Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Shameless Selfpromotion

Most of you know I spent the last few days in St. Petersburg, at the Alliance of International Aromatherapists conference.

This is my third conference, and I think I enjoy each one more than its predecessor. The chance to catch up with friends I only get to see once every two years, and sometimes spend time with online friends that I've known for almost two decades, but never MET before is just sheer joy.

But this year two very special, very validating events happened and I want to share them.

Rhiannon Harris was the keynote speaker Friday morning  Her speech was titled "Working at the Coal Face" and she managed to tie together her family's history in the Welsh coalmines to the progress and advances we are making in Aromatherapy. She talked of the tools that the miners relied on and the tools we, as aromatherapy practioners rely on.  She talked of the invention of the Miner's Lamp, and our need for the light of education.  Of how one small error, one brief lack of focus, can have enormous consequences not only for the team, but for the larger community.

She talked of the different ways to mine coal...and of the different ways and styles of aromatherapy.   She spoke of the need for apprenticeship/mentoring in Aromatherapy, as well as Clinical training. (And I am so grateful to those who have mentored me over the years!)

As you advance into the coal seam you need to support the roof.  The further you advance in the mine, the greater the need for strong support pillars.  In light of the advances in aromatherapy it is essential that progress be supported by solid and appropriate safety measures.  Who should set the safety measures? The pillars of the global aromatherapy community, in the US we have:

Sylla Sheppard-Hanger
Laraine Kyle Pounds
Valerie Cooksley
Robert Tisserand
Marge Clark
Mindy Green
Andrea Butje
Jeanne Rose

That list of names showed on the screen...and I could not believe I was being named in that company.

Later that day, during Lunch, Sylla Sheppard-Hanger did a presentation on the Confessions of a Vintage Aromatherapist. She talked of some of the experiences we had shared, of the work of the UAE.  And she honored some of our Seniors (those who had been involved with aromatherapy during the 70's) with Pioneers of Aromatherapy medallions, and some of us (the 80's Ladies) with Vintage Aromatherapist awards.   

Sylla getting ready to present them.

My friend and mentor Kathy Duffy receiving HER vintage award.
*my* Vintage medallion

All of us who received one of the Pioneer or Vintage rewards were just delighted, and wore them with pride all weekend.   Between being a "Vintage Aromatherapist" and 'being a pillar"... AND the way people loved the gifts Nature's Gift gave everyone,  it was a wonderfully validating weekend!

When Robert Tisserand was autographing my copy of his new Safety book, I secretly hoped he would inscribe it "To one Pillar from another"... but it didn't happen that way.

I will be posting some of the most urgent "takeaways" from Robert's preconference workshop within the next few days,  and updating the safety information on our website as I make my way through his book. But I wanted to brag a bit, first.


LauraLee said...


Muddi Boots said...

Congratulations! There are many essential oil and aromatherapy suppliers these days and new people can be confused as to their claims. Thank you for your knowledge and advice and excellent products.

sandyb said...

My Dear Marge, of the many I've come across in this new world of mine, you are the least likely to engage in self-promotion. You and Sylla most definitely have been my personal pillars and gurus, guiding me through as I learn, and teaching me safe practices in the world of eos. If it means being strong, wise, giving, and independent, then I want to be "One Grumpy Old Lady", just like you! ;) Congratulations on your recognition!

Kay Staton said...

What an honor that must have been for you Marge. I am so blessed to have found your company. Knowing that I am buying the best products of the highest quality is important to me. Thank you so much for sharing this event with us!4581

Sherry M said...

It was wonderful to meet you in person! It's ok to toot your horn a little......since you have a horn to toot! You ARE a pillar in Aromatherapy.....and you do belong on that list!

Elaine Shaughnessy said...

Marge - please thank all the wonderful who helped you put together the gracious gifts you gave us. You're so sweet and I truly appreciate your generosity. Thanks again!

Danielle Levins said...

Marge, that is just WONDERFUL!!! Congratulations, and thank you for all your years of education and work, and thank you for sharing that with us, and helping to encourage education and the spread of Essential Oil safety knowledge!

Danielle Levins said...

Marge, that is just WONDERFUL!!! Congratulations, and thank you for all your years of education and work, and thank you for sharing that with us, and helping to encourage education and the spread of Essential Oil safety knowledge!

EponaRae said...

It is a wonderful thing to be publicly recognized and appreciated for just being who you are! You have earned the respect of all of us out here working in the mines by the light you have shone through your wit, determination and unyielding commitment to excellence. Don't ever doubt it. XO