Santa Rosa's Premier Birth Center
Thrive Founder and Business Owner
My path to Thrive started with children. To support myself through college, studying Economics and Child Psychology in 1996, I worked as a preschool teacher and after school sports program coordinator. Of course, teaching little ones was immensely rewarding, but I had an itch to dive into something more intellectually challenging. I made a switch to working for investment firm during the dot com boom. It was exciting work, and it was thankless work. I identified a need in myself to find work that was thrilling and rewarding, a job that was creative and community building, that uplifted myself and my community, and one where myself and my colleagues were valued. I set out on an unconventional path to find just that. Along the way, I managed a home improvement center called Yard Birds and learned the art of staff management and home construction. Needing a little more out of my career, I moved into managing their kitchen design department and found a job that satisfied my creative side and my analytical side. It was an instant match for me and it showed in becoming that top designer of the 11 stores.
It was great heading a new division in the home improvement center but I realized I was establishing a foundation for some one else’s business. I wanted to build something that reflected me and what I wanted out of kitchen design so in 2001 I started my own kitchen design company Tangible Dreams Kitchen Design and transitioned out of the work world and into the entrepreneurial world. That was 14 years ago. Since then I have started many companies and projects and the highlights are in 2011 MatterRise Inc. a 3-D printing company with 3 prototypes and 11 pending patents where I am the CEO and Co-Founder, in 2005 a medical supply company called The Green Cross celebrating our 10 year anniversary where I oversee expansion and business relations, in 2010 an online market place to support the Burning Man community called TheBurnList.org where I am CEO and Co-Founder, in 2013 JPHP Management, a business management company where I am founder and CEO, and my 15 year old design company Tangible Dreams that has morphed into an all inclusive construction company where I am the Sole Proprietor. During my entrepreneurial adventures I finished my degree in Economics and Child Psychology at Sonoma State in 2007.
There is a picture of me that thrills my girlfriend and my business partners. It’s one of me, as a small child in a stroller, being pushed by my mom at a rally for homebirth. In my small hands in a sign that says, “The Real Crime is a Forced Hospital Birth!” Two years earlier my mom had birthed me at home in Santa Cruz and our midwife was being put in jail. Quite literally, a seed had been planted and my connection to birth and all the choices that are the right of the family has never waivered. When I met the love of my life, Caitlin Kirkman, a kind hearted and successful homebirth midwife, it was not long before I found myself wanting to make an impact on the world of birthing. Caitlin’s love and focus for the birth movement was contagious and I stared attending midwifery conferences and doing my own independent study. I realized that this was still my calling and supporting the reemergence of this mother/baby centric way into this world has become a passion.
As an investor, my aim is to support the midwifery community with financial and business expertise to accelerate the growth of birth centers. Access to another choice for quality care in birthing as well as shifting the paradigm of thought towards out of hospital births is where I want to be with my time and energy as I transition into supporting this movement on a more full time basis. As a co-founder of Thrive Birth Center and working with the birthing community has proven to be some of my most rewarding work to date. To know that you are effecting the lives of so many new humans and new families leaves me humbled at the possible impact one person, one group, one community, one movement can have on so many. We have a smile factory at Thrive and I get to be a part of it.