All Conferences
Our Speakers
Fred Luskin
Dr.Luskin is a Senior Consultant in Health Promotion and the Director of the Stanford Forgiveness Projects. He speaks nationally on the importance of emotional intelligence and the need to manage stress. His research centers on the intersection of spiritual values and physical and emotional well being.
Roni Habib
Roni is the founder of EQSchools, an organization dedicated to providing Emotional Intelligence training to teachers, students, and parents nationally and abroad. He teaches Positive Psychology at Gunn High School in Palo Alto and is the director of the MERIT Institute at Foothill College. Roni speaks and consults for schools and business organizations on the topics of Mindfulness, Creative Confidence, Emotional Intelligence, Positive Psychology, Design Thinking, and the importance of Play. He lived in Israel and Belgium before coming to the U.S. where he got his Masters of Education and teaching credential at Harvard. He currently lives in Sunnyvale, California, with his wife Allison and two children, Eli and Leah.
Donnovan Somera Yisrael
Donnovan Somera Yisrael ('89) is the Manager of Emotional & Sexual Health Programs with I Thrive @ Stanford (Health Promotion Services) at Vaden Health Center. Through interactive course lectures and workshops in the residences he introduces students to the practices that lead to healing, health and happiness. During his 20+ year career as a health educator he has encouraged his audiences to critically examine the media they consume and the cultures that they navigate each day to understand the conscious and unconscious ways that cultural values and messages affect our health.
Daniel Rechtschaffen
Daniel Rechtschaffen, Marriage and Family Therapist, is the author of The Way of Mindful Education and The Mindful Education Workbook. He leads mindfulness trainings and helps develop curricula for schools and organizations around the world, such as the South Burlington School District, Marin Preparatory School, and Phucket International Academy in Thailand. He is the training director for SEEDS of a Awareness, a mindfulness based school counseling non-profit in the Bay Area. Daniel is also the director of Mindful Education, a mindfulness and emotional intelligence training program for educators.
Shawnrey Notto
Award winning performer, speaker, dancer, and choreographer, Shawnrey is dedicated to guiding and inspiring professionals to be the confident leaders they are meant to be. She specializes in stage presence and public appearances be they in a classroom, on a stage, or in front of a board room. Her mindfulness-based movement methodology combines dance, yoga, theater, and mindfulness meditation. Her clients include teachers, administrators, entrepreneurs, and children around the world, who have attended her live workshops or coaching to unlock their ability to be powerful, connected, joyful, with magnetic presence both on stage and off­stage, inside and out.
Carin Winter
Carin Winter is the founder and CEO of Mission Be and has successfully lead their mindful education program into 28 schools from Big Sur, California to Harlem, New York. Carin has trained thousands of educators and students. She holds a LMSW with a clinical background and 15 years of experience working with youth in schools, offering children's yoga & movement, counseling and mindfulness. Carin has been studying the work of mindfulness for over 20 years and is talented meditation teacher, gifted speaker and visionary.
Martin Blank
Martin E. Blank is entrepreneur, educator and consultant with a degree from UC Berkeley in Education, Social Change and Linguistics. He has reached over 15,000 students, educators, and administrators nationwide in public and private schools for 11 years. Since 2013, he has focused on incorporating mindfulness in schools through the YES! for Schools program and through his own organization, he provides education, arts and music to underserved communities in the greater SF Bay Area. He is also a sailor and the co-founder of a successful Bay Area-based 14-member Cumbia orchestra, Pasto Seco Band, and lives in Redwood City, California with his girlfriend and a small assortment of baby stuffed animals.
Nicole Steward
Nicole Steward is a social worker (MSW) and yoga instructor (200RYT) with a focus on community engagement, public education, foster youth advocacy, and trauma-informed yoga. With more than a decade of social work practice in non-profits and accountability work in K-12 education, Nicole has noticed the need for radical self-care to discharge toxic stress we absorb through our work. This awareness drives her to study the ways yoga and mindfulness affect our brains and bodies, keeping us engaged and renewed. Nicole teaches yoga and offers self-care workshops to social service agencies and non-profit organizations. Nicole believes self-care is a radical tendency we must adopt if we are to sustain ourselves as service providers and human beings.
Anne Marie Sebastiani
Anne Marie Sebastiani helps school teachers and principals lead by example and feel alive knowing they are making the difference that called them to education in the first place. She delivers innovative talks that help educators implement a powerful vision for ultimate school success. Holding top leadership positions in schools for over twenty years, she delivers workshops, speeches and powerful trainings that combine intuition with modern leadership to break free of overwhelm and master their true work and life flow!
Meike Hennon
Since 2012, Meike, a former high school English teacher and co-founder of Shinebright, an education organization rooted in Positive Psychology, has dedicated her time to helping student's embrace their authentic self and strengthen their self-worth. Over the last three years, Meike has worked to create curriculum and workshops using innovative educational tools to help students embrace their unique strengths and learn how to leverage them. Her passion is to empower students to know themselves and to be able to make informed, confident decisions towards their future.
Mahaliyah Grace
Mahaliyah is the founder of Ready 2 Rise, an organization offering collaborative environments devoted to supporting the embodiment of human potential through all stages of evolution. Mahaliyah facilitates peak performance in individuals and organizations through a variety of experiential activities including meditation practices, yoga education, self-inquiry, lifestyle design, and authentic communication. She has been professionally supporting others in cultivating their highest expression in these ways for nearly a decade, weaving her own unique content inspired by trainings in non-violent communication, yoga (200 RYT), Vipassana, trauma and diversity sensitivity (Off The Mat), Love & Logic, psychology (BA), project/people/life management (MBA), and more innovative, transformation based programs. Mahaliyah is presently focused on getting these teachings into elementary and middle schools as part of their main school day curriculums. Her current home base is in Phoenix, Arizona, where she curiously rides the waves of mothering her three year-old daughter and loves exploring sustainable living options as her favorite hobby.
Tarn Wilson
Tarn Wilson has been teaching journaling and creative writing to teenagers and adults for over twenty years. She earned her MA in Education from Stanford and her MFA from the Rainier Writing Workshop. In 2014, her memoir the Slow Farm was published by Ovenbird Books, and her essays appear in numerous literary journals. Learn more about her at
Shani Robin
"Shani Robins, Ph.D. is an instructor at Stanford University where he teaches his Wisdom course in Stanford’s Well-Being Program and his Wisdom Therapy course in Stanford Medical School’s Health Improvement Program. He is a licensed Psychologist, a National Institute of Mental Health Fellow, has pioneered the field of Wisdom TherapyTM in 1998, and is the founder and president of the Wisdom Therapy Institute ( Dr. Robins is the author of many scientific journal articles and book chapters. He trains Ph.D. clinical interns and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in emotional intelligence, positive psychology, research, statistics, clinical, cognitive, social, health, and developmental psychologies. In addition to his research, teaching, and clinical practice, Dr. Robins is also a corporate consultant for Fortune 100 companies and has given numerous talks and trainings nationally and internationally on the applications of Wisdom Therapy and Emotional Intelligence to workplace stress reduction, anger management, conflict resolution, and productivity. Dr. Robins is an avid racquetball player and also enjoys playing chess and GO. He rollerblades, salsa dances, runs the occasional marathon, and strives to appreciate the simple things"
Todd Armstrong
A graduate of Colgate University, Todd spent 20 years in the tech industry with IBM before pursuing teaching. Currently with Synapse School where he teaches middle school social and emotional learning (SEL), Todd is also co-founder of the EQ Vehicle, an educational start-up mission-ed with bringing SEL to underserved schools while promoting a practicing Bay Area-wide SEL community. A board member of the East Palo Alto Rotary Club, Todd is committed to strengthening its community. A father of three, Todd enjoys cooking, drumming, reading, fitness and engaging the California coast with his four legged son, Samson.
John Remark
John is an improv coach, actor, corporate trainer, and attorney. He has performed and trained improv for over 20 years throughout the U.S., Canada, and Europe. He's a company member and former Artistic Director at San Francisco's premier troupe, BATS Improv, as well as Managing Director of the S.F.'s Secret Improv Society.
Sarah Newman
Sarah Newman is a Positive Psychology Practitioner and the founder of The Mindful Kids, a program developed to provide children with access to mindfulness skills and practices that can help them not only succeed, but also flourish - in school and in their lives. Sarah teaches in the Palo Alto Unified School District and offers classes, workshops, one-on-one coaching and mentoring for both children and adults.
Joan Young
Joan Young is a passionate educator who has taught students of all ages over the past two decades. With a deep interest in strengths based and positive psychology, Joan is thrilled to be teaching Self-Science at Keys Middle School. She is the author of 2 published books: Scholastic's 25 Super Sight Word Songs and Mini-books for K/1 teachers, and Encouragement in the Classroom, published by ASCD. Joan is also known on Twitter and around her PLN members as @flourishingkids. She believes that our goal should not be simply for kids to "succeed" in school; we must ensure that they "flourish" and become their best possible selves.
Diane Ichikawa
Diane (RYT 200) has been a dedicated yogini since she discovered the practice in her early twenties. She hopes that her students will begin to see the clarity that a connection among the body, the breath, and the mind can bring--and how that clarity can move with them throughout the rest of their busy days. Using her background in teaching literature, she creates a narrative that helps students find a balance between learning their best physical alignment and maintaining mental focus with the breath. Diane has learned something from each of her teachers--notably Phoenix Artemisia, Mark Tanaka, Hana Raftery, and Jillian Glikbarg.
Robert Ahdoot

Robert Ahdoot began his education 12 years ago as a math teacher, and remains one to this day. Throughout that time, his personal mission was to tune into every specific way to reach his students, to connect to them as learners and as people, and reverse any state of shutdown they experience. One mental note led to several, which led to a living and growing teacher playbook. Through years of dedication and focus on student connection, his classes became fun, lively, and positive beacons of learning for both him and his students.

Yet within so elevated a space, he and his students felt a restlessness. It was the dawn of the video era, and they knew that what they were stumbling upon something that could truly benefit others, if they could only experience it. So out came an impromptu camcorder perched atop a precarious stack of books, and the Yay Math movement was born. is a free online collection of math video lessons, filmed LIVE in Robert's classroom, featuring authentic student interaction that's inviting and emotionally connective. It has given life to now iconic, full costume math characters, like the "MathemaGyptian" and "MathemaChicken." Since its inception, Yay Math videos are viewed at a staggering 2 million minutes per month.

Yay Math's online proliferation has provided him the opportunity to give multiple TEDx talks on conquering math anxiety, speak at schools about how to permanently achieve inspired learning, and pen his debut book, One-on-One 101: The Art of Inspired and Effective Individual Instruction. It's the complete guide to connecting to students on a One-on-One level, and it has been adopted by school administrations as a blueprint for cultivating meaningful student-teacher learning relationships.

Pam Lozoff
Pam Lozoff is a trained social worker (MSW) and yoga instructor (RYT) who specializes in holistic youth development as a means of fostering physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being. She has 7+ years of experience in youth development, program development, and yoga teaching. Seeking to merge social justice and yoga, her work in the field of yoga service has led her to work with youth in the juvenile justice system, therapeutic day schools, public & charter schools, and group home settings. She is also the Founder/Director of Spirit of Youth Yoga which offers yoga and social-emotional learning circles to youth, families, and service providers to build self-awareness, leadership, and community together.
Bill Overton
Bill has always been an advocate for strong social-emotional programs in schools. His experience at Ohlone Elementary School in Palo Alto and related training proved how academic rigor and success and social and emotional well-being are not mutually exclusive. He believes that strong relationships make the difference in student success. As both a teacher and principal, his number one focus was establishing such relationships with students, parents, and teachers. He believes that as educators we have two curriculum responsibilities: the academic skills needed and the life skills that are critical in helping kids navigate the social milieu and life's ups and downs.