Geradine Simkins is a midwife, writer, activist, and visionary who passionately provided midwifery care in a variety of settings for over thirty years. She has dedicated her work years to maternal and child health, women’s healthcare in Northern Michigan, and serving marginalized people in community-based programs, such as American Indians and migrant farm workers. While Geradine has been a midwifery leader in her own community and region, she also spent two decades in national midwifery leadership as President of the Board of Directors of the Midwives Alliance of North America (MANA), as MANA’s first Executive Director, as a member of many national maternal and child health coalitions, as an expert consultant for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and as a member of the Governing Council of the International Confederation of Midwives.
Geradine travels the world making connections and forging partnerships. She also travels to have fun and to meet new friends. Geradine is the proud mother of three amazing homeborn, homegrown children who are now adults working to make the world a better place.
Inspiration for Into These Hands, Wisdom from Midwives
On New Year’s Day of 2007 Geradine woke up with the inspiration for this anthology. Someone whispered in her ear that it was time to write this book. She made lists of eligible midwives from across the country whose life stories she would like to collect. There were over one hundred. She sent out invitations to a few dozen people and began the meticulous work of collecting, organizing and editing the narratives written by each midwife/author. The skills she had honed in her consulting business—qualitative research, interviewing, report and grant writing, authorship and oral presentations, curriculum development—all served her well.
Dedication to birthing Into These Hands, Wisdom from Midwives
Geradine then gently but firmly shepherded each author into telling her life story and crafting and re-crafting each memoir to be accessible and interesting to a mainstream readership. She hired a professional editor (Max Regan, www.hollowdeckpress.com) to assist her in the process of refining and editing the anthology. After 4 years of concentrated effort it all came together in an elegant and cohesive package published by Spirituality & Health. In addition to managing the entire project from conception to fruition, Geradine has written several sections for the anthology included the Opening, Introduction, her own memoir, the Afterword, and Resources. Into These Hands, Wisdom from Midwives © is Geradine’s most impressive published work to date.
Currently Geradine is the principal of Birthways Consulting, LLC. She lives in Michigan with her husband Fred Heltenen.
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