Spotlight Session

Included in Your Conference Registration

Developing the Inner Conditions to Lead for Social Justice


Social justice is an ethical, social and moral imperative for many of us as leaders, yet our usual approaches to social change often focus on external conditions and neglect the inner conditions we need to cultivate in ourselves as leaders. This panel will explore the role of mindfulness in cultivating the inner conditions of the leader that are necessary to effect social justice. Panelists will also discuss methodologies and practices that can facilitate awareness, insight, and skillful action at the personal, organizational, and societal levels.


Kathryn Goldman Schuyler

Session Chair
Kathryn Goldman Schuyler chairs the ILA 2020 conference and studies with masterful teachers of meditation including the Dalai Lama and Mingyur Rinpoche. Her research focuses on bringing moments of mindfulness and joy to work. In addition to her role as professor, she guides meditation sessions, teaches Awareness Through Movement, and is a PSA-certified ski instructor. Publications include three edited books on leadership and societal change and many articles on awareness-based systems change.

Rich Fernandez

Rich Fernandez is CEO of Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute (SIYLI), with over 12 years of experience as manager and executive in the finance and technology industries. SIYLI is working with the government of Bhutan to train over 18,000 government employees in mindfulness so as to further the nation’s level of Gross National Happiness. Rich has a PhD in Psychology from Columbia University.

Matthew Lee

Matthew Lee, PhD, is Director of Empirical Research at the Human Flourishing Program in the Institute for Quantitative Social Science at Harvard University. His Presidential Address for the North Central Sociological Association focused on the importance of mindfulness for leaders and society and he helps organizations measure and improve their compassion capability. He chaired the American Sociological Association’s Section on Altruism, Morality, and Social Solidarity.

Rhonda Magee

Rhonda Magee is Professor of Law, University of San Francisco, Chair of the Board of SIYLI, author of The Inner Work of Racial Justice: Healing Ourselves and Transforming our Communities Through Mindfulness (2019), and a trained mindfulness teacher in the MBSR tradition. Rhonda has an MA in sociology in addition to the JD and is internationally recognized for her thought and practice leadership integrating mindfulness into education, law, and social change.

Susan Skjei

Susan Skjei is Director, Authentic Leadership Center, Naropa University, and a long-time Senior Teacher of meditation in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. She has been a Vice President and Chief Learning Officer in the technology sector and has taught mindfulness in business settings for over 20 years. Susan has a PhD in in Human and Organizational Systems from Fielding Graduate University.

Peter Weng

Peter Weng is CEO of Healthy Minds Innovations, an affiliated nonprofit dedicated to supporting the mission of the Center for Healthy Minds at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, which is to cultivate well-being and relieve suffering through a scientific understanding of the mind. He has over fifteen years experience in management roles in technology in the US, Europe, and China.

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