Founders Everywhere: Jade Kearney and Marguerite Pierce
Jade Kearney & Marguerite Pierce are the co-founders of She Matters, a platform that supports Black mothers by providing access to community, culturally competent healthcare providers, & resources.
Welcome to Founders Everywhere, where we highlight the incredible people behind the companies we’ve backed at Everywhere Ventures, a global pre-seed fund supported by a community of 500 founders and operators.
She Matters is a digital health platform designed to support Black mothers who experience postpartum comorbidities by providing access to community, culturally competent healthcare providers, and culturally relevant resources. The stark reality illuminated by statistics for marginalized populations cannot be ignored. Disturbingly, Black women are four times more likely to die in childbirth or during their postpartum period and infant mortality for Black babies is four times higher than among non-Black infants. Additionally, a staggering 89% of Black women undergo medical procedures without their consent, underscoring a systemic issue of neglect within the healthcare system. Over the past two years, maternal morbidity has surged by 30%, with an alarming 46% increase specifically for Black women and an astonishing 79% rise for Hispanic women. These harrowing statistics demand urgent attention and action, signaling a pressing need for transformative change in maternal healthcare practices.
She Matters was founded by best friends Jade Kearney, CEO, and Marguerite Pierce, COO, who embarked on this journey after confronting postpartum anxiety and depression. Their personal challenges navigating the healthcare system emphasized the critical need for a supportive space for Black mothers where mental health is prioritized. They’re dedicated to instilling cultural competency in maternal mental healthcare and dismantling the stigma surrounding mental health for Black women by developing sustainable strategies for continuous improvement in both processes and personal well-being. They envision She Matters as a community where Black women can truly feel seen and heard. They are positioned to complete a raise by the end of the year, making Jade one of less than 20 Black female CEOs in the US to raise over $3M in venture capital.
Why She Matters and why now?
We have been best friends for over 20 years and we both experienced postpartum anxiety and depression. Nonetheless, we didn't speak about it for quite some time. We felt like we were failing cultural norms of suffering in silence and facing neglect from the healthcare system due to systemic racism, a constant sentiment in healthcare experienced as Black women. We didn’t want others to endure what we went through and realized the urgency of addressing the impact of postpartum on overall health and the importance of addressing it comprehensively. The timing is crucial as we aim to disrupt harmful narratives and save lives.
What is She Matters’ North Star?
Our mission is to improve health outcomes for all Black women and marginalized birthing persons, with a specific focus on providing support, education, and addressing systemic issues in healthcare to make a positive impact.
What services does She Matters provide?
We offer the only Cultural Competence Certification Program for Black Maternal health in the world. It's through a learning management system where we go in and educate healthcare providers on how to better meet the needs of Black women. It's about 80% async and then there's a live component where healthcare physicians have to speak to a Black mom, whether it's in an AMA style or individually, in order to be certified.
The She Matters Culturally Inclusive Maternal Mental Health (CIMH) Scale is a tool designed to assist healthcare providers and organizations in accurately diagnosing perinatal and postpartum mood and anxiety disorders in women of color.
What’s on the horizon for She Matters?
Our objective is to go full throttle for any disenfranchised birthing person, starting with Black women and growing as the years go on. We’re starting with She Matters for Black women then we will expand to Ella Importa for Hispanic women, Native Her for indigenous women, and They Matter for LGBT+ and trans birthing persons.
We are starting to work with medical schools. They are our newest customers and we see the potential as a huge path forward.
We will also be unveiling a symptom tracker app for preeclampsia, eclampsia and HELLP syndrome in Q2 of next year. It will be the largest data hub for information for Black women during their postpartum period. And hopefully, we're going to save some lives.
Do you have any book recommendations?
Jade: The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom by Don Miguel Ruiz and Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard by Chip Heath and Dan Heath.
Marguerite: The Culture Code by Daniel Coyle and Thinking in Systems by Donella H. Meadows.
Jade: I lived in New Orleans for a year and absolutely loved it. I worked as a teacher and learned a lot about myself and it helped me open up.
Marguerite: My daughter was born on her exact due date, which happens less than 5% of the time.
Read more about She Matters’ $2M raise.
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