Thrive Today: Optimal Aging for Women

2018 Speakers

Alethea Fleming, ND, is a passionate advocate for naturopathic geriatric medicine. She is a Bastyr University graduate and earned a certificate in Gerontology from the University of Washington. Dr. Fleming is the owner and lead physician of the Vital Aging Clinic in Anacortes, Washington where she provides primary care to all adults as well as specific geriatric care. Dr. Fleming is adjunct faculty at Middle Way Acupuncture Institute as well as a member of WANP and AANP. She is an engaging public speaker who strives to make naturopathic geriatric care accessible to all providers. In her off hours, Dr. Fleming can be found hiking the beautiful trails of Fidalgo Island, spending time with her wonderful husband and son, or with her nose firmly in a good book.


Bob Ash, C-IAYT Yoga Therapist, RYT-500 Certified Yoga Teacher. Prior to pursuing Yoga as a profession, Bob was a succesful entrepreneur with a thriving business in the San Francisco Bay Area. He was also an accomplished skydiver, and at one point won a Gold Medal at the U.S. National Championships of Skydiving. In the summer of 2006, Bob had a life changing event that pushed him in a totally new direction. He spent months in the Himalayas of India, pursuing answers to some of life’s deeper questions. Upon returning to America, Bob had an overwhelming desire to serve others, and spent a decade exploring many different aspects of Yoga and meditation, primarily as a means of healing some of the common conditions that are plaguing our modern society. As a Veteran of the U.S. Army, he was particularly interested in understanding and developing treatments for soldiers suffering from the trauma of war. After years of training, Bob became one of the first certified Yoga Therapists under the newly established guidelines of the International Association of Yoga Therapists (IAYT). In addition to his work with Veterans, he has primarily focussed on conditions associated with aging, and had regular classes at hospitals and senior living centers in Nevada County. As owner of DevPrayag Yoga Therapy, Bob has been at the forefront of the Yoga Therapy movement and has helped numerous individuals overcome physical and emotional trauma. He has a palpable enthusiasm for the work he does, and has a unique ability to share the ancient, esoteric science of Yoga in a way that can be understood even by those who have little of no experience with Yoga or meditation. In addition to his Yoga Therapy practice, Bob has spent a majority of the past ten years as a Yoga and Meditation teacher at one of the largest Yoga training facilities in the country. He has shared his story through numerous newspaper articles and has appeared on a variety of local and national news programs, including a segment on ESPN. he has recently taken a position at an indoor skydiving facility in the Portland area as a means of developing a therapeutic flying program to combat the effects of PTSD.

Julie Guenette, PhD, MScN, is a gerontologist and a holistic nutritionist. With an emphasis on optimal aging through the healing power of nutrition, Julie supports the healthcare movement toward an integrated model of medicine. She holds a PhD in Urbam Studies/Gerontology from Portland state Ubniversity (2005), and a Master’s Degree from the National University of Natural Medicine (2016). Julie is no stranger to community health, having spent 20 years in the field of gerontology as a reseacrh associate, healthcare quality improvement specialist, and nutrition counselor. In addition to her roles as an instructor at the Age wise Institute and Portland Community college, Julie maintains a medical nutrition therapy practice in Portland, OR. Before joining the Age Wise Institute in 2016, Julie worked for the Oregon Geriatric Education Center (OGEC), Oregon Health & Sciences Univeristy (OHSU), The Institute on Aging (NIH), and Health Insights. You can contact Julie at She is also available for private consultations on nutrition therapy.

Natasha Niro, MA, is a doctoral candidate (ABD) in the Graduate Center for Gerontology at the University of Kentucky. Her research examines the role of home and social environments in the aging experience of older adults with Downs syndrome. Natasha has a Master’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies with a concentration in gerontology, and a Bachelor’s degree in Business & Leadership. An educator with enthusiasm for face-to-face and online learning, Natasha currently teaches Social Gerontology at Youngstown State University. She previously taught at the graduate level at Marylhurst University and Cornell University. Natasha has two children and five grandchildren who live in the Willamette Valley, where she and husband Frank hope to once again make their home following her graduation from UK.

Eva Blake is a hands-on sex coach and teaches erotic and emotional skills to people who want to feel confident and authentic in all their erotic moments. Her comprehensive coaching style fuses ritual arts, movement, emerging science, kink, and conscious erotic exploration to cultivate resilience in the face of shame and restore the relationship between body, intuition, pleasure, and power. Eva offers workshops, retreats, mentorship, and private coaching designed to help you create the sexual life you desire. Eva holds certificates in Sexological Bodywork, Somatic Sex Education, and the Transformational Coaching Method in addition to a BA in Government from Smith College. She has spoken at Catalyst Con, Kink Fest, The Mystery Box, and been featured in podcasts and in print. Eva is a queer femme, an established dominant, an introvert with a world news addiction and a pit bull as primary companion. She has been described by friends and clients alike as fierce, straightforward, raw, and graceful.

Stephanie Kaplan, ND, has been a primary care physician since 2001, and now focuses her practice on older adults, as well as those at the end of life. Over the years Dr. Kaplan had increasingly visited older people who have found it difficult to leave their homes for appointments. Those meetings sparked her passion to serve older adults and to embrace a home visit practice model as a geriatrician. Advocacy is a large part of Dr. Kaplan’s work. She supports her patients in collaboration with their other health providers to find creative solutions for medical, social and psychological concerns. Her goal is to meet the individual needs of seniors with the diverse offerings under the umbrella of naturopathic medicine, including nutrition, movement, mindfulness, craniosacral therapy, herbal medicine, homeopathy, mindfulness, and medication management.


Tal Cohen, DAOM, Lac, specialized in the treatment of orthopedic and neurological pain at the Rehabilitation department of the Tel Aviv Souraski hospital and pain management at the Integrative Medicine unit at the Assaf Harofe Medical Center. He also received clinical training in Chinese herbs at the endocrinology and internal medicine of Zhejiang Provincial Hospital in China. Dr. Cohen completed his doctorate from Oregon College of Oriental medicine and specialized in the treatment of women’s health and internal medicine with acupuncture and Herbal medicine. Dr. Cohen has been continuing his education as a Certified Health and Fitness Instructor from Wingate Institute, Japanese acupuncture, integrative orthopedics and gynecology, and advanced nutritional training from the school of Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine in Berkeley, California, and Functional Medicine and Human Nutrition from University of Western States.


Wendy Mitchell, MA, CPC, has been a leader in the health promotion field for over thirty years. She has Master’s Degrees in Education and Psychology and is a Certified Professional Coach. She brings a wealth of experience from her many years of work at Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU) and the University of California at Berkeley. As the former Director of Programs and Outreach for the OHSU National Center of Excellence in Women’s Health, Wendy advocated for women of all ages and stages of life to take greater personal ownership of their health and the health of their families. Wendy has been married for 40 years, parented a lovely daughter who is the founder and director of the Portland Child Art Studio where Wendy is President of the Board, and is a Tutu (grandma in Hawaiian) spending several hours a week with her granddaughters. She is a trained child therapist and for fifteen years conducted groups for mothers of adolescent daughters at both OHSU and UC Berkeley. Over a period of 35 years she has personally worked through the experience of chronic fatigue syndrome as well as the hormonal, physical and psychological changes of menopause. Wendy has committed most of her life to addressing the concerns of women in a changing health environment.