Meet our staff of childbirth and parenting professionals.

Tricia Cassi is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC). Tricia joined Beginnings in 1995 as a childbirth education instructor and currently teaches breastfeeding classes. Tricia is the State Breastfeeding Coordinator for the Vermont Department of Health WIC Program and also works as an outpatient Lactation Consultant for the Obstetrics and Midwifery Service at the University of Vermont Medical Center. She was accredited as a La Leche League leader in 1994 and organizes the annual Vermont Lactation Consultant Association Professional Lactation Conference. Tricia is the mother of four children.


Hannah Christiansen joined Beginnings in 2014, and is the Director. Hannah is a CAPPA certified Childbirth Education and Labor Doula. She also teaches Baby Basics and Sibling Preparation classes. Hannah is the mother of two very busy children, and a baker who runs the business Moonshadow Sweets. Hannah holds a BA in theater arts and a teaching license/Masters in K-12 Theater Arts education and has taught theater to children of all ages.  Hannah lives in Williston with her husband, two children, and their dog, cat and guinea pig.



Lorraine Rigutto is an ICEA certified instructor who has been teaching childbirth classes since 1994. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and currently works in the school environment providing support to children with behavioral and developmental needs. Lorraine lives in Huntington with her husband and three children.




Ara Finlayson is a CAPPA certified Childbirth Educator and Labour Doula, and is delighted to bring her passion for pregnancy and childbirth to Beginnings. As a mother of two small children, she understands how nervous expectant parents can be – as well as how a positive birth experience can be a wonderful, empowering and life changing event for both the mother and her partner. Ara works at a local marketing agency, lives in Burlington with her husband, two kiddos and neurotic cat, teaches rock climbing in her spare time and gets out into the mountains whenever possible.

Amy Young is a labor and delivery nurse at the University of Vermont Medical Center and former elementary school teacher who joined Beginnings in 2014. She facilitates a support group for families coping with pregnancy and infant loss, and has also worked as a Clinical Instructor for junior students in the University of Vermont's Nursing program. Amy lives in Burlington with her husband and four children.

Our Pediatric CPR classes are taught by instructors from Northeast Emergency Training Solutions that provides CPR classes for the Chittenden County area.  All of the instructors – Stephen, Jason, Tim and Andrew - are firefighter-EMT’s who collectively have numerous years of experience teaching infant and adult CPR.