The Thirlby Team

We're pleased to meet you, get to know us below . . .


Almila Kakinc-Dodd

Founder, editor-in-chief, & illustrator

Almila Kakinc-Dodd is the Founder, Editor-in-Chief of The Thirlby. She is also the author of the book The Thirlby: A Field Guide to a Vibrant Mind, Body, & Soul. She is currently pursuing her Master’s in Nursing as a Dean’s Scholar at John’s Hopkins University.

Her undergraduate is in Anthropology & Literature from Mount Holyoke College, which she has further enriched through her Integrative Health Practitioner training at Duke University.

She lives in the Washington, D.C. Metro Area, where she regularly contributes to various publications. She is a member of Democratic Socialists of America and urges others to join the movement.



Tiffany Bassford

Food editor

Tiffany Bassford is a Certified International Health Coach and Gastronome. After moving to Italy to earn her Master of Gastronomy degree, she continued her research in Japan, studying healthy food cultures to understand how to adapt those lessons to the American table. Tiffany’s approach to the table is one of grace, amusement, and curiosity. She believes that the table provides a meeting place for us to better understand who we are as eaters and how we show up in life. Tiffany founded Food Passion Project to coach busy, passionate women to invite pleasure back to the table. Her coaching practice pairs food knowledge with food pleasure to create meaningful relationships with food and yourself that endure. You can learn more about her book here, Food Passion Project: A Guide to Repairing Your Relationship with Food at the American Table.




Maya Oren

Art & visuals director

Maya Oren is the creative director behind MOJALVO a visual marketing agency focused on creating content + experiences for the culinary industry. Maya grew up in New England, and has lived around the world spending time in Tel Aviv and Barcelona. In her spare time, she enjoys practicing yoga, taking long walks around her city of DC, and drinking coffee from local coffee shops. She is passionate about supporting local business and purveyors, and believes in supporting local economies by shopping small.



Natalie Vargas

WEB & graphics designer

Natalie Catalina Vargas is a graphics designer and creative living in Washington, DC. She graduated from Loyola University Maryland with a BA in Public Relations and Advertising, along with a Writing Minor. In an effort to fill a creative void, Natalie created a blog to share sartorial and interior inspiration, and after a few years, began helping others elevate their work through beautiful design She's inspired by retro frivolity, mid-century modern interiors, good design, and her outrageous collection of ephemera.



Ariella Elovic


Ariella Elovic is an NYC-based illustrator and founder of The Cheeky Blog. She holds a BFA in Communication Design from Washington University in St. Louis. Her favorite subjects are spunky New Yorkers and their dogs, delicious looking food, and her own personal musings on the everyday.




Cameron Kakinc-Dodd

contributor &  the thirlby podcast producer

Cameron Kakinc-Dodd is a journalist and local newspaper reporter whose work currently focuses on criminal justice, court systems and the law. He’s also reported on immigration, indigenous peoples, geopolitics and much more. Broadly, Cameron is interested in understanding power and the systems limiting the ability of people and communities to live healthy, happy, and dignified lives. 

Cameron is a member of Democratic Socialists of America and urges others to join the movement.



Dr. Abigail Egginton, N.D.

science & medicine editor

Dr. Abby Egginton is a licensed Naturopathic Doctor practicing in NY and CT.  She earned her doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine from Bastyr University in Seattle, Washington and did a residency in Naturopathic Oncology at Indiana University Cancer Center in Goshen, IN. She has also completed advanced training in women’s health and homeopathy. She is an accomplished educator and enjoys teaching people about naturopathic medicine and how it offers people options for their health concerns. To learn more about Dr. Egginton and her practice, visit her practise below.



Dr. Beth Ricanati, M.D.

science & medicine editor

Beth Ricanati, MD's debut book, Braided: A Journey of a Thousand Challahs chronicles her journey of a thousand challahs and one woman’s quest for wellness and peace. This physician-mother has built her career around bringing wellness into women’s everyday lives, especially busy moms juggling life and children.  She has practiced at the NY-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center, the Cleveland Clinic, and now at the Venice Family Clinic. In addition, her writings have appeared in peer-reviewed medical journals and many lifestyle blogs. Ricanati lives in the Los Angeles area with her family and one challah-loving dog.

website & blog


Dr. Patti Kim, N.D., LAc

science & medicine editor

Dr. Patti Kim blends her studies in Studio Art, her background in Eastern and Western medicines and her passion for healing to truly practice the art of medicine with her patients. As a Naturopathic Doctor and Chinese Medicine Practitioner/Acupuncturist, Dr. Patti works with patients to peel away the layers to get to the root cause of symptoms, imbalance and disease. Health and healing are about seeing the entire person as a whole and Dr. Kim uses tools like botanical medicine, nutraceuticals, homeopathy, hydrotherapy, nutrition, functional medicine testing and acupuncture to reconnect the mind and body and to guide her patients towards balance. Dr. Patti works with her patients as a teacher and guide to help achieve long term wellness. 




Our rotating & ever-growing list of additional contributors are listed below. If you would like to regularly contribute or apply to be a part of the editorial team, please contact our team at

We're looking forward to hearing from & working with you.

Ava Mirzadegan

Evie Bettman


Kristy Mucci

Linda Geddes

Ashley May

Bailey Mennona

Carrie Arnold

Denarii Moore


Jasenka Zubcevic

Christopher Martyniuk

Michelle Gerrard-Marriott

Michelle D’Avella

Miriam Chan

Sarah Schoppe-Sullivan

Shanta R. Dube

Sophia Stephens

Sophie Mitra

Steven Stack

Yewande Okuleye

Martha Henriques

Olivia Howard

Patti Kim

Rachelle Robinett

Sharona Hoffman

Shervin Assari

Sophie Cousins

Valerie Brett Shaindlin

Zarrin Tashnim

Chelsea Tubbs

Farah Albani


Maryam Ajayi







Maisha Z. Johnson

nisha ahuja