Our Board members hold overall fiscal and managerial oversight responsibility and supervise and provide oversight of the vision and mission of the Society. They are responsible for making decisions, delegating work, and assuring decisions are carried out in the manner intended. Ultimately, Board members serve as ambassadors for the vision and mission of the Society. The Board of Directors, committees, and working groups are essential for shaping the future of our work. We are not currently seeking new board members.
Angela Dempsey, MD, MPH


Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Ryan Residency Training Program Director, William M. Bristow Endowed Chair for Family Planning, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC

Dr. Dempsey is a leader in family planning and has made significant contributions in both undergraduate and graduate medical education as well as career mentoring. She directs a graduated Ryan training program and the Ryan Initiative in Sustainability and Engagement in which she mentors new program directors. She occupies an endowed chair in family planning with research interests that include patient-level and behavioral factors associated with choice, use, and continuation of contraception, particularly during the postpartum period. Her research has been published in Contraception, American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health among other journals. Dr. Dempsey received her medical degree from the Medical University of South Carolina. Following a residency in obstetrics and gynecology at University of Colorado, she completed a Family Planning Fellowship and Masters of Public Health at Columbia University.

Sadia Haider, MD, MPH


Vice Chair of Research and Faculty Affairs, Division Director of Family Planning, Associate Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Rush University.

Dr. Haider received her MD from the University of Chicago and her MPH in maternal and childhood health from the Harvard School of Public Health. She went on to complete her residency at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), Harvard Medical School followed by her fellowship in Family Planning at University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). As a health-services researcher, Dr. Haider has several funded studies that utilize interdisciplinary approaches to test strategies aiming to improve contraception access and provision, improving provision of Pre-exposure Prophylaxis to HIV (PrEP) for women, and identifying strategies to decrease maternal morbidity among high risk patients. She has been funded by the NIH, Society of Family Planning Research Fund, and foundations. Dr. Haider is also actively involved in educating and mentoring medical students, residents, and fellows and is an advocate for reproductive rights working to improve women’s health domestically and globally.

Anitra Beasley, MD, MPH


Associate Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs (Ben Taub Hospital), Ryan Residency Training Program Director, Baylor College of Medicine

Dr. Beasley is a practicing obstetrician-gynecologist at Baylor College of Medicine, with a focus on management of early pregnancy loss, contraception counseling in the medically complex patient, and family planning. She is a graduate of Baylor College of Medicine, where she earned her medical degree and completed residency training. Following residency, she completed a Family Planning Fellowship and obtained a Master of Public Health at Columbia University. Her research interests include access to contraception and family planning services, bias in medical care, and reduction of health disparities.

Megan Kavanaugh, DrPH, MPH


Principal Research Scientist, Guttmacher Institute

Dr. Kavanaugh’s research portfolio has focused on contraceptive use and service delivery, unintended pregnancy, and abortion. She has training in both quantitative and qualitative research methods, used in her work tracking trends in long-acting reversible contraception, examining the consequences of unintended pregnancy, and understanding the impact of travel on women seeking abortions. Dr. Kavanaugh is also affiliated with the Center for Women’s Health Research and Innovation at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Kavanaugh was a Charlotte Ellertson Social Science Postdoctoral Fellow in Abortion and Reproductive Health at the Guttmacher Institute from 2008-2010. She was awarded the Gary Stewart Scholarship for Research in Public Health by the Association of Reproductive Health Professionals in 2006, and the Distinguished Alumni Award for Early Career Excellence by the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health in 2015. She earned DrPH and MPH degrees, with specializations in behavioral and community health, and a master’s certificate in women’s studies, at the University of Pittsburgh, and a BS in bioengineering from Cornell University. In addition to SFP, Dr. Kavanaugh is a member of the American Public Health Association, and the Population Association of America.

Amanda Dennis, DrPH, MBE

Ex officio

Executive Director, Society of Family Planning

As a girl from a small town in Georgia who started out at community college, she relished every opportunity the Society offered to develop scholarship and leadership. It was the Society that supported her dissertation on the unmet health needs of women with epilepsy, a project which helped launch her independent research career and ultimately lead to thecreation of Girls With Nerve, a sexual and reproductive health website designed to inform and support teens Amanda’s passion for research that makes a difference was honed during her nine years as an Associate at Ibis Reproductive Health, where her research focused on understanding how abortion and contraception policies impactlow-income people. Her work has been published in the Society’s official journal Contraception, and in the American Journal of Public Health, Health Services Research Journal, Journal of Family Planning and Reproductive Health Care, Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health, Seizure, and Women’s Health Issues, She has also served on the board of the Abortion Care Network, and currently serves on the Advisory Board of Collective Power. Amanda first became involved with Collective Power as a student at Hampshire College, where she graduated with a BA. She also holds a Doctor of Public Health from Boston University, and a Master’s in Bioethics from the University of Pennsylvania. “My job at the Society is to see how all the different parts connect and make them hum,” says Amanda. “I weave together vision, operations, members, and partners, and it’s fantastic. What I don’t do is serve as the face or voice of the Society: that comes from our members and our board.”

Nerys Benfield, MD, MPH

Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Chief Medical Officer for Women’s Health, Interim Chief Medical Officer for Adult Services, Vice Chair for Quality and Safety, University of California, San Francisco

Nerys Benfield MD MPH is a clinician, educator, mentor, leader, and advocate for women’s health. She is a Professor of Obstetrics Gynecology and Reproductive sciences at the University of California, San Francisco where she serves as the Chief Medical Officer for Women’s Health, Interim Chief Medical Officer for Adult Services, and the Vice Chair for Quality and Safety. She was previously the Senior Associate Dean of Diversity and Inclusion, and the Director of the Division of Family Planning, the Fellowship in Family Planning, and the Social Obstetrics and Gynecology program at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine at Montefiore Medical Center. Dr. Benfield completed her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology and Fellowship in Family Planning at the University of California, San Francisco. She received her Master’s Degree in Public Health at the University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Benfield oversees the women’s health operations of the UCSF health system and works to ensure a high level of quality care, inclusive and supportive workplace and patient care environments, and a seat at the table.

Amy Bryant, MD, MSCR

Associate Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of North Carolina School of Medicine; Adjunct Associate Professor of Maternal and Child Health, University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health

Dr. Bryant is a practicing gynecologist with a sub-specialty in Complex Family Planning. She received her MD from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She completed her residency at the Albert Einstein School of Medicine/Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, and fellowship in Complex Family Planning at the University of North Carolina, where she also received her Masters of Science in Clinical Research at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. She currently serves as Director of the Complex Family Planning Fellowship at UNC, and the interim director of the Complex Family Planning Division, and teaches at the Gillings School of Global Public Health. Her research focuses on lactation and contraception, abortion misinformation, and abortion access. Dr. Bryant leads the 3rd year clerkship in Ob-gyn at UNC. She is actively involved in educating and mentoring medical students, residents, and fellows and is an advocate for reproductive freedom working to improve women’s health, particularly in North Carolina.

Catherine Cansino, MD, MPH

Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of California, Davis School of Medicine

Dr. Cat Cansino is a complex family planning specialist who provides full spectrum reproductive healthcare at University of California Davis Health System. She earned her medical training at University of Toledo. She then completed her Obstetrics and Gynecology residency, Master of Public Health degree, and CFP fellowship at Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Cansino has worked in many different practice settings including Native American/American Indian health, global health, and academic medicine. She focuses her activism on reproductive justice, health equity, and inclusion in medicine.

Blair Darney, PhD, MPH

Associate Professor, Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Division of Complex Family Planning (CFP), Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU); Associate Professor, Health Systems & Policy, Portland State University-OSHU School of Public Health; Investigadora Honoraria, Instituto Nacional de Salud Publica, México; Investigadora Reconocida, CISIDAT (Health Research Consortium), México.

Dr. Darney is a reproductive health services researcher. She earned her PhD from the University of Washington School of Public Health, completed an AHRQ post-doctoral position, and worked for the Mexican government for several years in the Instituto Nacional de Salud Publica. Her work focuses on access, utilization, and outcomes of maternal, contraception, and abortion services. Dr. Darney has an active program of research in Mexico where her work and collaborations focus on abortion, adolescent birth, and contraception. In the US, she leads studies focused on access, utilization, and quality of contraceptive services in safety net clinics in the US and reproductive health outcomes among Latina immigrants. Her areas of expertise include quasi-experimental designs and causal inference, leveraging diverse multi-level data sources, measuring quality of care, appropriate comparison groups, health systems, and immigration and health policies. Dr. Darney is committed to building research capacity through mentorship of diverse learners in the US and Mexico and collaboration across disciplines. In addition to serving on the Society Board, Dr. Darney serves as a Deputy Editor at Contraception, serves on institutional, federal, and private grant review committees, and is a member of the Secretariado (akin to a Board) of CISIDAT, a health research non-profit in Mexico. Dr. Darney is dedicated to fostering global individual, institutional, and governmental relations; she served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Senegal after college and is currently a Garcia-Robles COMEXUS/Fulbright scholar in Mexico City.

Aileen Gariepy, MD, MPH, MHS

Associate Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, Associate Chief of Section of Family Planning, Director of the Family Planning Fellowship, Yale School of Medicine

Dr. Gariepy completed an obstetrics and gynecology residency at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, and Fellowship in Family Planning at the University of Pittsburgh. She earned a Masters of Public Health degree from the University of Pittsburgh and a Masters of Health Science from Yale School of Medicine. Her research focuses on developing and testing innovative, multi-faceted strategies for decreasing unintended pregnancy in marginalized populations, with specific focus on female sterilization, the effect of unintended pregnancy on women, cost and contraceptive provision, and digital health interventions to improve reproductive health. Her research has been funded by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), National Institutes of Health, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Society of Family Planning Research Fund, and private foundations. She serves as Secretary of the Executive Committee and Chair of the Research Review Committee for the Complex Family Planning Fellowship.

Alisa Goldberg, MD, MPH

Associate Professor, Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biology, Harvard Medical School; Director, Division of Family Planning and Family Planning Fellowship, Brigham and Women’s Hospital; Vice President, Research and Clinical Training, Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts

Alisa Goldberg, MD, MPH received her MD degree from Harvard Medical School and completed residency training in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) in Boston. She completed a Family Planning Fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and received a Masters in Public Health (MPH) degree from the University of California, Berkeley. While at UCSF, she served as Medical Director of the Women’s Options Center at San Francisco General Hospital and an NICHD Women’s Reproductive Health Research (WRHR) Scholar. Upon returning to Boston, she founded and currently directs the Division of Family Planning and Family Planning Fellowship program at BWH and similarly founded and directs the Department of Research at Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts (PPLM). She has served as the Chair of the Clinical Policies Committee for the Board of the National Abortion Federation and currently serves as the Chair of the Complex Family Planning Executive Council. Her research has focused on the use of mifepristone and misoprostol for abortion care, increasing post-abortion contraceptive utilization and evaluating clinical interventions that can both improve the quality of abortion and contraceptive care as well as expand access. Mentoring bright young physicians who choose to dedicate their careers to this work brings her much professional joy. She was recently recognized for this work with the 2019 Society of Family Planning Mentor Award.

Bhavik Kumar, MD, MPH

Medical Director – Primary & Trans Care, Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast; National Medical Spokesperson, Planned Parenthood Federation of America

Dr. Kumar (he/him) is a board-certified Family Medicine physician practicing in Houston, Texas. He completed medical school at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, residency in Family & Social Medicine at Montefiore Medical Center, and a Fellowship in Family Planning at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He is a founding member of Centering Equity, Race, and Cultural Literacy in Family Planning (CERCL-FP). His clinical services include comprehensive family planning care, including abortion, primary care, and gender care. He is an outspoken advocate for abortion and trans care in the media and the courts. His research interests center on highlighting the effects of oppressive laws and policies impacting access to healthcare in Texas. As a gay man of color, Dr. Kumar works to highlight the intersections of queer and reproductive rights. He approaches his work with an anti-racist lens and aims to disrupt systems that have historically marginalized minoritized peoples.

Kate Shaw, MD, MS

Associate Professor, Chief of Gynecology and Gynecologic Specialties, Associate Chair of Education, Director for Fellowship in Complex Family Planning, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Stanford University School of Medicine

Dr. Kate Shaw (she/her) is a Complex Family Planning specialist clinician, researcher, educator, and mentor. She completed ObGyn Residency at Oregon Health and Science University and a Fellowship in Family Planning and Masters in Epidemiology and Clinical Research at Stanford. Her clinical research focuses on understanding and improving people’s experience while decreasing barriers to abortion and contraception with a focus on second-trimester abortion and procedural pain. Her research has been published in Contraception, American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Obstetrics & Gynecology, and the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. BMJ Sexual & Reproductive Health is heavily cited and has been incorporated into clinical guidelines.  Dr. Shaw leads mentorship and medical education programs for medical student, residents, fellows, faculty, and more. She is passionate about ensuring training and education of future abortion providers, researchers, and leaders to continue to continue the work towards just and equitable abortion and contraception.

Terri-Ann Thompson, PhD

Senior Research Scientist, Ibis Reproductive Health

Terri-Ann Thompson (she/her), PhD is a Senior Research Scientist at Ibis Reproductive Health (Ibis). At Ibis, Dr. Thompson leads a portfolio focused on the impact of policies such as the Hyde Amendment and innovative care models such as telehealth on access to abortion and contraception in the United States. She uses frameworks such as community-based participatory research and community-engaged research to highlight and propose strategies to address disparities in sexual and reproductive health. Previously, Dr. Thompson worked for Yale University School of Medicine directing a global health disparities study in the eastern Caribbean focused on identifying risk factors for non-communicable diseases. In 2022, Dr. Thompson was named a fellow in Rockwood’s Fellowship for leaders in Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice. Dr. Thompson holds a doctorate in public health from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and BA in psychology from Macalester College. In addition to SFP, Dr. Thompson is a member of Academy Health and the American Public Health Association.

Crystal P. Tyler, PhD, MPH

Chief Health Officer, Rhia Ventures

Crystal Pirtle Tyler PhD, MPH is the Chief Health Officer at Rhia Ventures, where she translates the needs of the women and birthing people most affected by systemic inequity into programming that fosters equitable reproductive health products and services. Most recently, Dr. Tyler served as the Executive Director of Ci3 at the University of Chicago, a research center addressing the social and structural determinants of adolescent reproductive health and wellbeing through design, storytelling, play, and policy change. Dr. Tyler began her career at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta first as an Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer then as an Epidemiologist within the Division of Reproductive Health. There she served as a subject matter expert on adolescent sexual and reproductive health, and the translation of research to public health and clinical practice. From CDC, Dr. Tyler moved on to become the Director of the Michigan Public Health Institute’s Center for Child and Family Health where she implemented systems level improvements to promote equity in the quality and availability of public health services. She has published on topics such as contraceptive safety and use, adolescent sexual and reproductive health, reproductive cancers, birth defects, and infant mortality. Dr. Tyler completed both her PhD and MPH in Epidemiology, at Michigan State University and the University of Michigan, respectively, and her Bachelor’s degree in Women’s Studies at Spelman College.

The Society strives for just and equitable abortion and contraception informed by science. This work relies on a community of people united by this vision. That said, participation in this community, as a Board, Committee, or Working Group member, or any of our programs, do not represent the Society unless specifically designated to do so. Participation in the Society does not signal Society endorsement of statements, opinions, research, or actions.

Committees, Subcommittees, and Working Groups

Committees, subcommittees, and working groups are essential for shaping the future of our work and each have a distinct responsibility.