The American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP) honored Dr. Louise Edwards with its prestigious Vis Award for her commitment to the healing power of nature as a guiding force in her work. Dr. Edwards is a faculty member teaching in National University of Health Sciences’ doctor of naturopathic medicine program.
The Vis Award was developed in remembrance of Bill Mitchell, N.D., one of the founders of another naturopathic school, Bastyr University. The highly selective award is granted to individuals who represent the “Vis”- the profession’s term for the healing power of nature -as demonstrated through their work, life, and community service.
Dr. Edwards received the award at the recent AANP conference. The recipient of the award is selected by the AANP Board of Directors.
Dr. Edwards joined the naturopathic profession during the beginning of its historic renaissance. In 1988, she took the very first NPLEX exams. She was present at the first meeting of the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians and served on the board during the mid-’90s as a legislative chair when very few states had licensure laws for naturopathic physicians. Dr. Edwards was also a part of a team involved in political efforts that resulted in a big jump in the number of licensed states in the ’90s.
“Back in the early ’70s there was just one naturopathic school with only four students per class. Now there are five accredited schools in the U.S. When I graduated, there were only six licensed states, and now there are 16 plus three territories. It’s amazing when I see the evolution of the profession and how far we’ve come and how rapidly. It really gives me tremendous optimism for the future.”
“As president of National University of Health Sciences, which has a long history of naturopathic education, dating back to the 1930’s, I share Dr. Edward’s enthusiasm for the future of the profession and I am especially proud of her recent recognition through the awarding of the “Vis” award,” commended Dr. James F. Winterstein.
National’s Assistant Dean for Naturopathic Medicine, Dr. Fraser Smith, says: “This award is a high honor from Dr. Edwards’ peers – leaders in naturopathic medicine. It reflects a long service of total commitment to the profession but also the precepts of restoring health and teaching the principles of healthy living. Dr. Edwards has brought this expertise and focus to our ND program at NUHS where she has taught our students to use their thorough basic science knowledge to help patients address all of the determinants of health – a truly preventive approach. Our profession and our students are fortunate to know her and this award is well deserved”