On June 21, 2008 Linda Tellington-Jones received an Honorary Doctorate degree from the Wisdom University and was granted the position of Director of the Institute for Interspecies Connection.
This unique university, licensed by the State of California, is accredited by the World Association of Universities and Colleges and the Accreditation Commission International (ACI). The university, a global learning community, is committed to the pursuit of wisdom as a way of life.
Linda Tellington-Jones, the founder of Tellington TTouch Training, has influenced hundreds of thousands of people and animals around the world with her extraordinary teachings. TTouch is a gentle hands-on technique that accelerates learning and enhances behavior, performance, and the well-being of all species, as well as deepening the bond between humans and animals. The work honors the body, mind and spirit of animals and their people.
Jim Garrison, the university's president and chairman, says of this honor bestowed upon Linda: "Wisdom University is giving Linda an honorary PhD for her decades of work with the Tellington TTouch, which has contributed enormously to what we know about both animal and human healing and behavior, and for the work she has done to expand the boundaries of inter-species communication. She is joining the university as Chair of Interspecies Connection and the Director of the Institute for Interspecies Connection."
Dr. Garrison is also founder and president of the Gorbachev Foundation/USA, which set the stage for the establishment in 1995 of the State of the World Forum, a San Francisco based non-profit institution created to establish a global network of leaders dedicated to creating a more sustainable global civilization.
Linda says of her affiliation with Dr. Garrison, "I worked closely with Jim Garrison when he was director for the Esalen Institute's Soviet American Exchange program. In the 1980s and 1990s I went to Russia as a citizen ambassador 10 times, and taught TTouch to the Russian Olympic dressage and jumping teams. I also taught a 10-day course for Russian veterinarians at the Bitsa Olympic Center, as well as working with the Moscow Zoo and the Russian Academy of Science."
When asked if this doctorate degree and director position would change anything for her, Linda smiled and said, "This has given me an umbrella under which to gather and acknowledge the gifts we receive from animals and other forms of Nature. We are now able to prove scientifically why TTouch works on so many levels what we have known intuitively for years. As director for the Institute for Interspecies Connection, it is my intention to support scientific studies and to raise awareness of the many forms of interspecies connection around the world."
Linda Tellington-Jones has been honored with numerous awards throughout the years, including the Western States Hall of Fame, American Riding Instructors Association Lifetime Achievement Award, Horsewoman of the Year Award, the American Riding Instructors Association Master Instructor Award, the Ronald Reagan Good Citizen Award and most recently, the Massage Therapy Hall of Fame. She is also a graduate of the Feldenkrais Professional Training at the Humanistic Psychology Institute, California.
Her latest book is in the field of human health: TTouch for Healthcare. In addition to writing 22 books about her work published in 15 languages, she has developed TTouch curriculum for the University of Minnesota Center for Spirituality and Healing. Linda has spent decades teaching people how to be effective with TTouch; today there are more than 1,600 certified practitioners teaching TTouch in 36 countries.
The Massage Therapy Hall of Fame recognizes Linda's contribution to the art and science of Massage Therapy.
Linda Tellington-Jones' work has its roots in a philosophy that sees all beings - humans and animals alike - as reflections of a Divine Whole. The Tellington Method was first created four decades ago as a system of animal training, healing and communication that allows people to relate to animals in a deeper, more compassionate way - a way that furthers inter-species connection and honors the body, mind and spirit of both animals and their people. The Tellington Method utilizes a variety of techniques of touch, movement and body language to affect behavior, performance, and health, and to increase an animal's willingness and ability to learn in a painless and anxiety-free environment.
Linda's highly effective and revolutionary approach to working with animals brought her world wide recognition, and it was out of this success that Tellington TTouch for humans has arisen, emerging as an important addition to the increasingly respected world of alternative healing practices.
To explain how special this award is, perhaps the wording on the perpetual trophy says it best: “In honor of those who have made a significant, meaningful difference in the world of horses.”
This year an exemplary horsewoman was nominated, and she got “the nod” unanimously from the selection committee. The nomination form that heralded Linda Tellington-Jones’s accomplishments and contributions listed her numerous presentations, lectures, awards, television appearances, videos, books and an explanation of her work that has helped horses and horse people around the world for decades.
An innovator in the horse world since the 1960s, Linda’s background includes an amazing variety of riding accomplishments, from hunters, jumpers, dressage, steeplechasing, combined training, competitive trail riding, English pleasure, Western pleasure, Top Ten placings in the world-renowned Tevis Cup 100 mile ride, to a world record in endurance she set in 1964 on a 100-mile race that remained unchallenged for seven years. Her unique background with horses includes directing the Pacific Coast School of Horsemanship in California, a nine-month residential school for riding instructors and trainers attended by international students.
Linda’s contributions to equine behavior, health and communication are recognized and acclaimed internationally; her Tellington TTouch® Training methods have been successfully used by Olympic contestants and trail riders alike. As part of Linda’s legacy, she has authored 22 books in 15 languages and has produced 26 videos of her work with animals. To help spread her work around the world, there are Tellington Method certified practitioners in 36 countries. Her current projects include teaching orphaned children in Africa how to help animals in local veterinary hospitals and animal shelters by using the Tellington TTouch Method.
Linda Tellington-Jones was completely surprised about the Hall of Fame award, thinking that she was riding in the Saturday Evening Showcase as a clinician. She was loaned a Paint horse mare from one of the California Cowgirls, and she even borrowed a cowgirl hat with glittery tiara attached. When told at the last minute that she won the Hall of Fame award, ever the consummate show person, she smiled, gathered her reins and cantered to the center of the arena to be met by Horse Expo founder and president Miki Cohen and radio and television personality Rick Lamb. Linda said graciously as she was presented with her plaque, “I'm thrilled at the honor of being inducted into the Western States Horse Expo Hall of Fame. To share my work with over 70,000 enthusiastic lovers of horses at this educational expo is a wonderful opportunity to change the world one TTouch at a time.”
Pat Parelli couldn’t attend his Hall of Fame induction ceremony at the 2006 Western States Horse Expo. Later that year he rode into the arena before Linda Tellington-Jones to accept his plaque and make a brief speech. As the two Hall of Fame recipients rode around the arena to greet the crowd, Pat Parelli on his black mare Magic did some spins, slide stops and other fancy maneuvers – but that didn’t deter Linda Tellington-Jones from keeping right up with Pat on a horse that she had ridden for about four minutes! The crowd leaped to its feet as the two performers and riders extraordinaire “strutted their stuff!”