“Building Your Toolbox” videoconference series

Each meeting in this monthly series will focus on discussing a different pain modality with an expert. The series will be done as a videoconference using the Zoom platform, so participants can see and hear one another.

This series will be held on the first Tuesday of each month at 7:30 pm ET, beginning May 5 and ending December 1, and will be led by Gwenn Herman, LCSW, DCSW, and Bobbi Blades, a long-time chronic pain support group leader.

The calls will generally follow this format:

  • Welcome from Gwenn
  • Brief presentation from a speaker about a particular pain modality
  • Open Q&A and discussion with participants

Participants will be muted for the first portion of the event and then will be able to speak to ask questions. We encourage you to join via video, but if you’re not feeling up to it and want to partcipate without video, that’s fine.

NOTE: By registering for all or part of this series, you acknowledge and agree to the terms of our waiver.

Next Event


November 10 (note date change) 

Dr. Rachel Zoffness is a pain psychologist and Assistant Clinical Professor at the UCSF School of Medicine, where she teaches pain education for medical residents. She is an international speaker on effective treatments for chronic pain.

Dr. Zoffness serves on the boards of the American Association of Pain Psychology and the Society of Pediatric Pain Medicine. She is the author of The Pain Management Workbook, an integrative workbook rooted in science and research. Dr. Zoffness consults on integrative pain programs, runs a private practice, and leads multidisciplinary pain workshops for health providers. 

Future events

Neuroplasticity- November 10 (note date change) 

Photography- December 1 Kent Mason

Past events

October 6 – Lee Blank: Self-massage

Download the Self Massage Routine Handout >>

Lee Blank, LMT, RYT200 is a licensed massage therapist specializing in chronic pain and oncology massage. Her company, Massuage Associates, LLC offers full-body table massage, and massage for patients and families struggling with chronic illnesses. She is a registered yoga teacher as well.

Lee is a graduate of the University of Maryland at College Park with a BS in Applied Sciences. She was recently honored by the Rockville Chamber of Commerce with their Citizen of the Year award for her volunteer work with hospice patients.

September 1 – Rick Dyer: Core Strengthening 

Core Strengthening Handout

Rick Dyer, MSK, is director of CrossFit Los Altos and a personal trainer. As a collegiate baseball player, Rick was named the Conference Player of the Year in 2004. For nearly twenty years, he has been helping individuals improve their strength, mobility and overall physical function and health.

He is a member of the National Strength and Conditioning Association, and is a certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS) and certified personal trainer (CPT). In his free time, Rick loves to cook, eat and spend time with his three young sons and wife.

August 4 – Gloria Mathiesen: Aromatherapy

Gloria C. Mathiesen, MA, LMT, LAC, RYT-200, Certified Aromatherapist, Usui Reiki Master/Teacher graduated in 1997 from Irene Gauthier’s Myomassology Institute located in her home state of Michigan. She has been providing therapeutic massage services ever since.

Gloria received her MA in Mental Health Counseling and is licensed in Ohio and Arizona.  All of her modalities and trainings interweave the connection between the mind and body and how to build resilience.  She focuses on courses and workshops addressing topics including PTSD, eating disorders, addiction, chronic pain and trauma.

July 7 – Lisa Marie Price: Acupressure

June 2- Helen Hess: Medical Hypnonsis

Helen has been a certified hypnotist and hypnotherapist since 2005. She trained at the Hypnotherapy Academy of America located in New Mexico. Helen’s specialty is health hypnosis. She utilizes hypnosis to decrease pain; decrease stress, fear and worry; improve sleep and energy; enhance relationships; and change lifestyle choices for better health. Helen is a Certified Medical Support Hypnotherapist and Fellow of the International Board of Hypnotherapy. She is a member of the National Guild of Hypnotists, the Arizona Nurses Association, and is a Board Certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner.

May 4- John White is a recognized leader in the renaissance of Pilates and the integration of movement education and health. A former Martha Graham dancer, John was the Director of Movement and Aquatic Therapy at Canyon Ranch and now owns John White Movement – a progressive movement studio and teacher-training program in Tucson, Arizona. John began his study of the Pilates method 36 years ago and is a Master Teacher, having taught for the past 25 years. His students have included Olympic gold medalists, Wimbledon champs, Oscar-winning actors and actresses and members of several royal families. More often, however John is sought out for his ability to work with challenging physical conditions, such as Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, spondylitis, scoliosis, chronic pain, and rehabilitation.


Once you register, you will receive a confirmation email with the link for attending via Zoom (please scroll down to bottom of the message). If you do not receive this email or have questions about registration, please email emily@uspainfoundation.org.

Thank you to our sponsor: