Lead Midwife & Clinical Director
Shé:kon! My name is Jasmine Kahentineshen Benedict. I am the Lead Midwife and Clinical Director for the Onkwehón:we Midwives Collective. I am a member of the Ronathahión:ni (Wolf Clan). I have had a lifelong interest in holistic health and medicines. I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology from St. Lawrence University. After discovering how midwifery integrated my diverse interests into one field, I attended Birthwise Midwifery School in Bridgton, Maine. I completed my preceptorship in New Zealand, where I expanded my knowledge by working among Maori homebirth midwives. Upon my return from New Zealand, I began serving the Akwesasne community, offering homebirth that embraces Haudenosaunee cultural knowledge and modern midwifery care.
Shé:kon! My name is Beatrice Johnson-Tarbell, Konwákeri – Deer Clan. I am the Executive Director for the Onkwehón:we Midwives Collective. I joined the OMC in 2018 to help create systems and structures for Midwifery Services, Doula Services, Indigenous Midwife Training, and to support political activities. As a lifelong member of Akwesasne, I have been a business owner, public speaker and trainer for over 25 years. With my husband Bruce, we are parents of 7 children and have 7 grandchildren all living/working in Akwesasne. I have the honor of working with great group of people that believe in supporting our families’ choice in healthy/safe birth experiences. I absolutely love green tea, kayaking, and witty conversations with great friends.
Kwey Kakina! (Hello everyone) My name is Mandy Commonda and I am an Algonquin midwife from Kitigan Zibi, just north of Ottawa/Gatineau. I have been working with Onkwehon:we Midwives Collective as their Midwifery/Clinical Advisor since December 2019. I have been a midwife since 2014 after graduating from the Ontario Midwifery Education program at Laurentian University in Sudbury. I came into midwifery after hearing many disappointing and unjust birth stories from mothers bringing in their babies while working in childcare. It made me realize how much women from my community – and all other First Nation communities – need safe and culturally appropriate prenatal, labour and birth, and postpartum care. This dream will soon enough be a reality after a very long road. My passions include spending as much time as I can with my husband, my 22-year-old son, and my 17-year-old twin daughters. I love to bead and sew regalia, camping and pontoon-ing and pow wow-ing in the summer, and being a broomball mom in the winter.
Shé:kon! My name is Pamela Pembleton. I am the Executive Assistant at the Onkwehonwe Midwives Collective. I joined the team in January of 2020. I have spent much of my career in an assistant role as I enjoy the behind the scenes work. I joined the OMC team because I am passionate about women’s health and wellness, the birthing cycle of life and overall health of my community. I am a mom to 2 wildly hilarious boys, Rakwirahes and Rarontiiostha; and wife to Rasennes. I enjoy reading, playing outside, making tea and laughing.
Tehya Karonhianonwes Benedict
Shé:kon, my name is Tehya Karonhianonwes Benedict. I am the Office Caretaker. I also refer to myself as the “house goblin”. I pride myself in maintaining the cleanliness of the clinic and impressing everyone with my baking ability. My interests include dance, functional movement, and nutrition.