About the WHRL
The Women’s Health Resource Library (WHRL) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization focused on advancing and promoting the health and well-being of the woman, her family, and her community.
in 2004 by nurse practitioner Christine Kuhni, the Women’s Health Resource Library (WHRL) opened in 2005. Initially intended as a health lending library, the activities quickly morphed to include a community-driven agenda, prioritizing community needs. The WHRL has been passionate and persistent about meeting its mission. Our organization is almost entirely volunteer, with a working board and over 50 volunteers.
Research shows that women are the primary consumers of health care for their families. By targeting our message to women, we hope to impact the health and wellness of the entire family and community.
The WHRL continues through the generous financial support of individuals, the community and our corporate sponsors: Wyman’s of Maine, Machias Savings Bank, and Down East Community Hospital.
Alahna Roach, President
Counseling and Art Therapy from Naropa University, which she uses in her volunteer work to promote community mental health. She currently serves as Board President of the WHRL and is passionate about recognizing and celebrating the powerful role women play in advancing the health of their families, communities and one another. She is the mother of four boys and spends her free time racing from ball game to ball game.
Krissy Tatangelo, Vice-President
Kristen moved to the area as a student at UMaine Machias, where she studied art and eduaction. She immediately fell in love with Downeast Maine and has been here ever since. Kristen is an accomplished jewelry designer and silversmith. She creates jewelry for a shop in Milbridge and another in Florida. Art is a passion for Kristen, who is the co-founder of the Cherryfield Arts Initiative where she organizes art workshops for children. Hobbies include travel, reading, gardening, and outdoor activities; she is most at home in or on the water. Kristen is currently a stay-at-home mom; she resides in Cherryfield with her husband and two boys. They share their home with two dogs, two cats, and two goldfish. Any more pets in pairs, and they may need to build an arc.
Patti Forbes, Treasurer
Pam Dyer-Stewart, Secretary
Pam Dyer Stewart is a home birth midwife who has served birthing women in Downeast Maine since 1982. She served on the national midwifery board for six years and was active in state and national midwifery politics for many years. As the mother of four grown children– and now enjoying two grandchildren – she knows the central role of moms in the family circle, both the rewards and the challenges. She has striven through her professional career to affirm women’s ways of knowing and support women’s physical and emotional self-care. Pam joined the WHRL board in 2009. She currently serves as secretary and as the coordinator of the Incredible Edible Milbridge project. With her husband, Brian, she grows vegetables, and chickens for eggs and meat. In her spare time, she enjoys being outside in the garden or for a hike, reading, fiber arts, and visits with grandchildren.
Ora Aselton, Recording Secretary
Ora, a Massachusetts native, has happily called Maine her home for over forty years. She graduated from Emmanuel College in Boston with a BA in education and art. Developing and implementing the first visual art curriculum at Narraguagus High School, she taught the program there for twenty-four years. Upon her retirement in 2008, she joined the board of the Women’s Health Resource Library and is proud to be a part of this dynamic group of community-minded women. As past-president of the Pleasant River Garden Club, she has a special interest in WHRL’s Incredible Edible Milbridge project which promotes community gardening skills and nutrition education. I am on the board of the Ruggles House and also on the executive committee for Pleasant River Garden Club.
Emily graduated from the University of Maine in 2011 with a BA in Art; she also holds an Associate degree in liberal studies. She has worked at Wyman’s of Maine as a purchasing assistant since 2015. Art remains a passion for Emily, whose interests range from sewing and textiles to printmaking, non-etch intaglio, and linocut. Emily is shooting for a spot in the Guinness Book of Records for her unique skill finding four-leaf clovers; she found 1,337 in 2017. A lover of travel and good food, she aspires to visiting locations around the world and sampling the native cuisine. Emily enjoys the country life and the richness of the natural world here in Washington county. She had this to say about her work with the Women’s Health Resource Library: “I enjoy the support of the community of women at WHRL, and am prideful of the impact that this organization reaches, touching across many varied social and environmental issues that are important locally and globally.”
Maeve Perry lives with her son in the same community where she grew up. She has worked with children and families since graduating from the Psychology & Community Studies program at the University of Maine in Machias in 2011. She is also part of the Cherryfield Arts Initiative Board and recently started a Life Drawing Group. Maeve has deep roots in DownEast Maine and feels fortunate to find herself in the company of caring and creative people. She is most passionate about women’s health and addressing unmet basic needs of children and families. Her participation in WHRL events has also revealed her inner game show host; Maeve has hosted both the popular “Sex-ed Jeopardy” at local schools and “Women’s Health Trivia Night” at 44 Degrees North. Maeve joined WHRL in 2015 to be closer to the strong and supportive females that she grew up with. She has contributed laughter, energy and creativity to the group and we never really know what she might say next.
Ellen, a proud Milbridge native, worked at Wyman’s of Maine for 36 years, first in the quality department and later as Director of Operations. As part of her work with Wyman’s, Ellen had the opportunity to travel internationally, which she still enjoys. After retirement, Ellen started volunteering at Maine Coast Memorial Hospital on the medical/surgical unit and the wound clinic. She also volunteers in the first grade at Milbridge Elementary School, helping students with reading and math. In her spare time, Ellen enjoys reading and helping the elderly in her community. She and husband Nolan have been married for 50 years, have two children, two grandchildren and 1 great-granddaughter. Ellen enjoys being part of the WHRL board and appreciates the dedication and passion of the group.
Jenny, along with her family, runs Intervale Farm in Cherryfield, where they specialize in growing and selling organic blueberries, specialty cut flowers and blueberry jams. She recently joined the WHRL board in the spring of 2017. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends, hiking with the dogs, arts and crafts with her kid’s homeschool group, and volunteering for DETOP, 4H and now WHRL.
Juana joined the board in March 2018. She first came to Milbridge 15 years ago to participate in Maine’s wild blueberry harvest. In 2013, she became involved with Comienza en Casa / It Starts at Home to prepare her to be her son’s first teacher and prepare him for success in elementary school. Her active participation over the years and her commitment to sharing her knowledge and experience with other parents in the program led her to become a part-time AmeriCorps with Mano en Mano in 2014. She is now the Migrant Education Regional Coordinator at Mano en Mano Juana and is pursuing her degree in education at the University of Maine at Machias.
Chris Kuhni, Executive Director
Chris Kuhni is a Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner at the Milbridge Medical Center, where she has worked for the last 25 years. Chris completed a BS in nursing with a minor in English at the University of New Hampshire and her NP education at the University of Pennsylvania. In 2004, Chris founded the Women’s Health Resource Library; she has served as Executive Director ever since. She received the “Inspirations Award” from the National Association of Nurse Practitioners in Women’s Health and the “Nurse Practitioner Advocate Award” from the Maine Association of Nurse Practitioners; both awards for her work in establishing the WHRL. Her interest in gardening and nutrition contributed to the origins of Incredible Edible Milbridge, which started in 2013. Chris serves on the Washington County Committee of the Maine Community Foundation. She enjoys writing and in 2017 authored a profile of Milbridge artist Janie Snider in Maine Seniors Magazine.
Susan Jordan Bennett, Assistant Director
Susan has a BA from Wittenberg University and a professional background in administration, marketing and communications. She’s been involved with WHRL since 2005 as a board member, president of the board, volunteer, and now as our part-time assistant director. She is also a freelance web and graphic designer and works part-time with Maine Families Home Visiting program. In her free time, you might find her photographing Maine, in the garden or designing.
Use of the WHRL
The WHRL is open during scheduled programming and on many Thursdays.
We recognize that we have a lovely space and are happy to make this space available to other non-profit groups during the week when possible.
The WHRL is not available for private/business functions and parties at this time. We encourage you to consider these other community venues.