Arthur Zajonc

Arthur ZajoncARTHUR ZAJONC is President of the Mind & Life Institute in Hadley, Massachusetts and emeritus professor of physics at Amherst College. He received his B.S. and PhD in physics from the University of Michigan. His research has included studies in electron-atom physics, parity violation in atoms, quantum optics, the experimental foundations of quantum physics, and the relationship between science, the humanities and the contemplative traditions. He is author of the book Catching the Light; co-author of The Quantum Challenge; and co-editor of Goethe’s Way of Science. In 2003, Zajonc was moderator for the “Investigating the Mind” Mind & Life Dialogue at MIT. The proceedings of this meeting were published under the title The Dalai Lama at MIT (Harvard UP 2006). Former executive director of the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society, Zajonc has authored Meditation as Contemplative Inquiry: When Knowing Becomes Love, and has co-authored a book with Parker Palmer, The Heart of Higher Education: A Call to Renewal.

Diana Chapman Walsh

Diana Chapman WalshDIANA CHAPMAN WALSH currently serves on the governing boards of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard; the Kaiser Family Foundation; the Institute for Healthcare Improvement; and the Mind & Life Institute, and on national advisory boards. She was a director of the State Street Corporation (1999-2007) and a trustee of Amherst College (1998-2010). Her term as president of Wellesley College (1993-2007) was marked by educational innovation, including a revision of the curriculum and expanded programs in global education, the humanities, internships and service learning, interdisciplinary teaching and learning, and religious and spiritual life. President Walsh evolved a distinctive style of reflective leadership rooted in a network of resilient partnerships and anchored in the belief that trustworthy leadership starts from within.

Mirabai Bush

Mirabai BushMIRABAI BUSH is Senior Fellow and the founding Director of the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to encourage contemplative awareness in American life in order to create a more just, compassionate, and reflective society. She has designed and led mindfulness trainings for corporations from Hearst to Google, where she was a key developer of Search Inside Yourself, a training that has now reached more than 2000 Google engineers. She has also developed programs in contemplative practice for journalists, lawyers and judges, higher education faculty, environmental leaders, social justice activists, and the Army. She is co-author, with Ram Dass, of Compassion in Action: Setting Out on the Path of Service, author of Working with Mindfulness (a CD, an e-book, and a series of webinars), and editor of Contemplation Nation: How Ancient Practices Are Changing the Way We Live. She is most recently co-author of Contemplative Practices in Higher Education: Powerful Methods to Transform Teaching and Learning.

Daniel Goleman

Daniel GolemanDANIEL GOLEMAN is a psychologist and science writer best-known for his worldwide best-seller Emotional Intelligence, published in 40 languages. He taught at Harvard University before becoming an editor and journalist, covering the brain and behavioral science for the New York Times. He is a co-founder of the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Intelligence at the University of Illinois, co-director of the Consortium for Research on Emotional Intelligence in Organizations at Rutgers University, and board member of the Mind & Life Institute. He received his PhD in psychology from Harvard University. For two years he traveled in India studying Buddhist and other spiritual systems of psychology, the first year as a Harvard Traveling Fellow, the second as a Research Fellow of the Social Science Research Council. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and has received many awards for his writing. He is the author of numerous books, including The Meditative Mind, Destructive Emotions, Leadership: The Power of Emotional Intelligence, and, most recently, Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence.

Arawana Hayashi

Mirabai BushARAWANA HAYASHI’s work as a choreographer, performer and educator is deeply sourced in collaborative improvisation. She currently heads the creation of Social Presencing Theater (SPT) for the Presencing Institute. Working with Otto Scharmer and colleagues, she brings her background in the arts and meditation to creating embodiment practices that illuminate both current reality and emerging future possibilities. Her dance career ranges from directing an interracial street dance company formed by the Boston Mayor’s Office for Cultural Affairs following the 1968 murder of Dr. Martin Luther King, to being a recognized performer of Japanese Court Dance, bugaku, in the US. She has been Co-Director of the Dance Program at Naropa University, Boulder, CO; and founder-director of two dance companies in Cambridge. MA. She continues to perform in a multi-disciplinary ensemble, originating out of Naropa University and the ALIA Institute, where she currently teaches in leadership programs. Arawana is an acharya (senior teacher) in Shambhala—a global network of meditation centers dedicated to “creating enlightened society,” based on bringing out the basic goodness of individuals and of society.

Sharon Daloz Parks

Sharon Daloz ParksSHARON DALOZ PARKS, author of Leadership Can Be Taught: A Bold Approach for a Complex World is a teacher/speaker, theorist, and consultant. For sixteen years she held faculty and research positions at Harvard University in the schools of Divinity, Business, and the Kennedy School of Government. She currently teaches at Seattle University and is a senior fellow at the Whidbey Institute. Her other writings include Big Questions, Worthy Dreams, and the co-authored, Common Fire: Leading Lives of Commitment in a Complex World.

Otto Scharmer

Otto ScharmerOTTO SCHARMER, author of Theory U and co-author of the newly released Leading from the Emerging Future: From Ego-system to Eco-system Economies, is an action researcher who co-creates innovations in learning and leadership that he delivers through classes and programs at MIT, MITx U.Lab, the Presencing Institute, and through innovation projects with organizations in business, government and civil society around the world. He is a senior lecturer at Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School of Management. He is co-founder of the Presencing Institute. Through MITx and he currently delivers the U-Lab, a new type of social entrepreneurship MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) that uses presencing practices of co-sensing and co-creating emerging futures with a platform of 25,000 participants from 191 countries that collaborate through more than 100 self-organized U.Lab Hubs across countries and cultures.  Scharmer holds a PhD in economics and management from Witten-Herdecke University in Germany. For more information visit or

Peter Senge

Senge_PeterPETER SENGE is a senior lecturer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and founding chair of the SoL (Society for Organizational Learning) Council. He is the author of The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization, co-author of the three related fieldbooks, Presence: An Exploration of Profound Change in People, Society, and Organizations and most recently, The Necessary Revolution: How Individuals and Organizations are Working Together to Create a Sustainable World. Peter lectures throughout the world about decentralizing the role of leadership in organizations to enhance the capacity of all people to work toward healthier human systems.

Daniel J. Siegel, MD

Dan Siegel DANIEL J. SIEGEL, MD is a graduate of Harvard Medical School and completed his postgraduate medical education at UCLA with training in pediatrics and child, adolescent, and adult psychiatry. He is currently a clinical professor of psychiatry at the UCLA School of Medicine, founding co-director of UCLA’s Mindful Awareness Research Center, founding co-investigator at the UCLA Center for Culture, Brain and Development, and executive director of the Mindsight Institute, an educational center devoted to promoting insight, compassion, and empathy in individuals, families, institutions, and communities. Dr. Siegel’s books include Mindsight, Pocket Guide to Interpersonal Neurobiology, The Developing Mind, Second Edition, The Mindful Therapist, The Mindful Brain, Parenting from the Inside Out (with Mary Hartzell, MEd), and the three New York Times bestsellers: Brainstorm, The Whole-Brain Child (with Tina Payne Bryson, PhD), and his latest No-Drama Discipline (with Tina Payne Bryson, PhD). He has been invited to lecture for the King of Thailand, Pope John Paul II, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Google University, and TEDx. For more information about his educational programs and resources, please visit

Aaron Stern

Aaron SternAARON STERN is a composer, teacher, internationally recognized consultant on learning, and the founder of the innovative educational institution, the Academy for the Love of Learning in Santa Fe, NM. He conceived the academy with famed musician Leonard Bernstein, and serves as its President. As educational leader of the Academy, Stern designed and directs the Academy’s core curriculum and foundational program, Leading by Being. He conducts consultancies and seminars throughout the United States and Europe. The Academy for the Love of Learning was conceived in the middle 1980s and developed over the next decade. The organization was founded formally in 1998 as a non-profit “think and do tank”. The intent of the Academy has been to develop and practice transformative learning methods that reanimate the love of learning in people of all ages while awakening a secular-based moral and ethical framework for human learning and engagement.

Edward Taylor

Edward TaylorEdward Taylor is vice provost and dean of Undergraduate Academic Affairs at the University of Washington. As a professor in the UW’s College of Education, which he joined in 1995, his research, teaching and writing have centered on moral dimensions of education and integrative education, leadership in education and social justice. In 2013, he co-authored the book entitled Transformative Conversations, A Guide to Mentoring Communities among Colleagues in Higher Education, and a second publication entitled Inside the Undergraduate Teaching Experience, The University of Washington’s Growth in Faculty Teaching Study. Dr. Taylor earned his PhD in educational leadership and policy studies at the University of Washington and his master’s degree in psychology at Gonzaga University. Active in the community, Dr. Taylor is a trustee and a former regent of Gonzaga University. He has worked extensively with school leaders in South Africa developing a coalition of township schools to better serve children in post-apartheid South Africa and was a founding board member of Rainier Scholars, a scholastic preparation program for high-achieving children from underserved areas in Seattle.
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