Alex has practiced meditation for more than 15 years, including many months of intensive retreat practice, and has studied in the Theravada, Tibetan and Zen schools of Buddhism. Alex completed Spirit Rock's Community Dharma Leader program in 2012 and graduated from the SRMC/IMS/IRC four-year teacher training in 2016 under the guidance of his mentors Joseph Goldstein and Guy Armstrong. He has taught with Jack Kornfield, Diana Winston, Gil Fronsdal and other senior teachers. He now leads residential retreats across the country.
In his role as assistant professor and mindfulness program lead at the University of Minnesota's Earl E. Bakken Center for Spirituality & Healing, he teaches undergraduate and graduate mindfulness courses, assists with mindfulness research and helps support mindfulness programming in a variety of non-academic settings. Alex is also a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner, trained Co-Active coach, certified Myers-Briggs practitioner and founding member of the Mindfulness for Students network. Other areas of personal passion include social justice, embodiment, behavior change and technology for wellbeing.
Jean is a clinical social worker who teaches mindfulness in a variety of settings. She has been a consultant to several local organizations on mindfulness and stress reduction as well as the use of mindfulness as an adjunct to psychotherapy. She has also designed and facilitated mind/body groups for persons suffering from symptoms of anxiety and depression as part of her private psychotherapy practice. Before becoming a social worker, Jean worked for many years in higher education administration. Her most recent position in this capacity was Vice President for Information Services and Technology at the University of St. Thomas where she was responsible for the libraries and information technology services.
Benjamin is a dedicated meditation practitioner and practice leader. He has a passion for studying classical Buddhism and integrating it with a contemporary, urban lifestyle. His current practice emphasis is Satipaṭṭhāna meditation and embedding it in daily life. He has been trained to lead secular mindfulness offerings through the University of Minnesota and has a Certificate in Buddhist Chaplaincy from United Theological Seminary. He was also a member in Spirit Rock Meditation Center’s latest Community Dharma Leader Training Program.
Professionally, Ben is a serial entrepreneur, currently focused on his role as a founding partner and chief innovation officer of the startup studio Cloudburst, a Minneapolis-based benefit corporation.
Alex is a meditation practitioner, practice leader, and community organizer who is dedicated to engaged Buddhism which applies the dharma in the service of positive social change. Alex's practice is grounded in early Buddhist teachings, especially the Satipaṭṭhāna Sutta. He has been trained by the University of Minnesota to lead secular mindfulness trainings, was a member of Spirit Rock's Community Dharma Leader Training Program (cohort six), and has spent over 100 days in silent meditation retreat. Alex leads the Social Impact team at Ovative Group, a marketing agency in Minneapolis, and has managed or volunteered with multiple electoral and legislative campaigns at the city, state, and national level.
Femi is a medical student at the University of Minnesota, where his intention is to serve as a bridge between Eastern and Western healing modalities for both mind and body. He completed his MSc. in Physiology, Biophysics and Complementary and Alternative Medicine from Georgetown University, and his BS in Elementary Education from Messiah College. Femi is also a yoga teacher (RYT 200-hr), certified massage therapist, Shaolin Kung Fu black belt, and former Division 1 athlete. He is particularly interested in how an embodied yoga & dharma practice can be utilized to meet the challenging needs and deep wounds of our modern society.
Alvina is currently the Quality Improvement Coordinator at the University of Minnesota Physicians and is the former Center Coordinator for the Women’s Health Integrative Research Center at St. Catherine’s University, where she conducted workshops on stress reduction, mindfulness, and mind-body health research to community members of all ages. She holds a Ph.D. in Cognitive and Biological Psychology and a certificate in Complementary Therapies and Integrative Healing Practices from the University of Minnesota. In addition to teaching courses on Mind-Body psychology, Alvina is also a trained yoga teacher and musician.