Log in

Marion Toepke McLean, Certified Nurse Midwife

January 24th, 2009 (09:22 pm)

"Marion delivered her first baby in Africa." Her husband, Fergus, called me to announce this touching news. Marion has volunteered in Afghanistan and now in Uganda. She is my very special mentor and a faithful writer for Midwifery Today from before its birth. It was in 1976 that I was touched by the calling to midwifery. At this time Marion, a Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM), began teaching midwifery classes to a small group of us. She has been my friend and mentor ever since. She has been faithful in writing her column and a number of other articles for us for the past 22+ years from issue Number 1 and before that in planning what Midwifery Today would look like. As she is such a good teacher we quickly brought her into teaching at our conferences. This gives you the opportunity to experience her in two ways, her writing and her conference teaching.

Marion joined our midwifery practices for a year while she was teaching us didactic classes. Before and after that we could always call her from a birth, even if it was 3 am, to confer. This saved several transports as she would help us ascertain if things were within the realm of normal. For us it was like having a very knowledge- and heart-filled CNM at every birth. She was so humble, she told us she learned as much from us as we did from her. Since she taught us all the midwifery we knew, we were sure this couldn't be true, but it shows how very sweet and unassuming Marion is.

What I hope for each of you is that you have a Marion in your midwife, doula or childbirth education life. There is nothing more valuable.

Jan Tritten
Midwifery Today

Read these two articles by Marion:

Marion Toepke McLean, CNM, attended her first birth as primary midwife in August 1971. She received her nursing degree from Pacific Lutheran University in 1966 and her midwifery and family nurse practitioner degree from Frontier Nursing Service in 1974. From 1976 through 2001 she did clinic, hospital and homebirths, while also working as a family nurse practitioner. In 1980 she taught a year-long program for local midwives, returning to Frontier Nursing Service to teach during the summer. In June 2000 she completed a BA in International Studies at the University of Oregon, with concentrated studies on Mexico. Since 2002 she has worked in a reproductive health clinic and attended an occasional homebirth. She lives in Eugene, Oregon, and is a contributing editor to Midwifery Today.


Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: May 29th, 2009 02:05 am (UTC)
You are oh so right about Marion

For some reason when online this evening I ended up looking at midwifery posts and when I saw the post about Marion being in Uganda, I had to stop and read it. Marion was my midwife at my home birth in Eugene 21 years ago. The pictures of the "face presentation" were published in MT...it was such a wonderful day. At the time, I worked for the midwifery service that Marion was affiliated with as well, and so I know her from more than one perspective. She truly touched my life and to this day I remember her warm, calm and comforting way. I am truly blessed to have had her be a part of my life. Additionally, she was so inspiring that I pursued the midwifery path myself and became a CNM. My life has taken me down many different avenues since then and even though I am no longer on the midwifery road, I will always remember those years with Marion being at the heart of some of my fondest memories. Indeed, she is an inspiration to all.

On another note, Jan, it is absolutely incredible that you have managed to keep Midwifery Today going so strong over all these years. As a part of your very first staff, I still remember sitting with piles and piles of Midwifery Today magazine on my living room floor preparing them for mailing. Those were the days huh?? Congratulations and thanks for carrying on the very important work you do. I have such fond memories.

Love and Peace,
Judy Begley

1 Read Comments