Board of Directors
Our Board of Directors all work directly with moms and babies and are Registered Kangaroulas in Kangaroo Mother Care
with BirthWorks International and Trained by Jill & Dr. Nils Bergman. We range from birth doulas and lactation professionals, to chiropractors, maternal mental health counselors, registered nutritionists and anthropologists!
Madison Hendry BEC
Madison Hendry is the owner of Mama Bird and founded The Cleveland Kangaroula Collective in 2020. She is a Certified Breastfeeding Educator (BAI), Birth Doula, Registered Kangaroula and provides perinatal support and education for birthing families. As a past NICU mother, Madison's passion for birth work began after the premature birth of her second baby. She became an advocate for moms in the NICU to support them on their mothering and breastfeeding journeys since 2016. She provides in-home and virtual perinatal and breastfeeding support to hundreds of families and is dedicated to protecting the mother infant relationship. Madison is a working artist, in which her works on motherhood have been internationally exhibited including the Mother Art Prize at Cromwell Place in London. She is also the Founder of the NICU Family Scholarship, Mama Bird Group Chat, Project NICU Advisory Board Member and Ohio Breastfeeding Alliance Active Member. She is a proud mother of 3 and lives in a Cleveland, OH.
Caitlin Chapman CBS LLL
Caitlin Chapman obtained her Certified Breastfeeding Specialist accreditation in May 2019. She is a second generation La Leche League leader and serves her community through volunteer lactation outreach programs and free support meetings. She also works closely with the Virginia Breastfeeding Coalition. In 2013, their second son was born premature. After time in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), she realized how deep the need was for parent advocacy and set a plan in motion. Becoming a Kangaroula and teaching parents about the power of skin to skin has been a dream come true. Caitlin is currently working towards becoming a certified birth doula, RDN, and IBCLC and co-founder of a nursing wear review website that provides honest views in today's competitive breastfeeding clothing industry, mammarybrands.com. She is the Director of Religious Exploration at the Olmsted Unitarian Universalist Congregation in North Olmsted, Ohio. Caitlin is originally from Boston, MA and lives near Akron, Ohio with her husband and their 3 small children whom they have homeschooled for 8 years and counting.
Tomesha D. Walker Doula
Mrs. Tomesha D. Walker is a birth support specialist, consultant, speaker, and trainer that focuses on developing and implementing programs to assist pre and post-pregnancy women. She is the Baby Birthing Godmother, your Doula, delivering the birth of your dreams with peace and power. Crushing fears and slapping myths to deliver hope, one bundle at a time. Mrs. Walker primarily works with Hospitals, Nonprofits and Community Organizations that seek tailored techniques and solutions for women and youth. As an International Bestselling author, Mrs. Walker uses her books to bring hope, support and encouragement women with the skill and knowledge to birth in peace and power. Her network of support rejoices to create "Fearless Moms" and was inspired by her Birth Doula experiences along with personally birthing four children, one of which was in the NICU due to prematurity and a kidney transplant recipient. Mrs. Walker's books including Purpose in Pain, Pregnancy Prayers Vol. 1, First Year? No Fear! and The Real Me provide hope, a better understanding of pregnancy, the phases, resources and how to defeat the natural fears that come as a part of the journey with encouragement. Tomesha will be attending the next Kangaroula Training in Feb. 2021!!! Join her in the movement for moms today, we all need one another.
Sarah Rubin PhD
Sarah Rubin, PhD is a medical anthropologist, researcher, teacher, and Assistant Professor at the Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, Cleveland Campus. She does participatory qualitative research on maternal and infant health. Recent projects include cross-cultural experiences of postpartum depression Cape Town, South Africa, experience of chronic stress for pregnant Black women at high risk of infant mortality in Cleveland, OH, and the effects of the Covid19 pandemic on prenatal care service delivery for vulnerable pregnant women in Columbus, OH. She is excited to incorporate her Kangaroula training into future research and hands-on work with moms and babies.
Aubrey Phelps MS RDN CLC
Aubrey is a registered functional nutritionist, perinatal fitness coach, lactation counselor, kangaroula, and advocate for women as they make the journey into motherhood. Specializing in perinatal and pediatric nutrition, Aubrey supports women in improving their health, cycles, and fertility so they can have a healthy pregnancy and reduce the risk of complications and preterm delivery. She works with women so they can thrive postpartum as they transition into motherhood and mothers who want to get their little one off to the right start with nutrition and health or those struggling with the anxiety of a child who isn’t growing as expected. She is a momma to 3 earthside babies and 3 angels she has yet to meet. After two traumatic births, miscarriages, feeding issues, a NICU stay, PPA, a VBA2C, and more, Aubrey became even more passionate about supporting mothers in their transition into motherhood. She is the owner of Matrescence Nutrition and loves working with women and families as a part of their village.
Danielle L. Breach CD (DONA)
Danielle is a Certified Birth Doula (DONA), Registered Kangaroula and has also completed training with CAPPA and Sufficient Grace Ministries for Perinatal Hospice and Bereavement. Danielle began her career as a Tech for Lake Health spending most of her years in the Same Day Surgery Department providing Pre and Post-operative care. After the birth of her 5th child she decided to change course to a path where her love for caregiving could be combined with her passion for birth and babies. She has been supporting families through their pregnancy, birth and Postpartum for 12 years now. Danielle’s passion for birth began after enduring a traumatic birth that resulted in her daughter having to stay in the NICU. She was determined to breastfeed and was unsure where to find adequate support. Filling the gap between medical and non-medical support, as well as the opportunity to provide gentle encouragement are just a few of the reasons she enjoys her job as a doula. Kangaroula training is just one more opportunity to provide the best care possible to the families with whom she has the good fortune to support.
Candace Gesicki DC
Dr. Candace Gesicki is the owner of Cleveland Chiropractic and Integrative Health Center and runs Mother’s Den Cleveland. She has a passion to support women and their families through their journey into motherhood. She is a Diplomate through the American Board of Chiropractic Acupuncture, a Mercier Therapy Practitioner, a BIRTHFIT Professional, DONA trained birth doula, and placenta encapsulator. She is certified in the Webster Technique through the ICPA and has taken extensive training to support women and their babies during this sacred time. She is an active member of International Cesarean Awareness Network (ICAN) of Greater Cleveland and hosts the Delivering Strength Podcast. Her oldest was born via unplanned cesarean and her youngest is her VBAC baby.
Dr. Candace resides in Broadview Heights with her husband, Eric, sons, Otto and Rhys, and dog, Heidi. Outside of the office, she enjoys all things Cleveland and spending time with her family.
Kristen Horvath-Broda LPCC-S
Kristen Horvath-Broda is a mental health counselor who specializes in working with children and families and trauma. She is training in EMDR and Sensorimotor Psychotherapy. Kristen has always had a strong interest in supporting women and girls, but after leading a perinatal loss group, her interest moved towards supporting moms who are struggling with pregnancy/infant loss and traumatic birth. It was her own difficult pregnancy, traumatic birth, and NICU experience that inspired her to further her practice to work with women who struggle with peri- and postpartum mood disorders and infertility issues. Kristen recently completed the advanced Kangaroula training and is excited to help support moms and babies through pregnancy, birth, and the initial bonding experience!
Emily Forsgren DC
Emily Forsgren is a Chiropractor at www.healthingoodhands.com with a special focus on preconception, pregnancy, postpartum, and pediatrics. She has advanced training in acupuncture, functional medicine, and craniosacral therapy. Emily is so proud to add “Kangaroula!” to her list of credentials! Spending time collaborating with and learning from the other Kangaroulas gives Emily a lot of hope. In addition to helping local families thrive, Emily loves spending time outside, getting dirty in her garden, squeezing in time to move and meditate, and cooking nourishing food for her family and friends.
Christine Cassella, MS, CD(BAI)
Christine is a mother of two young girls and has a broad background including training as a behavioral biologist, certified herbalist, and birth doula. Christine has been passionate about reproductive health and natural living throughout her life, but truly began to see the importance of an empowered pregnancy and childbirth when she was pregnant with her first child. It is her belief that birth and postpartum are pivotal times during a childbearing person’s life to claim their power, find their truth, and emerge as a new parent prepared to face all the challenges and joys that arise. Christine’s diverse skill set allows her to provide client care that is both evidence-based, intuitive, and parent-centered. Christine has special interests in teaching birthing people and their families how they can thrive using herbal remedies, and she is particularly interested in supporting parents desiring natural birth at home or hospital. She is a safe and inclusive doula and kangaroula for parents of all backgrounds and orientations. Learn more at www.resilientbirthbotanicals.com.
Cristin Tighe is a Cleveland Kangaroulas supporting partner from BirthWorks International, working with Kangaroula founders (Jill and Dr. Nils Bergman) to grow awareness of the value of Kangaroula care and support professional training and ongoing mentoring. BirthWorks is an international NGO, offering evidence-based training with a unique human-values philosophy approach to birth support, since 1981. BirthWorks certifies both Childbirth Educators and Doulas, some of whom are part of Cleveland Kangaroulas. Our synergistic vision includes expanding valuable unique skill sets of BirthWorkers to transform birth outcomes, especially though Kangaroula care, while working in partnership with all local stakeholders. Personally, Cristin is a Registered Kangaroula, also certified by both BirthWorks and DONA International, and has three children - her daughter was born at home in the water in Belgium and twin boys born via cesarean in CA. In 2008, she founded Conscious Empowered Birth longing to empower women to know their ability to birth naturally, to understand technology's value and to be informed about risky cascading interventions. Cristin and BirthWorks International are thrilled to join Cleveland Kangaroulas in developing a BirthWorkers Center of Excellence in Cleveland!