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Stephanie Rodriguez, Founder & Executive Director
Hi! I'm Stephanie and here is a little more information about me. I'm a graduate of Western Business College, Portland, Oregon, spent two years at University of Phoenix in a Business Marketing & Management degree program, and a graduate of Cortiva Institute Scottsdale's massage therapy program.
I was a Reiki master and teacher of reiki and metaphysical arts for 10 years prior to becoming a massage therapist almost seven years ago, so all together I've got 17 years of experience working with clients on tables and teaching in small and large groups. (Evidence-based practitioners, keep reading before you come at me.)
Don't let my metaphysical background cause you to jump to conclusions! I'm science-minded as well, and I draw on both art and science for health and well-being. I take a whole-person centered approach encompassing the mind, body, spirit, and emotional aspects of therapy. I got my life coaching certification a few years ago because I wanted to work with clients to improve their lives beyond the treatment room by teaching self-care methods that work.
During my internship at Western, I won an award for my service at The Office of the Mayor under Vera Katz in Portland, Oregon. I am a published poet and a co-author in the of Scars to Stars, Book 2, published by the Realize Foundation, whose mission is to prevent suicide. I've belonged to the National Association of Professional Women, and was published in Who's Who way back in the nineteen hundreds, and later, became a record-breaking Sales Person and Executive Recruiter.
My career has been a deliberate process of learning and skill expansion. I started off my career in 1994 as an executive assistant, then moved into marketing, information technology, and corporate training. From there, I moved into sales and recruiting, where I broke a 30-year company record in my first 90 days, and then went into Hotel Management, serving as the General Manager of two hotels on the Oregon Coast.
Even though I've done all this cool stuff in my career, I'm just a regular person, like you. I don't want to be a fake personality. I want to be real with you, and real about the things happening in our industry. Sometimes I make mistakes. I am human, and I own up to my humanness! While I have learned so much about what's happening in massage therapy all over the United States during my journey of founding and building USOLMT, I am always open to learning more, as long as it's delivered with respect.
I went into Massage Therapy because I wanted to touch more lives one on one. I've now touched over 10,000 lives, literally! My favorite part is seeing people in pain walk away with smiles on their faces. I started off doing injury treatment and a lot of deep pressure massage, but, evolved quickly as a therapist. I consider myself a rare breed of massage therapist because I absolutely love doing body treatments and providing wellness therapies that pamper my clients. I learned to save my body and have fun in my career doing things that make me happy.
I've had my own private practice, served as a Lead Therapist and Trainer, worked at multiple 4-Star and 5-Diamond Hotels & Resorts, and managed a franchise Spa.
I've ben an advocate for all sorts of causes over the years, starting with Pride, and most recently for Massage. I got accepted into the training for Emily's List in 2021 when I was seriously considering running for office. Emily's list helps get pro-choice democratic women elected to congress. Instead, I followed my passion here, to USOLMT.
If I could give you any advice, I'd say stay curious. I'm a Libra, an Enneagram type 6 and an INTJ on the Myers-Briggs. INTJ is the architect. I like to build things. I'm a homeschooling mom since 2020 and I love it. I was an only child, but, I have four beautiful children and two grand children. Italian food is my favorite and I'm a bit of a gourmet home chef. I grew up in the south, though, so, I still love biscuits n' gravy and would go to a pig-pickin in a heartbeat. I've lived in 19 states and been all over the country but never traveled internationally. Living on the Oregon Coast was my favorite. I am an adventurous soul and love to explore new places, meet new people, and hang out in gorgeous spaces.
I do this work because I want to make a difference and leave massage therapy better than I found it. I'm tired of seeing our professionals struggle so much with so many different issues. I'm over dishonest business practices in massage therapy. I'm concerned that our industry is shrinking and sad that so many massage therapists aren't informed about how the politics of massage therapy affects them inside the treatment room. I'm concerned that once our current leaders retire, there won't be enough therapists to pick up the mantle and continue onward. We can't continue to work in this field with blinders on and expect it to work for us. It just doesn't work that way.
I built this platform to bring us closer together and to get as many of you involved as possible in building the future of Massage Therapy. USOLMT is about collaboration, support, information, education, and hope for the future. It's about empowering our professionals, lifting each other up when we're struggling, and giving people the means and resources to take necessary action to make a difference. Keep scrolling to find out how to work with me.
I look forward to working with you! - Stephanie
Stephanie Rodriguez, Founder, USOLMT
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