Faculty & Staff

Birmingham School of Massage Faculty & Staff
Pictured from left to right
Back row: Cody Hurman, Sammie Robertson, Amanda Marshall, Jay Jones, Brandon Ward
Middle row: Rachel Relaford, Cindy Taylor, Suzie Wiggins, April Blackston, Sarar Branch, Ming Xia, Hal Richardson
Front row: LaDonna Ward, Stephanie Poss-Dobbins, Gail Vaughan

LaDonna Ward, LMT, NMT, BCTMB
Co-owner; Academic Director; Department Head
LaDonna is a graduate from The Alabama School of Massage Therapy. She is board certified with the NCTMB and is licensed by the Alabama Board of Massage Therapy. She has been an educator in the field of massage therapy since 1991.
She is also a member of The American Massage Therapy Association and currently volunteers at the national level, as well as being an active state-level volunteer since 1999.

Stephanie Poss Dobbins, BCTMB
Co-owner; Administrative Director

Stephanie is a graduate from the Alabama School of Massage Therapy. She is board certified with the NCTMB and is licensed by the Alabama Board of Massage Therapy. She has been an educator in the field of massage therapy since 1996.

Jay Jones, LMT, NMT
Jay is a graduate of The Humanities Center, Pinelles Park, Florida. He has been a self-employed massage therapist since 1993. His massage therapy practice is located near downtown Birmingham, Alabama. He has been a bodywork instructor since 1994 and is licensed by the Alabama Board of Massage Therapy.

William Henson, AS, LMT, NMT, NCTMB
William is a graduate of the Birmingham School of Massage. He is nationally certified in therapeutic and bodywork and is licensed by the Alabama Board of Massage Therapy. His massage therapy practice is located in Hoover, AL.

Madi Cowan, BA, LMT, NMT, BCTMB
Madi is a graduate of the Birmingham School of Massage. She is board certified in therapeutic massage and bodywork and is licensed by the Alabama Board of Massage Therapy. Madi has a Bachelor of Arts in Music from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She is owner of Red Mountain Therapeutic Massage located in Mountain Brook, AL.

Meghan Ryan, LMT, NMT
Anatomy, Physiology, Kinesiology, and Bodywork Instructor

Meghan Ryan is an Alabama State licensed massage therapist since 2017. She is a graduate of the Birmingham School of Massage and has also studied at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and Universidad Veritas in Costa Rica. Her passion from massage therapy comes from her fascination with the human body and the never-ending opportunities to learn about how it works.

Cody Turman, LMT, NMT
Anatomy, Physiology, and Kinesiology Instructor

Cody studied psychobiology and neuroanatomy at both UAB and Auburn University before becoming a massage therapist in 2014. Currently, he works in Homework at Dr. Robert Speigle’s internal medicine practice. For the past few years, he has aided the UAB men’s basketball team before and after games, and he helps out the YMCA with charity events and member education. He is nationally certified in therapeutic massage and bodywork and is licensed by the Alabama Board of Massage Therapy. Combining his love of bodywork and his traditional academia, he is currently pursuing Cranio-Sacral Therapy and its role in helping mental health.

Gail L. Vaughan, PA
Department Head

Gail is a licensed public accountant in the State of Alabama. She graduated from Jefferson State Jr. College with a degree in business management in 1976. She received her accounting degree from the University of Alabama in Birmingham in 1978. She has 30 years of experience as a business consultant and public accountant. She is the executive director of a large international non-profit service organization. Gail has been an instructor of business since 2004 and serves as the Head of the Business Department.

Suzie Wiggins, LMT, NMT
Suzie graduated from the Birmingham School of Massage in February, 2018. Her greatest passions are solving problems and relieving stress. She found a beautiful harmony of these passions in massage therapy and opened her first massage studio in Trussville, AL, in March of 2018. Education has always been a core element of her practice and giving back through teaching is a natural extension of her love for you.

Krissy Warren, BA, LMT, NMT, BCTMB
Krissy graduated from the Birmingham School of Massage. She is a member of the American Massage Therapy Association and serves on the board of the Alabama Chapter. She is board certified in therapeutic massage and bodywork and is licensed by the Alabama Board of Massage Therapy. Krissy received her Bachelor of Arts in Communication from the University of North Alabama in 2000.

Karen Wright, LMT, NMT
Karen graduated from the Birmingham School of Massage in February, 2015. She is a member of the American Massage Therapy Association, and she is licensed by the Alabama Board of Massage Therapy. She owns The Wright Balance Massage. She is also an administrative assistant here at BSM. Karen came from a background in the corporate arena, in the field of property development and management. She loves helping students develop business plans in order to embark on journeys to become successful massage therapists.

Ming Xia, BS, LMT
Department Head; Tai Chi instructor

Ming is a certified Chinese martial arts instructor. After graduating from Wuhan Physical Culture College in 1984 with a Bachlor’s Degree in education, he began teaching physical education classes at Wuhan Inland Waterways Navigation College. Mind has been teaching Tai Chi and practicing massage since 1981. He is licensed by the Alabama Board of Massage Therapy.

Hal Richardson, LMT
Allied Massage Modalities Instructor

Hal is a graduate of the Alabama School of Massage Therapy. He has been a self-employed massage therapist since 1996. He specializes in sports massage and injury therapy. His experience includes working with chiropractors and university athletic trainers. He is licensed by the Alabama Board of Massage Therapy. Hal was officially on the Sports Massage Therapy Team of the 2012 Olympics held in London.

Steve Harrington, LMT, NMT
Administrative Assistant

Steve is a graduate from the Birmingham School of Massage. He is licensed by the Alabama Board of Massage Therapy. He focuses on neuromuscular deep tissue, synergistic structural integration, and cupping. He is an administrative assistant here at the school He also has both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in music from the Western Michigan University and Florida State University.

April Blackston
Bodywork Assistant Instructor and Administrative Assistant

April graduated from the Birmingham School of Massage in May, 2019. She is a licensed massage therapist here at BSM, as well as an administrative assistant. She is a member of the American Massage Therapy Association.