Meet The Owners of Emerald Doulas

Suzanne Lee is a CAPPA Certified Postpartum Doula.

Her passion is being there for her clients during those early days of parenthood. She knows the joys and challenges of being a parent first hand and understands value in building the village that is so very important in parenthood. Trained through HUG Your Baby, she specializes in helping families with babies who make their arrivals too early, families who start their families later in life and families who have health challenges during pregnancy that require bed rest. She lives in Durham with her husband and son. In her free time she loves to read, cook, travel and hang out with her family and friends at home. Read more about Suzanne's training and experience here. 


Melanie Patrick is a CAPPA Certified Labor Doula, a trained Bereavement Doula, and CAPPA trained Postpartum Doula.

While she supports families who choose to birth using a variety of methods, or no particular method, Melanie is a Hypno-Doula; trained and experienced in both Hypnobabies® and HypnoBirthing®. Her advanced trainings include: Holding Space for Pregnancy and Loss, Spinning Babies techniques, Rebozo for relaxation and comfort, Massage for Birth, and TENS usage in labor. She has additional training in helping families get Evidence Based Birth care, and providing support for LGBTQI families. Melanie brings a calming spirit to her clients while helping them navigate through pregnancy, birth, and their early days as new parents. She has experience with couples, single parents, LGBTQ families, advanced maternal age, IVF, multiples, supporting surrogate families, VBAC & VBA2C, high risk births, families who have experienced loss or who are expecting a loss, and is available to provide faith-based support to those who request it. Melanie attends births in Durham and Chapel Hill. She loves knitting, baking, jigsaw puzzles, and spending time with her family. Read more about Melanie's training and experience here. 


Ashley Rankin Collins is a DONA International certified birth and postpartum doula, a Provisionally Certified Spinning Babies Parent Educator, an IPPA trained placenta specialist, a BirthWorks trained childbirth educator, and the only Gena Kirby Certified Rebozo Instructor in the Southeastern United States. She is also a trained Babywearing Consultant with the Center for Babywearing Studies and a certified Child Passenger Safety Technician, offering free carseat checks (by appointment, only).

Her passion is centered in helping families build connections with and to each other, and helping them establish a sense of community during this important time in their lives. Her calling to doula work came after the premature birth of her daughter, when she left a career in biochemistry to pursue birth work. In her birth work, she values a grounded, evidence-based approach to support, rooted in research. She has extensive experience supporting LGBTQ+ families, VBAC families, those recovering from previous traumatic births or life experiences, families expecting multiples, complicated or high-risk pregnancies and very premature infants. Ashley lives in Downtown Durham with her husband, daughter, and two cats. She loves to cook with local foods, hike at the Eno River, and go backpacking with her family. Ashley accepts a very limited number of birth doula clients, currently.  Read more about Ashley's training and experience here.