"Leah Weiss is a Contemplative Educator whose research focuses on the application of meditation in secular contexts. She has taught in a variety of settings including at Harvard affiliated hospitals, the Boston Center for Refugee Health and Human Rights, the Alzheimer’s association, and the Department of Veterans Affairs. In 2008, Leah co-founded the Foundation for Active Compassion, a nonprofit organization which provides meditation practices of compassion and wisdom to people involved in social service and social change work. Her work at CCARE includes curriculum development and teaching. She developed and directs the CCT Teacher Certification Program as well as other educational initiatives. Leah received her BA from Stanford University, her MA in clinical social work from Boston College, and her PhD in theology and education from Boston College. Her website is
Kate Lila Wheeler began teaching meditation in the mid-1980s and continues to practice with teachers in Theravada and Tibetan Buddhist lineages. Writing is an important part of her life; she has recently completed a second novel.
Lisa Dale Miller, LMFT, LPCC, SEP, is a private practice psychotherapist in Los Gatos, CA. She specializes in mindfulness psychotherapy and Somatic Experiencing therapy for the treatment of depression, anxiety, addiction, trauma, emotional dysregulation, chronic pain, and relationship stress. Lisa is an outpatient clinician for the Veterans Administration San Jose and a teacher of Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention (MBRP) for addiction, Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) for depression relapse prevention, and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR). Lisa also presents at conferences and trains clinicians in the clinical applications of Buddhist psychology. She has been a yogic and Buddhist meditation practitioner for four decades.
Margaret Gainer began Buddhist meditation practice in 1995 and teaches at several Bay area meditation groups and churches. Margaret completed Sati Center Buddhist Chaplaincy Training, and since 2005 has taught a weekly meditation class for women inmates at Elmwood Correctional Facility in Milpitas. Margaret is a member of First Congregational Church of San Jose and brings Buddhist teachings and understanding into the life of the church.
Matthew Brensilver, MSW, PhD, serves on the Guiding Teachers Committee and Board of Directors at Spirit Rock Meditation Center. He was previously Program Director for Mindful Schools and for more than a decade, was a core teacher at Against the Stream Buddhist Meditation Society. Each summer, he lectures at UCLA’s Mindful Awareness Research Center on the intersections between mindfulness, science and mental health. Before committing to teach meditation full-time, he spent years doing research on addiction pharmacotherapy at the UCLA Center for Behavioral and Addiction Medicine. He is the co-author of two books about meditation during adolescence.
Misha Shungen Merrill is the primary teacher for Zen Heart Sangha in Menlo Park and Woodside, California, as well as the guiding teacher for the Twining Vines Sangha of New York. She has been practicing Zen since 1984 and received Dharma Transmission (permission to teach) in 1998 in the lineage of Shunryu Suzuki Roshi, the founder of SanFrancisco Zen Center. Misha also teaches at Peninsula School in Menlo Park where she is the librarian. She resides in Woodside with her husband and four-footed friends.