HMHBGA

PRESS ADVISORY: Inspiring Mothers of Georgia Award Winners Announced!

Author: HMHBGA Staff

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: PRESS ADVISORY

CONTACT: Mica Whitfieldmica.whitfield@hmhbga.org

May 5, 2020 – Atlanta, GA
Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition of Georgia (HMHBGA) is proud to announce this year’s winners for the 2020 Inspiring Mothers of Georgia Awards. HMHBGA presents this award annually to six Inspiring Mothers from across the state who embody the characteristics of Strength, Sacrifice, Caring, Compassion and Generosity.

“These women have made incredible impact not only within their own families, but throughout their communities here in Georgia,” explains HMHBGA Executive Director, Elise Blasingame. “They embody the spirit of this award and we are proud to honor them this year.”

“Due to the pandemic, we had to postpone the original celebration of these awardees from late April to August 9, 2020,” shared HMHBGA Public Relations Chair, Latasia Brown. “We hope to be able to gather in person at that time, but are also making plans in case we need to celebrate virtually.”

The process this year was very competitive with over 45 nominations received! The six awardees and their bios are listed below.

2020 Inspiring Mothers of Georgia Award Winners:

Amy Ard – Atlanta, GA – Mother | Organizer | Justice-Seeker

Amy Ard, a native of Atlanta, has spent a career building nonprofits and small businesses committed to justice-work and maternal health. She founded and owned DC Birth Doulas, the largest doula agency in Washington D.C., before moving to her home state of Georgia to advocate and work directly with incarcerated pregnant women and families impacted by parental incarceration. She is the Executive Director of Motherhood Beyond Bars and was honored to work with a broad coalition of advocates who wrote legislation that ended the practice of shackling of pregnant and postpartum women in Georgia’s prison and jails in 2019. She lives in a multi-generational home with her mother, husband and three children. 

“For someone who consistently shoots for a participation trophy, this feels like a monumental gift! I’m honored to be included on this list of inspiring mothers and wish to thank many of the mothers I’ve met in prison and beyond who have illuminated my path.” – Amy Aard

Conyetta Clements – Macon, GA – Mom | Friend | Mentor

Conyetta Clemmons, 39 yrs old, is a resident of Macon, GA. She is a mother of two handsome boys (12 & 14) and a foster mother of three beautiful girls. She became a foster mother in 2017 when she began fostering Ayva and her sister Isabella. Ayva is happy baby, but needs special care as she suffered from shaken baby syndrome, congestive heart failure, moderate cerebral palsy, as well as a genetic disorder. She will turn three in June and requires a lot of hospital visits. In early 2019, Conyetta began fostering Laila, Ayba & Isabella’s sister.

Conyetta enjoys shopping, eating, and traveling whenever she gets the chance. She keeps very busy with her teenage sons and her three foster daughters.

“It’s an honor to be recognized as a good mother and I wouldn’t change it for anything.” – Conyetta Clements

Jenny Cochran – Atlanta, GA – Mother | Educator | Mentor

Jenny Cochran is a certified childbirth educator with CAPPA and an Evidence Based Birth® Instructor. Jenny began teaching childbirth classes in 2002 after the birth of her first child. From there her passion for birth work grew and she became a certified labor doula. In 2009, Jenny recognized a need in a neighboring community, labor doula support for refugee women. After volunteering her doula services with World Relief Jenny realized that childbirth education and health advocacy were also a need in the refugee community in Clarkston. 

In 2010 Embrace Refugee Birth was born and joined with a loarger non-profit, Friends of Refugees. As the founder of Embrace Jenny served as the Director until 2019 when she stepped away to return to school. She has served the Atlanta metro area for more than 17 years as a Childbirth Educator teaching over 600 couples and as a labor doula attending more than 100 births. Jenny loves educating families about the birth process and how be a confident consumer in our medical system. It is her passion to see families advocating for themselves with confidnece and current evidence on maternal healthcare practices.

“It was humbling to be nominated and it is such an honor to have been selected as one of the six inspiring mothers.” – Jenny Cochran

Tracey Moore – Covington, GA – Advocate | Mentor | Friend

Tracy is a grateful follower of Jesus Christ and has been happily married to her husband Scott for 31 years. They have served in full-time ministry at Eastridge Church in Covington, GA for almost 30 years. They are parents to six amazing sons, two beautiful and talented daughters-in-law, and three precious grandchildren. In 2013, they were forever immersed into the world of special needs when they adopted their fifth son, Samuel Kage, and then again in 2018 with their sixth son, Trenton. Although no longer fostering due to their sons’ significant needs, Tracy and Scott will always be advocates for both the foster care system and the orphaned, and also for those with disabilities.

Tracy is a graduate of Point University majoring in human relations and counseling. Over the past 30 years, she has enjoyed many roles including leading in women’s ministry, speaking at various retreats and conferences, teaching bible studies and classes, counseling women, homeschooling, and teaching psychology at Scholars Guild Academy in Loganville, GA. Currently, she’s chasing a life-long dream of continuing her education and becoming certified as a biblical counselor with Think LifeChange Institute of Biblical Counseling. 

“I am incredibly humbled. I am only one woman in a world with many, many moms whose hard work, love, sacrifice, and determination could also be awarded. Because I was chosen, it leaves me very thankful.” – Tracey Moore

Kimya Motley – Covington, GA – Mom | Champion | DV Dragon-Slayer

Ms. Kimya N. Motley is an inspirational speaker, author, and an Intimate Partner Violence subject matter expert. She serves as the Chief Executive Officer for Haven of Light International, Inc. and spearheaded the movement to revive the domestic violence task force in Newton County, Georgia. Motley now serves as its co-chairperson.

She received a Bachelor of Sciences in a dual program with the College of Family and Consumer Sciences and the College of Education from the University of Georgia. Additionally, Motley received a Master of Sciences in Counseling Psychology from The University of Missouri.

Motley’s passion is to increase safety for victims and survivors of domestic violence, enhance accountability of batterers, and make systemic changes to laws locally, nationally, and internationally – all to eliminate gender inequality. Kimya is the proud mother of Theron and Corrine and lives with her family in Covington, GA.

“I am honored and humbled to be selected as one of the Inspiring Mothers of Georgia. My children have gone through so many challenges in their lives; yet, they always persevere. Their incredible resilience inspires me to be my best for them and others. Receiving this award makes me feel like this is a win for all the moms out there striving to do their best each day to show up for the world and be a light for their families.” – Kimya Motley

Deneta Sells – Atlanta, GA – Mother | Leader | Advocate

Deneta Sells grew up in Illinois and Maryland, the oldest of four children. She graduated from Harvard College in 1992 with a degree in Sociology and received her medical degree from the University of Tennessee College Of Medicine in 2003. She completed her residency in pediatrics at the Morehouse School of Medicine. Deneta opened Intown Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine in September 2006.Deneta’s personal philosophy is to be a true “neighborhood” doctor: involved in community activities, offering convenient appointment times and after-hours advice. She is a board member of the Georgia American Academy of Pediatrics and is a founding board member of NewPower PAC, a non-partisan political action committee supporting women candidates in Georgia.

Deneta lives in Atlanta with her husband Bryan, a voting rights and election law attorney and their daughter Sarah Elizabeth. They have a large garden with chickens and bees. They enjoy sampling Atlanta’s great restaurants, supporting the Atlanta United soccer team, and going out to hear live music.

“Being selected for this award leaves me more assured of God’s grace and forgiveness. I am by no means a perfect mother, but I know I am a good one.” – Deneta Sells