Jude Higgins

Jude is a Death Doula, holds a tenured faculty position in Anthropology, is a Ph.D. Candidate in Educational Leadership, and a trained facilitator in Renewal and Wholeness, and Circles of Trust™ techniques, and has taught at colleges and universities in Idaho, Kansas, Utah, and Japan, developed many college courses, and offered numerous workshops and trainings for faculty and staff at colleges and universities for the past 11 years. In addition, she holds certifications in NODA (No One Dies Alone), and Dying Consciously.

Her work as an End-of-Life Doula, facilitator, and educator, inspired her  create HELD’s™ doula training program.  HELD™ Doulas are trained in techniques that enable them to hold space for clients as they assist them (and their families) in working through the challenges they face during various transitional phases associated with end of life.  HELD™ End of Life Doulas are well-versed in meeting clients where they are, and have the ability to guide them to a place of grounded clarity.

HELD™ Doulas are trained to listen, and to bring a gentle strength to the uncertain space that we call end of life.

Michelle Marthia

Michelle Marthia is a HELD™ certified End of Life Doula and facilitator who is also
trained in Interdisciplinary End of Life and Palliative Care, as well as a master certified
wellness guide. Through her work with Rise + Refuge Wellbeing, she provides non-
medical support to clients and their families as they navigate illness and end of life.
Michelle is dedicated to guiding people through uncertainty, while easing the emotional
burden, fear and anxiety often experienced during these difficult transitions. She is
passionate about helping patients rediscover their wellbeing following a medical crisis,
moving forward with confidence and control for improved quality of life. She is also
deeply committed to supporting clients and their loved ones through the complexities of
end of life transitions. Her work as an end of life doula is rooted in compassion and
kindness with the desire to support families in all aspects of achieving a peaceful death.

Michelle is also the founder of Heal Courageously, a local non-profit providing free
professional photography to families dealing with life-threatening illness. As an active
community member, Michelle has served on the board of directors for the Cancer
Wellness House, and co-chaired the Utah Cancer Action Network’s Survivorship and
Quality of Life implementation team. Following cancer treatment, Michelle embraced the
power of storytelling and has been the keynote speaker for many events, including
Survivors at the Summit, Intermountain Conference of Oncology Nursing Services, and
Utah Survivorship Day.

Ronald R. Ferrucci

Ronald R. Ferrucci is a web developer and photographer with a background in Genetics (MS, University of Utah; PhD, University of Ferrara). His photographic work focuses on the macabre, ephemeral, and forlorn. That is to say, he is interested in abandoned places, cemeteries, and urban decay (though not necessarily abandoned). His work can be found at Nichilismo in Fotografia.

As a web developer, his experiences runs from content development, website design, and building the code on which sites run. He also has experience in programming for data analysis in python and C++ (and dabbles in Perl and Pascal—but let’s keep that between us).