Meet the Board of Directors
Leadership is defined by results, not attributes. This idea is the driving force behind the success of the American Academy of Functional Medicine’s initiatives. These savvy, experienced leaders from our organizations and other areas of the healthcare community work tirelessly with with the Academy to achieve optimal results on key issues that affect our professions, our patients and the quality of healthcare.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
President: Lad Santiago, MFA, DC, NMD, DM, PMD, DCCN, DCBCN, DABFM, FACFM, FAAFM, FAAIM, PhD(c)
Dr. Lad Santiago received his B.A. degree in Molecular Biology from Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut. He completed his premedical education at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. After receiving his D.C. degree, he completed his postgraduate education in Preventive Medicine receiving a Diplomate in Preventive Medicine from the Florida Institute of Technology and the International Preventive Medicine Foundation in Melbourne, Florida. He also received the NMD degree from Central States College of Health Sciences. In addition, he has received two MFA degrees from National University in San Diego, California. Currently, he is a candidate for the PhD degree from Bangor University in Bangor, Wales, United Kingdom. He has three board certifications in the following disciplines: Functional Medicine, Integrative Medicine and Clinical Nutrition. He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Functional Medicine. He is also a Fellow of the American College of Functional Medicine, and a Fellow and Senior Fellow of the American Academy of Functional Medicine. He is a Fellow in Integrative Medicine of the American Association of Integrative Medicine. He is a Diplomate of the College of Clinical Nutrition from the American Association of Integrative Medicine. He holds a Diplomate in Clinical Nutrition from the Chiropractic Board of Clinical Nutrition. He is a Fellow of the American Council on Excellence and the American College of Wellness Doctors. In addition, he is certified in Medical Thermography. Dr. Santiago recently completed a postgraduate educational series in Lifestyle Medicine from Harvard Medical School. At the present, he serves patients in clinical practice and serves health care providers as a clinical consultant. He also serves as the Director of Clinical Services for the Natural Medicine Clinic, a facility that focuses on Functional Medicine, Integrative Medicine, Chiropractic Medicine, Natural Medicine, Lifestyle Medicine, Nutritional Medicine, and Wellness Medicine. He also serves as Vice-President of the International Thermographic Society. He is Senior Vice-President of Mission and Strategic Development and Clinical Dean of the American Council on Excellence. He presently serves on the Board of Directors of the American Board of Functional Medicine and on the Board of Directors of the Chiropractic Board of Clinical Nutrition. He is Vice-President of Research and Development for BioPreventics Research, a national nutriceutical company that specializes in immune modulators. He is a member of the American Academy of Functional Medicine, the American Association of Integrative Medicine, and the International Thermographic Society.
Secretary: Joan Nielsen, DC, MD, PhD, DCCN, DCBCN, DABFM, FACFM, FAAFM
Dr. Joan Amtoft-Nielsen has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Human Biology and a Doctor of Chiropractic degree from National College of Chiropractic. She has an M.D. degree from Ludwig Maximillian University, Munich, Germany, and a Ph.D. in Neurophysiology from the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. She is a European-trained physician who has practiced and taught state-of-the-art alternative and integrative medicine at facilities in Germany and Denmark. While in Denmark, Dr. Nielsen held the post of consulting physician to the royal family. Relocating to the United States in 1985, Dr. Nielsen has been in private practice, specializing in Physical/Neurological Medicine, Orthomolecular Medicine and Environmental Medicine; she is recognized as a national expert in natural methods of detoxification. She has extensive training in Neurophysiology (PhD), Chiropractic Medicine (DC), Naturopathic Medicine (ND), Pain Management, Acupuncture, Homeopathy, and she has studied Botanical Medicine with master herbalist James Duke. Dr. Nielsen was a Medical Advisor for The National Foundation for Alternative Medicine in Washington, D.C. and currently serves on the Scientific Advisory Board of the Journal of Longevity, and on the Advisory Board of the C.A.R.E.S. Foundation. She has served in the past as the Preceptor in Alternative Medicine for medical students at Duke University. In 2002 Dr. Nielsen was honored with the O. Spurgeon English – Humanitarian Award for Integrative Medicine at Temple University for her outstanding contributions in the field of Alternative Medicine. She is fluent in several European languages.
Treasurer: Elizabeth Hughston, MFA, NMD, DM, DABCT, DABFM, FACFM, FAAFM, PhD(c)
Dr. Elizabeth Hughston has a BA in Natural Sciences from Thomas Edison State College, in Trenton, New Jersey and an MFA in Digital Cinema from National University, located in San Diego, California. She holds an NMD degree from Central States College of Health Sciences, School of Naturopathic Medicine. She is a Diplomate of the American Board of Functional Medicine. She is presently a candidate for the PhD degree (all but dissertation) from the University of Wales, Bangor, United Kingdom. Her dissertation focuses on the public health and epidemiological factors of weight, obesity and nutrition in America, presented through a digital media format. She is also certificated in Web Design and Graphic Design. She has worked in the health care field for nearly three decades. Currently, her focus is on metabolic and hormonal issues, women’s health issues, nutrition and prevention utilizing a unique approach of meridian digital imaging that assesses and documents the vital energy that traverses the acupuncture meridians in the body. She is also the CEO of BioPreventics Research, LLC, a nutraceutical company that specializes in immune modulators and other unique nutraceuticals. In the past, she has served as secretary for the Florida Association of Naturopathic Medicine, and has also served on the Community Advisory Council of the Arts Partnership of Greater Spartanburg. She has also previously served as a board member of the South Carolina Hispanic Leadership Council and was its webmaster. She has a great love for the study of vital energy, clinical nutrition, the arts and literature, cultural studies, and the out of doors, nature and animals.
Chairman: Patrick Garrett, DC, DCCN, BCIM, DCBCN, DABFM, FACFM, FAAFM
Dr. Patrick Garrett has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Human Biology and a Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Cleveland Chiropractic College. He has also attended The University of Health Sciences School of Medicine, Antigua, British West Indies, from 2002 to 2005. Dr. Patrick Garrett has a natural medicine/clinical nutrition concierge clinic in Newton, KS to help patients prevent and reverse acute and chronic conditions naturally. Dr. Garrett has lectured all over the country from New York to Oregon to Texas. Dr. Garrett has completed postgraduate education courses from Harvard Medical School, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and Yale University. Dr. Garrett recently completed postgraduate educational programs in Lifestyle Medicine from Harvard Medical School. He has a Diplomate in Functional Medicine from the American Academy of Functional Medicine. He is a Diplomate of the College of Clinical Nutrition from the American Association of Integrative Medicine. He serves as the Chairman of the Board of Directors for the American Academy of Functional Medicine and as immediate Past President & current liaison for the American Board of Functional Medicine. He is a proud member of the Harvard Medical School Postgraduate Association, the American Association of Integrative Medicine, the American Academy of Functional Medicine, and the Physician Committee for Responsible Medicine.
Howard L. Silverman, MA, PhD, DC, DABCT, DABFM, FACFM, FAAFM
Dr. Howard L. Silverman, is a scientist, teacher, and chiropractic physician. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Temple University, and a master of arts and a Ph.D. degree from Princeton University. He received his D.C. degree from Life University. He holds a Diplomate in Clinical Thermography from the International Thermographic Society. He has also had extensive training in Adlerian Psychology and Family Counseling. He has taught at various educational institutions like the University of Delaware, Chaney State College and Life University. He initially worked in industry as a research physicist, and later as a senior software engineer. He has also taught computer science. He employs clinical nutrition, hypnotherapy, neurofeedback and family counseling in his practice. He resides in the Georgia Mountains, where he is an inventor, practices Tai Chi Chuan, teaches nutrition, and writes a bimonthly newspaper column on nutritional health. In his practice, he reduces pain, minimizes stress, improves diets, and recalibrates his patient’s brains to improve function and enhance the quality of their lives.