Core Founders

The Foundation was established by friends and students of the Dalai Lama who have known and worked with him for many years. It was created with the Dalai Lama’s knowledge, endorsement and advice. We warmly welcome all who wish to support his vision for a better world to join with us in this endeavor.

Dean Alper practices business and insurance litigation with Alper & McCulloch in San Francisco. Mr. Alper and his firm are a-v rated (highest rating) and are honored by the Martindale-Hubbell Register of Preeminent Lawyers. He has served on the Board of Directors of The Tibet Justice Center, Wisdom in Action, and Spirit Rock Meditation Center. A member of The Explorer’s Club, Mr. Alper formerly worked as a guide and studied Buddhist philosophy in India and Nepal.

Erkin Alptekin is one of the foremost human rights advocates for the Uighur people of Eastern Turkestan, also known as the Xinjiang Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China. Mr. Alptekin was employed by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty from 1971 to 1994. He is one of the founders of the Unrepresented Nations and People’s Organization (UNPO), and currently serves as its General Secretary

Jan Anderson co-founded the Swedish Tibet Committee in 1967, and has founded magazines on Tibetan issues in both Sweden and Germany. He currently serves on the boards of the Orient Foundation of Great Britain and the International Campaign for Tibet, Europe. Dr. Anderson received his Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Lund, Sweden, and is a professor of Analytical Chemistry at the University of Muenster, Germany.

John Avedon is the author of In Exile from the Land of Snows, the definitive book on the Dalai Lama and Tibet since the Chinese conquest. He has edited various titles including Buddha’s Art of Healing, The Joy of Living and Dying in Peace, and The Way to Freedom, and served as the editor of The Library of Tibet, a translation series of classic Tibetan texts. Mr. Avedon’s articles on Tibet have appeared in GEO, Rolling Stone, the New York Times Magazine, Parade, and MacLean’s.

Sharon Bacon has long experience with the Tibetan exile community, including many years of service on the Board of the American Himalayan Foundation, as Vice President of Bay Area Friends of Tibet, and with the Tibetan Resettlement Project. She lives in Carmel, California.

Dana Baldwin and has worked in a number of fields over the years, including medical and psychological anthropology, culture and psychopathology, substance abuse, homelessness, women’s issues, qualitative research methods and cross-cultural research. Her current projects include a book with Lama Khemsar Rinpoche, a Tibetan Bon lama, and a book on the discovery of Tahiti. Ms. Baldwin received her PhD in Anthropology from UCLA in 1990.

Annie Bien is a writer and educator living in New York City. In the months after September 11, 2001 she created a project for peace and healing at Public School 140, incorporating Tibetan prayer flags, poetry and art. The installation was subsequently exhibited and published in ARTifacts: Kids Respond to a World in Crisis, a project by the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers and Scholastic Books. Ms. Bien is a student of Tibetan Buddhism, Tibetan Buddhist text translation, and classical Chinese.

Gary A. Bolles is a San Francisco-based consultant, writer and entrepreneur. He has served as vice president of marketing and chief operating officer of early-stage hi-tech companies, and as editor-in-chief or editorial director of four technology magazines. Today, in addition to his consulting practice, Gary and his partners in Collective Intelligence work with non-profit organizations to help them understand ways in which resources can flow more efficiently to solve social problems around the world.

Tendzin Choegyal is the younger brother of the Dalai Lama. He was named a reincarnate lama at the age of three, and underwent intensive training as a child before fleeing Tibet at the time of the Chinese invasion. Later he left the monastic life and has worked actively for the freedom of Tibet by serving in a variety of capacities, including as a resistance fighter, a Member of Parliament and secretary to H.H. the Dalai Lama. He currently resides in Dharmsala.

Marsha Clark has over 30 years experience as a Speech Pathologist, Program Specialist, Quality Improvement Trainer and Educational Consultant serving children, parents and community agencies in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is the recipient of the 1996 Valley of Hearts Education Award from Parents Helping Parents. Marsha has served as a volunteer, working with the dying and those in grief, in various hospice facilities. She received her M.A. in Education from San Jose State University.

Kim Cranston founded and manages the Institute for Organizational Evolution, serves as Chair of the Global Security Institute, and advises the Nuclear Threat Reduction Campaign, a joint project of Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation and The Justice Project. From 1996-1999, he was President of the Social Venture Network, and continues to serve on its Board. Mr. Cranston is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Los Altos Community Foundation.

Howard C. Cutler is a diplomat of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, having received his M.D. from the University of Arizona College of Medicine and completed specialty training in Psychiatry at Good Samaritan Medical Center in Phoenix, Arizona. Dr. Cutler first met the Dalai Lama in 1982 while visiting India on a research grant to study Tibetan Medicine, and is co-author with the Dalai Lama of The Art of Happiness.

Leslie S. DeWitt is a long-time community development leader in the San Francisco Bay Area. He has founded and developed a number of educational partnerships between the public and private sectors and nonprofit organizations, including the Peninsula Bridge Program, the Menlo Atherton Fire Technology Program, and the Compass Program. In 2002 Mr. DeWitt founded the Fund for Peace Initiatives, whose first project was Architects of Peace, a photojournalism exhibit now on permanent display at Santa Clara University. Mr. DeWitt currently serves as Director of Development for the Boys and Girls Club of the Peninsula.

Adam Engle is a lawyer, businessman, and entrepreneur who has divided his professional life between the for-profit and public benefit sectors. Organizations founded or co-founded by Mr. Engle include the Mind and Life Institute, the Colorado Friends of Tibet, and the Social Venture Network. He currently runs the Engle Capital Group in Boulder, Colorado. Mr. Engle received his J.D. from the Harvard Law School and his M.B.A. from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Joe Firmage has played a leading role in a number of Silicon Valley companies, including USWeb, which he co-founded in 1995 and which became under his leadership the world’s largest Internet consulting firm. Mr. Firmage received Silicon Valley’s Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award from Ernst & Young in 1998. His latest entrepreneurial venture is ManyOne, a non-profit Internet hosting service. Mr. Firmage is a founding sponsor of the Carl Sagan Foundation and the Integral Institute, and serves on the Board of Cosmos Studios.

Mary Fischer has been deeply involved with organizations that foster intercultural and interreligious understanding all of her life. The preservation of the Tibetan Culture is particularly dear to her. She is one of the founding donors of The Tibetan Studies Program at Stanford University. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and her well-cared-for Tibetan Mastiffs.

Richard Gere, actor and activist, has worked for over two decades to draw attention to the ongoing struggle of the Tibetan people for self-determination. He is the founder of the Gere Foundation, which contributes to numerous health, education, and human rights projects. Gere’s book Pilgrim, with a foreword by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, is a collection of images representing his twenty-five-year journey into Buddhism.

Susan Griffin’s many works include Woman and Nature, Pornography and Silence, A Chorus of Stones, which was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize and won the Bay Area Book Critics Award, Unremembered Country, which won the California Commonwealth Prize for poetry, and the Emmy-winning play Voices. Her most recent book is The Book of the Courtesans: A Catalogue of Their Virtues. Ms. Griffin has been the recipient of a MacArthur grant for Peace and International Cooperation. She lives in Berkeley, California.

Pema Gyalpo is a former Representative of H.H. the Dalai Lama in Japan, from 1975 to 1990, and founder of the Tibet Culture Center International, which recently commemorated its 30th anniversary. He is well known in Japan for his many books on Tibet, his columns in major newspapers, and his regular appearances on Japanese television as a news commentator on international affairs. Mr. Gyalpo holds faculty positions at Gifu women’s University, Takushoko University, Asia University and the National University of Mongolia.

Lodi Gyari has been active in the Tibetan struggle for over 30 years. In the mid 1960s he started Voice of Tibet, a seminal newsmagazine for the Tibetan exile community and one of the first vehicles to relate Tibet’s story to the English-speaking world. Mr. Gyari is past President of the International Campaign for Tibet, and currently serves as Special Envoy to His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Washington, D.C.

Janet Gyatso holds the Hershey Chair in Buddhist Studies at Harvard University. Prior to that, she taught in the religion department at Amherst College for the last 11 years. Professor Gyatso’s most current research includes a historical and theoretical study of sex, gender, and women in Indo-Tibetan Buddhism. Her Ph.D. dissertation was entitled The Literary Traditions of Thang-stong rGyal-po: A Study of Visionary Buddhism in Tibet. She received her Ph.D. in Buddhist Studies from the University of California at Berkeley.

Losang Gyatso is a designer and artist who has worked as an Art Director in New York for many years. He is an active board member of a number of organizations, including the U.S. Tibet Committee and The Tibet Fund.

May E. Gu is Chair of GMS Investment Consulting Co., in Taiwan, R.O.C. She received her M.A. in Economics from Brown University. She is a student of Chinese calligraphy and painting.

Michael Halfhill is a world travel photographer who produces audiovisual educational programs through his business Journey to Awaken—presentations that take a deeper and clearer look into the human condition while incorporating concepts that empower us with alternative ways of living thru non-violence, compassion and wisdom. He is also co-founder of Friends of the Dharma, a group that supports the plight of Tibetan refugees and the Healing Arts of Tibet.

Diane Hatz is a nonprofit marketing and special projects executive, developing creative ways to educate individuals about the ill effects of industrial agriculture while promoting the increasingly popular sustainable food movement. Ms. Hatz is also a student of Tibetan Buddhism.

James N. Heuerman is a former partner at Booz Allen & Hamilton, and a former Senior Partner of Korn Ferry International. He received his Master of Hospital Administration from the University of Minnesota.

Tony Hoeber has held senior positions at Sun Microsystems, GO Corporation, and Software Publishing Corporation in the course of his 20-year career in Silicon Valley. Mr. Hoeber has co-founded a number of companies, including Digital Paper and IQ Commerce, and holds a number of software patents.

Tony was the founding Executive Director of the Foundation, serving in that role until December 2006. In that role he built the current organization and initiated or supported most of the projects that are currently in place.

DK. Holland is a communications consultant, creative director, strategist and writer. Her nonprofit clients have included The Priorities Campaign, the Bowery Residents Committee, Pratt Institute, the Childrens Museum of Manhattan, and The Literacy Assistance Center. In 1999 she was awarded the Walter Hortens Award for Outstanding Achievement in Professional Practice from the Graphic Artists Guild. Ms. Holland is an alum of Parsons School of Design and the New School for Social Research.

Andrew and Devon Holmes are co-founders of the Sera Jey Support Committee, which provides financial assistance to monks at the Sera Jey monastery in India. Andrew is an architect, graphic designer, and photographer. Devon was a software developer and graphic designer until she passed away.  Andrew currently lives in upstate New York.

Jeffrey Hopkins is Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Virginia and former Director of the Center for South Asian Studies. From 1979 to 1989 he served as the English interpreter for the Dalai Lama on lecture tours. Professor Hopkins has written over 25 books on Tibetan Buddhism, ranging from the groundbreaking Meditation on Emptiness (1983) to Cultivating Compassion (2001). He has collaborated with the Dalai Lama as co-author, editor and translator on numerous works.

Thupten Jinpa received the highest academic degree of Geshe Lharam from Ganden Monastic University in India, and also holds a Ph.D. in religious studies from the University of Cambridge, U.K. Since 1985 he has been a principal English translator to H.H. the Dalai Lama, and has translated and edited many books by the Dalai Lama, most recently Ethics for the New Millennium. Dr. Jinpa’s most recent work is Self, Reality and Reason in Tibetan Thought.

Nawang Khechog was a monk for eleven years. He has studied Buddhist philosophy under H.H. the Dalai Lama and many other Tibetan Masters. He also spent some years as a Hermit meditator in Dharamsala. He now lives in United States. He is a teacher, activist, film maker and a Grammy nominated Tibetan composer and musician.

Margarita Kozhevnikova is a writer and translator. She is the executive editor of the journal Buddhism of Russia, and President of the Friends of Tibet society in Russia. She works at the Memorial museum of Kozloff and the history of Central Asia explorations in St. Petersberg.

Mickey Lemle is an award-winning filmmaker and television producer whose works have been shown theatrically, on television and at film festivals around the world. His films include Hasten Slowly: The Journey of Sir Laurens Van Der Post, Compassion in Exile: The Story of the 14th Dalai Lama, Our Planet Earth, and most recently Ram Dass: Fierce Grace. He holds a B.A. from Brandeis University. Mr. Lemle served in the U.S. Peace Corps in Nepal and currently serves as Chairman of the Board of the Tibet Fund.

Donald S. Lopez, Jr. is Carl W. Belser Professor of Buddhist and Tibetan Studies and chair of the Department of Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Michigan. He is the author or editor of some twenty books, including Buddhism in Practice, Curators of the Buddha: The Study of Buddhism Under Colonialism, Prisoners of Shangri-La: Tibetan Buddhism and the West, and The Story of Buddhism. In 2000 he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Sandra Magnussen has a clinical psychotherapy practice in Atherton, California. She received her PhD from the Institute for Transpersonal Psychology in 2003. Her dissertation, The Effects of the Spiritual Practice of Tibetan Buddhist Guru Yoga on the Clinical Practice of Psychotherapy, was published in 2004.

Mitchell Markus is President and co-founder of Triloka Records, which has had a series of number one releases on the Billboard and New Age Voice charts over the past decade, ranging from Eastern and Indian (Tahitian Choir, Ali Akbar Khan), to East/West Fusion (Krishna Das, Jai Uttal), African (Hugh Masekela, Tarika) and Native American (Walela, Spirit Nation). Mr. Marcus’s executive producer credits include Door of Faith, Wanderer, Hookah Café, Trance Planet, Women’s World Voices, Earth N Bass, and Meeting Rivers.

Darlene Markovich has held senior positions during her 28-year career at ALZA Corporation in marketing, human resources management, learning and development, communications and community relations. She has collaborated on numerous film projects, curated art exhibitions, and coordinated public events. In 1997, Darlene was awarded the Founder’s Award, the highest achievement within ALZA. Ms. Markovich currently serves as President of the Committee of 100 for Tibet.

Kristine McCann serves as an executive and consultant for a number of volunteer organizations. She is President of the board of the Girl Scouts of Santa Clara County, co-founder of the Georgia Travis Center, and was involved in the start-up of Santa Clara County’s Volunteer Exchange and the Nonprofit Development Center. She has also served on the board of directors of the Community Hospital of Los Gatos and as vice chairwoman of the Kids Voting Silicon Valley. She lives in Los Gatos, California.

Rajiv Mehrotra is a journalist and filmmaker who has produced numerous award-winning films, including The Great Swan, a ten-part docudrama on the life and times of Ramakrishna Paramhansa, The Awakening of Intelligence, on the work of J. Krishnamurti, and In Conversation, a series of interviews with international political and cultural leaders. Dr. Mehrotra serves as Executive Director of the Foundation for Universal Responsibility of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and Managing Trustee of the Public Service Broadcasting Foundation.

George Meyer has been writing for The Simpsons since 1989.

Judy and Richard Nall are principals in Computer Business International (CBI), a training and consulting business focusing on Web, database and security issues. Judy chaired the International DB2 Users Group conference in 1998, and both Judy and Richard speak frequently to groups around the country on information security.

Sidney Piburn is managing editor and art director of Snow Lion Publications, the largest publisher and distributor of books on Tibet and Tibetan culture. Since co-founding Snow Lion over two decades ago, Mr. Piburn has played an important role in fostering the growing Western interest in the culture and religion of Tibet. He is the author of The Dalai Lama: A Policy of Kindness and The Peace Laureates Prize and the Dalai Lama.

Rosemary Rawcliffe, Founder of Frame of Mind Films, is a social entrepreneur and  EMMY® award winning media consultant and executive producer. As a humanitarian, she has a lifelong commitment to producing and directing films that focus on  human rights, peace, and non-violence from women’s point of view. When Rosemary moved to the United States from her native England, she founded Frame of Mind Films to continue her work in America and her passion for producing stories that bear witness to spirit, hope, and courage.

Rik Roberts has held positions at a number of Silicon Valley firms. From 2003 thru early 2005, Rik served as Treasurer and Chief Financial Officer of the Dalai Lama Foundation.

Galen Rowell has been called by the Washington Post “the foremost practitioner of that hybrid art, photojournalism.” In 1984 he received the Ansel Adams Award for his contributions to the art of wilderness photography. He has published numerous books of photography, including Mountain Light (1986), and in collaboration with the Dalai Lama, My Tibet (1990). Galen Rowell and his wife Barbara were killed in a small plane crash on August 11, 2002 as they returned to their home in Bishop, California from a circumnavigation of the Bering Sea.

Stephen Rowley is Executive Director of Schools for Highline School District (Seattle). He started his career in education in 1975 as a teacher in Seattle, Washington. From 1985 to 1990 he served as a principal in the Redwood City School District. From 1992 to 2000 Dr. Rowley worked in Washington as an assistant superintendent for the Bellingham School District and superintendent for the Bainbridge Island School District. He received his Ph.D. from Stanford University in 1984.

Jack Schaub has been in the business of graphic design for 25 years. He is the principle of Schaub & Company in Los Gatos, California, which provides a range of marketing and advertising services to many Silicon Valley companies, including corporate and product identity, branding, advertising, web site design, and media planning. In the early 1980s Mr. Shaub was founding partner and creative director of video game manufacturer Data Age.

Jonathan Schell is the author of numerous books, including The Time of Illusion, The Village of Ben Suc, The Gift of Time and The Fate of the Earth which in 1982 received the Melcher book award and was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award. Mr. Schell is a regular contributor to Harper’s, The Atlantic, the New Yorker, Foreign Affairs, and The Nation. He has taught at Yale, Princeton, and Wesleyan and is a fellow at the Nation Institute and Harvard’s Kennedy School.

Orville Schell is dean of the University of California at Berkeley School of Journalism. A respected Sinologist with more than thirty five years of experience writing about China in The Atlantic Monthly, The New Yorker, and The New York Review of Books, he has won numerous awards for his China reporting, including a Guggenheim Fellowship and a Freedom Forum Senior Fellowship at Columbia University. Among his recent works are Discos and Democracy: China in the Throes of Reform, Mandate of Heaven – The Legacy of Tienanmen Square and the Next Generation of China’s Leaders, and Virtual Tibet – Searching for Shangri-la from the Himalayas to Hollywood.

Jim Schuyler is CEO of Red7 Communications, which provides technology strategy, business systems and knowledge management services to startup companies.  He was recently the VP Internet Technology for LeapFrog Enterprises, and VP Distance Learning Systems for Knowledge Universe Interactive Studio. He has founded or helped to start a number of companies, including DesignWare, Britannica Software, T/Maker’s Electronic Direct division and WICAT Inc.  He holds a PhD in Computer Science from Northwestern University.

Randy Taran founded Spring Communications in 1993 to develop and produce youth-oriented television and film programming. Her most recent ventures include, Project Happiness, an educational program that transforms lives by developing soical and emotional skills which are the foundation for a happy and productive life, The Peace Wall, the film Focused on Peace, and SpringBoard to Peace.  These programs were developed in collaboration with other groups, including The Dalai Lama Foundation and Roots & Shoots. Randy received her MBA from New York University in Marketing & International Business.

Andrey Tarentyev has devoted himself to the study of Buddhism for over 30 years in Russia. In 1975 his Ph.D. dissertation was rejected by Leningrad State University for its “lack of atheism.” In 1978, while working at the Leningrad State Museum of History of Religions and Atheism, he secretly became a Buddhist in the Tibetan tradition, which had survived in Siberia. Beginning in 1990, conditions changed, permitting him to work openly for the first time. Since then Mr. Tarentyev has founded the first Russian publishing house and journal devoted to Buddhism, published more than 50 scholarly papers, translated and edited numerous works on Buddhism, and served as the personal interpreter for H.H. the Dalai Lama in Russia.

Tenzin N. Tethong is the founder of key Tibet initiatives in the U.S. including the Tibet Fund, Tibet House-New York, and the International Campaign for Tibet. He is a former Representative of H.H. the Dalai Lama in New York and Washington, D.C., and former Chairman of the Kashag, the Tibetan Cabinet. Mr. Tethong currently serves as Chairman of the Committee of 100 for Tibet, visiting scholar at Stanford University and the President of The Dalai Lama Foundation.

Thomas Thorning has over 25 years of experience in management, business development, and community activism. He was the co-founder of R&T Marketing, a successful coin-operated toy business. Mr. Thorning holds a bachelor’s degree from Wabash College, and has completed graduate classes in Buddhist studies at the Naropa Institute and the University of Wisconsin. He serves on the board of Vajrapani Institute, a Tibetan Buddhist center in Boulder Creek, California.

Robert Thurman is a prolific translator and writer of both scholarly and popular works, including Tsong Khapa’s Speech of Gold: Reason and Enlightenment in the Central Philosophy of Tibet, The Tibetan Book of the Dead, Essential Tibetan Buddhism, and most recently, Inner Revolution: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Real Happiness. In 1987, he co-founded New York City’s Tibet House. Dr. Thurman is the Jey Tsong Khapa Professor of Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Studies at Columbia University.

Robert Tolmach has worked as an architect, real estate developer and entrepreneur.  He has now turned his full-time attention to the social sector, and is preparing to launch Glasses for Humanity, which will collect many of the nearly 300 million pair of eyeglasses, reading glasses and sunglasses that are retired in the United States each year, for distribution in the developing world.

Tom Trabin is an executive and consultant who works at federal level on national standards for mental health measures. He has organized and chaired over 20 national conferences and tradeshows, and serves as a Board member for several volunteer organizations. He received his M.M.A. in Philosophy from Delhi University, India, his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Minnesota, and his M.S.M. in Management from Stanford Business School.

Julio Cesar Torres works as an English teacher in Maracay, Venezuela. He volunteers in his community working on Tibet self-determination and peace issues.

Phillip Trimble was Professor of Law at UCLA from 1982 through 2001, and served as the UCLA Vice Provost for International Studies from 1999-2001. Prior to his academic career, he held a variety of posts in the Nixon, Ford and Carter Administrations, including Ambassador to Nepal at the end of the Carter Administration. He served as Deputy Mayor of New York City under Ed Koch in 1979-80. He has served as a Board member and advisor to many organizations, including the American Journal of International Law, the American Alpine Club, the Asia Society, the America-Nepal Friendship Society, and Human Rights Watch. In 1976 he led the successful American Expedition to Mt. Everest.

Michael Van Walt currently serves as Executive President of Kreddha; International Peace Council for States, Peoples and Minorities, and Legal Advisor to the Office of H.H. The Dalai Lama. From 1991 to 1998 Dr. Van Walt was General Secretary of UNPO, the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization. Dr. Van Walt holds law degrees from Europe and America, and is currently Adjunct Professor of International Law, Golden Gate University School of Law, San Francisco.

Alan Wallace has edited, translated, authored, or contributed to more than thirty books on Tibetan Buddhism, medicine, language, and culture. His works on the interface between science and religion include Choosing Reality: A Buddhist View of Physics and the Mind and The Taboo of Subjectivity: Toward a New Science of Consciousness. Dr. Wallace studied physics and the philosophy of science at Amherst College, and received his Ph.D. in religious studies from Stanford University.

Vesna Wallace is Assistant Professor in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara. She is the author of numerous books and articles on various aspects of Buddhist religion, philosphy and culture, including The Inner Kalachakra Tantra: A Buddhist Tantric View of the Individual. Professor Wallace received her Ph.D. in South Asian Studies from the University of California at Berkeley.

Lori Warmington is a partner in a multi-generational family real estate development company in Southern California, and a life-long community volunteer, organizer, and activist in the area of peace. The Warmington family has established an academic chair in Global Peace and Cooperation at the University of California, Irvine. Ms. Warmington is a founder of the Program in Citizen Peacebuilding at the U.C. Irvine Center for Global Peace and Conflict Studies, as well as the Aspen Grove Project/PeaceMakers’ Network affiliated with the Rudolph Steiner Foundation. She also serves as an Ambassador with the Carter Center in Atlanta, Georgia.

Phyllis Watts has been a friend of Buddhism for over 30 years. As a psychologist and owner of the consultancy Wild Swan Resources she assists leaders and their organizations in cultivating wise business practices. In 1980 she received her Ph.D., with a dual emphasis in social and clinical psychology, from Michigan State University and has since worked as a consultant, lecturer and author to bring sound psychological knowledge out of the consulting room and into the world. Currently she is at work on a book The Deeper River of Life.

Jan Willis is Professor of Religion and the Social Sciences at Wesleyan University. Recently named by Time as one of its six “Top Religious Innovators for the new millennium,” she has published numerous books and essays on Buddhist meditation, women and Buddhism, and Buddhism and race. Her most recent works include the memoir Dreaming Me: An African American Woman’s Spiritual Journey (2001) and Ending Hate: Practical Exercises and Meditations for Transforming Prejudice (with Marlies Bosh, in progress). Professor Willis received her Ph.D. in Indic and Buddhist Studies from Columbia University.