Jessica Stieger, MPH, MSW, IBCLC, CD(DONA)
Jessica is a recent graduate of UNC Chapel Hill with a Master’s in Social Work and a Master’s in Public Health, focused in maternal and infant health. She also recently completed education to become an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. A birth doula since 2013, Jessica is passionate about perinatal health and how communities can partner with local and government organizations to improve maternal and infant health outcomes. Prior to graduate school, Jessica worked in the Research Department at Whitman-Walker Health, a non-profit FQHC that provides comprehensive healthcare to D.C.’s LGBTQ+ population.
As a public health social worker, advocacy is at the core of my personal and professional values. Jessica believes strongly in the DONA International vision of “a doula for every person who wants one.” To this end, she is proud of the work she’s done as a volunteer doula in the UNC Birth Partners program. Having seen in this program how volunteer doulas can provide beneficial support to families who may not be able to afford private doula services or did not previously know about doula support, she would like to see doula services accessible to communities who stand to benefit most from the advocacy and respect that are central to DONA International’s Code of Ethics. Additionally, initiatives focused on actively training and supporting Women of Color to become doulas is one of Jessica’s goals as Advocacy Director.
Jessica hopes to build collaborative interdisciplinary partnerships that focus on innovative steps toward DONA’s advocacy goals. Addressing health disparities and inequities was central to Jessica’s graduate education, and she plans to continue to focus DONA’s advocacy work toward these challenges.