Midwife Biography

Dena Moes, CNM, grew up in West Hollywood, CA. She attended Yale College where she received a B.A. in Literature and Women’s Studies. After college she moved to New York City where she worked, explored the vast cultural resources of city life and pondered her life's purpose. At the age of twenty-three a friend placed a copy of Ina May Gaskin’s Spiritual Midwifery in her hands. By the time she finished reading it Dena knew her life's purpose was to be a midwife.

Dena first became a doula and she volunteered her services at North Central Bronx Hospital. She provided labor support for uninsured, recent immigrants from Africa, Haiti, Central America and Albania. She saw certified nurse-midwives run a busy labor and delivery unit with record-breaking low cesarean rates and excellent outcomes. She then attended Yale University School of Nursing's three-year program in nurse-midwifery. She received her RN in 1995 and her MSN in 1996, the same year she was certified in nurse-midwifery by the American College of Nurse Midwives. During her training Dena studied with a homebirth midwife who served the Old Order Amish in rural Pennsylvania. She spent a semester living in an Amish farmhouse where she attended thirty homebirths in a culture in which homebirth is the norm and birth is understood as a normal part of farm life.

Since 1996 Dena has served birthing families in a variety of settings.

Family Travel

After graduation Dena worked as a midwife in a small town in Kansas where she attended almost every birth that happened in two rural hospitals over one year. She and her husband Adam then moved to the Santa Cruz area where Adam studied Traditional Chinese Medicine. In Santa Cruz she worked as a labor and delivery nurse for two years as well as provided primary care, gynecology, and family planning in a women's clinic. Dena's first daughter, Clarabel, was born at home in Santa Cruz.

Dena and her family moved to the Chico area in early 2002. She worked as a midwife for Paradise Midwifery Service at Feather River Hospital until her second daughter Sophia was born. By this time, Dena had attended about two hundred births. When her second daughter turned two, she knew the time for her homebirth practice had come. In 2005, Sacred Ways Homebirth was born. Dena has been honored to attend the births of over two hundred Chico-area babies since opening her practice.

In addition to her passion for midwifery, Dena is a singer/songwriter. Her family spends many weeks each summer camping. They divide their time between remote wilderness areas and music festivals, where they can be found perforning uplifting, conscious folk music as The Moes Family Band.  Check out the band here : https://www.facebook.com/MoesFamilyBand/  Dena and her family spent most of 2014 traveling through India, Nepal, and Thailand. Dena has written a book about their journey, and you can follow the book's road to publication at denamoes.com . Also visit the Midwife's Desk on Facebook for more information about Dena.

Beginning in the spring of 2016, Dena is taking a break from providing home birth services. For information on what she is up to now, visit the blog at http://www.chicomidwife.blogspot.com  and her new website http://www.denamoes.com