Commonsense Childbirth Inc. Board

Board Members

Chair: Chelsea Johnson
Vice Chair: Stephen Facella
Treasurer: Kenneth Zepeda
Secretary: Maddy Oden
Director: Rafael Mendez
Director: Pandora Hardtman

Dr. Deanna Wathington

Chief Executive Officer

We are so excited to welcome Dr. Wathington to the team as Chief Executive Officer at Commonsense Childbirth Inc. Deanna brings such vast and rich experience to support the mission, vision and forward trajectory of our organization and we couldn’t be more thankful for her willingness to join us. She is committed to see our organization grow and for our reach to expand nationally and ultimately, globally. Welcome Dr Wathington.

Dr. Wathington brings over 30 years of practice and academic experience in the field with emphasis on collaboration across multiple sectors to address and optimize community health, equity, and diversity issues. Her work and scholarly efforts have centered on health equity, clinical-community linkages, women’s health, infant mortality disparities, equitable community development, community health initiatives, and expanding diversity within the health professions. She previously served as Dean of the College of Health Sciences (Bethune-Cookman University), Associate Dean for Academic and Student Affairs (University of South Florida College of Public Health), Associate Dean for Academic Enrichment (USF College of Medicine) and as the Director of Minority Health for the Florida Department of Health. She is currently an Affiliate Professor in the College of Public Health (USF Health) and the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of South Florida.


Dr. Wathington recently completed her term as chair of the Executive Board of the American Public Health Association in October 2021. She currently serves as a member of the National Academies (of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine) Committee on Gulf Health and Resilience, the USP Health Equity Advisory Group, and the National Partnership for Women and Families Listening to Mothers Advisory Group. She previously served on the US Department of Health and Human Services National Partnership for Action Region IV Southeastern Health Equity Council. She is a member of the founding editorial board of the Journal of Healthcare Transformation. Dr. Wathington earned her medical degree from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey – New Jersey Medical School (now known as Rutgers University – New Jersey Medical School), Master of Public Health (MPH) from Temple University, baccalaureate in Zoology and Physiology from Rutgers University. She completed residency training in Family Medicine at JFK Medical Center, NJ and Bayfront Medical Center, FL. She was awarded the distinction of Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians. She has served as principal investigator/co-investigator on federal, state, county, and foundation grants. Her scholarly work includes peer-reviewed articles, abstracts, books, book chapters, and panel reports. She is co-editor of Black Women in Public Health: Strategies to Name, Locate, and Change Systems of Power published by SUNY Press and available in February 2022. Dr. Wathington is the recipient of an AAMC GIA Award of Excellence, the DHPE Health Promotion and Advocacy award (2017), and a 2020 Florida Outstanding Woman in Public Health award (2020).