About Informed Birth Choices

IBC Company History

Informed Birth Choices was born to help the parents in Maryland and DC easily access childbirth classes and doula services.  As a social scientist, childbirth educator, doula and - most importantly - a mother Danielle knows how important the transformation to parenthood is to new moms and dads.  IBC is dedicated to assisting you in all aspects of that transition, from pregnancy to birth to parenthood, we are here to help.

After working in a top Baltimore hospital for over six years, Danielle made the switch to private practice.  With a curriculum developed over the years drawing on experience in the birth room and a strong dedication to evidence-based practice, IBC was formed.  At IBC we are determined to offer the area's best independent childbirth education classes and doula services so you are informed and prepared to take on whatever challenges pregnancy, birth or parenthood has to offer.

 

Who We Are


Danielle Koontz

Danielle Koontz

I have taught childbirth education since 2006 and have been attending births as a doula since 2007.  I feel very strongly about providing each of my students and clients with the best in evidence-based information.  As an anthropologist I am constantly observing and reflecting on the current state of maternity care in our country.  It is my hope that the work I do today will help shape better maternity choices and outcomes for my daughters and their generation.  I live in Catonsville with my husband and two daughters, where I enjoy cooking and organic gardening.

Diana Kaplan

I not only work for IBC, I am also a client! I have three children.  The first two were born in Florida, without the assistance of a doula and with all the pain medication I could get.  Before my third child was born, Danielle and I became good friends.  I was fortunate enough to have Danielle in the delivery room with me for the birth of child, and she helped me to achieve my goal of having a completely natural birth.  I enjoy working alongside Danielle and the IBC doulas to ensure the business runs smoothly.

Meet our Staff


Annie Byrd

Annie Byrd

Educating and empowering families is one of the most important aspects of what I do.  In addition to being a birth doula, postpartum doula and certified lactation counselor, I teach the infant care and breastfeeding basics at IBC.  My focus is giving research-based information in a way that is easily understood and put into practice.  It is wonderful when families feel more prepared to care for their new infant and gain practical breastfeeding tips. In addition to the work I do at IBC, I have two boys and enjoy our family life in Catonsville.

Alison Knotek

Alison Knotek

I have taught sports medicine, aerobics, and health education at the high school level for the past six years.  After the birth of my son, I made the decision to make a career change and become an advocate and teacher for women through their pregnancy and birth journey.  In addition to a degrees in Athletic Training and Exercise Science, I have trained with DONA as a Birth Doula and ICEA as a childbirth educator.  I currently teach some date offerings of the Informed Childbirth course. 

 

Client Testimonials from Happy Parents


We wouldn’t have made it without your advice! Thank you! You are surely one of our authorities when it comes to babies (delivery and care)...We are recommending the childbirth class to all of our pregnant friends.
— V.V. 2008
Happy Mother & her Child

Happy Mother & her Child

Parents and their child at an Informed Birth Choices outing.

Parents and their child at an Informed Birth Choices outing.

Our baby was born in January, and it was an amazing experience! I give a lot of credit to the Informed Birth Choices class for how prepared I was for labor. The knowledge that I had helped me to work well with my husband and midwife, and I was able to have the unmedicated birth that I wanted. I highly recommend her class!
— V.C. 2012
Danielle is honest, compassionate, and highly knowledgeable about pregnancy and childbirth. We learned so much from her classes, and truly valued the time she took not only in class, but afterwards as well, to answer all of our questions.
— J.W. 2011
Danielle and Parents at an IBC event

Danielle and Parents at an IBC event

Happy Parents with their Newborn

Happy Parents with their Newborn

I just wanted to send a note of thanks for preparing [us] to have an amazing childbirth experience. My doctor even said it was memorable because I was so well prepared, which we owe in large part to you!
— 2009

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