about dr. brenda stockdale

As the Director of Behavioral Medicine at regional and nationally recognized cancer centers, Dr. Stockdale synthesizes relevant research into clinical practice through the design and implementation of evidence-based biobehavioral programming. As a result of this rigor, her work is nationally recognized and endorsed by leading specialists in multiple disciplines. For two-decades her programs have been implemented in major cancer centers and other healthcare organizations. In addition to her private practice, Stockdale is a consultant for corporate and health care organizations and developed a health psychology program for primary care settings specializing in preventive medicine, autoimmunity and stress-related conditions.

Stockdale was the clinical assistant for the national psychoneuroimmunology program Getting Well and later, as the National Program Director for ECaP (founded by Bernie Siegel, MD), Brenda designed ECaP’s first hospital-based psychooncology program (instituted at The Helen & Harry Gray Cancer Center of New England, treating 50,000 patients annually) and co-created ECaP’s national retreats for people with life-challenging illness.

Brenda’s flagship 6-week program, featured in her book, You Can Beat the Odds, has been praised by Harvard scientists, oncologists and epidemiologists as “as a prescription, in and of itself, for maximizing one’s health” and “the health book to read this year.”


Brenda has been featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show, NPR, ABC radio and in a variety of print media including Bottom Line Health, Good Housekeeping, ‘O’ The Oprah Magazine and Natural Health.

In addition to being a keynote speaker at wellness, corporate and special interest conferences, Dr. Stockdale is a keynoter and presenter at medical conferences (CME) on the role of behavioral medicine in prevention, oncology, cardiology, and more. For all working in healthcare, she champions a “heal the healer” focus on preventing burnout and best-practices for self-care. While Stockdale is a clinician in the field of behavioral medicine, it is her own experience with life-altering and catastrophic illness that anchors the subject in an intimate way.

After receiving a scholarship to Rollins College, Brenda completed her Undergraduate degree in Behavioral Science at Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Her Graduate degree in Health Psychology was directed by Dr. Anne Webster, director of Massachusetts General Hospital’s Mind/Body Medicine program and Professor of Medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Stockdale’s Ph.D. in Human Development & Learning (with an emphasis on post-traumatic growth), was designed by Harvard developmental scientist, Ulas Kaplan, at Lesley University. Her doctoral study examined the clinical application of subliminal priming in chronic pain. She completed a clinical training program in Mind/Body Medicine at Harvard Medical School, is a Registered Expressive Arts Consultant and Educator (serving on the Professional Standards Committee), Certified Wellness Practitioner, an Honorary Professor at the Academy of Complementary and Integrative Medicine, and the recipient of a Hambidge Fellowship.


You Can Beat the Odds: Surprising Factors Behind Chronic Illness & Cancer—the 6-Week Breakthrough Program for Optimal Immunity, Sentient Publications, 2009.

Writing in Physical and Concomitant Mental Illness: Biological Underpinnings and Applications for Practice. In Luciano L’Abate and Laura Sweeny(Eds.), Research on Writing Approaches in Mental Health(2011). Emerald Group Publishing, Bingley, UK.

“Facing Pollyanna: When Positivity Hurts—Finding a Balance in Psychoeducational Programs,” Wellness Management: A Publication of the National Wellness Institute, January 2011.

Coauthor of Headline News in Health and Medicine, a quarterly integrative medicine newsletter, and have contributed to and been cited in numerous journals, newspapers, and magazines in print and online. (Fayetteville News, Bottom Line Health, Live Living, Up in Cumming, Oprah Magazine, Good Housekeeping, Natural Health Magazine, The Futurist, Creators Syndicate, etc.)

Contributing editor, cardiologist Stephen Sinatra’s HeartMD Institute, 2015 

Proquest: Can Hope be Primed in Chronic Pain? A Clinical Application of Subliminal Priming, 2022: https://digitalcommons.lesley.edu/education_dissertations/184/