Thirteen new midwives plan to take on the world.

On Saturday, June 10th, thirteen midwives graduated from Birthwise Midwifery School in Bridgton, Maine. Hailing from seven U.S. states, this group of skilled graduates will go on to practice natural birth and reproductive care in practices across the country.

Brit Averill of Fairfax, VA will work part time as a certified professional midwife while studying nurse-midwifery at Frontier University in Kentucky. She will also run Nova Women’s Health Collective, an important public health initiative.

Elise Chiavon of Stockton Springs, ME will work as a birth assistant for several months until she and her partner, Marc, decide where they’d like to settle down. When they decide on a place, Elise plans to open her own midwifery practice there.

Connie Eccles of Traverse City, MI will work with mentor Jillian Bennett at Family Tree Midwifery Maternity in Mount Pleasant, Michigan. She will also assist at Dance of Life Midwifery in Traverse City.

Gayle Eckey of Sag Harbor, NY will continue to practice with her Birthwise preceptor for at least another year. She is considering moving her family to Maine to practice indefinitely in her community here.

Molly Geisler of Melrose, MA will continue her work with The Birth Cottage in Massachusetts after graduation. She hopes to eventually apply her expertise wherever it is most needed: refugee camps, India, or closer to home in New Orleans or Colorado.


Janis Gildin of Cortlandt Manor, NY will join Seventh Moon Homebirth Midwifery Services in New Jersey. There, she will work with mentors Vicki Hedley and Raizy Goldsmith to provide experienced midwifery care to homebirth clients.

Jessamy B. Luthin of Orono, ME will join Holly No. 7 Birth Center in Bangor, ME as a staff midwife. She plans to offer her clients placenta encapsulation services alongside exceptional midwifery care.

Sara (Kate) Marx of Portland, ME plans to take the North American Registry of Midwives (NARM) exam that will qualify her to practice midwifery as a certified professional midwife in the United States.

Jennifer L. Moyer of Findlay, OH currently runs Northwest Ohio Birth Services, a successful doula practice. She plans to gain experience as a Toledo Midwives staff midwife and, eventually, to turn her doula practice into a comprehensive midwifery service.

Kelsey Scherer of Concord, NH plans to return home to New Hampshire to practice as a midwife. She will also pursue her passion for teaching and hopes to grow the midwifery profession by investing in the next generation of midwives.

Salka Thali also plans to take the NARM exam that will qualify her to practice midwifery as a certified professional midwife in the United States.

Ann Wilde of Neenah, WI is currently practicing as a CPM/LM back in her hometown. She intends to launch her own independent practice, Embrace Birth Care, this month in Neenah. She will also provide traveling midwifery support to other midwifery practices and birth centers in the area. She hopes this project will help midwives take the time to focus on self-care and, ultimately, avoid burn out.

Lauren Woolson-Rudrick of Mount Vernon, OH founded a practice, Sentinel Midwifery, with her mentor, Becky Frye. She plans to stay close to home in Ohio and serve families as a community midwife. She also hopes to continue participating in midwifery research, as well as exploring fun and creative ways to further the health movement in her birth community and beyond.

Jahan Zuberi of Minneapolis, MN will join a global midwifery course where she will practice midwifery in India and Pakistan. She is passionate about global midwifery, diversifying the midwifery profession, and creating better accessibility to midwifery through licensure.

`Learn more about Birthwise’s midwifery programs.