After dabbling in meditation and Eastern religions for years, Brian began a serious practice in 1984. In 1998, he moved full-time to a retreat center in New York’s Hudson Valley and began intensive practice in the Theravada tradition. Following the instructions of his teachers to pass on what he has learned and experienced, he left the retreat center in 2006 and moved to Philadelphia. He has been teaching at Springboard since.
Dr. Beth Adelson teaches both Theravadan and Tibetan forms of Buddhist meditation. She believes that these practices were designed to make people happy and effective in everyday life. Her classes are structured to lead to that result. Beth Adelson was trained as a dancer at the Alvin Ailey and Martha Graham studios in NYC, in conjunction with this work, she first sat with Suzuki Roshi in 1970 and began her yoga practice at the age of 17. She was then trained as a cognitive scientist at Harvard University; her subsequent research on the effects of meditation was endorsed by the Dalai Lama (see below). Her meditation teachers include: Salzburg, Boorstein and Goldstein; Tsultrim Allione and Alan Wallace; and Roshis Shunryu Suzuki, Joan Halifax and Jan Chozen Bayes. She spent seven years in Theravadan Buddhist retreat. Dr. Adelson is a Past Program Director at the National Science Foundation and Professor Emeritus at Rutgers. Her current daily meditation practice focuses on Vipassana, Jhana and the Four Immeasurables: kindness, compassion, empathetic joy and equanimity. Her daily yoga practice integrates meditative contentment of heart and mind into the physical poses.
Beth is the founder of the 24th St. sangha in Philadelphia and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 215.219.5296 for group or private lessons.
Bob Chapra has been a member of the Springboard Studio Sangha since 2008. He also studied with Sharon Salzberg in New York City.
Bob has been a student of The Feldenkrais Method since 1973 and was authorized to teach by Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais in 1977. Bob also studied Sensory Awareness with Charlotte Selver and Charles Brooks and was authorized to teach in the tradition of Elsa Gindler by Gindler’s co-teacher, Carola Speads. Bob has noticed a deep common ground between vipassana meditation and these somatic practices and explores this intersection in his teaching.
I have been a “seeker” all my adult life and explored several different spiritual paths before being lucky enough to come to Vipassana Buddhism via Mindfulness Meditation. I became committed to this work and in 2006 trained at the Jefferson-Myrna Brind Center for Integrative Medicine to become qualified to teach the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction course as developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn. I now offer regular introductory courses in mindfulness meditation and have a couple of on-going study groups. As a psychotherapist, mindfulness has had a profound impact on my therapy practice. I love to work with those who seek to integrate mindfulness practice into their every day lives, finding ways to reduce suffering using interventions based on Buddhist teachings. My personal practice includes regular sitting meditation, a couple of retreats a year, and the good fortune to study with a teacher for whom I have deep love and respect.
Pamela Freeman has participated in the Community Dharma Leadership Program at Spirit Rock in California and most recently is a student in their Dedicated Practitioner Program. Sara Lomax-Reese has been a leader in the African American community in promoting health and wellness through her radio program HealthQuest Live on WURD and HealthQuest Magazine. She currently leads the People of Color Meditation Group at Springboard.
Cameron McMillan’s practice has included study with monastic teachers in the Thai Forest tradition, the Sri Lankan tradition, and Burmese tradition, and most recently with Ajahn Sucitto. She started meditation through yoga when she was 16 years old and began more dedicated study and practice 23 years ago. Qi Gong and T’ai Chi are part of her continuing body meditation practices. She has been leading and teaching at Springboard since 2006. Originally from Indiana, Cameron is a retired Professor of Fine Arts with a degree from Yale University. She lives with her cartoonist husband, Scott Spencer, and their two sweet cats, Buzz and Nepa, in their garden home in Philly.
Michelle Stortz, C-IAYT, ERYT500, MFA, has been practicing mindfulness meditation since 2001. She has studied in the Theravadan Buddhist tradition and trained in the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction curriculum. She is a certified yoga therapist specializing in yoga for cancer and chronic illness and teaches in numerous medical settings throughout the Philadelphia area. She brings an eclectic approach to her classes that is informed by her studies in Somatics, contemporary movement practices, yoga nidra and Reiki. www.MichelleStortz.com
Guest / Visiting Teachers
Caroline founded Springboard Studio and initiated the current regular meditation practice schedule at the studio 10 years ago this January 2016 with her friend in the Dharma Brian Arnell. Caroline began her Buddhiststudies at the Tibetan Buddhist Learning Center in Washington, New Jersey in the early 90s. Her teachers there included a number of Tibetan Lamas, and American Buddhist teachers Robert Thurman, Jeffrey Hopkins, Anne Klein, Donald Lopez, Joshua Cutler and the psychologist Daniel Brown.
Caroline received professional training to teach the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) curriculum program between 2000-2004 at the Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center with Jon Kabat-Zinn, Saki Santorelli, Florence Meleo-Meyer and Melissa Blacker, regularly attending retreats with a number of teachers at IMS and the Forest Refuge in Barre, Mass. Caroline began studying in the Zen tradition in the Fall of 2013 after a retreat at the Upaya Zen Center in Santa Fe. She is currently focused on studying Dogen’s Genjokoan under the guidance of her teacher Roshi Melissa Myozen Blacker, the Abbot of the Worcester Zen Center in Massachusetts. Caroline is a Board-certified Art Therapist and Licensed Professional Counselor at Springboard Studio and the Abramson Cancer Center at Pennsylvania Hospital.
Michael has been a member of Springboard Sangha since 2013. He began teaching at the invitation of senior teacher, Brian Arnall, in 2016. Once a resident of Philadelphia, he now lives in Italy with his partner Monica. Michael’s meditation practice synthesizes the Dhammā with over 20 years of musical explorations through a practice called Deep Listening®. Michael is a certified Deep Listening teacher having studied in the linage of composer Pauline Oliveros. He is currently teaches at the Center for Deep Listening at Rennsalear Polytechnic Institute, and with his somatic listening workshops around the world called Listening Bodies. As a sound therapist Michael has studied at the Music for Healing and Transition Program which trains musicians for playing improvised music at the bedside of the sick and dying. As a composer he has released over ten albums on labels such a Healing Sound Propagandist, Sacred Sea Records, Pregnant Void, and on his own Sound of Listening platform. Michael also works as a composer for Wavepaths, a platform providing music experiences for and as psychedelic therapy. He works as the webmaster for Science and Nonduality. You can find out more about his practice at “Sound Sangha” where the group explores the practice of Sonic Mindfulness. Sound Sangha meets Fridays at 12pm ET. Find out more at http://soundoflistening.com/sangha
Oren Jay Sofer
Integrating the tools and insights of Buddhist meditation, Somatics and Nonviolent Communication (NVC), Oren brings a unique and pragmatic perspective to living and speaking mindfully. His teaching combines formal training and study with everyday experience working in the world.
He leads classes, workshops, and retreats nationally in mindfulness, Dharma practice, and interpersonal communication. As part of his commitment to support others to live the values of a spiritual path, Oren also works with individuals in on-going, personal Dharma Mentoring relationships.
Josh Korda has been the dharma teacher at the New York and Brooklyn Dharmapunx meetings since 2005, and is a regular visiting teacher at Against the Stream Buddhist community in Los Angeles. He has a large buddhist mentoring private practice and has written for the buddhist magazines Shambhala Sun, Tricycle and Buddhadharma. He has been profiled by The New York Times, Village Voice and CBS News (interviewed by Dr. Jon LaPook). For the last four years Josh has also led classes at ZenCare.org, a non-profit organization that trains hospice volunteers. Josh has had the honor to study with countless spiritual teachers in the Theravadan Buddhist tradition, including Noah Levine, Vinny Ferraro, Ajahns Geoff, Sucitto, Amaro and Tara Brach to name a few. Josh’s dharma talks are followed by a large online community at dharmapunxnyc.podbean.com.