The Wellness Coaches of West Coast Surrogacy offer surrogate mothers unparalleled support and advice throughout the entire surrogacy journey.
Ellen Winters Miller, M.A., L.M.F.T. - Counseling Support
“Having struggled to have children for many years myself, I am honored to be able to assist people achieve their dreams”
- Ellen Winters Miller
After a 5-1/2 year personal struggle with infertility (including the use of 3rd parties and A.R.T. procedures), Ellen, a California Licensed Marriage, Family, Child Therapist since 1986, soon focused her attention on helping others with similar challenges. She is honored to be affiliated with West Coast Surrogacy since the Agency’s launch in 2007, as an independent consultant, psychotherapist and support services provider.
Ellen has the compassion, knowledge, experience and problem solving skills to provide guidance and interact with all involved in collaborative reproduction. Areas explored in pre-cycle meetings are those recommended to be discussed by the guidelines of the American Society of Reproductive Medicine. In meeting West Coast gestational carrier and donor candidates, Ellen ensures their concerns are addressed as well as assesses their appropriateness to participate. Her pre-cycle psycho- educational consultations with intended parents’ focus on the many nuances of family building with assistance. During a gestational surrogate pregnancy, Ellen provides ongoing care and consultations to each participant, focusing on their specific hopes, dreams and challenges. She interacts often with WCS Case Managers, Directors and facilitates monthly WCS Surrogate Support Groups.
For over 25 years, Ellen has continued her professional growth in the field of infertility through awareness of evidence-based research and her involvement as a professional member of the American Fertility Association (TheAFA), American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) Mental Health Professional Group (MHPG), Fertile Hope, Pacific Coast Reproductive Society (PCRS), Resolve and The Society for Ethics in Egg Donation and Surrogacy (S.E.E.D.S.). Ellen was a member of the ASRM MHPG Donor Recipient Family Task Force, and was instrumental in setting up the Professionally led Support Groups for Resolve of Orange County.
Ellen is also a founding Board Member of the Ovarian Cancer Orange County Alliance.
What do surrogates say about Ellen?
"Having had two amazing surrogacy experiences with WCS I realized that there are a few key components to having a successful journey. One of the most important was my relationship with Ellen Winters-Miller. She is always available when needed for both support and direction. She is genuine, dependable, and knows that every surrogacy has it’s own unique rhythm. In other words, she treats each surrogate arrangement with special care. I feel so privileged to have worked with her and know that many surrogates will continue to thrive and enjoy surrogacy because of what she does and how she cares.
Thank you so much Ellen for helping me change the lives of two beautiful families!"
Corey Davis, Surrogate
"Ellen Winters-Miller is a fantastic therapist/counselor. I started going to the surrogate support group with Ellen shortly after being matched with a wonderful couple from the UK. I learned quickly the struggles that surrogates and intended parents experience through this process. Ellen always made everyone feel welcome, comfortable, and justified as we freely spoke of our situations. Even on private calls to her she was always available, ready, and willing to find the best way to resolve issues that came up. Being a surrogate has taught me so many things about compassion and empathy for others. Sometimes there were no solutions but having Ellen and a group of women going through the same challenges was enough to make it through to the next stage. There were sometimes tears and sometimes laughter but each surrogate felt safe in that meeting because Ellen was there. I will never forget the experiences I went through as a surrogate and I am so grateful for having a supportive team with West Coast Surrogacy."
Jennifer Loy, Surrogate
(Jennifer delivered a healthy baby girl for a couple in the UK on October 26, 2014)
Sue Ann Gonis, M.A., C.P.C.C., P.C.C. - Professional Life and Leadership Coach
“It’s an honor to share in the surrogacy journey and to be with another human being who is doing such a selfless act of carrying a baby (sometimes babies) for someone else”
– Sue Ann Gonis, M.A., C.P.C.C., P.C.C.
As an independent Life and Leadership Coach for West Coast Surrogacy, Sue Ann specializes in providing emotional support and encouragement to surrogates and intended parents throughout the surrogacy process. She is an invaluable resource to both the West Coast Surrogacy staff, and to clients, guiding them throughout every important step in the process. She enjoys teaching women who want to become a surrogate mother how to care for their wellbeing, and to aim for their higher potential.
Sue Ann spent 20 years as a corporate executive, including many years with Fortune 100 companies, and has served as an Internal coach, coaching senior executives and their teams. She is a graduate of Coaches Training Institute and the Center for Right Relationship, and holds accreditation as a Professional Certified Coach through International Coach Federation. Sue Anne earned a Masters Degree in Organizational Leadership from Chapman University, and graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Redlands, where she earned a Bachelors degree in Business Administration. She lives with her husband and blended family of 4 children, in Southern California.
What do surrogates say about Sue Ann?
"Sue Ann has a natural gift for life coaching. I am so grateful to have worked with Sue Ann thru my last two surrogacy journeys. She always has a positive attitude and cheerful, genuine words. Having the opportunity to talk with Sue Ann on a monthly basis was an important part of my journeys. She understood my personality and worked so well with me, sometimes keeping me grounded when I wanted to live up in the clouds. Talking to Sue Ann always put a smile on my face. Her compassion and understanding of what I was going at each point in my journey was refreshing. I always felt that Sue Ann embodied my philosophy of living a life of passion, purpose and impact. She made me feel supported and the beauty of it is that during the entire process I was never told to do anything. I drove the process and felt 100% confident afterwards that I had worked out the best solution for myself and my IPs.
Thank you Sue Ann, with your help and beautiful heart I was able to create a family for an amazing couple!"
Carol Lynn Smith, Surrogate
"Sue Ann was and continues to be an integral part of my journey with West Coast as a surrogate. She is always smiling and offering encouraging words of advice. She has been a great asset as a surrogate as well as with my personal life helping me grow and learn new ways to cope with challenges I face. At times as a surrogate I have faced some difficulties with discomfort and new or unknown experiences and Sue Ann has always been a great resource to help gather extra support from others and my Intended Parents to help comfort and relieve my worries and ease my burdens. She has also been very supportive of my entrepreneurial adventures as well and constantly gives me accolades that lift my spirits. I am excited as a returning surrogate to continue working with Sue Ann and will miss her deeply when my surrogacy journeys come to an end in the future. I highly recommend her as a coach as she is filled with an abundance of knowledge and support.
Thank you Sue Ann for helping me along my surrogacy path to making dreams come true!"
Danielle Edgren, Surrogate
Amanda Quayle, Psy.D. - Counseling Support
"Thirteen years ago I started my own incredible journey into parenthood. Through my experiences I decided to re-specialize in the area of reproductive trauma as well as success."
-Dr. Amanda Quayle, Psy.D.
Dr. Quayle is the newest member of the West Coast Surrogacy and West Coast Egg Donation team. She joins the team as a seasoned therapist who has spent the last 20 years working in the field of psychology. It was in 2002 that life changed forever for Amanda and her husband when they found out they were going to have a baby. Three children and two very tumultuous pregnancies that included a long NICU stay later, Amanda changed her practice to focus on working in the area of reproductive psychology. That means working with women struggling with infertility, pre-pregnancy counseling, and post-partum issues. Amanda's passion for equality lends her expertise to include extensive work within the LGBT and HIV community. This opportunity to work with the team at West coast Surrogacy and West Coast Egg Donation is the perfect marriage of Amanda’s passion and clinical skills.
"I firmly believe that supporting surrogates and intended parents through this journey is key to creating a loving experience for both parties. I offer the same level of support for both surrogates and IP's as both have intimate experiences of love, fear, excitement and anticipation as they await the birth of the child. It is an honor to be working with West Coast Surrogacy and West Coast Egg Donation."
Amanda is happily married and the proud mother of three beautiful children, one of whom is disabled.
Tina Schneider, R.D. - Registered Dietitian
“My journey through surrogacy plus my focus on a healthy lifestyle have inspired me to guide others”
– Tina Schneider, R.D.
Tina Schneider graduated from CSULB with a BS in Dietetics and Food Administration, and a minor in Chemistry. Tina attended graduate school while completing her internship at CSULB. During her internship, Tina mostly worked at Torrance Memorial Hospital, where she covered all aspects of Medical Nutrition Therapy and Food Administration. After completing her internship and obtaining RD status, Tina began working at DaVita with end-stage Renal Disease patients where she continues to work today.
Tina is married with four children and has been a surrogate mother through West Coast Surrogacy twice for the same family. Tina attributes always having great pregnancies to healthy eating and exercise, stating that “pregnancy and healthy nutrition are my two passions in life, so helping surrogate mothers follow a healthy lifestyle is now my mission.”