Our Staff


Shannon M. Rudder, MBA
Executive Director

"As a former single mother of a wonderful thirteen-year-old daughter, I can wholeheartedly relate to the mission and phenomenal work of MotherWoman. I have been extremely fortunate to have been surrounded by an outstanding “village” of support. This support has made all the difference in my life—both personally and professionally. When I recall the challenges life has afforded me, I am always reminded of the victories because of this support. For this very reason, I look forward to fostering support for others through the advancement of MotherWoman’s continued important work.”

Full Bio

Annette Cycon, LICSW
Founder, MotherWoman
Director of Training

“When I became a mother I realized that all my professional experience did not prepare me for the massive change that motherhood made in every area of my life.

So I started to gather mothers together in groups to have facilitated conversations about the massive PERSONAL experience that motherhood is, from hope and anticipation to the dismantling of life as we knew it to the creation of a new SELF and what we  have heard many moms call “the new Normal”. I began to develop a support group model in which mothers felt safe enough to share what was really going on for them and which invited a diversity of mothers to find common ground and build community. That was the beginning of MotherWoman.”

Full Bio

Liz Friedman, MFA
Program Director
Founder, Postpartum Support Initiati

“I want for my daughter what I want for ALL of us. That she will be heard when she speaks her own truths as a woman and, if she chooses, as a mother. MotherWoman is the place where we do this with each other and for each other. MotherWoman is the home where ALL mothers can speak our truths and make the changes we know are essential for ourselves, our children and our world.”

Full Bio

Brandee Simone
Development Officer

"Becoming a mother was a life-changing experience, the magnitude of which has been immeasurable. When you go through such a momentous transformation, it is easy to feel like you’re the only one who has ever felt so deeply; who has ever felt the paradox of being both completely drained and incredibly fulfilled, simultaneously. That’s why I believe MotherWoman’s mission is so powerful – by giving women a place to speak their truths and share their experiences with other mothers, to be received with compassion rather than judgement, the transformative nature of motherhood is supported and strengthened. The validation of knowing you’re not alone, that what you are feeling is normal, can make all the difference in the world."

Full Bio


Shelly Smith, MPH
Program Manager

"As a mother of two young girls it thrills me to see such amazing people working together to empower other women just like me. Having recently moved to Massachusetts from Alabama I also understand the importance of a strong support network. All mothers deserve to feel strength and support from her community. Knowing there are people working in the best interest of you and your family can really provide a mother with the hope she needs. I am so grateful to be a part of this wonderful organization and to know I can help make a difference in other mom’s lives"

Full Bio