Wholistic Midwifery School of Southern California
The Association for
Wholistic Maternal and Newborn Health
A 501 (c) (3) non-profit corporation, 509 (a) (2) public charity
We are a community-based organization comprised of maternal-child health professionals and concerned citizens dedicated to improving the quality of maternity care and the experience of childbirth and new motherhood for women and their newborns.
Who We Are
We are a community-based organization comprised of maternal-child health professionals and concerned citizens dedicated to improving the quality of maternity care and the experience of childbirth and new motherhood for women and their newborns. We promote a self-growth approach to pregnancy and the normalcy of childbirth. As advocates for mothers and babies, we seek to ensure that each mother is treated with dignity and respect during her pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum periods. We are inspired by the possibility of childbirth to transform mothers, fathers, birthworkers and society. Our organization develops innovative initiatives to fill the gap in supportive services for pregnant women and provides training and networking opportunities for perinatal professionals.
About Our Organization
Founded as an educational venture in 1993, Wholistic Midwifery School of Southern California started DBA The Association for Wholistic Maternal and Newborn Health in 2011. We are a training and advocacy organization with a grass roots, community-based approach to support direct-service providers to promote the health of mothers, infants, and families. We are a 501 (c) (3) non profit corporation, 509 (a) (2) public charity.
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, PRESIDENT AND CHAIR OF THE BOARD
Cordelia S. Hanna, MPH, CHES, ICCE, CLE, CBA
Phone: 626-388-2191 Ext. 1
Cordelia Hanna serves as our President, CEO and Executive Director. She earned her Masters in Public Health (MPH) in Health Education and Promotion and Maternal Child Health from Loma Linda University in Loma Linda, CA in 2008. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in Health Education and Promotion/Global Health at Walden University. She is a Certified Health Education Specialist, accredited by National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, the gold standard for professional health educators. Cordelia has worked for twenty five years as a childbirth educator, lactation educator and counselor, birth assistant/doula and health education consultant and midwife assistant in private practice, clinics, hospitals, doctor’s offices, and federally qualified health centers in Los Angeles. She is a Certified Childbirth Educator (ICEA), Certified Birth Assistant (ALACE), Certified Lactation Educator (CAPPA) and Postpartum Doula. Since 1991, Cordelia has attended births in hospitals, birth centers and private homes as a Doula, Monitrice, Assistant Midwife and Primary Midwife Under Supervision.
Cordelia worked for nearly a decade at The Pasadena Public Health Department on the Maternal Child and Adolescent Health Outreach Program and The Black Infant Health Program, a state-funded program to reduce African-American health disparities. While working at The Pasadena Public Health Department, she conducted training for staff and community members and initiated and managed a volunteer community-based doula program and volunteer breastfeeding peer counselor program, developed a very successful childbirth education curriculum and taught patient education classes thus providing an unmet need for prenatal education for Pasadena’s Medi-Cal population.
In addition, Cordelia is Co-Chair of the Evidence in Action Committee of the Coalition for Improving Maternity Services (CIMS), and formerly was the Co-Chair of the Los Angeles Best Babies Network Healthy Births Learning Collaborative for SPA 3 (San Gabriel Valley). She was a delegate at the first international conference on maternal mortality Women Deliver in London in 2007, and remains active in global efforts to reduce maternal mortality in the U.S. and abroad.
Cordelia is mother to two homeborn, breastfed, family-bedded children who are now bright and capable young adults. She has family ties to Kenya, East Africa.
Debbie Benton, ICCE, CEHC, CLEC, CD, CNHC, C. RP
Phone: (626) 388-2191 ext. 2
Debbie Paeff Benton has been involved in the birth field for 13 years. She is a Certified Childbirth Educator (ICEA – The International Childbirth Education Association), a Certified Expectations Health Coach ( Dr. Sears Wellness Institute), a Certified Lactation Educator Counselor (UCSD), Certified as a Doula specializing in acupressure for pregnancy care and labor support, a Certified Natural Health Consultant and a Reiki practitioner. She is also a Certified Midwife Assistant, working in birth centers and at homebirths. Debbie has been a volunteer with us since 2014, helping us with our annual Mother-Friendly Childbirth Symposium. She is a mother of three children who were born in birth centers.
CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER/TREASURER
Chinedu “Ned” Nwaka
(626) 388-2191 ext. 2
Chinedu “Ned” Nwaka is originally from Nigeria. He has had careers in Architecture, Banking, Healthcare and IT and he has a mixed bag of qualifications, from Nigeria, England and Germany. He received his bachelors and first masters degrees in Architecture from Nigeria, a diploma in health and social care from the Open University, Milton Keynes, England, and completed a program in Information Technology from the University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany. He is presently completing an MBA program with DeVry University, California. He is married and has a child.