Banishing Stress and Pain

A decade ago, Suzanne “Sudy” Dostal ’69 never dreamed that one day she would be running a complimentary health care clinic in Monterey. But like so much in her life, unexpected events emerged as new opportunities—and the challenge to develop the skills to make them a success.

Over the decades, Sudy’s life has been packed with accomplishments. After graduating from Scripps, she traveled to Africa and worked with Dr. Louis Leakey, the famed archeologist and anthropologist. Returning home, she built an impressive career in the entertainment industry, producing numerous network television shows and feature films. Along the way, she also established her own business, Retro-Reproductions, which reprints vintage theatrical movie posters.

Then, several years ago, in the midst of her thriving career, Sudy’s mother faced a critical illness. Later, her brother was diagnosed with stomach cancer, and died soon thereafter. In helping both her mother and brother during these difficult times, Sudy experienced first-hand the limitations of traditional medicine; she also recognized the need for a clinic that puts the patient first and that seeks a sound alternative to conventional medical approaches.

In 2003, Sudy teamed with Michelle Brown, M.D., to found the Lemuria Health Institute in Monterey, California, which offers integrative and interventional medical care to those who suffer from acute and chronic pain. The focus at Lemuria is on providing harmony, wellness, healing tranquility, and overall rejuvenation. Today, Sudy manages all of the business and creative affairs for the Institute.

“Stress and pain are things we have to manage on all levels, in different degrees, at different times in our lives,” Sudy says. “Stress management should be part of what we learn early in our lives.”

Along with managing Lemuria, the former Scripps student body president produces a 30-minute television series, Monterey Medicine, which educates a wider audience to the considerable benefits of this pioneering new area of health care. Lemuria brings Sudy’s work full circle—applying her media and management skills, not just to develop programs, but to touch people’s lives directly, one by one, in a completely new way.