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Breastfeeding Symposium

AABC Breastfeeding Symposium 

This event was a pre-conference workshop at the 2016 Birth Institute


Featuring presentations on:

  • The Pittsburgh Black Breastfeeding Circle

  • Bed-sharing and breastfeeding

  • The Three Rivers Milk Bank

  • 1,000 Days in Gap City: Exploring the Relationship between the Breastfeeding Gap and the Word Gap



  • An Introduction to the Pittsburgh Black Breastfeeding Circle

The Breastfeeding Symposium will kick off with "An Introduction to the Pittsburgh Black Breastfeeding Circle (PBBC)" presented by Ngozi Doreen D. Tibbs, MPH, LCCE, IBCLC, one of the co-founders of the organization.  The presentation will describe the mission and purpose of the PBBC.  Ngozi will discuss the racial disparity in breastfeeding rates, community alliances that have facilitated the growth of the PBBC, as well as the impact that the PBBC has had on the Pittsburgh community.

  • Safe Infant Sleep

Dia Michels, BA, president and founder of Platypus Media, LLC, and Science, Naturally! LLC will give a presentation on bed-sharing.  The presentation will describe the physical and emotional benefits of co-sleeping, discuss the public health messages against all co-sleeping, and also identify the difference between chaotic sleep and elective bed-sharing environments.

  • Human Milk Banks

Taking the stage after the break will be Denise O'Connor, BS, IBCLC, Executive Director of the Three Rivers Mother's Milk Bank, located in Pittsburgh.  Denise will introduce the evidence for using donor milk in the NICU setting and in the birth center and outpatient setting.  This presentation will also explain some of the logistics and details of human milk banks, such as the associated health care costs, the process of donor screening, and milk processing and distribution protocols.

  • 1,000 Days in Gap City: Exploring the Relationship between the Breastfeeding Gap and the Word Gap

Dia Michels, BA will return to present "1,000 Days in Gap City: Exploring the Relationship between the Breastfeeding Gap and the Word Gap."  Dia will discuss how the breastfeeding and word gaps are related and explain the advantages of a breastfed baby over a formula-fed baby in early literacy.  In addition, the presentation will identify how a breastfeeding support worker can promote literacy.


Ngozi Tibbs

Ngozi Doreen D. Tibbs, MPH, LCCE, IBCLC

Ngozi is a recognized speaker and educator on cultural competency, diversity and health disparities. She serves as a Lamaze International Childbirth educator and trainer, co- founder of The Pittsburgh Black Breastfeeding Circle and is the founder of Sankofa Childbirth Education and Lactation Services. Ngozi also enjoys co-teaching nursing students at Magee Hospital and in the summers as an adjunct instructor. She holds a Masters Degree in Public Health with a concentration in health education and promotion. Ngozi is a respected member of the African American birth workers community in Pittsburgh, and passionately serves with other doulas and educators of color to reduce infant mortality and raise breastfeeding rates in the African American community. She is a published poet, artist and dancer and has an African percussion band with her husband and five children. 

Dia Michels

Dia Michels, BA

Dia is the president and founder of Platypus Media, LLC and Science, Naturally! LLC, publishing companies that produce books and resources on parenting for children, parents, and educators, and educational and fun books for kids on science, math, and other STEM topics.  Dia earned her degree in economics at Brandeis University and worked as a contributing journalist for a number of parenting magazines, as well as The Washington Post.  She is also a founding member of the DC Breastfeeding Coalition and was the founder of the Watkins After-School Enrichment Program, where she served as director for five years.  For more than a decade, Dia has been making public speeches and appearances on parenting, breastfeeding, and family sciences.  


Denise O'Connor

Denise O'Connor, BS, IBCLC

Denise is the founder of the Three Rivers Mothers’ Milk Bank, a nonprofit milk bank that provides hospitals and outpatients with pasteurized breast milk from screened donors. As an IBCLC certified lactation consultant, Denise had been working with nursing mothers and their infants for over 12 years. Denise earned her degree in neuroscience from The University of Pittsburgh and worked in cognitive rehabilitation prior to becoming a lactation consultant. Through the years, she has done extensive board work in organizations with a focus on women’s and children’s issues including Three Rivers Adoption Council, The Midwife Center, and The Pittsburgh Toy Lending Library.

Continuing Education

This has been approved by the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBCLE) for 4 LCERPs. 


This continuing nursing education activity was approved by the Pennsylvania State Nurses Association, an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.


This Live activity, 10th Annual AABC Birth Institute- "Building Bridges", with a beginning date of 09/22/2016, has been reviewed and is acceptable for up to 22.75 Prescribed credits by the American Academy of Family Physicians. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

  • AAFP Prescribed credit is accepted by the American Midwifery Certification Board and the American Medical Association. 
  • AAFP Prescribed credit is accepted by the American Medical Association as equivalent to AMA PRA Category I Credit TM toward the AMA Physician's Recognition Award. When applying for the AMA PRA, Prescribed credit earned must be reported as Prescribed credit, not as Category I.

For more information on contact hours, please contact Kate Bauer by email or phone (215-234-8068).


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