Leadership Message

Letter from the President - March 2020

Dear Members,

I hope this letter finds you well and safe amidst these challenging times. We are living in a world that is changing from day to day. We know that you will use your aromatherapy resources to the best of your ability to keep yourself and your family healthy. I am sure you feel as blessed as I do to have this knowledge at your disposal. 

I know everyone is extra busy adjusting to whatever your location and vocation are requiring of you. Here is a short and sweet summary of the things we have accomplished this month. I hope when I write to you next month that our lives are adjusting well to our new normal.

Our Clinical Committee is working on some additional information to introduce interested members to our Clinical Guidelines and their use. They are also hard at work on developing some pediatric guidelines for our members/website. They have also welcomed a new member to their committee.

Our Research Committee continues to review recent research papers for the AIA Research Database. Additionally, they are creating some social media posts to share as a reminder to members and to inform potential members of this wonderful member perk. Have you visited our Research Database lately?

The Media Committee is organizing itself to keep you better informed of AIA activities as well as providing educational content for the general public. Follow AIA on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.

The Education Committee brought us some wonderful webinars. Our recent educational webinars featured Amanda Latin speaking on Aromatherapy in the Context of Holism. She gave great examples of how aromatherapy can be used in holistic practices. This month’s webinar featured Dr. Shannon Becker discussing her research on Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS). We are so impressed by her work and her willingness to share her research with the AIA.

If you missed attending any webinar member can watch these and past webinars online in the members-only section for free. If you are in a location that is in lock-down or you are in self-quarantine, consider earning your CPDs by watching any that you missed during the previous year and submitting your summary for CPDs. This is an opportunity to catch up with your continuing education from the comfort of your home.

Attention AIA Professional members! Upon renewal you were asked to check a box to indicate that you have 12 CPDs for the previous year. While we don’t ask you to submit your certificates when you renew, we do ask that you have them handy and we will continue to select members at random (dip sampling) and ask you to send yours in.

Be sure to join us in April to hear from Virginia Joy Musacchio speaking on the Aromatherapy, CosmoTherapy and the Doctrine of Signatures. As usual, it will be the third Wednesday, April 15 at 6:30 PM Mountain Time.

The Conference Committee has planning underway for the 2021 Conference in Chicago. The Call for Speakers for the conference will be appearing shortly. Submissions will be accepted through April 19th and notification to speakers will be done on June 20th. Please contact those you do business with and suggest that they consider being a sponsor or vendor at the conference. Comments, questions and submissions can be sent to [email protected].

Our Membership Committee is working on ideas for our annual Membership Drive. Did you know that as a member, you receive $10 off your membership fees for each new member that signs up through your referral?

Even though it makes the Board meetings a little longer I am thrilled to report that all Committees are very busy and are active on their 2020 initiatives.

Our new office gal, Carla Pearson is acclimating to her new position and our procedures. We are still sorting a few hiccups, but Carla is doing an amazing job! Thank you for your patience during this time of transition. Please also note our new mailing address is: 3758 E. 104th Avenue #36, Thornton, CO 80233.

We also have a new “Feedback” email and encourage you to write in to let us know how we are doing. Please note if you would like to remain anonymous or if you would like a call or email back from a specific member of our board or support team. Send your emails to [email protected]. All emails go to our office and are collated to be sent to our Executive Board.

Stay safe, be well!  Remember your professional organization is here to support you!


Inga Wieser, MS, MA, MH, APAIA

AIA President

 Meet Your Support Team 

Lora Cantele - Our AIA Executive Director. Lora has been with AIA since 2005 working and volunteering in many positions. She has held various board positions, including president, vice president, director, executive director and has served as chair on the conference, fundraising and education committees as well as being a committee member on our former publications and review committee. Email Lora


Lisa Browder - Journal editor - Aromatics in Action. Lisa has been working for AIA for just over a year now.  We are very pleased to have Lisa working with AIA.  She has done a fantastic job with the journal. Make sure you reach out to Lisa if you have articles, case studies, recipes, and other items of interest for our journal. Email Lisa 


Carla Pearson - AIA Office Manager. You may have met Carla at the AIA conference last year. She came and volunteered her time, just to get to know us. An impressive beginning for Carla. It was a great opportunity for the board to get to know her and we are pleased that she is joining our support team. Welcome Carla. Email Carla

  Meet your Board of Directors

Paula Begel, NYS LMT/BCTMB,CA - Vice President 2019-2020

I have been a Physical Therapy Assistant since 1992, a NYS licensed massage therapist, and Nationally Board certified LMT since 1996. Before that I was a certified personal trainer and aerobics instructor, martial artist, instructor. My experiences in the clinical setting include Phlebotomy and laboratory assistant. I had education and experiences in both the medical and holistic worlds. I was exposed to Aromatherapy in massage school. At that time, my school was owned and operated by Andrea Butje and Cindy Black. How fortunate for me to have these ladies appear 10 years later in my life to get my Aromatherapy certifications and Meridian Massage certification. I was honored to be in Cindy’s first class and have my name mentioned in the book!  My love of essential oils grew more as I continued learning from Andrea, Rhi, Robert and all the other greats! I started with an MLM and quickly realized there was so much more to learn. As I continue to teach, I also continue to learn. My full time work is currently massage therapy, personal Aromatherapy consultations, blending and teaching classes as a CEU provider. Email Vice-President

Jen Shepherd - Secretary 2020-2021

Jen is a clinical aromatherapist and Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker with a mission to empower behavioral and mental health professionals to integrate aromatherapy into their practice, safely and effectively. She is also a wellness clinician, providing individual aromatherapy and wellness coaching, along with short term counseling through her business Shepherd Wellness, LLC. Jen is also an educator and works as an adjunct faculty member at two local community colleges.  Email Secretary

Carol Scheidel, RN, CCAP - Treasurer 2019-2020

Carol Scheidel has a passion for aromatherapy & a passion for professionalism.  She is a Registered Nurse and became a Certified Clinical Aromatherapy Practitioner in 2005. Carol assumed ownership of RJ Buckle, LLC in March 2016, when Jane Buckle, RN, PhD retired.  She previously practiced clinical aromatherapy in a large hospital in Fort Worth, Texas where she was also the nurse ethicist.  Carol continues to consult and teach aromatherapy and ‘M’ Technique®. She has presented at international aromatherapy conferences in Mexico, Japan, France and Hong Kong. She has been a member of AIA since 2011 and has served on the AIA Board since 2014. Email Treasurer

Denise Joswiak, BSN, RN, HNB-BC, CCAP, CA - Director 2019-2020

Denise Joswiak created the Aromatherapy program for Allina Health system.  She has enjoyed teaching patients, families and nurses throughout her 34 years as a nurse. At Allina Health, Denise currently teaches classes involving self-care and integrative therapies.  Denise is the Integrative Health Clinical Site Lead for United Hospital and sits on the Penny George Institute for Health and Healing Nursing Council.  She is co-facilitator of the United Hospital Holistic Nursing Council.  Denise co-authored two research articles and three poster presentations regarding implementation and effectiveness of aromatherapy in the hospital setting.  Her passion is learning and teaching about aromatherapy. Email Director

Venetsana (Venessa) Levin, Registered Aromatherapist-Director 2019-2020

Venessa is a Holistic Practitioner, Forever Student, Educator and Owner of Grateful Aromatics, LLC. A graduate of the Atlantic Institute of Aromatherapy (Tampa, FL), she has also earned the Advanced Diploma in Aromatic Medicine with Mark Webb (ITHMA).  Her passion is empowering others to use the potent and healing gifts of aromatics safely and effectively. In addition to Grateful Aromatics, she also enjoys being a member of the team at Naturopathic CE, a naturopathic learning community and the Atlantic Institute of Aromatherapy helping to support their continuing education needs.  Email Director

David Kropp, Certified Aromatherapist-Director 2019-2020

He creates and sells natural Aromatherapy products through his company, Essentials by DK and sells them and essential oils at markets and vendor shows in the Oneonta, NY area. All of his products are natural with no added synthetics or additives. You can also find him teaching about natural products and essential oil safety at special workshops. I feel I can bring something to the table for AIA. I am passionate about essential oils, Aromatherapy products, and safety.  Email Director

Colleen Thompson, RA, EOT - Director 2020-2021

Colleen Thompson has worked in the field of Aromatherapy since 1995 and has been a Registered Aromatherapist® since 1997. Colleen has owned 3 aromatherapy stores over the course of her career however her main focus these days is teaching Aromatherapy Certification through her school Essence of Thyme College of Holistic Studies. Colleen has sat on many Boards in a variety of capacities. Email Director

Nancy Lubin - Director 2020-2021

Nancy has studied many wellness modalities as diverse as Homeopathy, Five Element Theory, and Zentangle. As an avid organic gardener, she makes many of her own wellness tinctures and remedies. 

Her first Aromatherapy certification (2013) is from Aromahead Institute, with continuing education in advanced courses from Rhiannon Lewis, Madeleine Kerkof Hayes and Mark Webb’s Aromatic Medicine Diploma course. In addition to her Aromatherapy training, she is a Certified CO-Active Life Coach and Certified Zentangle teacher. Email Director

Marian Reven - Director 2020-2021

Marni is a Master’s prepared Registered Nurse with over 28 years of experience. She is a Registered Aromatherapist and owner of MoMa Aroma LLC, specializing in Consultation and Education in Aromatherapy.

Marni is an active member of the Alliance of International Aromatherapists where she is part of the Research and Media Committees and serves as the State Representative for West Virginia. She is passionate about health and wellness and serves as a founding board member for WV Wellness Inc.. Finally, Marni is a board-certified Nursing Staff Development Specialist and is a seasoned educator in both clinical and academic settings. Email Director

Inga Wieser, MS, MA, APAIA, MH - President 2020-2021

Inga Wieser completed her bachelors and master’s degrees at Michigan State University in education in 1978.  In September 2013, she graduated with honors from the American College of Healthcare Sciences with a degree in Complementary and Alternative Medicine earning a double major in aromatherapy and herbal studies.  She continued her education becoming a Board-Certified Naturopathic Doctor and earning a Master’s Degree in Herbal Medicine.  She continues to travel around the world taking classes and attending seminars for the latest and most comprehensive education to pass on to her clients.  She served on the Board of Directors of the Alliance of International Aromatherapist and as Education Committee Chair, before being elected as President.  She seeks to help others through education and support with the use of essential oils, herbs, diet, lifestyle practices, and homeopathics in her clinic.  Email President


I hope you have enjoyed this view into the people working behind the scenes for AIA.


Inga Wieser, ND, MS, APAIA, MH
AIA President