NUNM President’s Message to Alumni

Christine Gerard, ND, President NUNM sent the following letter to NUNM alumni:

Dear Alumni:
I learned recently that Dr. Jim Sensenig (NUNM ‘78) died in his sleep Saturday night. Jim was an Elder of the naturopathic profession, studying with Drs. Bastyr, Turska, Broadwell, and Boucher. Jim served NUNM as a member of the Faculty from 1978 – 1980, Dean of Education from 1981 – 1982, and VP of Educational Services from 1982 – 1984. Jim was on the faculty of nearly every naturopathic program at some point in his career, teaching philosophy and the foundations of naturopathic medicine.
Jim was a founding member and first president of the AANP and he was the founding Dean of the College of Naturopathic Medicine at the University of Bridgeport. Jim served on the Foundations Project editorial board, established the Naturopathic Gathering, and was a spokesman for the naturopathic profession speaking at numerous conferences and testifying at many legislative licensure hearings.
Among his many awards, Jim was honored by the Profession in 1988, being named AANP’s Physician of the Year.
Jim opened his practice, Natural Health Associates, in Hamden, CT in 1986 where he practiced for many years. I met Jim at the AANP conference in the early 1990’s. After residency at Griffin Hospital, I opened a private practice in Seymour, CT. It was there, in CT, that our friendship grew. We would get together and have dinner in New Haven talking deeply about the medicine, the philosophy, and life in general. During these dinner conversations we would become so engrossed that we wouldn’t realize, until we heard a polite clearing of the throat by waitstaff, that we had closed the restaurant. Sheepish, yet undaunted, we found another place that was still open and again, we closed that one too. These conversations grounded me in many ways. Jim was a master physician and philosopher. We tested ideas and theories in these conversations that made me a better physician and teacher.
As NUNM’s newest Board member, Dr. Carrie Louise Daenell relates: “Jim is the voice in my head, driving the heart of my career in volunteer service to our profession. This is true for so many of us. He has embodied not only the science and energy of Naturopathic Medicine, but also the education, credentialing, and politics for advancing access to the medicine. His leadership brought us to this moment. His passing reminds me that, now is the time, and we are the ones to carry this medicine forward.”
We will hold a memorial for Jim in the coming days. Details will be forthcoming.
Jim, may your memory be eternal!


Christine L. Girard, ND MPH