KATHRYN KAYCOFF, MA – Co-Director & Agency Owner
When my husband and I married in 1999, we decided to start a family right away. Five years, 6 fresh IVFs, 3 frozen embryo transfers, over 100 embryos and 2 Gestational Surrogates later, we became the proud parents of identical twin boys. As you can see, this was not a simple journey. I encountered many situations and professional (and some not so professional) people along the way. It was a heart-wrenching, expensive journey and I wish that I had met others who could have advised me. But since reproductive medicine and surrogacy were relatively new territories, I had to make my own way along many dark corridors.
I found myself talking for hours on the phone with other Intended Parents, offering suggestions, sharing contacts, information and insights from my own experiences. I found that people who had opted to use an agency often felt that the company was focused primarily on the happiness of the Surrogate and treated the Intended Parent’s needs as secondary. As we all know, all parties’ needs must be addressed in order to reduce stress and have a happy pregnancy. It was obvious that what was needed was an agency that would look out equally for the best interests of the Intended Parents and the interests of the Gestational Surrogates. Agency for Surrogacy Solutions, Inc. was my response.
I have not always been involved with the world of infertility and surrogacy — before I began my struggle to become a parent, I worked for more than 15 years as a television producer, writer and director. Surprisingly, having a baby through surrogacy is a lot like producing a successful television show. Both need creativity, lots of coordination, attention to detail, and the ability to deal with all different types of people, while keeping your eye on the desired outcome.
Running my company and helping people through their surrogacy journeys are things I do from the heart. Surrogacy and pregnancy are very emotionally turbulent situations, and I hope to make the experience as simple and as free of anxiety as possible for everyone involved.
Kathryn is the co-owner and founder of Agency for Surrogacy Solutions and Global IVF, Inc.
LAURI BERGER DE BRITO, BS – Co-Director& Agency Owner
I had no idea the roller coaster ride my now ex-husband and I were about to take when we decided to start a family. I was 36 years old when we got married. We decided to cut to the chase and went straight to a fertility doctor. I was thrilled but not surprised when we got pregnant our very first non-medicated IUI. That’s the way it was supposed to be, right? My pregnancy was uneventful and my daughter announced herself to the world 3 1/2 weeks early. We quickly started trying for #2.
We immediately got pregnant with another non-medicated IUI but at ten weeks, the baby’s heartbeat was gone. This was the beginning of what proved to be a very long descent into the depths of infertility. I continued to get pregnant– only to miscarry each time. With each infertility procedure, each test, each pregnancy and miscarriage (8 of them), I found myself sinking deeper and deeper into a very dark place. For 6 ½ years, we tried everything — immune testing and therapies, consultations with top clinics and REs from around the country, donor egg — nothing worked. I did IVFs, ZIFT, DE/IVF, heparin, etc. We were at the end of our rope when my husband brought up surrogacy.
We interviewed with top agencies but their approach was all about the money with no regard for our emotional state. We eventually “settled” for an agency that had an available GS. Our surrogate was wonderful, our agency was not. It was then that I turned to my dear friend Kathryn (who by now had started her own agency) for support. She helped keep us focused and grounded.
Our little girl was born in May 2005. Eighteen months later, our same surrogate gave birth to our son. In 2013, using a different surrogate and new egg donor, we added one more son to our family. My children are the light in my life and it’s hard to believe that I was once so depressed about our infertility that I could barely get out of bed.
Like Kathryn, I, too, had a career in television before infertility consumed my life. I was a producer/director/writer. I produced many programs, but now every time I ‘produce’ a surrogacy, I am much prouder of the outcome. There is nothing more rewarding and ultimately as important as bringing a child who is so very wanted into the world.
I am now at a really great place in my life. I am happily divorced and able to focus on the most important things in my life – my children, my incredible business and my own personal growth. Life is pretty wonderful!
Lauri is the co-owner and founder of Agency for Surrogacy Solutions and Global IVF, Inc.
PAT HURTADO – Surrogacy Case Manager
(Spanish Speaking Case Manager)
Para hablar con Pat en española llamar el número telefónico: 1.818.963.3369
When I was in a period of transition before I began working for the Agency, I remember visiting my hairdresser. I shared my reluctance about returning to the corporate world (I worked in the finance industry) and how I longed to find a job where I felt good about what I did and to know that I was making a difference. I could see his wheels turning as he listened and he finally said, “I have the perfect job for you.” He proceeded to tell me about one of his clients who worked for a surrogacy agency and how much she loved it. He referred to it as the “baby job.” I was intrigued by the work Kathryn and Lauri did with respect to infertility and surrogacy. Knowing how blessed I was to have a son and how precious children are, I knew I would totally love helping couples/individuals have children!
Every time I had a hair appointment, I would remind my hairdresser to please have his client drop my name to Lauri and Kathryn and let them know I was interested in working for their agency. Long story short, my persistence paid off! Almost two years after he mentioned the “baby job” to me, I received a call from Kathryn letting me know that a position as case manager had opened up with their agency. She asked if I was interested. I was thrilled and I immediately jumped at the opportunity!
I have been working for Agency for Surrogacy Solutions since 2010 and it’s gratifying to know that I am playing a part in helping Intended Parents add to their families. It warms my heart when Intended Parents and Surrogates send me pictures of the babies we helped create and knowing that these babies are so loved.
ROCHELLE STERN – Surrogacy Case Manager
I was born in Santa Monica, CA but currently live in Sherman Oaks with my daughter whom I adopted from Vietnam when she was an infant. She is now a teenager and an amazing artist. I am an avid tennis player and play in tournaments regularly. I am also involved with the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council. I have a small close knit family that all live close by. I have a dog named Shana who is an important member of the family. She is a Schnoodle and adds a lot of fun to our home. I also enjoy movies, plays, music, reading a good book, playing the Wii with my daughter and keeping up with exercise.
I have been working in the surrogacy field for many years and with A4SS since 2009. I find it truly fulfilling. Being a parent myself and having fertility issues in my past, I can certainly understand the need and desire to be a parent, so if surrogacy is an option for someone, I feel it should be pursued. For a woman to give this gift of life is an amazing and wonderful thing in bringing joy to a family who otherwise would not have it.
RACHEL HIRSEN – Surrogacy Case Manager
Phone: (818) 632-1089
I am so honored and excited to become a part of the Agency for Surrogacy Solutions team! Though I am new to the agency and to the surrogacy field, I am familiar with untraditional families as both my sister and I were adopted at birth.
I was born and raised in Los Angeles, which I’ve realized is rare these days. During my childhood, my parents continuously strove to share with me the importance of helping others, and it has always been a part of my life. Whether it was weekly visits with senior citizens at an assisted living facility, volunteering at a therapeutic horseback riding program for disabled kids, or providing support to friends and family going through a tough time, a large part of my life has been dedicated to serving others and the community. After receiving my BA in Political Science from Goucher College in Baltimore, and moving back home to Los Angeles, I spent some time working in local government. However, I started to feel like something was missing. It was after many talks with supportive family and friends that I decided to switch careers and graduated from California State University Northridge with my Masters degree in Social Work (MSW). I originally wanted to pursue an MSW so that I could work in the adoption field, but as I learned more and more about surrogacy, I felt my passion for the field grow, and now here I am, grateful to be working with this incredible agency. I feel honored to be able able to help individuals and families fulfill their dreams of having children.
In my spare time, I enjoy riding horses, playing volleyball, and reading fashion and beauty blogs.
JENNIFER SALVATORI – Surrogate Coordinator
I wasn’t born in Texas, but got here as fast as I could! I grew up in southern California and in 1992 our family moved to Texas. That is where I met my amazing, loving husband who works in the broadcast industry. We have 5 children and I treasure every moment with them as a stay at home mom. I started working for the agency in January 2012 after having the most wonderful experience as a GS surrogate with them. I knew that I wanted to be a surrogate when I was 15 after watching my aunt struggle with infertility and failed adoptions. After watching a special on Dateline in 2009 I knew my family was complete but yearned to create a family for someone else.
I had twins for an incredible family in June 2011, and another amazing couple in 2013. Surrogacy has been such a passion for me and I’m very excited to be one of the surrogate coordinators for Agency For Surrogacy Solutions. I love being able to help potential surrogates start their journey and I have a better understanding since I myself was a surrogate with this agency. When I’m not with the kids, husband or working, I spend my free time running.
ANA BERNIER – Surrogate Coordinator
Phone: (909) 561-7628
I am so blessed to have found my soul mate and to have an amazing family as my biggest supporters in everything that I do. After having our two children, my husband and I unfortunately found out that our daughter has Autism; and after a long emotional discussion, we decided that we would focus our lives only on the two wonderful children we have and not conceive anymore. But I knew in my heart, that I still wanted to carry a child, even if it was not for us. After looking into surrogacy, I met Kathryn and Lauri and began my incredible journeys.
Filled with questions and anxieties, both these ladies along with the rest of their amazing team, took great care of me throughout each different stage of my journeys. Afterwards, I absolutely knew this would be my calling. Helping other wonderful women find the courage and their strength to follow their hearts desire of helping IP’s with carrying their miracle baby/ies. I jumped at the chance to be a part of this incredible agency and team. I am now a part of something beautiful, and have the ability to help amazing people make their dream of having children come true.
HEATHER HUTCHINS – Surrogate Coordinator
My passion for children began when I started working with special-needs children after I graduated from high school. I spent 8 years working my way up in a corporate preschool from teacher to assistant director before deciding to open my own home daycare.
In 2006 I had my first child, a boy. Then I met my husband online and after 4 years of getting to know each other, we got married and in 2010 I was blessed with my second easy pregnancy, this time a daughter. I wanted to be pregnant again but was not ready for another baby at home.
I remembered that a mom from my daycare center told me she was a surrogate. A light went off and I knew that’s what I had to do.
My surrogacy was a surreal experience and as soon as I had my embryo transfer I knew I was ready for a career change. I delivered a baby boy in 2012 and was excited to begin working with a surrogacy agency as I neared the end of my own journey. I spent a year with that agency before joining Agency for Surrogacy Solutions. Now, I enjoy helping others pursue their dream of surrogacy while still being accessible to my family.
I was born in Missouri and later moved to Oklahoma, after college I met my wonderful husband of 8 years. We now have two adorable daughters.
I find it fulfilling to be a surrogate, a surrogate coordinator and case manager for Agency for Surrogacy Solutions. I have been in the surrogacy world for several years. I am an experienced surrogate having done multiple journeys with Agency For Surrogacy Solutions.
I work with potential surrogates, current surrogates and intend parents to help them understand the process from beginning to end. I guide them and help answer questions that may arise along the way. I assist with coordinating medical care, counseling, and providing any emotional support that may be beneficial. I love my job and very passionate about surrogacy. I strive to show that passion in the work I do with my surrogates and intended parents.
In my free time I enjoy volunteering at my daughters school as the Parent Teacher Organization President, running and traveling around the world with my husband and daughters.