The Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA) today announced the officers newly elected to its 10-member board of commissioners.

COMTA accredits educational institutions and programs offering instruction in massage therapy and bodywork.

The new officers are:

Melissa Wade, chair. Wade is vice president of compliance with Steiner Education Group. She has 20 years’ experience in the massage profession. Wade  graduated from Appalachian State University and has a bachelor’s degree in business administration.

Bernadette Della Bitta Nicholson, vice chair. A massage educator for 14 years, Nicholson is director of massage therapy at Springfield Technical Community College and a faculty member at the Kripalu Center in Lenox, Massachusetts. She has a master’s degree in health and wellness promotion.

Kathleen Kavanagh, secretary. Kavanagh is an instructor at Milwaukee Area Technical College. Her degrees include a Ph.D in educational psychology, masters’ degrees in clinical psychology, educational technology and instructional design, and a bachelor’s degree in physical therapy.

The board comprises people with experience as practitioners and administrators, as well as employers and members of the general public. Schools accredited by COMTA elect the commissioners, and then the commissioners elect the exeucutive committee.