Our Midwives

We are a group of midwives who gained our education in a variety of ways. Our Collective was formed to provide clients with the full benefit of our diverse backgrounds. All Collective members have either completed the Michener Institute for Applied Health Sciences Pre-Registration Programme, International Midwifery Pre-Registration Program, or the Midwifery Education Program. We are all Registered Midwives, governed by the College of Midwives of Ontario. We can refer you to past clients, other midwives or physicians we have worked with if you require further references. A brief description of each of our background follows:

Zuzana Betkova

I am a general registrant with the Midwives Collective of Toronto. In addition to my degree from the Ryerson Midwifery Education Program, I also have an undergraduate degree in International Development Studies from the University of Toronto. I grew up in the GTA, but have also had the privilege of living in Europe and West Africa.  In addition to being a perpetual student I have also taught violin and English, worked as a pharmacy assistant, development worker, museum receptionist, and assisted with various research projects. I decided to pursue midwifery as I am fascinated by women’s health and the adventure of pregnancy, birth and parenthood. I look forward to meeting and learning from you all.

 

Elizabeth Brandeis

I am originally from the U.S. but have lived in Ontario since 1992.  My journey towards midwifery began with the birth of my daughter in 1994.  I graduated from the Ryerson Midwifery Education Program in 2003 and from my Masters of Community Health from University of Toronto in 2013. I am a part time instructor in the Ryerson Midwifery Education Program and serve on the board of directors of the Association of Ontario Midwives.

 

Hedrey Chu

I graduated from the Midwifery Education Programme at Ryerson University in the spring of 2008. Prior to studying Midwifery, I completed a Bachelor of Science degree with honours in Biology at the University of Toronto in 2004.  During my clinical training, I had the opportunity to work at practices that serve women from downtown Toronto, York region and the greater Toronto area.  I have worked as a lifeguard, swimming instructor, and first aid instructor for many years with the city of Toronto. During my midwifery degree, I have also worked as a research assistant under the guidance and supervision of one of my professors at Ryerson.  I was born in Hong Kong, however I have made Toronto my home since my family and I moved to Canada in 1995. It is wonderful to live in a city that celebrates cultural diversity. I speak English, Cantonese and some Mandarin.

 

Nimerta Dhami

I am excited to be working with MCT after having completed my final year’s clinical placements here. Prior to entering the Midwifery Education Program at Ryerson University, I graduated with a double major Bachelor of Arts in Women’s and Gender Studies and Psychology from the University of British Columbia. In Vancouver I worked in the capacities of women’s centre coordinator, youth worker, harm reduction community support worker, and sexual health educator. During my time in the MEP I have had many amazing opportunities, such as working with midwives in Victoria, BC spending a month at Planned Parenthood in St. John’s, Newfoundland. In addition to midwifery, my passions include social justice organizing, reading, zine making, travelling, baking, creative writing, and chocolate.

 

Carmen Felix

My midwifery experience started when I was enrolled at the Eramushogeschool in Brussels, Belgium.  After graduating in 1999 with a Bachelor in Midwifery, I have worked at various hospitals and clinics in Brussels, Belgium, St.Martin, West Indies, Cayenne, Grand Santi and Guyana.  My experience had ranged from working as a midwife in labour and maternity units to an isolated clinic where I was the only professional taking care of pregnant women and their newborns.  During this period I have gained experience in prenatal care, labour and delivery and postpartum.  In 2006 I completed the International Pre-registration program for foreign trained midwives at Ryerson University, Toronto.  I am currently working full time and speak fluent French, Flemish, and English.

 

Tracy Franklin

I began the Midwifery Education Program at Ryerson in 1997 then graduated and began working in the Spring of 2002. I love being a midwife. Prior to midwifery I spent 5 years at Western in Philosophy & Women’s Studies, worked in palliative care and volunteered as a doula. Since the late 1980’s I’ve worked with various organizations trying to change the world and I’m still plugging away. I played competitive baseball for more than 20 years and now enjoy coaching my kids’ baseball teams at Christie Pitts. I look forward to working with you.

 

Vincia Herbert

I’m very happy to be joining the Midwives Collective of Toronto as a newly registered midwife! Prior to starting my midwifery journey, I completed a B.Sc. in Biology from McGill University and later worked as a community outreach advisor in McGill’s diversity education office. While living and working in Montreal, I was involved in many initiatives that promoted community building, anti-discrimination, equity and inclusion. I was immediately drawn to the client-centered approach to midwifery care, and it has been a pleasure and privilege to work in a field that I feel truly connected to. Outside of work I enjoy exploring the many food options Toronto has to offer, listening to music with soul, and sharing moments of unrestrained laughter with lovely people. I look forward to meeting you!

 

Katrina Kilroy

I have a Bachelor’s degree in International Development from Trent University in Peterborough. My interest in midwifery grew out of my involvement in social justice and feminist activism in the 1980s. I began self study in midwifery in 1987 and completed my apprenticeship in El Paso, Texas in 1991. In May of 1991 I joined a midwifery practice in Simcoe-Grey counties where I continued my learning. I then practiced for one year in Peterborough after midwifery became legally recognized in Ontario in 1994. In March 1995 I began working with the Midwives Collective of Toronto. I have been involved in midwifery organizations provincially, nationally and internationally, and have worked in collaboration with midwifery leadership in Tanzania. I am an obsessive quilter.

 

Leah Klein

I am very excited to be working as a registered midwife with the Midwives Collective of Toronto.  I graduated from the Ryerson Midwifery Education Program in 2012 with a Bachelor of Health Science.  I also have a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a Bachelor of Commerce in Operational Management from the University of Calgary.  Prior to becoming a midwife, I worked for many years as a crime analyst for two different police forces.  I am originally from Alberta but have lived in Toronto since 2006.  I was drawn to midwifery because I strongly believe in the philosophy of care.  I experienced the joy of midwifery care first-hand with the birth of my own son in 2009.

 

Devi Krieger

I was born and raised in Toronto, where I was first exposed to midwifery through my father, a family doctor who attended home births prior to legislation. I completed a degree in social-cultural anthropology from the University of Toronto and worked as a support care provider and advocate for adults with disabilities. During the course of my midwifery training, I had the opportunity to work at a variety of clinics in Guelph, Scarborough, and Toronto. I have had the privilege of working with clients and their families from divergent communities and have strong personal commitment to the principles of anti-oppression, social justice, feminism, and the model of midwifery care in Ontario.  Since graduating from the Midwifery Education Program at Ryerson University in the spring of 2009, I have been working at the Midwives Collective.

 

MacKenzie Macht-starting summer 2017, pending Ministry of Health funding

I graduated from the Midwifery Education Program at McMaster University in the spring of 2017. Before graduating I completed my year-long senior placement at the Midwives Collective of Toronto and I am so happy to return to this community as a newly registered midwife. I have a Master’s degree in English literature ­ ­– I love to read – and I worked as a yoga teacher and farm hand before becoming midwife. My interest in midwifery is rooted in my experiences with feminism and health care growing up in rural southern Ontario. I look forward to working with you.

 

Sarah Martineau-starting summer 2017, pending Ministry of Health funding

I’m very excited to be joining the Midwives Collective of Toronto as a newly registered midwife. I have grown up in Toronto but my heritage includes both Trinidadian and First Nations descent and I’m honoured to be able to provide care to the diverse communities of Toronto. Prior to studying midwifery, I achieved an undergraduate degree from the University of Toronto in Physical Health and Education and a Paramedic Diploma from Centennial College. After working for over a decade as a paramedic in downtown Toronto, I felt a strong desire to find a profession where I could establish closer connections to families as well as provide more individualized care to meet differing needs. As a recipient of excellent midwifery care for my own two children, I knew that midwifery would be a perfect fit for me and my family. Outside of midwifery, I enjoy knitting, crafting, and creating delicious things in the kitchen.

 

Robynn Roberts

I earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from McGill University in 1996 which was my first step toward my intended career in women’s health care.  My interests took me out west to Vancouver where I worked primarily in the field of health behaviour and promotion research at UBC with an additional administrative role in the Department of Family Practice.  During this time, my interest in midwifery led me to seek learning opportunities in Tennessee as well as to volunteer as labour support for teenage women in both Ottawa and Vancouver.  I became a graduate of the midwifery program at McMaster University in 2005 and shortly thereafter gave birth to my first child.  I joined the Midwives Collective in 2006 and am currently working full time.

 

Noushafarin (Noushin) Shameli

My midwifery experience began when I graduated from university in 1989 in Iran.  I worked with love and enthusiasm as a midwife until 2008, when my family and I immigrated to Canada.  My passion for midwifery led me to register in the International Midwifery Pre- Registration program (IMPP) at Ryerson University in 2011.  IMPP taught me the philosophy of Ontario midwifery care which I practiced through my clinical placement at the Midwives Collective of Toronto (MCT).  I am so excited to work as a midwife with a professional and supportive group of midwives and staff.

 

Edan Thomas

I began a degree in Classical Civilization at the University of Toronto in 1985 and studied there for three years.  In 1986, I became interested in midwifery and began taking workshops with the Midwives Collective of Toronto and the Association of Ontario Midwives.  I volunteered as a labour coach to teen mothers for eight years.  I have also worked in computer programming.  I started the Ryerson Midwifery Programme in 1995 and graduated in 1999.  I have been a member of the Midwives Collective of Toronto since 1999.  I have always been committed to social change and to creating alternative communities.  I continue to be involved with widely diverse groups of people working on various projects in such areas as women’s health, native issues, and disability.  I am currently working half time.

 

Ruby Van Vliet

I am excited to join the team at the Midwives Collective of Toronto for my New Registrant year of practice. After completing my senior level of clinical training here at MCT, I graduated from the Midwifery Education Program at Ryerson University in spring 2016. During my education I also had the opportunity to practice in London, ON and Attawapiskat, ON. Prior to studying midwifery I completed an undergraduate degree in Communication Studies and Women’s Studies from Concordia University in Montreal. Other pursuits included tree planting, travelling, volunteering as a doula and urban agriculture. My interest in midwifery is rooted in a commitment to social justice and access to dignified reproductive healthcare. I am passionate about the opportunities of education and information and how it can support the individual to be at the center of their own choices. I’m originally from Manitoba, and have enjoyed living in Toronto since 2012. I am honored to have the opportunity to work with you, the Midwives and great staff at MCT.

 

Vicki Van Wagner

My midwifery education began in 1978. I learned through apprenticeship, before midwifery was legally recognized, by working with two Toronto midwives and several family doctors.  In 1982 I began my own practice and in 1983 was a founding member of The Midwives Collective of Toronto. I have a PhD from York University. My major areas of academic study have been women’s health policy and education.  Since 1993 I have worked part time as a faculty member at the Ryerson University Midwifery Education Programme. I spend several months each year practicing and teaching in a remote Arctic village. My involvement in teaching, research and in many maternity care policy means that I am regularly off call for classes, conferences and meetings.

 

Nicole Waithe

My practice as a midwife began with the Midwives Collective in February 2007 after completing the Midwifery Education Program (M.E.P) at Ryerson University.  Prior to starting the M.E.P in 2001, I studied anthropology at York University.  In 2000, I volunteered at the Massey Centre for Women as a labour coach working with pregnant teens, after having the experience of being a teen mother in 1993.  I also worked as an office volunteer at the Association of Ontario Midwives from 1995-1996.  Having been born and raised in Toronto, my hope is to continue to practice here in the city.  I am currently working full-time.

 

Grace Zhang

I graduated from Soochow Medical School in China in 2000 with a degree in Clinical Medicine.  I have worked as an OB/GYN in Shanghai Zhongshan Hospital, one of the top hospitals in China from 2000-2003.  My husband and I came to Canada as immigrants in 2003.  I became interested in midwifery and started Midwifery Education Program at McMaster University in 2004.  I completed all of my clinical placements, including my final year of training at the Midwives Collective of Toronto. I speak Mandarin and English.