Lodro Rinzler – Founder
Lodro brings to the institute over a decade of non-profit leadership training and coaching experience. He is a best-selling author of The Buddha Walks into a Bar... the award-winning Walk Like a Buddha and the new book The Buddha Walks into the Office: A Guide to Livelihood for a New Generation. He is a teacher in the Shambhala Buddhist lineage and his work has appeared in Marie Claire, Bloomberg BusinessWeek and Entrepreneur Magazine.
Upon graduating from Wesleyan University Lodro was appointed the Executive Director of the Shambhala Center of Boston, an organization that teaches meditation in order to create social change through inner change. He went on to serve as the international organization’s Development Director, replicating the success he had in Boston in over one hundred Shambhala Centers around the world. He stepped back from that work to focus on his writing and served as a key figure in the state of Ohio for the Obama campaign after Alex’s passing, then got to work founding the institute in January 2013.
Sarah Gokhale – Operations Coordinator
Sarah Gokhale is a graduate student, tutor, and practitioner based in NYC. She is interested in theater and film, and the intersection of Buddhist practice and Western philosophy. She understands that this world is not short of young people seeking to create change, and believes that the Institute for Compassionate Leadership is the perfect venue for them to begin their journey towards creating social change.
Our Board of Directors is made up of compassionate leaders from a wide cross-section of the world.
Suz was most recently the Director of the Harvey Najim Center for Business Innovation and Social Responsibility at St Mary's University in San Antonio, and also taught as a Visiting Professor of Innovation at the Bill Greehey School of Business. She recently helped to launch the design Garage at Google where she taught innovation, trained facilitators, led personal development activities, and designed learning programs. Suz has a boutique marketing, brandingdesign and learning business that she's run since 1997.
Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche
Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche is the head of Shambhala, a global network of meditation and retreat centers grounded in the inherent goodness of humanity. The Sakyong, literally translated as “earth protector,” is a dharma king and lineage holder of the Shambhala lineage, guiding thousands of students around the world in the path of meditation. With a unique blend of Eastern and Western perspectives, he teaches meditation and social transformation while also guiding a number of humanitarian projects.
Born in Bodhgaya, India, in 1962, the Sakyong is the eldest son of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. As a young man, the Sakyong studied with the great Tibetan masters: His Holiness Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche and His Holiness Penor Rinpoche. He is married to Khandro Tseyang Palmo and has two children.
In 2006 the Sakyong initiated the Compassionate Leadership conference and dialogues by presenting His Holiness Dalai Lama with the Living Peace Award; awarded to living examples of people who benefit humanity. He has written many books including the national bestseller Turning the Mind into an Ally, award winning Ruling Your World, and Running with the Mind of Meditation. He is also an avid poet, artist, and athlete. The Sakyong’s new book, The Shambhala Principle, was released on May 7th, 2013. For more information, please visit www.sakyong.com
Sharon Salzberg has been a student of Buddhism since 1971 and leading mindfulness meditation retreats worldwide since 1974. In 1976 she co-founded the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) in Barre, Massachusetts, which is now one of the most renowned and active meditation centers in the Western world. Her latest book is the New York Times best-seller Real Happiness. She is also the author of a half dozen other books including Lovingkindess: The Revolutionary Art of Happiness.
In addition, Sharon has emerged as a featured speaker, panelist and meditation teacher at cutting edge events, such as the Mind and Life Institute’s conferences with His Holiness the Dalai Lama; the State of the World Forum; the Peacemakers Conference and Jerry Brown's inauguration as mayor of Oakland. She has delivered keynotes at Tricycle’s Buddhism in America event, Yoga Journal, Kripalu and Omega conferences, the Gethsemani encounter, and at Washington National Cathedral’s Sacred Circles women’s interfaith conference in DC.
Dev runs Catalog an agency which provides recruiting services for companies that make money and do good. For the last ten years, Dev has been at the center of a progressive new generation that is rebuilding, redesigning and rethinking the ways that we do good and make money. He is the founder of DreamNow, a charitable organization which has helped young people organize and start community projects. Over the last ten years, DreamNow has reached over fifty thousand people and raised over three million dollars. His writing and work have been featured in dozens of media outlets including Fast Company, Paper Magazine, MSNBC, CBS and The Globe and Mail. He is the co-author of Making Good: Finding Meaning, Money & Community in a Changing World (Rodale/Penguin 2012).
Aaron Slavutin graduated with honors from Wesleyan University in 2005 where he majored in the College of Social Studies. Following graduation, he moved to China where he was a Foreign Expert at Tianjin Normal University and was awarded the Presidential Teaching Prize. He returned to the U.S. in 2007 to attend New York University School of Law. While at NYU, he was a summer intern at the Tianjin Arbitration Commission, worked as a summer associate at Paul Hastings LLP in New York, and was a Notes Editor for the NYU Journal of International Law and Politics.
After receiving his JD in 2010, Aaron served as the Robert L. Bernstein Fellow of International Human Rights at Human Rights In China -- an NGO located in New York City. Since completing his fellowship at HRIC in August 2011, he has been clerking for the Hon. Burton R. Lifland of the Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York. Aaron is a native New Yorker and member of the New York State Bar.
Buffy Wicks served as the National Director of Operation Vote for the Obama for America campaign – a key leadership role in the Executive Management Team of President Obama’s reelection campaign. As head of Operation Vote, Buffy spearheaded the campaign’s strategy to communicate with and mobilize core demographic voters. Prior to this role she served as the Deputy Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement for President Obama. In this capacity, she served as the White House liaison for key stakeholders throughout the country in an effort to pass the President’s legislative priorities such as health reform and financial regulation.
Buffy was one of the first people hired by the Obama for America 2008 campaign and served in a variety of roles, including California Field Director and Missouri State Director. She also helped to develop the national grassroots field strategy for the Obama campaign, considered a model of effective organizing.
Larry is currently Executive Vice President, EPG Incorporated. Founded in 1984, EPG Inc. is a strategic investment and interest rate risk business advisory firm headquartered in Wellesley MA. Acting as a partner to community-based financial institutions, EPG works with clients ranging in asset size from $150 million to several billion, integrating management, balance sheet analytics, regulatory compliance and strategic counsel. Larry previously served as Principal and Portfolio Manager for Scudder, Stevens & Clark, where he directed investments of $4.5 billion in Global and International bond assets. In this capacity he performed as principal spokesperson for Scudder’s style and characteristics to clients. Prior to Scudder, Mr. Teitelbaum managed $9 billion in Global Bond Funds as a Senior Portfolio manager for Merrill Lynch Asset Management. Prior to Merrill, Mr. Teitelbaum was a Worldwide Cash and Foreign Exchange manager of Storagetek in Louisville, CO. Mr. Teitelbaum received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mathematics from Tufts University and his MBA in Finance from the University of Colorado Graduate School of Business. Larry has been practicing meditation since 1974 and is a student of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. Larry lives in Lexington, Massachusetts with his wife Lisa Berland and has four grown children.
Lisa Zigarmi is a seasoned leadership consultant and coach. She partners with Fortune 500 companies to build the leadership capacity of their staff and is passionate about creating saner, more effective, and more meaning-driven organizations. As a Director of Solutions for the Ken Blanchard Companies®, she codesigns and implements learning curriculums and development experiences that drive business outcomes. Lisa is also the coauthor of #Positivity at Work—a book that highlights the best practices for enabling positivity within individuals and companies.