Second Place: Dr. Alexandra Tate
Third Place: Dr. Erika Blanton
There's a reason readers keep picking Hirata as their top choice. More than 20 years in practice has not dimmed her passion for helping women deliver babies. Hirata has long been an advocate of births attended by as little medical intervention as necessary when mom and baby's health allows it. "My heart is that childbirth is a mountain-top moment," she says. "It can be transformational for women, so I want it to be their experience and I want to be there as a support." That enthusiasm for natural childbirth has grown with her work training Haitian midwives for the Richmond nonprofit, Midwives for Haiti. Tate has been in practice since 1995 and has developed an expertise around high-risk pregnancies and laparoscopic surgery. And Blanton is the trailblazer: Richmond's first female OB/GYN providing care to women from adolescence onward.
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