faculty profile

Stephanie DeVane-Johnson   PhD, CNM, FACNM

Associate Professor


Stephanie DeVane-Johnson is an associate professor at Vanderbilt University School of Nursing. She has been a certified nurse-midwife for 23 years, working in North Carolina and Tennessee in both private practice and academic institutions. She has provided care for more than 2,000 families of all ethnic and racial backgrounds, as well as precepted numerous midwifery students. Her passion is for research on, and improvement of, breastfeeding and health disparities in the African American/Black community. Dr. DeVane-Johnson is currently co-principal investigator on a community engagement project that trains Black doulas to mitigate the Black maternal mortality rate in the state of North Carolina; her goal is to create a similar project in Tennessee. She has written and published in multiple peer-reviewed journals on the impact that cultural and socio-historical influences have on African American infant feeding decisions. Her research highlights the emerging problem impacting some contemporary African American/Black mothers. Dr. DeVane-Johnson has presented nationally and internationally and is involved in disseminating Black health-related information with the community and media. She was named a fellow of the American College of Nurse-Midwives in 2021.


  • PhD, UNC-Chapel Hill
  • MSN,CNM, Vanderbilt University
  • BSN, UNC-Charlotte


2022-2025: Black Women from Underserved Communities as Trained Perinatal Doulas: A Key Strategy in Advancing Birth Equity. Start May 1 2022.  Duke Endowment Foundation Grant, Co- Principal Investigator. $525,000.

Representative Publications


DeVane-Johnson, S., Woods Giscombe, Williams, R., C., Fogel, C., Thoyre, S., (2018). Social, Cultural and Historical Influences on African American Women's Infant-Feeding Practices. Journal of Perinatal Education. Vol 27 (2), 71-85.

DeVane-Johnson, S., Wright,Y., Godwin, L. & Williams, J. (2018). Breastfeeding and Practice Tips for Case Managers. Case Management Now. Vol 23(3), 158-162.

Bryant, A., Lyerly, A, DeVane-Johnson, S., Kistler, C.E., Stuebe, A. (2019). Breastfeeding, hormonal birth control, and bedside advocacy: the case for patient-center Care. Contraception. Vol 99(2), 73-76.

White, L & DeVane-Johnson, S. (2020). Increasing Black Breastfeeding by Increasing Black Health Professionals. The Journal for Nurse Practitioners. Vol 16(1), 89.

DeVane-Johnson, S. (2020). Book Review: Skimmed: Breastfeeding, Race, and Injustice, by Andrea Freeman. Journal of Human Lactation

Pyles, T., Umi.S, Madubuonwu, S, Hutton,L., Scott,H., DeVane-Johnson, S., Rhoads, S., Russell, J. (2021). Breastfeeding Sisters That Are Receiving Support (BSTARS): Community-based Peer Support Program Created for and by Women of Color. Breastfeeding Medicine. 16(2), 165-170.

Devane-Johnson, S., Woods-Barr, A., Williams, R. (2021). Editorial: Being a Black Breastfeeding Researcher in a White Research World: Speaking With One Voice. Journal of Human Lactation.

DeVane-Johnson, S., Williams, R., Woods Giscombe, C. (2022). Histrographic Essay: The History of African American Breastfeeding in the United States. Journal of Human Lactation

Book Chapters

Devane-Johnson, S. & Kennedy, B. (2022). Perinatal Cultural Diversity. In Baker & Janke (Eds.) AWHONN's Core Curriculum for Maternal-Newborn Nursing (6th ed.). In press.

Devane-Johnson,S & Smith-Francis, M (2022) Appendix to Varney's Midwifery text

Devane-Johnson, S. Varney's Midwifery breastfeeding chapter


  • Editorial Board for Journal of Human Lactation
  • Reviewer for Journal of Human Lactation

Professional Organizations

  • American College of Nurse Midwives


  • Fellow of the American College of Nurse Midwives