Published on 9th May 2019

In celebration of Mother’s Day, we partnered with renowned photographer, Brock Elbank, to create a stunning series of portraits that challenge outdated depictions of motherhood.

Time and again we hear women tell us that the word ‘mother’ is too small to define them. Being a mom is an important part of many women’s lives, but it’s not the only aspect and it’s important that we celebrate women on an individual level - their successes, their strengths, and their passions, in motherhood and beyond.

We’re sharing the inspiring personal stories of 12 women that take pride in their role as mothers, as well as their diverse identities and passions alongside motherhood. From an engineer working to make the world a more sustainable place to a breast cancer survivor who is also a mentor for the transgender community, every woman and mother has a story to tell.

Rachel Nicks Lyons

An actress, fitness trainer and doula, Rachel is a role model for every multi-passionate mother. With the support of her own mother, husband and supportive circle of friends and family she is able to commute between her home in New York City and Chicago, where she is performing in Hamlet. In fact, Rachel’s career is busier than ever since having Samuel Otis 18 months ago! When not acting, Rachel brings her infectious and fun attitude to her classes for MIRROR, as well as her work as a doula, empowering new moms. Rachel is proud to be in a PSA for Every Mother Counts about maternal health. Rachel is passionate about advocating for the maternal health of black women, which is often tragically neglected.

Sarah Gartenberg

Despite working as a mechanical design engineer in a male-dominated industry, Sarah comes from a family of female engineers, including her mother, aunts and cousins. A mother of two boys, Sarah studied at night to gain her master's degree in sustainability while working full-time. Sarah is passionate about making the world a better and more environmentally conscious place by ensuring that the buildings she designs, including large healthcare and education facilities, are built for a more sustainable future.

Joanne Mercedes Fernandez-Booker

Joanne is a pediatrician who is passionate about public health. She works in schools in the most disadvantaged areas of NYC that have some of the highest rates of childhood asthma and teenage pregnancy in the country. Many of the children and families that she helps live in shelters and don’t have access to modern amenities such as a telephone. Joanne is an advocate for health equity and firmly believes that your zip code shouldn’t determine your health outcome - every child should have an equal opportunity to succeed. As a first generation Latina who was born and brought up in NYC, Joanne identifies and connects with the multicultural families she works with. Joanne has studied for the last 12 years to become a pediatrician and recently returned to her job at the NYC Department of Health after taking three months of maternity leave for her first child.

Nicole Guliano

Nicole is a public defender in Manhattan helping some of the most underprivileged people in the city navigate the complicated criminal justice system. Nicole stands for impoverished people charged with a variety of crimes often at the most desperate times of their lives. She is fighting for people who aren’t able to advocate for themselves. One of Nicole’s career dreams for the future is to open her own legal practice. Nicole is also a first-time mom to a beautiful baby girl, Lona.

Chloe Melas

Chloe is an entertainment reporter for CNN. Since the birth of Chloe’s first baby Leo two years ago, Chloe’s reporting has focused more on the #MeToo movement and Hollywood. Chloe broke the story around Kevin Spacey only weeks after returning from maternity leave and later published investigations on Morgan Freeman and a producer at CBS. Chloe is passionate about being able to give a voice to the voiceless through her work. She wants to continue to focus her reporting on women’s issues including harassment, discrimination and parity. Chloe is currently seven months pregnant with her second son.

Latham Thomas

Latham Thomas (a.k.a. Glow Maven) is a leader in the wellness/lifestyle arena and birth doula. Named one of Oprah Winfrey’s Super Soul 100, Latham is leading a revolution in radical self-care teaching women everywhere to own their power and “mother themselves first”. She is the founder of Mama Glow, a lifestyle brand and women’s center in Brooklyn, NY, offering inspiration, education, and holistic services for expectant and new mothers. A graduate of Columbia University, Latham serves on the TUFTS University Nutrition Council as well as their board for Entrepreneurship. She is also a two-time best-selling author. Along with these amazing achievements, Latham is mother to 15-year-old son Fulano. 

Mica Henderson

Mica is currently a social worker studying for her PhD. A mother to five, Mica has lived, and worked in NYC, London, Tokyo and Chicago and now settled back in New York City. Mica is passionate about supporting the transgender youth of today, who tragically have the highest suicide rates amongst their peer group. Mica is in the early stages of establishing a mentoring programme for transgender and GNC teenagers and pre-teens. Mica has successfully sought to educate not only those who work with children, but also the wider community, about supporting and affirming the transgender community in New York City and in Tokyo. Mica’s ultimate goal is to save lives through spreading awareness of this incredible, but often ignored, community. 

Jasmine Katatikarn

Jasmine is a senior lighting artist and published author in the animation field, which is more than 80% male. She has worked on a number of feature films including Ice Age, Peanuts and Rio. Although now a mother of two, Jasmine struggled with her own fertility issues and was given a less than 1% chance of having children, which spurred the launch of a social media channel following her personal journey. Jasmine wants to empower women to pursue their passions, teaching them to overcome obstacles using a designer’s mindset. Despite working harder now than ever before, Jasmine feels she does so with greater purpose. Jasmine’s hopes to prove that you don’t have to decide between work and motherhood: you can do both very successfully by designing your own perfectly imperfect life.

Chemmy Alcott

As a four-time Winter Olympian, a seven-time British National Overall Champion and the only British female skier to ever win a run in a World Cup, Chemmy is widely regarded as one of Britain’s greatest ever skiers. Now retired from competitive skiing, Chemmy continues to constantly push her body to the limit, competing in multiple physical challenges including the World’s Toughest Ski Race in Greenland, the 100-mile road race in London and climbing Mt Kilimanjaro, raising over £800,000 for charity in the process. Chemmy is committed to inspiring the next generation and educating people from all over the world: from school pupils to businesses, she helps give them the confidence to create big dreams and do everything humanly possible to achieve them. Chemmy is a mother of two boys, two-year-old Locki and newborn Cooper. 

Eboni Wyllie

Eboni is a registered nurse at the NYP Children’s Hospital of NYC, working in the pediatric intensive care unit. Growing up working with children at summer camps, it was then she decided she wanted to go into nursing as she wanted the opportunity to make a difference to children's lives. She has just returned to work after having her first child Mackenzie, who is now seven months old. Working night shifts and caring for her baby in the day has been “very double-duty” but Eboni loves her job and she couldn’t wait to get back to work. Eboni has just a year and a half left of studying to become a nurse practitioner, which is a long term goal of hers.

Elizabeth Sutton

Elizabeth is a millennial 'mom-preneur' and fine artist who has taken the nouveau arts scene by storm. Her artwork is aimed at promoting female empowerment and good vibes. Born and raised in Brooklyn, NY, Elizabeth is a single mom to two children, Miro and Nora. Despite weathering a divorce when her second child was just three weeks old, she has achieved a huge amount since launching her business. Elizabeth has her own line of clutch bags and has also had a number of incredibly successful collaborations with brands including Joe and The Juice, Bari Lynn Accessories, and TileBar. Driven by her passion and love for art, Elizabeth is focussed on growing her artistic and design empire. 

Laura Lane

Laura worked as a magazine editor and writer for eight years before moving into comedy full-time. She started performing in 2013 with a sketch show about dating, which in turn led to a podcast, a book deal and a TV show titled ‘This Is Why You’re Single.’ Her most recent sketch show called ‘Femme Fairy Tales’ has led to a second book deal which will be released in March 2020. A first-time mother of nine-month-old Rilo, Laura worked through her entire pregnancy, performing on stage up until just six days before she gave birth. She was back on stage two months after Rilo was born and continued to work on her book to meet deadlines. Laura now splits her time between caring for Rilo and working on movie, TV and other comedy projects.

Get social and join us in celebrating mothers in all their glory by sharing a photo of yourself with #AMotherAndMore to tell the world who you are - as a mother and a woman. Don’t forget to tag us (@elvie) so that we can see it!