Team | Mentors
is in the here and now,
if only we open our senses to it.
Karen maintains a private practice in Orange County, California, working primarily with adults. She specializes in working with the dysregulated nervous system patterns underlying chronic pain and other syndromes. She collaborates extensively with mental health professionals, providing touch therapy for their clients with a history of early dysregulation. She also has a passion for supporting people who want to develop their capacity for healthy love and sexuality.
and the joy will burn out the pain.
Michelle Borok, LM CPM is a mentor with the Berkeley HEARTraining®. She is a California Licensed Homebirth Midwife, and holds a B.A. in Social Welfare from U.C. Berkeley. She has studied Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy, working with both adults and newborns. She is currently completing the San Francisco HEARTraining and the Organic Intelligence® OI Expert Master Class Program with Steve Hoskinson and Sean Feit Oakes.
Michelle has a special interest in Pre- and Perinatal Psychology and weaves its principles into her beloved midwifery practice. She has taught many classes and original workshops, including Female Sexuality at U.C. Berkeley, and Legacies of Medical Racism and Transgender Competency for Healthcare Providers at Maternidad La Luz Midwifery School. She has been a mindfulness and insight meditation student for the last 12 years, studying and meditating with some of the most extraordinary Buddhist teachers of our time.
Michelle co-parents her amazing goddaughter and finds parenting and communing with nature to be her most devotional and resourcing practices.
Berkley practices nervous system support in the Organic Intelligence® tradition and is an OI® Expert and Mentor.
Since then, alongside his private practice, he has played sax and percussion in funk bands, facilitated drum circles and samba bands in schools and the local community and currently plays in a New Orleans-style brass band. He lives with his wife and teenage daughters in the west of Ireland.
Andrew has a daily sitting practice which he regards as indispensable for both his personal well-being and his professional practice.
In his one-to-one and group work, Andrew draws upon a deep trust in the power of attuned presence, laughter and the embodied wisdom of the organism. There is an invitation for connection and coherence to arise as a precondition for the processing of discomfort and disregulation; a dance of attunement between persons and organisms.
Andrew feels deeply privileged and fortunate to be engaged in this work.
Additionally, Sarah is a life-long meditator and yogi and has been in private practice since 2012.
David began training with Steve Hoskinson in 2013. The models of Organic Intelligence® underpin much of David’s work. David is currently completing a Masters program at the Karuna University in the UK in Mindfulness Based Psychotherapeutic practice. David is also enrolled to study a masters in Mindfulness Based Psychotherapeutic Practice at the department of psychiatry at Oxford University, beginning October 2018.
David currently lives in Mallorca with his wife and two children, where he maintains a private practice. He continues to travel to Turkey where he co-directs a pioneering mindfulness clinic located within Turkey's American Hospital, which provides inpatient care, as well as an educational outreach program. David offers trainings in mindfulness skills for health care professionals in Turkey.
The exploration of community and connection continued through her work at The Southwest Forest Alliance and then at Northland Family Help Center, a place that offers services to victims of crime and also houses a domestic violence shelter. At Northland, she was part of the group that brought a deepened understanding of Trauma Informed Care to the organization, which meant creating an environment to support the staff in what was needed for their own expanded resiliency, which then created a safe and healthier container for the clients and residents.
Today, Robin is a student in John Yates’ (Upasaka Culadasa’s) meditation teacher training program and has been exploring how to restore physiological, spiritual, and psychological resiliency through the natural interweaving of Organic Intelligence® and meditation. Through this training and her time studying OI with Steve, Robin has been discovering the natural ways that OI’s understanding of going “beyond trauma” goes hand in hand with deep spiritual teachings and practice. Both teachings bring the understanding that joy is a part of the path to the deep spirituality and interconnection that is ours by nature.
Robin is also in a singing trio, where the expression of music and harmony reflects her curiosity of how different voices come together to form community and collective understandings.
Link to Robin's OI Blog Post
Eve’s practice began in 2001, and it includes training in various bodywork modalities and somatic approaches, is influenced and guided by the principles and teachings of Organic Intelligence®. She continues to remain curious, interested and inspired by her work.
She has been practicing Bikram Yoga since 2009. The mindfulness, focus, and discipline that practice offers have rippled through her studies and work. Additionally, she has studied and practiced various forms of seated and moving meditation which all influence her awareness, presence, and way of life.
Dana Duclo, EdS, MHS, is completing her third year of the OI HEARTraining® and is an OI Mentor in Tucson, AZ.
Dana is the founder of Inner Rhythm Consulting, LLC, where she teaches Heart Rhythm Meditation® and Organic Intelligence®--embodied approaches to trauma and stress resolution that help clients restore a sense of inner rhythm and connect to the innate wisdom, aliveness, and coherence within. Dana is passionate about helping people discover they can live vibrantly and easefully beyond the effects of stress and trauma, offering nervous system education and compassionate support to children, adolescents, and adults.
Dana holds an EdS degree in Educational Psychology and a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. She is a certified School Psychologist with over 20 years of experience in the education system as a psychologist, counselor, and educator. Dana is also a certified meditation teacher and faculty member at the Institute for Applied Meditation, where she has practiced and taught meditation for 12 years.
Chrysta’s professional background is born from one seed, and has grown into two complimentary plants. Motivated by social and environmental justice, Chrysta worked many years as an organizer with NGOs and small grass roots organizations. Her desire to help alleviate burn-out, PTSD, and build resiliency in her communities lead her to learn traditional healing modalities such as Western Herbalism, Acupuncture, Medical Massage, CranioSacral Therapy, and Permaculture. Organic Intelligence offers the integral piece in mind-body healing, by supporting the nervous system as it self- organizes and heals from the nervous system up.
In her moments of orienting toward pleasure, Chrysta can be found grooving to drumbeats, sitting and watching the plants in her garden grow, balancing on one leg at way-too-hot-for-the-desert yoga, and climbing a rock while listening to trickling water in the canyon.
and wisdom another
Boaz has studied business, economics, buddhism and psychology and trained as a therapist in various traditions including systemics, psychosomatics, psychoanalytics and the contemplative sciences. He has been involved in various humanitarian and development projects in conflict-affected regions (Afghanistan, Myanmar) as a bio-psychosocial trainer.
Boaz currently works at a private practice in Geneva, trains groups at NGOs (activists, community leaders) and organizations (executives, lawyers) in empowerment and resiliency, and teaches the Organic Intelligence HEARTraining® in Turkey and co-teaches the HEARTraining in Switzerland with OI Founder Steve Hoskinson.
Boaz is a visiting professor for the University of Trinity College Dublin MBA programs, and conducts mindfulness and compassion research at the National Research Center for Affective Sciences at the University of Geneva.
I only attempt to provide
the conditions in which they can learn.
This is how an Organic Intelligence session feels. Is it time to move beyond trauma, and let something greater unfold from within you?
Gloria is founder of Eight Elements West, an Institute for Somatic Education and Integrative Wellness. Sessions incorporate integrative body-based modalities like visceral manipulation to integrate emotion, voice and touch. Cransiosacral therapy addresses restrictions in cranial nerves, brain, and spine. Gloria’s 35-year background also includes a degree in Kinesiology/Nutrition, hypnotherapy, reiki, and mindfulness-based somatic practices of Iyengar yoga/pranayama, and Nia (blends tai chi, tae kwon do, aikido, modern dance, Duncan, jazz, Alexander, Feldenkrais, yoga). Sensation, emotion, and cognition woven together in OI support biological coherence, relieving physical and emotional symptoms.
You are the entire ocean in a drop.
Seek the wisdom that will untie your knot.
Seek the path that demands your whole being.
In addition to her practice, Monika enjoys witnessing how this intrinsic impulse shows up in her children, and how they explore the world and their interconnectedness through play and experimentation. In her own activities of daily mindfulness, strength training, and dance, she is continuously curious about the fractal nature of the universe and how it becomes embodied in our daily lives.
Maggie Horton-Brande is an Organic Intelligence® and Somatic Experiencing® Practitioner. Maggies sees clients in private practice in San Francisco, and coordinate the SF Bay Area Human Empowerment and Resiliency Training.
Mentoring students through the deeply personal and professional process of learning and integrating OI's principles is one of Maggie's primary joys in life. Since 2008, her professional background is in bodywork and Massage Therapy. Maggie has also practiced Deep Tissue Therapy, Shiatsu, Acupressure and Medical Qigong in California.
Currently, she is in ministerial training in the Lohan Order of Buddhism with Reverend Fa Jun Shakya. Maggie's personal interests include the study and practice of Chinese and Indo-Tibetan Buddhism, Daoism and Qigong, social justice, Nonviolent Communication, the art of the conscious partnership, music and the outdoors. She is a passionate LGBTQI ally and honors all gender identities. Maggie aims to develop compassion, wisdom, and skillfulness.
Bram has completed yoga teacher trainings in multiple traditions, tantra and conscious relationship coaching with David Deida, studied and practiced Shipibo Shamanism in Peru, and was a singer and fire-tender in the Native American Church for 4 years. He is also a music and technology nerd and runs a small recording studio in Encinitas, CA.
Bram brings his diverse background to offer compassionate support to people from many walks of life. He loves working with creative individuals, young adults, and those who are working towards achieving their goals and realizing their dreams.
Kevin is passionate about Organic Intelligence® and Craniosacral Therapy -- independently and in concert with each other -- and the many benefits these subtle yet powerful modalities offer in support of health and well-being. He is deeply grateful to be doing this work, and to his clients, teachers, and mentors. Using techniques and practices from both the Biomechanical and the Biodynamic approaches to Craniosacral Therapy, Kevin’s treatments include gentle work with structural alignment, the ebb and flow of cerebral spinal fluid, the movement of muscles and connective tissue, and restoring balance to the fundamental fascial structures of the body. Craniosacral sessions can be deeply grounding, and offer physical unwinding, emotional release, and improved energetic flow. In Nervous System Regulation sessions, Kevin supports an understanding of the nervous system state, and shepherds observable physio-emotional states using techniques from the Organic Intelligence® protocol (which includes elements from the wisdom of mindfulness and is based on the science of self-organization).
In this way, healing happens from the nervous system up and leads to a more vibrant life in the present moment.
After 10 years of working as a Psychotherapist with the severely mentally ill in a variety of settings she was introduced to Somatic Experiencing® during a workshop. Almost immediately she sensed significant change in her system and entered the SE™ training.
Another 10 years later, having established a private practice based on somatic approaches, Organic Intelligence invites further expansion into her relationship with herself, her work and the world.
Maggie is a mother, a grandmother and a dual citizen of the United States and Ireland. Her life — much of it lived abroad — has been an effort to bridge different cultures and eras to find her ground amidst breathtaking change. While the kind of community and connection she knew as a child in a rural Irish hinterland no longer exists, she has found a sense of connection and grounding within herself, through the deep experience of her own body.
Her work aims to open this capacity for others who navigate their own losses and longings, to help bring them home to themselves in the natural world of their own physiology.
graceful in the low.
Helma has completed a program in Relational Somatic Psychotherapy, combining knowledge of the body and relational processes as valuable supports in the therapeutic process. Helma has also trained in Integrative Energy Therapy, a gentle and non-invasive form of connecting with one’s internal experience at an energetic level. To complement her therapeutic work, Helma practices Aikido, a Japanese self-defence system, in which she holds a fourth-degree black belt.
Ceci McDonnell, LISW, MSSA, SEP, OIX is a Mentor at Organic Intelligence. She holds a Masters Degree in Social Work from Case Western University in Cleveland Ohio, where she teaches as an Adjunct Faculty member.
For the last thirty years she has worked in State Psychiatric Hospitals, Residential Treatment Centers for children age 4-13 and their families. She has offered in-home services and worked extensively with adolescents and women. She has had the privilege to facilitate Women’s Circles internationally exploring the Divine Feminine.
Her Masters Program was steeped in Systems Theory, applied at both the Micro and Macro level and anchored as well in attachment and developmental theory. Practicing OI is returning home! After graduate school, she has immersed herself in archetypal psychology which deeply resonates with her maternal lineage of Irish storytellers and activists.
Her work as an OI Mentor integrates her strengths and passion, Systemic strategic analysis and interventions embedded in working with the inherent health and rhythm of developing nervous systems and supporting clients heartfelt connections, life purpose, and dreams!
Ceci is committed to the ongoing discovery and partnering within our community to integrate OI into all aspects of Social Justice. She currently works as a Mitigation Specialist on behalf of defendants charged with crimes were if found guilty the could receive the death penalty.
His practice and training includes completion of a 4-year Buddhist meditation teacher training through Jack Kornfield and Spirit Rock Meditation Center; completion of the 3-year advanced training in Somatic Experiencing; continued mentorship with Steve Hoskinson and the Organic Intelligence approach to trauma healing; completion of a 750-hour massage training and licensure as a massage practitioner; completion of 3 yoga teacher trainings and 8 years of teaching yoga asan in a studio environment; 2 years of study of Craniosacral therapy through the Milne Institute; over 10 years of practice and study of Buddhist meditation, including over 50 silent meditation retreats and practice in Thailand, Burma, and India.
People typically come to see Brent for a somatic approach when they are feeling sad, anxious, overwhelmed, angry, confused; when they have recurring symptoms that confuse other providers (easily "triggered", digestive issues, panic attacks, auto-immune issues); because they are having problems with their close relationships or have issues with boundaries; because there is a specific issue they are coping with; because their identity is somehow in flux; because they are seeking growth and increased wellness; or simply because they feel something is "missing" and desire deeper meaning in their lives.
On a more personal note, Brent enjoys saunas and cold plunges, long philosophical conversations, beaches, nature, coffee, chocolate, music, sailing, good books, and unplanned international adventures.
Mark has extensive training in the nervous system process, movement, structural integration, and group work. Mark has experience bringing the principles of Organic Intelligence into use at a residential substance abuse treatment center; working with individuals and groups. In addition to in-person and online sessions, Mark consults on several online nervous system class platforms.
Mark is grateful to be part of the mentoring team in the current San Diego HEARTraining. Mark feels love and joy for all of those who are currently a part of the San Diego training; teachers, mentors, OI staff members, and students.
In addition to applying OI to daily life, Nathan participates in sitting practices of buddhist-inspired loving-kindness and mindfulness of the breath and body, as well as the Eastern Orthodox-inspired Jesus Prayer.
These three are your greatest treasures.
Simple in actions and thoughts,
you return to the source of being.
Patient with both friends and enemies,
you accord with the way things are.
Compassionate toward yourself,
you reconcile all beings in the world.
Charlie has recently begun using the OI principles to coach executives on how to create "flow" within their personal lives, leadership style, and organization or business.
Charlie is also a student of the Wisdom and Perennial teachings within the Christian tradition. He has seen a Spiritual Director for the last 7 years and he and his wife Heather attend an annual week long retreat focusing on centering prayer and other wisdom practices.
any challenge over time.
Heather Ruce is a spiritual director, accompanying people as they learn to live in the present moment and attempt to deepen their awareness of and relationship with the Sacred. She sees nervous system coherence as a crucial component of becoming a more fully alive, conscious, connected being. The Organic Intelligence® model resonates deeply for her by providing the framework to support clients’ naturally occurring biological coherence. As this coherence increases, an opening is created to participate in a much larger coherence, beyond the individual, and into the collective.
Heather lives in San Diego with her husband Charlie. She works out of her home and with clients who live out of the area via Zoom. She has a Masters in Marriage and Family Therapy and is a student of the Wisdom stream (especially as taught by St. Benedict and G.I. Gurdjieff), facilitating Centering Prayer and Meditation groups as well as Wisdom practice circles. She has a deep love for the earth and animals having cared for many different exotic species.
“Please come home. Please come home. Find the place where your feet know where to walk and follow your own trail home. Please come home. Please come home into your own body, your own vessel, your own earth. Please come home into each and every cell, and fully into the space that surrounds you.”
In addition being a continuity Assistant Trainer for the Boston Feldenkrais Training Program, and maintaining a private practice, Tiffany teaches and organizes classes and workshops in Boston, MA and online. She’s the creator of Movement & Creativity Library, an online resource/community with 150+ Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement® lessons and guided practices to support nervous system regulation and awaken creativity.
Tiffany is the editor and illustrator of Feldenkrais Illustrated: The Art of Learning, a visual guide to the philosophy and writings of Moshe Feldenkrais. Her drawings have been published in Tikkun magazine, Turning Wheel, and the Feldenkrais Journal.
Tiffany is a mentor in the San Diego OI HEARTraining®.
A leading edge in her own growth is in using what she has learned from SE practitioners of color to develop self-awareness and resilience as a white ally. She is committed to making the wonderful training and practices of SE and OI more available to all those who wish to access it but aren’t privileged with the time, money or support to do so.
In the past three years, Rachel has also returned to her practice of ki-aikido with tremendous excitement: she finds that the integration of this embodied spiritual practice and meditation with understandings gained from OI is leading her down unforeseen spiritual paths.
When she’s not working, she snatches time for singing and reading, and indulge her domestic self in cooking, garden, and knitting. She’s a cat person.
Martin has worked with the Feldenkrais Method® in personal sessions through touch (Functional Integration®) and with groups (Awareness through Movement®), while deepening his understanding through NLP, Ericksonian hypnosis, focusing, Somatic Experiencing®, and Organic Intelligence.
Through the 3-year Embodied Life Mentorship Program with Russell Delman, a combination of Feldenkrais, Focusing, Meditation and Nonviolent Communication, he deepened his experience in Mindfulness and Compassion.
Through Aikido he found SEITAI Noguchi, a Japanese Method to support the body’s inherent energies and impulses for self-healing. He teaches SEITAI Groups in his DOJO and supports his teacher Unsho Sensei to bring more awareness to this work in Europe.
Martin’s hobbies are aquarelle painting and hiking.
Committed to the OI work, Martin mentors students in the Istanbul HEARTraining in Turkey and promotes and coordinates the first HEARTraining in Switzerland, which will take place in his new SHINGENKI DOJO in Arlesheim, close to Basel.
Connections are cut and parts are created.
Systemic thinking means:
Parts get clarified and connections are created.
Next stop, was the Navajo Nation where one of his tasks was to integrate traditional healing and western methods. This brought Charles’s childhood among the tribes of Oklahoma and his earlier career as a filmmaker to the fore. Much of the work documented cultural retention and spiritual practices.
He added EMDR to his toolbox and then Somatic Experiencing® with Steve Hoskinson and a seamless shift to Organic Intelligence® in 2017. In his private practice, he used Supportive Touch extensively. In addition to his therapy work, Charles is a singer/songwriter performing with his wife and a group of talented friends.
“Any day my appreciation exceeds my expectations is a good day”
because it only fits into that story and defies the logic of separation.
This belief, coupled with the teachings of Organic Intelligence®, has meant bearing witness to awe-inspiring transformations in children and their families. Helpful tools along the way include lots of play, sensory awareness, dialogue and narrative-creation, and mindfulness.
Her two greatest teachers are her children, two boys under the age of five. They’ve taught her more about herself than she could ever hope to teach them — not to mention they’re experts in living playfully, with ease, and in the moment! Growing a personal practice of mindfulness meditation, one of Organic Intelligence’s guiding principles, has meant engaging with herself, other humans, and the world-at-large in a deeper and more meaningful way.
yet everything is accomplished.
Randy began practicing traditional Okinawan martial arts at age 7 and has continued this exploration throughout his life, currently focusing on Russian Systema and Jeet Kune Do. Martial arts provided an early introduction to mindfulness practices, which developed over time by integrating a variety of movement, yoga, meditation, and bodywork perspectives.
Randy practices integrative bodywork and Organic Intelligence with an intention to support healing, liberation, and recognition of wholeness in clients. He desires to deepen the connection with ancestors and the more-than-human world, and acknowledges all beings’ birthright to realize their full potential.
He believes the most enduring transformations in a human life come from the conscious exploration through one's body, sexuality, emotions, mind and spirit, especially in relationship with others. To this end, Heath welcomes all themes when working with people. He integrates Somatic Experiencing® and Organic Intelligence® in a variety of ways in the personal development work with clients. He has over 20 year’s experience supporting positive changes in his clients’ lives.
Book a session or group work with Heath in Cologne, Germany or an individual Skype session. Visit the mentor list in your OI Virtual Classroom for contact info.
English, Spanish and German spoken.
when you humbly accept your human limitations,
your nobility shines through.