Venus Rising Podcast

illustrated mother and baby

Venus Rising is a podcast welcoming you into our living room for chats about all things fertility, infertility and women’s reproductive health.

Venus Rising is currently available on Spotify, iTunes, Google Play, and Podomatic.

We have incredible educational guests lined up for you, like the influential Gary Powell; Taina Bien-Amie, Executive Director of the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women; and Dr. Diane Tober, Medical Anthropologist and author. We will also be welcoming back some of our most influential surrogates and donor conceived persons to share their first-hand experiences as not only donors but the result of someone’s choice to donate. Our goal is as ever – to create conversation, facilitate discussion and encourage you to think beyond the masses.

Podcast #010: Alison Motluk (Jan. 17)

Today we travel to Canada to speak with Alison Motluk, a Toronto-based journalist with a special interest in reproductive technology.  

Alison writes on a broad category of topics and issues, but today we talk to her about third-party reproduction and the changes in Canada’s Human Reproduction Act. Alison has written in publications such as New Scientist, The Economist and the Globe and Mail. Alison also has a weekly email newsletter called HeyReprotech. You can sign up for her newsletter here.

Podcast #009: Crystal Schnurr (Jan. 3)

For the first time, Jennifer sits down with Crystal Schnurr, a woman who decided to freeze her own eggs for later use. Please join us as Crystal opens up with Venus Rising and tells us about her journey of freezing her own eggs.

Podcast #008: Life As A Donor Conceived Human (Dec. 20)

Join us for a brand new episode of Venus Rising as Matt Doran bravely shares with us his very personal story of growing up and finding out that he was a ‘donor’ conceived human being. Matt is both an aerospace mechanical engineer as well as an advocate against donor conception. Matt created and founded the first free worldwide social network for ‘donor’ conceived people, sperm/egg/embryo/surrogate ‘donors’, and social parents of ‘donor’ conceived people. His mission is to help connect biological families and offer support to other ‘donor’ conceived people so that they can create a demographic body that will create legislative change. You can find more about his foundation at DonorChildren.com

Podcast #007: Kallie Fell (Dec. 6)

Join us for a brand new episode of Venus Rising as Kallie Fell returns as our guest to discuss her work and involvement at the Center for Bioethics and Culture.  As you may know from her first guest appearance, Kallie started her professional career as a research assistant at the Women’s Reproductive Health Research Center at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Kallie has since switched careers, but is still very passionate about women’s health. She currently works as a labor and delivery nurse in the Bay Area. At the CBC, Kallie does important work reading, researching, interpreting, and analyzing new articles and studies pertaining to third party reproduction. 

Podcast #006: Wesley J. Smith (Nov. 15)

On this episode of Venus Rising as Jennifer Lahl has the privilege to sit down with lawyer and award-winning author, Wesley J. Smith, to discuss egg harvesting, gene-editing, artificial wombs and more!

Wesley Smith has authored or co-authored 14 books and hundreds of articles or opinion columns on bioethics issues and the importance of being human (human exceptionalism). His writing has appeared nationally and internationally in Newsweek, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Forbes, National Review, The Age (Australia), The Telegraph (United Kingdom), and the American Journal of Bioethics. He has made guest appearances on national programs such as Good Morning America and Nightline, as well as internationally on BBC Radio 4.  

We are thrilled that Mr. Smith decided to join us on Venus Rising, and we hope that you at home enjoy this episode.  

Podcast #005: Diane Tober (Oct. 31)

Today we speak with cultural and medical anthropologist, Diane Tober. Dr. Tober is an Assistant Adjunct Professor at the University of California, San Francisco Institute for Health and Aging and faculty at the Bixby Center for Reproductive Health. Her work and research is focused on gender and sexuality, the commodification of the body, science and technology studies, bioethics, and social and reproductive justice. With funding from the National Science Foundation, she is, and has been, comparing egg donation in the United States and Spain. She has conducted field research in Iran, Spain, and the United States. Join us as we sit down with Dr. Tober to discuss her research exploring egg donors’ decisions and experiences within the global market for human eggs. 

To find out more about Dr. Tober, her research, or her new book Romancing the Sperm: Shifting Biopolitics and the Making of Modern Families please visit her website: http://dianetober.com

Podcast #004: Kallie Fell (Oct. 18)

On this episode of Venus Rising, we sit down with our own Kallie Fell, a Bay Area labor and delivery nurse, to discuss the very basics of women’s reproductive physiology. Before she was a nurse, Kallie was a scientist in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Vanderbilt University utilizing a M.S. degree in Reproductive Physiology from Purdue University. While assisting in the investigation of endometriosis and pre-term birth, she decided that she wanted to interact more with women in a clinical role and went back to school to become a registered nurse. In this episode, we catch a glimpse of how passionate Kallie is for women’s health education.

Podcast #003: Gary Powell

Today we travel across the pond to talk to England’s own, Gary Powell. Gary is a LGBT activist, public administration campaigner, and an original signer of the Stop Surrogacy Now statement. Gary was tutored in Philosophy by the Rt Hon Baroness Mary Warnock, a specialist in reproductive ethics whose inquiry led to the UK Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990. Join us as we find out why, as a gay man, Gary opposes surrogacy.

Podcast #002: Taina Bien-Aimé

Our guest today is Taina Bien-Aimé, who is the Executive Director of the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women. She was a founding member of Equality Now. Ms. Bien-Aimé has dedicated her career to end violence and discrimination against women and girls around the world. On this episode she discusses with Jennifer Lahl, her organization’s work to stop a bill, The Child-Parent Security Act, which would legalize commercial surrogacy in New York State.

Podcast #001: Welcome to Venus Rising!

We are jump starting this year with an eye-opening and powerful interview about freezing eggs and egg banking.