Leigh Anne Jasheway-Bryant: M.P.H.

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Aging Gratefully episode 36: Stress Management: “Don’t Get Mad, Get Funny”: Leigh Anne Jasheway-Bryant

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Who am I, you may be asking? (Not "Who am I?" as in who are you, but "Who am I?" as in "Who is this Leigh Anne Jasheway-Bryant person and why is her name so long?)

Good question. I’d want to know the same thing if I were you. The short answer is that I am a stress management and humor expert, comedy writer, stand-up comic, and comedy instructor/coach. I have an M.P.H. degree which is either stands for masters of public health or mistress of public humor (and, occasionally, miles per hour, but only if I’ve had too many espressos). In lieu of actually getting a real job, I consult with organizations (and disorganizations) on how to use humor to manage stress, change, and conflict, and boost creativity, teamwork and morale. My mission, if I decide to accept it, is to help the world become healthier and more sane through laughter.

Every year, I speak to between 40-60 groups (mostly of people, although I have performed for dogs and once for a room full of empty chairs). I am a National Speaking of Women’s Health speaker, and regularly create presentations and workshops for educational institutions, hospitals and healthcare organizations, not-for-profit groups, and corporations. You can see a clip of one of my presentations here.

In 2003, I won the Erma Bombeck Award for Humor Writing, which probably explains why I have laugh lines on my face, my stomach, and oddly, my pancreas. I have fifteen published books and my work has appeared in more than a dozen anthologies, including the Chicken Soup series and Marlo Thomas’ The Right Words at the Right Time 2. For seven years, I was a regular humor and inspiration writer for Family Circle, and for nine years, I wrote a regular humor column for the now-defunct Comic News. These days, you can read my stuff in magazines such as Better Homes & Gardens Special Interest Publications, Pink, Diet & Fitness, and Low Carb Energy and online every week at www.quirkee.com.

For a year, I hosted my own radio program, Women Under the Influence of Laughter, on KOPT AM in Eugene, Oregon. I interviewed such wonderful people as Dr. Christiane Northrup, Janet Evanovich, Kate Clinton, Maureen Dowd, and Rita Rudner.

When not avoiding work and trying to find things I have misplaced, I teach comedy writing and stand-up, both at my local community college and online. And I run a stand-up comedy troupe, The Comedy Workout. We perform approximately every two weeks at Diablo’s in Eugene, OR. Every spring, near April Fool’s Day, I organize an annual comedy benefit, the Laff Off, and every November, I coordinate the annual Oregon Women’s Comedy Festival.

In my spare time, I hot flash.

But enough about me...