I was planning on using self-hypnotherapy for his birth, but without the proper help and support of a birth partner, realized it was too much for me to do on my own through the entire process. Because of this, I was well prepared for the birth of my second son… I hired a doula. Much thanks to her, I had a successful and amazing birth with Adam. There is much more to this story, but I will leave it at that for now. What I can say from these experiences, and those that followed each birth, is that it not only takes an amazing woman to be a great mother, it also takes the right education, the right opportunities, strength and trust in your own innate wisdom to make the best choices for you and your children. That is what makes you the best mother you can possibly be to your children. But in order to make choices, you must know all your options, and this is where Natural Baby Pros plays its part!
EUROPEAN BABY GEAR EXPERT
Mylene BONJEANT is passionate for baby gear. Over the 20 past years she’s been working in this industry, she’s been able to get a true expertise in babies and parents needs :
She started her career in Toys « R » Us, N°1 worldwide toys retailer, where she could contribute to launch the Babies « R » Us in Europe : During 8 years, she’s been working on selecting the right products for the consumers, and well as training more than 100 sales advisors per year on how to make sure that these product were fitting each parent’s and baby’s needs.Then, to expand her knowledge in marketing and product development, she choosed to join the marketing department of Graco, n°2 worldwide juvenile brand, to develop Home Product range for Europe. An other part of her job was to build a new look for Graco brand through fashion and materials.With this double experience of buyer and marketer, she is now recognized in the industry as the Baby Gear Expert able to understand and answer both manufacturers and retailers constraints. Passionate for consumer driven innovations and completely consumer focused, she is doing her best to answer to their needs while taking in account industy specific requirements such as ease of use, security, and quality.Mum of a baby boy since 2009, she could therefore confirm though her own experience all these years of research and training : She is now a consultant for brands or retailers who need marketing support on how to build and develop their range in both Europe and middle east.www.mylenebonjeant.com
Cynthia Overgard is the founder and owner of HypnoBirthing of CT, a childbirth educator, author and editor. She first discovered HypnoBirthing when she was 7 months pregnant with her first child. In 2005, she water-birthed her 8 lb. 14 oz. baby boy at the Connecticut Childbirth and Women’s Center in Danbury, CT. Cynthia, her husband, and their newborn son returned home just 8 hours after the birth. The beauty and simplicity of that experience was life-changing. Within weeks, Cynthia happily resigned as a finance & risk management executive to pursue the field of birthing. Later, in June 2009, Cynthia water-birthed her 9 lb. 7 oz. daughter during a planned home-birth, where she was attended by two midwives, her husband and 4-year-old son.
Since her first birth in 2005, Cynthia became increasingly committed to educating and empowering women in birthing. In 2007, Cynthia wrote and published her inspiring birth story in various print media — most notably, Mothering magazine made it their cover story. Later, Cynthia was summoned by a British publisher to co-author a textbook on childbirth, which has since been sold to thousands of schools and libraries throughout the U.S. and U.K. In Winter 2010, Cynthia’s article, Taking Charge of Giving Birth, was the feature story in Pathways magazine.
Cynthia considers it among her life missions to support women in birthing. In February 2007, she founded HypnoBirthing of CT (www.HypnoBirthingCT.com), and has since prepared hundreds of couples to experience their own beautiful, satisfying births by coaching them through each detail of their birth plans and providing them with the tools to remain deeply calm and in control all throughout labor. Within two years of founding HypnoBirthing of CT, Cynthia’s practice rapidly grew by referrals to her current capacity of teaching 100-110 couples per year.
Cynthia has been quoted in American Baby and continues to teach, train and publish on a regular basis. She is also the Content Editor for two natural parenting publications — Pathways to Family Wellness magazine and Healthy Child.
Cynthia is deeply- informed and passionate in all areas of healthy living — from her regular yoga practice to her vegetarian household and holistic philosophy on children’s health and child-raising. Cynthia, her husband, Eric, and their children live in Westport CT, where they enjoy participating in their community and exploring Westport’s beaches.
Special Needs Expert
Jessica Brodey is an attorney and public policy consultant with more than 15 years of experience in intellectual property counseling, litigation, and advocacy to improve access to education, work, technology, community and activities of daily living for people with disabilities. Jessica is also a maternity and child consultant and the Founder/President of Eat-Sleep-Love, a company created to help new and expectant parents tackle many challenging parenting issues, including sleep, breastfeeding, maternity education and preparation, and educational, health and special needs advocacy. Through her company, Jessica provides private consultations, group seminars and classes, and helps parents create and implement plans that are respectful of all parenting philosophies and tailored to each child’s unique needs.
Since the birth of her first child, Jessica has been interested in the relationship between healthy sleep habits and child development, particularly educational disabilities. Jessica has been actively involved in breastfeeding and parenting support groups, both in person and online, and supporting parents of children with disabilities identify resources and advocate for services for their children. She began connecting with other parents as a “mommy blogger,” writing about her own parenting challenges and experiences with her children, such as her daughter’s gastro-esopheageal reflux disease related sleep struggles when she was five months old. The issues she faced caused her to seek out information about helping children develop and maintain good sleep habits. Ultimately, she decided to pursue advanced training in this area and has been working with clients ever since.
Jessica graduated from Emory University and the New York University School of Law. She received her sleep training through Kim West’s Gentle Sleep Coach program and the International Maternity Institute‘s Maternity and Child Sleep Consultant program. Jessica is also a Certified Lactation Counselor through the Healthy Children’s Center for Breastfeeding, a Happiest Baby Educator certified by Dr. Harvey Karp, and has completed her coursework to become a Professional Baby Planner through the International Academy of Baby Planner Professionals. Jessica also serves as the Eastern Regional Director (USA) of the Association of Professional Sleep Consultants, and the Special Needs Expert on the International Maternity Institute’s Advisory Board. She currently resides in Bethesda, Maryland with her family.
Valerie Lynn lived and worked in Asia for sixteen years, spending twelve of those years in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. She is the very first foreigner to earn a certificate in Traditional Malay Postnatal Massage in Malaysia. Her passion is traditional post-pregnancy recuperation methods, especially the Malay beliefs and practices. In addition to being the International Country Coordinator for Malaysia, for Postpartum Support International (PSI) she is a on the Advisory Board for a documentary in the making in the United States called, the After Birth Project. She is introducing an entirely new paradigm regarding after birth care in the United States based on Eastern influences. Her book, The Mommy Plan, Restoring Your Post-pregnancy Body Naturally Using Women’s Traditional Wisdom, is gaining global recognition in the child birth industry as she has explained core tenants of traditional after birth guidelines surrounding a mother’s diet, activities and personal care during the first 6-8 weeks after child birth. Valerie is a Traditional Post-pregnancy Practitioner and offers training in traditional after birth herbal body treatments, massage and abdominal wrapping, and is US distributor of a unique traditional, all natural Postnatal Care Set. If you are interested in adding the services of a Traditional Post- pregnancy Practitioner to your business or would like to find out more information on the herbal post-pregnancy recovery products, contact Valerie at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.postpregnancywellness.com.
Maternity & Child Sleep Consultant Advisory Board
Mar Oscategui CBP, CGP, FSC
Mar Oscategui, founder of the International Association of Sleep Consultants and International Maternity Institute , is an international business consultant, author, speaker and educator who specializes in maternal health, fitness, and green living. She is a leader in educational program development and has been consulting and guiding hundreds of clients for the last 16 years. She founded the first Family Sleep Consultant Certification program available via the International Maternity Institute. Her love for sleep training evolved from her pregnancy where she found herself challenged during her third trimester. Once her daughter, Bella Luna was born, she found herself stuck with many different theories and conflicting advice. As a result she empowered herself to find the best option for sleep that worked for her and her family. With a passion to provide formal standards and support for professional family sleep consultants, Mar created the IAOSC with a core group of founding members. Mar enjoys empowering, educating, and supporting expectant and new parents to know all their options so that they may confidently make the best decisions for themselves and their baby in the most objective, healthy, safe way. Additionally, Mar also holds a multitude of prestigious certifications including baby planning, eco-consulting, green birth education, wellness coaching, stress management, nutrition, yoga, group exercise, personal training, and pilates. Mar advises and coaches maternity professionals offering a wealth of knowledge and support. Her enthusiasm, inspiration, creativity, and knowledge has helped launch many maternity start-up businesses in 20 countries around the world. She enjoys helping business owners meet their challenges with clear and direct solutions.
By her own calculation, Kathy Sinclair has spent at least 2,856 nights without sleep so that parents of newborns could get theirs. In nearly 15 years as a neonatal specialist, she has comforted 100′s of newborns. She is, quite simply, one of the best in the business. And now, as head of Baby Sleep Solutions, a Sleep consultation service, Kathy makes house calls to families who need to get more sleep. Since 2000, Kathy has been helping families in Los Angeles get more sleep. Kathy has worked helped more than 100 families, including Cindy Crawford and Rande Gerber, Ryan and Christian Slater, Paul and Paula Reiser, Jenny and Jim Belushi, Penny and Nick Rhodes, D.B. and Ashley Sweeney and Willow Bay and Bob Iger. Kathy is a graduate of Australia’s prestigious Charlton Brown Nanny College, a certified post partum doula, lactation educator and a certified happiest baby on the Block educator. Her approach to sleep combines and focuses on all these components. With this approach, she creates an individualized plan for each family: putting a newborn on a schedule within days, assuring and educating frustrated mothers, and often restoring order-and humor-to the new family’s household. “It’s been seven months since she left my home,” says one Montecito mother, “and not a day goes by when I don’t use some tidbit of information I learned from her.” Kathy’s extraordinary relationship with newborns goes well beyond her education. “Our son Nicholas had severe colic for his first twelve weeks,” says one Los Angeles mother, “and Kathy’s personality was a life saver for our family. Her resume speaks for itself; however, it does not truly reflect her intuitiveness in knowing how to care for and calm babies.” Kathy Sinclair lives in Ventura, CA with her husband, a mechanical engineer, and their dogs, Kaia, Jette and Saxon.
Karen Pollak, founder and principal of “Babies to Sleep” is a well known sleep coach specializing in infant and toddler sleep. For over 10 years, Karen has mentored thousands of new and expectant parents and helped them thrive during this joyful but demanding time in their lives. Her unique babies2sleep system provides practical and effective solutions to day-to-day sleep challenges. Over the years, Karen has helped countless families enhance the quality of their home life and establish positive relationships with their young children by establishing healthy sleep habits. Karen regularly offers educational seminars to parents and practitioners working with young families. Early in her career, Karen realized the significant impact that sleep deprivation had on new parents. Finding support and solutions to sleep struggles was an important, unmet need. In the decade since, Karen has helped families achieve their sleep objectives in a compassionate and practical way. Karen’s ability to understand each family’s unique situation and offer sensible solutions is the cornerstone of her success. Karen and her family live in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is the mother of three sons, including fraternal twins.
Jessica Shapley LMSW, CIH, CMT
For over fifteen years Jessica Shapley has helped hundreds of parents care for their children and themselves, by providing counseling and supportive services to groups, individuals and families. As a licensed social worker and mother of two, Jessica brings her personal and professional experience as well as her passion to everything she does. Jessica loves to watch new parents rest their fears and come to ease around parenting, by learning about their babies and themselves as parents. She is enthusiastic in bringing parents together to build community, establish support networks, combat isolation and to normalize the experience of being a new parent. Most importantly, she brings a sense of ease, lightness and practicality to every situation. Whether she is counseling individuals, couples or groups, Jessica’s philosophy is to empower parents to find the tools and resources within their own lives to get them through the transitional times that (new) parenthood presents. Jessica has appeared in media, including the Early Show on CBS, Time Out New York Kids magazine and more. You can read her weekly parenting column in the Manhattan Times News. Jessica earned her Bachelors degree in Psychology from Boston University and her MSW from Columbia University. She is certified in Integral Health Counseling, massage therapy and is certified to teach infant massage. Jessica lives with her husband and two children in Manhattan.
Described as a miracle worker by her clients, Pam Nease left a successful career in the Fall of 2009 to open up her own business as a Sleep Consultant. She rescues babies and children from the plight of sleep deprivation by showing parents how to give their little ones the beautiful gift and skill of sleep.
Pam meets with clients in person, over the phone and offers group seminars.
She has appeared on the radio, is the sleep expert for two magazines and is a sought after keynote speaker for Baby Fairs across the Okanagan.
Based in Kelowna BC, she has a growing local & international clientele which ranges from single parents to NHL Hockey Players, Celebrities, Nurses and Family Physicians.
For more great information and your FREE copy of the 5 Easy Steps to baby sleep, please visit her website at www.sleepsense.net/kelowna. She would also love to hear from you on Facebook and Twitter.