A Masters of Divinity graduate at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, AJ interned at Pace e Bene in 2005-2006, where she worked with the Engage program. In addition to her training for Christian ministry, AJ has been practicing Buddhism in the Order of Interbeing, a form of Buddhism developed by Thich Nhat Hanh, a Vietnamese Zen teacher, poet, activist, and Nobel Peace Prize Nominee. AJ has practiced in Order of Interbeing tradition for 10 years and ordained in 2002. AJ sees meditation and mindfulness as a vehicle to cultivate peace in our daily lives so that in turn, there will be more peace on our planet.
Most recently, AJ is from Missoula, Montana where she was a leader with Open Way Sangha and involved in offering meditation and mindfulness practice in Montana’s state prisons. Since moving to the Bay Area, AJ continues to lead and practice with sanghas in the area. In conjunction with the United Church of Christ clergy in Missoula, AJ co-lead a Buddhist/Christian retreat and contemplative backpacking trip into Montana’s wilderness.
AJ’s undergraduate work was focused on Latin America and wrote an honor’s thesis on farm workers in the sugar cane industry in Brazil. AJ lived in Brazil for 2 years. AJ has many passions and some of them are hiking, backpacking, meditating, sitting silent retreats, singing and playing music casually, throwing a Frisbee, gardening, and sharing a meal and conversation with friends.