Dr. Arviso Alvord is Coming to PNWU


April 14, 2017 | 6 p.m.
Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences 
Butler Haney Hall Auditorium
Admission is FREE

Dr. Arviso Alvord
Integration of Navajo Healing and Western Medicine 

Dr. Lori Arviso Alvord presents Navajo healing practices and their integration in modern Western Medicine. She is a surgeon and author. She may be best known for being the first Navajo woman to ever become board certified in surgery. Her autobiography, The Scalpel and the Silver Bear, has brought increased attention to her career as a surgeon and has sold over 50,000 copies. Dr. Alvord was also nominated to serve as the U.S. Surgeon General in 2013. 

About Dr. Lori Arviso Alvord:

Dr. Lori Arviso Alvord, MD (Navajo) is an author and surgeon, and the first Navajo woman to be board-certified in surgery. She is a member of the Ponderosa Pine (Tsinnajinnie) and Salt (Ashi’hii’ Dine’) clans. She was raised in Crownpoint, New Mexico. Her memoir, The Scalpel and the Silver Bear (Bantam, 1999), tells the story of her journey from the reservation to the operating room and of her work to combine Navajo philosophies of healing with western medicine. She currently holds an appointment as Associate Faculty at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Center for American Indian Health, Baltimore, MD. Dr. Alvord was named an Arthur Vining Davis Scholar in 2016. In 2013, she was nominated for the position of Surgeon General of the United States, by the National Congress of American Indians and the National Indian Health Board. 

Alvord earned her undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College in 1979, received her doctorate of medicine (MD) at Stanford University School of Medicine in 1985, and completed her residency in general surgery at Stanford University Hospital. She served as associate dean, student affairs, at Dartmouth Medical School from 1997-2009, Central Michigan College of Medicine (2010-2012), and the University of Arizona College of Medicine (2012-2014). In addition to other medical practice and teaching positions, she served as a member of the National Advisory Council of the NIH Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine from 2008-2010, and she has been a member of many NIH study sections. Her research has focused on surgical outcomes and health disparities in Native American populations. Additional interests include Native American health and healing practices, integrative medicine, and the creation of healing environments. Alvord has been awarded honorary degrees from Albany Medical College, Drexel University College of Medicine, and Pine Manor College, and has been a commencement speaker at five medical schools. She is featured in the National Library of Medicine exhibit, “Changing the Face of Medicine,” honoring pioneering women physicians over the past 150 years.

“Ceremonies work at multiple levels, but primarily they heal the mind, which helps to heal the body. Chant, song, prayer, and guided imagery are used, in an elaborate form of mind-body medicine. Subsistence living and environmental sustainability principles are also found in ceremony teachings, and are examples of how interconnection can promote sustainability theory and teach humans a way of living that honors and protects our natural world. “–LORI ARVISO ALVORD