Bastyr University Prepares for Centennial Celebration Week

Many birthday celebrations do not include much more than cake and presents. But on what would have been the 100th birthday of the man considered to be the father of the modern naturopathic medicine movement, a few extra events are in order. That is why Bastyr University will host a number of celebrations next week to remember the life and legacy of Dr. John Bartholomew Bastyr.

Among the events planned the week of May 14:

  • Spring for Health Luncheon – May 16, 2012, would have been Dr. John Bartholomew Bastyr’s 100th birthday. To celebrate his life, on that very day we will be holding our annual Spring for Health Luncheon at the Fairmont Olympic Hotel in Seattle. The fundraising luncheon will feature keynote speakers and Bastyr alumni: Peter Bongiorno, ND, LAc — considered by many the world’s expert on natural medicine and depression — and his wife Pina LoGiudice, ND, Lac, who has made multiple appearances on “The Dr. Oz Show.” This year's theme is “Food as Nature’s Medicine,” and proceeds from the event will go toward uncompensated care at Bastyr Center for Natural Health. Dr. Bastyr left a legacy of providing care for those who could not afford it, and we are inspired to continue his legacy of generosity.
  • Bastyr Book Journey – The Spring for Health Luncheon will also be the site of the kickoff of our Bastyr Book Journey, a symbolic event meant to signify the spreading of Dr. Bastyr’s messages and teachings beyond Seattle. Between May and September, our network of alumni on the West Coast will carry one of our namesake’s favorite books, Return to Nature by Adolph Just, from Seattle to San Diego, where it will arrive in time for the grand opening of Bastyr University California.
  • City, County and State Proclamation – It is not just our students, staff and faculty who will be celebrating Dr. Bastyr’s life and legacy. We are proud to announce that May 16, 2012, will be known as ”John Bastyr Day” in the city of Kenmore, in King County and in the State of Washington. Official proclamations by Mayor David Baker of Kenmore, King County Councilman Bob Ferguson and Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire will highlight the celebration. It is fitting that millions of people in the area will be able to honor Dr. Bastyr since as a natural healer he touched the lives of so many.
  • Dr. Alain Touwaide – On May 17, Alain Touwaide, PhD, a renowned Smithsonian Institution historian of sciences, will give the talk "1912-2012: The Decline and Rise of Herbal Medicine," in the Bastyr Auditorium. He will discuss how the introduction of pharmaceuticals has affected the use of medicinal plants in the last century. Dr. Touwaide is Bastyr University’s first visiting scholar through the William A. Mitchell, Jr., ND, Memorial Fund for Botanical Medicine.

“This cluster of events is a fitting way to remember Dr. Bastyr’s contribution to the field of natural medicine,” said Bastyr University President Daniel K. Church, PhD. “Each one helps highlight what made Dr. Bastyr so special to our community and beyond, and honors our University’s namesake by ensuring his legacy will last forever.”