Leseliey Welch

Leseliey Welch, a public health leader with a business mind and a visionary heart who holds love as a guiding value, a way of being, an action, and a politic, is cofounder of Birth Detroit, Detroit’s first freestanding community birth center, and Birth Center Equity, whose mission is to grow and sustain birth centers led by Black and Indigenous people and people of color across the country. Welch has nearly two decades of leadership experience in city, state, and national health organizations. She served as interim executive director of Birthing Project USA and deputy director of public health for the city of Detroit, and consulted in the development of Michigan’s first comprehensive LGBTQ health center. Welch taught at the university level for over fifteen years, contributing to the development of Wayne State University’s bachelor of science in public health program and creating courses on numerous health equity topics for undergraduate and master’s level public health students, medical students, and medical residents. Welch also lectured in the Women’s and Gender Studies Department at the University of Michigan, developing practicum courses on women’s leadership and nonprofit management, community engagement, and feminist practice. Welch has a BA in women’s studies, an MA in public health—with a certificate in women’s and reproductive health—and an MA in business administration from the University of Michigan.