Amber Sheeks is a RD/LD, IBCLC working towards her MPH. She is currently taking a break from work to stay home with her breastfeeding son, Henry. Amber lives in New Lexington, OH.
"When I came to Ohio's Appalachia 6 years ago, I was utterly surprised at how many women I talk to at Muskingum County WIC that didn't even consider breastfeeding. As a dietitian, I had learned the composition of milk, and the importance of a mother's milk to her baby's health, but as a former nanny, I knew how important breastfeeding is to a mother and baby's relationship. One day our Breastfeeding Peer was out of the office and a mom needed some assistance getting her baby to latch well. I had just gotten back from Back to Basics training at Ohio State WIC and helped the mom with positioning. The baby latched and the mom was so grateful! For the first time working at WIC, I felt like I had made a difference for someone. Once our peer heard about this, she invited me to learn more with her, and encouraged me to get CLC training. It is safe to say that ever since then, I have been hooked! I became an IBCLC in 2014, and absolutely love helping moms and babies meet their breastfeeding goals. I am currently taking an extended maternity leave from my career to nurse my son, Henry. I ended up needing so much support professionally and emotionally as we battled with a tongue tie that did not get adequately addressed until almost 5 months. I am more passionate than ever before to provide support and education to our local moms, and I run a local mom-to-mom Facebook support group. Once I finish my MPH this year, I plan to look for teaching opportunities at the local universities to better educate future health professionals in breastfeeding, and maternal and infant nutrition."
Each month, our ABN board uses a random number generator to pick our member of the month. In an effort to showcase our many different members in many different fields from all over Appalachia working towards the same goal: transforming breastfeeding culture in Appalachia.