Meet the team
At WELL+ Sonoma, our team of specialized practitioners empower the individual who is seeking optimal health and balance in their lives. We integrate proven holistic modalities and integrative therapies to help our community to achieve their health and wellbeing goals.
At the age of 16, chronic illness and obesity led Deacon to a fateful meeting with a local Ayurvedic doctor, which created a seismic shift in Deacon’s perception of food, health and physical balance. Heeding the advice of his doctor, Deacon modified his diet, started to practice yoga and shed over 140 pounds. To Deacon, Ayurveda and yoga together just made sense. Once he was educated and empowered to understand what was causing him to be sick, the steps to reclaiming his health were clear and simple.
Deacon’s momentum in Ayurvedic studies continued at Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield, Iowa. Although he always knew that he would become an Ayurvedic practitioner at some point in his lifetime, it was a 16-year career working in the trenches of New York City advertising agencies that gave him the wherewithal to strike out on his own. Working in the world of global advertising and branding, he was able to hone his communication skills, enabling him to convey the complex ideas and concepts of Ayurveda and Yoga in a very comprehensive manner.
Deacon is the author of A little bit of Ayurveda and believes in a practical approach to Ayurveda and Yoga. He teaches Hatha at WELL+ Sonoma, and brings the Yoga studio experience anywhere in Sonoma and Napa counties with The Yoga Van.
Dr. Ginger Schechter is a California native, board certified in Internal Medicine, with 17 years of experience treating patients in Western Medicine. She currently resides in Santa Rosa, CA where she works with Deacon Oakley-Carpenter on bridging the gap between Eastern and Western Medicine to provide a more wholistic approach to healthcare. She is also the lead physician with the Re:mind program from Affrimativhealth. In this capacity, she works with patients from all over the world who are struggling with early memory loss or a diagnosis of early dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. Through the use of diet and lifestyle changes, reversal of disease or prevention occurs.
Dr. Ginger lives with her husband and youngest son, her oldest son now residing in Boston and attending the Berklee College of Music. Dr. Ginger has rheumatoid arthritis and applies her knowledge or both the east and west to affect a greater change in her own health. It is her purpose to help you find your best health.
Lorelle Saxena loves boots, bicycling, and beet greens. The weekends she loves best are spent working in the garden and the kitchen with her husband Adam, their young son Kamal, and their busy puppy, Belly.
Lorelle was voted "Best Acupuncturist in Sonoma County" five years in a row in the North Bay Bohemian's annual Reader Poll. She holds both a master's and doctoral degree in Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine. Her work focuses on empowering patients to overcome health challenges through self-reflection, acupuncture, and subtle lifestyle shifts. Her training includes rotations at the San Diego Memorial Hospice, the UCSD Owen Clinic for HIV and AIDS patient care, and a free clinic for low-income senior citizens.
Lorelle's clinical practice is grounded in empathy, a keen interest in all things human, and an intention to raise the standard for healthcare everywhere. Her proudest accomplishment is being a nice person most of the time.
Kristi Dee Doden is a Communications and Stress Management Specialist and Certified TRE® Provider. As a seasoned Communications Coach, Kristi has helped clients deal with difficult personalities and situations from the boardroom to the bedroom, from CEO’s to ex’s, from revitalizing marriages to guiding respectful separations.
Kristi is committed to helping professional business women communicate more effectively, have greater impact in their world, and maximize their vitality to enjoy life beyond work with those that matter most to them.
As a Certified TRE® provider, Kristi integrates Somatic Therapy, Neuroscience and Conscious Communication to help you release chronic stress, tension and core patterns that may be impacting your energy, your focus and productivity and most importantly your happiness in your life and relationships. Sleeping deeper, restored energy and focus, reduced anxiety and emotional reactivity, along with freedom from pain are a few of the many benefits of learning TRE- Tension Release Exercise System. See videos below regarding the benefits of working with Kristi for both relationship communication and TRE support.
Alicia is a Certified Holistic Health Practitioner, and a Licensed Massage Therapist specializing in CranioSacral Therapy, Visceral Manipulation and Manual Lymphatic Drainage. At the age of 19, she began her journey into holistic healing as a response to her own health challenges, and desire for non-invasive treatment. This first exploration into holistic health was life changing, as she found both wellness and her career inspiration.
In 1999, Alicia discovered the profound healing effects of hands-on bodywork techniques. She practiced a variety of modalities, prior to falling in love with CranioSacral Therapy and Visceral Manipulation. She completed much of her early education at the (IPSB) International Professional School of Bodywork in San Diego, CA and established a practice there in 2000. As a lifelong learner, she continues her education in manual holistic therapies at the Upledger and Barral Institutes.
Alicia’s passion for CranioSacral Therapy and Visceral Manipulation has grown through the profound healing she has experienced in her own body, as well as the measureable results her clients experience. She works with humans from infancy through end of life. The human body and its capacity for healing are a source of endless fascination for her. Her mission is to assist her clients in their process of self-discovery, so they may realize their highest potential.
Dr. Kimberly Hoffman Karuna, ND (previously Dr Kimberly Hoffman) was voted “Best General Practice Physician” in Sonoma County two years in a row in the North Bay Bohemian’s annual Reader Poll (2017-2018) and was named as one of the Top Doctors in Preventative Medicine and Naturopathy in Sonoma Magazine in 2016.
Kimberly offers a uniquely transformative and compassionate approach to health care that uses holistic solutions to treat YOU, not just your symptoms. She has a keen ability to understand the underlying cause behind your symptoms and uses her expertise and intuition to piece together the patterns of imbalance that will help guide you along your own unique path to health and healing. Symptoms are best thought of as “signs” that we are out of balance. Resolving those symptoms involves realigning our body, mind, spirit and soul so that they return to a state of coherence and harmony with one another. This process of realignment typically requires optimizing nutrition, implementing necessary lifestyle modifications, restoring hormone balance, and reprogramming the nervous system. In her work with patients, Kimberly incorporates her training in naturopathic medicine, energy medicine, and her training as a transformational life coach to restore the health and communication between the mind, body, spirit and soul. Her greatest gift is helping others realize their highest health potential so that they can begin experiencing a level of health and vitality they need to live a life filled with more fun, freedom, ease, joy, passion and purpose.
Kimberly regularly offers educational talks and workshops throughout the greater community to increase awareness of the ways in which we can improve our own health as well as the health of our communities and the planet.
Ryan's training as a Licensed Certified Massage Therapist and Health Educator was completed through a 900-hour program at the National Holistic Institute. He trained in a variety of modalities, specializing in Swedish, deep tissue, sports massage, myofascial therapies (MFT) and prenatal massage. Uniquely, Ryan also specializes in pre- and/or post-ceremonial/retreat integration via bodywork. Ryan is able to create a personalized session using a variety of modalities to suit your individual needs and address any challenges you face.
Ryan has been invested in the healing arts for his whole life. As a child, receiving massage therapy was his primary pathway to healing. Ryan finds it so rewarding to share the wonderful process of massage therapy with his fellow humans. He looks forward to working with you in your path to optimum wellness.
In the ten years before finding yoga, Shane Davis was an anatomy buff (elbow deep in cadavers), a student of classical piano and a hiking fiend. When he came to yoga he immediately loved the fusion of physical discipline with spiritual practice, but with little knowledge of technique and a high degree of tension in his body, Shane tore pelvic muscles, spending a year in arduous recovery. Through psychosomatic therapy, he unraveled deep webs of emotions that caused so much physical tightness, and healed the wounds of body and mind. After recovery, he serendipitously found teachers that would root him in the foundations of asana.
Finding grounding strength in fundamentals, he learned asana could also be a therapeutic modality in itself. Shane has ventured out into the world of Acrobatic yoga, a practice that requires trust and faith in self and others as a way of deepening connection and relationship. Shane teaches Vinyasa, Hatha and Acrobatic yoga as well as teaching in the music and medical fields. He also practices a form of gentle acupressure, similar to what he received during his own recovery.
Michaela originally came to yoga for its physical benefits. As a long distance runner, she was suffering from back and hip pain. Through regular practice, her body started feeling better and she found more ease in her running. In the process of the physical practice, she also discovered the mental benefits of spending time on her mat.
Michaela’s practice taught her to breathe through discomfort, to find her own power and to let go of the inner voice that was telling her “you’re not good enough”. But it wasn’t until Michaela was diagnosed with Stage 3 breast cancer in 2015 that she truly became open to the possibility of living life to the fullest potential. Her yoga practice has changed immensely after surgery and radiation but it has supported her through over a year of treatment and into recovery.
Michaela has been teaching yoga for 8 years and has received all of her training through Baron Baptiste. Before teaching yoga, Michaela worked as a personal trainer for several years, which enables her to teach from a strong background in anatomy and therefore keep students safe in their practice.
Michaela strongly believes in finding a balance of strength and ease on and off the mat. Through encouraging students to listen to their own bodies, they are able to find that balance between getting out of their comfort zones toward a place of growth on one hand but feeling safe to modify and take child’s pose on the other.
Are you a Sensitive Soul looking for more comfort and joy in yourself, and the world around you? Offering eco-friendly skin care and massage services is Katrina’s way of honoring her lifelong friendship with plants and Nature, while helping her clients to show deep compassion and connection to themselves. Her hope is to also deepen their compassion and connection to others, and to our natural world. Katrina feels she is creating greater health and wholeness for herself, too, by showing her love for others through caring touch.
Her specialty is working with people with allergies, reactive skin, or an otherwise sensitive system, who thrive on a slow simple approach.
Katrina’s sessions utilize minimal technology, organic ingredients, and lots of immune-boosting, body/spirit balancing, nurturing touch.