Meet The Faculty

Melissa Moore PhD., Founder Of Karuna Training

Melissa Moore Ph.D. , has stewarded Karuna Training in North America since 2014 and co-founded Karuna Training in Europe in 1996. Melissa has her MA in Contemplative Psychotherapy from Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado, and her Ph.D. in Psychological Anthropology from the California Institute of Integral Studies.

Melissa has been a Vajrayana Buddhism and Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche student since 1979. She was the founding Director of the Felton Institute for Research and Training in San Francisco (2006–2016). She has been involved in community-based research for the most marginalized populations in California, trained front-line providers in mental health in evidence-based practices, and then researched the outcomes.

Melissa is the Executive Director of Karuna Training and a lead faculty. She has taught Karuna Training in nine countries and in four states in the U.S. She lives in Denver with her cat and her husband.

Melissa recently published The Diamonds Within Us: Uncovering Brilliant Sanity Through Contemplative Psychology; find out more about the book

Sandra Ladley, MA

Sandra Ladley, MA, is a core Karuna Training faculty member. She partnered with Melissa Moore to bring Karuna Training to North America. Sandra received her MA in Contemplative Psychology from Naropa University.

She is a long-time Buddhist practitioner and teacher, an interdisciplinary artist and activist, and a life-long student. Sandra teaches Buddhist, Contemplative Psychology and Creative Arts programs internationally. She draws on a breadth of experience as a teacher, counselor, and manager in business, mental health and creative arts settings to bring vibrancy and engagement to her teaching.

Terry Jaworski

Terry Jaworski, MA, LMHC graduated from Naropa University in 1983 with a degree in
Contemplative Psychology. She worked in Community Mental Health for 25 years as a clinician and supervisor.

Terry is now in private practice in Seattle, WA and specializes in mindfulness-based cognitive behavioral therapy. She has practiced meditation for 40 years, has been a meditation instructor for 25 years, and is excited to be part of the Karuna Training Faculty

Miriam Hall

Miriam Hall is a cisgender queer white woman who is the lead teacher at Herspiral Contemplative Arts
( and co-director of Nalanda Miksang Contemplative Photography (, as well as a senior teacher of Nalanda Miksang.

She is a meditation instructor, an authorized Maitri Space Awareness teacher, and a creativity coach. Her work focuses on the intersection of compassion and perception and unapologetically regards all liberation as inherently tied to social justice. She was a member of the first North American cohort of Karuna Training, both basic and graduate, and has been on faculty since 2017.

Luchy Lopez

Luchy López lives in Madrid, Spain and she’s the mother of three grown women. With a performing arts background both academic and professional, and after a healing journey from cancer (1997) – she committed to sharing how theater, dance, color, a relationship with space, and unseen guides around us helped her heal. In 2006 she created A Corazón abierto (ACa) a ritualistic experience of self inquiry and healing of the bonds with our relatives and vibrant space, through free dance/movement and mind-body imagining. ACa is performed with long flowing skirts that she called faldAlas. FaldAlas is a project to cultivate and spread compassion.

Luchy has been a Buddhist practitioner started in 1991. She completed the graduate program of Karuna Training in Spain in 2017. Karuna brought her into a new meaning of the word commitment and gave her work a new dimension including the power of listening/speaking from the heart – along with the wisdom of the Five Buddha families. Luchy learned Alba Emoting from Andrea Bañuelos, a direct student of Susana Bloch, the creatrice of this scientific system. She was given permission to teach and share the work (2019).

Kathryn Rile

Kathryn Rile has been a practitioner of meditation for close to 20 years and teaches meditation in a Buddhist community. She was instrumental in bringing Karuna Training to North America and is a graduate of the first Karuna Training cohort in 2014 as well as the Maitri Space Awareness Teacher’s Training at Naropa University.

Kathryn works professionally doing design and communications for small businesses and nonprofits. She is a ceramic artist, the mother of two, and lives in Western Marin County.

Carolyn Sykes

Carolyn Sykes has been practicing and studying meditation since 1999. She is a meditation instructor and teaches contemplative Buddhist classes and Dharma Art. Carolyn has a love for teaching and undertook studies in Karuna Training to deepen and strengthen her skills. She studied Karuna Training from 2016 – 2019, graduating from both the basic training and the graduate advanced programs. She is currently on the US faculty for Karuna Training.

Carolyn is a musician with an MFA in Harp Performance, and has a teaching and performing studio Pacific Harps. She performs free-lance in orchestras, as a soloist on concert stages, for film and television recording and for special events both locally and abroad. Originally from Australia, Carolyn now lives in Los Angeles.

Emma Bunnell

Emma (they/she) is a queer, neurodivergent, and non-binary individual based in San Diego, Ca. They have been practicing meditation for nearly 10 years and currently work as a Director of Software Implementation in Solana Beach. Emma began leading meditation groups in 2018 and recently completed the Karuna Training Graduate Program in May 2023.

Karuna Training, and other mindfulness based contemplative practices, have played a vital role in Emma's personal and professional development and have provided them with tools and methodologies for skillfully navigating these particularly trying and polarizing times. They have found the teachings on the mandala principle, Buddha families, and elements together have offered a practical framework for uncovering their own inner knowing and inherent brilliance. 

Emma aspires to embody the Karuna principles of deep listening, exchange, and intrinsic health in her leadership and teaching styles to encourage and support a kinder, more inclusive, human-centric workplace and society. When Emma isn't at work or practicing meditation, you will likely find them learning a new instrument, playing an Irish tune on the fiddle or communing with the unseen spirits and energies that guide their work... or watching netflix in bed with a cup of tea :)

Anie Boudreau

Sanjida Ali is a cisgender, straight, Bengali American woman who earned a degree in Neuroscience from Brown University. In 2015, she began studying meditation, Buddhist philosophy, and psychology.

Sanjida completed Karuna Training from 2019 to 2023, finding immense value in its embodied practices. This experience provided her with profound insights into the interconnectedness among the brain, body, emotions, environment, and human behavior. These lessons seamlessly integrated into her daily life, expanding her capacity for compassionate listening, patience, and grace, towards both herself and others. Sanjida is committed to fostering inclusive environments, where individuals embrace each other's unique strengths and experiences, nurturing personal growth and building connections rooted in a shared belief in the inherent wisdom and goodness within each individual.

Professionally, Sanjida manages human clinical trials in the biotech and pharmaceutical industries. She delights in cuddling cats, tending to plants, creating art, and embracing playfulness whenever possible.

Karuna Training is training in how to evoke the innate health of the present moment.

Confidence in our intrinsic health requires the ability to let go of our interpretations of the world, and learn to relate to phenomena directly, openly and clearly.

This takes a lot of training and a compassionate community to ripen our innate wisdom within.

Melissa Moore, PhD.
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram