Jane has been a member of the Shambhala community since 1997. She has held many leadership positions in Shambhala, including the Director of the Boulder Shambhala Center in Boulder, Colorado and the Director of Karme Choling, a Shambhala residential retreat center in Barnet, Vermont. She also lived at Shambhala Mountain Center as Head of Practice & Education from 2005-2006, where she met her partner, John McClory.
She is currently the Director of Residential and Retreat centers in Shambhala. She has just been appointed Kalapa Envoy for Leadership Training and Mentorship and she sits on the Kalapa Council. In her work outside of the Shambhala organization, she is the Director of the Vermont Leadership Institute and Vermont Leadership Network at the Snelling Center for Government. She also sits on several boards in her community and is trained as a nurse and an attorney.
Jane and John live in Danville, VT. She has a BS in nursing from Texas Christian University and a J.D. from the George Washington University National Law Center.
Amelie is a psychotherapist who specializes in body-centered counseling, EMDR and infant and early childhood mental health. She maintains a private practice in Boulder, CO where she provides treatment, education and training. Amelie is an alumna and former adjunct faculty at Naropa University.
A native of Germany, Amelie first came to SMC in 1998 on a visit to the United States. Since that time, she has been haunted by the magical beauty and transformative power of the “Land” and the dharma being taught here. She has regularly come back here for visits, work at the Stupa, retreats, Scorpion Seal Assemblies, and a number of volunteer roles.
Amelie is a teacher and meditation instructor in the Shambhala tradition. She encountered the dharma in 1995 as a student of Thich Nhat Hanh, and in 2004 became a student of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. She joined the Shambhala Mountain Center Governing Council in 2012. She is married, has a daughter, and lives in Boulder, CO.
She has a Bachelors degree in Literature, Philosophy and Roman languages from University of Tuebingen and a Masters in Somatic Psychology from Naropa University (2003).
Connie spent 30 years with Wells Fargo (formerly Norwest Corporation) in the technology group, where she managed over 100 people and helped lead their technology planning. She retired in 2000.
She joined Shambhala in 1989 and is a meditation instructor and Shambhala Training director. In recent years, Connie has attended various Scorpion Seal Assemblies.
Connie has held a number of leadership positions within Shambhala including Treasurer Minneapolis Shambhala Center (currently), Director Minneapolis Shambhala Center, Shambhala Trust (currently), board member Shambhala International, member of the Sakyong’s Council, Shambhala Treasurer (currently), Chagdzo Kyi Khyap “bursar general” (currently), board member Kalapa Council
She splits her time living in Hawaii and Minnesota and earned a B.S. in math from Illinois Institute of Technology.
Dr. Michael Gayner has been the Executive Director of Shambhala Mountain Center since the summer of 2012. Prior to taking on the role of Executive Director, he served here as Chief Operating Officer and Director of Guest Services. Michael has served in a number of capacities in the Shambhala community, including those of Denma Corps Officer and Head of Protocol in the Office of the Kalapa Court. Michael is a student of the Sakyong, Mipham Rinpoche and travelled with him as an attendant and secretary.
Prior to coming to Shambhala Mountain Center, Michael owned a benefits management company in Canada, serving not-for-profit organizations across the country. He worked as a teacher in Canada and Japan, and served as an officer in the Canadian Armed Forces.
Michael first came to Shambhala Mountain Center in 1994 for a three-month seminary, and has been returning regularly since, taking most of his core path Shambhala programs here, including Scorpion Seal Assemblies and Monarch Retreats.
He earned a Ph.D. in education from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto.
Alex Halpern is an attorney in private practice in Boulder, Colorado, specializing in nonprofit, corporate, and education law. Alex has been a member of the Shambhala community since moving to Boulder in 1972. He has served as a member of the Shambhala Mountain Center Board of Directors and its legal counsel since its formation in 2000.
Over the years, Alex has also served as a board member for Shambhala USA, Naropa University, and as the president of Ashoka Credit Union. He is a kyudo practitioner and instructor at the Zenko Kyudojo. Alex and his wife, Carol, have three adult children, Sol, Eve, and Peter, and three grandchildren.
He received his juris doctor degree from the University of Denver School of Law in 1976 and Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from Brandeis University (1970.)
Laura Leslie is the owner of Being Horse and is a practitioner of Equine Facilitated Learning and Coaching. She specializes with clients with chronic illness and with health care practitioners to improve their relationships to patients.
Laura connected to Shambhala in 2002 while living in New York City. She worked at Dorje Denma Ling, a land center in Nova Scotia. She connected strongly with Shambhala Mountain Center in the summer of 2008 doing multiple retreats on the land. She is now a meditation instructor to the staff at SMC, an active Kasung, and has been honored to serve as an attendant to Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche and Sakyong Wangmo Khandro Tseyang.
Laura joined the SMC Board in 2014 as the Dorje Kasung member.
She received her degree from New York University in Theater and Buddhism.
Cliff has been engaged as a principal in his own law firms for over 40 years, emphasizing corporate and securities law in the representation of companies in matters of corporate finance, mergers, acquisitions, reorganizations and public and private offerings. He has served on the boards of directors of numerous public, private and non-profit companies and has been actively involved in the process of capital formation on behalf of his clients for many years. He is also the Managing Partner of Gemini Gaming, LLC, which owns and operates a gaming casino in Blackhawk, Colorado.
He currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Medicine Horse Program, a non-profit equine assisted psychotherapy facility in Boulder, and as Director and CEO of Ratna Foundation, a non-profit charitable foundation, which he founded with his wife Margot.
Cliff has been attending dharma programs at SMC since 1975 and was a student of the Venerable Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche who officiated his wedding ceremony with Margot that same year. He has three adult children and four grandchildren.
He received his Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Pennsylvania and his Bachelor of Arts degree, magna cum laude from Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa.
David Schreier is president of David Schreier Associates, a consulting business serving nonprofit organizations in the areas of governance, management, collaboration, marketing, communication, programs, planning & evaluation, and philanthropy. He is also an adjunct professor at Concordia University and Benedictine University and teaches courses on nonprofit management and governance to undergraduate and graduate students.
David first came to SMC in 2002 for a winter dathun, and since then he’s returned every year for a program or retreat. He is a meditation instructor, Shambhala Training Assistant Director and teacher, and was invited to join the first faculty of miksang instructors. In 2009, Sakyong Wangmo Khandro Tseyang invited him to become a Lingdro dance student of hers.
David joined the Shambhala Mountain Center Governing Council in 2012. In 2013, he directed Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche’s groundbreaking “Imagining Peace” visit to Chicago. He is a student of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche and in recent years has attended Monarch Retreat and various Scorpion Seal Assemblies.
David lives in Chicago, IL. He has a B.A. in English cum laude from University of Illinois and a M.S. in Public Service from DePaul University.
Dylan Smith is a business leader with experience in manufacturing, process improvement and information technology. Recent positions include being president of a mid-sized manufacturing company, and Co-Founder of Second Person Software, a company developing custom technology communications tools for manufacturing companies. Before joining the Shambhala Mountain Center Governing Council, Dylan sat on the Board of Directors for the American Gear Manufacturers Association.
Dylan first came to SMC in 2000 for Vajradhatu Seminary to formally become a student of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. He has since returned every year for many of the retreats that are offered at SMC. Dylan has a strong connection to the Dorje Kasung path within Shambhala, and served as a personal attendant to Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche during 2006 and 2007. Dylan continues to provide leadership and training within the Dorje Kasung.
He lives in Vancouver, Canada with his wife Lisa and son Tobin. He has a Bachelor of Commerce degree in Entrepreneurial Management from Royal Road University.
Karen Wilding is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with a private practice in Boulder Colorado. She is a member of Boulder Psychological Services and serves on their leadership team. She was previously the Director of Counseling at September School for 17 years. She has served as chairperson of several non-profit boards including Attention Homes, Boulder County AIDS Project, Tibetan Village Project, and Shambhala Mountain Center.
Karen moved to Boulder in 1975 because the Venerable Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche told her that families should gather there for the early years of Karma Dzong and Naropa University.
She has taught at Naropa, Boulder Shambhala Center and Shambhala Mountain Center, and served as an MI for many years. She is currently a student of the Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche and attends Scorpion Seal Assemblies.
Karen has been attending programs at Shambhala Mountain Center since 1976, and considers it the most magical, open-hearted and spacious place in the world. She received a B.A. in English cum laude from University of Rochester and a Master of Social Work from University of Denver.