Trudy Goodman Kornfield, Ph.D.
Trudy Goodman Kornfield, Ph.D., is the Founding Teacher of InsightLA, the first center to combine training in Insight (Vipassana) Meditation and in non-sectarian mindfulness and compassion practices, including Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC). The fourth teacher ever of MBSR, Trudy taught with its creator, Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn and studied Buddhist meditation for 40 years, with Asian and Western teachers. She is the Guiding Teacher and co-founder of the Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the first center in the world dedicated to integrating these two disciplines, and had a private psychotherapy practice there for 25 years. Trudy co-founded Family Path and Growing Spirit, family mindfulness programs, with Susan Kaiser Greenland in Los Angeles, and has worked with kids and families throughout her career. Trudy teaches retreats and workshops worldwide; often teaching with her husband, Jack Kornfield. Trudy is a contributing author: Clinical Handbook of Mindfulness (Springer, 2008); Compassion and Wisdom in Psychotherapy, (Guilford Press, 2011); Mindfulness and Psychotherapy, (Guilford Press, 2013).
InsightLA Guiding Teachers Council
Allen Weiss, Ph.D.
CURRICULUM COORDINATOR, OUTREACH
Allen Weiss is a graduate of Spirit Rock's Dedicated Practioners' Program, a member of InsightLA's Board of Directors and the architect of the InsightLA web site. He is also a professor at USC and founder/CEO of an online marketing training and events company (Marketing Profs, LLC). Allen is also the co-chair of Mindfulness USC where he teaches mindfulness classes, retreats and directs teacher training and he also teaches a leadership class in the business school called "Leading with Mindfulness and Compassion." Previously, he was a professor at Stanford University, a professional musician, business consultant, technology columnist and worked at other unrelated jobs. In 2014, Trudy Goodman gave Allen (and Ron Ames) teacher transmission.
Visit Allen's Teacher Site at inside.insightla.org/allen.
DIRECTOR OF BUDDHA'S PATH
Beth has been involved with InsightLA from the start and seeing our community grow from an idea into a reality has awakened in her a deeper appreciation for what an unexpected transformation mindfulness and commitment can bring into our lives. As a member of InsightLA’s teacher council, she explores ways of bringing mindfulness and metta practice to our community in creative and innovative ways. While as director of the Buddhist studies program, she shares her interest in how ancient wisdom can support us through our everyday life struggles. She also teaches MBSR, where she is excited to observe how each new group of students learns through their own experience to embrace the present moment.
Beth began her meditation practice years ago at Ordinary Dharma with Catriona Reed in the tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh. Inspired by Thich Nhat Hanh’s teachings on compassion and inter-being and his profound capacity for forgiveness, Beth began her regular practice which now consists of long retreats with Joseph Goldstein at IMS and Jack Kornfield at Spirit Rock. She is a member of the IMS/Spirit Rock Dedicated Practitioners’ program for teachers.
Beth has been co-investigator on several research intervention studies at UCLA that looked at the impact of Iyengar yoga on breast cancer survivors with persistent fatigue and young adults suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome and depression. She began studying yoga, when she sought help for a serious medical condition from Manouso Manos, a San Francisco-based senior teacher in Iyengar yoga therapeutics. She assisted Manouso for several years in his therapeutic classes and traveled to India to assist in the medical classes taught by BKS and Geeta Iyengar at the Ramamani Iyengar institute in Pune. Having experienced the healing benefit of Iyengar yoga firsthand – and eager to help others suffering from pain - she became a member of the UCLA Pediatric Pain Program clinical team and Whole Child LA, where she continues to teach mindfulness and yoga to children and young adults with chronic pain and health problems in an integrative medical setting.
Visit Beth's Teacher Site at inside.insightla.org/beth.
Maureen Shannon-Chapple, M.S., has worked with children, families, and adults in a variety of contexts including 20 years of classroom teaching at Chadwick School. She taught parenting classes at LAUSD, child development at College of the Canyons, and children's literature at Loyola Marymount University. A long-time practitioner of yoga and meditation, Maureen completed the Community Dharma Leader program at Spirit Rock Meditation Center in 2008.
Maureen leads the Tuesday Night Sitting Group at Loyola Marymount University.
Ron Ames is a meditation practitioner who has studied with both Trudy Goodman and Noah Levine. He is currently a member of Spirit Rock’s Dedicated Practitioners' Program. Ron serves as a member on InsightLA’s Executive Committee and Advisory Board. He is a teacher in training with Trudy Goodman in InsightLA’s first teacher training cohort. Ron has a deep interest in the "Twelve Steps" particularly as they relate to meditation practice. He works in the film industry as a Producer and 1st Assistant Director on feature films.
Visit Ron's Teacher Site at inside.insightla.org/ron.
InsightLA Teachers Council
Celeste has been practicing meditation since 2002, first in the Shambhala tradition and later falling in love with Insight meditation. She joined the teacher development group at InsightLA under the guidance of founder Trudy Goodman in 2011, and is a also a graduate of Spirit Rock’s Mindfulness, Meditation, and Yoga teacher training under the guidance of Phillip Moffitt, Anne Cushman, and several other leaders in the field. She teaches several classes a week for InsightLA as well as Bridges To Recovery, and also works with individuals privately. In addition, she is a Yin Yoga instructor, and has been teaching this mindful Yoga practice since 2007. She loves sharing the practice of mindfulness with others and strongly believes in the power of mindful awareness to heal and re-connect us to our own inherent sense of ease and well-being.
Visit Celeste's Teacher Site at www.inside.insightla.org/celeste/.
Christiane Wolf, MD, Ph.D.
DIRECTOR OF MBSR PROGRAMS
Christiane loves teaching mindfulness with a good dose of humor, compassion and science. She first encountered Insight and Loving-Kindness meditation in 1988. Before moving to the Los Angeles in 2003 she worked as an Ob/Gyn at the Humboldt University in Berlin, Germany.
Christiane is a certified MBSR teacher and co-founded InsightLA’s MBSR program with Trudy in 2005. She is also a supervisor and trainer for MBSR teachers at the CFM (Center For Mindfulness) at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, the “mothership” of MBSR. She teaches and trains people here in the US and also in Europe. Since it’s start in 2011, Christiane has been the Program Director of InsightLA’s VA CALM grant, a Patient Centered Care Initiative of the Greater Los Angeles Veteran’s Administration to train clinicians and staff in mindfulness and compassion.
In 2011, Trudy Goodman gave Beth Sternlieb and Christiane teacher transmission. She is also part of the current Spirit Rock/IMS Insight meditation teacher training under Jack Kornfield, Joseph Goldstein et al.
Christiane lives in LA with her husband and their three kids.
Visit Christiane's Teacher Site at inside.insightla.org/christianewolf.
Elizabeth started studying with Trudy Goodman in 2005, and joined Trudy’s Teacher Development Group in 2009. Utilizing skills developed as an attorney, and informed through meditation practice and personal experience, she advocates for more compassionate and effective community responses to young adults with mental health challenges and their families. In addition to teaching through InsightLA, she has taught mindfulness at an outreach center for young adults with mental health issues and in juvenile hall. Elizabeth continues to engage in opportunities to create systems change, as well as to offer teachings to individuals and groups at InsightLA.
Visit Elizabeth's Teacher Site at inside.insightla.org/elizabeth.
Eric McCullum first discovered meditation in the early 1990’s. In 2005 he began practicing in the Vipassana tradition with Trudy Goodman and Insight LA. Eric is currently a member of Insight LA’s teacher development group. Eric co-leads a young men’s sitting group in Santa Monica as well as a sitting group in Hermosa Beach. One of his main interests lies in fostering meditation practices that are relevant to people with active, engaged lifestyles in the 21st Century. “Off the cushion” Eric places a strong emphasis on service work. From 1999-2001 he served as a United States Peace Corps Volunteer in the country of Vanuatu. He holds an MA in Counseling Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute and has been a bereavement counselor and hospice bed side volunteer for over 10 years. Eric currently is principal of a structural engineering firm in the South Bay of Los Angeles, where he lives with his wife and 2 children.
Lisa Kring is a licensed clinical social worker, with experience in child and family therapy and family court mediation. Through her studies with Dan Siegel, M.D., she began practicing mindfulness with the Mindful Awareness Research Center over six years ago, and later began the MBSR certification process with Bob Stahl and Jon Kabat-Zinn. She also leads ongoing mindfulness groups with cancer patients at the Simms/Mann Center for Integrative Oncology at UCLA. Lisa recognizes Trudy Goodman and Christiane Wolf as guiding teachers and mentors, and is deeply grateful to be a part of the InsightLA community.
Visit Lisa's Teacher Site at inside.insightla.org/lisa.
Paloma Cain has been studying and practicing meditation since 1997. Her work is informed by her studies in Insight Meditation, Tibetan Buddhism, clinical and depth psychology, and the visual arts. Her journey has included serving as the Director of Tara Mandala Retreat Center, sitting a three-month retreat with Alan Wallace as part of the Shamatha Project, and interning as a hospital chaplain in Los Angeles. Paloma has been teaching at InsightLA since 2009, where she currently teaches classes in meditation, MBSR and Mindful Parenting. She also brings Mindfulness practice to staff at Los Angeles area VA Hospitals. Parenting and family life are among her current inspirations.
Alisa Dennis, Ph.D. has had a meditation practice for 15 years. She first discovered meditation through her study of metaphysics and ancient Christian mystical traditions. Alisa later practiced within the S.N. Goenka tradition of Vipassana, attending retreats over several years. She studied neuroscience research related to mindfulness and practiced mindfulness through the Mindful Awareness Research Center (MARC) at UCLA with Diana Winston and Susan Kaiser Greenland in 2008. Alisa practiced within the Zen Soto tradition and completed a five-week residential retreat at Yokoji Zen Mountain Center under the guidance of Abbott Tenshin Fletcher. Alisa cherishes the healing power of mindfulness to create a sense of ease and well-being and to re-connect us to our own natural capacity to meet the moments of our lives with kindness, openness, and flexibility. As a licensed clinical psychologist in private practice in the Los Angeles area, Alisa works with adults, children, families, and couples. She trained with Jerome Front, LMFT, for two years, during which she learned how to utilize mindfulness, MBSR techniques, and contemplative practices in psychotherapy, while also deepening her own meditation practice. In addition to utilizing mindfulness-based therapy in her psychotherapy practice, Alisa also incorporates the creative arts, including visual art, poetry, psychodrama, and music and sound. In 2010, Alisa completed a yearlong training at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco, where she received certification as a sound, voice, and music-healing practitioner.
Ali Hedayat's interest in philosophy since childhood has led him to pursue various contemplative paths. He has been practicing Vipassana Meditation since 2003 and has led mindfulness sitting groups in various educational settings as well as the LMU sitting group. Currently, he runs the People of Color Sangha for InsightLA and is in the InsightLA Teacher Development Program. Ali has sat long-term meditation retreats and workshops with different teachers and has completed the facilitator training program of InsightLA. Professionally, Ali was an Industrial Engineer before earning his second Masters degree. He then became a credentialed School Counselor and has been working with youth in Los Angeles since 1998.
Ali co-leads the People of Color Sitting Group.
Ava Louise Stanton
Ava Louise Stanton is a long-time Zen student, beginning with 10 years of study as a founding member and resident of the Providence Zen Center with Zen Master Seung Sahn. She and Trudy Goodman practiced together in the 1970s as students of Zen Master Seung Sahn. Currently, Ava studies with Tony Patchell (Russian River Zen Center, Sonoma County, CA) a teacher in the Suzuki Roshi lineage. Tony recognized Ava as a Zen teacher through the ceremony of Lay Entrustment in 2015. Ava is a psychotherapist in private practice in Santa Monica, CA, working with meditation students and other adults.
Cayce Howe has 25 years of meditation experience in a variety of traditions but he feels the strongest ties with the Kagyu lineage of Tibetan Buddhism. His passion for meditation has led him to live and work at mediation retreat centers for nearly 6 years. He completed a one-year meditation retreat in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition in 2008. After experiencing a powerful lesson in compassion and the power of mindfulness, in the form of caregiving for a loved one in chronic pain for over 7 years, he decided to devote himself to help others cope with suffering using meditation.
Diana Gould has been a meditator for over 35 years, practicing Insight meditation for 20. She has been a facilitator for the Vipassana Support Institute, and has taught meditation at the Learning Curve at the Gay and Lesbian Center. She is a graduate of the Community Dharma Leader program at Spirit Rock, and the Teacher Training program with Trudy Goodman at Insight LA. As a television writer and producer, her credits include pilots, episodes, movies and miniseries for network and cable.
Visit Diana's Teacher Site at www.inside.insightla.org/diana.
Glenn began practicing meditation in the mid 1990’s, and in 2007 after meeting Trudy Goodman and Shinzen Young, Glenn was inspired to become an active member of InsightLA and began regularly attending residential retreats with Shinzen, Zen master Joshu Sasaki Roshi, and Anam Thubten Rinpoche. With deep appreciation of what he has discovered through his practice, Glenn hopes to inspire others to explore and experience what the practice of meditation has to offer.
Gulwinder “Gullu” Singh has enjoyed a successful 20+ year career as a commercial real estate attorney, living in a world of stressful environments and often insane mindsets. Thankfully, exposed to meditation as a child, he found his own practice in 1993. In 2006, Gullu began deepening his meditation practice in the Vipassana (Insight) tradition of mindfulness, concentration and heart practices which aim to incline the mind and heart to default states of joy, kindness, empathy and balance. Gullu has a deep inspiration to share meditation with all who are interested as an antidote to stress, a way to cope more effectively with the challenges and demands of life and discovering our own innate resources for learning, growing, healing, and thriving.
Gullu teaches Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and administrates Trudy Goodman's Deepening Your Practice program.
Karen K. Redding
Karen facilitates a monthly Sitting Group as an 'out-post' of InsightLA at the OM Studio in Laguna Beach. She has over a decade of experience as a dedicated practitioner in Insight meditation under the guidance of Trudy Goodman, the founding teacher at InsightLA. Currently, she is in the Dedicated Practitioner's Program at Spirit Rock and has recently completed a Facilitator's Training Program at InsightLA. For over 25 years, Karen has been in private practice as a clinical social worker and psychoanalyst. She brings an integrated approach as she works to lessen human suffering in both her practice of psychotherapy and mindfulness-based meditation. She offers mindfulness-based meditation classes for beginners and more experienced practitioners in Laguna Beach where she lives and works.
Karen leads the Orange County Laguna Beach monthly sitting group.
Mark Koberg has completed the first MBSR (Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction) teacher training practicum through InsightLA and the University of Mass' Center for Mindfulness. Mark is also part of the InsightLA teacher development group and is currently participating in InsightLA’s facilitator training program. He has a dedicated daily practice, attends retreats at Spirit Rock, has blogged for The Huffington Post, and has appeared on national television talking about his experience with mindfulness. Mark has also produced a series of mindfulness training videos for InsightLA and the Greater Los Angeles Veterans Administration that are being used nationally to train clinicians and veterans in mindfulness meditation. In addition, Mark is an adjunct lecturer at USC in the School of Cinematic Arts, Media Arts + Practice division where he teaches digital media. Mark’s television career spans producing, developing, and launching national shows and digital content for Telepictures, King World, Tribune, ABC Daytime, 20th Television (FOX), Debmar Mercury, ITV, Harpo Productions and Lifetime TV.
Mark co-leads the Dharma Alliance LGTBQ Sitting Group.
Mark has been a meditator for 25 years. He has practiced in both the Tibetan (Kagyu) and Insight traditions, and is deeply committed to sharing the power of mindfulness. Mark is currently earning his doctorate in clinical psychology, and enjoys integrating Buddhist and Western psychological perspectives.
Michael Stroud is certified to teach Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) by UCSD Medical School, and has trained with cognitive psychologist and MBCT co-creator Zindel Segal. Michael teaches mindfulness at InsightLA, Torrance Hospital and Alternatives, a Beverly Hills addiction clinic. Michael completed InsightLA's professional practicum in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, trained with MBSR creator Jon Kabat-Zinn and completed the University of Washington training to teach Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention for addiction. Michael has meditated since the 1970s and has trained in TM, Zen, Ch'an and Jewish meditation. He has studied with Trudy Goodman, founder and guiding teacher at InsightLA, since 2006. Previously an entrepreneur and a journalist, Michael is currently seeing patients as a Marriage and Family Therapy Intern under the supervision of Ellen Ledley, a Santa Monica therapist in private practice.
Michael teaches Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy and mindfulness-based programs at InsightLA.
Nicholas Bruss is a licensed psychotherapist, has practiced Vipassana meditation intensively in the U.S., Burma and Thailand and is a graduate of Spirit Rock's Dedicated Practitioners' Program. He's a perennial student of wisdom and compassion practices and has been cross-trained in multiple arenas with compassion and mindfulness at their core such as Internal Family Systems psychotherapy, somatic-based trauma resiliency, nonviolent communication and end of life presence. He's been trained to teach Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) by founding teachers Kristin Neff and Chris Germer, and also teaches the heavily researched Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program. Through the Center for Compassion, Altruism Research and Education (CCARE) at Stanford University School of Medicine, he is a certified teacher of Compassion Cultivation Training (CCT), and is a Certified Mindfulness Facilitator by UCLA's Mindful Awareness Research Center at the Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior. Nicholas has a keen interest in offering awareness and kindness practices and has found that they are transformative in BIG and small ways.
Tere came from Mexico City 14 years ago with her three young children and late husband. She began her practice in Mexico, where she studied Tibetan Buddhism and practiced meditation. Here in Los Angeles, she became Trudy Goodman’s student, which complemented her Catholic upbringing and her husband´s Jewish heritage and broadened her capacity for understanding and compassion for others. Inspired to help, she left behind both her MBA and her bachelor degree in geography to devote herself to her family, her personal growth, and the study and practice of mindfulness. She became a dedicated practitioner at InsightLA before joining the teacher development program. Tere graduated from Spirit Rock's Community Dharma Leadership program as well as the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Practicum, and other diverse mindfulness programs, including completing The Fearless Compassionate Care Training and becoming certified as a Cultivating Emotional Balance Teacher. Her self-inquiry search through psychoanalysis has strengthen her mindfulness journey as well as her creativity as a visual artist. Her main interest is to bring mindfulness to Spanish speaking communities throughout the Los Angeles area. She is the president of a large company in Mexico City, where she is incorporating mindfulness and conscious business practices with the firm belief that it will benefit many people’s lives and could start changing the way business are led in Mexico.
Wendy N. Block
Wendy N. Block is a licensed therapist treating individuals and families for the past 30 years. She began practicing meditation at age 18, studying different traditions, including Buddhist, Hindu, and Advaita path with various teachers. She has been practicing Vipassana meditation for the past 11 years, and helped organize meditation sits in Long Beach for the past 7 years. She has taught Beginner’s meditation classes and Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy. She is part of the Dedicated Practioner’s Program at both InsightLA and Spirit Rock Meditation Center. She currently works as a therapist integrating mindfulness and psychotherapy.
Wendy teaches Buddha's Path at InsightLA.
Wendy Schmelzer has been teaching meditation in health and healing environments since 2006. A longtime meditator, she is a graduate of InsightLA’s first MBSR class, as well as its initial MBSR teacher training course. This year, she completed the inaugural Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) Teacher Training program under the guidance of MSC’s founding teachers, Drs. Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer.
Wendy is a licensed clinical social worker and psychotherapist specializing in aging and end of life concerns. In addition to having a private practice, she is also an instructor at the Greater Los Angeles VA where she teaches mindfulness meditation and compassion practices to staff and family caregivers as part of InsightLA’s VA CALM team. And every other Wednesday morning, Wendy leads InsightLA’s Mindful Aging Sitting Group. In an earlier professional life, she was an award-winning Science Correspondent for NPR, specializing in aging and health-related issues.
InsightLA Special Faculty
Amy Spies is a longtime writer and teacher in film, television, and new media. She’s written documentaries, drama, comedy, as well as blogging for the Huffington Post and Los Angeles Review of Books. Amy is interested in writing about human rights and the resilience of individuals globally. She serves on diversity, human rights committees and as a writing awards judge for PEN International Literary Association and the Writers Guild. Amy studied under Trudy Goodman in Los Angeles and is a graduate of the InsightLA MBSR Teacher Training Practicum. Amy has attended mindfulness and psychology conferences, including at Harvard Medical School led by Thich Nhat Hanh. Amy graduated from Harvard University, where she studied psychology, literature, and film.
Amy teaches The Mindful Writer's Journey class and leads Mindful Writer's Group - Using Mindfulness to Deepen Our Craft and Connect With Our Muse.
Beth Mulligan is a Certified Physician Assistant who has practiced medicine since graduation from Duke University in 1982. She also received advanced training in Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction and been teaching at Medical Centers and Universities for nine years, she is currently the lead Mindfulness Instructor at the Susan Samueli Center for Integrative Medicine. Through her organization Mindful-Way Stress Reduction, she leads residential Mindfulness retreats, offers Mindfulness Workshops for non-profit organizations, schools and Juvenile Detention centers. She trains physicians, nurses and therapists in mindfulness and stress reduction, and lectures widely on the subject of Stress Physiology and Mind-Body medicine.
Beth has been at student of Zen with Charles Tenshin Fletcher at Yokiji Zen Mountain Center for many years, she regularly attends retreats and has lived residentially at Yokoji.. She also has a background in Martial Arts and is a certified Hatha Yoga Instructor.
The Mindfulness Curriculum she teaches had become the perfect vehicle to combine her knowledge and experience of Western medicine with her passion for the benefits of Mindfulness Practices which are of great interest to her personally and professionally. Her long practice of medicine has given birth to a desire to help people heal their relationship with their bodies, food and weight through the Mindful Eating for Healthy Living Program she developed.
Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D.
Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D., is the author of "The Now Effect: How this Moment Can Change the Rest of Your Life" and co-author of "A Mindfulness‑Based Stress Reduction Workbook." His is also author of the the "Mindful Solutions" audio series and the Mindfulness at Work™ program that is currently being taught in many multinational corporations. He is the founder of the "Mindfulness and Psychotherapy" column on Psychcentral.com and a frequent contributor on the Huffington Post and Mentalhelp.net. He has also given workshops, radio interviews, and lectures in multiple settings on the therapeutic benefits of mindfulness including the Psychotherapy Networker, FACES conference, the Mindfulness and Psychotherapy conference at UCLA headlining Thich Nhat Hanh, Jack Kornfield, Dan Siegel, and Trudy Goodman, among others. He lives in Santa Monica, CA, and has a private practice in West Los Angeles.
Stefanie Goldstein, Ph.D.
Stefanie Goldstein, PhD is a licensed clinical psychologist who began her meditation and mindfulness practice at Wat Suan Mokkh, an International Dharma Hermitage, in Thailand over 13 years ago. Since that time she has been committed to her own personal practice of meditation and yoga. Stefanie is in Private Practice in West LA and works with Adults, Adolescents, Couples and Families and is committed to integrating Mindfulness and Psychotherapy. She became an MBSR teacher under the direction of Trudy Goodman and Christiane Wolf in 2011. She is also the co-creator and teacher of the CALM – Connecting Adolescents to Learning Mindfulness program at InsightLA.