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SWOBC would like to welcome Dr. Julie Ware...


We are so pleased and excited to welcome Dr. Julie Ware, MD, MPH, IBCLC to the Southwest Ohio

Breastfeeding Coalition! Julie, a board-certified pediatrician and lactation consultant, recently moved

to Cincinnati from Memphis, where she chaired the Shelby County Breastfeeding Coalition and was Co-Chapter Breastfeeding Coordinator for the Tennessee AAP. As a passionate advocate for breastfeeding, Julie spearheaded and participated in efforts that nearly doubled the breastfeeding rates in Shelby County, Tennessee. She strives to improve breastfeeding rates on a community level through education,

advocacy, and the distribution of breastfeeding resources. As a new coalition with similar goals, the Southwest Ohio Breastfeeding Coalition looks to Julie’s previous community work as inspiration for what we can achieve in the Greater Cincinnati area.

While in Memphis, Julie led focus groups that looked more in-depth at barriers to

breastfeeding for African American women in Shelby County. Women listed many

barriers to breastfeeding in their lives, including pain, embarrassment about

breastfeeding in public, work, the inability to drink while breastfeeding, and just not

wanting to breastfeed. Women in the focus groups brainstormed suggestions for

how to overcome these barriers, including widely distributing educational materials

where women of color would be able to access them.

As the Ohio Department of Health has noted, African American women in Cincinnati

are nearly 20% less likely to be breastfeeding upon hospital discharge than their

white counterparts. Julie plans to work with the Community Outreach Committee to

reduce this gap in breastfeeding success, which likely stems from a lack of

community support and resources. We hope to lead similar focus groups in

Cincinnati communities with the lowest breastfeeding rates and garner suggestions

from the very women who struggle with breastfeeding with the hope of improving

their access to breastfeeding resources and support.

Julie is co-leader of the SWOBC Physician Education Committee and is extremely

involved in the efforts of the SWOBC Community Outreach Committee.

-written by Stephanie Sieswerda 2015


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