Passion, dedication, inspiration, innovation: these are some of the qualities exemplified by the midwives who have so far been awarded an RCM fellowship.

This membership category recognises individual midwives who provide exceptional leadership and deliver excellence in practice, education or research.

EdDoc MA, BSc(Hons), RM ADM, Dip AppSS.
Senior Midwifery Advisor (Education), Nursing and Midwifery Council, U.K.

Dr Jacqui Williams is a very experienced midwifery educator and midwife. Jacqui has kept strong links with midwifery practice and regularly works clinically in a local Trust. She is passionate about the unique role of the midwife and women-centred care. She is a Senior Fellow with the Higher Education Academy and has particular area of expertise in quality assurance. Her education interests are in open and distance learning. Jacqui is also an experienced midwifery expert witness.

Her doctoral work researched whether resilience develops or not in student midwives as they navigate the undergraduate midwifery programme. This work is currently being evaluated nationally. Jacqui’s role at the NMC is to advise on midwifery matters across the organisation ensuring that midwifery is considered in all of the NMC’s work. She is works with a wide range of stakeholders to promote the adoption of the midwifery standards and influence the maternity agenda.

Tom has practiced as a team midwife delivering caseload-based care, a senior charge midwife within a neonatal unit and an advanced neonatal nurse practitioner. He is currently a Head of Programme for the Women’s, Children, Young People and Families team within NHS Education for Scotland (NES) and has been a midwife since 1999. He is the strategic lead for the Scottish Multiprofessional Maternity Development Programme (SMMDP) and has additional responsibility for national midwifery, maternity and neonatal workforce and educational developments.

He is an Honorary Advanced Neonatal Nurse Practitioner (ANNP) within NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde, undertaking clinical teaching around newborn examination.  He is a board member for the Scottish Cot Death Trust and the Consultant Editor for the British Journal of Midwifery. From an international perspective he has contributed to evidence-based guidance for newborn skin care and taught neonatal nurses in Vietnam.  He has also published numerous peer reviewed articles and contributes to midwifery textbooks including Physiology in Childbearing with his career long mentor and friend Professor Jean Rankin.

Suzanne has been a registered midwife since 1998, with experience of all areas of midwifery practice. She has worked as a midwife, senior midwifery manager and Head of Midwifery in Wales for many years prior to being appointed as Director of Midwifery in 2022.

Suzanne successfully completed her Doctorate of Advanced Healthcare Practice in 2022. Her research explored the experience of pregnant women being offered influenza vaccination in pregnancy. She has a keen interest in public health and supporting vulnerable families. Suzanne is passionate in supporting midwives and support workers to realise their potential through training and development, acknowledging and celebrating achievement. She is a strong advocate for Clinical Supervision for Midwives, embedding the RCM Caring For You Charter supporting partnership working to promote a commitment to provide safe, healthy working environment.

After an early career in clinical nursing and educational research, Helen qualified as a midwife and completed her PhD on the learning experiences of undergraduate nursing students and newly qualified practitioners.

Prior to entering Higher Education, Helen practised as a midwife in hospital and community settings in NHS Grampian. She was seconded as Project Midwife to develop the Scottish Woman-Held Maternity Record (SWHMR), which is used by women and health professionals throughout NHS Scotland.

Helen has extensive experience of delivering and leading midwifery education at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. She has undertaken programme leadership and curriculum development roles for pre-registration midwifery and MScs in midwifery and nursing. She has contributed to the NHS Education for Scotland (NES) funded Maternity Care Assistant preparation programme and has represented midwifery within cross institutional interprofessional education (IPE) initiatives. 

Helen is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and an experienced external examiner for midwifery. Helen is committed to her professional development and has represented the Faculty of Science on the University of York Learning and Teaching Forum Committee. As Lead Midwife for Education and Subject Group Lead for Midwifery Helen leads a collegiate midwifery team within the Department of Health Sciences, and represents midwifery education within and beyond the institution.

Dr Alison Callwood has a background in midwifery, nursing practice and education for health professions spanning 30 years. She gained her Doctor of Philosophy in 2015 at the University of Surrey.

Alison is actively engaged in post-doctoral research exploring admissions to health professions education programmes focusing on ensuing equity. She is member of the Council of Deans for Health Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Strategic Policy Group and UK Medical Schools Council Selection Alliance Multiple Mini Interview (MMI) Expert Group, a Fellow of the Institute for People-Centred Artificial Intelligence (AI) at the University of Surrey and Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Alison has been awarded multiple grants from UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and has orchestrated the design and development of the first known online automated interview (MMI) system with principles of fairness built in.

Her recent work includes exploring the impact AI can bring to recruitment and admissions and how the interface between technology and people can be softened to facilitate equity, inclusivity, and diversity particularly for neurodiverse applicants.

Laura Abbott

In 2018, Dr Laura Abbott was awarded an RCM Fellowship, in the same year as gaining her doctorate in health research, alongside her day job.

Her academic career – which began in 2009 following seven years as a nurse and nine years as a midwife – often focuses on complex social issues and perinatal mental health.

Laura has a particular interest in the experiences of pregnant women in prison. She works with charity Birth Companions and helped write the Birth charter for women in prisons in England and Wales.

Describing herself as resilient, Laura thrives on bouncing back quickly and overcoming challenges. Her research has demonstrated the huge scope to improve policy, care and outcomes for mother and child, particularly marginalised women. Outside work, Laura spends time with her husband and three sons, enjoying the theatre and cinema.

Contact details: [email protected]

Aine Alam is a practising midwife, teacher and researcher, specialising in midwifery-led care, multidisciplinary teamwork and teaching practices that have a work based learning focus. Áine holds qualifications in nursing, midwifery, advanced midwifery practice, clinical teaching and learning, assessor awards and a Cert Ed, Masters in work based learning (WBL). She is currently completing PhD studies about how midwifery teachers move from lecture-led learning to practice based approaches to the teaching and learning of midwifery.

A midwife since 1982 and currently practising in Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust, Áine returned from a three year sabbatical in November 2016 as voluntary Visiting Faculty to The School of Nursing and Midwifery (SONAM) at Aga Khan University Karachi. She was privileged to work with an enthusiastic midwifery teaching team who brought the Bachelor of Midwifery degree for the first time to an Asian country.

In 2014 Áine was awarded an International Fellowship Award from the charity Wellbeing of Women (WOW) in conjunction with the RCM. In 2015 she authored a book titled Teach Don’t Tell: Effective strategies for training midwives, a narrative script that challenges midwifery teachers to teach for ‘real’.

Áine also volunteers as a Learning representative for the RCM, conducting learning events across London and Kent for midwifery colleagues. The RCM (funded by DfiD) have placed Áine four times in Uganda to assist universities with their curriculum development for midwives, influencing how midwives will be taught with the ultimate aim of reducing the vast number of mothers and babies who die in childbirth in developing countries.

Contact details: [email protected]

Annette Briley

Annette qualified as a midwife in 1983 and, after working clinically, including as a midwife-sonographer, she joined the research team at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust in 1997.

She has worked on many single, multicentre, national and international clinical trials. Many of the results have influenced midwifery and obstetric practice improving outcomes for women and babies. Areas of interest include: obesity, GDM, preterm birth, pre-eclampsia, and the development of products to train staff and aid birth. Annette is NIHR specialty lead, NIHR Advocate (Midwifery) NIHR Midwife Champion, and R and D lead for Women’s Services at GSTFT.

She currently manages a team of midwives and others recruiting to over 50 clinical trials. In 2014 Annette completed a PhD looking at risk factors, and their cumulative impact, on blood loss and PPH. Annette is a Trustee of Maternity Worldwide, working to improve the reproductive health and status of women in low resource settings.

Contact details: [email protected]

Tracey has 25 years midwifery experience, working in all areas of midwifery and birth settings. She has held both management and Consultant Midwife roles. She is currently Head of Midwifery at Warrington and Halton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. She has successfully developed both freestanding and alongside midwifery led units and midwifery models of care.

Tracey contributes to guidance and professional policy locally and nationally. She is currently a member of the NICE High Risk Intrapartum Guideline Group. She was a member of the NICE Intrapartum guideline group and the new NICE Intrapartum Standards for Healthy Women and Babies. She is a CQC Specialist Advisor and part of the BJM Editorial Board. She has been working internationally to assist midwives in Bulgaria to develop midwifery-led services in an oppressive medicalised culture.

Tracey gained her PhD in 2011 at University of Central Lancashire, looking at Women and Midwives Perceptions of the Midwife’s Role.

Contact details: [email protected]

You can follow Tracey on Twitter @drtraceyc

Dianne has demonstrated her pioneering of water birth and developed sustainability of what was a novel practice at the time, now a fundamental aspect of midwifery practice and a real choice for women. Her work through clinical practice, education and research has embedded water birth in contemporary practice. Her work is recognised nationally and internationally.

Contact details: [email protected]

In 1974 she commenced her nurse training and quickly realised that her heart lay in midwifery. She has been a midwife for 41 years and has worked in hospital, community, education and research and global midwifery. She was one of the first Consultant Midwives in the UK, specialising in Public Health in Liverpool UK working around all aspects of deprivation and inequalities that affect pregnant women and their families. She was also appointed as National Midwifery Assessor for the Confidential Enquiry into Maternal Deaths.

Her expertise has taken her to the Middle East to establish Midwifery Education and initiate a shared care model to empower the role of the midwife in the UAE which was endorsed by the UAE Government. Grace is currently working at the Aga Khan University as the Foundation Professor for Midwifery Education and Practice, based in Uganda, but working strategically across East Africa. She has always maintained her clinical practice and practices at Kawempe Mulago hospital in Kampala. She is an editorial board member and reviewer for MIDIRS, the Practising Midwife and the International Journal of Childbirth and is a reviewer for Midwifery and Evidence Based Midwifery.

Contact details: [email protected]

Sarah has united her clinical role and her research activity to ensure that women with complex needs are afforded the same support as low risk women. In addition to her UK work Sarah has been active in the RCM Global agenda, she has made positive contributions to developing professionalism of midwifery in Bangladesh.

Contact details: [email protected]

Jenny has been in involved in midwifery for over thirty years. She has been educating all this time, in practice, publication or in higher education. She is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Authority. Her passion is to view families' holistically, including recognising spirituality, and has published widely on these topics. Her Doctor of Education holistic project explored the meaning of being a midwife and the art of midwifery practice, using creative methods, including creating a reflective textile quilt.

She has recently completed research relating to psycho-social/spiritual experience of pregnancy and mental wellbeing, promoting dignity and respect in midwifery education, and the experiences of disabled women. She loves student midwives and getting them to think and telling stories about the 'old days'. She has been involved in developing other educators through running a unit on a Postgraduate certificate for education. She has currently stepped away from formal academia as an independent educator and researcher, undertaking project work for universities and creating educational resources.

She has a very patient husband and five daughters, and a granddaughter, who are her life.

Contact details: [email protected]

Billie Hunter

Billie Hunter CBE, Emerita professor of midwifery at Cardiff University, is internationally esteemed as a researcher and author, particularly for her focus on the emotional work of midwives and their professional resilience. She had lectured across the globe and holds a number of visiting chairs, including at the University of Technology in Sydney, Australia.

A midwife since 1979, and the first RCM professor of midwifery, she has spent the past two decades making an outstanding contribution to the evidence base for midwifery, through research, writing papers, books and presentations, and says she is committed to ‘inspiring and supporting others to do the same’.

She is the former chair of The Iolanthe Midwifery Trust, and founder and chair of the All Wales Midwifery and Reproductive Health Research Forum. Until retirement, Billie was director of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Midwifery Development in Europe, based at Cardiff University. She also helped to set up the RCM oral history archive. In 2018 she was awarded a CBE for her services to midwifery and midwifery education in the UK and Europe.

She says: ‘We know that midwives need to feel valued and cared for themselves in order to provide compassionate and safe care, so we really do need to pay attention to how tough it is for midwives on the ground, and find ways to offer better support.

‘I think it’s my interest in ‘caring for the carer’ that really resonates with other midwives. The ideas for this research originated in clinical practice, and I’ve made sure that I’ve taken the findings back to midwifery education and practice.’

She says becoming one of the RCM’s first fellows was ‘a huge honour’, and adds: ‘I hope that I can use the fellowship to carry on supporting midwives in their invaluable work, and hence improve care for women, babies and families.’

Contact details: [email protected]

Sara is the midwifery lead for 'MBRRACE-UK', which provides essential evidence to challenge practice. In addition to MBRRACE work Sara’s contribution to the increasing evidence base in maternity is extensive, changing and influencing practice as well as supporting midwives and others to continue researching. Her work is recognised nationally and internationally.

Contact details: [email protected]

Julia Magill-CuerdenJulia Magill-Cuerden has worked as a midwife and lecturer in Scotland, Malawi, New Zealand and England for over 50 years. She has been committed to the development of midwifery education and was responsible for introducing curriculum innovations, including the first midwifery degree. She was clinically involved in the quality of care through the role of Supervisor of Midwives. Through her writing and reviewing, Julia has promoted the quality of midwifery and nursing publications and encouraged others to do the same. Having obtained a PhD in 2002 she has supported midwives in research and higher degrees. She was awarded a National Teaching Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy and Emeritus Scholar of the University of West London.

The honour goes to Julia in recognition of the fact that her professional achievement, scholarship and leadership have made an exceptional contribution to promoting and advancing midwifery.

Contact details: [email protected]

Amanda is an established midwifery leader, with core values of compassion, inclusion and collaboration.

She has been a consultant midwife throughout several hospitals, and the London Ambulance Service where she was the responsible maternity lead for urgent and emergency maternity care.

Throughout her midwifery career, her focus has been on safe, kind, and compassionate care. She has undertaken commissioned maternity reviews regarding safety and learning and has experience as an expert witness and maintain my clinical practice as a midwife.

Throughout her professional career, she has sought to listen to women’s experiences of care, learn, and use this to inform ongoing development of responsive maternity care.

Amanda is a fellow of the Royal College of Midwives and was awarded the Chief Midwifery Officer’s Gold award for implementing improvements to the care pregnant women receive.

In 2022 she received an MBE for services to Midwifery.

You can contact her at [email protected]

Contact details: [email protected]

Jayne Marshall

Jayne was appointed as the Foundation Professor of Midwifery and Lead Midwife for Education at the University of Leicester in 2017 tasked with establishing a critical mass of midwifery talent and pioneering an innovative 4-year undergraduate pre-registration Master in Science (MSci) Midwifery with Leadership programme for aspiring leaders of the midwifery profession. The first cohort completed their studies in 2022. Currently Jayne is Deputy Head of the School of Healthcare and the School’s Director of Education.

Jayne trained as a nurse at Guys Hospital, London and undertook midwifery training at Kings College Hospital London, moving into midwifery education early in her career.  Her first academic role was at the University of Nottingham where she held a variety of teaching and leadership roles and was a recipient of a Lord Dearing Award for her outstanding achievement in enhancing the student learning experience. In 2013, Jayne won the Royal College of Midwives Annual Johnson’s Baby Award for excellence in midwifery education.

Jayne took up appointment as the Head of the School of Midwifery at Kingston University and St Georges University of London in 2014 and in 2016, was promoted to Associate Dean for Practice Education and Workforce Development within the Faculty of Health and Social Care and subsequently became the first Professor of Midwifery at Kingston and St Georges.

Recognised as a national and international academic leader, Jayne has made substantial contributions to the development of midwifery education and received a Gold Medal Award for midwifery excellence from the Chief Midwifery Officer for England in 2022. She was a member of the Council of Deans of Health Midwifery Advisory Board that informed the NMC (2019) Future Midwife Standards and coaches students undertaking the Council of Deans’ Student Leadership Programme.  Jayne is also a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and an Aurora Role Model and mentor for the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education. 

Jayne is an educator member of one of the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) recently formed Regional Professional Committees (Europe) and is a member of the ICM’s Research Advisory Network. Jayne’s PhD research explored intrapartum informed consent and subsequently her research interests have focused on pedagogical research in midwifery.

With a substantial publishing history, Jayne is also co-editor of the seminal textbook for midwives, Myles Textbook for Midwives, which is sold in over 75 countries and has been adapted for use in Sub-Saharan Africa and translated into Korean and Greek.

Contact details: [email protected]


Comfort Momoh

Comfort Momoh has dedicated her professional life to helping survivors of FGM and works tirelessly to eradicate the practice.

An FGM public health specialist at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust in London, and a visiting lecturer at a number of prominent institutions, including King’s College London, her expertise is world renowned. She has been invited to speak at the first US summit on FGM in Washington DC in December, and at the 31st ICM Triennial Congress in Canada next year.

Comfort has advised London councils, government departments and the WHO on FGM issues, and travels extensively in African countries to raise awareness. In 2008, she received an MBE for services to women’s health.

A pioneer in her field, she founded the first African Well Woman’s Clinic at St Thomas’ Hospital back in 1997, dedicated to caring for women affected by FGM.

‘I started many years ago when people didn’t even want to talk about it,’ she says. ‘Now the work we have done, and others too, has brought it to the forefront, and made it a safe environment for survivors to come out and talk about their own experiences, and that’s very powerful.’

Training midwives and other healthcare professionals, mentoring students and colleagues are all part of her work, which she happily admits goes way beyond the nine to five. ‘I don’t mind that – this is my passion,’ she adds.

‘It’s very important that as health professionals, we know our roles and responsibilities in terms of safeguarding girls and women who might be at risk.

‘For me, it’s about impacting communities, reaching out to them, changing attitudes and mindsets, which you can’t do overnight. But I would like to see FGM end in one generation if possible.’

She says she hopes the RCM fellowship will help her advocate for women and girls, and ‘give a voice to the voiceless’.

Contact details: [email protected]

Gergana Nikolova

Gergana Nikolova, a senior midwife at Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust in Surrey, was recognised for her work with vulnerable women and for improving care and access to services for black, asian and minority ethnic (BAME) mothers.

A midwife for over 20 years, she has also published widely and is a columnist for the biggest maternity journal in Bulgaria.

Her latest project is a pioneering online pregnancy information programme for BAME groups translated into Urdu, for which she was awarded the prestigious Mary Seacole Award and Scholarship for 2015-2016.

Gergana has been invited to speak at ministerial meetings about her work, and will present the project at the ICM congress too next year.

‘We started with Urdu, but we’re nowhere near finished developing it,’ she says. ‘We recognise there are many other languages we need to use in order to support as many mums as we can, and make the service available and understandable to them.’

‘Each project leads to something bigger and bigger,’ she adds, with her thoughts now turning to the creation of a guide for BAME mothers on how to navigate maternity services.

Gergana says she applied for the fellowship to show others that ‘you can step up and achieve. If you work and have good ideas, and if you are brave enough, you can do whatever you want to.’

Describing it as ‘an honour, a commitment and a responsibility,’ she adds: ‘It is a platform for me to inspire the next generation of midwives, to promote and better our services, and to be an ambassador for the great service that we have in the UK.

‘My work is my passion and this gives me a chance to work even harder.’

Contact details: [email protected]

Julia is renowned for her research and broad midwifery expertise.  The impact of her research and how it has improved the lives of women and their babies is clear, something which is supported by an excellent record of dissemination of the research findings in order to reach a wide audience, particularly midwives. She has demonstrated innovative approaches to research in women’s health and her work has contributed to midwifery knowledge and influences practice.

Contact details: [email protected]

Denise Tiran

Denise is a midwifery lecturer and internationally renowned authority on midwifery complementary therapies. Previously, at the University of Greenwich, she developed a BSc (Hons) degree in Complementary Therapies and established a specialist antenatal clinic where she treated almost 6,000 women. The clinic was “highly commended” in the 2001 Prince of Wales’ Awards for Healthcare in London.

In 2004 Denise established her own education company, Expectancy, providing a unique range of RCM-accredited courses for midwives and business mentoring for midwives wanting to work in private practice. She has taught almost 3,000 midwives in the UK and overseas and is a frequent international conference speaker.

Denise has a strong commitment to safety and professional accountability in relation to complementary therapies. She has undertaken several research studies and published widely, including Aromatherapy in Midwifery Practice (2016), Complementary Therapies in Pregnancy and Childbirth (2018) and The Business of Maternity Care (2018). She has edited several editions of Bailliere’s Midwives’ Dictionary and revised the RCM’s Position Paper on complementary therapies. Denise is also Associate Editor for the Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice journal.

Contact details: [email protected]

Susan Way

Susan believes that throughout her career she has been fortunate enough to be able to join two of her early ambitions, namely midwifery and education. Susan has recently retired having worked for over 40 years’ in practice, education, regulation and research.

Susan spent eight years employed at the NMC working on a variety of projects including developing standards for education and practice. She gained her PhD in 2007 at Bournemouth University and returned to working in education in 2009 taking up the role of Lead Midwife for Education and had the honour of leading the UK-wide LME Executive for several years. She has also been a member of the RCM Board and elected as Chair during her term of office. Her achievements in midwifery education have been recognised by AdvancedHE with Susan being awarded the title of National Teaching Fellow. Susan was Professor of Midwifery Education by the time she retired from Bournemouth University and is now looking forward to what life has to offer as she begins a new chapter in her life.

A fellowship was also awarded to Birmingham Women’s NHS Foundation Trust midwife Sara Webb, which, in particular, recognises her work in childbirth-related perineal trauma.

Sara, who has combined research with clinical work throughout her career, was awarded an NIHR Clinical Doctoral Research Fellowship in 2013 to pursue her women-centred, midwifery-led research in this area. She was also awarded an MPhil in 2010 for her research into the accuracy of abdominal palpation.

As a specialist perineal midwife, her work has included setting up a one-stop shop for obstetric anal sphincter injuries, and running perineal clinics for women after they have given birth.

She has formed a network with other specialist perineal midwives around the UK and in Spain, sharing knowledge and collaborating on research, and is helping to set up a charity for mothers with anal sphincter injuries from childbirth, which is due to launch next year.

She describes her approach to midwifery as ‘putting women first in patient care, by hearing what concerns them have and the information they really want, rather than those we think they want.’

And she is passionate about changing the perception that research ‘is solely in the realm of academics’.

She says: ‘We are autonomous practitioners; everything we do should have evidence to support it. Where there isn’t a lot of evidence to support the work we do, we need to fill that void.

‘If I can do it, as a normal shop-floor midwife, so can you. If you have the research idea, go out and get some funding and do it – find the evidence and use it to improve care.’

She adds: ‘For me, knowledge should be shared and people should be supported to develop – that’s my passion – helping others see their ideas through, and I hope the fellowship will help me do that.’

Contact details: [email protected]

Marion Wilyman

Marion qualified as a midwife in 1983 and now works part-time in the community for Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals. She has vast international experience which has given her valuable insight in all aspects of midwifery in different and diverse communities in a number of countries in the world such as the Caribbean, Australia, Scotland and the Netherlands. Her experience as a Sure Start Midwife taught her a great deal regarding the benefits of multidisciplinary working in the community setting, especially with vulnerable women, she has published several papers on the subject.

She has an MSc in Women’s Health and has published findings on midwives’ experiences of home birth transfers. Together with her colleagues she improved the home birth service for the trust. This won the prestigious RCM award for better births in 2016. Since then there has been the launch of the first Midwifery Hub in the South East with an opening ceremony featuring Harriet Warner, co-author of the successful ‘Call the midwife’ series.

Contact details: [email protected]

Juliet qualified as a Nurse in 1993 and received a BSc (Hons) in Midwifery from Thames Valley University in 1996. Prior to this she obtained a BA (Hons) in Latin American Politics from Essex University.

Juliet worked as a 1-1 Midwife from 1997 to 2000. She has worked in many different areas over the years including as a Community Midwife, Birth Centre Midwife and Sure Start Midwife and has supported women during numerous homebirths and water births. She is an IBCLC and she set up (in 2012) and now runs the Complex Breastfeeding and Tongue Tie assessment clinic at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust.

From 2003 Juliet began campaigning to improve services for women with Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). In 2007 she set up a community-based clinic, the Acton African Well Woman Centre, for non-pregnant women with FGM.

The service offered same-day deinfibulation under local anaesthetic, women could self-refer as there were no geographical boundaries, and they pioneered a unique model of care: - co-locating a Somali-speaking Health Advocate and specialist trauma Counsellor into clinic consultations. The service won a Guardian Public Service Award in Diversity and Equality in 2011.

Dr Alys Einion-Waller, Associate Professor of Midwifery at Swansea University, teaches midwifery, maternity care, research methods, gender and women’s studies, and is an equalities activist and a researcher in the fields of midwifery, narrative, gender, equalities and feminism.

Her passion for midwifery stems from her unwavering belief in the power and capability of women and childbearing persons, and she advocates for the autonomy of pregnant and birthing people tirelessly. Her co-edited book, Bearing the Weight of the World: Exploring Maternal Embodiment was published in 2018.

Alys loves to write, publishing extensively, and she now works to support colleagues, student midwives and others to publish. She runs Centred Birth Hypnobirthing classes and practitioner courses. She loves to read, to cook and to travel. She lives between the mountains and the sea, is married to a librarian, has three dogs, one cat, three sons, a campervan and a house full of books.

Sarah Chitongo is a Nurse and Midwife with 18 years of experience in all areas of Midwifery. She is also an experienced Senior Manager who left the National Health Service as Midwifery Manager. Sarah is also a Specialist Advisor to the American Pregnancy Association. She is an ambitious manager who has built a reputation developing and motivating staff. The management style focuses on three main things; innovation, quality and staff. Currently she is a Midwifery Educator and providing consultancy for academics and also Manager of the Clinical Skills Department to ensure the needs of the school align with the strategic goals of the university as well as generating and presenting annual management review reports.

Sarah soared to great heights by winning the Mary Seacole Awards and becoming a Queens Nurse. Her work has featured in BBC., Reuters News and CNN as well as speaking in Parliament and getting her work incorporated into the manifesto. She will also be visiting the Prime Minister to further discuss this. She is also the force behind embedding augmented reality in midwifery education at Middlesex University which was the first in the country to utilise this. This work has since featured in over 8 countries internationally.

Grace Thomas

Grace Thomas is a Reader in Midwifery at Cardiff University. She is the Lead Midwife for Education & Professional Head and Deputy Director of the World Health Organisation Collaborating Centre for Midwifery Development – one of only two WHOCCs specifically for midwifery in the world. With experience of working in Oman and Namibia, Grace co-led the development of a Midwifery Assessment Tool for Education (MATE), published by WHO EURO in May 2020. Grace is on the editorial board of the European Journal of Midwifery and is a Trustee of the Iolanthe Midwifery Trust.

A Midwife for over 30 years, Grace moved into academia after working across a variety of clinical and managerial roles and as Consultant Midwife for 10 years. She is passionate to enable student midwives to gain research-based knowledge, skills, professionalism, and confidence to safely and compassionately support women and their families to achieve a positive birth experience.

Carmel Lloyd

Carmel has 40 years’ experience in midwifery practice, education and regulation. Her latest remit was to lead the delivery of the RCM strategy and professional activity for education and learning for members of the College, this included our leadership strategy and the strategy for research and development. She also led on advising internal and external stakeholders on regulatory matters and midwifery regulation as well as the education, training and career development of midwives and maternity support workers.

Carmel has extensive experience in healthcare policy and professional regulation; strategic leadership; the role of professional associations/organisations; standard setting, midwifery regulation including revalidation, fitness to practise and the supervision of midwives; midwifery practice including medicines management and midwives exemptions; pre and post registration midwifery education; midwifery careers including continuing professional development and lifelong learning.

Carmel was a member of the RCM Expert Clinical Advisory Group (ECAG) and the RCM Editorial Lead for Midwives, the magazine of the RCM and she was a member of a number of external working and advisory groups for the NMC, Health Education England and NHS England/Improvement.

Dr Sally Pezaro is an academic midwife, research associate and hearings panellist for the Nursing and Midwifery Council’s Investigating Committee. Sally has clinical midwifery experience working in the United Kingdom, the Gambia and Ethiopia. Dr Pezaro has developed a passion for promoting the wellbeing of midwives and excellence in care, where her research remains challenge led.

Dr Pezaro is also a proud steering group member of the Mary Seacole Awards programme, benefitting and improving the health outcomes of people from black and minority ethnic communities.

As an editorial board member of the Midwives Information and Resource Service (MIDIRS), Evidence Based Midwifery, the British Journal of Midwifery and the International Journal of Childbirth, Dr Pezaro is eager to ensure that teaching remains research inspired. This vision has led to the co-creation of a Research Inspired Online/Offline Teaching (RIOT) framework to be showcased in new curriculum strategies.

In 2019, Dr Pezaro was honoured with a first prize award from the Royal Society of Medicine in 'Leading and Inspiring Excellence in Maternity Care' and was also runner-up for the British Journal of Midwifery's 'Midwife of the Year' 2019.

Nafiza is a Nurse Midwife with over 25 years experience across a wide range of health-related issues. She qualified as a Nurse in 1989 and went on to complete her midwifery in 2000 from City University London. She has worked in various roles as a clinician , educationalist, management, service improvement and project management . She has developed a strong passion for inequalities of healthcare and is driven to influence and initiate change in the health systems not just in the UK but in the developing world too. In pursuit of her passion she completed a Public Health MSc, secured a scholarship with DFID, and worked as a project manager for Women’s health projects in South Asia.

Her passion for inequalities led to her Co Founding the Association of South Asian Midwives. The aim of which is to set about improving maternity services for women and families who use the service as well as those providing the service and focusing on the barriers that are faced by these minoritised communities.

Nafiza is also a panel member for MBRRACE-UK perinatal confidential enquiry and is a member of the East of England Task and Finish group: Ethnic Minority and Neonatal Staff development . She is also part of the Men and Diversity in Midwifery: National Equity and Equality Steering Group with the aim to provide equity for women and babies in maternity within the NHS and embed equality for all staff. She has been a consultant volunteer with the Bangladesh RCM Twinning project over the last few years providing mentorship support to the young midwifery leaders as well as providing support to the Bangladesh Midwifery Society.

Nina is a registered nurse and a midwife with international working experience. Nina has extensive experience in clinical practice, operational, management, research, quality improvement and co-production. Nina has worked across acute and primary care Trusts and has held a number of senior midwifery leadership positions.

Nina has acted as a midwifery advisor on several NICE guidelines and is the immediate past President of the Royal Society of Medicine, Maternity and Newborn Forum. She was the midwifery lead in the Lambeth Early Action Partnership (LEAP), a 10-year programme funded by BIG Lottery Fulfilling Lives; Better Start, tackling the health inequalities in early years (0-4), through a transformational strategy and public health approach by shifting resources to early intervention whilst working in partnership with women and their families. She has been shortlisted for the Royal College of Midwives national Awards for partnership working and innovative practices on several occasions and won the award in 2008 for developing a community-based multi-agency postnatal care & early parenting programme.

Nina is also a member of Kings Health Partner and Applied Research Collaboration South London and has contributed to several research publications. She has a particular interest in obesity in pregnancy and health literacy and is currently undertaking a PhD in this field.

Benash is a midwife, mentor, assistant professor of midwifery, an early career researcher and winner of the Ground-breaking researcher award at the BAME Health & Care awards 2022. She is passionate about addressing health inequalities & invested in improving maternity services for those we care for and those who work in them.

She has co-designed and runs Cultural Competency and Safety Workshops for maternity Health care professionals. This successful course has been used as a case study of good practice for the NHS Equity and Equality Guidance for Local Maternity Systems, September 2021.

As Chair & director of Sheffield Maternity Cooperative she is working to provide alternative spaces for advocacy, support and safe spaces for black and brown communities.

She co-found The Association of South Asian Midwives (ASAM), they work to support marginalised midwives & raise awareness of barriers faced by diverse communities.

Benash is also the Co-Chair for the Racial Injustice in UK Maternity Services Inquiry by Birth Rights Charity.

She is a specialist advisor with CQC for Midwifery, Leadership, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion. She is also on the MBRRACE-UK Perinatal Confidential Enquiry Panel Member & a trustee for the Iolanthe Midwifery Trust.

National Matenity Lead for Equality NHS England and NHS Improvement. Professional Midwifery Advocate in a large NHS trust.

Wendy has strong self-belief values, personal development, philanthropy, mentoring, supporting others, just as passionately promoting and advocacy for equalities among black and minority ethnic groups.

Wendy is a registered nurse and midwife with more than two decades of active, fruitful and broadened years of service in the community and public health. The recognition and influence of her abilities reach, influence and touch several spheres within and outside the United Kingdom. Wendy is well seasoned in articulating and participating in diverse roles involving the hospital, community, private health, and well-being. She is very passionate about supporting and empowering nurses and midwives to provide culturally sensitive and holistic care for women and their families.

Ms Olayiwola received her academic Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Nursing from Buckinghamshire Chiltern University UK; BSc (Hons.) Midwifery City University London with further studies, she obtained a merited diploma in Management and Leadership Studies (DMS) and postgraduate (MSc) degree in Public Health at the University of East London. She is an honorary lecturer at universities on Public health topics and a motivational speaker.

She has co-authored articles in professional midwifery journals, including Talking to men about FG M and Reducing the incidence of Stillbirths in Black women. Wendy is a member of Nursing and Midwifery Council Equality Diversity and Inclusion Research Advisory Group. She is the Lead midwife/co-chair of CNO CMiDO BME Strategic Advisory Group NHS England.

Wendy was awarded a British Empire Medal for service to the NHS and Equality during the COVID-19 response in the 2021 New year's Honour list. She was listed in the 2020 year of then nurse and midwife Global WHO/UN/WGH100 outstanding women nurse and midwife leader. She is the winner of the NHS@70 women leadersAward2018.

Hora leads the Maternal and Infant Health Research theme which includes several interdisciplinary researchers and PhD students in Sheffield Hallam University. With over 100 peer reviewed publications and a similar number of conference presentations; she is an internationally recognised figure in her area of research.

Hora was listed in the Elsevier top 2% cited scientists in her field in 2020 with a field adjusted impact of 2.4 according to SciVal 2021. She has also been acting as Editor/Senior Editorial Board Member for journals (e.g. BMC Pregnancy & Childbirth) and an expert advisor for organisations such as WHO and Public Health England.

Her research is of a collaborative nature, focusing on care models reducing health inequalities for mothers and babies from the most disadvantaged and vulnerable backgrounds specifically related to maternal nutrition and obesity, infant feeding, perinatal mental health, adolescent pregnancy and migration. Hora was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s new year honour list (Dec 2020) for her services to higher education and impact on maternal and infant health, guiding maternity policy development at national and international levels.

Have you considered applying for an RCM Fellowship?

RCM fellows are recognised as leaders, ambassadors, innovators and role models who will have an important part to play in shaping the future of midwifery.

As a Fellow of the RCM (FRCM) you will be:

  • An ambassador for midwives and the RCM
  • A role model for peers and colleagues
  • Able to showcase your experience and expertise and promote the profession of midwifery
  • Recognised and appreciated within your organisation
  • Have the opportunity to contribute to future developments and initiatives in midwifery at national and international level

Please visit our How to Apply page for further information.