Advisory Board

Sarah Bowen, PhD

Sarah BowenSarah Bowen, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist, is Associate Professor at Pacific University in Portland, Oregon, where she specializes in mindfulness-based approaches for treatment of addictive and impulsive behaviors. Her research and more than 50 publications have focused on mechanisms of change and on treatment adaptations to best serve diverse populations and settings, with particular interests in dual diagnosis and underserved communities. Dr. Bowen facilitates and supervises mindfulness-based relapse prevention groups in numerous settings, including private and county treatment agencies, medical centers, and prisons. She presents, consults, and provides instruction internationally.

Andrea Grabovac, MD, FRCPC

Andrea Grabovac, MD, FRCPCAndrea Grabovac, MD, FRCPC is a Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of British Columbia. Her psychiatric practice focuses on inpatient psychiatry at Vancouver Hospital and outpatient psycho-oncology at the BC Cancer Agency. Beginning in 2006, she has been facilitating both group and individual mindfulness-based interventions for various clinical populations, including mood disorders, sexual medicine and oncology. In collaboration with Dr. Mark Lau, she developed and continues to facilitate a monthly Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy consultation course for MBCT clinicians since 2009. In addition, she supervises psychiatry residents and other mental health clinicians in the provision of MBCT and is an Associate Teacher at 5-day MBCT teacher trainings. Her academic publications explore the clinical relevance of re-contextualizing mindfulness based interventions within Buddhist psychological frameworks. She has a particular interest in the clinical relevance of the progressive development of meditative skills as described in the Theravadan stages of insight. Andrea is a co-investigator on two funded trials investigating MBCT adapted for women, and has co-authored MBCT treatment manuals for treatment of provoked vestibulodynia and low sexual desire in women. She is also an Associate Editor for the journal Mindfulness. She has practiced and studied in the Burmese Theravada Vipassana tradition since 2002. Andrea lives in Vancouver, Canada with her husband and their three children.

Steven Hickman, PsyD

Steven HickmanSteven Hickman, PsyD is a clinical psychologist and retired Associate Clinical Professor in the UC San Diego Departments of Family Medicine & Public Health and Psychiatry. He is the Founding Director of the UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness and the Executive Director of the non-profit Center for Mindful Self-Compassion. Dr. Hickman teaches Mindful Self-Compassion around the world and trains teachers of that program and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, in addition to speaking and teaching on the topic of teaching mindfulness-based programs. Steve is particularly interested in supporting men in developing greater self-compassion and mindfulness and is involved in projects to develop these capacities in Olympic-class athletes, first-responders and active duty military.

Mark A. Lau PhD, R Psych

Mark A. Lau PhD, R Psych is a registered psychologist in private practice at the Vancouver CBT Centre, a Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of British Columbia, a Founding Fellow of both the Academy of Cognitive Therapy and the Canadian Association of Cognitive and Behaviour Therapies and a Certified Trainer/Consultant of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy. Mark has over 20 years experience offering MBCT (and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT)) in both group and individual formats. He has also trained mental health professionals in MBCT & CBT including single and multi-day professional MBCT trainings offered across North America, and abroad including Europe and Australia including. In addition, he has provided MBCT workshops to research administrators, researchers, lawyers and their support staff, academic staff and to the general public. He currently offers (along with Dr. Andrea Grabovac) a longitudinal consultation course for graduates of the 5-day MBCT Hollyhock professional training in Vancouver. He and Andrea have offered similar versions of this course for the past 6 years to mental health professionals looking for additional support in teaching MBCT. Mark was first introduced to MBCT in 1995 when he began working with Dr. Zindel Segal in Toronto to help conduct the first MBCT outcome study. He spent the next 11 years working with Dr. Segal before moving out to Vancouver in 2006. Mark has conducted research into the mechanisms underlying MBCT’s effectiveness, the development and validation of the Toronto Mindfulness Scale, and evaluating effective methods of disseminating MBCT, which has been published in scientific journals. Mark is an Associate Editor of the journal Mindfulness. Finally, he is registered to practice psychology in both British Columbia and Ontario.

Beth Mulligan, PA-C

Beth Mulligan, PA-CBeth Mulligan, PA-C is the Advisor for the MBSR Teacher Certification Program and a lead teacher trainer for the MBSR Teacher Training Intensive at UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness (UCSD CFM). Beth was an adjunct faculty for the UMASS Center for Mindfulness. She has been teaching MBSR for fifteen years at medical centers, universities and to diverse populations; from the critically ill, to non-profit organizations, the underserved, educators, and corporate leaders. She is also a certified MSC Teacher and teacher trainer. Beth has a background in primary care medicine as a Board Certified Physician Assistant and has practiced medicine for over 25 years. She is a senior Zen student of Roshi Charles Tenshin Fletcher at Yokoji Zen Mountain Center where she has lived in residence, and is the Guiding Dharma teacher at Insight Community of the Desert. 

Hugh O’Neill

Hugh O’Neill is co-owner of, and has studied and practiced meditation and yoga for more than 20 years. His many years of creative and management experience in the media industry, including significant time working in international news and documentary production, combined with his intensive training in Mindfulness Meditation programs enable him to skillfully relate the concepts and practices of mindfulness to a wide range of populations. Hugh has taught more than 80 MBSR courses and dozens of other mindfulness programs at universities, medical centers, corporations and government agencies including the US Navy. Hugh has also been a presenter at the International Scientific Conference on Mindfulness, is a regular event speaker, and is the lead mindfulness teacher in a number of clinical research projects. Hugh has trained in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction with the originator of the MBSR program, Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, Ph.D. He has studied and lived in residence at Yokoji Zen Mountain Center under the guidance of Zen Master Charles Tenshin Fletcher, Roshi, and is Certified as an MBSR teacher through the UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness.

Anne Twohig

Anne TwohigAnne Twohig lives in Ireland in the beautiful seaside town of Greystones, where she enjoys long walks by the sea and hiking in the hills of County Wicklow. She is a certified MBSR teacher and teacher trainer. She is the founder of the Centre for Mindfulness Ireland, which she established in 2007. Anne trained with the University of Massachusetts Medical School Center for Mindfulness (UMass CFM), and has been a member of their professional teaching faculty since 2014. During her years as a teacher trainer with UMass CFM, Anne has been the host for professional teacher trainings in Ireland as well as teaching with CFM in Ireland, Europe and in the US. Anne has extensive experience teaching mindfulness across a range of areas, including healthcare, education, non-profit organisations, prison services, and the corporate and banking sectors. She was the recipient of a Social Entrepreneurs Ireland award for her work in Mindfulness in Education.
Anne is passionate about offering support and guidance to the community of qualified MBSR teachers in Ireland and around the world. She is committed to encouraging ongoing teacher development in the form of mentoring, supervision and continued education. She is excited to be on the teaching faculty at the UCSD Center for Mindfulness and looks forward to being part of their professional teacher trainings in Europe.


Cassandra Vieten, PhD

Cassandra Vieten, Ph.D.Cassandra Vieten, Ph.D. is a licensed clinical psychologist and mind-body medicine researcher. In addition to providing strategic leadership at the Center for Mindfulness and Centers for Integrative Health, she also serves as Director of Research and Associate Scientist at the Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination at UC San Diego. Her research has focused on development and pilot testing of mindfulness-based interventions for substance dependence, obesity, mood disorders, improving psychological well-being, and increasing prosocial emotions and behaviors. This interest extended to developing and testing mindfulness-based approaches to prevention of postpartum depression in pregnant women, as well as "MAMAS" - a mindful eating and stress reduction intervention for overweight/obese low-income inner-city pregnant women, which showed not only reductions in stress for pregnant women, but also beneficial outcomes for their children, from immediately to 8 years postpartum. She has also been a leader in establishing empirically-based competencies for mental health professionals in the area of spiritual and religious diversity, including currently serving as co-chair of the American Psychological Association Division 36 Task Force on developing practice guidelines in this area. Her recent research has focused on development of virtual reality interventions to foster development of prosocial emotions such as empathy and compassion. She has authored three books, including Mindful Motherhood: Practical Tools for Staying Sane During Pregnancy and Your Child’s First Year and Spiritual and Religious Competencies for Psychologists and Mental Health Professionals. She has published numerous articles in scientific journals and is an internationally recognized keynote speaker and workshop leader.

Carolyn West, PhD

Carolyn West, Ph.D.Carolyn West, Ph.D. is a graduate of Northeastern University in Boston and has held faculty positions at American International College and Western New England University, both in Springfield, Massachusetts. A unifying thread of her rich and lengthy people-centered career has been the integration of her work in the areas of psychology and clinical practice, particularly with children and women, with her decades long mindfulness study and practice. Mindfulness has been central to her work across populations – with children and their families, as well as teachers, college students, and patients participating in cardiac rehabilitation. From 2005 through 2018, she was part of the teaching faculty at the Center for Mindfulness in Worcester, Massachusetts where she offered courses in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and, as a senior instructor, provided encouragement, mentoring and training to teachers across the world.

Grateful for her own teachers and experience, Carolyn views the mentoring relationship as one of remarkable intimacy, with encouragement and support provided in the context of a shared exploration of the landscape of teaching mindfulness. Her most influential mindfulness teachers continue to be her children and grandchildren.