Certified Professional Midwife, Owner, Clinical Director
I began my path to midwifery at the age of 16 after attending the birth of my nephew. When I was supposed to be doing my algebra homework I was reading pregnancy-related books! For Christmas 2000 my dear friend Melaine Copeland gave me a copy of Spiritual Midwifery by Ina May Gaskin. I was immediately hooked and knew that midwifery outside of the hospital was where I belonged.
Soon after, I began my midwifery studies while also completing my bachelor’s degree at Eastern Mennonite University, getting married, and giving birth to my own two children! Those were busy years and so very precious. In 2014 I gave birth to my third child in the Willow Suite tub.
My midwifery training has been a reflection of my commitment to caring service: I have worked with 9 different Virginia midwives, volunteered with Medical Ministry International (Dominican Republic), African Birth Collective (Senegal), interned at Casa de Nacimiento (El Paso, TX), and birth assisted at Heartland Health Clinic (Dayton, VA). I received my Certified Professional Midwife certificate and my Virginia License in 2010. On Labor Day of the same year I opened Brookhaven Natural Birth Center. I have been a certified preceptor from the beginning of my career and have trained more than 13 student midwives that have gone on to become licensed providers. I have attended over 700 births and thousands of prenatal and postpartum visits.
I currently serve as the President of the Virginia Birth Center Alliance, Vice President of the American Association of Birth Centers, as well as sit on the DEI committee, and am the liaison to the Standards and Education committees at AABC. I am also back at Eastern Mennonite University working on a Masters Certificate in the Trauma and Resilience in Health Care program.
Certified Professional Midwife, Licensed Midwife
My journey with midwifery has been lifelong. Born at home myself, I am the daughter of a midwife and homebirth mother of five. I live with my family on a homestead in Pendleton County, West Virginia near the Virginia border. I homeschool my children and enjoy gardening, preparing and preserving natural foods, making body care products and textile arts, and using herbal teas and medicines.
I built a foundation of commitment to out-of-hospital birth as a young woman through my mother’s practice: reading books from her library, joyfully witnessing and participating in all aspects of midwifery care. My first two babies’ gentle and empowering births taught me more than words can say and gave me an even stronger desire to help women experience natural birth.
My training consisted of a combination of formal education, self-directed study and apprenticeship. I graduated from Sacred Mountain Midwifery School in 2009, participated in a wide variety of training workshops and study groups and had my third child. During 2014-2016, I underwent an intensive and fulfilled a two year apprenticeship here at Brookhaven Birth Center, attending home and birth center births, under the tutelage of my friend and mentor Misty Ward, among other midwives.
I am fortunate to have worked and learned with 11 different midwives, attending over 100 births and hundreds of prenatal and postpartum visits during my training. Traditionally, midwifery has been passed down as an art. To me, apprenticeship is a hallmark of midwifery and I am very grateful to my preceptors as well as the child-bearing women whom by sharing their experiences with me, enabled me to learn so much.
After obtaining my CPM certification and Virginia License in 2016, I worked as a midwife at Heartland Health Clinic until the birth of the first of two more children. In the years since, I have worked with midwives in my area and enjoyed having a low volume private practice. These experiences have helped solidify and expand my midwifery skills. I am so excited to be back at Brookhaven as another step in my journey with midwifery, serving the birthing community.
I maintain certification in Neonatal Resuscitation and CPR, participate in continuing education and peer review and am a member of my state professional organizations: Virginia Midwives’ Alliance (VMA) and Midwives’ Alliance of West Virginia (MAWV) in which I serve as treasurer. I follow the Midwives’ Model of Care, which is based on the fact that pregnancy and birth are normal life processes. I believe in Evidence-Based Care and Informed Consent. I am honored to support and encourage women and their families in their own ways of moving through pregnancy, labor and birth, nurturing an open and trusting relationship with the goal and benefit being a safe and beautiful birth experience.
Office Administrator and Student Midwife
My name is Patience Miller and I moved from south Mississippi in April of 2023 to serve on the administrative team at Brookhaven Natural Birth Center. I was born at home under the care of a midwife and grew up with a heart to serve women. What attracted me to Brookhaven is
the value of making informed choices and the importance of focusing on individual care in health care.
I studied nursing in college, and I decided the doctrines of standard medicine were not something I wanted to advocate. My mission is to be of service to families, however I can and support the emotions involved with welcoming new life into the world.
I hope to serve women as I encourage them to a lifestyle which they consider the highest in all aspects of physical, mental, and spiritual health, not only in childbirth, but in all stages of life. I have a particular interest in the areas of postnatal and prenatal mental health and yoga that I hope to someday integrate in my work.
On the weekends I enjoy getting involved in outdoor activities such as hiking, kayaking, finding new furry friends or visiting farms. I also love exploring small towns and getting a taste of the local ambience at farmers markets and artisan shops. To recharge, I sometimes need to get creative with my paintbrushes creating watercolor art.
My journey into birth work was heavily inspired by the birth of my last baby 15 years ago. After a scary delivery with a premature baby and weeks in the NICU, it was clear to me that I wanted to provide support to other families in their own journey.
I attended 3 years of Nursing school and realized that my views were far from aligned with the Medical model of care and felt compelled to explore alternatives. It didn’t take me long to fall in love with Doula work. I spent my first few years supporting families as a Newborn Care Specialist, Certified Lactation Consultant and Post Partum Doula. 7 years ago I followed my calling to birth work and have been fortunate to support hundreds of families bringing their little ones into the world. A few years back, my mentor (and dear friend) Tiffany gave me a copy of Heart and Hands which became the turning point for my path into Midwifery.
I have supported births in a wide variety; in hospital, at home, and birth centers etc. I have had to bear witness to so many being families abused and mistreated by the medical system that I decided I need to make a change in our community. It is of most importance that each family I work with feels safe, heard, supported, and educated so they can make the best decisions for themselves. I am a huge advocate of family-centered care, and if you already have little ones you’ll likely see me on the floor with them, teaching them about birth.
When I’m not working I love to seek adventure. I enjoy exploring all the beauty the world has to offer and living life to the fullest. I am a mom to five kids ranging 15-21, two Bengal cats, and two parrots that make life so fun.
It is truly an honor to be a part of the Brookhaven team and I am looking forward to meeting each of you!
Student Midwife and Registered Nurse
My name is Brianna Wood, but you can call me Bri! I am currently a Registered Nurse with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Student Midwife here at Brookhaven!
I have been married for a year now to my husband whom I met at Mount Vernon Nazarene University in Ohio, where I graduated this May of 2023. We live with a 3-year-old rowdy dog and a sweet-tempered cat who is just as old as our marriage, to the exact date. I am an avid walker and hiker. I love being outdoors and am passionate about adventure.
When I started my nursing career as a student, I wasn’t sure where I would be headed and could not find a place where I felt called. After my clinical rotation on a Labor and Delivery floor in a hospital I was hooked, and knew God was calling me to be a part of the birthing process with moms, however, I wasn’t sure that I was enjoying the hospital environment.
My sister gave birth here at Brookhaven not too long ago and kept pushing me to join as a student. After a while, I listened to the call (and her frequent encouragement) and found myself here. I love working here, and I love this environment. I’m excited to be learning and I’m thankful to be able to take part in the special moments between mothers and their babies. I am glad to have found a place where mothers can feel empowered and educated in their decisions for the wellbeing of their baby.
Erin Hurst LMT, BCTMB
Licensed Massage Therapist
Erin Hurst is a Licensed Massage Therapist (LMT), in addition to being Board Certified in Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (BCTMB), the highest credential in the Massage Therapy and Bodywork profession. Erin is also a Certified Nurturing the Mother® Pregnancy Massage Therapist. She lives in Keezletown, with her husband and two girls, both of whom were born with the help of the women at Brookhaven.