It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Dr. Leon I. Hammer. Dr. Hammer’s light has shone for the last 98 years, and we are all better off for having known him. His legacy is one that truly inspires and he will be remembered eternally.

Please keep his loving wife, Ewa, and his whole family in your thoughts and prayers.

At Dr. Hammer’s request, in lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Dr. Leon Hammer Legacy Fund, with funding going to continue his life’s work at Dragon Rises College.

Leon Hammer, MD (1924-2023) is a graduate of Cornell University, Cornell Medical College, and the William A. White Institute of Psychoanalysis and Psychiatry. In the early 1970’s, Dr. Hammer began a study of Chinese Medicine in England and traveled to study in China in 1981. He studied with the internationally acknowledged Chinese master Dr. J.F. Shen over a period of 27 years. After retiring from his practice of Chinese medicine, Dr. Hammer has devoted his time to writing and teaching.

Dr. Hammer was first published on the subject of Chinese medicine in the American Journal of Acupuncture in 1980. His book, Dragon Rises Red Bird Flies, has become a classic in the field; his second book, Chinese Pulse Diagnosis, A Contemporary Approach, has been described as a seminal work. His third book, The Patient-Practitioner Relationship in Acupuncture, unpacks the “sacred space of the client-practitioner interaction.”

He has lectured and taught throughout Europe, Australia, Japan as well as the United States. In 1984, he served as a member of the Commission for Evaluation of Acupuncture Schools, and in 1995, he was appointed a member of the National Blue Ribbon Committee for Initiation of the Herbal Examination. From 1991 to 1998, he served as a member on the New York State Board of Acupuncture.

In 2001, Dr. Hammer received an award as “Educator of the Year” for participation and contribution to excellence in education from the American Association of Oriental Medicine. In 2002, he received an award from the Traditional Chinese Medicine Foundation for “Building Bridges of Integration” between Oriental medicine and Western Medicine.

Dr. Hammer helped found Dragon Rises College of Oriental Medicine in 2001.

Dr. Hammer’s vision distinguishes the school by its strong focus on diagnosis, especially Contemporary Chinese pulse, and its curriculum, Contemporary Oriental Medicine®, that stresses psychology and integrates parts of various models of Oriental Medicine.

Articles & Books by Dr. Hammer
Contemporary Oriental Medicine Foundation