AOM Midwifery Awards

Banner image of 2 Midwifery Award trophies on either side of a vase with a red flower

The AOM Midwifery Awards Program is designed to recognize individuals or organizations that have made significant contributions to advance midwifery in their community, workplace, provincially, nationally, or internationally.

The awards are intended to: promote the profession of midwifery; encourage excellence in the field of midwifery; and support the integration of midwifery into the health-care system.

Guiding principles and objectives of the AOM's Midwifery Awards Program.

The AOM Midwifery Awards recognize individuals and organizations that promote excellence in midwifery practice and research; have made significant contributions to the midwifery profession, as well as quality perinatal and newborn care; and support the integration of midwifery into Ontario's health-care system.

Selections are based on established nominations criteria and selection procedures which have been developed for each award.

For information about each individual award, including nomination criteria, or to submit a nomination online, please click on the award names below.

If you have questions about the AOM Midwifery Awards please contact Diana MacNab.

Congratulations to the 2024 Winners!

​​​Elsie Cressman Award

Women’s Health in Women’s Hands Midwifery Program

Women’s Health in Women’s Hands Midwifery Program is a team of midwives from The Midwives’ Clinic of East York Don Mills offering midwifery services at Women’s Health in Women’s Hands Community Health Centre, a unique Community Health Centre in Toronto that exclusively serves racialized and uninsured women and trans people.

This project started in 2018, born out of a need identified by the CHC itself. Rather than awaiting alternative funding or approval for an expanded midwifery care model, the midwives started the program right away by offering satellite midwifery care at WHIWH. Because only 25% of the team’s caseload comes from WHIWH, the midwives go above and beyond by providing clinic both at WHIWH and The Midwives’ Clinic, giving clients access to all the same services as any other midwifery clients, including continuity of care, out of hospital birth night, prenatal classes, donations of baby items, car seats and access to uninsured coverage to cover some of the fees not covered by the CHC. The front desk and other primary providers at WHIWH now refer all pregnant people directly to the midwifery team. Research shows one of the barriers to uninsured clients accessing midwifery care is that they may not be referred by health centres or social services due to a lack of understanding of what midwives do, or that midwifery care is funded for uninsured people. An internal referral system to other providers within WHIWH, such as social work and counselling, ensures care services are coordinated and seamless across disciplines.


Bridget Lynch, RM

Bridget Lynch has been an integral pillar of leadership in the midwifery community in Ontario, across Canada and globally. As a pre-regulation midwife, inspired by a desire to normalize birth and the postpartum period for new families, Bridget helped usher in a new era of midwifery in Ontario. She, along with other pre-regulation midwives, pioneered the model of regulated midwifery that has shaped the identity of Ontario midwifery today. In 1994, the year midwifery was regulated in Ontario, Bridget founded Community Midwives of Toronto. While providing exceptional care to clients in her clinical practice, running a midwifery practice and fulfilling her role as Midwifery Division Head at three consecutive hospitals, Bridget also held the position of Associate Professor at McMaster University. Bridget served as President of the Association of Ontario Midwives and as President of the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM), and was a founding board member of the Canadian Association of Midwives (CAM).

Through her various leadership roles, Bridget has been a strong advocate of midwives as primary care providers and maintains firm views that midwives across the world are integral to improving neonatal and maternal outcomes. This was evident in her term as president of ICM, where her mandate was to set global standards for midwifery education and regulation while prioritizing diverse representation and inclusivity for all participating countries.

Bridget has mentored generations of midwives into leadership roles and had a special interest in integrating internationally trained midwives into practice in Ontario, with a passion and dedication uniquely informed by her lived experiences. Bridget has recently retired from her role as practice partner at Community Midwives of Toronto; however, at the request of the current partners, she maintains a role as consultant in all matters relating to midwifery practice management and remains a strong advocate and source of support for the team.



Excellence in Midwifery Research Award

Manavi Handa, RM, and Simone Rosenberg, RM

This ground-breaking study not only set the stage for Midwives in Ontario taking on this work, but serves as a testament to their visionary approach to midwifery addressing this health care need and maintaining access to this basic health care right for clients.

Simone and Manavi’s study holds historical significance as the first exploration of midwives' involvement in abortion provision in Canada. What makes their work truly visionary is that it predates the period when abortion services were officially provided by midwives in Ontario and the expanded models of midwifery care. This foresight demonstrates a commitment to pushing the boundaries of what was considered traditional midwifery care at the time and advocating for the expansion of midwives' roles to ensure clients, especially those who are most marginalized, would have safe and accessible access to this basic human right. The study not only highlighted midwives' willingness to provide abortion services but also brought attention to the vital role they were already playing in counseling and referral services. By affirming the readiness of midwives to engage in such critical aspects of this reproductive health care, Simone and Manavi have contributed significantly to reshaping the discourse around the capabilities and responsibilities of midwives in our health-care system.

Article: “Ontario Midwives Attitude about Abortion and Abortion Provision”, Canadian Journal of Midwifery Research and Practice, Vol 15, No 1, 2016

​​​​​Media Award

Steve Paikin

Steve Paikin interviews Elizabeth Brandeis and Manavi Handa to clarify misconceptions about midwifery care and discuss midwifery scope and opportunities for furthering midwifery leadership in the province. The piece also clarifies misunderstandings and misconceptions about midwifery pay equity.

Segment: Should midwives be allowed to do more in Ontario (TVO's The Agenda; May 17, 2023) 

​​​​​Hospital Integration Award

Ross Memorial Hospital

Ross Memorial Hospital is an excellent example of a fully integrated maternity system. Midwives care for over 50% of the births at the hospital. Midwives are valued for their knowledge and skills and included in all aspects of the unit. The midwifery team is looking to growing in 2025 and is well supported by the hospital to do this.

The HIROC Just Culture and Patient Safety Culture Award​​​​

[To be awarded Fall 2024]

This award was established with the generous support of the Healthcare Insurance Reciprocal of Canada (HIROC), the insurer for Ontario midwives. It recognizes the commitment to “just culture” and “patient safety culture” by students who identify as Indigenous, Black or racialized, and is awarded to three students every year.



Click here to see a list of previous winners.