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Member’s Spotlight!

The CFAS is shining the spotlight on members who make a difference and contribute to the betterment of the society and the field!

Eileen McMahon, NP

Eileen McMahon

1) What got you interested in the field of fertility?

My mother was an exceptional, highly regarded, and incredibly caring Labour and Delivery nurse and I fell in love with Obstetrics and Gynaecology through her example. I ended up working for a few Ob-Gyn MDs in high school and one of them had an infertility practice which I found  very interesting. As a nurse, I worked in Labour and Delivery, Gynecology, and Sexual Assault and eventually made my way into the exciting world of Fertility as a Nurse Practitioner!

2) Describe a regular day in your shoes:

Wake up at the crack of dawn to get myself and three young children ready for the day, get everyone where they need to be and then begin my work day. A typical work day consists of clinical work (ie. performing endometrial biopsies, seeing fertility preservation patients such as patients with cancer or gender diverse individuals prior to or in conjunction with gender affirmation treatment, or seeing cancer survivors who are interested in their ovarian function status) and leadership activities (ie. committee work, quality improvement initiatives, policy and procedure work, professional development).

3) What’s the biggest difficulty that you encounter?

I would say having to tell someone who survived cancer that their likelihood of having a genetically linked child is extremely low. Many patients were not offered the opportunity to preserve their fertility before treatment and when we see them as survivors and they are in premature ovarian failure, the conversation is a very difficult one. But focusing on the options that are available to them does help.

4) What keeps you going?

I love the work and I love the people. It is an honour to work with an incredible team and to care for fertility patients. There is literally never a dull moment in the field of REI!

5) What do you like most about the CFAS?

I am a standardization and best practice enthusiast so I find working on CFAS projects like the nurse competency project and Choosing Wisely, as well as Clinical Practice Guidelines and being active in the executive committees of the nursing and fertility preservation special interest groups as well as a Board of Directors member very fulfilling.

6) How does the CFAS provide value to your professional development?

Being part of the Society keeps me current and engaged. I find benefit in the educational sessions (webinars, annual meetings, regional meetings, newsletters, members portal), refer to the publications (guidelines, position statements) regularly, and I like to meet and work with leaders in the field.

7) Why do you volunteer your time to the Society? What’s in it for you?

I love the networking and camaraderie that comes with it but I find the real benefit is the reciprocal sharing and gaining of knowledge.

8) Tell us something most people don’t know about you:

I won a proficiency award for French in Grade 8!


Sara Cohen, LLB

Sara Cohen

1) What got you interested in the field of fertility

I have always been interested in this area. I had the good fortune of working at one of Toronto’s clinics when I was a student, and followed up by spending a summer at Princeton University’s Office of Population Research, working on some related policies. When in law school, I took every course available that I could and made it about fertility and the law. Finally, I had a lot of empathy for people who wanted to be a parent and struggled to do so. I feel very fortunate to be able to assist people in such a special and meaningful way.

2) Describe a regular day in your shoes

Putting out a lot of fires! Chatting with intended parents early in the morning and late in the evening, talking with the clinics, working on a lecture or a presentation, and many, many emails!

3) What’s the biggest difficulty that you encounter?

The law is slow to change, and lags behind both technology and social development. It is frustrating!

4) What keeps you going?

I feel privileged to witness and play a small role in the beautiful relationships between the gestational carriers and the intended parents, and the donors and the parents. The collaborative nature of this type of family building is extremely touching.

5) What do you like most about the CFAS?

I love how CFAS has grown by leaps and bounds, and is doing more and more to include a multidisciplinary outlook!

6) How does the CFAS provide value to your professional development?

It provides wonderful learning opportunities

7) Why do you volunteer your time to the Society? What’s in it for you?

I believe it is very important for the fertility community to come together to develop best practices, to keep on learning and growing and to learn from each other. CFAS is the best way to do this.

8) Tell us something most people don’t know about you

I can read Middle Egyptian Hieroglyphs