Karen Lawson

Karen Lawson's picture

Karen Lawson, MD, ABIHM, NBC-HWC, Assistant Professor of Family Medicine and Community Health, is the Co-Director of Integrative Health Coaching and a teaching faculty member at the University of Minnesota’s Earl E. Bakken Center for Spirituality and Healing (www.csh.umn.edu ). Dr. Lawson is board certified in both Family Medicine and Holistic Medicine.  She is the Past-President of the American Holistic Medical Association, and a founding Diplomat of the American Board of Integrative and Holistic Medicine (now part of the Academy of Integrative Health & Medicine www.aihm.org ).  Dr. Lawson holds undergraduate degrees with honors from Michigan State University in Biochemistry and Physiology, completed her medical training at the University of Michigan, and Family Medicine residency at the University of Wisconsin in Madison.  She has received additional training in mind-body techniques such as mindfulness based stress reduction, yoga, dance/movement therapies, nutrition, homeopathy, and a 20+-year study of shamanic practices. 

In her current position, Dr. Lawson is active in undergraduate and graduate medical education, leading the areas of Integrative Medicine, Health Coaching, and Well-Being. She founded and co-directs an MA program in Integrative Health and Wellbeing Coaching. Karen is a co-founder and executive leader of the National Board of Health & Wellness Coaching (http://nbhwc.org/ ) which is working to establish national standards for education, practice and research in that new field.  This includes the inaugural offering of the National Board Exam in Health and Wellness Coaching in Sept 2017.  Karen has taught a UMN graduate course in Foundations of Shamanism and Shamanic Healing since 2003.

Dr. Lawson is a published author and researcher, and speaks nationally to diverse audiences on the power and potential of holistic health care practices, and the role of spirituality in health and healing. She is also a dancer in body and soul, and has practiced yoga for over 30 years. She's completed a 230 hour yoga teacher training program.  Dr. Lawson loves the out of doors and any activities around the water, including wilderness canoe camping.  She has a passion for working with groups using ceremony and ritual for healing and life transitions.