Alex Brunel is the Research Coordinator for the MSC-Pain program and provides research support for MINDFUL-PC. A Wellesley graduate, Alex was a Gestalt therapist in England before returning to the USA in 2016. After her postgraduate degree in Directing and Movement Psychology from the Drama Centre (London,) she studied yoga and meditation, earning her living teaching and performing. On leaving London she found a niche providing social and commercial Qualitative research for public and private bodies across the UK, Europe and Asia, and in her spare time, renovated houses including a 17th century thatched cottage in an English village and a garden flat in Edinburgh. She loves growing things, music, cycling and her family and doesn't have much time for anything else.
Michael Datko, Ph.D., is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Center for Mindfulness and Compassion, and has a dual appointment at the MGH Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging. Mike conducts functional MRI scans to investigate changes that take place in the brain as participants learn to practice mindfulness and meditation. Mike earned a B.S. in Biopsychology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and earned a Ph.D. in Cognitive Science at the University of California, San Diego. For his dissertation he used functional MRI, electroencephalography, and magnetoencephalography to study the development of functional and structural brain organization in children and adolescents with autism, as well as how neurofeedback training affects brain networks and behaviors related to social imitation in children with autism. In his first postdoctoral position he studied the development of functional brain networks in toddlers with an early diagnosis of autism. As a Postdoctoral Associate at the University of Massachusetts Medical School's Center for Mindfulness, he used fMRI to understand how mindfulness training affects the brains of individuals attempting to quit cigarettes. While not working to collect and analyze neuroimaging data, Mike can be found biking or walking around the city, making music or other creative endeavors, and sharing good food with good company.
Audrey Evers is an Undergraduate Fellow on the Research Track at CHA’s Center for Mindfulness and Compassion, supporting the MINDFUL-PC program. She is a senior at Tufts University, double majoring in Psychology and Community Health. Audrey was first introduced to meditation and mindfulness through her yoga practice and quickly incorporated it into her everyday life. For her senior thesis at Tufts, Audrey is running a 4-week mindfulness based training program for student athletes. She is grateful and excited for the opportunity to be a part of the research being done at CMC and is thrilled to continue learning about mindfulness. In the future, she hopes to explore clinical psychology and a potential career in therapy.
Richa Gawande, PhD is the Program and Data Manager for MINDFUL-PC: Integrating Mindfulness into Primary Care at the CHA Center for Mindfulness and Compassion. She is passionate about mindfulness practice and teaching, and making mindfulness accessible to underserved populations. She is excited to be integrating mindfulness into the heart of medical care and researching the effects of mindfulness on patient and provider health. She has a background in tuberculosis biology and public health and is interested in the intersection of mental and physical health. She hopes to bring passion and compassion to mindfulness research and teaching as part of the team at the CHA Center for Mindfulness and Compassion.
Nicole Jeter is a Graduate Fellow on the Community Health Track at CHA's Center for Mindfulness and Compassion this Fall. She is currently pursuing a Masters of Public Health in Community Assessment, Program Design, Implementation and Evaluation at Boston University. Nicole studied Sociology and Chicano Studies at UC Davis. She enjoyed teaching MyPlate nutrition education to youth as well as promoting healthy eating and active living to the community. Nicole is an AmeriCorps VISTA Alumni. She is looking forward to learning about the impact mindfulness and compassion practices has on individuals of all ages.
Bridget (Bridge) Kiley is the Center Coordinator, managing events, programs and overall center operations, as well as supporting qualitative research for the Mindful-PC program. Bridge comes to CMC with experience working as a webmaster for Copper Beech Institute, a mindfulness and contemplative-based retreat center in her hometown of West Hartford, CT and having participated in the Penn Medicine Program for Mindfulness and Mindful Schools training. Most recently, she lived and worked in Athens, Greece through a Fulbright Grant, where she was a member of Wake Up Athens. Energized by the power of community, mental health care, healing practices, anti-oppression work and the heartful community at CMC and Cambridge Health Alliance, Bridge is grateful for the opportunity to grow through her experiences in this role. Bridge earned her Bachelor's in Criminal Justice & Sociology and Master of Science in Counseling from Villanova University. She has conducted qualitative research looking at the implementation of mindfulness-based programs in K-12 schools.
Eunmi (Jina) Kim is a Research Fellow at CMC, and a research scientist of the Heart-Smile Research Institute in South Korea. Prior to working at CMC, she worked with Catherine E. Kerr at Brown University. During her PhD thesis on mind-body medicine at the Seoul University of Buddhism, she worked as a visiting scholar at the Data Center for Korean EEG at Seoul National University. She completed her undergraduate studies at KAIST in Korea, where also got her Masters in Chemistry and IT Management. She worked as a researcher at LG Chem Research Park, and Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute. Trained in yoga in India and meditation in Burma, she is now a qualified MBSR (Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction) teacher, and a teacher-in-training of MSC (Mindful Self-Compassion). She has been involved in bringing Heart-Smile Training and Research to CMC and its community.
Lisa Kim, directs communications and community engagement for the CHA Center for Mindfulness and Compassion. Lisa is committed to personal development and well-being and is on a path of personal inquiry about what it means to be well. Lisa has lived and traveled abroad and brings heart and commitment to connection to her role.
Lisa is a certified yoga instructor and earned a certificate on health and nutrition from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN). Prior to joining the Center, Lisa was most recently Director of Programs and Engagement for the Society for Organizational Learning (SoL), Director of Eastern Region for the National Teen Leadership Program(NTLP), and an English Instructor at Sungkyunkwan University in South Korea. She also worked in community relations at WGBH and conference coordination and circulation management at Pegasus Communications, Inc.
Lisa earned her Master's in English with a concentration in creative writing. She is deeply inspired by the work of CMC and is excited to be part of such a committed, heartful team. Lisa spends much of her free time out in nature - swimming, running, hiking…
Angela Lozada is the MINDFUL-PC Referral Coordinator. Angela first joined CMC as research assistant for the MINDFUL-PC clinical research program in 2015, after graduating from Lesley University where she received her B.S. in Art Therapy, with concentrations in Cognitive Neuroscience and Mathematics.
After one year of expanded growth in the MINDFUL-PC program, she currently coordinates the recruitment and enrollment process. Witnessing herself the transformative experience mindfulness meditation offers, she is compassionate about providing therapeutic space, patient advocacy, and contributing to evidence-based research. During her free time she enjoys creating process orientated artwork.
Jessica (Jessi) Somogie is a part of the research and outreach team at the CHA Center for Mindfulness and Compassion. Jessica studied Secondary Education and English with concentrations in Spanish and Creative Writing during her undergraduate at the College of Charleston. Teaching adolescents and working closely with children illuminated Jessica’s passion to contribute further to the field of mental health and psychology. Jessica’s interests lie in child advocacy, mental health, neuroscience, and bioethics. Mindfulness continues to be a transformative practice in Jessica’s life. As Jessica continues her education and involvement with the non-profit Adolescent Wellness, she is grateful to have the opportunity to join CMC’s community of Mindfulness and Compassion!
My Ngoc To is the Research Coordinator for the MINDFUL-PC Program at the CHA Center for Mindfulness and Compassion. She studied Cognitive Neuroscience and Evolutionary Psychology during her undergraduate at Harvard. Having benefited from her own personal practice and worked with many diverse populations, My Ngoc's research interests center around cultural and integrative psychiatry. As a published author and visual artist, My Ngoc is also passionate about narrative medicine. She is both thrilled and grateful for this opportunity to join the CMC in its mission to integrate mindfulness and compassion into healthcare.
Claribel Wu is a CMC Resident Illustrator, currently studying English and Modern Culture & Media at Brown University. She's interested in the role of storytelling, both interpersonally and introspectively, as it relates to mindfulness practice and issues of race and society. Claribel spent a summer as the Communications Intern at Center for Mindful Learning, a monastic academy, where she saw the potential for meditation and mindfulness to be a radical force in disrupting old habits and narratives. She's committed to approaching this work with curiosity, critical awareness, and compassion. Claribel feels grateful for and inspired by this opportunity to co-create with the CMC community.
Former Team Members:
Héctor Morillo collaborated with CHA Center for Mindfulness and Compassion, adapting the MTPC training manual in to Spanish, as well as offering a Mindful Eating Course in Spanish. Héctor is a researcher finishing his Doctoral Thesis in Mindfulness Eating, has developed a program for the Primary care system and published several articles on Mindfulness. He co-authored “Mindful Eating, el sabor de la atención” (2017). Héctor holds a degree in Psychology from the University of the Basque Country, Spain and Master's Degree in General Health Psychology from the University of Seville. He is a teacher in the Master of Mindfulness program at the University of Zaragoza and is passionate about food and Mindfulness. He is a certified instructor of MB-EAT and Mindful Eating-Conscious Living (ME-CL).
Alyssa Craparotta is an Undergraduate Fellow on the Research Track at CHA’s Center for Mindfulness and Compassion, supporting the MINDFUL-PC program from 2017-2018. She is currently double majoring in Neuroscience and Philosophy in her third year at Boston College. Alyssa was first introduced to meditation and mindfulness through her yoga practice and teaching experience. After taking classes in psychology and neuroscience, she was drawn to empirical research exploring the effects of these practices. She is incredibly grateful for the opportunity to be a part of the research being done at CMC and is excited to continue learning about the integration of mindfulness into primary care.
Tom Fatkin was an Undergraduate Fellow for the Research Track supporting the CMC MINDFUL-PC program from 2017-2018. He graduated from Tufts University with a double major in Psychology and Chinese. Although he currently lives in the US, Tom is originally from Melbourne, Australia, and has also spent time in the UK. Despite the fact that he was only exposed to mindfulness a few years ago, he has quickly incorporated it into his life, and is excited to explore mindfulness and self compassion more at the center. In the future, he hopes to further pursue research into clinical psychology, and potentially a career in therapy.
Mecivir Keren Tersoo-Ivase was an is an Undergraduate Research Fellow at CHA’s Center for Mindfulness and Compassion, supporting the MINDFUL-PC program for 2017-2018. She is an international student from Nigeria at Lesley University, who intends to graduate in 2019 with a double major in Biology and Psychology. During her few years of study in the United States taking Psychology courses, Mecivir has become more aware and exposed to mindfulness and its role in the improvement and maintenance of the well-being of individuals. She is fascinated and drawn to research that studies various components of mindfulness and its effects on physical health. In the future, she hopes to go into the field of Medicine and biomedical research with the intent of being a Research-physician or surgeon. She considers the opportunity to be part of the CMC research team a privilege as she continues to explore mindfulness and incorporate it into her personal life as well as aiming academically and career-wise to bridge the gap between physical and mental health.
Palak Khanna was a Community Health Undergraduate fellow at CMC from 2017-2018, studying at Tufts University with a focus of studies on gender, conflict, and alliances in the region of South Asia in addition to a broader understanding of the 'health' of minority communities in the US. The desire to bring "mindfulness practice" in its multiplicity of forms to underrepresented communities of color is what draws Palak to CMC, and she is grateful for the supportive community of staff who share her desire. During her time here at the center thus far, Palak has been working to help pilot a study in primary care waiting rooms involving patients listening to audio mindfulness recordings. The vision as a center is to use the feedback received to understand if these recordings and the practice may be useful for them in the waiting room setting. Palak has additionally been working on charting the growth of compassion and self-compassion specific research and interventions to trace its history and consider the gaps that exist.
Tobie Kim was a Fall 2017 Undergraduate Fellow for the Community Health Track. She is currently majoring in Psychology with a minor in Medical Humanities at Boston College. She is new to mindfulness and has enjoyed learning and experiencing its effects in her daily life by both supporting and attending the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction course and other mindfulness groups at CMC. Tobie is interested in pursuing a career in clinical psychology or clinical social work.
Diana Restrepo was an Undergraduate Fellow for the Community Health Track, supporting the CMC MBSR and Mindful Eating Course in Spanish for Spring 2018. She is an undergraduate student at Lesley University, majoring in Psychology and pursuing a Holistic Health and Wellness Certificate. During her time at CMC she focused on establishing connections with the Latinx communities in the surrounding cities. Diana is very eager to continue to learn about mindfulness and how to make it more accessible to POC communities. She is grateful for the opportunity to aid CMC in offering mindfulness to all communities in the Boston area, and she has had a remarkable experience during her time at the center.
Ethan Simon was the Summer 2017 Undergraduate Fellows for Community Health Track supporting CMC programming and offerings. This past summer Ethan worked on creating the CMC recording studio and engineered, edited, and produced over thirteen hours of guided meditation audio recordings for the CMC community. Ethan also developed and co-taught a "Mindfulness Through the Senses" curriculum to engage CMC staff in an introduction to mindfulness. The intention of this event was to help CMC staff bring mindfulness into their everyday lives through the five sensory avenues. Ethan is currently an undergraduate student at Skidmore College as a double major in Psychology and Business & Management. Ethan is the manager of the music and cognition lab at Skidmore and also is in a band called Campo (Listen on Spotify/iTunes).
Wallis Slater is a recent graduate of Skidmore College where she studied Psychology. She is interested in well-being and emotion regulation, and how individuals can better process negative emotions. She recently finished writing her senior Thesis on self-distancing, a tool to help reduce the negative affect surrounding distressing experiences, and hopes to continue to expand on this research. Wallis has dabbled in mindfulness practices for a few years, and is excited to expand her practice. She is grateful for the opportunity to learn from and work with CMC this summer!