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Nova Midwifery is a team of two Licensed Midwives, Mason Cornelius and Mollie Sullivan, and our apprentice, Laurel Coates. Licensed Midwives are professional midwives who have completed a requisite course of clinical and didactic study and passed the examination required by the Medical Board of California, thereby earning the license to practice midwifery in this state. Mason and Mollie also are certified by the North American Registry of Midwives as Certified Professional Midwives. Licensed Midwives offer complete prenatal, birth, and postpartum care for healthy mothers and babies, and are experts in physiological birth and in promoting optimal health throughout the childbearing year. We at Nova Midwifery implement the Midwives Model of Care, which places women and families at the center of care, emphasizes the philosophy that pregnancy and birth are normal life processes, includes monitoring of the mother and baby's well-being and transfer of care to obstetric practice when necessary, while reserving interventions only for infrequent times that they are truly warranted. We include apprentices in our practice because we believe strongly in the importance of "raising" new midwives for our community, and because our apprentices benefit us and our clients. Their involvement is dependent completely on their abilities and on our clients' comfort level. The three of us value each other deeply and work in tandem beautifully. We have all chosen this work because we wish to provide women with care that is safe, respectful, and reverent, and help families grow by their own strength and desires.
Mason Cornelius, LM, CPM
Mason has been a Licensed Midwife since 2001 and has helped more than 400 babies into the world. Her formal midwifery training was obtained in a freestanding birth center over the course of two and a half years with an Obstetrician and a Certified Nurse Midwife culminating in her passing the California Challenge Exam through Seattle Midwifery School. She then attended homebirths with various other community midwives and spent 18 months in the volunteer doula program at Contra Costa Regional Medical Center in Martinez until establishing Nova Midwifery Services in 2001. She holds a BS in Health Science from CSU Hayward with an emphasis on Women's Health. In 2004, Mason served an internship with Shoshana Bennett, past president of PostPartum Support International, in order to better help women coping with postpartum depression and anxiety. When she isn't helping mamas and families, she is raising her wonderful children, a teenage son and preteen daughter.
Mollie Sullivan, LM, CPM
Mollie has been a Licensed Midwife and Certified Professional Midwife since 2008, and has attended over 200 births. Nova Midwifery welcomed her as a partner shortly after she became licensed. Mollie worked as a doula for several years before beginning her midwifery training. She completed Seattle Midwifery School's three-year MEAC accredited program, excelling both in her academic and clinical training. Over those three years, she trained with nine different midwives in homes, birth centers, and hospitals. Her training included working at a hospital in rural Nepal, providing pregnancy, birth, and well-woman care. Mollie holds a degree from UC Berkeley in Integrative Biology with an emphasis in Human Biology. Mollie is a passionate, loving, and knowledgeable midwife who thoroughly enjoys serving women and families. She is also working to improve maternity services and midwifery care in California by serving as a regional representative in the California Association of Midwives. In her free time, Mollie enjoys being with her family and friends, hiking with her two dogs, knitting, and enjoying the splendors of nature.
Laurel Coates, apprentice midwife
Laurel began her apprenticeship with Nova Midwifery in 2010, having enrolled in the National Midwifery Institute in 2003. She quickly integrated into our practice and we enjoy watching her grow in her apprenticeship. She has ten years of experience as a birth doula, and also was a lactation counselor for the Nursing Mothers' Counsel of Santa Clara for a year. Since 1999, Laurel has been moderator for the Berkeley Parents Network, a parent-to-parent email list for the sharing of information and resources. More recently, she has become a board member at BirthWays in Berkeley. Laurel has a BA from UC Berkeley in early childhood education and child development, which ushered in her enthusiasm of children, families, and midwifery. Laurel is the mother of two children -- her first baby was born in 1998 and her second was born in 2000 -- and both were attended by doulas and midwives. She lives in Berkeley with her husband, her tween-aged children, her mother, and a menagerie of animals.
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