Meet the Midwives

Photo credit:  Shaw Photography Co

Photo credit: Shaw Photography Co

Maura Winkler, CNM, IBCLC

Originally from the Buffalo, New York area, Maura Winkler moved to Chicago to pursue a medical degree but quickly discovered that the medical model of care of women did not match her personal values and philosophies. She left medical school and immediately began her path to becoming a certified nurse midwife (CNM) at University of Illinois at Chicago. 

Maura believes strongly in the midwifery model of care--namely that women and their health care team are shared decision makers. She is a strong proponent of informed decision-making and consent and views women as experts in their own bodies. While midwives in the United States are primarily known as providers of care during pregnancy and childbirth, women of all life stages can benefit from the care of a midwife.

Throughout her work as a birth and postpartum doula for six years as owner of Chicago Birth & Baby, Maura supported women & families through all types of labor & birth experiences in both hospital and out of hospital settings. Maura's training as a student midwife at West Suburban's Alternative Birth Centerjust outside of Chicago in Oak Park, Illinois solidified her interest in low intervention birth in the hospital setting. She collaborated in writing the Mama Natural Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancyas well as the Mama Natural Birth Course. She has supported hundreds of breastfeeding women as a board certified lactation consultant (IBCLC) and Breastfeeding USA Counselor. Maura founded Fika Midwifery in 2017.

Maura also has experience supporting women through reproductive choices such as pregnancy options counseling, birth control & contraception, and providing women with empowering routine gynecological care.

Maura lives in the Elmwood Village area with her husband and two children. Not surprisingly, she loves indulging in fair trade, local coffee as well as sponge candy and local microbrews. You might see her running around the neighborhood, loving her old Victorian home, or spending time at local restaurants and the Bidwell Farmer's Market.

Photo credit:  Shaw Photography Co

Photo credit: Shaw Photography Co

Lydia Doublestein, CM, CLC

While in her homestate of Michigan, Lydia Doublestein pursued an undergraduate degree in Public Health with an emphasis on maternal/child health and community development.  Along the way, Lydia discovered that becoming a midwife would be her next step, so she moved to Brooklyn, NY where she obtained her Master of Science in Midwifery from the SUNY Downstate Medical Center.  

While studying midwifery, Lydia worked as a birth assistant at the Brooklyn Birthing Center, the oldest free-standing birth center in New York.  Working as a birth assistant built upon the public health knowledge and gave her practical experience witnessing normal, physiological labor/birth and providing direct care to families seeking this alternative.  Lydia also has experience providing labor support as a doula and facilitating lactation as a Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC). 

After becoming a Certified Midwife (CM), Lydia continued working at the Brooklyn Birthing Center as a midwife fellow.  She also worked as an assistant midwife at homebirths with Kimm Sun and Takiya Ballard.  Through providing care with families in low-intervention settings, she has developed a strong passion for holding space during the birthing experience so that she can witness the power of women to labor and bring life into the world.

Lydia believes that being a midwife is a commitment and responsibility. It is a commitment to providing reliable, responsible care that gives dignity and respect to individuals and families from all walks of life. It is a responsibility to guide and guard those who are seeking a midwife’s care - be it for gynecologic services, preconception counsel, care during childbearing, postpartum and/or newborn care.

Lydia lives on the Lower West Side of Buffalo and can often be found frequenting local coffee shops and biking around the city.  She also enjoys backpacking, discovering new places, and brewing her own kombucha.


Carolyn Protter, CNM

Carolyn Protter's introduction to midwifery came at the age of two when she witnessed the home water birth of her younger sister attended by two wonderful lay midwives. She learned firsthand the impact that empowering midwifery care can have on individuals and families and realized as a teenager that this was her calling.

After getting her bachelors degree in biology and working as a DONA certified doula, Carolyn attended Yale University to become a certified nurse-midwife. She trained in the birth center and hospital setting in addition to working as a nurse and birth assistant at the Connecticut Childbirth and Women's Center. Her training reaffirmed her love for out-of-hospital birth while also giving her experience with many different settings and models of care.

Carolyn believes it is a privilege to be trusted by people to provide care as their midwife. This trust comes with a duty to practice in a way that is respectful, safe, compassionate, and empowering. She believes strongly in the midwifery model of care and informed consent and views herself as a true partner with her clients.

Originally from Hawaii, Carolyn will be moving to Buffalo with her husband and two cats. She can often be found with a knitting project in her hands or rereading Harry Potter. In her free time, she and her husband enjoy exploring local restaurants and traveling to new countries.