Dr. Newman earned her MD degree (1980) and her B.H.Sc. degree (1974) in nursing from the State University of New York (Downstate Medical Center), and her AAS degrees at Westchester Community College in 1972. She performed surgical training at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston (1980-1984), which included a year of research in gastrointestinal physiology. She completed her surgical residency at the Medical Center Hospital of Vermont (1985-1988). She is a Diplomat of the National Board of Medical Examiners, a Diplomat of the American Board of Surgery, and a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and of the International College of Surgeons.

Early in her career, Dr. Newman worked as an intensive care nurse in neurological and cardiothoracic surgery, and in emergency room care (1974-1980). On completion of her surgical residency, she entered private practice in Butte and Missoula MT (1988-1993). In 1993 she suffered a career ending injury. She subsequently evolved her career into the field of behavioral medicine (1993-present) and became a Diplomat of the American Board of Holistic and Integrative Medicine in 2002 (2009). Her study included Yoga and Tibetan Buddhism with multiple spiritual masters, including the Dalai Lama. Realizing the health benefits and the need to put these teachings into a nonsectarian format, she completed her M.A. degree in Integrated Arts and Education at the University of Montana (2005). She teaches workshops nationwide on spirituality and health and the physiology of stress and the treatment of stress-related diseases, which is the cornerstone of her current professional work.