The joyful births of her two daughters inspired a career working with pregnant women and new families. Dianne first earned an undergraduate degree in Family and Consumer Studies from the University of Guelph, and in 2004 she graduated summa cum laude from McMaster University’s Midwifery Education Program. With a background in business and health care, and a yearning to return to her roots in north central Ontario, Dianne launched the practice of Midwives of Muskoka in 2005.
Dianne is involved in regional, provincial, national and international initiatives and committees to improve women and infant health. She has been a life long learner in her field, participating in extensive training in women's and infant health care at a variety of institutions. Currently, she is registered with the Canadian Paediatric Society as a Neonatal Resuscitation Provider Instructor and is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. She chairs the Muskoka Breastfeeding Coalition. Dianne is dedicated to improving the quality of life and well-being of Muskoka women and families.
Barbara Borland graduated from the Midwifery Education Programme at McMaster University in 1999, and began working with Countryside Midwifery Services in Millbank Ontario, serving a predominantly Old Order Mennonite and Amish population. After the home birth of her second daughter in 2000, Barbara began working with the newly formed Cambridge Midwives. Two and a half years later, after the home water birth of her third daughter, Barbara accepted a position with the neighbouring Community Midwives of Brantford. In 2005 Barb joined Dianne Smith in opening the midwifery practice in Muskoka.
Aside from her midwifery degree, Barbara holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Guelph, with a major in Women’s Studies and a minor in Psychology. She has also worked as a Pastry Chef, and a Counselor in a women’s crisis shelter and at a residence for teenage mothers. Barbara’s work within these diverse communities has given her a unique understanding of the varying needs of women and a passionate desire to help her clients have the most up to date information, as well as the wisdom of the ages, and be allowed the space to make their own informed decisions about how and where they give birth to their babies.
Sarah Jean Smith, RM
Sarah grew up in the Ottawa area and in Nashville (Music City, USA). Muskoka and Huntsville have been her home since 2000. She loves living in Muskoka in the straw-bale house she built and working in Muskoka as a Registered Midwife.
Sarah graduated from Ryerson University’s Midwifery Education Programme in the Spring of 2007. Her training has been with midwives in Owen Sound, Collingwood and Thunder Bay. She has also done placements with doctors and nurses in the Huntsville and Orillia hospitals and at Mount Sinai. Sarah has worked with urban, suburban and rural women.
Sarah also has a degree in Women Studies from Trent University, which has been beneficial to her midwifery practice. Sarah sees midwifery as the perfect way to combine a social-science heart with a science-leaning brain to create an exciting and rewarding career.
Dawn Dawson, RM
Shortly after the home water birth of her second child (who was lovingly caught by a Midwife of Muskoka), Dawn decided to finally pursue her lifelong dream of becoming a midwife. Dawn graduated from the Midwifery Education Program at Ryerson University, with honors, and is now thrilled to join the midwives who inspired and mentored her every step of the way. Throughout her education, Dawn was guided by a variety of health care providers including midwives, an obstetrician, labour and delivery nurses, and lactation consultants. Before becoming a midwife, Dawn spent many years working in Canada and Switzerland as a Registered Massage Therapist, specializing in prenatal massage. She also assisted the Midwives of Muskoka as a second attendant and volunteered with the Friends of Muskoka Midwives. Dawn is thrilled to continue to grow her family's roots in this beautiful region and committed to providing safe, woman centered care for Muskoka families.
Melissa Bevan, RM
Keatha Walsh, RM
Keatha grew up in Sudbury, Ontario and attended Laurentian University where she completed the Midwifery Education Programme. Her training included placements in Oshawa, Barrie, Sudbury and Bracebridge. During the program Keatha worked with midwives, nurses, obstetricians and many other health care professionals.
Prior to studying midwifery, Keatha obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with Honours. It was during that time that her interest in women's health and midwifery began. Keatha believes that women should be the primary decision makers in their care and she is very grateful to serve the women of Muskoka and surrounding areas.
In her spare time, Keatha enjoys knitting, fishing, travelling, and exploring the outdoors with her partner and black lab, Kade.