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Featured Speakers

Brenna Artinger

Brenna Artinger is an independent researcher whose work focuses on exclusion and extremism. They hold an MPhil in Buddhist Studies from the University of Oxford and are the President of the Alliance for Bhikkhunis.

Larry Ward

Larry is a senior teacher in Buddhist Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh’s Plum Village tradition. He brings twenty five years of international experience in organizational change and local community renewal to his work as director of the Lotus Institute and as an advisor to the Executive Mind Leadership Institute at the Drucker School of Management. He holds a PhD in Religious Studies with an emphasis on Buddhism and the neuroscience of meditation. Larry is a knowledgeable, charismatic and inspirational teacher, offering insights with personal stories and resounding clarity that express his dharma name, “True Great Sound.”

Bhikkhu Bodhi

Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi is an American Buddhist monk from New York City. He obtained a BA in philosophy from Brooklyn College (1966) and a PhD in philosophy from Claremont Graduate School (1972). After completing his university studies he traveled to Sri Lanka, where he received novice ordination in 1972 and full ordination in 1973. For many years he was the president and editor of the Buddhist Publication Society in Sri Lanka. He has been living at Chuang Yen Monastery since 2006. In 2008, together with several of his students, Ven. Bodhi founded Buddhist Global Relief, a non-profit supporting hunger relief, sustainable agriculture, and education in countries suffering from chronic poverty and malnutrition. In May 2013 was elected president of BAUS.

Sharon Salzberg

Sharon Salzberg is a meditation pioneer and industry leader, a world-renowned teacher, and New York Times bestselling author. As one of the first to bring meditation and mindfulness into mainstream American culture over 45 years ago, her relatable, demystifying approach has inspired generations of meditation teachers and wellness influencers. Sharon is co-founder of The Insight Meditation Society in Barre, MA, and the author of eleven books, including the New York Times bestseller, Real Happiness, now in its second edition, her seminal work, Lovingkindness, and her newest book, Real Change: Mindfulness To Heal Ourselves and the World, released in September of 2020 from Flatiron Books. Sharon’s secular, modern approach to Buddhist teachings is sought after at schools, conferences, and retreat centers worldwide. Her podcast, The Metta Hour, has amassed over 3 million downloads and features interviews with the top leaders and thinkers of the mindfulness movement and beyond. Sharon’s writing can be found on Medium, On Being, the Maria Shriver blog, and Huffington Post. Learn more at

Ann Gleig

Ann Gleig is an associate professor of Religion and Cultural Studies at the University of Central Florida. She is author of American Dharma: Buddhism Beyond Modernity (Yale University Press, 2019). More info about Ann can be found here.

Rebecca Li

Rebecca Li, PhD, is a teacher of Chan Buddhism in the lineage of Chan Master Sheng Yen. She is the founder and guiding teacher of Chan Dharma Community, a Chan Buddhist practice and study community, and the author of Allow Joy into Our Hearts: Chan Practice in Uncertain Times. She leads Chan retreats, teaches meditation and Dharma classes, and gives public lectures in North America and the U.K.. Her current book project is on the Chan practice of Silent Illumination. Dr. Li is a sociology professor and lives with her husband in New Jersey. Her talks, guided meditation, and calendar of events can be found at

Ven. Dr. Pannavati

Ven. Dr. Pannavati, a former Christian pastor, is co-founder and co-Abbot of Embracing-Simplicity Hermitage and meditation center; Co-Director of Heartwood Refuge and President of the Treasure Human Life Foundation. A black, female Buddhist monk ordained in the Theravada, Chan, and Mahayana traditions with Vajrayana empowerments and transmission from Roshi Bernie Glassman of Zen Peacemakers, she is both contemplative and empowered for compassionate service. Ven. Dr. Pannavati is also a current disciple of Zhaxi Zhouma Rimpoche.

Dawa Tarchin Phillips

Lama Dawa Tarchin Phillips is an American Vajrayana teacher, spiritual leader, researcher, author, social entrepreneur and educator. He is the founder/CEO of Empowerment Holdings, an international mindful leadership and coaching company, co-founder of the Mindful Leadership Online Training Conference, and founder of The Mindful Leadership Tribe, an online community of mindful leaders. He completed two 3-year meditation retreats and is an experienced Dharma and meditation teacher, who leads retreats in the U.S. and Europe. More info here

Myokei Caine-Barrett Shonin

Myokei Caine-Barrett is the first woman of African-Japanese descent, and the only Western woman, to be ordained as a priest in the Nichiren Order. She is the resident priest and guiding teacher for the Myoken-ji Temple, home of the Nichiren Buddhist Sangha of Texas. Committed to issues of social justice and healing, Myokei has worked with incarcerated individuals in the Texas Prison System for the past 15 years, and has been an active member of The Center for Healing Racism, examining the realities of racism and how it affects people of color as well as the dominant group in society. More info here

Vimalasara Mason-John

Dr. Valerie (Vimalasara) Mason-John, (hon.doc) M.A. is a public speaker and master trainer in the field of conflict transformation, leadership and mindfulness. They was featured at TEDxRenfrewCollingwood where she gave a talk titled, We are what we think, which outlined a course of action we can take to work on the global epidemic of bullying. They are the award-winning author of 10 books, and the co-author and co-founder of Eight Step Recovery: Using The Buddha’s Teaching to Overcome Addiction. Since its publication, it has won the Best USA Book Award 2014 and Best International Book Award 2015 in the self motivational and self help category. Eight Step Recovery offers an alternative to the 12 step program for addiction. Eight Step meetings are now taking place in the UK, USA, Canada, Mexico, India and Finland. They are a senior teacher in the Triratna Buddhist Community. More info here

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