The Centre for Mindfulness Studies in Toronto provides mindfulness based therapies for anxiety, depression, depressive relapse prevention, healthy eating, ADHD, diabetes and stress reduction. The Centre is one of Canada’s leading providers of professional development in mindfulness based interventions. We offer one-day workshops as well as intensive professional training in Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR).

Our faculty includes physicians, psychologists, social workers and other health-care professionals. Our facilitators meet the Good Practice Guidelines for teaching mindfulness-based courses from the UK Network for Mindfulness-Based Teachers.

For purposes of Mentorship in MBCT & MBSR, please see the list of our MBCT Mentors and MBSR Mentors.

Senior Faculty

Patricia Rockman MD CCFP FCFP

Patricia-RockmanProfession: Physician

Patricia Rockman is an associate professor with the University of Toronto, department of family and community medicine; cross appointed to psychiatry. She is the past chair of the Ontario College of Family Physicians Collaborative Mental Health Network. She is a medical psychotherapist and leads MBCT groups. She has been educating healthcare providers in stress reduction, CBT and mindfulness-based practices for over 20 years. She is a founder and the Director of Education and Clinical Services at the Centre for Mindfulness Studies and the developer of the MBCT Core Facilitation Certificate Program.

Zindel Segal PhD C.Psych

Zindel SegalProfession: Professor of Psychology

Dr. Zindel Segal is a distinguished Professor of Psychology in Mood Disorders at the University of Toronto Scarborough and a senior scientist in the Campbell Family Research Institute at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. Dr. Segal pioneered the use of mindfulness meditation for promoting wellness in mood disorders and received the Douglas Utting Research Prize and the Mood Disorder Association of Ontario’s Hope Award for this work. His research has been continuously funded by the National Institute of Mental Health and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research for the past 15 years. His studies have been featured in the Wall Street Journal, CNN Health Online and the New York Times. An author of over 10 books and 150 scientific articles, Dr. Segal’s recent books The Mindful Way Through Depression and The Mindful Way Workbook, are patient guides for dealing with stress and achieving mood balance in everyday life.

Susan Woods MSW LICSW

Profession: Social Worker

Susan Woods is the Senior Guiding Teacher with the Mindfulness-Based Professional Training Institute (MBPTI), Center for Mindfulness, University of California San Diego. Susan created the MBSR and MBCT certification programs at the MBPTI. Susan’s passion is to create professional trainings that provide depth and quality leading to best practice skills that support competency in the delivery of mindfulness-based programs. Susan has been teaching MBSR and MBCT for many years. She is a certified MBSR teacher through the Center of Mindfulness, University of Massachusetts Medical Center where she was a teacher. Since 2005, Susan has been leading professional training programs in MBSR and MBCT and has taught at venues worldwide. She is an MBSR/MBCT mentor and supervisor, and a professional advisor on various MBCT clinical trials.  Susan has presented on the clinical application of mindfulness at numerous conferences and is a published author on the training of health professionals in mindfulness-based skills.  Susan is a graduate of the two-year Community Dharma Leaders program at Spirit Rock Meditation Center, Woodacre, CA. She is a certified yoga teacher.

Evan Collins MD FRCPC

Profession:  Physician

Evan Collins is assistant professor at the University of Toronto’s department of psychiatry and staff psychiatrist at the Toronto General Hospital where he is affiliated with the Immunodeficiency Clinic. His clinical and research interests include therapeutic mindfulness, and HIV psychiatry. He is certified in MBSR and MBCT, and runs groups at the University Health Network as well as the Centre for Mindfulness Studies. He also trains and mentors healthcare providers in the use of mindfulness-based interventions through the University of California, San Diego Mindfulness-Based Professional Training Institute and the Centre for Mindfulness Studies.

All Faculty

Andrea Alvarez MD

Profession: Physician

Andrea Alvarez is an assistant professor with the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences at McMaster University. She is the Director of Education and Research and an outpatient psychiatrist at the Canadian Mental Health Association Waterloo
Wellington Region. She is also a consultant psychiatrist for the Bariatric Program in Guelph General Hospital.

She has practiced Psychiatry in Acute Care, Chronic Care and she works with individuals with moderate to severe mental health challenges. Her areas of interest include Mind and Body Medicine, psychotherapy and teaching. Dr. Alvarez is expanding her knowledge
in mindfulness-based therapies to bring them in her clinical practise.

Andrew Adams BSc Psych

Andrew-Adams-150x150Profession:  Counsellor

Andrew Adams works with issues including physical /intellectual disability, addiction, mental health, abuse, caregiver stress, HIV, non-status immigrant, and marginalized youth. Professionally trained in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Mindfulness Based Interventions, Andrew has a personal meditation practice and works with The Centre for Mindfulness Studies and the St Clare’s Multifaith Housing Society to bring Mindfulness-Based Stress Management to fellow front-line staff and people with substance addictions.

Michael Apollo BMOS RP

Profession:  Registered Psychotherapist

Michael Apollo is an experienced mindfulness facilitator, registered psychotherapist, and former Program Director of the University of Toronto’s Mindfulness Meditation certificate program. Michael founded MGC, a corporate consulting firm that has been delivering mindfulness training for over a decade to executives and knowledge workers in the finance, healthcare and technology industries. Michael has completed over 33 international long-term meditation retreats with 10,000+ hours of meditation practice and holds an advanced level certification from the University of California San Diego and the University of Toronto in Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT). Michael is faculty at the Centre for Mindfulness Studies with a special focus on workplace mindfulness, digital MBCT/MBSR program development and professional training. Michael is passionate about advancing the field of mindfulness and is founder of Canada’s premiere mindfulness conference A Mindful Society held in Toronto, Canada.


Profession: Social Worker

Eileen is both a Social Worker and a Special Care Counsellor with over 40 years of clinical experience in both hospital and community settings. She is an author and a published researcher. She is recognized as a “Certified Mindful Self- Compassion Teacher” through the University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine, Centre for Mindfulness. She most recently received her Core MBCT Facilitation Certificate from the University of Toronto’s Factor- Inwentash Faculty of Social Work. She has had extensive training and clinical experience with families and individuals experiencing anxiety, bereavement, depression, empathy fatigue and trauma. Eileen has been incorporating Mindful Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) and Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) practices into her work with teachers, health-care professionals and other clients for a number of years.

Rainer Beltzner FCPA FCA FCMC ICD.D

Profession: Certified MSC Teacher

Rainer is a seasoned business professional and retired KPMG partner who, over the past four decades, has experienced the realities of large corporate structures, politics and interpersonal conflicts on a national and international basis. He has taught at Universities across Canada and mentored clients, staff and friends as they struggled with business, career and personal challenges. He completed his formal MSC teacher training in 2014 with Kristin Neff, Chris Germer, Steve Hickman and Michelle Becker and is recognized as a “Certified MSC Teacher” through the University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine, Centre for Mindfulness.

As husband and wife, with over 45 years of joint life and parenting experiences, Rainer and his spouse Eileen (also a Certified MSC Teacher), co-present the full 8- week MSC training program as well as introductory MSC workshops, offering their participants a unique perspective and experience.

Arpita Biswas PhD C.Psych

Arpita-150x150Profession: Psychologist

Arpita Biswas is a registered psychologist in private practice in Toronto. She has over two decades of clinical experience in the treatment of mental health issues including anxiety, depression and trauma. Her areas of expertise include CBT and mindfulness-based interventions. She has obtained extensive training in mindfulness meditation and maintains a daily practice.

Markus Bohlmann PhD

Profession: Mindfulness Teacher

Markus Bohlmann, PhD, is certified in Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) through the Centre for Mindfulness Studies and the University of Toronto. He is a trained teacher of Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) through the Center for Mindful Self-Compassion, University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine, and has completed the Applied Specialization in Mindfulness Meditation Certificate at the University of Toronto. He teaches mindfulness at Seneca College, where he is also a professor of English. He was born in Germany and now lives in Toronto, Canada.

Monica Branigan MD

Monica Branigan 150x150Profession:  Physician

Monica Branigan is a palliative care physician providing psycho-social-spiritual support to patients and families at home. She is an associate professor in the Division of Palliative Care at the University of Toronto. With over thirty years of practice, she has a rich clinical and teaching experience. Her mindfulness training includes the Metta End of Life Practitioner Program and MBCT. She is on the faculty for Mindfulness and Compassion in End of Life Care through the Faculty of Social Work at U of T.

Anya Choulsky OT Reg. (Ont.)

Anya Choulsky-150x150Profession:  Occupational Therapist

Anya Choulsky is an occupational therapist, a psychotherapist and a mindfulness teacher with the mood and anxiety services at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. She is a status lecturer at the Department of Occupational Therapy and Occupational Science at the University of Toronto, and is working on her master’s degree in rehabilitation science at the McMaster University. Anya facilitates CBT and MBCT programs at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health.

Sharon Cirone MD CFPC FCFP ASAM (Cert.)

Sharon Cirone-143x150Profession:  Physician

Sharon Cirone is a primary care physician with a focused practice in addiction medicine and mental health in Toronto. She provides medical psychotherapy in modalities of Motivational Interviewing, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and trauma focused care.  Sharon has a personal mindfulness practice and began training in mindfulness facilitation in 2012. She is a member of a team of facilitators of Mindfulness Based Relapse Prevention (MBRP) at St. Joseph’s Health Centre.

Laura Lee Copeland MD MBA FACEP

Laura Lee COPELAND-150x150Profession:  Physician

Laura Lee Copeland is an emergency physician and Director of Medical Informatics for Humber River Hospital. She has used mindfulness to manage stress in her own life for many years and enjoys sharing the journey with others who may benefit. She has trained in MBCT at the Centre for Mindfulness. She will be expanding her practice at the Centre and Humber River Hospital.

Bobby Esbin MD

Bobby Esbin-150x150Profession:  Physician

Bobby Esbin received his medical degree from the University of Toronto in 1984. He has extensive clinical experience treating anxiety, depression, substance abuse and addiction. He has a special interest and extensive training in mindfulness-based therapy and its direct application to a variety of mental health conditions.

Norman Farb PhD

norm Farb-150x150Profession:  Cognitive Neuroscientist

Norman Farb is a cognitive neuroscientist at the University of Toronto. His research examines the neuroscience of mindfulness, with a particular focus on how physical sensations are interpreted to create a sense of identity. He completed both his MA and PhD in Psychology at the University of Toronto, exploring neural mechanisms of mindfulness.

Jeremy Finkelstein

Profession:  MBSR Facilitator

Jeremy Finkelstein is the founder of Mindful Living, a psychotherapeutic mindfulness-based meditation group for beginners and MBCT/MBSR graduates and a mindfulness-based facilitator for Mindfulness Everyday and The Centre for Mindfulness Studies. He has done facilitator training through the University of Massachusetts medical school and The Centre for Mindfulness Studies. At The Centre, Jeremy facilitates MBSR and leads silent retreats and introductory workshops. With Mindfulness Everyday, Jeremy facilitates The Mindful Edge: Stress Reduction and Life Strategies for Teens

Amanda Guthrie ND RP

Amanda-Guthrie-150x150Profession:  Naturopath, Registered Psychotherapist

Amanda Guthrie is a naturopathic doctor with a family practice in Toronto. She has a special interest in providing care for people dealing with stress, anxiety, depression and digestive health concerns. She has trained in MBCT and provides treatments that blend scientific research with holistic healing, including mindfulness-based therapies and healthy lifestyle counselling.

Eva Hahler PhD C.Psych

Eva HAHLER-150x150Profession:  Psychologist

Eva Hahler is a clinical psychologist and neuropsychologist and a yoga teacher for children, adolescents and adults. She has diverse experience across different hospital and healthcare settings in the assessment and treatment of psychological, neurodevelopmental and neurological conditions, with specific experience in CBT and mindfulness-based approaches for anxiety and mood disorders. She is currently working at the Toronto District School Board, where she is involved in initiatives for the implementation of mindfulness practices in the school system. She has completed mindfulness training for youth with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and autism spectrum disorder, as well as mindful parenting training with Dr. Susan Bögels, and has trained in MBCT facilitation at the Center for Mindfulness Studies.

Darren Higgins MD FRCPC

darren-Higgins-150x150Profession:  Physician

Darren Higgins is a staff psychiatrist at Mount Sinai Hospital, a lecturer in the department of psychiatry at the University of Toronto and has a private practice in adult psychiatry in Toronto. He leads MBCT groups at CAMH and integrates mindfulness and acceptance-based approaches in his individual and group psychotherapy work.

Alison Kelford MD MHSc CCFP FCFP

Profession:  Medical Doctor

Alison is a family physician in community practice. She has more than 20 years helping people manage a wide range of mental health and stress based illness  in a primary care setting.  She has a longstanding mindfulness practice and has completed training in CBT and MBSR. She is presently enrolled in the MBCT facilitation certificate through The Centre for Mindfulness Studies.

Angie Kingma OT Reg. (Ont.) RP

Angie Kingma-150x150Profession:  Registered Psychotherapist, OT

Angie Kingma has over 17 years of experience working in a variety of mental health settings, including hospital based, home care, auto insurance and private practice. She is a certified facilitator of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) and has applied this program to a variety of populations such as individuals with anxiety, depression, and chronic pain, as well as to hospital staff. She also facilitates DBT and CBT group psychotherapy at Trillium Health Partners.

Sarah Kinsley BA (Hons) B.Ed M.Ed C.Psych

Profession: Clinical Counsellor

Sarah Kinsley was the coordinator of the Embodied Mind stream of the Applied Mindfulness Meditation program in Continuing Education at the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work. She worked at Native Child and Family Services of Toronto as a Child and Family Therapist. She has trained with Indigenous Elders in the field of healing within Canada and abroad. Sarah has completed three Yoga Teacher Training courses, and studied with various Yogis in North America and Asia.


Leysa Cerswell Kielburger MA

Leysa is completing her PhD in Clinical Psychology. Her research aims to address issues and concerns relevant to populations that are underserved or marginalized in mental health care. She specializes in community-based mental health care and the delivery of culturally-grounded, evidence-based services, including mindfulness-based cognitive and behavioural therapies. Leysa has trained educators and health care providers in North America, Southeast Asia, and East Africa. She currently leads partnership development in the Centre’s Community Program.

Allison McLay BA DCS RP

allison-McLay-150x150Profession:  Psychometrist and Registered Psychotherapist

Allison McLay has over 25 years of experience in psychological assessment and counseling, in private practice and in a university setting. She has been facilitating MBCT groups for over 12 years.  Her experience has included delivering and developing MBSR and applied mindfulness groups for individuals with ADHD and ASD’s at the Centre for Mindfulness Studies and at York University.  She provides professional training of MBI’s at the Centre and other settings and is a certified mentor in MBCT and MBSR for practitioners seeking certification in mindfulness-based interventions.

Dee Miron OT Reg. (Ont.)

Dee-Miron-150x150Profession:  Occupational Therapist

Dee Miron is an occupational therapist with a special interest and background in mental health. She has taken numerous workshops and seminars related to mindfulness and mental health; including  Level 1 Certification in MBCT Facilitation from the Centre for Mindfulness Studies and training in MBCPM with Dr. Jackie Gardner-Nix.

Raha Mirian MA RP

Raha Mirian-150x150Profession:  Registered Psychotherapist

Raha Mirian is a Registered Pyschotherapist working in private practice in Toronto, with over 10 years of experience in meditation and mindfulness. She specializes in trauma-informed, compassion and mindfulness-based approaches to wellbeing. For the past several years, she has used her extensive training to provide clinical interventions to clients facing issues in the areas of trauma, anxiety and mood disorders, substance abuse, self-harm, suicidality, grief and loss, physical concerns, and relationship difficulties. She provides individual therapy, training in mindfulness and meditation, and leads MBCT and DBT Skills Training groups.

Nikki Mohle RN CNO

Nikki MohleProfession:  Registered Nurse

Nikki Mohle is a registered nurse specializing in mental health. For the past three years she has been working with adults living with anxiety, depression, and substance use issues at the Homewood Health Centre using CBT and mindfulness-based interventions. She has practiced mindfulness for several years and studied the application of mindfulness and yoga to depression, anxiety, substance use, and disordered eating, including recent completion of her certificate in MBCT.

Gwen Morgan MA MSW RSW RP

gwen Morgan-150x150Profession:  Social Worker
Lead – MBSR Program

Gwen is a Certified MBSR and MBCT teacher and Approved Mentor in both MBSR and MBCT with The Centre for Mindfulness Studies and the University of San Diego Mindfulness-Based Professional Training Institute. She has extensive experience offering groups in medical and community settings. Her own training began with the 7-day Intensive with Jon Kabat Zinn and Saki Santorelli and she has trained with many senior teachers over the years. She has been a teaching assistant in the 6-day MBSR intensive for professionals and is involved in training professionals and community peer leaders at The Centre. She facilitates both MBSR and MBCT programs and works with staff in the Community Program to offer mindfulness to marginalized peoples. She designed Finding Balance, MBSR for diabetes and is certified in Mindfulness-Based Eating Awareness Training (MB-EAT). Gwen is a Social Worker and Registered Psychotherapist focusing on promoting wellness when living with chronic illness.

Dominique Morisano PhD C.Psych

Profession:  Clinical Psychologist

Dominique Morisano is a research scientist, consultant, lecturer, workshop leader, and licensed clinical psychologist in private practice. She currently holds status academic appointments at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH; Affiliate Scientist, Social and Epidemiological Research) and University of Toronto (Assistant Professor, Dalla Lana School of Public Health). She previously worked both clinically (Supervising Psychologist) and directing research at the Child and Family Institute of St. Luke’s Roosevelt-Hospital Centre while holding an academic appointment at Columbia University (Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychology in Psychiatry). Prior to joining the Faculty of CMS as a researcher, she was an Independent Scientist at CAMH (2011-2015). She has been actively involved with the Mind and Life Organization since 2008 and participates annually in their Summer Research Institute. Her main clinical and research interests center around goal-setting and motivation, addiction treatment and harm-reduction, and mindfulness-based approaches to wellness. She maintains a regular practice of both yoga and meditation. She can be followed on Twitter (

Rose Mina Munjee MBA RP Candidate

Profession: Trained MSC, MBSR and MBCT teacher

Rose Mina Munjee is an experienced mindfulness facilitator certified by the University of Toronto Applied Mindfulness Meditation Program, the Center for Mindfulness Studies, University of Toronto, and trained by University of California San Diego, and the Center for Mindful Self Compassion. Rose facilitates individual and group courses and workshops for Individuals, Groups, Leaders, and Staff, in evidence-based mindfulness interventions including MBSR, MBCT, and MSC. She is also a Rotman MBA graduate (2000) and a candidate for Registered Psychotherapist by CRPO.  Rose has worked internationally in senior roles in Business Process Analysis and Systems Integration for CIBC, Scotiabank, IBM, Algorithmics, Aga Khan Agency for Microfinance, and the University of Toronto. She has facilitated Mindfulness at Work and Mindful Leadership workshops for organizations including Mastercard Foundation, IBM, The 519 Community Center, University of Toronto, and United Steelworkers Union. For more information, articles published, and guided meditations you may visit Rose is currently completing her Masters in Spiritual Care and Counseling with a focus on Psychotherapy and Buddhist Studies at the University of Toronto, Emmanuel College.

Melissa Nigrini M.Ed RP

Melissa Nigrini 150x150Profession: Registered Psychotherapist, Educator

Melissa Nigrini specializes in adult education and experiential learning, with over 20 years of experience designing, implementing and evaluating education programs and curricula. Melissa has been a mindfulness meditation practitioner for over 15 years and is a certified facilitator of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy, Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, Mindfulness-Based Cancer Recovery and SMART Education. At the Centre for Mindfulness Studies, she is a facilitator, trainer and mentor, as well as curriculum and faculty development lead.  She is a senior instructor in the Applied Mindfulness Meditation Program at University of Toronto. She also designs and facilitates mindfulness programs for organizations.

Elaine Orsini BA ECE OTC RP

Profession:  Registered Psychotherapist

Elaine is a Registered Psychotherapist, teacher and meditator. Elaine has received her MBSR Facilitation Certificate from the University of Toronto’s Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work. At the Center for Mindfulness Studies, Elaine specializes in facilitating Mindfulness Stress Reduction Programs (MBSR) as well as Introductory Mindfulness workshops. As an experienced educator and High School Chaplain, Elaine’s 36 year teaching career has spanned all grades from kindergarten to grade 12 in Ontario, British Columbia and Zambia, Africa. Elaine developed the first Mindfulness Camp for teenagers at Camp Olympia as well as piloted the first Mindfulness Programs in her High School with Mindfulness Without Borders.

Nicholas Ozarko MSW RSW

nick-ozarko-150x150 Profession:  Social Worker

Nicholas Ozarko is a social worker with a background in adult mental health and experience providing treatment services in hospital and community settings. He has also held positions with the Psychiatric Patient Advocate Office and the Public Guardian and Trustee. He has experience teaching clients practical skills using cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness-based approaches. His personal mindfulness practice and ongoing training in mindfulness-based therapy inform his work with clients.

Shawna Perlin MD

Profession:  Medical Doctor

Shawna Perlin is a family physician in Toronto with over 30 years experience in her practice. She graduated with a Psychology Degree from University of Toronto in 1975, and a medical degree from Dalhousie University, in 1981. She completed a Family Practice/Emergency residency at MacMaster University in 1986.  She has a strong interest in Women’s Heath and Mental Health. She has done a lot of psychotherapy in her practice. She  began studying mindfulness and yoga in 2014. She is completing her MBCT certificate program and teaching MBCT groups at the Centre. She brings openness and humour to her groups along with her mindfulness teaching.

Rhea Plosker MC, MASc, RSW, RP

Profession: Engineer, Registered Social Worker, and Registered Psychotherapist

Rhea is an Engineer, Registered Social Worker, and Registered Psychotherapist working in private practice in Toronto. Rhea discovered a passion for group work while completing her Master of Counselling degree and has extensive experience leading groups in hospital and community mental health settings. She holds certificates in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, and MBCT facilitation. Social Work is Rhea’s second career, following her first corporate career as a technology executive and consultant. She continues to work with not-for-profit organizations using technology to enhance service delivery. Rhea discovered mindfulness through experiencing the benefit of taking an MBSR program, and now delivers MBCT programs in the community and online. You can learn more about Rhea at


Kelley Raab PhD RP

Profession: Registered Psychotherapist

Kelley holds a Ph.D. in Religious Studies from the University of Ottawa. She taught at universities in the U.S. for fourteen years. After obtaining psychotherapy training in Chicago and Ottawa, Kelley shifted her career in a clinical direction. Since 2005 she has worked at the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. Kelley has a longstanding personal interest in meditation. As a component of her personal practice, Kelley has attended workshops and/or retreats with Tara Brach, Michael Stone, and Michele McDonald, among others. Since obtaining professional training in 2010, she has provided clinical mindfulness groups at the Royal for clients suffering from depression, anxiety, and addictions. She completed MBCT and MBRP (mindfulness-based relapse prevention) professional training in 2013 and 2015, respectively. Kelley also co-facilitates mindfulness training for staff and is a co-investigator on a research study comparing MBCT with CBT for clients suffering from depression.

Blakie Sahay OT Reg. (Ont.)

Profession: Occupational Therapist

Blakie has been an Occupational Therapist specializing in mental health and addictions for over 13 years. She has additional training in cognitive-behavioural therapy for anxiety and depression management as well as mindfulness based therapies for depression, anxiety addictions, stress and chronic pain. She has a private practice working with Canadian Veterans with mental health and addictions challenges in the community. She is also a certified Yoga Instructor and is currently completing a post professional Masters of Occupational Therapy degree focusing on the benefits mindfulness based group programs can have on improving a sense of belonging for participants.


Patricia Savage RN MPS

FullSizeRenderProfession: Mental Health Therapist

Patricia Savage is a Mental Health Therapist in private Practice in Muskoka, Ontario. She has a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Masters of Professional Studies in Psychotherapy and Expressive Arts Therapy. Patricia has extensive experience working in acute inpatient, outpatient and community settings as well as in primary care. She facilitates MBCT groups in Huntsville, Ontario through the Algonquin Family Health Team.

Joanna Shapiro MD CCFP

Profession: Medical Doctor

Joanna is a family physician in a community practice. She has a special interest in women’s and children’s health, as well as navigating the challenges of parenting through the family life cycle. She has been in family practice for 20 years initially practicing and teaching at The University Health Network before moving to a community setting. She enjoys a personal mindfulness practice which lead her to pursue the Facilitation Certificate through The Centre for Mindfulness Studies.

Wendy Stanyon RN EdD

Profession: Registered Nurse

Wendy Stanyon is an associate professor with the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT), Faculty of Health Sciences and a registered nurse, Wendy has worked in mental health for more than 30 years. Given the prevalence of mental illness, she considers mental illness awareness to be a required life skill and works collaboratively with individuals and community groups to raise awareness and facilitate a greater understanding of health and wellness strategies. Wendy has also completed a certificate in applied mindfulness through the University of Toronto, Faculty of Social Work and trained in MBCT facilitation at The Centre for Mindfulness Studies.

Ian Singer MSW RSW

Ian-Singer-150x150 Profession: Social Worker

Ian Singer is a Senior Clinical Counsellor at Catholic Family Services of Toronto, where he provides couple counselling and individual psychotherapy.  His private practice is located in The Centre for MindBody Health.  Ian began training in Insight-oriented mindfulness meditation (Vipassana) in India and Nepal in 1992.  He is an Instructor in the University of Toronto’s Applied Mindfulness Meditation Certificate Program.  Ian can be reached at

Pat Smith MD

Pat-Smith-150x150 Profession: Physician

Pat Smith is a family physician who works in the area of women’s reproductive health. She has practiced mindfulness for over 10 years and is currently expanding her learning and teaching to include MBCT groups.

Elaine Smookler BMus RP

ES208Profession: Registered Psychotherapist

Elaine Smookler is a Registered Psychotherapist, teacher, public speaker, writer and performer (BMus, ACTRA). For the past 20 years, she has helped individuals, schools, organizations and businesses develop mindfulness and resilience in everyday life. Elaine has received the Core MBCT Facilitation Certificate from the University of Toronto’s Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work and professional training as an MBSR facilitator. At the Centre for Mindfulness Studies Elaine offers MBCT, MBSR and Introductory Mindfulness programs. Elaine is a facilitator of The Mindfulness Project at Sickkids Hospital, a columnist for Mindful magazine ( and she teaches mindfulness as part of the curriculum at University of Toronto Medical School. Elaine developed and presents the learning series “Get Started With Mindfulness” for and she offers a course in project development: “The Mindful Way Through The Creative Process,” for the University of Toronto’s School of Continuing Studies. Elaine presents stress management programs, online talks and support to American corporations through eMindful and in-person mindfulness programs to a wide variety of clients.


Karen Sutherland MSW RSW

Profession: Social Worker

Karen holds a Master’s degree in Social Work, and has specialist training in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) amongst other therapeutic modalities.  The personal benefit of participating in an MBCT 8-week program while she was in graduate school in 2012 lead her to professional training in Mindfulness Based Interventions and she now both delivers MBCT programs and works at The Centre for Mindfulness Studies as the director of client services.

Evelyn Tan MA SLP reg. CASLPO

Profession:  Speech-Language Pathologist

Evelyn Tan is a Speech-Language Pathologist in private practice with over 30 years of clinical experience in acute care, adult and pediatric rehabilitation and complex continuing care hospitals, and in community settings.  She holds a casual position at The Ottawa Hospital and The Rehabilitation Centre.  She has had a personal practice in mindfulness and vipassana meditation for over twelve years, having first learned it from buddhist monastics and lay teachers from the Theravadan tradition.  She trained in MBCT in 2011 with Dr. Zindel Segal, Dr. Stephen Hick and Dr. Sarah Bowen as well as with Sue Woods and Char Wilkinson in an MBCT Teacher Training Intensive.  In 2014, she participated in the Teach .b Certification Course given by Mindfulness in Schools Project senior trainers Kevin Hawkins and James Gibbs.  Ms Tan was part of a tri-centre research study to determine if MBCT would be beneficial to persons with traumatic brain injury.  She continued to provide MBCT at The Rehabilitation Centre (Ottawa) after the completion of that study in 2011. In 2016, she developed a mindfulness and CBT program designed for small groups of people experiencing complex mild TBI which she continues to run in her private practice.   Website:

Associate Faculty

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