Buddhist Recovery Network - Inaugural Conference

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Board Members

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In Memoriam




Cannon Beach Meeting

2009 Inaugural Conference

BRN Newsletters


“Recovery from Addiction in a Buddhist Context”

The best place to start is at the beginning...

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More Information on the Program

Thanks and Acknowledgements

The BRN: The Story So Far

How the 12 Steps got to Santikaro

Vince Cullen and the Thamkrabok Monastery

International Expansion of the BRN

Miya Ando

The Venues


Conference Brochure

The full 2009 Inaugural Conference brochure is now available for download . You may also wish to read the various parts of the brochure on line below.



Trudy GoodmanTrudy Goodman, EdM

Trudy is President and Founder of InsightLA, a non-proft organization for secular mindfulness education and Vipassana meditation training. She teaches extensively in the field of meditation and psychotherapy at conferences and retreats nationwide. In 1995, she co-founded the very first Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy in Cambridge, MA, where she lived and taught at the Cambridge Buddhist Association from 1991-98. Trudy has studied Buddhist meditation for 35 years, with Asian and Western teachers, and is also an affiliate teacher at Spirit Rock Meditation Center in Woodacre, California.


Kevin GriffinKevin Griffin


Kevin is the author of One Breath at a Time: Buddhism and the Twelve Steps (Rodale Press, 2004) and the forthcoming A Burning Desire: Dharma God and the Path of Recovery (Hay House, 2009). He is a leader in the mindful recovery movement and a co-founder of the Buddhist Recovery Network. He teaches at treatment centers, spiritual centers, professional conferences, and colleges across the US. Trained as a Community Dharma Leader at Spirit Rock Meditation Center, he takes a spontaneous and intiAmate approach to teaching mindfulness, drawing from a depth of experience in recovery, in meditation, and in group facilitation. His many years as a professional musician and writer inform his creative approach to healing.


Professor G. Alan MarlattProfessor G. Alan Marlatt


Alan is Professor of Psychology and Director of the Addictive Behaviors Research Center at the University of Washington. In addition to over 200 journal articles and book chapters, he has published several books in the addictions feld. He specializes in relapse prevention and has received several awards for his work, including the Jellinek Memorial Award for Alcohol Studies (1990), the Innovators Combating Substance Abuse Award from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (2001), and the Distinguished Research Award from the Research Society on Alcoholism (2004). He is a Buddhist who practices in the Shambhala tradition.


Noah LevineNoah Levine


Noah Levine, author of Dharma Punx (Harper SanFrancisco, 2003) and Against The Stream (HarperCollins, 2007), is a Buddhist teacher, author and counselor. He was trained to teach by Jack Kornfeld of Spirit Rock Meditation Center in Woodacre, CA. He is the founding teacher of Against the Stream Buddhist Meditation Society, with a Center in Los Angeles and over 20 affiliated groups around North America. He teaches meditation classes, workshops and retreats internationally. Noah holds a Masters degree in counseling psychology. He lives in Los Angeles.


Thich Dao QuangThich Dao Quang


‘Thay’ was born and raised as a Buddhist in a small village in central Vietnam, and in 1991 he entered a monastery and received instruction from Thich Thanh Tu. Thay moved to America in 1994, and in 2005 became Abbot of the Tam Bao Vietnamese Temple in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He has a degree in Psychology and a Masters in Community Counseling. Thay works with mental health professionals regarding the use of meditation in addressing mental health disorders. He has also taught mindfulness techniques to prisoners in state facilities in Georgia and Texas.




Santikaro is a Dhamma student-practitioner, translator, and Buddhist meditation teacher who lives with his wife Jo Marie at Liberation Park in Norwalk, WI. Inspired by the suttas of early Buddhism and guided by the profound infuence of Buddhadasa Bhikkhu, Santikaro seeks to translate the heart of the Buddha’s liberating message into a life free of suffering in the midst of the challenges of modern life. Trough Liberation Park, he seeks to support Buddhist study and practice in the Midwest, along with other movements for true healing. In 2004-06, AA friends in the Chicago area initiated a dialogue concerning Buddhism and the 12 Steps. The talks Santikaro gave during that dialogue can be found at www.liberationpark.org . Subsequently, Santikaro has begun to meet with alcoholics and addiction counselors in Siam when he visits there annually and is consulting with a new culturally appropriate translation of the Big Book into Thai.


Other Facilitators, Speakers and Panel Members

Jeff Bell is the author of the forthcoming book When in Doubt, Make Belief: Life Lessons from OCD, offering a look at the many parallels between OCD doubt and everyday uncertainty, and the critical roles that applied belief and mindfulness can play in addressing both. A recovering OCD sufferer, himself, Bell speaks on behalf of a number of mental health organizations and makes his living as a radio news anchor in San Francisco.

Beverly Berg, PhD has worked with adults and children, both individuals and couples, in a full psychotherapy practice for the last 30 years, and for over 25 years in the feld of chemical dependency as a marriage, family and child therapist. She has worked in hospitals and institutions for drug and alcohol recovery as a consultant/trainer in the areas of alcoholism treatment, hypnosis and meditation. Beverly has studied Vipassana meditation with teacher Trudy Goodman, the founder of InsightLA. Presently she studies the neurobiology of the brain in couples therapy with Dr. Stan Tatkin.

Dr Ann Bolger is a Clinical Psychologist who maintains private psychotherapy practices in west San Jose and in Santa Cruz, specializing in the treatment of substance abuse and other addictions. She has trained extensively as a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction teacher with Drs. Jon Kabat-Zinn and Bob Stahl. At present, she is teaching Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention to people recovering from alcoholism and drug addiction in the Bay Area. Previously, she held Lecturer appointments at San Jose State University (SJSU) and has served as Vice Presdent of the Board of the Silicon Valley chapter of the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD).

Laura Burges, a lay teacher in the Soto Zen tradition, lectures and leads retreats in Northern California. Her column “Is That So?” appears monthly on the San Francisco Zen Center website. A practitioner since 1975, she recently received Lay Entrustment from her teacher, Eijun Linda Cutts.

Pablo Das is a mindfulness based nutrition, wellness and recovery counselor. He centralizes mindfulness practice as well as the principles of non-religious Buddhist Dharma in his client work. He is a graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and has trained in food therapy at the Natural Gourmet Institute. He is trained and empowered to teach Buddhism by Noah Levine. He is a strong advocate for empowering and non dogmatic approaches to diet and recovery. Pablo is a nationally distributed indie-folk punk musician. He volunteers at a suicide helpline for Gay Youth. He lives in Brooklyn, NY.

Damon Gay has lived in Tucson since 1991 and been a member of the Tucson Shambhala Meditation Group since 2000. He began the on-going Sarpashana meditation group for people in recovery in 2002, and has been active in Alcoholics Anonymous, SAA and other twelve-step programs since beginning his addiction recoveries in San Francisco in 1986.

Rev. Alex Holt is half time consulting minister at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Yakima, Washington. Alex has served churches in the Pacific Northwest and the Midwest for over a decade. He is also a long term Zen Buddhist student at Great Vow Zen Monastery in Oregon studying under the tutorage of his teachers Chozen and Hogen Bays. He is the chair of the UUA Addictions Ministry Team and has helped to develop the frst regional addictions ministry for the UUA in the last several years. As a recovering alcoholic, Alex is well aware of the challenges and ministry of addiction and recovery. He is on the advisory council of the Buddhist Recovery Network and is being trained by Faith Partners, Inc. - an ecumenical foundation devoted to interfaith response to addiction and recovery.

M. Kathleen B. Lustyk, PhD is Professor of Psychology at Seattle Pacific University (SPU) and Affiliate Associate Professor at the University of Washington School of Nursing. She is the primary investigator of the Women’s Health Lab at SPU where she investigates numerous issues affecting the lives of women. Dr. Lustyk and her research team have started to investigate the role mindfulness plays in the female stress response and its effects on premenstrual symptom reporting. In collaboration with Dr. G. Alan Marlatt, Dr. Lustyk is preparing to investigate changes in the psychophysiological stress response of persons with substance use disorders following treatment with Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention therapy. In 2002, Dr. Lustyk received the Outstanding Research Article Award from the Society of Gastroenterology Nurses and Associates for her work in women’s health.



Raul Pacheco is a lead singer and guitarist for Ozomatli. Ozomatli is a grammy winning and global touring Los Angeles based band that has promoted the idea of a world where all worlds ft for the last 15 years. Raul has been active in recovery for the last 4 years and has come across the helpfulness of the Dharma through friends at Against Te Stream. Raul is honored to play at this conference.


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