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Board of Directors

Tanya Smith-Johnson, MS, CPM



Education: Bachelor’s of Science in Biology(2002) and Masters of Science in Medical Science (2004) from Hampton University.

Professional Activities: Tanya Smith-Johnson is a mother of six, homeschooler, Naval Hospital Corps veteran, advocate for full spectrum reproductive health care and justice, birth equity and the improvement of health outcomes especially for Black, Native and Indigenous people. Tanya is a Certified Professional Midwife and the Policy Director and Community Based Doula Program Director at Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies Coalition of Hawaii.

Tanya has extensive experience in bringing the consumer voice to full spectrum reproductive health advocacy and policy. As the former president of California Families for Access to Midwives, she worked with California stakeholders and legislators to help the passage of key legislation to increase access to licensed midwives. Tanya served on the board of directors of the Midwives Alliance of Hawaii as the Vice President and Oahu representative. She was on the Board of Directors of the Foundation for the Advancement of Midwifery where she works to provide education to the public and policy makers regarding midwifery care as a quality health option for birthing people in North America and to increase access to quality maternity care. Tanya is a strategist and Director of Outreach, Advocacy and Education for The Big Push for Midwives, where she works on a national level to help states work on advocacy, policy and legislative change to incorporate and integrate midwives on a national level. Tanya is one of the co-founders and Executive Director of Birth Future Foundation, an organization decolonizing philanthropy , centering racial justice and equity in midwifery. Tanya is a member of the Hawaii Women’s Coalition and the Hawaii Commission on the Status of Women’s Feminist Covid-19 Response Team and co-authored the nation’s first Feminist Economic Recovery Plan in response to Covid-19. Tanya is an appointee on the Birth Place Lab’s Global Perinatal Task Force. Tanya is the newly appointed President of the National College of Midwifery, a direct entry midwifery school for midwives who practice traditional midwifery and out of hospital birth.

Karen Ehrlich, CPM, LM, MA

Vice President 

Felton , CA
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Education: Master of Arts, Health Arts and Sciences, Goddard College, Plainfield, Vermont — 2003. Independent Study in Childbirth and Midwifery beginning in 1973. Apprenticeship in Midwifery, 1975 — 1976. Bachelor of Science, Ithaca College, Ithaca, New York — 1968.

Professional Activities: Karen Ehrlich, MA, CPM, LM has been a childbirth educator, health educator, and midwife since 1975. She currently sits on the Board of Directors of MEAC and serves as chair of the Continuing Education Committee, having been a Continuing Education Unit reviewer since 2007. Additionally, she has worked as a midwifery educator at Sage Femme Midwifery School and the Institute of Feminine Arts, and has been a module preceptor for National College of Midwifery. She has been an active member of California Association of Midwives, and has been a supporting member of Midwives Alliance of North America, National Association of Certified Professional Midwives, Citizens for Midwifery, Coalition for Improving Maternity Services, Association for Pre and Perinatal Psychology and Health, International Childbirth Education Association, and Citizens for Health.

Sarah McBride, CPM


Treasure Valley, ID

Education: 2021 Diploma of Midwifery, Mercy in Action College of Midwifery; 2012 Birth Arts International Trained Doula

Professional Activities: Sarah McBride is a staff midwife at Sage Midwifery, a busy home birth practice that serves the Treasure Valley, Idaho. Sarah is passionate about midwifery, mental health, positive outcomes, and bringing humanity and care back into healthcare. She hopes to leave a legacy of improving student-preceptor relationships.  Sarah’s introduction to birth work began when she became a mother in 2009. After hearing nightmare birth stories from her friends, she discovered doula work and then midwifery. She was a doula trainer for Mercy In Action from 2015-2017. She is a Mercy In Action College of Midwifery graduate and licensed in the state of Idaho. Prior to serving on the MEAC board, Sarah has served in other board positions as a regional representative for the Idaho Midwifery Council, and event coordinator/treasurer for Cradle, an education and advocacy-focused community group, in Lewisburg, PA. She has also volunteered as a peer breastfeeding leader for Breastfeeding USA.  She is the youngest of 7 children and grew up around the globe as a military brat. Her parents inspired a love of humor, literature, education, travel, and service. In her spare time, Sarah loves being with her husband of 16 years and their three children. Her hobbies include nature therapy, reading, writing, and lifelong learning.

Kristen Benoit, MA, BSM, CPM, LM


New York


Professional Activities:

Scottie Hale Buehler, CPM, PhD
Austin, TX
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Education: PhD in the history of science and medicine from UCLA; MA (2015) in the history of science and medicine from UCLA; CPM (2010); studied midwifery at the Association for Texas Midwives Training Program; BA (2006) in Sociology and Women and Gender Studies.

Professional Activities: Scottie Buehler is a midwife turned historian of medicine. Her book monograph explores the pedagogical practices and objects of midwifery training programs in the eighteenth-century French Atlantic. After earning her BA in Sociology and Women and Gender Studies from the University of Texas at Austin, she became licensed as a Certified Professional Midwife in 2010 and founded and operated a homebirth midwifery practice in Austin, Texas. She continues to assist at births and is on the board of directors of a non-profit, social justice-oriented birth center.

Aimee Eden, PhD, MPH
Public Member
Lexington , KY
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Education: Dr. Eden earned her Doctorate in Philosophy in Applied Medical Anthropology and a Master of Public Health in Community and Family Health from the University of South Florida in 2013. She also holds a Master’s degree in International Affairs (1996) and Bachelors of Arts in Anthropology and in English (1993) from Ohio University.

Professional Activities: Dr. Eden is a medical anthropologist who leads the qualitative research efforts at the American Board of Family Medicine (ABFM). Since joining ABFM in 2013, she has designed and implemented qualitative and mixed methods projects related to family medicine scope, comprehensiveness, accreditation, training, physician Maintenance of Certification experience, and professionalism. Her research has focused on issues of maternal and child health, maternity care, breastfeeding, the health care workforce, and education. Dr. Eden currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Monetary Investment for Lactation Consultant Certification (MILCC) and on the editorial review board of the Journal of Human Lactation. She previously served as a member of the board of the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBLCE) from 2010-2016. She has published book chapters and articles in peer-reviewed journals such as the Journal of Human Lactation, Journal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions, Family Medicine, and the Anthropology of Work. She is a returned Peace Corps volunteer (public health, Kazakhstan 2000-2002).

Nasima Pfaffl


Professional Activities: