URI recognizes professor as Nurse Midwife of the Year
“It blew me away that it was the first time midwives were nominated and that I was selected out of a pool of so many who should be honored,” Erickson-Owens said.
Throughout her career, Erickson-Owens helped bring 1,400 babies into the world, serving for 20 years as an Air Force nurse and midwife and only closing her own practice in 2014. During her time in the military, where she achieved the rank of colonel, Erickson-Owens led the obstetrical department at the Air Force Academy hospital, located in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and was the Air Force surgeon general’s midwifery consultant.
Now working in academia, Erickson-Owens is deeply involved in researching umbilical cord clamping with URI Professor Emeritus Judith Mercer and colleagues from Brown University.
“It’s amazing when women in their 80s and 90s can recount their birth experiences: the vividness of the experience…it can be a time when a woman really discovers herself and her strength,” Erickson-Owens said. “Midwives are there to help them and be a partner in that.”