60th Anniversary
La Leche League International
Online Conference
From 3 to 7 April 2017



Welcome to the first La Leche League International Online Conference, presented April 3 - 7, 2017.

LLLI is celebrating 60 years of supporting and informing breastfeeding families around the world - building a legacy that will continue far into the future.

Five full days of learning are in store with world-renowned speakers on a wide variety of fascinating topics! A live ten-minute written question and answer discussion with the speaker will follow many sessions. All talks are pre-recorded and will be available on demand through May 8, 2017.


All times are adjusted to your local timezone. Printable Schedule || Times, presenters and sessions are subject to change.

4/3/2017 11:00 AM
11:30 AM


How They Built A Legacy - In Their Own Words

This kick-off session of the conference is the new LLLI 60th Anniversary DVD, produced and directed by Lisa Manning of LLL of New Zealand, featuring LLLI co-Founders Mary Ann Cahill, Mary Ann Kerwin, and Marian Tompson, reminiscing about the early days of LLL and pondering the future of the organization. You will laugh and cry! This beautiful memento of the LLLI 60 years of supporting breastfeeding will be available for purchase after the conference.

4/3/2017 11:30 AM
12:00 PM


What is Biological Nurturing?

Suzanne  Colson, PhD, MSc, BA
Some say it is laid-back breastfeeding… Others say it is natural or physiological breastfeeding. Many think that biological nurturing is the same as skin-to-skin contact although there is a strong argument that eye-to-eye contact is more important than naked contact. But BN can be all of these things and more. Attend this presentation to clarify how mother-baby breastfeeding positions, states and behaviors, the six BN components, interact and interrelate to help mothers and babies enjoy breastfeeding.

4/3/2017 12:00 PM
12:30 PM


Listening to mothers

Naomi  Stadlen
Women didn’t talk to each other [about breastfeeding] in those days,’ wrote Marian Tompson in Passionate Journey. Do breastfeeding mothers still benefit today from discussing breastfeeding issues at La Leche League series meetings? How can a Leader encourage them to talk?

4/3/2017 12:30 PM
1:00 PM


Listening with your heart

Dorothea  Käsermann
How does it feel to be listened to? Listening is feeling the other person. Listening is forgetting about oneself in order to walk alongside the person talking, Listening is when your heart grows ears. Listen…….

4/3/2017 2:00 PM
2:30 PM


Newborn instinctive 9 stages after birth

Kajsa  Brimdyr, PhD, CLC
This session will give a brief overview of the incredible abilities of the newborn during the first hour after birth, and touch on some of the long-term implications of this important time.

4/3/2017 2:30 PM
3:00 PM


Oxytocin - the hormone of connection

Linda  Smith, MPH, LCCE, IBCLC
Oxytocin is truly a magical hormone involved in all aspects of life, love, and especially reproduction. It has been called the hormone of calm, love, and healing. Breastfeeding mothers and their babies are flooded with oxytocin during every nursing session, enhancing their trust in one another, healing their bodies, helping their digestive systems, calming their fears, even strengthening their ability to recognize each other’s faces. Oxytocin helps us fall in love, enjoy lovemaking, bring our babies to birth, and release our wondrous milk to our babies. This session will describe the “many-sided importance” of this remarkable hormone.

4/3/2017 3:00 PM
3:30 PM


The Infant Microbiome

William  Parker, PhD
This session will discuss the microbiota (microbiome) of the infant and all of the factors that can affect the microbiota. The importance of breast milk and how it works to support the microbiota will be discussed. Other factors that affect the microbiota, including hospital procedures in labor and delivery, will also be discussed. Finally, the role of the microbiota in a baby’s health will be summarized.

4/3/2017 3:30 PM
4:00 PM


Making more Milk

Diana  West, BA, IBCLC
This presentation explores the wide range of new and old options for helping mothers increase milk production, with a strong emphasis on the importance of maximizing milk removal.

4/4/2017 11:00 AM
11:30 AM


Support for Non-Dominant Culture Breast and Chestfeeding Parents

Lourdes  Santaballa, BA, MS, IBCLC
Culture and family are a unique component of self-identity and physical/emotional health. How we raise, nurture, and nourish our children through human milk is a question of love and preservation not only of the species but also of the community to which we belong. Focusing on race, ethnicity, class, gender, physical and emotional differences, sexual orientation and other key identities, this presentation will focus on how breast and chestfeeding have special cultural components. It will also discuss the importance of receiving support and safe space when one does not belong to the dominant culture or the service providers do not look like them.

4/4/2017 11:30 AM
12:00 PM


Adventures in Tandem Nursing

Hilary  Flower, PhD
What you need to know about an overlap of breastfeeding and pregnancy

4/4/2017 12:00 PM
12:30 PM


A successful parent-child-relationship – essential for a good childhood

Evelin  Kirkilionis
The biological components of the parent-child-relationship will be described, and which points encourage and which obstruct the intuitive parenting program. A child must have the possibility to develop an emotional relationship, this is a biological predisposition. Parents must initially provide a suitable environment for the child’s needs. Tactile perception is an important communication-channel in the infancy but physical contact is important for the parents too. Frequent physical contact causes the release of the hormone Oxytocin in parents and child as well. Oxytocin affects the child development in many areas positively as well as the behavior of both parents.

4/4/2017 12:30 PM
1:00 PM


Breast milk for life: Women who share more than milk and nutrition.

Carol  Bartle, RN, RM, IBCLC, PGDip Child Advocacy, MHSc
Breastfeeding support is not a government priority in most countries despite compelling evidence of economic and population health benefits. Support for human milk banks is also missing from many population health agendas. So, when mothers need more breast milk for their babies than they are producing themselves, an option is mother to mother milk sharing. This has emerged from the underground and subterranean, through social media channels, on-line and mother-communities. This session will explore why and how women are sharing their breast milk, the diversity, the controversy, and how women are sharing much more than nutrition.

4/4/2017 2:00 PM
2:30 PM


One mother at a time: the art of 1:1 help

E. Connor  Kelly, MA, BC-DMT, LPC
This talk will explore our core value of helping one mother at a time through several mediums of 1:1 support and offering information. Our contact with mothers ranges from casual such as school pick up to phone calls, emails and social media. Telephone helping is still relevant today although many mothers use social media. This talk will outline integrating our knowledge with effective presencing (empathetic listening), finding a mentor and accepting our limits.

4/4/2017 2:30 PM
3:00 PM


Does Breastfeeding Help with Postpartum Depression?

Kathleen  Kendall-Tackett, PhD, IBCLC, FAPA
Breastfeeding and depression have a complicated relationship. Depressed mothers are less likely to breastfeed, but breastfeeding lowers mothers’ risk of depression. Does breastfeeding really help lower mothers’ risk or is it only the healthier mothers doing it? This presentation will help sort the research on this challenging question by examining data from prospective studies, and studies of the physiology that underlies both depression and breastfeeding. We will also discuss how mothers’ feelings regarding breastfeeding are important to consider, and how it can actually help mothers who are depressed recover from their depression.

4/4/2017 3:00 PM
3:30 PM


Sweet Sleep

Teresa  Pitman
Sleep is a hot topic for most new parents! In this session, we'll discuss normal baby sleep and strategies to maximize sleep for parents - including bedsharing. While bedsharing has become controversial, for breastfeeding families this can be a very safe option if you follow the Safe Sleep Seven guidelines, which we will discuss in detail.

4/4/2017 3:30 PM
4:00 PM


Neurobiology of Attachment: Implications for Birth and Breastfeeding

Ibone  Olza, MD, PhD
Neurobiological mechanisms during and just after birth play an essential role in the generation of mother-child attachment in humans. Breastfeeding is the physiological tool for attachment that provides the intimate mother infant relationship needed for healthy mental development that J.Bowlby described. Interference in this process may have long term consequences for the child's health and behavior.

4/5/2017 11:00 AM
11:30 AM


To cut or not (always) to cut, that is the question.

Myrte van  Lonkhuijsen, IBCLC
An exploration of ways in which breastfeeding 'itself' can be part of dealing with tongue tie. How can latch and parent- child interaction improve breastfeeding and orofacial development before, after, or even instead of clipping ties?

4/5/2017 11:30 AM
12:00 PM


Exclusively pumping: living between two worlds

Stephanie  Casemore, B.A., B.Ed., OCT, CBC (CBI)
This presentation will illuminate the world of exclusively pumping moms; share a number of best practices; and reflect on the challenges and opportunities exclusively pumping offers moms, babies, and those who support them.

4/5/2017 12:00 PM
12:30 PM


Breastfeeding and working - yes, we can!

Giorgia  Cozza
In most cases the return to work marks the mother’s first separation from her baby. It's an intense moment emotionally for the mother and for the baby, and in this situation, breastfeeding can be a great ally to both. That's why it's so important to give the mother all of the relevant information and the necessary support so that she can continue to happily breastfeed for as long as she and her baby like. It's also important to state that this is a right that every working mother and every child should enjoy – a right that society and the working world are called on to respect.

4/5/2017 12:30 PM
1:00 PM


Making LLL visible: how networking and collaboration can raise your profile

Lisa  Manning
LLLNZ co-Director and former journalist Lisa Manning looks at ways to boost your group's profile by forming alliances in your communities. Lisa provides information and suggestions on publicizing La Leche League including how to overcome personal obstacles and apprehensions about networking in public, collaborating with others in your communities and dealing with the media.

This recording is 15 minutes long to allow for discussion time. Make the most of this opportunity to dialog with a world renowed media specialist.

4/5/2017 2:00 PM
2:30 PM


Breastfeeding an older child – why on earth?

Meg  Nagle, IBCLC
Normal breastfeeding duration for humans, how we compare with other primates, common criticisms and the responses we can give, and what the research says about our "old" milk! Most importantly...how can we help normalize breastfeeding to natural term?

4/5/2017 2:30 PM
3:00 PM


Leading LLL meetings online

Melissa  Fuller-Killgore, MS
Meagan Wells
More and more mothers are turning to social media for breastfeeding information, and attending online meetings in preference to face- to-face events. How can LLL Leaders effectively lead online meetings? What are some top tips for setting up and managing a Facebook LLL meeting?

4/5/2017 3:00 PM
3:30 PM


Marijuana during pregnancy and breastfeeding: What do we know? What don’t we know?

Laurel  Wilson, IBCLC,B Sc, CLE, CLD, CCCE
As cannabis use around the world increases, concern for mothers and babies in the perinatal period also increases. Explore the current research on marijuana use in the perinatal period. What is still not known?

4/5/2017 3:30 PM
4:00 PM


The art of breastfeeding twins or more

Karen  Gromada, MSN, RN, IBCLC, FILCA
What are the key points that women expecting or new mothers of twins, triplets or more, and the health professionals caring for them most need to know about breastfeeding multiple-birth infants?

4/6/2017 11:00 AM
11:30 AM


Colics and SIDS

James  McKenna, PhD
A conceptual model of the biological origins of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and colic: Is the human infant's susceptibility to either SIDS or colic due to our species' unique breathing control system that is necessary for speech? What is "breastsleeping" and how can it theoretically function to help protect infants as they transition out of susceptibility to either SIDS and/or colic?

4/6/2017 11:30 AM
12:00 PM


Birth, Breastfeeding, and Risk

Alison  Barrett, BSc, MD, FRCS(C), FRANZCOG
This session will touch on the idea of risk and the impact of birthing interventions on breastfeeding. Breastfeeding relationships can be sabotaged by a variety of birthing interventions, yet some dyads seem much more robust to these influences. How do we talk to parents about the risk to their babies or to themselves when birth interventions happen? If we don’t speak about potential breastfeeding challenges, are we guilty of paternalism?

4/6/2017 12:00 PM
12:30 PM



Helen  Gray, MPhil, IBCLC
A quick look at the basics of the International (WHO) Code: What products are covered? What are an LLL Leader’s responsibilities? What are our own LLLI policies?

And consider ways parents and Leaders can support the Code in their own communities.

4/6/2017 12:30 PM
1:00 PM


Why fathers also need support for breastfeeding and how to provide it?

Pascal  Ghazi
Pascal Ghazi with Grégoire Berbudeau, Christophe Dousseau, Frédéric Roussel

The idea of the session is to explain how fathers are often left out of the picture when it comes to breastfeeding or at least that is what the outsiders think.

But the role of the dad is essential for the success of a nice breastfeeding experience and to assume fully that role the father needs to find support.

The support for men is more efficient if it comes from other men because then we feel more comfortable talking about ourselves and about our place in the breastfeeding experience. We are able to achieve that through exchanges in a private discussion group on FB that allows us to share all our questions in an intimate environment.

It goes through steps like, listening, sharing experiences and providing clinical breastfeeding information when needed.

4/6/2017 2:00 PM
2:30 PM


Baby-Led Weaning -- Transitioning to solid foods at the baby’s pace

Gill  Rapley, PhD
An overview of baby-led weaning (BLW): What it looks like, why it makes sense, and what makes it a natural fit with the ethos of LLL? Explore some of the common misunderstandings that surround the approach and consider why the way solids are introduced matters for babies.

4/6/2017 2:30 PM
3:00 PM


LLL: Working Globally and Mother-to-Mother

Eden  Anderson, MA
This session explores LLL’s unique vision and understanding of the elements necessary for a breastfeeding- friendly world – from the organisation’s earliest years. It describes today’s key global players and programmes in breastfeeding support and advocacy, all influenced by LLL, going forward in the 21st century.

4/6/2017 3:00 PM
3:30 PM


No Mother Left Behind: Creating the Communication and Culture to Reduce Breastfeeding Disparities Among African American Women

Kimberly Seals  Allers
Despite some improvements, lingering racial disparities still exist in breastfeeding, particularly at the six-month and 12-month exclusivity milestones. This presentation identifies five key cultural and structural barriers to breastfeeding for the African American community as well as eight strategies for overcoming barriers, engaging with community and communicating effectively with African American women and men. Attendees will be able to better understand how current breastfeeding messaging and protocols may be disconnected from the lived experience of African American women and will understand strategies for developing more culturally appropriate messaging.

4/6/2017 3:30 PM
4:00 PM


Kangaroula™ -supporting skin-to-skin contact at birth

Jill  Bergman, B.A. HDE
A Kangaroula advocates for the biological needs of the BABY at birth. Immediate skin-to-skin contact provides the best developmental care for the baby’s brain. Labour oxytocin continues as mum and baby are together and so feel safe. This supports early breastfeeding and bonding.

4/7/2017 11:00 AM
11:30 AM


How to Talk so Little Kids will Listen

Joanna  Faber
Joanna Faber will share the communication principles that dramatically improve relationships with children of all ages -- from tots to teens. This approach will help parents who find themselves locked in a power struggle with their children (and don’t we all at some time!) find better ways to communicate and connect. It demonstrates truly practical methods to use humor, creativity and respect - instead of bribes, threats and punishments - to get cooperation from your children. It offers a new perspective on the child parent relationship that will make life with children less stressful and more satisfying.

4/7/2017 11:30 AM
12:00 PM


Solid facts for a smooth introduction of complementary foods

Adriano  Cattaneo, MD, MSc
When will you give your baby other foods and drinks, in addition to breastmilk? What foods and drinks will you give your baby, in addition to breastmilk? These or similar questions are often posed to health professionals by parents. The mere fact that these questions are posed is worrisome. Do parents really need professional advice to introduce solids in the diets of their infants? Have they lost a capacity that until some generations ago all parents had to have? The objective of my presentation is to provide information that will hopefully re-empower parents.

4/7/2017 12:00 PM
12:30 PM


Joys of Leadership

Sandy  Moore-Furneaux
Do you wonder WHY Leaders become Leaders when we "don't get paid"? In this presentation, we are going to share some of the joys and rewards of La Leche League leadership. While we do work to help other breastfeeding families, our work has many rewards, and we have a lot of fun, too! What we gain ranges from emotional rewards--such as deep satisfaction and fulfillment--of knowing we've helped others to have a successful breast/chestfeeding relationship, to practical rewards of leadership, to the development of life-long friendships and just plain fun! Please join us as we share what we gain through photos and narration!

4/7/2017 12:30 PM
1:00 PM


Breastfeeding and human rights

Johanna  Rhys-Davies
Is there a Human right to Breastfeed? Is there a human right for a baby to receive Breastmilk? What are Human Rights? Why do they matter to breastfeeding mothers and parents, and why should they matter to LLL Leaders and to other Breastfeeding supporters? This session is an introduction to all of these questions and more. The session will explore why a Human Rights Discourse is significant to breastfeeding education and advocacy. It will also examine how the efforts of LLL Leaders and other breastfeeding supporters are essential to placing breastfeeding within a Human Rights framework.

4/7/2017 2:00 PM
2:30 PM


Gentle parenting, Breastfeeding While Nourishing Sibling Relationships

Sarah  Sprague
There are many myths and misconceptions about breastfeeding a newborn while you have another child at home. The truth is that breastfeeding can be a time of calm, quiet and bonding for all, not simply for mom and baby. Sarah will be discussing some common misunderstandings as well as strategies for gently building the sibling bond while ensuring a strong healthy breastfeeding relationship for mom and baby. Far from breastfeeding being something you have to find time for, breastfeeding is something that MAKES TIME for the older sibling.

4/7/2017 2:30 PM
3:00 PM


Breastfeeding: One Man’s Perspective

James  Akre
Having participated in the 40th and 50th anniversary conferences, it is no small thing to present at the 60th. “Building a Legacy” coincides with a desire, in my 73rd year, to communicate effectively about the universal significance of breast milk and breastfeeding. I dedicated my 2005 book (The problem with breastfeeding, Hale) to the seven Founding Mothers whose compassion, vision and faith radiate in the smiles of three generations of mothers and children in 70 countries. Today, I conclude that breastfeeding is neither a woman’s issue nor a man’s issue, but a human issue of fundamental importance to us all.

4/7/2017 3:00 PM
3:30 PM


Infant Sleep Training: History, Research, and Outcomes

Diana  West, BA, IBCLC
Parents hear confusing recommendations about sleep training and “crying-it-out.” This presentation provides a discussion of the history underlying infant sleep training methods, their effects on feeding, and research findings on psychological and physiological outcomes.

4/7/2017 3:30 PM
4:00 PM


How Global Has the LLLI Legacy Become?

A look at the exciting things that LLLI has been accomplishing worldwide in a myriad of languages, cultures and locations!


James Akre

Author and commentator James Akre focuses on the sociocultural dimension of the universal biological norm for nurturing and nourishing infants and young children, and on identifying pathways for ensuring that breastfeeding and breast milk feeding are routine once more everywhere. His international public health and development career spans five decades, including more than 30 years with agencies of the United Nations system (ILO, UNICEF, and WHO where he was the liaison officer (1990-2004) for LLLI), and seven years working in Turkey, Cameroon, and Haiti. He is a member of the editorial board and reviewer for the International Breastfeeding Journal, and he is a reviewer for Pediatrics and Maternal & Child Nutrition. He is a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of LLL France and a past member (2004-2010) of the Board of Directors of the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBLCE).

Kimberly Seals Allers

Kimberly Seals Allers is an award-winning journalist, author, and a nationally recognized media commentator, consultant, and advocate for breastfeeding and infant health. A former senior editor at ESSENCE and writer at FORTUNE magazine, Kimberly is widely considered a leading voice in the counterculture movement in infant feeding. Last year, her online commentaries on the social, structural, and racial complexities of maternal and child health issues received over 10 million page views. Kimberly’s fifth book, The Big Let Down—How Medicine, Big Business and Feminism Undermine Breastfeeding was published by St. Martin’s Press in January 2017.

As a consultant, Kimberly provides strategic communication services to hospitals, non-profits and other public health-related organizations, with an expertise in engaging communities of color. For over seven years, she has led innovative community-based projects in New Orleans, Birmingham, Detroit, and Philadelphia that explore the impact of “first food deserts”—communities that severely lack accessible resources to support mothers who choose to breastfeed—and developing community-partnered strategies to transform these areas into more breastfeeding supportive environments. She is currently the project director for The First Food Friendly Community Initiative (3FCI), a W.K. Kellogg-funded pilot project in Detroit and Philadelphia to create a national accreditation process for breastfeeding-friendly communities. Kimberly also serves vice president of the Board of Governors for the Commission for the Accreditation of Birth Centers (CABC).

Eden Anderson, MA

Eden is a La Leche League Leader with LLL Edinburgh and is Chair, Council of Directors, LLLGB. She represented LLL on the Scottish Government Maternal and Infant Nutrition Task Force, and participates in UK-wide breastfeeding coalition activities. She is a member of the DCANs and Global Leaders Committee. Eden has worked in Canada in publishing, as a social policy advisor at the provincial government level, and had her own piano studio. She has led LLL Groups in Toronto, in Honolulu and Berkeley, CA; in the 1970’s, she taught high school in Tanzania. Eden and her husband have three adult sons.

Alison Barrett, BSc, MD, FRCS(C), FRANZCOG

Alison Barrett is a Canadian-trained specialist obstetrician and gynaecologist. She works as a consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist and family planning specialist in Hamilton, New Zealand. She has been a Clinical Director of Obstetrics in New Zealand and a Chief of Staff at Stevensen Memorial Hospital in Ontario, Canada. She has served on The National Breastfeeding Committee in New Zealand and helped write Health Canada’s Guidelines for Infant Feeding. Alison is a trustee of the Homebirth Association of New Zealand and a member of the Professional Advisory Group to La Leche League New Zealand. She has a university degree in science with a focus in ecology, and this continues to inform her work.

Carol Bartle, RN, RM, IBCLC, PGDip Child Advocacy, MHSc

Carol Bartle has a nursing, midwifery and lactation consultant background and she is a member of the La Leche League International Professional Advisory Board/Health Advisory Committee and the Professional Advisory Group for La Leche League New Zealand. Carol has a post- graduate diploma in Child Advocacy and a Masters of Health Sciences from the University of Otago. Her qualitative research thesis explores mothers’ experiences of initiating lactation and establishing breastfeeding in a neonatal intensive care environment. Major interests include ethics, NICU infant feeding issues and mother-baby well-being, infant feeding in emergencies, climate change and health, the International Code, breastfeeding and infant feeding politics, mother-to-mother peer counselling, and mothers and babies in prison. Carol works at Te Puawaitanga ki Otautahi Trust with the Canterbury Breastfeeding Advocacy Service in Christchurch New Zealand, and as a policy analyst with the New Zealand College of Midwives.

Kajsa Brimdyr, PhD, CLC

Dr. Kajsa Brimdyr is an experienced ethnographer, researcher and international expert in the implementation of continuous, uninterrupted skin to skin in the first hour after birth. She is the Lead Ethnographic Researcher for Healthy Children Project, Inc., a non-profit, NGO agency as well as a Professor in Maternal Child Health at Union Institute and University. She is a published author and the award-winning director of The Magical Hour: Holding Your Baby for the First Hour After Birth, produced with Ann-Marie Widström and Kristin Svensson. Together the three also created and produced the groundbreaking DVD Skin to Skin in the First Hour after Birth: Practical Advice for Staff after Vaginal and Cesarean Birth. Her current research involves using video ethnography to change practice in hospital settings to improve continuous skin-to-skin for the first hour after cesarean and vaginal births, and the implications of labor medications on this vulnerable time.

Stephanie Casemore, B.A., B.Ed., OCT, CBC (CBI)

Stephanie Casemore is a teacher, writer, and breastfeeding counsellor living in eastern Ontario, Canada. She started her professional career as a secondary school English teacher, a field in which she continues to work, and she currently attempts to balance her work as a teacher with the work of supporting new mothers and babies— sometimes even quite successfully. Stephanie first experienced breastfeeding as a challenge, exclusively pumping for her first child, and then as a healing experience, breastfeeding her second child. Transforming her experiences into an opportunity to support other mothers, Stephanie wrote Exclusively Pumping Breast Milk: A Guide to Providing Expressed Breast Milk for Your Baby and Breastfeeding, Take Two: Successful Breastfeeding the Second Time Around. In addition to her books, she offers women a supportive online environment to access valuable camaraderie and information through a number of websites and Facebook groups.

Adriano Cattaneo, MD, MSc

Adriano Cattaneo is a retired epidemiologist who co-ordinated for several years the Unit for Health Services Research and International Health at the Institute for Maternal and Child Health “IRCCS Burlo Garofolo”, Trieste, Italy, a WHO Collaborating Centre for Maternal and Child Health. He holds an MD degree from the University of Padova and an MSc degree from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He has spent most of his professional career in developing countries, including four years as medical officer with the WHO in Geneva. He has authored more than 200 publications in scientific journals and books, more than 80 of which in peer reviewed journals. Many of these publications, and of the research and development projects from which they derived, are about infant feeding.

Suzanne Colson, PhD, MSc, BA

Suzanne Colson is a midwife and a nurse. Her thesis introduced a new breastfeeding paradigm called biological nurturing and won the prestigious English Royal College of Nursing Inaugural Akinsanya Award for originality and scholarship in doctoral studies. Suzanne is an Akinsanya scholar 2007 and an honorary senior lecturer at Canterbury Christ Church University. She is an honorary member and founding mother/leader of La Leche League France. She is also on the professional advisory board of LLL of Great Britain. She has more than 40 years clinical experience supporting breastfeeding mothers in both hospital and community settings. Suzanne is the author of numerous articles, research papers, a book translated into 4 languages and 3 DVDs some of which can be found on the BN website. Her doctoral thesis is available from The British Library. Retired from active midwifery practice, Suzanne organizes 5-day biological nurturing certification workshops, remains available for clinical consultation and lectures widely across the world.

Giorgia Cozza

Giorgia Cozza, Italian journalist has worked for years with various magazines and specialized websites dealing with pregnancy, nursing, psychology, health of mother and child. She's the author of more than twenty essays for future and new parents (including Bebè a costo zero, Benvenuto fratellino Benvenuta sorellina, Tutte le mamme hanno il latte... tranne me! Allattamento al seno) that have become a reference point for many families in Italy and abroad (in several European countries and in China). She writes children's fairy tales too. La Leche League Italy commissioned her to write the book Allattare e lavorare si può! which offers practical solutions for solving immediate difficulties and helps women to arrange their family and work commitments more effectively. Mother of four children, thanks to them she has had the opportunity and joy of experiencing the topics covered in her books.

Joanna Faber

Joanna Faber lectures on communication skills around the country, and gives workshops for parents and teachers. Joanna and Julie King’s new book, "How To Talk So LITTLE Kids Will Listen" has just been released by Simon and Schuster. Joanna is also the daughter of Adele Faber, co-author of the best-selling books How to Talk so Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk, and Siblings Without Rivalry. Joanna contributed heavily to How to talk So Kids Can Learn, at Home and in School, with her frontline experience in the classroom as a bilingual special education teacher in West Harlem. She contributed a new afterword titled The Next Generation to the 30th anniversary edition of How To Talk So Kids Will Listen. Joanna lives in the Hudson Valley area of New York with her husband, three sons, dogs, cats and an assortment of chickens.

Hilary Flower, PhD

Hilary Flower, Ph.D., is the author of Adventures in Tandem Nursing: Breastfeeding during Pregnancy and Beyond, which is launching its second edition this spring. To provide the most accurate and complete view of this important aspect of breastfeeding, she interviewed over 200 mothers for this book, and delved deeply into the scientific literature. She works as a geologist and lives in Florida with her two younger children now that her eldest has gone to college.

Melissa Fuller-Killgore, MS

Melissa Fuller-Killgore is an Adjunct Professor of Psychology and is passionate about breastfeeding. She volunteers as a La Leche League (LLL) Leader, two years this April, leading both in-person and online meetings and serves the AL, MS, LA, & AR LLL Area as Associate Coordinator of Leader Accreditation (ACLA) and Web Administrator for the Area’s website. In addition, she was a Founding Board Member and current Vice- President for the North Louisiana Breastfeeding Coalition. She also admins and maintains many breastfeeding Facebook Pages and Groups. Her goal is to support breastfeeding families in the rural south. She currently resides with her 4-year-old son and husband of 8 years in Shreveport, Louisiana, USA.

Pascal Ghazi

Pascal Ghazi, is the husband of an LLL leader, father of a 4-year-old breastfed boy, and founder of the “Papallaitants – Breastfeeding Dads” initiative in 2014.

Today we have 150 fathers in the French Group, 50 in the Spanish-speaking group and 20 in the English group. The English-speaking group is still a bit slow to get up to speed but we are hopeful it will take off (husbands of LLL Leaders are most welcome to join me and co-administer the different groups. We respect the LLL philosophy of parenting through breastfeeding and husbands of LLL Leaders are usually knowledgeable of this philosophy).

Helen Gray, MPhil, IBCLC

Helen is a La Leche League Leader in south London, UK, where she co-leads the LLL Clapham group.

Coming from a background in anthropology and human evolution, she has a particular interest in ways human biology and culture influence breastfeeding and the way we mother our babies.

Helen is joint coordinator of the UK working group of the World Breastfeeding Trends Initiative (WBTi). She is on the social media team of La Leche League GB (LLLGB) and represents LLLGB on the Baby Feeding Law Group, which works to implement the International (WHO) Code into UK law. She is also actively involved with her local maternity services to improve mothers’ experiences.

Karen Gromada, MSN, RN, IBCLC, FILCA

Karen Kerkhoff Gromada, MSN, RN, IBCLC, FILCA was accredited as a Leader in 1975. She formed the first LLL group for mothers of multiples after the birth of her twin sons and still leads this group. The experiences of the group’s mothers provided the basis for her book Mothering Multiples: Breastfeeding and Caring for Twins or More. Her numerous articles and chapters about breastfeeding multiples have been published in professional and lay publications. An IBCLC since 1991, Ms.Gromada has worked as a lactation consultant in both a private practice and hospital settings. She also has experience as an adjunct clinical instructor for the University of Cincinnati College of Nursing and in labor and delivery, childbirth education and postpartum discharge nursing care. A former International Lactation Consultant Association (ILCA) president (1994-96), she was designated Fellow of the International Lactation Consultant Association (FILCA) in 2008.

Dorothea Käsermann

I am Dorethea Käsermann, a Communication Skills Trainer from La Leche League Switzerland (Europe). My husband and I have four grownup children and live in the countryside near the city of Lucerne. My breastfeedingjourney started in Australia when our first son was born. I became a breastfeeding counselor with NMAA (now: Australian Breastfeeding Association) when our first daughter had her first birthday. Then we moved to Switzerland and I became a breastfeeding counselor with LLL, shortly before the birth of our second daughter. When our second son was three weeks, I first met the ladies from CSD Germany – and was hooked. I became a CSD Facilitator and later a CSD Trainer. My youngest is now eighteen and I travel around Europe to train new CSD Facilitators.

E. Connor Kelly, MA, BC-DMT, LPC

Connor became a LLL-Leader in January 1995 in Colorado Springs, USA. She has been a Leader in Germany (Baumholder, Kaiserslautern, Ramstein), Italy (Vicenzia, Sicily) and for the past 12 plus years in New Zealand (New Plymouth). She is currently a Leader for LLL of Guam. She has two sons, Patrick (24) an aerospace engineer with Virgin Galactic and Teague a sophomore at Oberlin College. She also holds a master’s degree in dance/movement therapy (NYU) and is a board certified dance/movement therapist (ADTA) and Licensed Professional Counselor (Colorado). She currently teaches yoga and trains and supervises dance/movement therapists in Taiwan, New Zealand and Australia. Her husband, Steve Harvey is a psychologist and together they created and teach Physical Storytelling.

Kathleen Kendall-Tackett, PhD, IBCLC, FAPA

Dr. Kendall-Tackett is a health psychologist and International Board Certified Lactation Consultant, and the Owner and Editor-in-Chief of Praeclarus Press, a small press specializing in women's health. Dr. Kendall-Tackett is Editor-in-Chief of two peer-reviewed journals: Clinical Lactation and Psychological Trauma. She is Fellow of the American Psychological Association in Health and Trauma Psychology, Past President of the APA Division of Trauma Psychology, and a member of the Board for the Advancement of Psychology in the Public Interest. Dr. Kendall-Tackett specializes in women's-health research including breastfeeding, depression, trauma, and health psychology, and has won many awards for her work including the 2016 Outstanding Service to the Field of Trauma Psychology from the American Psychological Association’s Division 56. Dr. Kendall-Tackett has authored more than 400 articles or chapters, and is currently completing her 35th book, The Phantom of the Opera: A Social History of the World’s Most Popular Musical. Her most recent books include: Depression in New Mothers, 3rd Edition (20176, Routledge UK), Women’s Mental Health Across the Lifespan (2017, Routledge US, with Lesia Ruglass), Psychology of Trauma 101 (2015, Springer, with Lesia Ruglass) and The Science of Mother-Infant Sleep (2014, Praeclarus, with Wendy Middlemiss). Her websites are UppityScienceChick.com, BreastfeedingMadeSimple.com, KathleenKendall-Tackett.com, and PraeclarusPress.com.

Evelin Kirkilionis

Evelin Kirkilionis studied biology at the universities of Kaiserslautern and Freiburg. With her doctoral-thesis specialization on behavioural biology. Co-founder of the independent Research Group Human Ethology (FVM – Forschungsgruppe Verhaltensbiologie des Menschen). For 1990 regularly longer-term stays in various countries of North Africa, Central and South East Asia.

The main focus of her scientific interest is on the child’s development in early childhood, particularly on the parent-child relationship in the first years of life and a childcare aimed at the child’s need. In this child-oriented care she integrated the concept of clinging young with its phylogenetic components.

An important aspects of her work is the transfer of scientific findings into practice for various professional groups and institutions or other interested audiences. She is giving lectures and further educations courses on midwife and teachers' associations, paediatricians, psychotherapists, parents' associations, employees of advice centres for families and child guidance. Author of books and professional articles.

Myrte van Lonkhuijsen, IBCLC

Originally trained as an educational scientist I became an IBCLC in 2000. As mother of 3 daughters I experienced hand-on how complicating, frustrating, fascinating and easy breastfeeding could be. Over the last 17 years the interest and awe have increased. I work in a private practice, teach, have been part of developing e-learnings about breastfeeding for professionals and was chairwoman of the NVL for 5 years. In my daily work I aim to bring scientific knowledge together with best practice and some creative tweaking when needed, so parents and professionals feel stronger in their own choices about breastfeeding.

Lisa Manning

Lisa has been a La Leche League Leader in New Zealand for seven years. She is currently the co-Director of LLLNZ and looks after media relations. She’s an at- home mum to horse-mad Maia, who is 10, and married to the British actor John Rhys-Davies. In another life she was an award-winning television journalist, presenter and executive producer. “I had a wonderful career but when I became a mother I knew then I had a real job! Perhaps ironically one of my career highlights came through my voluntary work with LLL when I was fortunate enough to interview the Founders for LLLNZ’s 50th birthday DVD and LLLI’s 60thanniversary tribute film.”

James McKenna, PhD

James McKenna is the Rev. Edmund P. Joyce, CSC, Professor of Anthropology and the Director of the Mother-Baby Behavioral Sleep Lab at the University of Notre Dame. A world-renowned expert on infant sleep – in particular the practice of bed sharing or “co-sleeping,” especially in relation to breastfeeding, McKenna is a widely quoted authority on this frequently debated parenting issue. As director of Notre Dame’s Mother-Baby Behavioral Sleep Laboratory, he is known for conducting the first ever physiological and behavioral studies of the differences between solitary and co-sleeping mother-infant pairs. McKenna is a strong proponent of co-sleeping and focuses his research specifically on the relationship between sleeping arrangements, feeding method and risk factors for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). The author of “Sleeping With Baby: A Parent’s Guide to Co-sleeping," McKenna also has published more than 130 refereed articles in medical, anthropology and psychology journals and completed two monographs on SIDS and infant sleep.

Sandy Moore-Furneaux

Sandy is a La Leche League Leader in Norman, OK, USA. In addition to supporting a local Group, one of her great joys is working with anyone interested in leadership, as well as with other Leader Accreditation Department representatives. Between them, she and her husband, John, have six “children,” all adults, in their blended family. The couple also has six grandchildren (including two unofficially adopted) with another on the way. For hobbies, Sandy engages in animal rescue of reptiles and amphibians; she is trying to learn to knit; and she enjoys traveling to see children and grandchildren as well as to LLL events to meet other Leaders around the world.

Meg Nagle, IBCLC

In between breastfeeding her youngest boy, chasing after her oldest two boys, blogging and occasionally sleeping… Meg works with women to help them reach their breastfeeding goals! She was a La Leche League Leader for seven years before becoming an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. Meg is the author of, Boobin’ All Day… Boobin’ All Night. A Gentle Approach To Sleep For Breastfeeding Families. She has published articles in numerous parenting magazines and websites. A short documentary, Lactaboobiphobia which is based on one of her blog posts about breastfeeding in public and was released in 2016.

Ibone Olza, MD, PhD

I am an MD and mother of three who has experienced the joy of extended breastfeeding. As a researcher, I have investigated the effects of intrapartum synthetic oxytocin use, the neuroendocrinology and psychology of childbirth, PTSD and obstetric violence. As an activist I belong since 1996 to Via Lactea, Spain´s oldest breastfeeding support group, and I cofounded the forum “Apoyocesareas” (2001) and “Childbirth is ours” (2003), a consumer group that promotes respectful evidence-based obstetric care in Spain. I am passionate about helping parents and specially women enjoy motherhood, attach healthily to their infants and enjoy breastfeeding for as long as they want. As a perinatal psychiatrist, I work in a non-medicalized way using evidence-based approaches, with a holistic framework integrating Attachment Theory and Ecotherapy principles. I offer breastfeeding support for mothers suffering from mental disorders. I have developed an extensive Perinatal Mental Training program online in Spanish: http://saludmentalperinatal.es/

William Parker, PhD

William Parker, PhD, has studied biochemistry and immunology at Duke University since 1993. Best known for the discovery of the function of the human vermiform appendix (a safe-house for bacteria), William has spent the last 15 years looking at fundamental cultural causes of inflammation in Western societies. His work on “biota alteration”, a concept which evolved from the “hygiene hypothesis”, has led to the discovery that intestinal worms, called helminths, are very supportive of healthy neuropsychiatric function in adults and in children. William has studied microbial communities in a variety of systems, including wild rats, laboratory mice, and African mole rats. William has published more than 100 peer- reviewed papers, including a number of studies evaluating the role of the microbiota in inflammation and disease.

Teresa Pitman

Teresa has been a La Leche League Leader for almost 40 years, and is a co-author of the Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, Sweet Sleep, and 14 other published books on parenting, breastfeeding and related topics. She's a frequent speaker at conferences. Teresa has four grown children (all breastfed) and eight grandchildren (also all breastfed).

Gill Rapley, PhD

Gill has over 35 years’ experience in infant feeding, as practitioner, teacher, writer and researcher. She qualified originally as a health visitor / public health nurse and practiced for 20 years, branching off briefly to train and practice as a midwife. She became a voluntary breastfeeding counsellor in 1986 and a lactation consultant in 1994, then worked for 14 years with the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative.

Gill’s Master’s studies in 2001/2 revealed that babies naturally begin to feed themselves with solid food at around six months, given the opportunity. Her doctoral research, completed in 2015, compared spoon feeding of purees with self-feeding of graspable foods, and highlighted some important differences.

Gill is known worldwide as the pioneer of baby-led weaning (BLW). She is the co-author, with Tracey Murkett, of four books on parenting, beginning with the definitive Baby-led Weaning: Helping your baby to love good food, published in 2008.

Johanna Rhys-Davies

Johanna Rhys-Davies graduated from Oxford University and spent around ten years as a barrister, specialising in domestic abuse cases, as well as immigration, asylum, and human rights law. Johanna was profoundly affected by becoming a mother and through her experience of mothering through breastfeeding with support from her local La Leche League group. In 2010 Johanna co-founded a local grassroots advocacy group to improve maternity care for her community, and in 2013 she joined the UK charity: Birthrights, as a speaker and trainer on Human Rights in Maternity care. She is also the legal trustee for the Iolanthe Trust, a charity awarding educational grants to midwives. Johanna accredited as an LLL Leader in 2014 and is a trustee and departmental Director of LLL of Great Britain (LLLGB). She co-leads a local LLL group in both South Wales (UK) and New South Wales (Australia) where she has personal ties. Johanna is passionate about ensuring inclusive appreciation for the work of every LLL Leader across the world, as well as making Human Rights Law accessible to those whom it effects the most. Johanna loves yoga, walking and living by the sea wherever she is in the world. She home educates her 7 year old son Bob, whom she nursed to natural term.

Lourdes Santaballa, BA, MS, IBCLC

Lourdes Santaballa is a community activist and organizer, having previously worked in the domestic violence, affordable housing, and economic equity movements and now dedicated to equity and outreach in birth and lactation. A La Leche League leader since 2008, she co-founded La Leche League Puerto Rico in 2011 and has participated in the Global Leader Council as well acted as District Advisor to her area and her chapter treasurer and facilitates two support groups monthly. She is a single parent to two children whom she nursed in tandem until the ages of 8 and 6 respectively and is active in online help communities both locally in Puerto Rico and globally. Lourdes has received various awards and recognitions for her achievements in the lactation field, is an IBCLC and doula, and is currently studying her Master’s degree in Clinical Integrative Nutrition.

Linda Smith, MPH, LCCE, IBCLC

Linda Smith’s 40-year career in women’s health advocacy and support began as a physical education teacher, and extended into her practice as childbirth educator, doula, and lactation consultant. She played a major role in the development of the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBLCE). She holds a Master’s in Public Health, is an Adjunct Instructor in the Boonshoft School of Medicine at Wright State University in Dayton OH, and is the author of 4 textbooks on birth and breastfeeding and co-authored La Leche League’s book Sweet Sleep. She has lectured in at least 15 countries; her presentations have been translated into 10 languages including Inuktitut.

Sarah Sprague

Sarah Sprague is the founder of Nurshable, a community resource for gentle parenting. Sarah is passionate about helping parents make sense of the often confusing behaviors of infancy and early childhood.

Naomi Stadlen

Naomi, mother and grandmother, has long experience of listening to mothers. She is a La Leche League Leader for Central London, LLLGB (27 years) and facilitates Mothers Talking, a weekly discussion group in London (26 years). Her two books have been warmly endorsed by LLLI: What Mothers Do – especially when it looks like nothing and How Mothers Love – and how relationships are born. She is an existential psychotherapist and specializes in seeing mothers.

Meagan Wells

Meagan is a millennial mother, La Leche League (LLL) Leader, and Human Resources professional who utilizes various technology and social media in her daily life. As an LLL Leader, Meagan supports the Leader accreditation process as an Associate Coordinator of Leader Applicants (ACLA), manages several social media accounts on Facebook and Instagram, hosts an online meeting, and admins several groups and pages ranging from her local LLL group to International LLL help forums. She is passionate about meeting parents where they are at and providing support in a variety of platforms and modalities to accommodate varying needs & reach specific demographics. Meagan, her husband, 2 kids, and variety of critters live in Seattle, WA USA.

Diana West, BA, IBCLC

Diana West is an international board certified lactation consultant (IBCLC) in New Jersey, a La Leche League Leader, and the Director of Media Relations for La Leche League International. She is the co-author of Sweet Sleep: Nighttime and Naptime Strategies for the Breastfeeding Family, the 8th edition of The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, The Breastfeeding Mother’s Guide to Making More Milk, Breastfeeding after Breast and Nipple Procedures, and ILCA’s popular Clinician’s Breastfeeding Triage Tool. She has also recently published a research article with a team led by Trevor MacDonald and Joy Noel-Weiss about trans men’s experiences with lactation and gender identity. Diana is the author of the groundbreaking book, Defining Your Own Success: Breastfeeding after Breast Reduction Surgery. She has a bachelor’s degree in psychology, and is the administrator of the high-traffic BFAR.org and LowMilkSupply.org websites. In August, Diana is entering the seminary to begin a four year process of becoming a Unitarian Universalist minister. She has three nearly-grown sons and lives in the picturesque mountains of northwestern New Jersey in the United States.

Laurel Wilson, IBCLC,B Sc, CLE, CLD, CCCE

Laurel Wilson IBCLC, CEC, CCCE, CLD is an author, international speaker and pregnancy and lactation expert. She served as the Executive Director of Lactation Programs for CAPPA, the Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Association for 16 years and now is on the Senior Advisory Board. She is on the Board of Directors for the United States Breastfeeding Committee and also on the advisory Board for InJoy Birth and Parenting. She owns MotherJourney, focusing on training perinatal professionals on integrative and holistic information regarding pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding. She has her degree in Maternal Child Health: Lactation Consulting, and is an internationally board certificated lactation consultant. Wilson is the co-author of two books, The Attachment Pregnancy and The Greatest Pregnancy Ever and contributing author to Round the Circle: Doulas Talk About Themselves. She loves to blend today’s recent scientific findings with the mind/body/spirit wisdom. Laurel has been joyfully married to her husband for more than two decades two decades and has two wonderful grown sons, whose difficult births led her on a path towards helping emerging families create positive experiences. Laurel spends her free time reading piles of research, running in the mountains with her dogs, and kayaking. She believes that the journey into motherhood is a life-changing rite of passage that should be deeply honored and celebrated.

Jill Bergman, B.A. HDE

Jill Bergman has supported her husband Dr. Nils Bergman in Kangaroo Mother Care since he started the concept in 1988, and in a full-time capacity since 2000. She has used her degree and teacher's diploma to make four films and has written a book- Hold Your Prem- for parents of premature babies, all making the neuroscience that Nils teaches applicable in practice and translating care into non-technical language. Jill has a passion for supporting mothers in labor as a doula and, as a kangaroula, advocating for the needs of newborns, empowering mums and babies with early bonding and breastfeeding. She trains nursing staff and hospitals in the practicalities of skin-to-skin contact and developmental care. Jill has spoken internationally since 2012. She is currently involved in a WHO study training staff and parents in skin-to-skin contact for preterms. She and Nils have three super youngsters, all now married.


The La Leche League International organization is such a powerful and important name in the breastfeeding world that it would only be logical to partner with a manufacturer that could create a line of nursing apparel that moms could trust. In 2007, La Leche League International connected with Q-T Intimates, a New Jersey based 4th generation intimate apparel manufacturer that shared the same philosophies as La Leche League. Q-T was already committed to serving nursing moms around the world with a great selection of nursing bras. The synergies between LLLI and Q-T Intimates were immediately apparent and the cooperation and shared vision between both leadership teams made for a great partnership. After 10 years of working together, Q-T remains devoted to helping La Leche League continue to expand their reach to nursing moms around the world.