Carolina Global Breastfeeding Institute (CGBI)

Breastfeeding Exclusive June 2017 - Colleague Corner- Lisa Akers

Lisa Akers

Lisa Akers, PhD, RDN, IBCLC, RLC, FAND, has been working in the field of public health and human lactation for over 16 years where she spent nearly 15 of those years with the Virginia WIC Program. As the State Breastfeeding Coordinator Lisa quickly learned that it is through partnerships and collaborations between governmental, for-profit, and nonprofit organizations that systems change around breastfeeding can be leveraged and sustained. It is for this reason that Lisa embarked on her journey to earn her PhD in Strategic Leadership Studies from James Madison University. She concentrated her studies on nonprofit and community leadership and more specifically on nonprofit healthcare organizations. Lisa combined her passion for the field of human lactation with her study of organizational leadership to examine the organizational factors that influence quality perinatal care and ultimately affect breastfeeding relationships.

Lisa is currently the Executive Director for the Best for Babes® Foundation. The mission of the Best for Babes® Foundation is to change the cultural perception of breastfeeding and Beat the Breastfeeding Booby Traps®–the cultural, institutional and legal barriers that prevent parents from making informed feeding decisions and that prevent moms from achieving their personal breastfeeding goals (whether that’s 2 days, 2 months or 2 years) without judgment, pressure or guilt.

Lisa has served on numerous national and international boards and committees including the International Lactation Consultant Association (ILCA), the Women’s Health Dietetic Practice Group (WH DPG) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and the United States Breastfeeding Committee (USBC). Her expertise in nonprofit leadership has afforded her the opportunity to work with numerous organizations in areas such as change management, fundraising, governance, program evaluation, and strategic planning. Lisa is currently working as a consultant with CGBI in several of these areas.