Meet the Founder
Leah Kittle Schumacher has been a Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist for more than a decade. She completed her Bachelor of Science in Nutrition with a Dietetics emphasis at Carson-Newman University and graduated magna cum laude. She followed this with a Master of Science in Nutrition Science with a concentration in Public Health Nutrition at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. She completed her dietetic internship while working on her Master's degree at the University of Tennessee.
She began practicing in clinical nutrition at the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville (UTMCK) working with cardiac patients before moving into work with the critically ill patients. Her move into the intensive care units is when she first sat for and successfully passed her Certified Nutrition Support Clinician (CNSC) exam.
During her time at UTMCK she was also actively involved with the hospital's marketing department. She could be found presenting to community organizations and local corporations as part of the health outreach and employee wellness programs. She commonly appeared on the local news discussing nutrition, sometimes even appearing on more than one network on the same day.
The fact that UTMCK is a teaching hospital and research institution allowed her to also pursue endeavors in nutrition research. Her most notable research accomplishment was as a member of the team responsible for Code Brown: Incidence of Diarrhea in Critically Ill Patients on Defined Enteral Formulas, which was presented at the 2014 American Society of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition Clinical Nutrition Week as an oral presentation. She also completed an oral presentation of original research at the American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo, as well as authored articles for Support Line, a publication of the Dietitians in Nutrition Support practice group of AND.
After spending eight years at UTMCK, Leah and her family moved to Southern California. Her career took her into the world of academia when she was offered and accepted a faculty role as an adjunct professor at the University of Southern California (USC). During her time at USC, she taught Fundamentals of Nutrition: Macronutrients, Fundamentals of Nutrition Screening and Assessment, Medical Nutrition Therapy Lab, and oversaw Field Practicum for the Davis School of Gerontology. These courses were all part of the Master of Science Degree: Nutrition, Healthspan, and Longevity Coordinated program. She also taught Nutrition and Health for the USC Keck School of Medicine.
Leah and her husband had dreamed of making Charleston, South Carolina home for many years. In early 2017 this dream became a reality. With new locations came new opportunities and Authentic Nutrition of Charleston was born.