St. Lawrence Health's Obstetric and Gynecological team enjoys getting to know all of their patients. We thought you might like to know a little about them as well, and hear straight from them why they decided to go into this particular field of medicine.
Laurie Brown, RN, NP
"I chose the field of OBGYN because I believe women in our communities appreciate having a female perspective when it comes to issues related to women’s health and wellness."
"I was born and raised in the Gouverneur area, and for the past 40 have been working in the healthcare system. It is my goal to provide continuity and quality care for the women in our communities."
Megan Gagner, DNP, CNM
"I was born and raised in St. Lawrence County; it is my home. I left briefly for a couple years for a midwife position and returned in 2020 for a position here. I didn’t choose OBGYN, it chose me. When I became a mother, I became fascinated with pregnancy and childbirth, and how a human body can create another human."
"I wanted to further my education for my family; to set an example of hard work and dedication to my children. I wanted to provide a better opportunity for them. Now that I am a midwife I can share my experience and education with other women: to help them find confidence and to empower them in their bodies and minds; to help them feel reassured and safe; and to encourage them to do the best they can."
Barbara Drake Hills, MSN, CNM
"I have always loved taking care of people, but having been well-cared for by midwives during my pregnancies and births sealed the deal for me. I birthed four beautiful daughters into the gentle hands of midwives in my community. I also learned during that time that midwives provide care for women from first periods through menopause and beyond. I felt practicing midwifery would allow me to provide care to whole families. Plus I love babies, and seeing the joy on their parents' faces when they first meet their newborns."
"When applying for a widwifery position in August 2010, my husband and I decided to give the North Country a try. We fell in love with the beauty of the area and the changes of the seasons. The families here have been welcoming and appreciative of the care I can provide."
Laurie Mousaw, CNM
"I chose to enter OB when I was working as a Registered Nurse. I loved working with labor patients, but I was disappointed when I had to leave them at the end of my shift. I decided to go back to school to become a Certified Nurse Midwife and be able to actually help deliver the babies."
"I have worked at Canton-Potsdam Hospital since 1981, when I started working here as a Nurse Aid while I was attending nursing school."
Noelle Polniak, NP
"I chose OBGYN because I have a strong history of woman’s health problems in my own family. I want to provide care to women as if they are my own mother, sister, or grandmother. I love my job!"
"I am from the North Country, and I can't say enough about the quaint and loving community we have here. To me, there is no more rewarding way to provide care than in the area where I grew up. I feel you build even bigger relationships with your patients while working in a small town."
Tara Swinwood, NP
“The decision to work in OBGYN was one of the best decisions I have made in my professional career. As a woman myself, I am able to understand and relate to women’s health care needs. I strive to provide the best possible care for women here in St. Lawrence County."
"Having been born and raised in Lisbon, NY, there is no place I would rather live and work than right here in the beautiful North Country. I hope to empower women to take care of themselves, and their health care needs, so they can be at their very own personal best.”