The Board of Directors of DASC

Doulas Association of Southern California

This is the Board of Directors of DASC. The Doulas Association of Southern California was founded in 1997. We are a non-profit professional membership association of birthworkers led and run by a volunteer Board of Directors. 

Meet the Board

Doula picture
Erin Fitzsimmons

President

I feel fortunate to have found the Doula community in Southern California through DASC.  I am a trained Postpartum Doula through DONA International, a trained  New Parent Educator, and have a certificate in Patient Advocacy from UCLA Extension.  What drew me to this work is my fundamental belief that all families deserve support when a newborn joins their family. I look forward to continuing to grow in this field and supporting the Doula community with educational programming and opportunities for connection.

I have two wonderful children and before I became a mother I worked in film production and development.  Originally from New York City, I moved to the westside of Los Angeles in 1998.

West LA Doulas

 

Sarah Pinder
Sarah Pinder

Vice President

 

In 2019 I became a postpartum doula and have really gained so much insight from my membership through DASC. Through serving on the DASC Board of Directors, I am looking forward to giving back to the organization and hoping that I can provide assistant to the board, as well as the organization at-large. Considered a jack-of-all-trades, having worked in administration, website content, TV, and non-profit counseling. I’m looking forward to offering my time and perhaps a voice to new postpartum-doulas and those beginning in this profession.

West LA Doulas

Michelle
Michelle Brenhaug

Secretary

I am a trained birth doula and working toward certification with DONA International. I was trained in the fall of 2020 through Bini Birth and have loved almost everything involved with doula work since then. I have 2 daughters and experienced birth trauma with my first labor and birth experience which is one of the things that pushed me toward pursuing this work. I have found myself the most alive when guiding and accompanying others, whether it be children, friends, or aging persons. Also, since becoming a mother, I have discovered an even deeper ability in myself to intuit someone's needs, sit with, guide, and offer care as they need it. I am also Japanese-American, educated as an engineer and worked as an engineer for 9 years. I find that the combination of my aptitude for technical things, attention to detail, and empathic, intuitive disposition makes me uniquely fit for birth work.

The Tenderhearted Doula

Lucy
lucy roberts

Treasurer

Originally from Carlsbad, California, I am a Birth Doula and ASL Interpreter.  I moved to Los Angeles in 2008 for college. After graduating with a degree in Musical Theater, I dedicated my education to learning American Sign Language. While training to be an ASL interpreter, I gave birth to my daughter, Lily, in 2018 and found my passion for birth work after that experience. It was a long road to get to this point, but I know that supporting birthing people is what I was meant to do. I constantly strive to better myself and my work through community and education.

I am so excited to join the DASC board and to serve the birthworker community in Southern California. “Live and Love. There isn’t time for anything else”

Lucy My Doula

Anika Das
anika das

Director of Programming 

I started my training as a yoga instructor from Thailand followed by Rishikesh and Mumbai, I have been teaching yoga for over 5 years now. During this time as a yoga teacher I expanded my training as a Birth and Postpartum Doula, nutritionist and lactation educator, which increases my scope of expertise while working with pregnant mamas.

My passion to pursue a career in doula work started when I was teaching pre-and post natal yoga . Throughout these experiences, I have found that a woman’s birth and postpartum story becomes a permanent and critical part of who she is.

I truly believe that one cannot give out of an empty cup and so as a doula it is my goal to help women and their partners to not only focus on the baby but themselves too, to make them feel the most confident, calm and to educate them through this beautiful and life changing journey.

The Baby Doula Co.

tracy
tracy hartley

Director of Membership

Since becoming a doula in 1996, I have been a birth doula, doula mentor, and a childbirth educator who has supported more than 700 births.  Since becoming a doula, I have served on the DASC Board of Directors in every position at some point during my decades on the board and I love serving my doula community.  I have two wonderful grown children and am the grandmother of three amazing grandchildren.

Before becoming a doula, I trained dogs for people with disabilities other than blindness for 18 years, I ran a word processing department, I was a bookkeeper, a peer counselor for Vietnam Veterans, and an Air Traffic Controller in the Navy.  I feel as if I learned something from every job I’ve ever had that has helped me in my doula career.

B*E*S*T Doula Service

 

 

 

 

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AJ Jonesco

Director of Hospitality

As DASC’s Hospitality Director I look forward to welcoming even more doulas and birth professionals to DASC, as well as working with this dedicated and enthusiastic board to enhance our membership benefits (including more trainings, resources , discounts, and increased opportunities for connection and mentorship).
Like many doulas, I was called to this profession—and thrilled it found me! I work primarily as a Postpartum Travel Doula (DONA Certified) and teach as a New Parent Educator (CAPPA trained). My client focus is antenatal planning and preparation, as well as postpartum support during the first six weeks. I love supporting new families during life‘s transitions with my professional mantra: “Give them roots to grow —and wings to fly.”  In the past,  I have served as a panel speaker at Los Angeles Baby Shows and state-wide nanny training organizations.  Additionally, I am a Newborn Care Specialist and former communications executive, with professional sports/event management experience and professional organizing skillsets, as well as a degree in health promotion & wellness. 
Born in Ohio, the oldest of four, I have been passionate about caring for babies and supporting new families for as long as I can remember! I’ve lived in the west Los Angeles area since graduating college on the East coast.  After raising an almost adult daughter and a guide dog puppy, I feel fortunate  EVERY day that my empty nest is surrounded by puppies and babies!
Maria P
Maria Pasquarelli

Member at Large 

The majority of my adult life/career has been spent working with children. I started babysitting at age 13 and continued through high school and college where I studied acting, theater and film. While pursuing a professional acting career, I augmented my income by tutoring, teaching Theatre Arts Enrichment, mentoring children, and creating plays with incarcerated youth.

After the birth of my first child, in 2016, I developed a profound interest in breastfeeding and human lactation and began to study to become an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC). Another personal revelation arrived in 2018 with the birth of my second child when all of our friends, who had been so supportive the first time around, pretty much assumed we didn’t need help the second time around.

I realized how much help families really need when a new baby is brought home which sparked a period of self education and practical experimentation, ultimately leading me to take formal training to become a postpartum doula. Since late 2019, I have been serving families in the Los Angeles area - providing support, education and encouragement as their parenting journeys unfold.

https://linktr.ee/mariapdoula

Dana Morgan
Dana Morgan

Member at Large 

After a lifetime of baby care, in January of 2015 I became a full spectrum Doula with DTI. My deep passion for all things birth, postpartum support and menstrual education led me to many families seeking support. I have been so lucky to witness and hold space for people as they become parents for the first, second or even third time.  I have trained in placenta encapsulation and taken continued education courses in subjects like lactation. I have a deep passion for learning and staying up to date with birth related research!

As time went on I began to want to expand my ability to support so I became a child brith educator, again through DTI to be able to give a fuller range of knowledge. I hope to continue to grow as a brith worker and educator, and never stop learning! I am so excited to be a part of DASC’s board, learning and expanding myself! I look forward to supporting the new doulas in SoCal the way I was supported early in my career! This work isn’t just a job for us, it’s a deep passion and life calling. I am so grateful to have found this work and this community!
Noemi
Noemi martinez-bary

Member at Large

PD, CLC (she/her)

Hola! I'm a Visual Artist turned Birth Worker, serving families as a Postpartum Doula and Lactation Counselor. Unbeknown to me I started my training when I became a mom in 2006 & 2011. Two very different birthing experiences, one full term and one preterm birth, that took me through a path of incredible joy, as well as trauma. I expanded my training through my own journey of physical, PMAD and PTSD recovery.

In 2015, when reassessing my career and birth experiences, I looked back as far as high school, college and the 25+ years as a professional artist, and realized that there were recurring themes: conception, pregnancy, birth, and babies in most of my artwork. It became clear that I belong in this Birth Work World. I trained as a Postpartum Doula with DONA International.

My years of personal experience & training fed my desire to delve deeper into the  psychological and physical care during pregnancy, birth, postpartum and lactation period. In short, my passion about the perinatal period is palpable in almost everything I do. I strongly believe in a culture where birth is a vulnerable creative force, just, inclusive, and fueled by courage. I'm honored to be part of this DASC community, an amazing organization in support of families and birth workers of Southern California. I was born and raised in Puerto Rico, and live in LA with my husband, son, daughter, dog and cat. 

Art of a Doula

Volunteer for DASC!

If you’re interested in volunteering for DASC, please contact us!

newborn infant in holding adult finger