The Association

We are a not-for-profit, volunteer-run organization dedicated to providing self-regulation for professional herbalists, as well as guiding and ensuring the success of professional and hobby herbalists within the province of B.C.

Originally named the Canadian Herbalists Association of BC (CHA of BC), the association was registered under the Societies’ Act of BC in November of 1972 and then incorporated in February 1973.

In 2020, a vote was put forward and passed during the AGM to change the name to the British Columbia Herbalists Association (BCHA). This change was brought about because we were the only provincial association to use the word Canadian in its name and this misled many people, leading them to believe we were a national organization.

The association’s founding members were then Dominion Herbal College (DHC) President Ella Birzneck and DHC alumni Rudy Halwas, Ken Ward, Arthur Thrun and Michael Berman and the first official meeting was held at the office of the DHC.

Over the years many notable herbalists have been involved in the executive of the BCHA, amongst some of whom were Edward Moxy, Keith Coan, Laurel Morris, Kathy Dean, Gillian Leverkus, Arman Ayaltin, Judy Nelson, and Katolen Yardley who served as president from 2013 to 2019.

While membership has waxed and waned over nearly five decades of operation, recent times have seen an upsurge in membership numbers and activity - all of which helps to establish herbal medicine’s important position within BC healthcare.

Since 1973 we have operated as a voluntary, self-regulating body striving to advance knowledge and professionalism within the industry. We do this by providing standards of practice, a code of ethics, and certification oversight for herbalists who wish to practice Western Herbal Medicine under a set of unifying professional guidelines.

In addition to being a source of professional legitimization, the BCHA works to be a voice for herbal medicine through education and advocacy. We provide a collective voice at various government levels and partner with allied organizations to promote the profession of herbal medicine. We promote public awareness of herbalists. We ensure that herbal medicine is a viable option in the maintenance of optimal health.

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