President: Raeben Nolan
Raeben Nolan has been practicing as a doula for 13 years and has been working at Birthingway College of Midwifery as the Specialized Programs Coordinator since August of 2013. She is the owner and founder of Tree of Life Placenta Services. Her work at Birthingway involves mentoring doulas, juggling multiple programs and working with the State of Oregon to promote greater access to doulas. She is one of the founding members of the Oregon Doula Association.
Vice President: Courtney Everson, PhD
Courtney Everson, PhD, is a Medical Anthropologist and the Dean of Graduate Studies at the Midwives College of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT. Dr. Everson is also a birth doula practitioner, the Director of Research Education for the Midwives Alliance of North America (MANA) Division of Research (DOR); an Accreditation Review Committee (ARC) member for the Midwifery Education Accreditation Council (MEAC); and serves on the Boards of Directors for the Australasian Professional Doula Regulatory Association (APDRA), the Association of Midwifery Educators (AME), and the Academic Collaborative for Integrative Health (ACIH). Dr. Everson's research and teaching specializations include: maternal-child health; human childbirth; adolescent pregnancy and parenting; psychosocial stress; social support; doula care; midwifery care; research and clinical ethics; collaborative care models; health inequities; cultural competency/humility; social justice; and underserved populations. She actively publishes in academic forums, and is an invited, avid speaker at local, national and international venues.
Secretary/Treasurer: Krystal Stanley
Krystal Stanley has worked in the healthcare industry for over 14 years, in both the clinic setting, as well as the administration office. Krystal was asked to join the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative at Adventist Medical Center, where she is currently employed, and has been an integral part in creating educational materials for the staff, nurses and providers. This has created an opportunity to share the benefits a doula provides, and has proven to be key in doula acceptance in a clinical setting. Krystal’s long term goal is to coordinate and build a diversified program at her local hospital, making doula services available for all women. She feels the first step in meeting her goal is to network and build relationships with the local doula community.
Communications Chair: Heather Meyer
Heather Meyer holds a world-wide vision of health equity and gentle supported birthing for all families. Her innate trust in a mother's strength and individual family’s birth journey was seeded at her sister's home birth when she was 2 1/2, and acts as a foundation for her practice. In 2004 she began supporting births, and in 2011 completed her Birth and Postpartum Doula Certification at the Australian Doula College in Sydney. Heather is a highly skilled and experienced doula, having supported hundreds of families from a multitude of backgrounds both in and out of the hospital. Her openness and calming presence combined with professionalism and broad skill set, make her a heartening presence in the birth room. In 2013, she helped to establish a hospital-based doula program at the Providence Maternal Care Clinic in Oregon, where she continues to practice as an integral member in a fully integrated team model of care. Heather is also a talented massage therapist specializing in pregnancy, a group facilitator, Artist and has extensive experience working with children with intellectual disabilities.
Membership Chair: Leticia West
Leticia West is currently a birth and postpartum doula in Portland, Oregon. She is a professional in women’s reproductive health issues, with over 15 years’ experience in the field in Georgia, Washington D.C, and Portland, Oregon. Prior to becoming a doula, Leticia served as a membership director for a national non-profit women’s reproductive health organization, where she built and fostered relationships, raised funds and oversaw field standard compliance for members. She worked with over 400 hospitals, clinics, non-profit organizations and individuals to assess their provider and clinic needs as well as solicit new hospitals and clinics to become members of the organization worldwide. In her previous work she also was responsible for overseeing that all member hospitals and clinics complied with HIPPA and the Joint Commission standards of practice. Leticia holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Women Studies from the University of Georgia, and is a Certified Lactation Counselor. She is excited to be serving as the Membership Chair for the Oregon Doula Associations, Board of Directors, and looks forward to continuing the work that ODA has done for doulas statewide.
Diverse Communities Chair: Kimberly Porter, MSW, QMHP
Kimberly Porter has worked with infants, toddlers, adolescents, couples and families in the mental health field for over 26 years. She works at The Black Parent Initiative as the Program Manager of the Together We Can Home Visiting Program serving African/ African- American and Multi-Ethnic teen parents. She is also a Birth and Postpartum Doula with culturally-specific training through The International Center for Traditional Childbearing and as a South African Blessed Way Doula. Kimberly has specialized training and certification in Infant Mental Health, School Social Work, Infant Massage, Marriage & Couple Therapy and Infant-Parent Psychotherapy. Kimberly serves on the Oregon Doula Association Board of Directors as the Diverse Communities Chair, African-American Breastfeeding Coalition, ICTC's African-American Childbirth Educators Advisory Committee, Multnomah County Home Visiting Community of Practice and Oregon Infant Mental Health Advisory Board. Also as a means to broaden Kimberly’s scope of practice she is currently working towards becoming an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant and Childbirth Educator.
Kimberly has a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in Psychology/Sociology from Kent State University and Masters of Social Work degree from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor graduating Magna Cum Laude. She is dedicated, passionate and proven to be leader in reducing infant/maternal mortality rates in the Portland black community, an activist for social/reproductive justice and voice and advocate for women in improving their birth outcomes. Her ultimate mission is to diversify the doula profession in the State of Oregon and ensure that all families have access to a doula if they would like one. Kimberly has two children and loves being an actively involved parent. In her free time she enjoys reading, walks in the park, reflection time at the beach and chatting with friends over a warm chai latte.
Member-at-Large: Tricia Merritt
Tricia Merritt sought out doula work after her mother shared her traumatic birth experience. She went on to complete Doulas of North America's (DONA) labor and postpartum doula trainings, she is now a certified labor doula. Tricia is a member of Renaissance Childbirth and Postpartum Professionals, specializing in providing postpartum support to clients with twins. Tricia has volunteered as a birth/labor doula with Gateway Doula Project since November of 2012. Tricia believes the most important work she can do is with helping people and their families. She was born and raised in northwest Ohio, graduated from Bowling Green State University with a Bachelor of Science in Social Work in 2007. Tricia then pursued a Master of Social Work degree, graduating in 2011 from San Diego State University. She has lived in Portland, Oregon since April of 2012.
Policy and Advocacy Chair: Jesse Remer, CD/PCD (DONA), BDT/PDT (DONA), LCCE
Jesse Remer is a visionary in the field of integrated healthcare. She believes doulas illuminate the heart of birth and has supported thousands of families throughout her twenty year career. She brings her skills as a doula, trainer, speaker, writer, change agent, advocate and resource to support the creation of new models of maternity care. She is the founder of Mother Tree International and a DONA-International birth and postpartum doula trainer and has trained doulas around the world. She is a staff doula with Providence Health Systems and was a part of the clinical design team for their ground-breaking Pregnancy Care Package. A founding member of the Oregon Doula Association Jesse also contributes on the Traditional Healthcare Workers Systems Integration Subcommittee at the Oregon Health Authority. She is a Lamaze Childbirth educator with Adventist Health Systems and is a part of the Northwest Area Childbirth Education Forum (NACEF) board. She has a background in marketing, event planning, systems transformation change and has a passion for seeing innovative development to improve the lives of families. Her own beloved family includes two free-range boys, dogs, cats, goats, horses and assorted international guests.
Education and Resources Chair: Deb Catlin
Deb Catlin has been in the field of childbirth education and birth doula support for 30 years. She has come to know that pregnancy, birth, and early parenthood are the most formative times for the baby and the family, and what happens during this period has a long lasting effect for the future. Her experience is diverse, working in hospital, home and birth center settings and with special circumstances such as adoption, multiples, and complicated pregnancies or births. Deb is a DONA International Certified Birth Doula and Birth Doula Trainer and conducts doula trainings around the state of Oregon. She has also educated many professionals throughout her career, including doulas, nurses, midwives, physicians, community organizations, and social workers. Deb is a founding member of the Oregon Doula Association and also sits on the Traditional Healthcare Workers Systems Integration Subcommittee. She is dedicated to assisting Oregon State in implementing our landmark Birth Doula Care Program by providing education and counsel to doulas, care providers, health care systems, and the social service communities. She is a mother of four (including twins) and a grandmother of 7. She proudly co-authored the book, Mothering Twins.