Board of Directors

Volunteers Dedicating Time to the Continuation of COM

Resources for Generations to Come

Board Member Biographies

Barbara Hammer

MSOM, L.Ac., Dipl. O.M. (NCCAOM)*

Chairperson, Operations Committee
Chairperson, Education Committee

The first half century of life for Barbara primarily was spent investigating “the classroom as a healing entity,” informed by decades of intuitive healing work with children. During the second half, she began the study of Chinese medicine and learned of COM, whose secrets and revelations seem akin to her continuing questions and discoveries. Serving as president of the Foundation board is teaching Barbara that with great attention and love, COM reaches into the art of living communication and engenders the possibility for healthy community. This work feeds her intention to add truth, beauty and goodness to the excellent world soup.

Ryan Diener

MSOM, L.Ac., Dipl. C.H. (NCCAOM)*

Vice President

Ryan strives to help his patients resolve their health challenges and have a positive impact on the people in their lives. He received a bachelor’s degree in Biology from the University of Maryland, and studied Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) at Southwest Acupuncture College in Santa Fe, NM, where he obtained a Masters of Science degree in Oriental Medicine and completed an apprenticeship in acupuncture and herbology. He then completed a two-year integration course with prominent author and acupuncturist, Lonny Jarrett, Classical Chinese Medicine with Jeffrey Yuen, and is one of only 10 certified teachers in the country of Shen-Hammer Contemporary Chinese Pulse Diagnosis, which he studied closely with Dr. Leon Hammer.

Ryan is co-founder and Director of Holistic Health Associates, a health facility located in downtown Frederick integrating acupuncture, herbal medicinals and supplements, massage therapy and detoxification programs. In addition, Ryan serves as co-professor of advanced practice management for the Doctor of Acupuncture at Maryland University of Integrative Health and sits on the board of directors for the Contemporary Oriental Medicine Foundation.

In his free time, Ryan enjoys spending time with his family and friends, travel, various forms of exercise and meditation and is always up for a good movie. 

Alison Law

CPA (retired), CFE (retired)


Alison enjoyed a robust career as a certified public accountant and certified fraud examiner, working as a tax accountant and Internal Revenue Agent, until an unexpected health encounter put her in critical condition. What looked like simple yellow “pollen,” in her new accounting office on a university campus turned out to be dangerous heavy metals that had leaked from the nearby nuclear engineering cleaning room.

The day after she cleaned the walls and desk of the “pollen”, she was hospitalized with a 107 degree fever. Though she was checked for every possible disease from AIDS to various tumors and cancers, the mystery was not solved until 20 years later, when her doctor discovered high levels of uranium, thallium, cadmium, cesium, and lead in her test results.

The detoxification process of “getting the lead out” almost killed her. Alison spent months hanging in a hammock, knowing that she was dying. Years later she learned that even her doctors believed she would die.

Through this health journey, Alison met an amazing acupuncturist who also serves as faculty at DRCOM and trained closely with Dr. Hammer. Alison credits the acupuncture treatments she receives with not only saving her life but restoring a quality of life she never imagined, and for that matter, a life she didn’t expect.

Alison chose to give back to the community that saved her life.  She provides a solid accounting base for the COM Foundation and the board.

Dr. Kye Peven


Member at Large
Chairperson, Publication Committee

Dr. Kye Peven is a Naturopathic and Chinese Medicine Doctor practicing in Seattle Washington. Though trained in both western and eastern styles of medicine he finds the most meaning in the intersection between physical and psychoemotional concerns, and for this purpose the system of Contemporary Oriental Medicine is unparalleled in its diagnostic capacity and treatment capabilities. By combining this system with wisdom from other Chinese Medicine lineages, along with principles from the naturopathic tradition, Dr. Kye strives to assist his patients in the all-important journey of health.

Dr. Daniel Linder


Member at Large
Chairperson, Technology Committee

Dr. Daniel Linder’s journey as a healer began over 25 years ago when he started training in Danzan Ryu jujitsu and Seifukujitsu, a restorative bodywork therapy. His formal education includes a BS degree in psychology, a masters degree in oriental medicine, and a doctoral degree in acupuncture and integrative medicine. Other educational pursuits include Somatic Experiencing, Classical (Zheng Gu) Tuina, medical qigong, integrative cosmetic acupuncture, Contemporary Oriental Medicine (COM), and the Contemporary Chinese (Shen-Hammer) Pulse Diagnostic system.

While working as a corporate business and technology professional for more than 20 years, Dan earned an Executive MBA and certifications in Project Management & Agile development. He has extensive business experience managing teams, projects, programs, and operations. As a systems-minded professional with both strategic and tactical perspectives, he brings a unique perspective to the healing arts and sciences.

Dan continues to treat patients, teach Danzan Ryu jujitsu, and assist with Seifukujitsu trainings. His ongoing educational interests lie in classical Chinese medicine, mind-body therapies, spiritual-emotional development, medicinal bodywork, orthopedics/pain management, and the intersection of the martial and medicinal.

Jamin Nichols


Member at Large

Jamin has practiced acupuncture and herbal medicine for more than 20 years. His life’s work began with study in the Shen-Hammer pulse diagnosis system, an integral part of Contemporary Oriental Medicine (COM) as brought into the modern world by longtime mentor, colleague, and friend, Dr. Leon I. Hammer, M.D.

Finding this medicine to be a conduit that allows a deeper connection between himself and his patients, Jamin utilizes the concepts of COM in his practice to help provide nourishment and personal growth not only to many of the patients he’s been blessed with, but to himself as well.

Jamin has furthered his commitment to the medicine as an active member of the COM Foundation board which owns Dragon Rises College of Oriental Medicine (DRCOM) in Gainesville, Florida, the sole school worldwide that extensively teaches COM and Shen-Hammer pulse diagnosis as the core of its curriculum. He also serves on the Governing Board of DRCOM, where he is an active participant on the curriculum committee.

Previously, Jamin spent fourteen years working at DRCOM where he was the primary Shen-Hammer pulse diagnosis instructor, a clinic supervisor, and taught numerous other courses as well. At times he also held various administrative positions there including Clinic Director, Assistant to the Academic Dean, and Registrar, among others. 

Presently Jamin is working with Dr. Hammer on a third edition of Chinese Pulse Diagnosis: A Contemporary Approach. When travel permits, Jamin teaches the Shen-Hammer pulse system in China, Europe, and domestically. His practice is located at Aquarian Dreams, a small family owned business in Indialantic, Florida.

Dr. Tracy Soltesz

D.Ac., L.Ac., Dipl.Ac. (NCCAOM), C.ZB.

Member at Large
Chairperson, Marketing & Communications Committee

Tracy has a Bachelor degree from the University of Maryland Baltimore County in political science, legal policy and advanced journalism. She obtained her Master of Acupuncture from the Tai Sophia Institute, now called Maryland University of Integrative Health (MUIH), and obtained her license to practice acupuncture in Maryland in early 2006, where she continues to treat patients while running a multi-practitioner clinic in Annapolis. In 2016, she was a part of the first graduating class of the Doctor of Acupuncture program at MUIH. She holds a Diplomate of Acupuncture from the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM).

She has traveled throughout the world to study the ways in which our cultural, generational, and gender conditioning inform our health care decisions, training with renowned scholars of Asian Medicine including Lonny Jarrett, Ross Rosen, and Dr. Leon Hammer, MD and has ten years of post-graduate apprenticeship in the Clinical Integration of Chinese Medicine in the 21st century.

Tracy has served the profession through volunteer work since 2008, including President of the Maryland Acupuncture Society (MAS) and Chair of the Council of State (Acupuncture) Associations (CSA), a coalition of state-based acupuncture associations now known as the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) – a national federation of acupuncturists. She serves as adjunct faculty at MUIH and is the Clinical Pearls editor for the Journal of the American Society of Acupuncturists.

Maria Chah


Member at Large

Maria Chah has helped many lives to find ease in their bodies. Her professional journey began 28 years ago in the field of medical massage  therapy and now, since 2011, she is a graduate/alumni of Dragon Rises College of Oriental Medicine.

Immediately after graduating she apprenticed two years, developing her pulse and treatment diagnostic trainings, to become the owner and acupuncture physician of Chah Acutherapy, LLC where today she upholds a thriving practice in Palm Beach, Florida.

Her primary methods of care includes Dr. Hammer’s Pulse diagnostics and an array of other contemporary medical services. Maria  credits her pulse diagnostic ability as key to developing a clear successful treatment plan with a service model involving healthy routines that facilitate both physical and emotional healing.

Living by her own advise, she educates her patients with reasonable solutions and modification guidelines to help each person find their own life balances. These guiding principles incorporate acupuncture, medical massage, home care therapies, homeopathic and Chinese herbal solutions. 

In Maria’s view, to achieve mental and physical harmony, we need to account for what and how to best nourish both our internal and external environmental conditions. Though Maria’s focus is pain management, her passion to help others includes all general types of medical issues. 

Amazed by the positive outcome of this medicine, Maria is dedicated to making sure each person’s experience is safe,  comfortable and effective.

Get Started with COM

If you would like to embark upon a rewarding journey into the fascinating world of COM, please subscribe to Dr. Hammer’s series of twelve Lessons. They are completely free of charge and are a compelling and informative education on the wonders of this healing system.

Committee Volunteers Needed

The Foundation is currently looking for people with the interest and skills to serve on the following committees:

  • Community;
  • Education;
  • Publication;
  • Marketing and Communications; and
  • Technology

Members-Only Content

Board members and committee members get access to our members-only organizational discussion forums. Use the box to the right to login to your volunteer webportal.



The Contemporary Oriental
Medicine Foundation
1000 NE 16th Ave., Building F
Gainesville, Florida
32601, USA
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