Beth Cannon, LM, CPM
My first inspiration on the path of normal birth occurred in 1982, when I was 12 years old. My oldest sister Mary decided to have a home birth. Her choice to do so gave me the advantage of trusting birth from an early age. She exposed me to Ina May Gaskin and Spiritual Midwifery. What an incredible gift this was…Little did I know at that point of my life that I would be called to become a midwife!
In 1990, I was primary labor support to one of my other sisters, Jackie. Attending the hospital birth of her son opened my eyes to the reality of the medical model of birth. I was shocked at the routine and impersonal care that she and her son received. That made an imprint in my mind with images that will never be forgotten.
When I became pregnant in 2000, I knew that I wanted to be present in my body for the birth of my child. I knew that I would seek out midwifery care, and that I wanted to actively participate in my radical rite of passage into motherhood.
My first daughter was born gently into water on Winter solstice and we had a beautiful birth center birth! After her birth, I became an advocate for birth options and informed choices. I was called to midwifery after the home water birth of my son in 2004. I promptly started on my path by becoming a certified birth doula. Though this was rewarding to support couples on their journey becoming parents, it continually brought me to birth in hospital setting. I knew that I needed to work with families that were choosing the alternative route. As luck would have it, doors opened for me naturally and I was asked to apprentice with the midwives who were present during my son’s birth. I accepted their offer, and jumped in!
I enrolled in school at The National Midwifery Institute and juggled the demands of apprenticing with a busy midwifery practice in Los Angeles, being a wife, raising my children as well as giving birth to another daughter (this time, on land!), finishing school, passing the North American Registry of Midwives (NARM) Exam in 2009 to become a Certified Professional Midwife (CPM), and becoming a Licensed Midwife (LM) by the California Medical Board in 2010. In 2012, I attended the International Breech Conference and hope to go abroad in the next year to gain more skills and education on Breech Birth.
It has been quite the journey, and I feel fortunate and blessed to be at every birth that I am called to be at. I currently attend births with many midwives in Los Angeles, both Licensed Midwives, and Certified Nurse Midwives, as well as assisting an OB/GYN who attends home births in the greater Los Angeles and Ventura county vicinity.
My small private practice is conveniently located in Sherman Oaks, CA.
Laura Burnett, LM, CPM
The first birth Laura witnessed changed her life! It was her senior year of college- a dear friend invited Laura to attend her first birth. Once Gabriel was born, Laura knew she had to become a midwife. After receiving her Bachelor's degree from the University of Texas in Sociology and French, Laura moved to California to enter the world of midwifery.
Laura joined the Sanctuary in 2009 as a junior apprentice. Passionate about public access to quality maternity care and birth education, she volunteered as Student Representative for the California Association of Midwives. Laura then attended Elizabeth Davis’ Heart & Hands classes in San Francisco and enrolled in the National Midwifery Institute.
Laura traveled in 2010 to meet Ina May Gaskin and take workshops at The Farm in Summertown, Tennessee.
In 2011, Laura spent 3 months at Better Birth in Utah where she experienced high volume birth in birth centers and was elected CAM Secretary. In 2012, she passed the NARM licensing exam despite being 37 weeks pregnant. She graduated from NMI and gave birth to a beautiful baby girl named Morgan. Soon thereafter, Laura became California Licensed Midwife #362!
Laura’s skills and passions also include: herbal healing, placenta encapsulation, nutrition, yoga, postpartum care, compassionate childrearing, empowering women, cooking and literature. She’s also never met a Zumba class she didn’t like.
In the future, Laura hopes to travel to learn more about the international practice of midwifery. It is her dream to visit Bumi Sehat in Bali to work alongside her hero, Robin Lim. Laura also plans to travel abroad to learn the art of breech delivery.
Tasha Boyd, LM, CPM
Tasha is Licensed Midwife (LM) by the Medical Board of California and a Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) through the North American Registry of Midwives (NARM). She holds an Associate of Science in Midwifery degree from the Midwives College of Utah, a MEAC accredited school, and a Bachelor of Music degree in Woodwind Performance from Florida State University. She maintains current certifications in Neonatal Resuscitation and Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers.
After completing her undergraduate degree, Tasha left the classical music world to pursue a career in the the holistic health field. She worked at a wellness center in Santa Monica, CA
for nearly a decade where she was immersed in herbal traditions, natural health, massage,
cleansing and holistic treatment of diseases. It was during this time that she gave birth to both of her children at home, peacefully with a midwife. She felt magnetically drawn to women’s health and could no longer deny her deep calling to support families during birth.
In 2012, Tasha trained as a birth doula and began supporting families in that role shortly thereafter. The first birth she attended occurred just after midnight on New Year’s Day of 2013! Bearing witness to such an incredible event amid the festive cheers of neighbors ringing in the New Year is etched in Tasha’s memory. She knew then that she had found her true calling and needed to become a midwife.
Tasha enrolled in the midwifery program at the Midwives College of Utah in 2015 and graduated with honors. During her four years of midwifery clinical training she worked in home birth practices (Birthing Rhythm Midwifery and Beach Cities Birth Services) and several free standing birth centers in Utah. She considers herself privileged to have learned from six Certified Professional Midwives, two Certified Nurse Midwives and an obstetrician/gynecologist.
She believes that each birthing person has the capacity to have a positive birth. Tasha is passionate about providing individualized care and in doing so empowering families to claim their own unique birth experience. Having personally grown up in a non-traditional family structure, she embraces diverse families of all shapes and sizes, and the unique needs of each family she serves. When Tasha is not at a birth or working, you will probably find her spending time with her family, playing with her orange tabby cat Buttercup, or enjoying time at the beach.
Stephanie Ricaldi , Student Midwife
Stephanie was born and raised in the Los Angeles area. As a young girl she knew she wanted to help pregnant people through their journey of welcoming their babies into this world when she watched her first birth video in the 9th grade. Furthering her education, Stephanie earned her Bachelor’s Degree from UCLA in Biology and minored in LGBTQ studies.
While in UCLA, Stephanie began to involve herself within the medical community. She volunteered in the Mattel’s Children’s Hospital in UCLA where she cared for the psychosocial aspects and needs of children. In addition, she worked as a Lead Clinic Assistant Intern at the Venice Family Clinic serving both those in need of primary health care and women’s health and pregnancy.
After graduation, she took some time to work and travel the world: Brazil, Paraguay, Mexico,Hungary, Austria, Germany, and Spain, where she learned about the history, culture, language and tried new foods.
Upon returning, Stephanie came across midwifery. Everything was falling right into place. She became a doula to gain her experience. With this experience, she realized the birth community was not only rewarding but a movement to better women’s health care, in which she now gets to become a part of. Stephanie is now in her second year at Nizhoni Institute of Midwifery in San Diego. She is a licensed phlebotomist and is BLS and NRP certified. She is currently working on placenta encapsulation.
“Breaking down barriers, eliminating fear and giving pregnant people a choice and a voice.”
Jessica Cremin, Student Midwife
Although Jessica had not previously been exposed to birth work or pregnancy, she knew from the time she was a younger teenager that it was something she was passionate about. Once she was finally able to put a name to the profession she had been called to, Jessica worked toward being admitted into the University of Vermont, College of Nursing and Health Sciences as a nursing major, where she began my studies in the fall of 2016. Throughout her first year there she loved being exposed to healthcare in detail, but she felt that something was missing from the medical and nursing models of care. Jessica ended up asking some midwives in Los Angeles if she could work with them to see how the midwifery model of care truly worked. She never would have dreamed that Beth would take her on as a
junior student and mentee, and has been lucky enough to work with her since the summer of 2017 during school breaks. Having been witness to home births and the midwifery model, Jessica's eyes were opened to a form of care that she didn’t know she could provide. Skills she's been developing with Beth and the other midwives on the team have made it increasingly easy to care for patients and clients, while prioritizing their autonomy and sense of self. She is always excited to incorporate what she learns with the midwives into her nursing practice at school. In addition to being a student both with UVM and Birthing Rhythm, Jessica completed her Doula Training in June of 2018 and was ecstatic to adopt that role as well. Working with the midwives at Birthing Rhythm has been a life-changing experience personally, spiritually, and professionally. She is forever grateful to work with women who share such a great passion with her, and to bear witness to personable, gentle, and well-rounded care for women and families. Jessica awaits her future work and studies eagerly.
Juli Anderson, Midwife Assistant
I am the mother of two (now grown) children, and my own experience of having hospital births left me disappointed and disempowered. I was called to be a part of the growing movement that led me to step fully into the alternative birth world and become a homebirth midwife. I wanted to be of service to birthing families, and empower them with more choices around their births. Your birth will be without a doubt one of the most profound experiences of your life, and choosing your birth professionals is one of the most important decisions you will make. I believe that it is important that expectant parents and birth professionals connect on a deep level to insure that the birth experience is as positive as possible.
I believe passionately that birth is a spiritual process. Ultimately, I trust that birth is a natural process and if left uninterrupted, happens beautifully and gracefully. Each birth has a story and that story has already been written - I’m here to hold space for you and remind you of your strength as a family. Parents connect with me because I believe that birth is a spiritual journey, and everything that is involved with birth; preconception, conception, pregnancy, delivery, postpartum, etc. is a spiritual journey.