Initially created as a pilot program through a grant from the Frederick P. Lenz Foundation
for American Buddhism, the Center for the Advancement of Contemplative Education is
now providing important leadership in the growing contemplative education movement.
The Center is made possible through the generous support of the Schocken Foundation,
the Frederick P. Lenz Foundation for American Buddhism, and individual donors.
The Center's staff and faculty are comprised of a unique and diverse team who specialize
in contemplative approaches to teaching that include, yoga studies, transpersonal
psychology, religious studies, social, racial and climate awareness, meditation and
mindfulness practices, music, the arts and more. Through the collaborations and intersections
of these various curriclums, we offer students, faculty, staff a wide variety of perspectives
in which to cultivate and build upon their individual practices, creative expression
and life experience as a means to directly explore and engage with personal and social
Charlotte Rotterdam- Director of Naropa University’s Center for the Advancement of Contemplative Education
Beginning in 1995, she served as Program and Managing Director of Naropa’s School
for Extended Studies for ten years; most recently she directed the University’s 40th
Anniversary, which included the Radical Compassion Symposium and the inauguration
of the Francisco Varela Lecture Series on Science & Mindfulness. She was Program Director
at Shambhala Mountain Center and Executive Director and Board President of Tara Mandala
Buddhist Retreat Center, where she is also an authorized teacher. An Instructor at
Naropa, she has taught in the Religious Studies department and continues to teach
the Contemplative Learning Seminar in the Core College. Charlotte received her Masters
in Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School. Her essays on the intersection
of spiritual practice and motherhood have been published in Mandala and in an anthology,
Bhanu Kapil, Associate Professor Interdisciplinary Studies
Janelli Chapin, Instructor of Psychotherapy, Buddhist Psychology and Clinical Mental Health Counseling
Regina Smith, Executive Director for Mission Integration and Student Affairs
CACE Advisory Board Members
Thomas B. Coburn, PhD, is a Religious Studies scholar specializing in South Asian religion who served as
president of Naropa University from 2003 to 2009. The pilot phase of the Center for
the Advancement of Contemplative Education was inaugurated during his tenure. He is
currently a visiting scholar at Brown University’s Contemplative Studies program.
Previously he was vice president and dean of academic affairs at St. Lawrence University,
where he served for many years as the Charles A. Dana Professor of Religious Studies.
Carolyn Jacobs, PhD, is Dean Emerita of Smith College School for Social Work and Elizabeth Marting Treuhaft
Professor Emerita. While serving on the Smith faculty, she created and served as director
of the Contemplative Clinical Practice certificate program. She has written and presented
extensively on the topics of contemplative practice, spirituality, and clinical social
work practice. She is also a spiritual director. Among many professional volunteer
activities, she serves on the Boards of the Mind & Life Institute, Contemplative Mind
in Society, and Naropa University.
Qualifications for Contemplative Educators
Tish Jennings, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Education at the Curry School of Education at the University
of Virginia. She is an internationally recognized researcher in the field of social
and emotional learning with a specific emphasis on teacher stress and how it impacts
the social and emotional context of the classroom and student learning. In her work
at Garrison Institute’s CARE for Teachers program and in the Prevention Research Center
at Penn State, she conducted federally funded research on teacher well-being.
A Contemplative Call to Justice
Al Kaszniak, PhD, is director of the Arizona Alzheimer's Consortium Education Core, and a professor
in the departments of psychology, neurology, and psychiatry at The University of Arizona.
His work has focused on the neuropsychology of Alzheimer's disease and other age-related
neurological disorders, consciousness, memory self-monitoring, emotion, and the psychophysiology
of long-term and short-term meditation, and his research has been supported by federal
and private foundation grants. He has served as Chief Academic Officer for the Mind
and Life Institute. In addition to his academic and administrative roles, he is a
lineage holder and teacher (Sensei) in the Soto tradition of Zen Buddhism.
David I. Rome is a teacher, coach, and writer specializing in contemplative methods for personal,
organizational, and social change. A close student of both Chögyam Trungpa and Eugene
Gendlin, David has integrated Buddhist mindfulness-awareness techniques and Gendlin’s
felt sense work into the practice of Mindful Focusing. Formerly, he was a Senior Fellow
at the Garrison Institute.
Ed Sarath is the Professor of Jazz and Contemporary Improvisation at the University of Michigan,
is active worldwide as performer, composer, author, and change visionary. He is founder
and President of the International Society for Improvised Music. His book Improvisation,
Creativity, and Consciousness (SUNY 2013) is the first to apply principals of Integral Theory to music. His most
recent recordings is NewBeginnings, featuring the London Jazz Orchestra performing his large ensemble compsotions. He
is a National Endowment for the Arts. Recent keynote addresses included National Association
of Schools of Music, Society for Consciousness Studies, and University of Melbourne.