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Meet our Presenters

Amal Ali, BSN, RN

Amal Ali is a Patient Care Supervisor at The Mother Baby Center at Abbott Northwestern Hospital, part of Allina Health, in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Amal Ali has worked in Women’s Healthcare for over 10 years in both domestic and abroad. She is dedicated and passionate about reducing racial disparities in maternal health, by advocating and taking intentional actions to recognize inequalities that exist.  Born in Saudi Arabia, moved to Somalia only to flee shortly after as a refugee status to Kenya, then immigrated and raised in the United States of America. Ms. Ali upbringing and lived experience, allow her to see each patient through a wider lens. Amal currently co-chair of Birth Equity Program at the Mother Baby Center and is also part of other DE&I initiatives at Abbott Northwestern Hospital to actively improve workforce diversity and community engagement.

Dr. Jennifer Almanza, DNP, APRN, CNM

Dr. Jennifer Almanza (Xicana, she/her/hers) has been involved in maternal child health for over 25 years. Her career started as a culturally-centered doula and has transformed through work as a nurse in Labor and Delivery, NICU, and high-risk case management. In 2015, Jennifer was awarded a Bush Leadership Fellowship and earned a Doctorate of Nursing Practice, specializing in midwifery care. Since that time, she has worked in health equity research, quality improvement, birth justice policy, and as a midwife. Jennifer serves on several state initiatives to improve health equity and birth outcomes and is appointed as the current co-chair of the Minnesota Maternal Morbidity and Mortality Committee. Jennifer’s life work is to build respectful, equitable, high-quality reproductive health care by centering on evidence-based practice, cultural humility, community centered solutions, and reproductive justice. She currently serves Regions and Methodist Family Birth Centers in the role of a clinical nurse specialist, moving research and evidence-based medicine into clinical practice.

Ursula Clarin, RN, BSN, PHN  

Ursula Clarin is a Labor and Delivery Nurse that has worked at the Allina Health Mother Baby Center in Minneapolis Minnesota since 2015. Ursula is an enrolled member of the Saginaw Ojibwe tribe of Michigan, she is also Kiowa and Cheyenne River Sioux. Growing up in Minnesota she became aware of the differences in health care outside of the reservation herself and her family received and wanted to make a difference. She achieved her Bachelor of Science in Nursing in 2014 from St. Catherine University and obtained a position on the Labor and Delivery. In 2020, after the social unrest in Minneapolis, she and others on the unit, felt the call of BIPOC to lead a grassroots group named “The Birth Equity Group” on her unit. Her current passion is working on eliminating bias in obstetric and newborn health, promote equity in the BIPOC maternal and newborn health, educating/providing trauma informed care, and promoting/increasing breast-feeding rates in the Indigenous and Black communities.

Susan Drummond, MSN RN C-EFM
Susan Drummond received her BSN and MSN from Vanderbilt University School of Nursing and is a Senior Associate in Obstetrics in the Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.  At Vanderbilt, she is the coordinator of the Perinatal Regionalization program and also works in Labor and Delivery where she has >30 years’ experience. She is an AWHONN instructor in Intermediate and Advanced Electronic Fetal Monitoring and an Instructor Trainer, and received the AWHONN Award of Excellence in Education in 2020. She speaks nationally and is published in the areas of electronic fetal monitoring and high-risk obstetrics.

Lisa Gill, MD

Lisa Gill is a maternal fetal medicine physician at University of Minnesota. She has board certification in Obstetrics and Gynecology, Maternal Fetal Medicine, and Obesity Medicine. Clinical interests include pregnancy affected by obesity and prenatal diagnosis.

Jen McLellan, CBE

Jen McLellan is a published author, founder of Plus Size Birth, and host of the Plus Mommy Podcast. She helps people navigate the world of plus size pregnancy, shares tips for embracing your body, and laughs her way through the adventures of parenthood. With over 7 million page views, Plus Size Birth is the premier plus size pregnancy resource trusted by parents and professionals. The Plus Mommy Podcast has over 225,000 downloads and was named one of the best pregnancy podcasts of 2022 by The Bump.

Jen's work has appeared in major publications, including The New York Times, Glamour, and Huffington Post. As a public speaker, Jen has been featured at numerous events, including presenting at the National Institutes of Health. Jen is also a certified childbirth educator, wife, and mother to a charismatic twelve-year-old.

Queer Birth Project

Queer Birth Project is a collection of birth and early parenting professionals with a mission to provide high quality, accessible, affordable education, and support for queer folks in fertility, pregnancy, birth, and early parenting. Members Becca Andreassen, CPM LTM (they/she); Janine Stiles, CPM LM (she/her); Sarah Talbert, CPM LM (she/her); and Ellyn Wyman-Grothem, Doula (she/her) will present.

Jean Salera-Vieira, DNP, APRN-CNS, RNC

Dr. Salera-Vieira, is a Nurse Consultant with AWHONN, and the ACNO of Professional Development at Women and Infants Hospital of Rhode Island. She is a Perinatal Clinical Nurse Specialist who is an author and speaker focusing on safety issues in the perinatal setting. She holds Bachelor’s degrees in Social Work (from the University of New Hampshire) and in Nursing (from Rhode Island College), a Master of Science in nursing from the University of Rhode Island, as well as a post-Masters Certificate as a Perinatal Nurse Specialist from the University of Washington, Seattle. In addition, she received her Doctor of Nursing Practice from Rhode Island College. Dr. Salera-Vieira’s background includes both clinical and perinatal leadership roles in high-risk and community hospitals, and adjunct faculty for undergraduate and graduate students. She is an AWHONN instructor in Intermediate and Advanced Electronic Fetal Monitoring, and holds certifications from NCC in Inpatient Obstetrics, Fetal Monitoring, and Obstetric and Neonatal Quality and Safety.

Corenia Smith, Doula, LPN, Educator

Corenia Smith is a Chicago-born, Minnesota-raised, nurse, organizer, and strategist committed to actualizing reproductive justice and furthering our collective liberation. In her roles as Doula, LPN, and Educator, she provides practical wellbeing care for individuals while advancing progressive values that support safe and expansive sexual and reproductive health. Her care extends beyond the clinic by mobilizing people-centered movements to vote for change and inform the laws that govern us. Corenia has been recognized for leading large-scale campaigns and building partnerships with coalitions that engage our communities to increase our collective health and wellbeing. She is the current Birth Justice Collaborative project manager, was a co-founder of UnrestrictMN, 2-year board chair for Our Justice, and has held clinical and community positions at SPIRAL Collective, Family Tree Clinic, and Reclaim the Block. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Reproductive Justice and Nonprofit leadership and is currently pursuing a Masters of Advocacy and Political Leadership. When she is not advocating or campaigning you can find her playing games at home with her partner and dog.

Gail Tully, CPM

Gail Tully is the midwife who conceived and developed Spinning Babies®. Spinning Babies® went online in 2001. Over 35 years with birth, including 20 years as a homebirth midwife, Gail now writes and teaches and supports change in the birth paradigm.

Back in the day, Gail was kept busy organizing doula program development in hospitals and community non-profits in Minneapolis/St. Paul while training doulas with DONA International approval status. Spinning Babies®, Belly Mapping®, Belly Mapping MethodTM, Resolving Shoulder Dystocia, and now Breech Basics are the unique offerings from Gail Tully. Gail and her husband live in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA.