Experts, Influencers, Entertainers & More

The Chicago Baby Show features an array of programming content designed to educate, inform, enlighten, and entertain. Through a combination of expert speakers (discussing everything form gear, to parenting tips, to safety and other hot topics for new and expecting parents) to influencers (providing opinions and recommendations on products, parenting, and more) and entertainers to keep kids happy and engaged, our content provides tremendous value to attendees. Make sure you plan your time to take full advantage of this hallmark component of our event.

Keynote Speaker: Natalie Diaz

Natalie Diaz founded Twiniversity, the world’s leading support network for multiple birth families, in 2009. She’s become the global influencer for this small niche community. Reaching over a million families a week through Twiniversity’s Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube channels, moms and dads of twins flock to Twiniversity to find resources, ask questions, explore new products, and find community and support from other twin parents. Natalie is a true connector, bringing parents from all walks of life together, breaking past cultural differences, to share in the highs and lows of parenting twins. Natalie’s book, What To Do When You’re Having Two is a global bestseller in Twins & Multiples Parenting.

2019 Chicago Baby Show Featured Speakers & Experts (More TBA – Stay Tuned):

Julie Burt Nichols

Julie Burt Nichols, Twinivsersity

Julie ​Burt Nichols​ is ​the “Wizard” behind the curtain at Twiniversity, the #1 global support network for parents of twins. She loves serving as a resource and support for new parents, soon-to-be parents, and we-want-desperately-to-be parents.

Julie ​serves​ as Editor-in-Chief of Twiniversity.com, Account Manager, and Instructor for Chicago Twiniversity ​expecting twins​ classes.​ Julie resides in Morton Grove with her husband and 4 year old twin boys.

Joshua Dilts, Lead Car Seat Product Manager at Chicco & Certified Child Passenger Safety Technician

A passionate advocate for child passenger safety, Joshua Dilts joined Chicco as the lead Car Seat Product Manager in 2014. As a father of three, Josh’s real-life experience provides continued inspiration and motivation for creating solutions that make it easier for families to travel safely with car seats. 

As a key player in development projects at Chicco, Josh is involved in all aspects of car safety, from design to messaging, consumer instruction, community engagement, and more – all rooted in a passion and understanding for keeping children safer during travel throughout each stage of growth and development. As a certified Child Passenger Safety Technician, Josh will help educate parents at the Chicago Baby Show on how to easily install, adjust, and secure their child correctly in their car seat, every time.

Chad Ekstrom

Chad Ekstrom, Kanga Care

Chad Ekstrom has been changing cloth diapers for over 11 years. Father to 5 amazing kiddos has proven to make Chad a bit of an expert in the cloth diaper community.

From soup to nuts, Chad has supported Julie (wife to Chad, founder and CEO of Kanga Care, and owner of multiple diaper patents) from the early days of cutting and tracing fabric while making diapers at home, to current day developing of Kanga Care’s international presence by partnering with distributors near and far. Chad is a true Renaissance man wearing every hat it takes to get the job done either at home, at work, or at play.

Melissa Gonzalez Lamaze International

Melissa Gonzalez, LCCE, CD (DONA), Mesa Birth, Lamaze International

Melissa Gonzalez has been teaching Lamaze classes in hospitals and in private in-home sessions since 2010. She lives outside Chicago with her husband, two sons, and a pitbull mix named Ruby.

The owner of Mesa Birth, she is a Lamaze certified childbirth educator, DONA-certified birth doula, Happiest Baby on the Block instructor, and postpartum doula. Everyone in her family loves babies.

Kate Jordan-Downs, Director of Education Programs at KinderCare Education

With 12 years of experience in childhood development and education, Kate oversees KinderCare’s curriculum development and classroom implementation of inclusive practices.

She holds a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Inclusive Education and Curriculum. Each day she works to empower KinderCare’s 26,700 teachers and make sure every child has access to a great education. 

Hillary Scharmann, CPD (CAPPA), Doula & Perinatal Educator at Heart, Birth & Baby

 Hillary Scharmann, CPD (CAPPA), is the vivacious Doula and Perinatal Educator of Heart, Birth & Baby. She has supported over 100 families in empowered and informed pregnancies, births, and postpartum experiences. Hillary serves on the Board of Directors for Chicago Volunteer Doulas, and is co-founder of The Hive Space, a new co-working & play space designed for parents of young children opening this Winter. She is proud mother of three, and has a passion for supporting new parents with a holistic and individualized approach. 

Hillary serves on the Board of Directors for Chicago Volunteer Doulas, and is co-founder of The Hive Space, a new co-working & play space designed for parents of young children opening this Winter. She is proud mother of three, and has a passion for supporting new parents with a holistic and individualized approach. 

Dr. Robert Titzer, Infant Learning Company

Dr. Robert Titzer is an infant researcher who developed a science-based approach to enhance infant and toddler early language skills. His Your Baby Can Learn approach has been used by millions of babies in the US and millions more around the world. 

Titzer gives tips to parents on how to talk to babies and young children to help them language skills at higher levels. This is important because early language learning predicts later language skills. Babies who are in better language environments in the first 18 months of age have faster brain processing speeds than babies who are in environments where fewer words are spoken (Fernald, Marchman, & Weisleder, 2012). Language scores at age 2 predict reading scores at age 15 (Eklund, Torppa, Sulkunen, Niemi, & Ahonen, 2018). 

Learn scientific principles that will help your baby learn language skills and find out the best time to start teaching your child non-native languages!

 Ticonna Purdle, Nursing Speaks

Ticonna Purdle is the founder of Nursing Speaks Incorporated and an  advanced practice nurse.  She is an American Heart Association (AHA) CPR instructor, a doctoral candidate in nursing sciences [PhD(c)], and is a member of American Public Health Association and the honor society of nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International. She has been working in the health care field for over 20 years, and has experience in long term, acute care and out-patient settings.

Diana Zic, CocoonCare

Diana came to yoga after a lower back injury in 2007, with little to no relief from physical therapy, decided to try a yoga class. She soon realized yoga not only eased her body aches, but soothed her racing “monkey” mind. In 2011, she enrolled at Equinox in its Pure Yoga 200hr teacher training program in hopes to share it with other achy bodied, racing mind office workers. In 2015, she left the legal world behind to pursue her passion of helping women become an active participant in their health and well-being. She completed her certification with the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN) in 2017, where she learned innovative coaching methods, practical lifestyle management techniques, and over 100 dietary theories as well as completed her 95-hour prenatal and postpartum certification. In addition, she have obtained continuing education hours in various topics such as: Vin & Restorative, and Yoga for Fertility, Integrative Women’s Health Institute (IWHI) in their Optimal Fertility Program: Preconception Detoxification and Preparedness Program, IIN’s hormonal training course, IWHI’s endometriosis masterclass, and Aviva Romm’s Integrative & Functional Medicine Training Program.
Diana encourages women to listen to their intuition whether it’s on the yoga mat or in a coaching sessions. She believes it’s important to take responsibility for your health and well-being.

If you have any questions, please visit our contact page