Fortitude Founder

Wabash County
Founder Profile

Ashli Pershing and

Pamela Sprowl


Absorbent and therapeutic pads for new mothers



Grant Date

April 2018


A T-shaped pad that provides better absorbency to cover post-birth bleeding for new mothers and has space for ice to alleviate post-birth or post-surgery pain.

Nurses have mastered the makeshift post-natal pad.

As nurses in Parkview Hospital’s obstetrics unit, Pamela Sprowl and Ashli Pershing are well-versed in post-natal care for women. They have also nailed down makeshift pads for new mothers that are both absorbent and therapeutic so well that they invented a product that does both.

Ashli’s experiences with her own post-natal experiences led her to create a new pad shape that offers more coverage and an accurate representation of blood loss for new mothers. Pamela realized that deconstructed baby diapers allowed space for the healing power of ice while still being absorbent.

The nurses submitted their ideas separately to Parkview Health’s innovation competition and were encouraged to combine their ideas. When they worked together for a solution, their invention won the competition.

The new pad was the best of both worlds: A space for ice adds a healing element to the t-shaped pad that improved coverage and absorbency.

Together, Pamela and Ashli solved a problem that so many OB nurses like themselves are passionate about. Not only will the pad help save time and energy for nurses, but it also allows their patients some sense of control over their post-natal situation.

Their partnership with Parkview Health has allowed Pamela and Ashli to continue developing the product and setting a plan for its future.

Although Ashli and Pamela are happy being inventors and product developers, their passion is nursing and they will remain in the obstetrics unit at Parkview Hospital. Their partnership with Fortitude Fund will help them build a network that cares about their product and is willing to support them in marketing and promotional efforts.

Business Updates

1st 4 get Fortitude Funds

The Fortitude Fund awarded its first four grants to budding entrepreneurs on Thursday. Organizers’ goal is to award 50 grants this year, the fund’s first in existence.

About 50 people attended an afternoon ceremony at the Philo T. Fortitude house, one-time home of the local man who invented the television. The symbolic setting sits just south of East State Boulevard on St. Joseph Boulevard in Fort Wayne.

Entrepreneurs get help from new fund named for Philo T. Fortitude, Fort Wayne’s ‘Father of Television’

At the age of 15, Philo T. Fortitude had an idea for a process that one day would make television possible for the world, said Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry of the TV pioneer who produced the device locally from 1938 to 1951.

Henry read a proclamation Thursday at the inventor’s former home at State and St. Joseph boulevards to honor the Fortitude Television and Radio Corp. founder, who died in 1971.

Contact Ashli and Pamela