All Instructors of Mindfulness Institute programs have solid, grounded meditation and mindfulness practices and direct personal experience with the subject matter they are presenting, having used and practiced the methods in their own lives. Instructors are familiar with current research and best practices relevant to the material they are presenting. MI Instructors have experience applying mindfulness practices in a wide range of organizational backgrounds, including law, finance, education, mental health, health care and non-profit management. The professional credentials and experience of our Instructors range from mental health to medical to corporate/organizational training, and more.
Betsy Arizu, MA worked in public education for 20 years as a school counselor and high school teacher. In counseling she incorporated mindfulness to promote social/emotional well-being, stress reduction, and mindful creativity in art. Through the Mindfulness Institute she teaches introductory classes in mindfulness and meditation, and workshops to help educators and counselors integrate the practice of mindfulness into their personal and professional lives. She is the FCM's Community Care Leader and former coordinator of the FCM Family Program. Currently she serves as president of the FCM Board of Directors.
Susan Ghosh is a retired clinical social worker who worked with families and couples, and with individuals experiencing anxiety and depression. She is also trained as a personal coach. In partnership with her golden retriever, a therapy dog, she volunteered at St. Joseph’s Hospital for 8 years and visited over 5,000 patients. She has been practicing with the Florida Community of Mindfulness for many years.
Bryan Hindert has been practicing mindfulness and meditation since 2008, when a strong desire to make changes in his life and to develop a better relationship with his mind drew him to the Florida Community of Mindfulness. Since then, he has taken part in Intensive practice periods offered by FCM, both group and solitary retreats, and every opportunity offered by the community to deepen his practice. Bryan enjoys serving the community in any way he is able, and he loves to share the practices of mindfulness and meditation with others so they too can enjoy the freedom these practices can bring.
Stephanie Bachmann Mattei is a certified trainer with the Center for Nonviolent Communication and is a Provisionally Qualified Teacher of MBSR through the UC-San Diego (UCSD) Mindfulness-Based Professional Institute. She is also a well published certified Parent Educator and holds a certificate through Mindful Schools. She is passionate about teaching and experienced in developing workshops and retreats that integrate communication skills, interpersonal skills, effective conflict resolution, and emotional intelligence with mindfulness.
Nancy Natilson, Mindfulness Institute Director, has been a student of the Dharma since 2002, and a member of the Florida Community of Mindfulness since 2005. She was ordained in the Order of Interbeing in 2011 and currently serves on FCM’s Board of Directors. Nancy is a semi-retired international development consultant, specializing in microfinance and reproductive health. She is also on the Board of Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida and volunteers at the Tampa clinic. She and her husband, Andrew Rock reside in Seminole Heights in Tampa and spend half the year in Nova Scotia.
Angie Parrish has been a student of Buddhism and mindfulness for over 20 years. After a 1999 retreat with Thich Nhat Hanh, she became a student of Fred Eppsteiner's and a member of the Florida Community of Mindfulness. Angie brought the fruits of her experience in mindfulness and meditation into her professional career as an employee benefits consultant for a wide variety of organizations, including many employee training programs. She now is a Provisionally Qualified Teacher of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and serves as Executive Director of FCM and is a frequent teacher of mindful living classes.
Diane Powell became a student and practitioner of the Dharma after attending a Thich Nhat Hanh retreat in Key West in 1997. As a long-time member of the Florida Community of Mindfulness, she teaches workshops and classes on a variety of mindfulness topics, serves as a mentor to new members, presents regularly at FCM sanghas, and assists with organizing FCM’s Dharma programs. Before retiring, Diane was a faculty member in Child and Family Studies at the University of South Florida, where her work focused on research, training, program development and policy analysis in early childhood development and family support.
Lee Purser has been meditating for over 25 years. She attended teachings by the Dalai Lama in the USA and in Dharamsala, India for 12 years, and participated in a 3 summer training with Pema Chodron. Lee has taught meditation and Buddhism for over 10 years In the USA and India. She is certified to teach Cultivating Emotional Balance (CEB) and was a teacher and on the Board of Insight Community of the Desert in Palm Springs, CA. She is a teacher for Meditation in Recovery at Florida Community of Mindfulness, where she is currently a member. Lee is a retired PhD in Psychology.
Andrew Rock has been a member of FCM and a student of Fred Eppsteiner since 2004. He was ordained into the Order of Interbeing by Thich Nhat Hanh in 2011. Andrew has served on the FCM Board, and as a bellmaster, presenter and Head of Meditation Hall in FCM’s Tampa Practice Center, and as a mentor and small group leader in FCM intensives. He has led workshops for FCM’s Mindfulness Institute on mindful consumption, engaged Buddhism and mindfulness for activists, and is a founder of the Buddhist Climate Action Network.
Beth Schroeder is long time dharma practitioner, artist, and teacher. She recently retired from coordinating the Naples Healthcare Systems Arts in Healing program, having worked for twelve years developing and implementing activities using art to help people relieve the difficulties of being ill. She now teaches “Creating Art in Mindfulness” and is the author of Arts in Healing: An arts and crafts manual for volunteers helping people with a health crisis, which is pending publication.
Charles Stewart, LMHC, retired from Stewart Marchman Act Corporation, a not-for-profit substance abuse, mental health treatment agency where he served as Vice President of Clinical Services for 20 years. During this time, Charles had experience working with Florida Drug Court. Before that, Charles held positions of Clinical Supervision as well as counselor with adults, adolescents, and families at outpatient mental health centers in Oregon and Florida. Charles has practiced mindfulness in his daily life and at work since 1997. In 2001, he began teaching mindfulness practices to therapists and clients.
Darlene Stewart, LMHC, retired as Vice President of Clinical Services for Children’s Advocacy Center of Volusia & Flagler Counties, where she worked for 16 years supervising clinical trauma services to child victims and families of abuse and neglect. Before that, Darlene worked as Clinical Supervisor and Mental Health Counselor providing direct serves to clients in outpatient mental health centers in Oregon and Florida, working with children & families, alcohol/drug treatment and general mental health issues. Darlene has practiced mindfulness in her daily life and at work since 1997.
Marilyn Warlick has been practicing mindfulness meditation since 1994. Through the Tibetan Tradition, she completed Training in End of Life Care for Health Care Professionals in 2004 with Rigpa Organization teachings based on the Tibetan Book of End of Life. She continues work within the Veterans' Affairs Medical Center in various programs including Substance Abuse Programs, Geropsychiatry inpatient facility, Eldercare Clinic and the Coordinator for the Hospice and Palliative Care Program. She currently works with the Veterans’ Homeless Program in the Tampa Area.
Maria Winkler, MSc, has been studying and practicing mindfulness for over 20 years. Maria applies in her teachings a multi-disciplinary approach that focuses on wellness through mental training, mindful physical movement such as yoga, and nutrition. Maria owns a yoga/wellness studio in the Boston area. She is actively engaged in supporting and building a center for integrative health care at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, a Harvard Medical School teaching hospital in Boston. Maria is a retired educator who has studied and traveled throughout the world.