Kym Hodges, CCCE, CLD, ICCE
Kym has been teaching and supporting women since 1994; helping families to find their voice in labor and birth; understanding that birth is a normal, life changing experience and with understanding, positive support, and respectful communication we can bring babies into the world safer and healthier. She is the owner of Traditions of Love Childbirth Services, LLC where she provides private childbirth education, breastfeeding education, sex education, and labor doula services; she is also a professional speaker on the subjects. She is a national and international certified childbirth educator and labor doula trainer for CAPPA, conducting workshops all around the country. She began her work in Hawaii in 1994 with ICEA; she went on to become a member of CAPPA, the World Largest Professional Childbirth Education Organization, in 2000. She held the position of Executive Director of Childbirth Education Programs and Executive Director of Marketing. Kym also has a successful background in Marketing and Event Planning, having raise thousands of dollars for non-profits. Kym has lived Gainesville, FL. since 2001, where she has raised two amazing children, has educated over 4000 families and support more than 250 births. Kym has been a FSTM Board member since 2011.
Jane Frances Houston DNP, CNM, ARNP, RM
Jane began her nursing and midwifery education in Scotland where she became a registered general nurse RGN with a Bachelor’s degree and completed her diploma in midwifery in 1992 to become a Registered Midwife. She has always felt called to the profession of midwifery in particular. Jane has delivered over 2000 babies on 4 continents, and each birth has been very special to her. She entered graduate school at University of Florida in 2001 and completed her MSN studies so she would be able to provide midwifery care in Gainesville, Florida. Jane was in the first DNP class at University of Florida, graduating in 2009 and continued her career in education becoming Director of Midwifery there in 2011-2015. She recently became clinical director for midwifery and women’s health at the historic Frontier Nursing University in Kentucky. She is delighted to join the faculty at FSTM as a board member.
Susan Nelson, ENP, CPM
Susan is a Regional Account Manager for Cassidian Communications, a global firm specializing in public safety IT systems. Prior to that she held the position of Alachua County, Florida, Communications Bureau Chief and E-911 Coordinator for over ten years, and served as the manager of marketing and programs for an international environmental nonprofit before that. Susan has a Bachelor’s degree in organizational communication from the University of Colorado and is a Florida State University Certified Public Manager. Susan has three daughters, all born into the hands of midwives, and as a result, has been an advocate of and activist for midwifery, the midwives model of care, and breastfeeding promotion in the North Florida area for almost three decades. She is married and lives in Gainesville.
Sylvia is the founder and Director of Morning Meadow Preschool and Kindergarten, a Waldorf based early childhood program. Ms. Paluzzi has been working with children for 25 years and has been educated at the University of Florida as well as receiving her degree as a Waldorf educator in Early Childhood from SunBridge College in New York. Ms. Paluzzi was the founding member of the Friends of Midwives Gainesville chapter and served as president for ten years. FOM is a grass roots organization dedicated to informing families on all birth options available. She has 3 sons, all brought into the world by the loving care of a licensed midwife.
Heart served as Executive Director of FSTM for five years. She recently retired and co-founded the River Phoenix Center for Peacebuilding, and serves as the Board President of RPCP. Inspired by the life of her son River, RPCP is dedicated to raising awareness and teaching skills that empower individuals and groups in the transformation of behavior from violent to peaceful. Heart considers one of her greatest contributions to be that of birthing her five beautiful children naturally. She believes that educating, empowering and caring for women before, during and after the birthing process bring an essential ingredient to the health of families. This is the care that is given by midwives!
MaryAnn Smith, CNM, MSN
I have been a midwife for nearly 35 years and was working in Ocala for my first job. I was drawn to Gainesville because of The Birth Center of Gainesville and the lay (not licensed, yet) midwifery presence. Since 1985, after becoming part of The Birth Center, I have worked with licensed midwives as preceptor, co worker, and legislative worker. I was on the Florida Council of Licensed Midwives for many years-for initial and ongoing legislation. I have been involved with FSTM from its beginnings in various capacities….preceptor, consultant, teacher, landlord, friend. Now that I am retired (other than various volunteer jobs), I look forward to working with FSTM again and to further promote midwifery in the state of Florida and beyond.
Tamara Taitt, MA, LMFT
A licensed marriage and family therapist who trained as a midwife in the Miami Dade College program before it closed, Tamara has a varied background in women’s reproductive health activism and has been working in maternal, infant and child health for the last decade. Tamara has a deep interest in the sustainability of the midwifery profession and politics as it relates to birth. She was the Southeast representative on the board of the Midwives Alliance of North America for seven years. Tamara currently serves on the board of the Foundation for the Advancement of Midwifery and is the co-owner/founder of a group of birth-related businesses in Miami, including: The Gathering Place, a pregnancy and parenting resource center; Peapod Essentials, a natural parenting store; Blue Mountain Midwives, a home birth practice and non-profit Project Motherpath.