Men Having Babies Florida / Latin America - 2018
Surrogacy & Gay Parenting Conference

Fort Lauderdale, June 9-10, 2018

Full conference program

Saturday, June 9, 2018

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Registration: 2:00-2:30 PM
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Is surrogacy right for you? Overview and personal stories: 2:30 PM - 3:30 PM (Gallery Ballroom B)
We will open our session with introductions, a comparison of surrogacy with other parenting options, and an overview of the considerations for choosing various parenting routes.

To help you further understand what surrogacy entails from the personal standpoint, you will have an opportunity to hear personal testimonies from a diverse group of of gay surrogacy dads and the surrogates who helped them.

Moderator: Shelly Marsh, former surrogate and MHB’s marketing manager

Panelists include:

Mike Reynolds
Mike and his husband Scott have been together for almost 19 years and fathers through independent gestational surrogacy in Central Florida. Members of MHB since 2015 and stage one assistance recipients. Welcomed their son Blue Alan into the world on Valentines Day 2017 and are now in process of beginning a sibling journey.

Alex Amselem
Alex is from Sunny Isles Beach, Florida. He welcomed his son Benjamin earlier this year, born via gestational surrogacy in Spearfish South Dakota. Their amazing surrogate is from Deadwood, South Dakota, which was 2 planes and a long car ride away! They are enjoying life in beautiful South Florida!

Stephanie Burnside (Mike's surrogate)
Stephanie lives in Florida with her 3 children and boyfriend of 6 years. She completed one singleton surrogacy journey for Mike and Scott. She enjoys the lasting joy that surrogacy has brought to her life.

Kelly Cromer
Kelly lives in Miami, FL with her 6-year-old son and is in the final year of her training to earn a Ph.D. in clinical child psychology. Kelly served as a gestational surrogacy for a gay couple who are now the proud fathers of a healthy 4-year-old girl.
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Mike, Scott, and their son Blue.

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Alex and his son, Benjamin

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A mindful look at surrogacy - Attitudes and Ethics: 3:30-4:45 PM (Gallery Ballroom B)
In this session we will examine how we feel about surrogacy: the meanings and significance people tend to attribute to surrogacy in their lives, with a special focus on surrogates’ perspective. We will look at questions such as:
  • What are the dominant social perceptions of surrogacy in the U.S. and Canada?
  • How do surrogates understand their experiences?
  • What are the roots for concerns about exploitation and commodification in surrogacy?
  • What are the experiences of children born via surrogacy?
We will present recent research on surrogacy, and evidence from studies about the way surrogacy affects the the welfare of the child, the surrogate, and her family. We will also look at programs meant to encourage a more mindful surrogacy experience, such as MHB's Framework for Ethical Surrogacy.

Moderator: Ron Poole-Dayan, surrogacy father, executive director of MHB

Speakers / Panelists:
  • Lauren Cohn, PhD, PA, psychologist, Psychological Strategies
  • Michelle Loris, PhD, PsyD, psychologist, Worldwide Surrogacy.
  • Michelle Pine, surrogate mother and MHB board member.
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Coffee break: 4:45-5:00 PM
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Planning your parenting journey: 5:00-6:15 PM (Gallery Ballroom B)
This is the first part of our comprehensive surrogacy workshop that was developed based on the accumulated knowledge of hundreds of gay men who have already gone through the process.
Topics covered will include:
Basic terminology, types and components of typical surrogacy arrangements.
Typical sequence and timeline for gestational surrogacy journeys.
Legal considerations in the USA and Canada.
Major decisions that shape the surrogacy journey.
Considering your family vision, financial constraints, risk tolerance and ethical preferences.
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Break / Light Supper: 6:15-6:45 PM
Sponsored by IVF Florida

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Free admission - open to members of the LGBT community

7:00 PM - Teen Panel: Surrogacy children of gay dads share their stories (Gallery Ballroom B)

The panel is offered in cooperation with the Outspoken Generation program of Family Equality Council. The program strives to empower those with LGBTQ parents to speak out about our community’s families. This panel is unique for featuring exclusively children in gay headed families formed through surrogacy. Parents, children, prospective parents, psychologists, social workers, students, researchers and other professionals are all welcome.

Moderator: Michael Wetson, surrogacy father and MHB board member

Panelists (shown below with their families, left to right):
  • Adelle, 15 years old
  • Maddie, 13 years old
  • Chloe, 13 years old
  • Elinor, 17 years old

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8:30 PM - Happy Hour

Join us by the water at the hotel’s outdoor bar to close the evening with a social gathering. This casual time will be a great opportunity to discuss the information from the day’s sessions as well as network with other parents, intended parents and professionals. Sponsored by Family Source Consultants.

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    Refreshments will be served.
  • Registered attendees receive a coupon for one free drink.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

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Registration, Breakfast, and Gay parenting Expo: 8:00-9:00 AM (Gallery Ballroom A)
Register, enjoy a complementary breakfast, and explore our Gay Parenting Services Exhibit: more than twenty five tables where you can meet and receive information from leading clinics, surrogacy agencies, lawyers and supporting community organizations.
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Picking providers, budgeting and financial assistance: 9:00-10:15 AM (Gallery Ballroom B)
On the second part of our workshop we will provide peer advice on selecting service providers, cost saving tips, and resources for financial support. Topics covered will include:
  • Where to start (agency, clinic, surrogate or donor).
  • Selecting an agency and clinic.
  • Estimated costs, and factors that affect costs.
  • Cost saving best practices.
  • Financial help through the Gay Parenting Assistance Program (GPAP).
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“Legal Clinic”: 10:00 AM - 5:30 PM (various rooms, please check at the registration desk)
Several legal experts will be available throughout the day for 20 minute private sessions. This is an opportunity to ask questions and receive general guidance on specific legal issues relevant to various circumstances. However note these sessions are not meant to provide formal legal services or serve as substitute for such. Sign up during registration, or throughout the day, as long as sessions are still available.

- Steve Snyder
- Marla Neufeld
/ GreenSpoon Marder
- Victoria Ferrara
/ Worldwide Surrogacy Specialists
- Alex MacNab
/ Moe Hannah, LLP
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Coffee break: 10:15-10:30 AM
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Expert Panel: Medical Aspects of Surrogacy 10:30 AM -12:00 PM (Gallery Ballroom B)
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A closer look at medical insurance and surrogate compensation packages. The panel is sponsored by Palm Beach Fertility Center.

Moderator: Michael Doyle, MD / MHB board

- Brandon Bankowski, MD
/ Oregon Reproductive Medicine (ORM)
- Jerald Goldstein, MD
/ Fertility Specialists of Texas
- David Hoffman, MD
/ IVF Florida
- Mark Leondires, MD
/ Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut (RMACT)
Georges Sylvestre. MD
/ Obstetrician/Gynecologist and MHB board member
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Lunch / Gay Parenting Expo /Book Fair: 12:00 - 1:30 PM (Gallery Ballroom A)
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Enjoy a buffet lunch, and explore our book fair and Gay Parenting Services Exhibit: more than thirty tables where you can meet and receive information from leading clinics, surrogacy agencies, lawyers and supporting community organizations. The extensive book fair will feature both books about the surrogacy process, and books for children born through surrogacy to gay fathers. The expo and book fair will remain open until 4:00 pm. Lunch is sponsored by Open Arms Surrogacy and Egg Donation.
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Breakout sessions - come meet the sponsors: 1:30 - 3:30 PM (Ballroom B, Metropolitan, Louvre, Tate)
Attendees will have the opportunity to take part in up to 6 introductory 20-minute group consultations with the various seminar sponsors. Take advantage of this opportunity to "shop around" and get to know these agencies and clinics more closely. See the table below.

Gallery Ballroom B




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1:30-1:48 PM
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David I. Hoffman, MD
Marcelo J. Barrionuevo, MD
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Souad Dreyfus
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Victoria Ferrara, Esq.
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Melvin Thornton, MD
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1:50-2:08 PM
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David I. Hoffman, MD
Marcelo J. Barrionuevo, MD
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Souad Dreyfus
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Victoria Ferrara, Esq.
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Steve Snyder, Esq.
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2:10-2:28 PM
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Susanna Park, MD
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Wendy Arker
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Jerald Goldstein, MD
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Kristen Hanson
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2:30-2:48 PM
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Susanna Park, MD
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Breanne Willoughby-Brown
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Jerald Goldstein, MD
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Kristen Hanson
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2:50-3:08 PM
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Brandon Bankowski, MD, MPH
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Nir Keren
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Diane Hinson, Esq.
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Joao DePinho, MD
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3:10-3:30 PM
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Brandon Bankowski, MD, MPH
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Nir Keren
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Diane Hinson, Esq.
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Kathryn Kaycoff, MA
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Optional private consultations: 2:00 - 7:00 PM (various rooms, please check with participating providers for more details)
Several clinics and agencies will be available in offices for private consultations with prospective parents that wish to explore the options they offer in more depth. Prospective parents may request to coordinate consultations in advance using this form. Consultation slots may also be available last minute for those who want to first hear the providers at the conference.
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Gay parenting expo / book fair /networking reception: 3:30 - 4:00 PM (Gallery Ballroom A)
Prospective parents, parents (&children!), psychologists, social workers, students, researchers and other professionals are invited to network and exchange perspectives over refreshments. Our Surrogacy Expo will run in parallel.
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Expert Panel: Budgeting and Insurance 4:00-5:00 PM (Gallery Ballroom B)
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A closer look at medical insurance and surrogate compensation packages. The panel is sponsored by NY Life.

Moderator: Ron Poole-Dayan / MHB board

- Souad Dreyfus
/ Open Arms Surrogacy and Egg Donation
- Diane Hinson, Esq.
/ Creative Family Connections
- Kathryn Kaycoff
/ Agency for Surrogacy Solutions
- Michelle Pine
/ Surrogate mother and MHB board member

Q&A Sessions

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Q&A Session I - 5:00-5:30 PM (Gallery Ballroom B)
Budgeting & Financial Assistance Q&A: cost saving best practices, the Gay Parenting Assistance Program (GPAP)
- Ron Poole-Dayan
/ MHB - Executive Director
- Lisa Schuster
/ MHB - GPAP Case Manager
- Jenny Wadley
/ MHB - GPAP Application Coordinator

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Q&A Session II - 5:30-6:30 PM (Gallery Ballroom B)
Legal status of surrogacy across the USA and Canada, contracts, securing parentage rights
- Steve Snyder
- Marla Neufeld
/ Greenspon Mrader
- Victoria Ferrara
/ Worldwide Surrogacy Specialists
- Alex MacNab
/ Moe Hannah, LLP