Since childhood, I’ve felt compelled to make the world a better place. I was surrounded by people who modelled this in their values and actions. My persistent desire to make life better for all people led me on a path through the business world, humanitarian development, faith communities, and healthcare. Each has been a stepping stone toward this place of compassion research and education.
I’ve both seen and experienced moments of great compassion and, sadly, times when compassion was palpably absent. I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about compassion as a shared human value. However, thinking wasn’t enough. I needed to do something.
I’m the kind of person who prefers a hands-on approach. I’d rather be in the action than looking on. And so, I resigned my executive role in healthcare to pursue doctoral studies at the University of Calgary with a leading compassion researcher Dr. Shane Sinclair. It has been a journey through neuroscience, philosophy, and psychology. Research and knowledge translation are my avenue for better understanding the how and why of compassion in various contexts and helping others catalyze compassion in their lives, organizations, communities, and our world.
I’m honoured to be among a growing community of compassion researchers. I’ve so enjoyed connecting with the work of faculty at Stanford University and being accredited as a Certified Teacher for Compassion Cultivation Training, an evidence-based tool to grow a people’s capacity for compassion even in the face of difficult circumstances. Together, in partnership with individuals and organizations, we bring research into practice to transform the suffering and challenges that are part of our human experience. We ease individual suffering. We bridge divides. We build community.
I hope you will join me in this movement. We all need compassion and compassion is in us to give!