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Midwives Spotlight

The UNC Midwives join NCACNM in celebrating North Carolina’s Midwives of Color by sharing profiles of two of our very own midwives whose presence and contributions enrich the lives of countless patients and families and make the UNC Midwives who we are. Click below to read their stories.

Shannon Maaske headshot
Shannon Maaske

Shannon Maaske, CNM describes the path to her career in midwifery as “something I kind of fell into.” She enrolled at University of Iowa with plans to study psychology while completing pre-med requirements. At that time she didn’t even know that midwifery “was a thing.” However, a volunteer job in the Neonatal Intensive Care unit at the University hospital changed those plans. As a “cuddler,” she spent time holding the hospital’s youngest patients whose own parents might not be available for this important aspect of neonatal development. She described this time as “the best 2 hours of my week.” This work led to her meeting nurses, nurse practitioners and midwives and she quickly found herself switching to the nursing program. One of her nursing school professors was a midwife  who became an important mentor. She encouraged Shannon to pursue an internship on labor and delivery during her senior year. Although Shannon was admitted to midwifery school at University of Minnesota immediately out of nursing school, she deferred her studies a year and worked full time on labor and delivery.

An early trailblazer in online learning, Shannon was part of University of Minnesota’s distance learning midwifery program; she continued to live and work in Iowa while pursuing her degree making the long drive to Minneapolis once a month. Right out of midwifery school, Shannon was hired to work at a federally qualified health center. She served migrant farmer workers and refugees who were uninsured or underinsured. In this role Shannon drew on her bilingual and bicultural upbringing. Shannon’s mother is from Chile and Shannon grew up speaking both English and Spanish and has always enjoyed providing care to Spanish-speaking patients.

When asked what she finds most rewarding about midwifery, Shannon shared that she loves providing health information to women. “When you provide a woman with information about her body and how to care for herself that impacts her entire family and community. Empowering women makes a lifelong difference.” Shannon has impacted many communities during her career with her kind, compassionate care. We are certainly lucky to have her here at UNC!


UNC Midwives serve clients throughout their lives from teen to mature people. We provide a wide range of services including first gynecological exams, obstetrical care, labor and delivery, contraception, perimenopause and preventative health care.


We place importance on teaching and counseling and working together with people and their families in designing the best birth plan for birthing people and the best health care plan for all.

What makes midwifery care different? Find out on our About Us page.

We’re now also an official site for CenteringPregnancy® group prenatal care, offered at UNC OB-GYN, specifically through the UNC Midwives practice!

We have two convenient locations for midwifery, gynecologic, and prenatal care, and we’re happy to see you at whichever location is convenient over the course of your care with us. Please note that we deliver at NC Women’s Hospital in Chapel Hill.

UNC OB-GYN at Weaver Crossing in Chapel Hill | 984-974-7005

UNC OB-GYN at Panther Creek in Cary | 919-481-4747

UNC Midwives Earn National Best Practice Award for 8 Years in a Row!

“Triple Aim” Best Practice recognizes practices which meet the Institute for Healthcare Improvement “Triple Aim” of improving the patient experience, reducing cost of care, and improving the health of populations. This is demonstrated by high breastfeeding rates, low preterm birth and cesarean rates, and reporting fiscal variables. Of the 262 practices participating in the 2019 ACNM Benchmarking Project, 69 practices were designated Triple Aim Best Practices.