Need IBCLC Mentoring?

Mentoring and consulting with aspiring and established lactation professionals

Hi, I'm Shelly Taft

I’m a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN), Doula, and International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC). Based in Worcester County, MA. I’ve been supporting new families in Massachusetts and Rhode Island since 2007.

Helping families meet their feeding goals is one of my passions. Another thing about which I am deeply passionate is connecting with aspiring IBCLCs and established lactation professionals. Just like the parents and families with which lactation professionals work, we are not meant to go it alone. The steps to certification can seem daunting. Establishing and running a private practice can seem like a mystery. My goal is to pull back the curtain, to help fellow professionals gain insight into and to learn about my journey and to hopefully learn from some of my mistakes and successes to make their journeys smoother.

When I am not assisting other professionals and families 1:1, you can find me teaching childbirth, breastfeeding, and TummyTime! classes at various hospitals and sites in the Worcester County area. Outside of providing families with judgement-free support, I love crossfit training, concurring obstacle course races, buying books I will never read, and knitting. I look forward to connecting with you soon!

Are you interested in being an invaluable asset to families that are trying to navigate the waters of feeding their babies?

A well-trained and qualified lactation professional offers reassuring feeding and support to parents when breastfeeding, chest feeding, and lactation are going well and provides information and support to help prevent and manage common concerns or troubles parents face.

IBCLCs help with:

  • Prenatal counseling about the factors that may affect breastfeeding and lactation

  • Basic position and latch of the infant

  • Information about practices that promote successful breastfeeding and lactation.

  • Preventing and managing common concerns such as poor latch, inadequate milk transfer or supply, nipple or breast pain, and calming a fussy baby
  • Breastfeeding and lactation in challenging situations, such as feeding twins or triplets, a premature or sick infant, or infants in special medical situations

Are you ready to explore the pathways to certification? Let's meet to discuss!

You don't have to navigate the road to certification in darkness.

I have a flashlight and can help guide your way!

Navigating the waters of IBCLE

Decoding the different pathways through IBLCE can be very confusing. Depending on the pathway you choose, you might also need to mentor with an experienced IBCLC before qualifying for the exam.

If you have questions about the different pathways and how to choose the right one for you, or about the credentialing process in general, I’d be happy to help. I now offer 30-minute and 60-minute consults for aspiring IBCLCs, both in-person (for those local to me) or via phone/teleconference. Schedule your time with me!

I am deeply passionate about doing my part to further enhance the lactation field through mentoring future board certified lactation consultants!

Working with Aspiring IBCLCs

I offer a mentoring program for aspiring IBCLCs local to me.

If you are interested in my mentoring program, please submit the form below.

Please note that I often have a waiting list.

Meet my current mentees!

Hi, I'm Phoebe Heffron

I am honored to have the opportunity to mentor with Shelly Taft, as I am currently completing my certification to become an IBCLC. I received my Pediatric Nurse Practitioner degree from Yale University. Before starting my family, I worked as a PNP in Lowell, MA. Raising my own children piqued my interest in maternal healthcare.

I have four children under ten. While I have enjoyed breastfeeding our children, I realize that every woman is different and that each family has unique needs and challenges. I want to help support your family, provide insight and tips from my experience, and give tailored advice to the demands of your situation.

When I’m not working, I enjoy attending my kids’ sporting events (hockey, soccer, etc.), playing sports myself, playing the piano, and baking elaborate cakes.

I look forward to working with you and your family!

Hi, I'm Rebecca Andrews

I am a registered nurse and certified lactation counselor (CLC). I joined Shelly's team as an intern as I work to obtain clinical hours to sit for my lactation consultant board exam. I enjoy learning from Shelly as she offers a more comprehensive approach to your family's needs. I appreciate that your family has unique needs and feeding goals and I hope to help you meet your desired feeding plan.
My interest in breastfeeding stems from my desire to help families in what may be a very stressful situation. As someone who was once struggling to breastfeed my own children, I understand how important it is to have a calm, knowledgeable and empathetic person in your support system. While I continue to learn the intricacies of breastfeeding, I aim to offer you all the individualized support you need.
When I am not in the office with Shelly, I work as a lactation counselor at UMass Memorial and an ICU RN, also at UMass. Other than that, I enjoy spending time with my two children, my husband, and our dog. My other interests include quilting and hiking. 
Thank you for letting me be a part of your support system!”