For us to put our best foot forward as an organization rooted in social justice, we must listen to the voices that are often overlooked in the birth industry, the doula profession, and society in general. The SJSC exists because we hold space for those voices. We believe in the need for constant self-examination. We’re forever grateful for every one of these people for their individual roles in helping us reflect, learn and grow.

Allison Balsley

Ally is a Deaf certifying birth and postpartum doula with DTI. Her own experience struggling in finding a doula that she could have direct communication with inspired her in becoming one so that other deaf individuals in her area wouldn’t have to face similar challenges. She is deeply passionate about advocacy especially for deaf families. She values cross-cultural communication, inclusion and accessibility for all. She strives to learn and understand other cultures and is always open to learning other perspectives. She believes that each family’s journey is unique and precious and that they all deserve equality in resources, information, and birthing opportunities.  She looks forward to taking down barriers and building bridges between the birthing world and other communities.

She co-owns Hand Waves Birth Services and lives in Frederick, MD with her loving partner, two little babes, and a fur baby.

Brittany Noschese

Brittany is Deaf certifying birth and postpartum doula with Doula Training International, and a co-owner of Hand Waves Birth. The interest in birthing world blossomed after the birth of her second child. The experience between her two births were different. For the first birth, she lacked information of her choices, and she was so much more empowered in the second one. That led to her determination and passion to make sure the other families have a positive empowered births, and for them to be informed and aware of their options. As a Deaf doula, she aims to make the birthing world accessible with communication, information, and empowerment in the Deaf/signing community. She’s a huge advocate for births, regardless of location and method. Every birth is unique and beautiful!

Christian Lovehall

Christian Lovehall is a certified doula based in Philadelphia, PA. He began his own doula journey after witnessing many of his Trans, Queer and Gender-Non Conforming friends, face and deal with homophobia and transphobia while pregnant and birthing.

Certified through Doula Trainings International (DTI), Christian has a strong focus on QTPOC advocacy and liberation. Seeing the needs of the LGBTQIA2P community, especially QTPOC, during his experience as an activist, revolutionary and brother, ultimately led Christian to seek his Doula certification, in order to be the change he wishes to see created in the world, for reproductive justice is social justice.

Focused on supporting Trans and Queer individuals and families through pregnancy, birth and postpartum, Brotha Doula is an affirming resource for providing hands on support and education for birthing LGBTQIA2P individuals

Maggie Connolly

Maggie Connolly is a DTI birth and postpartum doula and social worker living in Brooklyn. She has worked for over 10 years in the field of developmental disability. More recently, she has been drawn to advocating for reproductive rights and has volunteered with organizations that promote comprehensive Sex Ed and pro-choice policies.  She firmly believes in every person having access to the resources needed to make empowered, autonomous decisions regarding health and reproduction. She is really excited to work with and lean from the DTI Social Justice Steering Committee!

Marleen Jett

Marleen Jett, owner of Birth With Nature, is a birth and postpartum doula in Los Angeles.  Marleen provides deep emotional and physical care for families during birth and early parenthood. She incorporates her love for local organic food by educating families on nutrition. Before becoming a doula Marleen worked as a child care provider where she gain an interest in natural birth. Marleen currently works close with the Joy in Birthing foundation which serves those who are pregnant and homeless, or in the foster care system. Marleen has a passion in social service. She is dedicated to providing a safe place for the LGBTQ community and victims of sexual abuse in the birthing community.

Rory P. O'Brien: MSW, MPH

Rory is a labor and postpartum doula providing care especially for LGBTQ parents. In addition to being a doula, Rory works with Polaris to end the human trafficking of youth and teaches Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at American University. Rory is an experienced grassroots organizer and activist with a decade of involvement in reproductive, sexual, racial, and labor justice movements.

Sabrina Kline

Sabrina “Dolly The Doula” Kline a Bronx native, now resides in Cortlandt Manor with her Husband Stuart. A veteran and Army wife, Sabrina is a woman of color with a passion for serving others. She believes strongly in inclusion and that it starts with education. She is now a pregnancy, post-partum and puberty doula as well as the owner of We Can Do-ula!

As a Queer Afro-Latina in DTI she was encouraged to speak up about birthing concerns within her community and thats where she found solace with the SJSC.

Stacy Ricker: RMT, Birth and Postpartum Doula

I come from New Brunswick, Canada and have a background (10+ yrs) as a massage therapist specializing in pre/postnatal/infant massage. I identify as queer/gender fluid and feel strongly in the visibility and inclusivity for trans/gender non conforming individuals as a whole, especially in the birthing community.

I became a doula years ago through the wonderful community of DTI. I have been living in NYC for 2.5 years. I am very excited to be joining the SJSC and making an impact in widening the scope of how the birthing world and its community views inclusively.