Cristina has dedicated her career to ensuring access to quality sexual and reproductive health services in Central America and Mexico. Cristina worked in Honduras, Guatemala and Costa Rica providing services and training midwives and physicians on safe and respectful birth, abortion, family planning and sexual health with Marie Stopes International and other local NGOs. After completing her MPH at Tulane University, she moved to Mexico in 2003 where she founded the Luna Maya birth centers in Chiapas and Mexico City. She was a founding member and President of the Mexican Midwifery Association from 2014 to 2017 and has collaborated extensively with the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) and UNFPA. She has worked with several international networks and the World Health Organization to create a global definition and standards for Midwifery Centers. She founded the Mexican Network of Midwifery Centers and created an e-learning program with a manual on “How to Open a Birth Center” directed at improving respectful care and birth outcomes in Mexico and Latin America.
Originally from Spain, Cristina is deeply committed to women's rights and autonomy. She has chosen to pursue advanced studies that will allow her to serve across the globe in a broader capacity to influence and improve health care. Eager to improve her understanding of the application of research toward program design and evaluation, Cristina looks forward to deepening her understanding of implementation science. After completing her DrPH, Cristina hopes to continue to lead improvements in quality of care in women's health service provision, particularly in low and middle income countries.