Meet Our Blog Writers and Reviewers
Candace Page, MPH
Candace Page currently serves as a Public Health Advisor in the Center for Global Health (CGH). In her primary function, Ms. Page assists in the oversight of CGH COVID funding mechanisms and supports the management of the agency’s Global Rapid Response team. She also serves as Emergency Coordinator Support to the center’s Global Disease Detection Operations Center. She began her time with the agency as an ORISE fellow, facilitating the implementation of a center-wide initiative to connect non research funding opportunities in the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. Prior to her appointments with the CDC, she managed program operations and employee wellbeing programming for Worksite Wellness at the Georgia Department of Public Health.
Ms. Page has also worked with the Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition of Georgia completing quality assurance and I&R measures. In addition to her contributions as a blog writer, Ms. Page recently served as the Vice President of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for CDC’s Young Professionals Network. Candace holds a B.A. in Women’s Gender and sexuality Studies from Emory University and an MPH from Mercer University.
Dr. Sheila LaFortune, DNP, APRN, CNM
Sheila LaFortune knew from an early age, growing up in Massachusetts, that she wanted to pursue a career in the medical field. Her love of biology in high school led her to pursue an associate’s degree in nursing, which was both an obvious choice and a rather enjoyable undertaking. This was quickly followed by a baccalaureate degree. The birth of her daughter, which was attended by a midwife, inspired her to enroll at Stony Brook University for a master’s degree in Nursing with a concentration in midwifery.
Sheila recently completed a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She has been working as a nurse for 23 years and 7 as a midwife. She worked in several areas of nursing prior to midwifery school, including the ED, ICU, and medical surgical nursing. Sheila also worked in community health homecare for 10 years. She is currently working as a midwife in office and hospital postpartum units. In addition, Sheila also teaches medical students in the office setting and serves as a Clinical Instructor at the Emory School of Nursing. Furthermore, she teaches postpartum hemorrhage drills to nursing staff at a local hospital. Clinical interests include improving outcomes for women during obstetrical care by improving communication among patients and their healthcare team. She is a Midwife Director for Advanced Care Network LLC. The company promotes obstetrical and postpartum services in the community by teaching women about postpartum complications and newborn care. Her personal interests include traveling with family, reading, and walking.
Lauren Rivera, BSN, RNC-NIC, CBC
Lauren Rivera is a nationally certified neonatal intensive care nurse with over 15 years of experience. She serves as a maternal-infant nurse expert and is passionate about offering support and educational classes for women from preconception through pregnancy and the newborn period. Lauren is a freelance writer with works published on several nursing and health-related sites. She develops, curates, and edits content for various healthcare companies, serves as a subject matter expert, and writes continuing education modules for other healthcare professionals.
Lauren has four children and loves exposing them to new experiences and going on adventures.
Adiba Hussain, MPH
Adiba Hussain is Midwesterner turned into a southern gal. She’s a blog writer for Pickles & Ice Cream and is also going to be a first-time mom! She’s got great experience in the public health field from working with small communities to working with the CDC. She definitely has some great experience to be shared, both personal and professional with the P&I community! You can find her snuggled with her cat or on the hunt for a newest bubble tea shop!
Katie Taibl, RN, BSN, CPN
Katie Taibl is a Certified Pediatric Registered Nurse and freelance writer. She has been a nurse for over eight years. As a pediatrics “jack-of-all-trades,” she has worked in PICU, NICU, hematology-oncology, bone marrow transplant, medical-surgical, long-term acute care, and step-down. She was also a travel nurse for nearly four years! As a travel nurse, she worked at many high-ranking children’s hospitals across the country, including Boston Children’s, Vanderbilt, CHLA, and UCSF. Katie is also a surf instructor with Gnome Surf. She teaches kids of varying abilities, many with sensory processing disorders. When she worked at Tuft’s Children’s Hospital, she was part of the DEI committee. Katie strives to be a better advocate for the most vulnerable, especially LGBTQIA+ kids. She is passionate about the health and wellness of children and babies from all walks of life. She wants them and their families to feel safe, supported, and nurtured, with better access to health care.
Rebecca Cook, BSN, RN
Rebecca Cook has been a registered nurse for over 16 years. She currently works in the home health industry, but started her career in the emergency department. She has dabbled in case management, utilization review, and hospice. Rebecca is also the owner of Nurses’ Notes, LLC. When she’s not working, writing, or shuttling my kids to and fro, she enjoys reading, traveling, tackling home projects with her husband and listening to all the true crime podcasts.
Leslie Catalano, MSN, LEC
Leslie Catalano has experience working with pregnant, post-partum and breastfeeding mothers. She provides breastfeeding education to family maternal nurses as well as breastfeeding mothers and families. She obtained her Lactation Education Counselor certificate from UC San Diego.
Jay Morris, BSPH, MPH
Jay Morris is a data analysis ORISE fellow at CDC. Prior to CDC, he worked at Georgia State University as a training specialist at the Meta-Analysis Training and Resarch Institutes under Dr. Terri Pigott. Jay is also a member of the Building Healthy Places Network’s first consulting cohort. He is also an independent research consultant. In his free time, Jay does yoga, cooks, reads, plays video games, and hangs with friends. His passions are writing poetry, spending time with friends, and staying active and healthy.
April Rowe, RN
April Rowe, RN, is a freelance health writer at RNtoPen.com. She has over fifteen years of experience as a Registered Nurse, specializing in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Pediatrics, Home Health, Hospice & Palliative Care. By combining her passion for nursing with her love of writing, April creates content through articles, blog posts, educational materials, etc. She lives in South Carolina with her husband, children, and three dogs. April loves learning languages and traveling the world.
Janelle King, MPH, BSN, RN
Janelle King is an award-winning registered nurse, writer, and blogger. She holds a bachelor’s degree in nursing and a master’s degree in public health. She has spent many years educating young women about reproductive and sexual health during her nursing career.
In addition to writing for Pickles & Ice Cream, she contributes articles to many other brands. You can find her hanging out with her husband and 8-year-old daughter in her spare time.