Karma Sangha

Protecting the financial integrity, legal status and sangha community of Nalandabodhi to ensure the flourishing of dharma in the west.

Karma Sangha’s roles in the workings of Nalandabodhi U.S. are: 

  1. Overseeing the financial well being of Nalandabodhi U.S.
  2. Managing the legal work being done for and giving legal advice to Nalandabodhi U.S., the Centers, and the Study Groups of Nalandabodhi U.S. 
  3. Providing adequate financial resources via fundraising for Nalandabodhi International (NBI)
  4. Applying the necessary oversight to NBI’s activities to ensure that the policies and procedures established by the Board or NBUS are being followed

Karma Sangha supports the Chief Operating Officer in making NBI an effective organization, assesses Nalandabodhi U.S. activities, protects the assets of Nalandabodhi U.S., such as NalandaWest, provides financial oversight, and, lastly, ensures the legal and ethical integrity of Nalandabodhi U.S.

Karma Sangha (Board of Directors) U.S.

Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche is the founder and spiritual director of Nalandabodhi, and the President of the KS Board. Rinpoche has been teaching dharma since the age of 12 and is widely celebrated in the East and West for his engaging teaching style. He is the author of Emotional Rescue, Rebel Buddha, and many other books, and the Nalandabodhi curriculum materials. Rinpoche is a lineage holder in both of Indian and Tibetan

Buddhism’s two most profound traditions of meditation: Mahamudra and Dzogchen. A lover of music, art, and urban culture, Rinpoche is a poet, photographer, accomplished calligrapher, and visual artist. Rinpoche is also the founder of other non-profit organizations– Nitartha International, Nitartha Institute, and CAUSA.

Susan V. Busby, Co-Chair (svbusby@gmail.com)

Susan has been a student of Rinpoche since 2002. Before joining the Board, she had been the Director of Practice MCO, NB Connecticut Director, NB Connecticut Practice Coordinator, a member of the Sangha Retreat Organizing Committee, Winter Retreat Organizer, and organized and led the 2012 Pilgrimage to Myanmar and Sri Lanka. Susan lives in Connecticut with her two adult sons, Adam and Aiden. Susan is a divorce mediator by profession and runs her own law firm. She enjoys reading, hiking, dancing, being a practice instructor and hanging out with friends.

Kris Shaw, Co-Chair (Krisshawnb@gmail.com)

Kris has been a student of Rinpoche since 1997, and has been a co-director of Nalandabodhi Seattle. He is also a popular local study facilitator. Older students may remember Kris as the ever-cheerful van driver from Sangha Retreats past. Kris brings to the Board his institutional knowledge of Nalandabodhi, legal knowledge, compassion, and humor. Kris lives in Seattle with his wife Teresa and two beautiful young daughters Olivia and Alexis.

Wendy S. Pearson (wendy@nalandabodhi.org)

Wendy has been a student of Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche since 2003. Wendy has volunteered her services in the areas of finance and legal for the past 15 years with Nitartha Institute, Nalandabodhi Seattle, and Nalandabodhi US. For the past five years, she served as the Director of Finance for Nalandabodhi US. Wendy has been an attorney for too long to mention, advising Indian Tribal governments and nonprofit organizations. Wendy lives in Seattle, Washington with her wife of 35 years.

Ellen Balzé (ellenb@nalandabodhi.org)

Ellen became a student of Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche in 2015. She also works with the Path of Mindful Activity core team under the guidance of Mitra Mark Power. A clinical psychologist with a background in organizational consulting, she is trained in a form of psychotherapy based on Buddhist teachings. She has appreciated opportunities (and reminders) to pause, relax, and reflect serving with other East Coast Nalandabodhi members and folks across Nalandabodhi on retreats and local projects. She enjoys baking bread and caring for succulents. Ellen lives in Philadelphia with her husband.

Dave Gannon (dave@nalandabodhi.org)

Dave became a formal student of Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche in 2013. He has been the Director of Finance for Nalandabodhi Colorado since 2016. In his 20’s, Dave worked as a counselor at a minimum-security correctional facility, where he assisted previously incarcerated offenders. Later, after graduating with an MBA from the University of Colorado, he pursued a career in finance.

Dave worked in corporate treasury management at several large public companies for the last twenty years. Dave and his wife are the parents of twin college students, a dog, a cat, and two beehives. They all enjoy living near the Rocky Mountains.

George Beckwith (gbbeckwith@nalandabodhi.org) George became a student of Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche in 2009 and is a practice instructor and facilitator at Nalandabodhi New York. He recently retired from a long career in architecture with a specialization in historic preservation and adaptive reuse. With his wife Wendy Miller, a fellow sangha member and painter, they have a 26-year-old son who is a graphic designer. George plays fingerstyle and jazz guitar and enjoys cooking, birding, hiking, and living in the Hudson Valley and New York City.

Betsy Dain (betsy.dain@gmail.com)

Betsy has been a student of Rinpoche since 2014. She is the practice coordinator for Akasha and a practice instructor. A retired librarian, Betsy works in Adult Literacy and as a Hospice Volunteer. She lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina with her husband of 46 years, Wes. She enjoys reading, cooking, walking in the woods, and Face Timing with her two far-flung daughters.

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