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Partnering to Support Healthy Moms and Babies in Baltimore and Beyond: Celebrating 10 Years of B’More for Healthy Babies

A virtual conference series to share the success of B'more for Healthy Babies

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Welcome from Dr. Letitia Dzirasa, Commissioner of Health, Baltimore City Health Department

In the decade since its creation, B’more for Healthy Babies (BHB) has impacted the lives of many families in Baltimore. The initiative brings together policymakers, service providers, community organizations, and residents to strategically allocate resources and streamline communication at all levels of the maternal and child health system so that every baby might have the best possible start.

This virtual event series reviewed the success of B’more for Healthy Babies, outlined the goals for the program moving forward, and gathered strategies and enhanced momentum for building organizational capacity to implement community-based research to improve maternal and child health outcomes. Learn more about the speakers.



Pre-session : An Introduction to the Work of B'more for Healthy Babies

In this introduction to the series, Assistant Commissioner for the Bureau of Maternal & Child Health at Baltimore City Health Department, Rebecca Dineen, gave a brief overview of disparities in infant mortality in Baltimore, the B'more for Healthy Babies Program's impact so far, and their vision for the next ten years of supporting the health of children and families in the community. Learn more about Baltimore City Health Department's partnership with BHB. Download the slides (PDF).


Virtual Session 1: Enhancing Local Partnerships: Community Engagement and Impact
October 7, 2020
5 - 6:30 p.m. ET

Community partnerships have been key to the success of the B’More for Healthy Babies (BHB) initiative. Engaging community members to identify specific needs and develop outreach strategies has enhanced the initiative’s ability to reach those who would most benefit from the services delivered to expectant mothers, new parents, and infants. Download the slides (PDF).


Pamela Bohrer Brown
Director, Maternal and Child Health and Multicultural Programs
Baltimore Medical System

Quant'e Boulware
Cutt Styles Unisex Barbershop

Lucia Islas
President, Comité Latino de Baltimore
Community Outreach Specialist, Centro Sol

Stacey Stephens, LCSW-C
Director, B'more for Healthy Babies Upton/Druid Heights 
University of Maryland School of Social Work


Tisha Edwards, MSW, JD
Executive Director, Mayor’s Office of Children & Family Success
City of Baltimore


Virtual Session 2: A Decade of Progress: Examining B’More for Healthy Babies Program Outcomes
October 14, 2020
5 - 6:30 p.m. ET

This session introduced the B’More for Healthy Babies (BHB) initiative and highlighted the citywide programs and services that it offers. To illustrate the impact BHB has had over the past decade, speakers presented research and evaluation findings related to birth outcomes in Baltimore. Learn more about BHB's programs in Promise Heights. Download the slides (PDF).


Amy Bopp, MSW
Project Director,  Professional Development
Family League of Baltimore

Traci Kodeck, MPH 
HealthCare Access Maryland

Wendy Gwirtzman Lane, MD, MPH
Clinical Associate Professor
Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Department of Pediatrics
University of Maryland School of Medicine

Amber C. Summers, PhD, RDN, CHES
Senior Program Officer
Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs


Cathy L. Costa, MSW, MPH
Director of Strategic Initiatives, Maternal and Child Health
Baltimore City Health Department


Virtual Session 3: Social Mobilization to Drive Change
October 21, 2020
5 - 6:30 p.m. ET

This session recognized the importance of community involvement in improving birth outcomes and provided examples of ways that seeking out and addressing stakeholder input has led to change. Speakers highlighted examples of how the work of B’More for Healthy Babies has changed as a result of empowering the community voice. Download the slides (PDF).


Keyonna Green
Community Advisory Board
B'more for Healthy Babies

Giselle Joseph
Community Outreach Worker, Promise Heights
B’More for Healthy Babies Upton-Druid Heights

Tina Suliman, MSPH
Communications Associate
Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs


Amber C. Summers, PhD, RDN, CHES
Senior Program Officer
Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs


Virtual Session 4: The Path Forward: Sustainability for Future Impact
October 28, 2020
5 - 6:30 p.m. ET

Following earlier sessions that introduced the objectives of the B’More for Healthy Babies (BHB) initiative and its outcomes, this final panel celebrated the progress achieved from the first 10 years and identified challenges and opportunities that exist to move the program into the next decade. Panelists discussed ways that BHB, its funders, and partners could approach the future with community needs and perspectives front and center. In our current climate, who ensures that large systems center the community?


Alison G. Brown, MPH, BSN
Interim President, UMMC Downtown Campus
President, UMMC Midtown Campus

Shelly Choo, MD, MPH
Director, Maternal and Child Health Bureau
Maryland Department of Health

Demaune Millard
Chief Executive Officer
Family League of Baltimore

Christopher Thomaskutty
Senior Vice President, Physician Enterprise
Mercy Health Services

Maria Harris Tildon, JD
Executive Vice President for Marketing, Government Affairs
CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield


Terry Staudenmaier
Senior Program Officer for Health & Human Services
Abell Foundation


Virtual Exhibit: Student Posters

Attitudes, Influencers, Subjective Norms, and Challenges among Breastfeeding Mothers in Baltimore City
Talia Kozlowski, MD, MPH is a 2019 graduate of the University of Maryland School of Medicine and Master's in Public Health Program. She worked with BHB Upton/Druid Heights (U/DH) in completing her MPH Capstone project. She is currently a 2nd year resident in Pediatrics at the University of Maryland Medical Center.

Engaging Barbers as Peer Educators for Smoking Cessation
Arif Mahmud, MBBS, MSc, DrPH is a recent graduate of the Doctoral Program in Public Health at Morgan State University. He received his medical degree in his native Bangladesh, conducted community-based research there, and obtained a master's degree in International Health before coming to the United States. He completed his practicum and dissertation work with BHB U/DH.

Psychosocial Predictors of Health and Unhealthy Interpregnancy Intervals
Ruth Young, MD is a 2017 graduate of the University of Maryland School of Medicine. She worked with BHB U/DH as part of the medical student research requirement between her first and second years of medical school. She is currently a Psychiatry resident at the University of Maryland Medical Center.

This series is made possible through funding from The Patrick and Catherine Weldon Donaghue Medical Research Foundation.

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