2023 Award Winners

Pictured from left to right: Dr. Jessica Matthews, Melissa Talwar, Dr. Ruth Wolever, Dr. Karen Lawson, Dr. Micheal Arloski, Meg Root, Karen Woodmansee, Jay Petterson; not pictured Margaret Moore 

Lifetime Achievement Award

The recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award - Dr. Michael Arloski

This one-of-a-kind award is bestowed upon a leader who consistently throughout their lifetime has made extraordinary and significant contributions to the field of health and wellness coaching.

Dr. Michael Arloski's life's work and passion is creating allies for a healthy world. A psychologist with over twenty-five years of clinical work and professional contribution to the field of wellness and health promotion since 1978, he is a pioneering architect of the field of health and wellness coaching. Sharing his knowledge, he is the author of Wellness Coaching For Lasting Lifestyle Change, 2nd Ed., a foundational book of the field (published in both English and Mandarin), Paths of Wellness Guided Journal, Vol. 1, and his latest book, Masterful Health & Wellness Coaching: Deepening Your Craft. 

His company, Real Balance Global Wellness Services, Inc., has trained over 14,000 coaches on six continents. Additionally Dr. Arloski was a founding board member of the National Board for Health & Wellness Coaching (NBHWC) and is now a Board Member Emeritus.

Trailblazer Award

The recipients of the 2023 Trailblazer Award - Dr. Karen Lawson, Dr. Ruth Wolever and Margaret Moore, MBA

The Health and Well-Being Coaching Trailblazer Award is the highest honor bestowed upon an individual or individuals in recognition of their significant contributions that have helped to shape and evolve the field of health and well-being coaching in a meaningful way. This award is presented to an individual or individuals who have been extensively devoted to the advancement of the health and well-being coaching profession nationally and/or internationally for a minimum of 10 years, and is based on a demonstrated track record of outstanding leadership, meaningful collaboration and forward thinking innovation and advancement.

Dr. Karen Lawson is the founder and CEO of IHWC Productions, a consulting company that works with programs and individuals to advance and expand training in Integrative Health Coaching and Holistic Healthcare. She served as the founder and Director of Integrative Health Coaching at the University of Minnesota from 2005-2022. A physician—board-certified in Integrative and Holistic Medicine—she is also a founding Diplomat of the American Board of Integrative and Holistic Medicine as well as Past-President (2004-2005) of the American Holistic Medical Association. Dr. Karen is a founding board member of the National Board for Health & Wellness Coaching (NBHWC) and continues to serve the organization. A published author and researcher, she speaks nationally to diverse audiences on the power of holistic health care practices and integrative health coaching.

Dr. Ruth Wolever is an Associate Professor of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, with secondary appointments in the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences and the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing. She leads the Vanderbilt Health Coaching Certificate Program through the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine at Vanderbilt. Dr. Wolever is a national board certified health and wellness coach (NBC-HWC) and a clinical health psychologist with over 20 years of experience training and mentoring medical and allied health professionals in behavioral medicine, emotional health, and health coaching. A founding member of the National Board for Health & Wellness Coaching (NBHWC) and president of the board of directors from January 2016 – February 2019 as well as an active board member to this day, Dr. Wolever is internationally-recognized for her expertise in health and wellness coaching, she has 25 years of experience designing, implementing, and evaluating behavior change programs for medical patients and those at risk for chronic disease. An accomplished researcher, Dr. Wolever has co-authored over 80 articles and academic chapters, and collaboratively given over 260 peer-reviewed or invited presentations. She also co-authored The Mindful Diet, released in 2015.

Margaret Moore— also known as Coach Meg— is a 17-year veteran of the biotechnology industry and in 2000 founded Wellcoaches Corporation, which has trained more than 14,000 health professionals as coaches in 50 countries. Margaret is co-founder and chair of the Institute of Coaching at McLean Hospital as well as co-founder and current board member of the National Board for Health & Wellness Coaching (NBHWC), in which she serves as Chair of the Healthcare Commission. Margaret is the co-author of the Coaching Psychology Manual as well as Organize Your Mind, Organize Your Life and Organize Your Emotions, Optimize Your Life. Additionally, she is an editor and chapter author of the AMA's Coaching in Medical Education.

Coach of the Year Award

The recipient of the 2023 Coach of the Year Award - Meg Root MS, NBC-HWC

This award honors a national board certified health and wellness coach (NBC-HWC) whose outstanding contributions as a practicing professional empower patients/clients to enact and sustain meaningful lifestyle changes. This award recipient has demonstrated superior coaching and leadership skills as well as active involvement in their community, with a demonstrated commitment to improving individual health and well-being.

Meg Root is the Training and Development Manager, a Senior Wellness Coach, and a Mental Health First Aid Instructor at Ramp Health. She has enjoyed a long and varied 30+ year career in the health, fitness, and wellness industries, having lived and worked at many of North America's top destination spas. After earning her master's degree and becoming a national board certified health and wellness coach (NBC-HWC), Meg transitioned into corporate wellness to reach a broader population with an inclusive message of health and wellbeing and a desire to positively impact individual and population health outcomes. In her current role at Ramp Health, Meg is passionate about training and mentoring other wellness coaches in their professional journeys and championing the evidence-based skill set that ensures the field of health and wellness coaching continues to advance and be recognized as an effective and empowering approach to health behavior change.

Raising the Bar Award

The recipient of the 2023 Raising the Bar Award - Karen Woodmansee MS, MA, NBC-HWC

This award is given in recognition of a professional who is providing transformative leadership to further advance the field of health and well-being coaching through creating or evolving education and training, conducting original research that adds quality evidence as to the effectiveness and value of health and well-being coaching, designing and implementing clinical and/or community health and well-being coaching services and/or developing programs to improve quality of care and access for patients/clients.

Karen Woodmansee is the owner of Time For You Fitness, LLC., a company specializing in well-being, coaching, and program creation. As an industry leader in health and well-being for over 25 years as well as a national board certified health and wellness coach (NBC-HWC), Karen serves as a subject matter expert and master coach for the American Council on Exercise (ACE) and has been involved in the creation and delivery of several National Board for Health & Wellness Coaching (NBHWC)-approved training and education programs, including at the Southwest Institute of Healing Arts. In sharing her passion for coaching with others, she provides mentorship to other health and wellness coaches at all stages of their careers. Additionally, Karen has served as an instructor for health coaching and behavior change courses for both ACE and East Carolina University, is an adjunct professor of nutrition at Three Rivers Community College, and also serves as a national presenter and media spokesperson in which she serves as a contributor for various wellness-related articles and publications.

Servant Heart Award

The recipient of the 2023 Servant Heart Award - Melissa Talwar BS, NBC-HWC

This award is bestowed upon a certified health and/or wellness coach who is making a meaningful impact in their local community and/or nationally to increase access to health and well-being coaching services and/or health programs for underrepresented and/or underserved populations. This award recipient is also an individual with a demonstrated and unwavering commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion in the field of health and well-being coaching, stemming from lived experience and/or formal professional DEI training and education.

Melissa Talwar is a national board certified health and wellness coach (NBC-HWC) with specialized training in functional medicine as well as Executive Director for the Support Fibromyalgia Network— a national nonprofit organization. She splits her time as a functional medicine health coach in group medical visits with brain health and chronic pain groups, as well as passionately engages as a patient advocate for federal and state level legislation that seeks to improve healthcare and patients' rights. She is the instigator and organizer of Fibromyalgia Advocacy Hill Days and training, and partners with other organizations to pass bills like Ensuring Seniors' Access to Quality Care Act.

After multiple concussions and a sports injury that resulted in chronic debilitating pain and led to over a decade of declining health, leaving her homebound and with no hope of addressing her fibromyalgia and "autoimmune something" diagnoses. However, using functional and integrative medicine principles, Melissa was able to reclaim her health and is now on a mission to empower patients to find wellness again through health coaching and patient advocacy to ensure no one ever has to fight alone.

Interested in nominating a deserving coach (which can include self-nomination) for an award for 2024? Simply complete the following brief nomination form for the specific award. 

Nomination Form for the 2024 Trailblazer Award

Nomination Form for the 2024 Coach of the Year Award

Nomination Form for the 2024 Raising the Bar Award

Nomination Form for the 2024 Servant Heart Award

All award winners will be honored at a special awards ceremony as part of the 2024 The Health and Well-Being Coaching Conference , held June 7-9, 2024 in San Diego, California!

Questions or other inquiries? Please contact us at info@thehealthandwellbeingcoachingconference.com