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The Texas Collaborative for Healthy Mothers and Babies is governed by an Executive Committee, which oversees four subcommittees:

  • Neonatal: The Neonatal Subcommittee works to reduce infant mortality and morbidity through partnership with Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICUs) and health care practitioners throughout the state of Texas.
  • Obstetrics: The Obstetrics Subcommittee aims to improve the quality of maternal-fetal care through the design of quality improvement projects and partnership with obstetric (OB) care providers for implementation.
  • Community Health: The Community Health Subcommittee works to improve the health of Texas mothers and babies through awareness, education, and services at the community level.
  • Data: The Data Subcommittee will create the data infrastructure and relations with hospitals to support and drive quality improvement projects.

The Executive Committee currently has 17 members, led by a Chair and Vice Chair.  Five are representatives of the March of Dimes, Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS), Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC), Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, and The University of Texas System Administration. Two members serve as At Large Members, while the Co-Chairs of the four Subcommittees are also on the Executive Committee.   They lead TCHMB and determine the direction of its work.

Executive Committee


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George Saade, MD
Chair, TCHMB
Professor, Obstetrics & Gynecology, and Cell Biology
Chief of Obstetrics and Maternal Fetal Medicine
Director, Perinatal Research Division
University of Texas Medical Branch

George Saade, MD, is Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Chief of Obstetrics, and the Director of the Maternal-Fetal Medicine Division at The University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB).   His basic science research focuses on preterm labor and Preeclampsia, the two most important causes of maternal and perinatal mortality and morbidity, as well as fetal programming of adult Diseases.  He was the first to describe a novel treatment for twin-twin transfusion syndrome, a uniformly fatal condition if untreated. Saade is currently the principal investigator on 2 NIH-funded clinical research networks, the Stillbirth Collaborative Research Network and the Maternal Fetal Medicine Units Network. Saade is the director of the Perinatal Research Division, a large group of research staff, scientists, and students who are involved in several basic and clinical research studies. He is a member of the editorial boards of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Gynecologic and Obstetric Investigation, and Fetal Diagnosis and Therapy, and is the Editor-in-Chief of the American Journal of Perinatology.  He is currently the chairperson for the Endocrinology, Metabolism, Nutrition, and Reproductive Sciences Small Business Activities [SBIR/STTR] Special Emphasis Panel and for the NICHD Obstetrics and Maternal-Fetal Biology Subcommittee.

 


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Michael Speer, MD
Vice Chair/Chair Elect, TCHMB
Professor of Pediatrics and Neonatology
Baylor College of Medicine
Medical Director, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Program
Texas Children's Hospital

Michael E. Speer, MD, of Houston, is a full-time neonatologist and medical director of the Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Program at Texas Children’s Hospital, and professor of pediatrics and ethics at Baylor College of Medicine. Dr. Speer graduated from Baylor in 1968 and completed his residency in pediatrics and fellowship in neonatal-perinatal medicine at the same institution. He is board certified in pediatrics and neonatal-perinatal medicine and has been practicing medicine for 37 years. His academic interests include infectious diseases of the newborn and the measurement of quality of care. Dr. Speer has served as president of the Houston Academy of Medicine (1994), as well as president of the Texas Medical Association (TMA).


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Charleta Guillory, MD, MPH
Neonatal Subcommittee Co-Chair
Associate Professor of Pediatrics-Newborn
Baylor College of Medicine
Director, Neonatal-Perinatal Public Health Program
Texas Children's Hospital

Charleta Guillory, MD, MPH, FAAP, is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics in the Section of Neonatology at Baylor College of Medicine and Director of the Texas Children's Hospital Neonatal-Perinatal Public Health Program. Her primary research focus addresses the issue of decreasing infant mortality and morbidity. Guillory presently serves as Chair of the Texas Department of State Health Services Newborn Screening Advisory Committee and as Co-Chair of the Texas Collaborative for Healthy Mother and Babies (TCHMB)-Neonatology Section. In addition, she serves on the Texas Health and Human Services Perinatal Advisory Council designating levels of neonatal and maternal care; as Chair of the March of Dimes State Prematurity Campaign; and Chair of the March of Dimes State Advocacy and Government Affairs Committee. Guillory was one of six physicians nationally to receive the Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Fellows Award from The Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences for Outstanding Health Science Professionals. She was recently appointed to the American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Federal Government Affairs – Access to Care and the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) Neonatal Advisory Committee.


Nancy Hurst, PhD, RN, IBCLC
Neonatal Subcommittee Co-Chair
Director, Women's Support Services, Texas Children's Hospital

Dr. Hurst received her BSN, MSN and PhD from the University of Texas, School of Nursing, Houston. As director of the Women Support Services at Texas Children's Hospital Pavilion for Women, she oversees clinical, operational and research activities for the Lactation/Milk Bank services and Patient Education program. Her expertise in breastfeeding and lactation management for mothers of hospitalized infants has led to clinical and research projects designed to improve patient outcomes. She served as the project leader for the hospital’s Baby Friendly Hospital designation which was achieved in February 2016. She currently holds an adjunct faculty position at the University of Texas School of Nursing in Houston. Her research has included various topics in breastfeeding and lactation, specifically related to human milk feeding and breastfeeding in the neonatal intensive care setting. She supports the Texas Collaborative for Healthy Mothers and Babies and serves as a member of the NICU-Breastfeeding Learning Collaborative group and co-chair of the Neonatal Sub-Committee.

 

 


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Christina Davidson, MD
Obstetrics Subcommittee Co-Chair
Assistant Professor, Obstetrics and Gynecology
Baylor College of Medicine

Christina Davidson, MD, is a board certified physician in both Obstetrics and Gynecology and Maternal Fetal Medicine in the division of Maternal Fetal Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine.  Davidson served as the Chief of the Obstetrics and Gynecology Service at Ben Taub Hospital from 2011-2016 and is currently the Associate Division Director of Maternal Fetal Medicine.  She is the Chair of the Ben Taub Hospital Perinatal Guidelines Committee, the Associate Director of the Texas Children's Hospital Evidence Based Outcomes Center, and Co-Chair of the Texas Collaborative for Healthy Mothers and Babies Obstetrics subcommittee. During her time as Chief of Service, Dr. Davidson assisted with the development of an Obstetric Infectious Disease Clinic at Ben Taub Hospital, which has become a recognized referral center for women with possible Zika exposure. 

 

 

 


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Carla Ortique, MD, FACOG, DABFP
Obstetrics Subcommittee Co-Chair
Obstetrics, Texas Children's Hospital
Chair, Committee on Maternal & Perinatal Health
Texas Medical Association    
Foundation Board Member, TMF Health Quality Institute

Dr. Carla Ortique earned a B.S. in bacteriology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1982 and her M.D. from University of Illinois College of Medicine in 1986. Dr. Ortique completed an internship and residency in family medicine at the University of Illinois and completed her training in obstetrics and gynecology at St. Paul Ramsey Medical Center in St, Paul, Minn., in 1995. Dr. Ortique has been in the active practice of obstetrics and gynecology in Texas since August 1995. Board-certified in obstetrics and gynecology since 1997, Dr. Ortique incorporates her family medicine training as well as training in complementary and alternative therapies to provide comprehensive care to female patients. Areas of special interest include spirituality and medicine, general obstetrics, minimally invasive surgical procedures including hysteroscopy and laparoscopy, preventative healthcare and patient safety, guidance for perimenopausal and menopausal patients. She currently serves as the Chair of the Committee on Maternal and Perinatal Health with the Texas Medical Association, a Foundation Board Member with the TMF Health Quality Institute and on the Executive Committee of Texas Collaborative for Healthy Mothers and Babies.


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June Hanke, RN, MSN, MPH
Community Subcommittee Co-Chair
Strategic Analyst / Planner/ GIS Analyst
Harris County Hospital District

June Hanke is Strategic Analyst and Planner and provides GIS analysis and mapping for the Harris Health System.  Ms. Hanke researches and gathers data to analyze the various health indicators for Harris County.  Her master in nursing was perinatal nurse practitioner and the master in public health focused on international maternal health and health policy. Her clinical nursing experience has been in women’s and infant’s health. Ms Hanke has participated in numerous community committees addressing issues related to maternal and infant health, including: Co-Chair of the March of Dimes’ Houston Healthy Babies are Worth the Wait project, SUNNY FUTURES Healthy Start Executive Committee, the Nurse Family Partnership Community Board and the Prenatal/Obstetrical Service Task Force, of the Greater Houston Partnerships Public Health Taskforce. Ms. Hanke is a member of IMPACT (Impacting Maternal and Prenatal Care Together) a collation of individuals and organization working to address women’s and infant health in Harris County and participated in the work to have legislation passed to have a maternal mortality morbidity review taskforce in place in Texas. She is a member of the Texas Maternal Mortality Morbidity Review Taskforce.


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Janet Jones, MPH, CHES
Community Subcommittee Co-Chair

Janet Jones, MPH, currently works for the City of Waco as the Public Health Education Specialist Lead and is the Supervisor for the Health Education Department at the Waco-McLennan County Public Health District.  In addition to serving on health advisory committees throughout the county, in her day-to-day activities, she works on programs that focus on reduction of infant mortality and preterm birth, healthy eating and active living, access to healthcare, as well as reduction in smoking and chronic disease. Jones serves as manager of the Healthy Texas Babies grant and project lead for the maternal & child health program. Jones is also temporary Faculty for Baylor University serving as an Adjunct Instructor in the Family & Consumer Sciences Department.

 

 

 

 


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Catherine Eppes, MD, MPH, Baylor College of Medicine
Data Subcommittee Co-Chair
Maternal Fetal Medicine Physician, Baylor College of Medicine
Chief of Obstetrics, Ben Taub Hospital

Dr. Catherine Eppes is a maternal fetal medicine physician at Baylor College of Medicine, and the Chief of Obstetrics for Ben Taub Hospital.  She received dual degrees in molecular biology and psychology from the University of Texas, Austin.  She received her MD from The University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio and completed residency at Johns Hopkins.  Her fellowship, and masters of public health, were received from Northwestern University. Her primary areas of focus are quality & safety and infectious diseases in pregnancy.  Recently, she has been focused on Zika virus during pregnancy, including numerous collaborations with the CDC, ACOG, and the Texas Medical Association.  She has travelled with the Zika to Brownsville to partner with the Brownsville department of public health in their efforts to stop local spread.  She also was the course director for the Society of Maternal Fetal Medicine Zika and other infectious disease course in 2017.  She has given grand rounds and plenary presentations in multiple venues, in efforts to educate providers and patients about Zika virus.  She is currently the ACOG District XI (Texas) patient quality and safety chair, serves on the Texas Collaborative for Healthy Mothers and Babies, and the Texas fetal and infant review of HIV and Syphilis.  She holds several grants with the CDC for influenza and HIV in pregnancy.


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Patrick Ramsey, MD, MSPH
Data Subcommittee Co-Chair
Professor and Maternal-Fetal Medicine Specialist, UT Health San Antonio

Patrick S. Ramsey, MD, MSPH is Professor, practicing maternal-fetal medicine in the Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio where he serves as Director of the Maternal-Fetal Medicine Fellowship and Maternal Transport and Outreach Program.  Dr. Ramsey received his Bachelor of Science degree in Zoology from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire in 1987 and his Doctorate of Medicine from the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine in 1994.  He completed his residency training in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Mayo Graduate School of Medicine in Rochester, MN in 1998 and subsequently completed sub-specialty fellowship training in Maternal-Fetal Medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham where he also received his Masters of Science in Public Health from the University of Alabama in 2003. Her serves on the Executive Committee of the Texas Collaborative for Healthy Mothers and Babies (TCHMB) and as co-Chair of the Data Subcommittee.  He also serves as a member on the State of Texas Maternal Mortality Task Force.  His research interests include preterm birth and prevention strategies and infectious diseases in pregnancy.  Dr. Ramsey had led regional efforts in South Texas, in collaboration with the San Antonio Metropolitan Health District and Center for Disease Control and Prevention, for promotion of Zika awareness and education.  


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Sharyn Malatok
March of Dimes Representative
Regional Director, MCH Program Impact
March of Dimes, Region 2 (Texas, Louisiana)

Sharyn Malatok received her Master of Arts in Public Administration from the University of Houston and her BS from Waynesburg University in Biology. She is currently the Regional Director for Maternal and Child Health Innovation with the March of Dimes. She oversees the implementation of the mission footprint in Texas and Louisiana. This includes developing public health programs and campaigns to improve birth outcomes; convening stakeholders to address MCH issues relevant to preconception, pregnancy and interconception; and strategic planning on statewide efforts to decrease prematurity rates. She provides oversight in addressing state needs related to Zika educational information being disseminated to consumers and providers.


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Manda Hall, MD
DSHS Representative
Title V Maternal and Child Health Medical Director
Texas Department of State Health Services

Manda Hall, M.D. was named the Title V Maternal and Child Health Medical Director at the Texas Department of State Health Services in March of 2016. Prior to this position, Dr. Hall served as the Title V Children with Special Health Care Needs Director for over three years. Dr. Hall received her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Lamar University and her medical degree from Texas A&M University Health Science Center College of Medicine. She completed her Internal Medicine/Pediatrics residency and an Allergy and Immunology fellowship at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Dr. Hall serves as a member of the Association of Maternal and Child Health Legislative and Health Care Finance Committee.  She graduated in May of 2014 as a fellow in the Maternal and Child Health Public Health Leadership institute at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the Texas Health and Human Services Executive Leadership Academy in 2017.  She is a faculty member of the DSHS Preventative Medicine and Public Health Residency Program and serves as a mentor in the University of Texas Health Careers and Mentorship Program.


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Tamela Griffin
HHSC Representative
Deputy Director for Office of Policy
Texas Health and Human Services Commission

Tamela Griffin is the Director for the Office of Policy in the Medicaid/CHIP division of the Health and Human Services Commission.  She has worked for 25 years in a wide variety of roles within the Health and Human Services system as well as at the local level.  Areas of experience include fiscal policy, behavioral health and children's issues.  Ms. Griffin holds a Master of Public Administration and a Master of Education, with a focus on community agency counseling.  Previous positions include Director for Policy, Early Childhood Intervention and Director, Federal Funds at the Department of Family and Protective Services.  


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Sasha Rasco, MPAff
DFPS Representative
 Associate Commissioner of Prevention and Early Intervention, Texas Department of Family and Protective Services

Ms. Rasco is currently serving as the Associate Commissioner Prevention and Early Intervention at the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services. She took this position in August of 2013. Previously, Ms. Rasco worked for 14 years regulating and supporting early childhood education and foster care, including two years as the Assistant Commissioner for Child Care Licensing at DFPS. Ms. Rasco has also developed programs and projects in other child and family service organizations including the Early Childhood Intervention program, the Texas Alliance of Child and Family Services and as a Governor’s Policy Fellow in the Governor of Maryland: Office of Children, Youth, and Families. She received her Master of Public Affairs and Bachelor of Arts from University of Texas at Austin in 1996, and 1994, respectively.


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David Lakey, MD
UT System Representative
Chief Medical Officer and Associate Vice Chancellor for Population Health, The University of Texas System
Isadore Roosth Distinguished Professor Dean of the School of Community Health and Health Professions, UT Health Northeast

David Lakey, MD, is Associate Vice Chancellor for Population Health and Chief Medical Officer for The University of Texas System. He is also Senior Vice President for Population Health, Isadore Roosth Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the School of Community Health and Health Professions with UT Health Northeast. He serves on a federal public health advisory committee for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Defense Health Board. Lakey served as Commissioner of the Texas Department of State Health Services from January 2007 to February 2015. As Commissioner, Dr. Lakey led one of the state’s largest agencies with a staff of 12,000 and an annual budget of $3.3 billion and oversaw programs such as disease prevention and disaster preparedness, family and community health services, environmental and consumer safety, regulatory programs and mental health and substance abuse prevention and treatment programs. Lakey served as president of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) in 2011‐2012. In 2015, he was elected by the March of Dimes to a five‐year term on its board of trustees.


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Lynda Tyer-Viola, PhD, RNC, FAAN
At Large Member
‎Director of Nursing, Texas Children's Hospital Pavilion for Women

Dr. Tyer-Viola received her PhD from Boston College in Nursing Research and Statistics. She received an MSN in Nursing and Midwifery from the University Of Miami, Florida and her BSN from Boston University. She served as a post-doctoral fellow at Massachusetts General Hospital studying HIV related fatigue in pregnancy. Her research has focused on high risk pregnancy and persons living with HIV/AIDS. Currently Dr. Tyer-Viola is the nursing executive for Women's Services at Texas Children's Hospital, Houston. She has extensive clinical experience with large urban obstetrical care delivery systems across the United States and in low resourced countries in Africa and Asia. She provides grant and research support as a board member of the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation and is a member of the greater Houston advisory board for the March of Dimes campaign for Healthy Babies are Worth the Wait. Dr. Tyer-Viola supports the Texas Collaborative for Healthy Mothers and Babies as the At-large Executive Board member and is a member of the Obstetrics Subcommittee.  


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Moss Hampton, MD
At Large Member
Chair, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Texas Tech University Health Science Center of the Permian Basin

For the last 11 years Moss Hampton, MD, has been the chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology for Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center of the Permian Basin, in Odessa, Texas. Hampton is a past president of Texas Association of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (TAOG), and was District Chair of ACOG District XI from 2013-16. He also serves on the Women’s Health Advisory Committee for the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials Increasing Access to Contraception Learning Committee, and the Maternal-Child Health Committee for the Texas Chapter of the March of Dimes. He became involved with the Healthy Texas Babies Initiative Steering Committee in 2012 and has subsequently been involved with the Texas Collaborative for Healthy Mothers and Babies since its inception in 2014. He is currently serving his second term as Member at Large to TCHMB.