Featured Later Moms & Dads
We regularly profile inspiring later moms over 35 (dads too!) on our site and in our newsletter, so we invite you to visit frequently to read their interviews. If you’d like to be considered to be our next featured mother over 35, drop a note to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I was born in New York City to Warner and Kay LeRoy- creators and owners of Great Adventure, Tavern on the Green, Maxwell’s Plum and The Russian Tea Room. I starting working in the restaurant business in high school and received training from Drew Nieporent (Tribeca Grill, Nobu). who was a manager at Maxwell’s Plum. I worked in two of Drew’s restaurants during college and then returned to Tavern on the Green as a manager. I was eventually promoted to Vice President of LeRoy Adventures, my father’s umbrella company, and became executor of the LeRoy estate after my father died in 2001. Today, I have a separate career but continue to support my family in managing the legacy of the LeRoy name, and by working closely with my sister, Jennifer Oz LeRoy who owns Oz Farm and Events. Since graduating in 2013 with my Master’s in Social Work, and getting my license, I have been dedicated to the mental health and well-being of children and adults in the Capital Region, with a focus on suicide prevention. I worked at Ellis Medicine as a psychotherapist on the inpatient unit of the adolescent psychiatric ward, and eventually as an outpatient psychotherapist at the adult clinic. I loved my job but recently left to launch my business as a sports psychology consultant, Equesting, out of Oz Farm in Saugerties, NY.
Stand up comedian and writer on Roseanne, Mad About You and Emmy Award-winning head-writer and producer of Rugrats. Author and star of “Not That Jewish,” currently running Off Broadway.
What was your road to parenthood like? After a failed marriage in my 20’s, I spent almost all of my 30’s with a man I truly believed was the love of my life. It kills me because I believe it really could have worked if only he’d been… an entirely different person. Although finding great success in my career as a stand up, it had never occurred to me that I wouldn’t SOME day have that husband, be raising those kids. But finding myself without a man, and 41 in LOS ANGELES, it became a chilling possibility. I decided I would have my baby, then find our man.
What led to your decision to adopt? A year of fertility treatments and rendezvous with six-foot, green-eyed, musical and athletic sperm sample 142 were deemed “unsuccessful.” I disagree. Because it led a good friend to ask, “Do you want to be pregnant or be a mother?” That led me to adoption.
Featured Mom, August 2014: Suzi Banks Baum
Featured Mom, May 2014: Rachel Siegel
Featured Mom, January 2014: Karen Amster-Young
Currently, I am a co-author of a newly released book, The 52 Weeks. The book is intended to inspire and motivate others to move forward in their lives and try new things, take time for themselves and step out of their comfort zones.
Featured Mom, November 2013: Brooke Berman
I’m primarily a playwright and screenwriter. I’ve recently made my directorial debut with the short film UGGS FOR GAZA, based on a story by my husband Gordon Haber. Currently the film is in “post” — which means, we’re making it perfect. My plays have been produced at Steppenwolf, Primary Stages, Second Stage, WET, The Play Company, Theater 7 Chicago and others. I am about to see the world premiere of my play OUT OF THE WATER (developed as part of the Primary Stages writers lab and again with Naked Angels in residence at NY Stage and Film) at Red Stitch Theater in Melbourne, Australia.
Featured Mom, August 2013: Nina Davenport
I’m a documentary filmmaker. My most recent film, FIRST COMES LOVE, premiered on HBO July 29th: www.firstcomeslovemovie.com
What does your child think of your work? What led you to make your film, and what is the message you want viewers to take away from it? Jasper has been filmed a lot since the moment he was born, so he’s very comfortable in front of a camera. He’s naturally a very performative child, so I think he enjoys it! I made FIRST COMES LOVE because I felt that I was ideally situated to tell this story (of becoming a single, 40–something mom), since I’d made autobiographical films before. (In 2000, I made a film called ALWAYS A BRIDESMAID about my lovelife, which HBO is re-airing now). So many women of my generation struggle with the issue of their biological clocks that I thought it was a very important story, and one that would be best told from a personal point of view. I hope it empowers women to see an example of a someone having a baby on her own and being happy she did.
Featured Mom, April 2013: Jo Ann Grossman
“17 years ago I co-founded, along with my husband, Stu Morden, Kids ‘N Comedy. I continue to direct and produce Kids ‘N Comedy at Gotham Comedy Club in NYC, a performance series where youngsters, ages 10-18, perfect their own written stand-up comedy material. Over the years, we’ve developed instructional technique through classes and workshops. Recently, we published a book “Young Funny and Unbalanced, a Stand-up Guide for Teenagers,” which depicts our instructional technique. Our staff is made up of young professional comics who love children and love teaching and who further our philosophy of nurturing the creative spirit. In 2005 we developed a summer camp two week intensive program, which has grown exponentially. In our summer program, not only do we instruct in the craft of Stand–up, but teach Improvisation and Comedic Acting for Film and Television. From our various training programs, we choose the kids who show the most talent and dedication to join our Kids ‘N Comedy troupe, which performs on the Gotham Comedy Club main stage once a month.”
“How does it feel to be the oldest women in the U.S. to give birth to twins, when you were 60? I don’t feel any different except everyone knows my age, so I have gotten a lot of attention.
What prompted you to become a mom yet again, and how did it come to fruition? My husband wanted to try. I wanted to adopt an older child for my son since he was 5 years old. I conceived through IVF, working with a clinic in South Africa that specializes in in-vitro fertilization of older women. I delivered via C-section at Hackensack University Medical Center in NJ.”
Featured Mom, January 2013: Tina Traster
“I am a writer first. Everything I do and love feeds that. Top among my muses and joys are hiking, photography, movies, swimming, the love of my animals, and of course reading.”
Featured Dad, December 2012: Scott Ellis
“Associate Artistic Director Roundabout Theatre Company; Director/Executive Producer of Showtime’s cable television series Weeds; Five-time Tony-nominated theatre director. His current directorial endeavor is Broadway musical The Mystery of Edwin Drood.”
Featured Mom, November 2012: Kathryn Rose
“In September 2007, I was a successful Wall Street salesperson awaiting the birth of my first child. I, like many women I know, waited until later in life to have a child, to give my career a chance to take hold and be financially stable and independent. My parents were thrilled because, while they had two other grandchildren, they were grown, and nothing gets parents more excited than a new baby. They were both retired and offered to help care for my son a couple of days a week. My mom is a nurse, and I always looked to her for guidance. Then, like a bad dream, everything went terribly wrong. Three days before my baby shower, my mother had a massive brain aneurysm, and we did not know if she was going to live. I spent days/nights and countless hours in the car back and forth to the hospital praying she would come out of it. “
Featured Dad, October 2012: Darren Lisiten
“I work as a business strategist and executive consultant to Krupp Kommunications, Inc., a PR and branding agency founded by Heidi Krupp, my wife, as well as work on other projects. I had a previous business in design and manufacturing where I had a factory in China and created trend jewelry and accessories. I am creative and focused. I work hard and am very ambitious.
I care deeply about my health. I work out often and make great effort to stay in physical shape and eat healthy. Unfortunately, my father passed away too young at 56 years old, and my mother has suffered with cancer for over 17 years. Neither of them focused on self care or living healthy, and that’s motivated me to be just the opposite. Seeing the effects their values about health had on their wellness has given me the impetus to not only live differently, but to pursue a very different life for our son Caden.
I really enjoy learning and growing and ultimately mastering whatever I take on. I like to read when I get free time…particularly books about success and achievers. I literally devoured the Steve Jobs biography…he was a genius and is an idol of mine. I also keep up on trends in finance, business, etc. “
Featured Mom, September 2012: Barbea Williams
“Barbea Williams is a performing and visual artist currently featured in the latest regional production of Motherhood Out Loud. Motherhood Out Loud had a successful Off Broadway run at Primary Stages in NYC and is poised to tour worldwide. It is playing at the Invisible Theatre Company in Tucson, Arizona from September 5 – 23, 2012. The show, written by noted playwrights and authors, shares with humor, candor, poignancy, and insight about the many facets of parenting and the often challenging, but rewarding road to get there…”
Featured Mom, May 2012: Lisa McCourt“My most recent book, Juicy Joy – 7 Simple Steps to Your Glorious, Gutsy Self, was just released by Hay House. It follows a long string of children’s books and parenting books I wrote (including I Love You, Stinky Face) that sold over 5 million copies but never came close to bringing me the kind of yummy fulfillment this book (and associated training) has brought me.
Coming out of the closet with my lifelong metaphysical and personal-development passions six years ago was by far the most liberating, self-honoring thing I’ve ever done. My career is now completely devoted to teaching the rare arts of radical authenticity and genuine self-love — primarily through my online programs, but sometimes at conferences and live events…”
Featured Mom, March 2012: Shannon Guggenheim
“I never know what to write in the “occupation” blank on the dentist or eye doctor forms because, like most people doing their best to make a living in the performing arts, I wear a lot of hats to make ends meet. In my perfect world, I’d write “Professional Actor/Playwright,” since most weekends of the year, I’m on stage as an actor at The Retro Dome (www.theretrodome.com) in San Jose, CA. However, acting doesn’t pay the bills, so my performing arts career is supplemented with my role as Producer/Marketing Director for the company, along with graphic designer, teacher, and host, as well as on a contract basis for other Bay Area companies, like designing and implementing the award-winning annual “Retail Star” incubator program for Madison Marquette….”
Featured Mom, February 2012: Terri Friedlander
“I’ve dabbled with a notable list of job titles in my career from Information Technology Director to teacher to college professor. I’ve been working since I graduated college in the 1980’s and am proud of my Master’s Degree and Certifications. I have a passion for computers, music and writing.
I decided to share my five year, bittersweet journey to motherhood in my novel Chasing Her Destiny, recently published and available on Amazon and the Kindle. It’s based on my desire to leave the fast lane of New York City and start a family…”
Featured Mom, January 2012: Audra Fordin
“Audra’s mission is to empower women of all ages to be safe, confident consumers, drivers and passengers. With the automobile as her instrument for notoriety, she has a legion of fans and continues to successfully grow a four-generation auto repair family business. Audra has received many recognitions from industry, (1st recipient “female auto shop owner of the year 2011) community, (city Citations and awards of merit) government, (NYC small business of the year 2011) and not for profits (outstanding girl scout troop leader of the year 2011) for her outstanding achievements and community service. She has an iPhone application available on iTunes, a DVD, a girls glove box guide, and a book due for completion in April…”
Featured Mom, December 2011: Lori Hamilton
“I am a former teacher turned BIT/s Practitioner. I use various Brain Integration Techniques to remove stress from circuits in the brain by using acupressure points, kinesiology, and healing energy. I get to work with children, teens, and adults who want to remove obstacles from their emotional, educational, and physical success. I specialize in adoption related issues since my passion is to help people touched by adoption find peace! Adoption can affect the brain’s development and certainly the heart’s emotions and sense of security…”
Featured Mom, November 2011: Wendy Beckett
“Wendy has written more than 25 plays (all staged) and directed more than 40 in England, France, Scotland, Australia and New York. A native of Australia, she has also written radio plays for the Australian Broadcasting Commission (ABC) and conducted interviews for ABC with some of the best minds of our time, including Leonard Bernstein, Yehudi Menuhin and Martha Graham. At age of 22, she founded her own women’s theatre company, “Colours Inc” and brought to the stage several plays that toured Australia, most notably Without Limits-Isadora Duncan, Anais Nin-One of Her Lives, Claudel, Losing My Religion, Love Therapy and Refugees… “
Featured Mom, October 2011: Luanne Rice
“LUANNE RICE is the New York Times bestselling author of twenty-nine novels, most recently The Silver Boat. The author of Beach Girls, Crazy in Love and Cloud Nine, Rice’s books often center on love, family, nature and the sea, and have been translated into twenty-four languages. Several have been adapted for television. She has contributed a theatrical piece to the new off Broadway play Motherhood Out Loud. Rice is a passionate environmentalist and is involved with Georgetown University Law Center’s Domestic Violence Clinic. Born in New Britain, Connecticut, Rice divides her time between New York City and Old Lyme, Connecticut in the house where she spent all her childhood summers… “
Featured Mom, September 2011: Leslie Ayvazian
“I teach playwriting to graduate students at Columbia University. I also lead several independent writing classes in a private studio in mid-town Manhattan. I continue to write full length and one-act plays. Currently a one-act play of mine – THERE YOU ARE – is having a run as a radio play on National Public Radio with Olympia Dukakis and Maria Tucci. Another one-act play – DEAF DAY – has been made into a short film in Damascus, Syria. My one-woman show HIGH DIVE has recently completed successful runs in Poland and in Slovakia……”
Featured Dad, August 2011: Bruce Sallan
“Like many women with a biological time clock, I felt much the same. I never wanted to be a father late in life, but that is how it turned out. My first son was born 4 days after my 40th birthday and my second shortly before my 43rd. The irony was that I had always vowed to have kids earlier because my parents were “older” parents at 34 and 37….”
Featured Mom, April 2011: Joy Rose
“My first child was born when I was 32. My last, a daughter, when I was 37. I was passionately engaged in the music scene in New York City and married my husband just after filming a video for MTV…”
Featured Mom, February 2011: Dr. Cynara Coomer
“It wasn’t a conscious decision to become a mom later in life. I waited a long time to meet the right guy, but I certainly did. I had to kiss a lot of frogs to get to this point in my life…”
Featured Mom, January 2011: Patty Chang Anker
“I became a mom at age 31 when we adopted G, and again at age 36 when we adopted R. That doesn’t sound late, but it was 5 years behind schedule. If that sounds a little Type A, it was…”
Featured Mom, December 2010: Karen Salmansohn
“A combination of wanting to wait because I have a passion for my career which I wanted to keep exploring – plus the inability to get pregnant. I ultimately did IVF and it worked on the first try…”
Featured Mom, September 2010: Dr. Jenn Berman
” I don’t really think of myself as a later mom, just a mom. It was really important to me that I be established in my career before I became a parent…”
Featured Mom, August 2010: Aliza Sherman
” I wasn’t in a hurry to get married. I was focused on my work, and it wasn’t until I was in my late 30s that I met and fell in love with a wonderful man and got married. Then I lost my first three pregnancies, spending over two years in the emotional, physical and medical labyrinth of miscarriage…”
Featured Mom, July 2010: Dana Wood
” I consider myself an “accidental mommy.” Not because of a lack of birth control, but rather just because I simply didn’t get married until I was 40. For me, finding a life partner seemed like a big-enough hurdle; I really wasn’t thinking about much beyond that…”
Featured Mom, May 2010: Terrie Williams
” I met Roc when he was sixteen and I was 39. I was organizing a mentoring program for young men at the time, and his family life was so full of insurmountable challenges that I took him in and supported him through college. He had such a powerful life force and I felt connected to him almost immediately…”
Featured Mom, March 2010: Dani Shapiro
” I didn’t think of myself as becoming a mother late in life, mostly because I lived at the time in New York City, where it seemed everyone was having babies in their late thirties and early forties. I was thirty-six years old and recently married when the desire to have a child hit me over the head…”
Featured Mom, February 2010: Cory Kahaney
” You know it’s not my nature to be sappy but I did it for love. My husband had never had children in his first marriage (we were both divorced when we met). Now when I say I did it for love, we’re talking L-O-V-E…”
Featured Mom, December 2009: Vicki Abelson
” I was career driven in my twenties and most of my thirties-–an actress / comedian, then a rock n’ roll promoter and publicist. The hours and the lifestyle did not lend itself to motherhood…”
Featured Mom, September 2009: Candi Carter
“” I had my first child at 33 years old. I was young and excited to bring a new baby into the world. After a completely uneventful pregnancy, my son was born with several physical issues including open-heart surgery at 10 months old…”
Featured Mom, June 2009: Emma Walton Hamilton
” I’ve been a bit of a late bloomer all my life. My husband and I were both busy pursuing careers in the theatre when we met, and I was 28 by the time we got married. That same year, we decided to relocate and start our own theatre, which in many ways became our first child. There was a good deal of building and settling to do before we felt ready to have a family…”
Featured Mom, May 2009: Lenore Skenazy
” My husband has a genetic disease we didn’t want our kids to inherit. We kept waiting for science to decode the gene and figure out a way we didn’t have to pass it along. Ten years into our marriage, science came through — with the help of brilliant geneticist Dr. Petros Tsipouras…”
Featured Mom, February 2009: René Syler
” I was married to my career for many, many years. In fact, I did not get married until I was almost 31 years old. I had Casey at 33 and my (13 years older) husband and I knew that if we wanted another child, it would have to be a pretty quick turn around…”
Featured Mom June 2008: Melissa Errico, 37
“I am a singer and recording artist (and Mom), with an extensive theatrical background on Broadway and off-Broadway, as well as a concert singer currently touring the country with symphonies, and with my own pop-jazz band at venues like the Cafe Carlyle, Birdland Jazz and Joe’s Pub. My debut CD was on Capitol Records and my second solo album will be released April 29th, 2008 on Velour/Universal Records – a CD called “Lullabies and Wildflowers” dedicated to mothers.”