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Elena Avila

“If we have enough, If we generate enough energy, the highest place we can go to is to be of service to others.”

MSN Curandera, Registered Nurse, Author

Elena Avila, RN, MSN, Curandera, is a first generation Chicana born in the barrios of El Paso, Texas.
After graduating from the University of Texas in 1976, with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Elena obtained her Master's degree from UT in 1981, and specialized in mental health. She began her research into Curanderismo in 1974, gradually incorporating native folk healing into her work as a nurse.

Elena has held many administrative positions in nursing, including Head Nurse of Psychiatry, Director of Maternal/Child Nursing, Clinical Nurse Specialist at UCLA, and Director of the Albuquerque Rape Crisis Center.
Renowned throughout the United States and Mexico as a Curandera, Elena Avila is an international speaker on the subject. She represented a paper on Nevada (Envy) in Havana, Cuba, and teaches in Mexico, Guatemala, Canada, Berlin, Spain, and England . Elena is member of the International Congress of Traditional and Folk Medicine. She was awarded the Martin de la Cruz Medal, and international honor for excellence in the practice and research on Curanderismo. Elena has taught at various universities on cultural diversity and Curanderismo.

Her book, “Woman who Glows in the Dark, A Curandera reveals Traditional Aztec Secrets of physical and Spiritual Health", published by Tarcher/Putnam March 1999, is a National Bestseller. It is the only title ever published in which a curandera reveals the ancient tradition of Curanderismo from an authentic practitioner's point of view.
In addition, Elena Avila is a poet, writer, playwright and actor. She combines Curanderismo with western medicine in her private practice. Elena has 4 children and 5 grandchildren