ICAN President/Advocacy Director
Brianna is a mother, wife, and volunteer at home Mom. She is the leader and founder of the Huntsville chapter of the International Cesarean Awareness Network commonly known as ICAN whose mission is to improve maternal-child health by reducing preventable cesareans through education, support cesarean recovery, and advocate for vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC). An important message Brianna shares is reminding cesarean mothers that they are scarred not broken and facilitating a safe place/ support group for mothers to share their personal experiences. Brianna has contributed to the North Alabama birth community by being the forerunner and developer with her ICAN leadership team, of a pilot program, the “Doula Grant for Expectant Mothers”, this grant , awarded once a quarter, helps assist with a portion of the cost of a doula for mothers in need. She is passionate about supporting mothers and advocating for a system that provides integrated, evidence-based, respectful care options in all settings with particular concern for fully informed consent, and respect for patient’s rights surrounding both cesarean sections and Trial of Labor After Cesarean.
ICAN Vice President
Justen has been involved with ICAN since 2013, and has served as a Chapter Leader in Huntsville, Alabama since 2015, and on the ICAN Board of Directors since 2017. She has had two cesareans, and one VBA2C. Her main focus in ICAN has been advocacy work, including obtaining the VBA2C clarification from ACOG, as well as attending and speaking at hospital board meetings and conferences, writing advocacy letters to providers and facilities, speaking out against unethical practices, and working to increase VBAC and Family Centered Cesarean access. She is passionate about collaborating with birth professionals in the path to improving maternal-child health.
Janelle is a wife, mother of two, and stay at home mom from Owasso, Oklahoma. She found ICAN during the summer of 2016 while searching for a doctor after becoming pregnant with her second child. After a traumatic first birth with her first that resulted in an emergency cesarean she knew from the beginning she wanted the opportunity to try and have a vbac. The support she received from ICAN during pregnancy and recovery was profound and essential to her healing process. She is passionate about advocating for moms who want to have a choice about their birthing experience. She recently graduated during the summer with a masters of science in accounting from Texas a&m university—commerce. Outside of family and ICAN she enjoys gardening and traveling.
Samantha found ICAN shortly after the birth of her first daughter by cesarean. The mission of ICAN spoke to her heart and she knew immediately this was something she wanted to be a part of. The support she found through ICAN was invaluable to her while she planned for her VBAC. Samantha is also a Chapter Leader for ICAN of Omaha. She has a strong passion for helping women achieve informed and empowered birth experiences through education and support. Samantha is currently completing her Master’s of Public Health degree and plans to use her new degree to continue promoting woman-centered, evidence-based maternity and childbirth care. Outside of her childbirth advocacy work, Samantha enjoys traveling and photography.
ICAN Board Member at Large/Chapter Director
Brittany became involved in cesarean support and recovery in 2016 shortly after the birth of her first son. ICAN’s mission of education, advocacy, and support drove her to become a leader of the Triad chapter of ICAN. As a maternal near miss survivor she is passionate about improving birth outcomes, maternal mental health, and traumatic birth support and healing. Brittany loves helping families navigate their options surrounding VBAC but also holds a special place in her heart for families planning cesareans and exploring gentle and family centered cesarean choices. She believes in the power of education and information and hopes that every family has the opportunity to experience a safe, fulfilling, empowering birth – no matter the mode of delivery. Outside of ICAN Brittany serves her community as a birth and bereavement doula. She welcomed her second son in 2018 via CBAC. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, enjoying food, music, and reading.
ICAN Board Member at Large/Assistant Chapter Director
Tatiana found ICAN in 2018 after her first birth, a homebirth cesarean. She was traumatized and detached as a result of her birth, and was able to find space and healing through her local ICAN chapter meetings. After her TOLAC and birth of her second son via CBAC, Tatiana was inspired to get more involved with ICAN’s mission of education, advocacy, and support. She holds a special place in her heart for other CBAC moms and is passionate about supporting families through cesarean recovery. She believes all families should feel safe, empowered and informed surrounding their birth choices. Outside of ICAN, Tatiana serves her community as a lactation professional. She enjoys cooking, traveling, and spending time outdoors.
ICAN Board Member at Large/Advocacy Director
Briana Smith came to ICAN through birth work. She has advanced trainings in Systemic Racism & Implicit Bias in Perinatal Health, and Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Advocacy. She is also a Postpartum Support International HelpLine volunteer.
Briana received her BS in Public Health from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where her passion for maternal and reproductive health sparked. Briana chose to volunteer for ICAN because she wholeheartedly believes in ICAN’s mission. Through her own birth practice, she works diligently to reduce preventable cesarean sections and traumatic births, while encouraging informed decision-making and evidence-based care.
Briana currently lives in Eastern Wake County (though she’ll always be a northerner at heart!) She absolutely loves the beach (her dream is to own a boat one day), but also loves snuggling up in a blanket with hot chocolate in a log cabin in the winter time (ah, there’s her New Englander side!)
ICAN Treasurer Emeritus
Kelly learned about ICAN in 2016 while researching options after her traumatic first birth experience. She began attending meetings after her second birth, a TOLAC turned emergency repeat Cesarean, in search of emotional support and a space to share her story. The support she found there inspired her to become a chapter co-leader for ICAN of Tampa Bay in 2018. She has a passion for educating families about their birth options and supporting them in whatever decision is best for them. She strives to provide emotional support for all parents, and especially other CBAC moms. Outside of ICAN, Kelly works as a financial analyst. She is excited to combine her love of numbers with her desire to improve maternal-child health.