We are very proud of the accomplished professionals and educators that constitute the Tisserand Institute Advisory Board! They are not only knowledgeable; they are also actively involved in notable ventures. Here’s what Kelly Ablard has been up to lately.
Kelly Ablard, a member of our Advisory Board, is both a well-rounded aromatherapist and an accomplished scientist. She works as a research analyst, as an aromatherapy practitioner, teacher and consultant, and she is on the board of the BCAPA. She managed to combine her passion for aromatherapy with her zeal for science by studying chemical ecology – a field that is focused on communication between all living organisms on planet Earth. We were very happy to meet Kelly at the 2015 AIA conference in Denver, where we asked her about her research, current activities and her imminent trip to Peru. (Robert Tisserand first interviewed Kelly when he visited British Columbia in 2011)
“There is I feel a really strong connection between aromatherapy and chemical ecology. Oftentimes, when we’re using essential oils, it’s altering our physiological process; it’s altering our mind, our emotion. And chemical messages that animals are actually sharing with one another do the exact same thing. So plants are giving messages to each other altering each other’s behavior, mammals are altering insects’ behavior – it’s unbelievable – and plants are altering our behavior.”
Kelly holds a PhD in Chemical Ecology, an MSc in Primate Conservation, a BSc in Zoology, and is a certified and registered essential oil therapist. Her research interests are in olfactory systems, chemical communication across species, and clinical uses of aromatherapy in humans and animals. She is passionate about her research, finding sustainable essential oil sources, improving the well-being of captive animals with essential oils, and teaching the public about essential-oil bearing plants and their relationship with the animal kingdom.
“Chemical ecology is really chemical communication between species, and that includes pretty much every species on the planet – mammals, insects, bacteria, people, fish, birds – everything! It’s amazing! Right now I’m getting ready to go to Peru, I’m going down there to study aromatics in the use of Shamanic practice – shamanic rituals and ceremonies. I’m interested in visiting farms where they are doing distillations right there on the land, they are giving back to the community, and it all goes into rural development. So it’s done sustainably, it’s done organically, and I want to see…how we can give back and help other communities in Peru take advantage of that.”
For a full report on Kelly’s trip to Peru, go here, and you can find her at kellyablard.com and facebook.com/K.M.Ablard. In the meantime, we hope you enjoy her charming presence in this video interview!