The next Milk Matters will be on June 27th at the Banneker Community Center from 9:30am-11:30am.

Milk Matters' Lactation Consultants

Ann Marie Neeley, IBCLC

Ann Marie is a board certified lactation consultant who has been supporting families in Bloomington, Indiana with breastfeeding since 2002. She currently works in the lactation departments of St. Vincent Women’s Hospital and IU Health Bloomington Hospital. In addition, she is co-founder of Flourish, a non-profit organization that provides free breastfeeding support in Bloomington in the form of a drop-in clinic. Her areas of interest include working with parents who have used opioids, infant tongue-tie, supporting employed parents, and perinatal mood disorders. She currently serves as President of the Monroe County Breastfeeding Coalition.

MaryAnn Martin, Ph.D., IBCLC

MaryAnn was first trained as a cell biologist, a career that brought her to Bloomington, IN in 1995. Motherhood led to her second career as a lactation consultant – blending her scientific training, fascination with the biology of breastfeeding, and enthusiasm to learn directly from mothers and babies. MaryAnn has been a La Leche League Leader since 2005 and a board certified lactation consultant since 2011. In 2015 she co-founded Flourish, a non-profit organization that provides free breastfeeding support for families in Monroe and surrounding counties. MaryAnn is the Secretary/Treasurer of the Monroe County Breastfeeding Coalition.

Sarah Blankenbaker, RN, IBCLC

Sarah is a registered nurse and board certificated lactation consultant. She has lived in Bloomington since 2006 and has been supporting families with new babies in this community since 2012. She works at IU Health Bloomington Hospital providing lactation support and teaching community breastfeeding classes. She has training in yoga, massage therapy, and herbalism. Sarah is passionate about living a healthy lifestyle and creating a strong community that supports and empowers women.

The Rest of the Flourish Board

Karen Thursby, President

Karen was born and raised in the Chicagoland area. She attended school in Boston and Dallas before finding her way to Bloomington in 2001. She currently works monitoring pharmaceutical research studies and travels extensively for her job. Karen learned to love breastfeeding and community based support groups while raising her daughter, Skye. She is passionate about providing parents with the support they need to be successful at feeding their children.

Leah Roy-Ehri, RN, BSN, IBCLC, Vice President

Leah first became passionate about working with families experiencing pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding and life beyond while interning with midwives and a Lactation Consultant during High School. She graduated from nursing school in 1998, and moved to Bloomington in 2000 to work at IU Health Bloomington Hospital in Labor and Delivery. She has worked in many areas of women and children’s health, with support for breastfeeding families and childbirth education being two consistent passions throughout her career. Leah is currently at home with her kids, and is honored to be able to continue to support new families as a member of the Flourish team.

Lydia Hamilton, MPH, CLS, Treasurer

Lydia was born and raised in Bloomington. She is currently a health behavior doctoral candidate at Indiana University where she conducts qualitative research. Her current research is focused on human milk banks. She is a certified lactation specialist (CLS) and aspires to become an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC). In her spare time, she watches too much Netflix, plays with her cats, and volunteers for Milk Matters.

Meagan Niese, CFRE, Secretary

Meagan Niese is the Development Director of the Community Foundation of Bloomington and Monroe County, leading the Foundation’s efforts in fundraising and donor services. She has more than 10 years of nonprofit fundraising and marketing experience. She has called Bloomington home since 2003. Meagan became passionate about advocating for women and lactation support when she became a mom in 2013 to her daughter, and then to twin boys in 2015. Having walked through the journey and challenges of being a new parent, she enjoys giving back to support other families through serving on the board of Flourish, Inc.

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