In Memory of Christine Ann Obremski
Obituary – Christine Ann Obremski (nee Lanza) – June 26, 1952 – March 5, 2020
We mourn the passing of Christine Ann Obremksi, a leader of the New York metropolitan area midwifery
community since the 1980s. Christine was born in Queens, NY, and attended the Flushing Hospital
School of Nursing after the birth of her sons, John and Frank Jr. She was valedictorian for her nursing
school class. Christine subsequently made the decision to become a midwife, as she believed women
deserved empathic health care based on respect and mutual trust. She received her certificate in Nurse
Midwifery through the midwifery education program of the State University of New York – Brooklyn
College of Allied Health Professions in 1982. She went on to complete her BSN from Adelphi College,
and received her Masters of Science – Nurse Midwifery from the State University of New York – Stony
Brook School of Nursing in 1999.
Ms. Obremski had a long and fruitful career, and was considered an influence during a time when
midwifery in New York City and surrounding communities was evolving and growing. She accepted her
first position as a midwife after completing her education program as a staff midwife at the New York
City Health + Hospital’s (NYC H + H) North Central Bronx Hospital Midwifery Practice when Therese
Dondero, CNM was the Midwifery Director (1982 – 1983). Dedicated to the care of women, babies and
families across communities throughout New York City, Chris also worked as a staff midwife at two
other NYC H + H facilities, the Woodhull Hospital and Mental Health Center (1984 – 1988), as well as
Jacobi Medical Center (2011 – 2019). Chris participated in all models of practice, and was a member of
the faculty/private practice at the Montefiore Medical Center Weiler (Einstein) Hospital (1991 – 1996).
She also worked in community-based heath care centers, offering ambulatory women’s health care at
Planned Parenthood of Hudson Peconic (2011 – 2016), and a local federally qualified health care center
(2016 – 2019). Christine had the opportunity to assume the mantle of Midwifery Director during her
tenure at the Midwifery Practice of Our Lady of Mercy Medical Center, Bronx NY and St. Agnes Hospital,
Westchester County, NY (1995 – 2001). She subsequently was Director of Midwifery at the Mt. Sinai
Medical Center in Mew York City (2001 – 2007) and Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, Jamaica NY (2007
– 2011). As Director Christine preserved and expanded midwifery practice, maintaining full-scope
practice in sites. She steadfastly and shrewdly helped expand scope of practice and the clinical roles
that midwives assumed. Christine demonstrated that midwives were indispensable members of a
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, for example when she established an affiliated community
health center in Astoria, Queens for the Mt. Sinai Medical Center health network. She maintained the
role of midwives as clinical educators for midwifery, medical and nursing students, as well as preceptors
for residents in obstetrics and gynecology programs. Her approach to midwifery clinical practice, and
the ”work” of midwifery, was informed by wit, pragmatism, collegiality, and an admirable work ethic
that earned her the love and respect of all who were fortunate to work with her.
Christine had a lifelong heartfelt commitment to midwifery, and the American College of Nurse
Midwives. She held various chapter positions, including Vice President of the New York City Chapter
(1989 – 1991).
She maintained a full life, encompassing work, professional involvement, time with family, gardening,
and her precious dogs!
Christine Obremski will always be remembered for her intelligence, clinical acumen, collegiality, grace
under fire, authenticity, commitment, humor and the love she expressed for her husband, children and
grandchildren. Especially, Chris will be remembered for all that she brought to her midwifery practice –
a deep respect, love and commitment to women.