Meet Our Team
Shanon Hoffman, Publisher & Owner
From a career start doing radio promotions for Clear Channel in Boulder, to hob-nobbing it with Department of Defense bigwigs as Associate Publisher of an IT/simulation publication in DC, Shanon finally found her true calling and passion when she began her work for Healing Lifestyles & Spas magazine in August of 2002. She combined her PR, marketing, sales and publishing skills gained through her previous life in radio and the DOD and brought it all together to eventually become Publisher of Healing Lifestyles & Spas. The 7 + years of working for the magazine has led Shanon down a road of rediscovery, transformation, healing, mindfulness and all things inspiring. Intertwined with working very hard, her career path has afforded some spectacular adventures and experiences. When not at her desk, you can find Shanon jumping off sail boats on the Aegean with Shiva Rea, on a luscious spa tour through British Columbia, or rafting down rivers in Costa Rica sleeping with the monkeys at eco-lodges along the way. The spa life is never far away—while at her desk, you can find her slathered with her daily homemade face mask, or caked in a hair mask concoction of coconut and sesame oil... that is if she's not practicing transdermal marma meditation learned through her Ayurvedic studies. Shanon's purpose put simply: to live inspired and to share the HL&S mantra: Live Mindfully, Eat Joyfully, Travel Consciously.
Melissa Williams, Editorial Director
Melissa began her interest in health and wellness (and writing about the two) in her teens, going on to receive her Bachelor’s Degree in Communications with a Minor in Exercise & Health Science from the University of California–Santa Barbara. Melissa joined Healing Lifestyles & Spas in 2000, and served as the Editor-in-Chief 9 years. Being the editor of a spa publication affords some amazing experiences including a Tahitian spa wedding with her husband, a cruise for crocodiles in Australia, and a full Ayurvedic and Chinese Medicine analysis while traveling through Malaysia. She is regular contributor to Healing Lifestyles & Spas and also a freelance writer who has contributed to a variety of wellness publications, including Yoga Journal, Cooking Light, Shape, Natural Solutions, and Delicious Living. Melissa is also the co-owner of the Yoga Junction in Louisville, Colorado. Melissa resides in Louisville, Colorado, with her husband, two daughters and two dogs.
Jason Bazilian, DAOM, MTOM, L. Ac., Complementary and Alternative Medicine Advisor
Jason Bazilian is a Doctor of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine – the first to earn a doctoral degree in this field in the United States from the Oregon College of Oriental Medicine in association with Oregon Health & Science University in Portland. Prior to his doctoral degree, he received his Master’s degree in Traditional Oriental Medicine (MTOM), summa cum laude, from the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine in San Diego, and attended the University of Florida for his undergraduate degree.
Dr. Bazilian is state licensed in CA, NY, and CT, and is a nationally certified diplomate (NCCAOM) in Acupuncture and also Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine. He is a certified specialist in Traditional Chinese Medical women’s health (OB/Gyn), having completed a 2-year post-graduate course of intensive study in Boulder, Colorado. Dr. Bazilian completed two months of post-graduate training/internship at the foremost integrated Chinese/Western medical hospital in Changsha (Hunnan Province of China). He spent another two months in China completing advanced doctoral training at the W.H.O. international training facility in Nanjing, where he focused on the integrative medical treatment approaches for pain conditions.
Dr. Bazilian works with athletes, women and men, and children treating a broad spectrum of conditions at their private practice, Bazilian’s Health Clinic in San Diego, alongside his partner and wife, Wendy Bazilian, who has her doctorate in public health and nutrition Dr. Bazilian was the consulting acupuncturist and Chinese Medical advisor at the Golden Door fitness resort and spa for more than a decade. Individually and along with his wife, Dr. Bazilian regularly offers specialty workshops, lectures and writes on a variety of health topics in the field of complementary and integrative medicine and public health.
Wendy Bazilian, DrPH, RD, Nutrition Editor
As a writer, researcher, educator, and food enthusiast Dr. Wendy Bazilian brings experience in nutrition science, public health and counseling to her work. Dr. Wendy received her doctoral degree in Public Health and Nutrition from Loma Linda University and received the highest university academic honor, the Chancellor’s Award. She graduated summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa from Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts. She received her Master’s degree summa cum laude at the University of California, San Diego in Latin American Studies focusing on public health and nutrition in Brazil.
Dr. Wendy, as she is referred to affectionately by her many clients in her private practice, is a Registered Dietitian and American College of Sports Medicine-certified Exercise Physiologist. She is co-owner of Bazilian’s Health Clinic in San Diego with her husband and partner, Dr. Jason Bazilian. Dr. Wendy is a Nutrition Consultant to the spa industry, and led the nutrition program at the renowned Golden Door spa and fitness resort in Escondido, California for more than a decade. As a leader in the fields of nutrition and fitness, she is currently involved in a variety of practical, writing, lecturing, and research endeavors focusing on weight management, sports nutrition, women’s health, longevity, nutrition and skin health, and exercise nutrition. She serves on national clinical and professional committees that help move the science of nutrition and sound application of nutritional and supplement guidelines and regulation forward for the public.
Dr. Bazilian has written for and been featured in numerous magazines like USA Today, InStyle, Martha Stewart Living, Allure, Town & Country, Natural Health, and Healing Lifestyles & Spas, as well as television programs including Live with Kelly and Michael, NBC’s Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America Health, Fox Business’ Money for Breakfast, NBC’s Telemundo, Univision and a variety of others. As a professional writer on nutrition, public health, and exercise, she has published 300 articles for corporate and other media. She is the Nutrition Editor for Healing Lifestyles & Spas Magazine and contributed to the James Beard nominated Golden Door Cooks at Home and New York Times best-selling SuperFoodsRx. She is the author of The SuperFoodsRx Diet: Lose Weight with the Power of SuperNutrients (Rodale).
Debra Bokur, Travel & Wellness Editor
Debra Bokur has spent over two decades traveling the world as a writer, filmmaker, and journalist, exploring the roots of healing traditions in cultures from Iceland and the South Pacific, to Europe and the Middle East. She’s particularly fascinated with how centuries-old cultural practices have found their way into modern spa settings, and with how populations from diverse areas and backgrounds approach the concept of balance, health, and wellbeing. Bokur contributes regularly to a variety of media outlets, including Global Traveler Magazine and Wine Country Network’s national radio program. She’s also a contributing author to Spreading the Word: Editors on Poetry (The Bench Press, 2001). Based in the Rocky Mountains, she spends her spare time experimenting in the kitchen, and hiking with her husband and two dogs.
Jolene Hart, Beauty Editor
Jolene Hart is a natural beauty expert and Beauty & Health Coach, certified by the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and the American Association of Drugless Practitioners. She coaches women on beauty issues ranging from adult acne to weight gain and anti-aging nutrition, and educates consumers about nontoxic beauty products through her company, Beauty Is Wellness. As a former beauty writer for InStyle magazine, Jolene has covered every aspect of the beauty industry from product breakthroughs to red carpet beauty to backstage trends at Fashion Week. She now writes about natural beauty and health for publications like Natural Solutions, Boho, The Huffington Post, Allure, Coco Eco and Healthy Hollywood from her home in Philadelphia.
Shannon Kaiser, Designer, Writer
Shannon Kaiser, named by MindBodyGreen as one of the Top 100 Women to Watch in Wellness, is an inspirational author, speaker, travel writer, and life coach who left her successful career in advertising several years ago to follow her heart and be a writer. She is the bestselling author of Find Your Happy, an Inspirational Guide to Loving Life to Its Fullest, and a six-time contributing author to Chicken Soup for the Soul. She is a regular happiness expert on Huff Post Live and KATU AM Northwest. Her work has been recognized in media outlets across the world such as Good Morning America, Good Day New York, Inside Edition, HuffPost Live, Health and Australian Vogue, and she is an online columnist for Huffington PostMindBodyGreen, Healing Lifestyles & Spas, and News.com.au. Shannon is the wellness coach for Healing Lifestyles & Spas and Travel Tip Editor. She blogs weekly on her website PlayWithTheWorld.com awarded top 75 Personal Development websites and Top 100 Self Help Blogs on the Internet by The Institute of The Pschology of Eating. Her forthcoming book Adventures for Your Soul, will be out August 25, 2015. She lives in Portland, Oregon, with her adventure buddy, her dog, Tucker.
Laurel House, Dating Coach
Laurel House is an international Dating Coach and Flirting Expert, the Dating Coach for Three Day Rule Matchmaking, a 5x published Lifestyle Author, and she has been a featured expert on The TODAY Show, E! News, Good Morning America, Nightline, Glamour, AskMen, Thrillist.com, and dozens of other print, online, and television outlets. Her 5th book "Screwing The Rules: The No-Games Guide to Love” was published in December 2014 with Running Press.
Her YouTube videos, which have had over 20 million views are edgy, authentic, relatable yet aspirational. She gives experience-based actionable how-to advice to empower viewers and clients to get out from under, over, and move on from breakups; learn how to have amazing first dates; turn those dates into healthy, fulfilling relationships; and become their best selves.
Heather Vuchinich, Lifestyle Writer
Heather Vuchinich is a writer and intuitive consultant. Co-author of the book "Simply Sacred: Everyday Relationship Magic", she has also has been published by Organic Spa Magazine, Mountain Astrologer, Yahoo Shine and the Good Spa Guide UK. She works with clients locally in Marin County, California and internationally through her private practice. Her blog Spaliciously provides reviews and news about green beauty products and eco-conscious resorts and spas.
Bess O'Connor, Beauty & Wellness Contributor
Bess O'Connor is a Certified Holistic Health and Ayurvedic Practitioner with over a decade of experience. She is a devoted wife and Mother to 4 magical children. She plans on reaching samadhi and ascending into a higher plane of existence during this lifetime and the next.
Safe Beauty & Body Panel Of Experts - Making A Difference
Rachael Pontillo, Bestselling Author
Rachael Pontillo is the bestselling author of the book Love Your Skin, Love Yourself and co-author of The Sauce Code. She’s a holistic skincare and nutrition entrepreneur, award-winning coach, product formulator, speaker, and educator. Rachael combines different holistic modalities to help people with skin conditions and self-image issues heal physically, emotionally, and spiritually so they can live their lives with joy and confidence. As a mentor, she helps professionals in the aesthetics and nutrition fields build their businesses and truly serve their clients in meaningful and sustainable ways. Rachael is the creator of the popular skincare and lifestyle blog Holistically Haute™, as well as the online course, Create Your Skincare™. She’s been featured in GNC's WellBella Magazine, Green Beauty Team, LEAF Lifestyle, NeoCell, Bulu Box, Spa Week Daily, Hat Trick Magazine, Holistic Vanity, KimberlyLoc, InHue Magazine, Dermascope Magazine, Fitness Magazine, AlignYo, and the Indie Business Network.
Abby Mason, Certified Holistic Health Coach and Author
Abby Mason is a Certified Holistic Health Coach and Author of “Paulina the Picky Princess and the Magic Garden” and soon to be released “Radiant Wellness - Simple tips for a healthy glow inside and out". Abby specializes in working with busy moms who want to improve their overall health and wellness. Her clients want to find balance in learning how to eat the foods that support their individual needs, have more energy, improve their skin quality and live a fulfilled life along with raising healthy and happy children. She shows them how to make better decisions that fit into their busy lifestyle. Her clients love that they can make simple changes that create lasting results. Abby is the creator of the holistic lifestyle blog Passionate Wellness where she shares ideas on how you can live the life you have dreamed of. There are also tips on how to have timeless beauty naturally, delicious and nutritious recipes as well as self-care and wellness practices through a mind, body, spirit approach.
Jeannie Jarnot, founder of Spa Heroes
As founder of Spa Heroes, Jeannie Jarnot has manifested her dedication to non-toxic beauty and whole person health. After nearly two decades as a luxury spa director, Jeannie turned her passion for finding high-quality, high-performance products for face, body and hair into a service that simplifies the process of using safe beauty products. Her natural beauty subscription box, Spa Heroes, reflects her vision that we resist the urge to compromise health in pursuit of a youthful or otherwise desirable appearance, and that by using pure ingredients, we learn to "Use Less. Love More.”
Jolene Hart, CHC, AADP
Jolene Hart, CHC, AADP is a Health Coach, certified by the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and the American Association of Drugless Practitioners, and founder of the pioneering beauty coaching practice Beauty Is Wellness. She is the author of Eat Pretty, a seasonal guide to looking and feeling beautiful using nutrition and self care, and the co-founder and Director of Education of the Nutritional Aesthetics Alliance. Her beauty and health writing has appeared in a wide range of national and international publications, including InStyle, Allure, Organic Spa, Delicious Living and The Huffington Post. Her next book will debut in 2016 from Chronicle Books.
Meet our interns, our minions on the pulse of media.