Our Healers

Maestra Maricela Rios Inuma

Master Healer

Maestra Maricela Rios Inuma is of the Shipibo nation from the area of Pucallpa in the Peruvian Amazon. Her path working with plant medicines began from a very young age – she first dieted the master plant Jaguar Caspi at the age of 13 to heal from a serious illness. Working with this plant she was able to heal completely, and this was the first step in a lifelong path of learning from the plant spirits…

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Maestro Francisco Vasquez Huayta

Master Healer

Maestro Francisco Vasquez Huayta is of the Shipibo nation from the area of Pucallpa in the Peruvian Amazon. He began his path with plant medicine dieting plants such as Nihue Rau, Marosa, and Piñon to be able to help people in his commuity heal all kinds of illnesses. Don Francisco is 70 years old, a respected elder amongst his community. He has worked in this context as an Onanya for the past 27 years…

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Maestro Soi (“A Smooth Luminous Light”) Ochavano Lopez

Master Healer

Born and raised in the community of Betania, Maestro Soi was born into a family of Maestros. This intimate connection between the plants and his family lineage, gifted him his unique name that’s taken from the feminine aspect of the sacred Tree, Noya Rao. ’Soi’ refers to the soft luminous light – an accurate description of Soi’s energetic essence. 39 yrs old, Maestro Soi’s healing path began …

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Mary Julliana Vasquez Rios

Master Healer

Mary Julliana was born in 1989 in the old Aguaypa community, Iparia district, Ucayali, Peru. Her Shipibo name is San Kenguano. Her mother and her father have been healers for many years. She learned about medicine since she was 15 years old, seeing how her mother, Maricela Ríos Inuma, prepared the remedies and …

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Maestra Marina Sinti Reategui

Master Healer

Marina Sinti Reategui was born in the Yarinacocha district of Pucallpa, in the Ucayali region of the Peruvian Amazon jungle. She is the daughter of Elias Sinti Magin Doña Exilda Reategui, and her grandmother and mother were both excellent healers. She learned the medicine work of ayahuasca from her mother, and works with her husband Teobaldo help heal people …

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Maestro Teobaldo Ochavano Lopez

Master Healer

Teobaldo Ochavano Lopez was born in the Ronuya district of Iparía, in the Ucayali region of the Peruvian Amazon jungle. His father, Teobaldo Ochavano Mahua Doña Luisa Lopez Maynas, was the first bilingual teacher and shaman in his community, and his mother used plant medicines to cure and heal. All of his grandparents, on both sides, were also healers. His entire family …

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Maestra Olga Urquia Rengifo

Master Healer

Maestra Olga Urquia Rengifo comes from Roaboya, a small native community outside of Pucallpa, Peru. She has a natural gift for this work, having been immersed in the world of plant medicine since she was a young child.
Olga’s Shipibo name is “Bawan Same.” In her native language, “bawan” is the name of a brightly colored parrot that is known to have the characteristics of intelligence and kindness …

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Maestro Americo Lopez Sanchez

Master Healer

Américo Lopez Sanchez is from a town called Roaboya near Pucallpa, Peru. He also goes by the name Pekon Nima, which in Shipibo means “the many colors of nature.”  Américo is one of the healers that has chosen to share his medicine and love here at Soltara.  The story goes that Américo’s mother gave birth to him under a Shihuahuaco tree near a rubber plantation where …

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Our Advisors

Dr. Gabor Maté, M.D.

Advisor

Gabor Maté (pronounced GAH-bor MAH-tay) is a retired physician who, after 20 years of family practice and palliative care experience, worked for over a decade in Vancouver’s Downtown East Side with patients challenged by drug addiction and mental illness. The bestselling author of four books published in twenty-five languages, Gabor is an internationally renowned speaker highly …

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Dr. Dennis McKenna, PhD

Advisor: Eco-Initiatives, Permaculture and Mission

Dennis McKenna is an American ethnopharmacologist, research pharmacognosist, lecturer and author. He is a founding board member and the director of ethnopharmacology at the Heffter Research Institute, a non-profit organization concerned with the investigation of the potential therapeutic uses of psychedelic medicines. Dennis also serves on the Advisory Board of …

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Dr. Clancy Cavnar, PsyD

Integration Support

Clancy Cavnar has a doctorate in clinical psychology (Psy.D.) from John F. Kennedy University in Pleasant Hill, CA. She currently works in private practice in San Francisco, and is Co-Founder and a member of the Board of Directors of the Chacruna Institute for Psychedelic Plant Medicines. She is also a research associate of the Interdisciplinary Group for Psychoactive Studies (NEIP). She combines …

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Dr. Sharon Rafferty, PhD

Integration Support

Dr. Rafferty is a clinical psychologist licensed in the states of California and New York, with private practices in San Francisco and Oakland, CA and video conferencing capacity for clients in both states. Dr. Rafferty graduated from the California School of Professional Psychology in 2002 and holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology. Dr. Rafferty is a registered yoga teacher (RYT) …

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Our Staff

Daniel Cleland

Founding Partner | Chairman | CEO

Daniel Cleland is an international entrepreneur, traveller, and author of the book, Pulse of the Jungle: Ayahuasca, Adventures and Social Enterprise in the Amazon. Originating in Walkerton, Ontario, he has spent over a decade globe-trotting and hosting group tours all over Latin America and in the deepest parts of the Amazon to work with traditional indigenous medicine practices. After completing his Master’s of Intercultural …

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Melissa Stangl

Founding Partner | Chief Operating Officer | VP of Communications

After spending years working in scientific labs and corporate offices, Melissa realized the healing and transformative potential of working responsibly with psychedelics and plant medicine. In 2015, she consciously chose to leave Corporate America and moved to live and work in the Amazon jungle. Melissa has since used her background in engineering, science, and management to help advance the plant medicine and psychedelic movements …

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Ezio Cabalceta

Local Operations Manager

Ezio, born and raised in Costa Rica, comes from both Costa Rican oceans – Pacific and Atlantic. His father is from Guanacaste, along the Pacific Ocean, and his mother is from Limón, along the Caribbean Atlantic. As such, he considers himself a son of the ocean, and loves living a lifestyle that represents that, enjoying the ocean and taking care of it as much as he can, and sharing that same feeling with his wife and children. Since he was a young boy…

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Todd Micheal Roberts

Director of Retreats

Todd was born and raised in the beautiful Pacific Northwest of Canada.  He is a multi disciplinary visual artist and outdoor athlete. His first contact with plant medicines began in 1994 and in early 2004 he attended his first Shipibo ayahuasca ceremony. In the following month he then attended his first …

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Jocelyn Gonzalez

Facilitator | Translator

Jocelyn started on a healing path when she found herself looking for deeper understanding, lost in the high stress competitive landscape of her former life.

Having a long history working with plant medicine, it was ayahuasca that reconnected her true purpose. She found her calling and dedicated her life …

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Paola Paredes

Facilitator | Translator

Paola is a visual artist from Peru. She previously worked in local media for several years and later as freelance in independent intercultural projects. Currently her art is focused on exploring the relationship between human beings and plants as a way of ritual. Paola began her plant medicine path in 2012 …

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Jessica Francis

Facilitator

Jessica has been fascinated by people and all our vulnerable, messy magnificence for as long as she can remember. Her plant medicine journey began in Colombia in 2012, and she has since travelled extensively throughout Asia and South America, teaching yoga, listening to and learning from the …

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Sharon Slate

Preparation & Integration Therapist

Sharon Slate was born and raised in Alberta, Canada. She has been a Psychologist for 15 years and for the last 3 years has been exploring the therapeutic use of psychedelics to help clients. She primarily works with people who have experienced trauma and works to help them navigate their healing journeys …

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Sean Chiddy

Psychotherapist | Integration Support

Sean Chiddy is a psychotherapist providing integration support to guests in preparation for their retreats and when they return home. He has also facilitated retreats at Soltara and specialises in combining applied mindful and other psychological approaches to help people confidently navigate the medicine space and get the most from their experiences …

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Beto (Porras) Matarrita Gilberto

Head of Maintenance & Groundskeeping

Porras Matarrita Gilberto, also known as Beto, comes from Pueblo Nuevo, a very rural small town located about 20 minutes from Soltara. He grew up working on a farm and loves this type of work, connecting with nature and making a farm look beautiful. When he is not making sure all is running smoothly at Soltara, that is his work and passion. He also enjoys …

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Jesse Radford

Chef | Graphic Designer

Jesse grew up in the small town community of Walkerton, Ontario only two doors down from Dan.  Attending the same elementary school together and eventually the same college in London, Ontario where he obtained his degree as a Graphic Designer in 2003.  Without even realizing it, his culinary career began at a very young age in his Grandfather’s kitchen …

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Massiel Obando Garcia

Kitchen Manager

Massiel Obando Garcia comes from a small town called Matagalpa located in Northern Nicaragua. She has lived in Costa Rica since 2009 in Playa Blanca, one of the beautiful beaches right next to Soltara. She loves cooking and everything that has to do with it, and her passion shows in the food she makes at Soltara! She loves working with local foods, local exotic fruits, organic vegetables and …

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Mayela Nunez Matarrita

Head of Housekeeping

Mayela Nunez Matarrita is from Playa Paloma, one of the beaches right next to Soltara. She and most of her family live down there, having grown up in the beautiful local community where Soltara is located. She started working in HouseKeeping at different hotels in San Jose, about 4 hours away from her home, until she found the opportunity to live …

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