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Naturopathic Convention Forges a Culture of Collaboration

1233 Days ago

Opportunity for cohesion and collaboration brings groups within the profession together at the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians 2018 Convention

Washington, Aug. 10, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- More than 600 naturopathic doctors (NDs) and ND students came together for the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP) 2018 Convention and Exhibition last month in response to a call for collaboration among the various groups within the profession. The Annual Convention took place at the Town and Country Resort in San Diego, kicked-off by a summit designed to initiate a yearlong dialogue over the profession’s diversity, and to explore fresh approaches in creating models for solidarity.

The theme of the convention, E Pluribus Unum, echoed throughout the week’s activities and was highlighted by the AANP’s first African American woman president, Jaquel Patterson, ND, MBA. “‘Out of many: One’ appropriately captures the eclectic nature of the naturopathic profession, while honoring the very diversity that drives our core philosophies behind patient-centered care,” stated Patterson, adding that “strengthening the culture of collaboration” will be the centerpiece of the AANP workplan.

Accordingly, the grassroots initiative to strengthen the profession’s unity was kicked off before the Convention to shape the vision for the role that naturopathic medicine will play in modern healthcare. The Summit on the Future of Naturopathic Medicine will be a year-long facilitated conversation that includes all the different voices of naturopathic doctors. The process seeks to bridge the various paths that have evolved in the naturopathic profession. Newer opportunities for NDs to work in conventional systems, take insurance, and serve in federally-qualified health centers, hospitals and the National Institutes for Health have emerged at the same time as a growing movement to revitalize time-tested traditional naturopathic philosophy and practice.

The convention culminated with the AANP’s annual election and award ceremony, recognizing up and coming leaders, as well as the pioneers who built the profession’s foundation. The 2018 award recipients were announced and recognized at the closing banquet of the Convention, the AANP Gala, on Saturday, July 14. 

  • Michelle Simon, ND, PhD won the 2018 Physician of the Year Award for her work revitalizing the Institute for Natural Medicine which focuses on expanding public awareness about naturopathic medicine;
  • Heather Carrie, MAS, was awarded the Champion of Naturopathic Medicine Award which goes to non-naturopathic doctors who tirelessly advance the profession;
  • Robert Broadwell, ND, LAc, took home the Vis Award for his life’s dedication to advancing the teachings and academic foundations that ultimately led to naturopathic medical institutions implementing rigorous teaching standards and achieving regional and national accreditation;
  • Standard Process was awarded the Corporation of the Year Award for its support of education and residencies;
  • Drs. Sean Hesler and Sarah Preston Hesler were awarded the President’s Award for the work they have done in global health caring for the underserved in developing countries;
  •  and Michael Cronin, ND, took home the Benedict Lust Lifetime Achievement Award as a founder of both the AANP and the Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine, Past President of the AANP, decades-long practitioner, and overall leader in the naturopathic community.

Election results were announced at the AANP Membership meeting on Friday, July 13. Robert Kachko, ND, LAc, was elected as the 2019 President-Elect, with Eliot Edwards, ND, FABNO; Melanie Henriksen, ND, LAc, CNM; Guru Sandesh Singh Khalsa, ND; and Virginia “Ginger” Sweetan, LVN and fourth year ND student elected as 2019-2020 directors.

The AANP Annual Convention is a platform for knowledge sharing, deepening core philosophies and modalities of naturopathic medicine, and building collaborations with integrative medicine practitioners. Next year’s Annual AANP Convention will take place in Portland, Oregon at the Oregon Convention Center, August 15-17.


About the AANP:
The American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP) is the professional association that represents licensed naturopathic physicians. The AANP strives to make naturopathic medicine available to every American and to increase recognition of naturopathic physicians as the identified authorities on natural medicine. Learn more at www.naturopathic.org.


Taryn Ernest
American Association of Naturopathic Physicians

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