About Family Forward Surrogacy
FFS is a premier Washington, DC-area surrogacy agency dedicated to providing personal support for Intended Parents and Surrogates. Surrogacy is an unusual arrangement in which intended parents entrust one of the most intimate, personal, and consequential experiences of their lives to an agency and a surrogate they have just met. And surrogates, who put their health on the line and dedicate time and emotional energy to the process, also have to trust that their agency is protecting them and looking out for their best interests. At FFS, we understand how important it is to trust your surrogacy team. Our strong suit is guiding both intended parents and surrogates through this complex process with compassion and dedication to the well-being of all our clients, intended parents and surrogates.
We have purposely kept our client base small so that we can get to know our clients and provide personal attention and support. We’re able to provide this level of personalized care because we only accept a maximum of 12 clients per year. Most importantly, we work only with clients and surrogates whom we believe will respect and treat each other well.
Sandra Litsinger Lippard’s IP Journey:
My husband and I were married later in life, and I was 40 years old when we realized that we would have to work with an IVF clinic if we wanted to have a family of our own. After trying multiple IUI cycles, and two failed IVF transfers — one with myself as the recipient and the second with a warm and caring woman, Missie, acting as our gestational surrogate. We tried a third round of IVF and transferred two embryos hoping that one would “stick.” The third time was a charm, and Missie became pregnant with twins.
A twin pregnancy is, by definition, a high-risk pregnancy. And, at 22 weeks, Missie called and told us that she was headed to the hospital with a lot of bleeding. I will never forget dropping everything and flying to join her at the hospital at midnight. That night I thought we were going to lose our girls. I wasn’t sure that we would be able to create more embryos with my eggs. It was a difficult time. Luckily, the bleeding stopped in about 24 hours, but the rest of the pregnancy was hard on Missie and us. We didn’t get much support from the surrogacy agency we were using, especially when we had medical issues and when Missie lost her job and — importantly – her health insurance.
From 22 weeks on, we arranged to have Missie followed by a Maternal Fetal Medicine (high-risk) specialist whom we saw once a month, as well as having many more appointments with the regular OB/GYN. By the end of the pregnancy, Missie had to go on bed rest and have testing every other day. She went into labor at 34 weeks and had an emergency C-section. My husband and I were on the four and a half-hour drive from our home to the hospital when our girls were born. One of our daughters was only 2 lbs. 14 oz. and the other had an issue with her heart and lungs. They ended up staying in the NICU for three weeks.
As a result of our own difficult experience, I understand how hard the journey can be, how precious your embryos are, and how crucial it is to have the support of a caring agency and a kindhearted surrogate whom you trust.
Valerie Miller’s Surrogate Journey
In June of 2014, I delivered a healthy baby boy on behalf of his London-based parents. My surrogacy journey impacted not only me and my intended parents, but also my family. During our journey, my children learned what it meant to create a family, and that it sometimes takes a small village.
I enjoyed watching my kids grow from the experience. They learned not only about pregnancy, but also the important life lesson that we should help others when we have the means to do so. They saw that helping others benefited our family as well. My kids witnessed the happiness I experienced in helping my intended mother become a mom after years of struggling with infertility and recurrent miscarriages. As a family, we also learned a bit about London and life across the pond. We still enjoy a close relationship, and I hope that someday my family will be able to travel to London to visit the family we helped create.
Sandra Litsinger Lippard
Founder of Family Forward Surrogacy
Our team consists of me, a former intended parent, and Valerie Miller, an FFS Surrogate Journey Coordinator, who in 2014 carried and delivered a little boy for intended parents living in the United Kingdom. As a team, we have collectively stood in the shoes of both sides of the match and fully understand the dynamics of the IP/surrogate relationship. If a sticky issue arises, we can leverage our relationships with each of the stakeholders and our personal and professional experience working to successful resolutions.
I love helping others experience the joy of parenthood through gestational surrogacy. As president of the agency, I am the point of contact for intended parents and handle the strategic relationships with IVF clinics and attorneys.
I bring over 16 years of experience in technical education and marketing to the FFS team. I‘ve worked for technology companies such as 3Com, Nortel Networks, Comverse Technologies and Openwave (formerly Phone.com), helping them launch new products and recruit users. Throughout my career, I’ve presented at industry panels and educational seminars around the world to advocate for new platforms and educate corporate customers, consumers and web developers on the benefits of using various new technologies. I bring my years of management and marketing experience and my passion for making a difference in the world to FFS. I am a member of the American Fertility Association, RESOLVE and the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. Please see our Resources Page for more information on these organizations.
If you’re just starting to learn about surrogacy, or have done your research and are weighing your options among agencies, please feel free to call me at 301-320-3086 or email me. I’d be happy to talk you through all the steps in the process and help you decide whether surrogacy and FFS are right for you. There is much to consider, so let’s start the discussion. Learn more about becoming a surrogate, or why FFS is the right fit if you’re interested in becoming an intended parent.
Surrogate Recruiting & Support
I teamed up with Sandra after my first surrogate pregnancy. I’m passionate about women’s health and am a Certified Lactation Counselor. I worked for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program for eight years, providing one-on-one counseling for women and their children about pregnancy, breastfeeding and nutrition. Since delivering my surrogate baby, I’ve worked at FFS supporting surrogates throughout their journeys. I help recruit surrogates, communicate with intended parents and coordinate details – from the first conversation to delivery and beyond. I love building relationships and sharing the excitement that surrogacy brings to everyone involved.
My husband and I live outside the Denver metro area in Colorado. I have three school-age children and volunteer on the PTO of my kids school. We enjoy travel, our children and their myriad of activities and spending time with our many animals – we’ve fostered over 150 dogs and puppies in the past year and a half!
Location and Contact Information
Family Forward Surrogacy
5237 River Rd. #246
Bethesda, MD 20816
Family Forward Surrogacy is easily accessible by public transportation or car. We’re a three-minute walk from the Bethesda Metro Station on the Red Line. Parking is available in a public garage under the building with entrances on Hampden Lane and Elm Street, and of course, we’re happy to validate parking tickets.