Board meetings are typically held at 5:30 pm on the 3rd Thursday of every month. Please contact us if you would like to attend and/or add something to the agenda.
Back row (left to right): Brian Hoffman (president), Jean Sheehan (vice-president), John Fraser, Sunita Gangopadhyay, Jim Winkels, Lori Beron (secretary)
Front row (left to right): Swami Radha Bharati, Skip Dykoski
Not in Photo: Georgeann Bianchi (treasurer)
Brian Hoffman (President)
Brian began teaching Hatha and combined Yoga classes at the Mediation Center thirty years ago following initiation into the Himalayan Tradition by Swami Veda. Hatha and Meditation training began in 1978 through the gifts of several accomplished Yoga teachers and resulted in study at the Himalayan Institute in Honesdale PA. Additional learning in the systems of Tai Chi, Healing Energy, and Martial Arts provided further understanding into mind-breath-body understanding. As a graduate from the University of Minnesota, Brian continues work in public service management in the metropolitan area, providing opportunity for an occasional Yoga class in the City Council Chambers or around a conference table.
Jean Sheehan (Vice-President)
Jean has been a member and initiate of the Meditation Center since 1971. Jean’s commitment has always been to enjoy, practice, and pass on the wisdom of the Himalayan Tradition. Our authentic and time tested tradition creates many opportunities to extend our message into the community. Jean’s interests lie in Center programming, fund- raising, and social outreach. She has spent her career as a sales rep in the training and publishing industry, with an emphasis on socially responsible business practices. Jean has three wonderful kids who have had the benefit of growing up in the tradition too. Jean loves this place and Iooks forward to celebrating our 50th anniversary with everyone!
Lori Beron (Secretary)
Lori is an initiate and certified teacher through the Himalayan Yoga Tradition as well as a Certified Holistic Nurse, she has an MA in Holistic Health Studies and is employed as an RN on a surgical oncology unit at the University of Minnesota Health.
Georgeann Bianchi (Treasurer)
Georgeann was initiated in 2003. After leaving the corporate world she was invited to work in the Center’s office. She enjoyed coordinating programs and getting to know the community for five years. She continues to help out as needed, a small token of appreciation for all the gifts bestowed by the Tradition and its wonderful teachers.
Skip has been a continuous member of The Meditation Center since 1973 and has been on the board for the majority of those years. He has taught courses at The Meditation Center on “Science (physics degree) and Yoga” and “Yoga and Aikido” (“The way of harmony with the forces of nature”.)
Sunita has been associated with the meditation center since 2006, and was initiated in the tradition in 2011. Native of India, Sunita moved to the US in 1987 for graduate studies (Physics). She has had a keen interest in spirituality, meditation and yoga for many years. Teachings of the Himalayan Tradition as well as Sunday Satsang with Michael Smith and Jim Nelson have immensely helped deepen her practice and navigate through busy home and work life. Whenever she gets an opportunity, she visits the SRSG Ashram at Rishikesh, India. One of her passions is to take the learning of the tradition to a wider part of the community as well as be of greater service to the center for years ahead. Sunita is married and has two children. She is an Executive in Research and Development department of Seagate Technology.
John David Wilson
John has attempted to meditate since childhood. He found formal training by forming a Meditation class in the Free University of Minnesota in 1966. When Dr. Usharbudh Arya arrived a year later, Dr. Arya became the teacher for the group, which blossomed. John earned BA, BS, and MEd degrees from the University. He was initiated by Swami Rama in April 1970 and continued to study meditation with Dr. Arya until 1973 when he moved to southern MN to teach and raise his family. John returned to the Twin Cities in 2003 and has studied and taught classes in Poetry and Mysticism at the Meditation Center. He is married and has four grown children, 15 grandchildren ,and 2 great-grandchildren. He is currently offering energies and attention to the Meditation Center and it’s members.
Jim first became involved with The Meditation Center in the mid 1970’s when he was initiated by Jim Young, Chris Young’s father. During that time, Jim took numerous classes in yoga, meditation, and philosophy, and heard Swami Veda ( then Dr. Arya ) lecture many times. Later, in 1985, he went to the Himalayan Institute ashram in Honesdale, PA, where he met Swami Rama, which was a turning point in Jim’s life. Jim has traveled to India twice, the most recent time, in 2009, when he stayed at Swami Rama Sadhaka Grama ashram for approximately 6 weeks. Jim has continued to take many classes and workshops The Center has to offer ( one of his favorite things to do ) as well as attend the Thursday night meditation and lecture program whenever he can. Jim is on the Building Committee at The Center headed by Emilio Bettaglio. Presently, he has been attending Michael Smith’s Sunday Sadhana classes. Over the years, Jim has found The Meditation Center to be one of the greatest guiding forces in his life and he is so grateful for having found it.