All faculty members are Registered Yoga Teachers, having completed at least a 200-hour, and in the majority of cases a 500-hour, course of Yoga instruction approved by The Yoga Alliance. (The Yoga Alliance is the only national organization which qualifies Yoga courses and teachers in the United States.) All Yoga faculty also have a minimum of 5 years, and many have 20-30 years, of teaching experience. The School of Yoga offers certification (non-degree) programs, and all faculty are well qualified to teach at this level.
Bhavani Siegel has been a student of yoga as taught by Baba Hari Dass for over thirty years. She is coordinator of Mount Madonna Center’s residential work/study program, “Yoga, Service and Community,” where participants experience the daily routines of living in a community dedicated to the principles of yoga. Bhavani teaches yoga, meditation practice and philosophy and has a special area of interest and study in the realm of Sacred Sound, Sanskrit, and Mantra in the yogic tradition. In addition to teaching at Mount Madonna Center programs, seasonal retreats and Yoga Teacher Training, she offers classes at the Yoga Teacher Training program in Salt Spring Centre of Yoga in British Columbia, Canada. She received an Early Childhood Education Credential from Cabrillo College, Aptos, Ca. in 1976 and was Head Teacher and Co-Director of pre-school and early childhood education programs from 1976 until 1994.
Brajesh Gerald Friedberg, B.A., Cornell University, 1960; Ph.D., Harvard University, 1965; Assistant Professor, Political Science, University of California, Davis, 1964-68; Associate Professor, Fordham University, 1968-70; founder-director, The Lorillard Children’s School, 1969-70; co-founder-director, Arrakis Educational Center, 1970-71; member, The Village community, 1972-73; member, The Land community 1973-74; homesteader in the Ozark mountains, 1974-78; staff member, Mount Madonna Center, 1978-present; Program Director, MMC, 1981-present; 19 years on the MMC Board of Directors; Principal, Mount Madonna School, 1984-85 to 1989-90; administrator, Mount Madonna School, 1980-1984 and 1990-2002; teacher at yoga retreats, in yoga teacher training programs at the 200 and 500 hour levels, to students in the Yoga, Service, and Community program, and in talks to other groups, offering talks and classes which include Ashtanga Yoga, Meditation, Pranayama, Yoga and Social Responsibility, Karma Yoga, Gandhi and the Gita and Teaching Yoga – 1979-present.
Dayanand John Diffenbaugh received his BA degree in Religious Studies (cum laude) from UCSC in 1971. Dayanand has been a student of Master Yogi, Baba Hari Dass since 1973, when he began studying the Yoga sutras in depth. Since 1980 Dayanand has been teaching Patanjali's Yoga Sutras alongside Baba Hari Dass at weekly classes and at Mount Madonna Center’s Yoga Teacher Training programs. He has also taught classes on the yoga sutras at Salt Spring Center in BC, Canada, at the Ashtanga Yoga Fellowship in Toronto, Canada and at the University of Californa, Santa Cruz. He wrote the introduction for and edited The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, A Study Guide for Book I, Samadhai Pada with Translation and Commentary by Baba Hari Dass, published by Sri Rama Publishing, 1999. Dayanand aims towards inspiring all levels of practitioners with the wisdom and depth of these ancient sutras. He combines traditional sutra study with experiential exercises which include wilderness walks and outdoor meditations. He has taught classes on the yoga sutras at Salt Spring Center in BC, Canada, at the Ashtanga Yogag Fellowhip in Toronto, Canada and at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Dayanand is a founding member of Mount Madonna center and served as its Director since its inception in 1978. He is a board member of the Mount Madonna Center and Mount Madonna Institute and a Trustee of Sri Ram Foundation in India.
Janardan Kieran Farley has been a practitioner of yoga since 1972 and has been a student of Master Yogi Sri Baba Hari Dass since 1974. Janardan received a B.A. in Psychology and Science from San Jose State University. He has been a resident of Mount Madonna Center since its inception in March, 1978 serving the community as a Personnel Administrator, Construction Supervisor, Yoga Instructor, Pujari (priest) of Vedic Ceremonies, and Head of Development and Operation of the Sankat Mochan Hanuman Temple Complex. His primary area of study and teaching for Mount Madonna Center is focused on Ashtanga Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Tantra Yoga, and Vedic Rituals. He has served as a Board Member of the Sri Ram Foundation for many years and has been actively engaged in the Sri Ram Orphanage Project in India since 1984.
Jaya Maxon has been a Yoga instructor since 1975, beginning with the earliest Hanuman Fellowship retreats. She continues to coordinate the yoga retreats at Mount Madonna Center and has been coordinator of the YTT 200 program since its inception in 1981. She began her training in yoga in 1974 when she became a student of Baba Hari Dass, learning the methods of Hatha Yoga and Ashtanga Yoga directly from him and from the earliest of his students in this country. Since 1975 she has been teaching the practices of Ashtanga and Hatha Yoga including purification practices (shat karma), postures (asana), breathing practices (pranayama), and meditation (dhyana) as well as yoga theory classes that support the understanding of yoga philosophy and practice. Jaya has also served for many years as Office Manager at Mount Madonna Center and has been the Advertising Director since 1989. She has also been serving as a Board Member of Mount Madonna Center since 1985 and currently manages the office of Sri Ram Foundation.
Kalpana Iris Kachuck, Ph.D. in Science and Mathematics Education, University of California, Berkeley, 1988; M.A.in Mathematics Education, University of California, Santa Cruz, 1983; and B.A., Math and Psychology, from the University of California, Santa Cruz, 1978. Kalpana also holds a California Community College Instructor Credential: Valid, Life and a California Ryan K-12 Teaching Credential, University of California, Santa Cruz, 1978. Kalpana has held various positions in the field of education in both research and teaching. Since 1987 she has been a mathematics professor, (developmental specialist) at Evergreen Valley College, San Jose, Ca. Since 1980, Kalpana as been a resident staff member and Yoga Instructor at Mount Madonna Center and is a coordinator and lead instructor for the student teaching portion of the YTT 200 hour program. Her classes include the Eight Limbs of Ashtanga Yoga, Hand Mudras and Psychology of Learning. She has served on the Board of Directors for Mount Madonna Center for many years and continues to be on the Board of Directors at Mount Madonna School. Since 1998 she has been on the board of Sri Ram Foundation which administers Sri Ram Orphanage in India.
Kamalesh Ginger Hooven has been a student of Baba Hari Dass since 2003. She was exposed to yoga during her studies of Philosophy and Psychology at the University of Memphis from 1968-1974. In Washington DC in the early 1980s, she delved into yoga meditation. In 2000 while living in Guatemala, her 50th birthday and a longtime friend inspired Kamalesh to begin her daily yoga practice in earnest. She soon opened a yoga studio to share the practices with others. Kamalesh came to Mount Madonna Center in early 2002 to participate in the Yoga Research and Education Center two-year, 700-hour Yoga Teacher Training (2002-2003) led by Georg Feurstein. Inspired even more by a yoga based community, later that same year she moved her family to Mount Madonna Center. Kamalesh completed the YREC program, studying asana with Patricia Walden, John Friend, Judith Lasater and Richard Rosen. Since 2003, Kamalesh has been teaching at Mount Madonna Center in weekly classes, workshops, retreats and Yoga Teacher Training Programs. Her passion is helping students find “stirum sukum asanum” (strength and ease in a posture) and her continuing study of anatomy and physiology enriches her classes. Kamalesh is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Ayurveda at Mount Madonna Institute. She is coordinator of the 200 hour modular and the 500 hour Yoga Teacher Trainings.
Kranti Mailliard is a long-time resident of Mount Madonna Center and has studied and practiced Ashtanga Yoga since 1975. She has taught at Hanuman Fellowship and Mount Madonna Center yoga retreats for 25 years and particularly enjoys teaching the Advanced Meditation Sadhana which provides the foundation of the morning practice at many of the retreats as well as weekend workshops. She co-leads yoga intensive programs which have included the five day, “Going Deeper in the Summertime,” “Thanksgiving Retreat for Women” and “Women and Spirituality.” She is especially interested in the relationship between the spiraling ascent of consciousness, enlightenment, and the selfless mind— how does that relate to the natural arising of the bodhisattva vow of selfless service to all creation? Kranti earned a B.A. Art Degree from San Jose State University. She has been a prop builder and a costume designer for the Ramayana theatrical production for the past 20 years. Kranti is also a graphics designer and a cook in the Mount Madonna Center kitchen.
Lirio Ohlson was exposed to yoga at a young age and committed herself to a daily practice in her early teens. She has studied the Ashtanga Yoga system taught Baba Hari Dass for the last twenty years. She has instructed yoga to practitioners of different ages and abilities for the last 15 years. Her goal is to make yoga available and accessible to all people regardless of physical ability or aptitude.
Mangala Norskog Aguirre is a student of Baba Hari Dass, and continues to "teach to learn." For many years, Mangala has taught asana and breathing exercises to people of all ages in a variety of settings which include spas, yoga studios, gyms and the county jail. She completed the Mount Madonna Center Yoga Teacher Training in 1996, apprenticed in the program 1997-98, and has been a senior staff instructor since 1999. Mangala’s teaching style integrates aspects of devotional intention, anatomical reference and subtle body physiology into classical methods of asana, pranayama, and meditation practice. She leads weekend workshops in “Asana and Sacred Sound” and serves on the Yoga Administration for Pacific Cultural Center in Santa Cruz. She is a Certified Massage Practitioner and a Registered Nurse.
Pratibha Melissa Queen received a B.A. in History from the University of Washington (1966) and a Counseling Certificate through UC Extension (1986). Yoga and Ayurveda have been central to her life since meeting Baba Hari Dass in 1976. She served as Resident Manager, Pacific Cultural Center and Ashtanga Yoga Institute from 1997-2005. She completed Yoga Teacher Training at MMC in 1981 and is a Registered Yoga Teacher (500) since 2002. Her yoga teaching focus is in the area of Gentle and Restorative Yoga. She is a participating teacher in the weekend Spring Retreat for Women at MMC (1997-2006). She began the study of Ayurveda with Baba Hari Dass in 1980 and has also studied with Dr. Robert Svoboda, Dr. Trivedi, Dr. Marc Halpern and Dr. Vasant Lad. She graduated from the California College of Ayurveda in 2004, as a Clinical Ayurveda Specialist and currently maintains a small clinical practice in Santa Cruz. Her classes at Yoga Teacher Training include “Introduction to Ayurveda,” “Prana and Asana,” “Restorative Yoga,” and “Ayurveda and Asana.” She is currently serving as a board member of Mount Madonna Institute.
Prem Dass Jim Rohan, B.A.Mathematics (honors) UCSC; M.A.Education (Secondary Science) SJSU; Multiple Subjects California Teaching Credential (elementary school) UCSC; Single Subject California Teaching Credential (mathematics) UCSC. Prem Dass began teaching yoga after participating in a yoga retreat with Baba Hari Dass in Miami, Florida in January 1975. He taught Ashtanga Yoga at the Temple of Yoga in Coconut Grove, Florida from 1975-1981 which included classes for adults, children and youth-at-risk and he also taught asana in the context of a Montessori pre-school /kindergarten. Prem Dass completed Mount Madonna Center’s Yoga teachers training in 1980 and in 1981 moved to Watsonville, California where he continued to teach yoga to children in the classroom. Since 1985 he continues to teach the “Introduction to Ashtanga Yoga” weekly classes at Mount Madonna Center which include pranayama, meditation and asana and teaches at Mount Madonna Center retreats. Prem Dass teaches a specialty class in “Teaching Yoga to Children” at MMC’s Yoga Teacher Training (200 hour level). Prem Dass is one of the Pujaris (priests) and caretakers of the Hanuman Temple located at Mount Madonna Center and a long time Math and Science teacher at Mount Madonna Middle and High School.
Radha Mallery has been a student and practitioner of Ashtanga (Eight Limbed) Yoga as taught by Baba Hari Dass since 1971. Her initial interest was to find a spiritual practice that would infuse all aspects of her life with awareness and service. Asthanga Yoga continues to fulfill that initial intention. Radha has taught Ashtanga Yoga, including breathing exercises (pranayama), meditation and asana in various settings including local colleges, service organizations, Pacific Cultural Center and Mt. Madonna Center since 1974. At Mount Madonna Center’s Yoga Teacher Traiing program Radha has taught class on sound meditation (Nada Yoga), on meditative asana and on how to teach a beginning yoga class. She also has been a yoga teacher in Mount Madonna’s ‘Women’s Spring Ayurveda and Yoga retreat since its inception in 1996. Since 1987 Radha has cofacilitated/taught the Going Deeper program created by Baba Hari Dass, a silent retreat in a secluded environment at MMC. Radha serves on the membership committee of Hanuman Fellowship/Mount Madonna Center. She has been the Director of Volunteer Servicess for the Hospice Caring Project in Santa Cruz, Ca. since 1998.
Ratna Jennifer Sturz, MA in Counseling from Santa Clara University (Health Psychology emphasis) and a BA in political science from Washington University, St. Louis. Ratna has been a student of Baba Hari Dass since 1974 and has taught at Mount Madonna Center’s Yoga Teacher Training programs and retreats for over 30 years. Classes include the traditional limbs of Ashtanga Yoga as well Bhakti Yoga Theory, Ethics and Values in Teaching, Limbs of Raja, Ashtanga and Hatha Yoga and the Background of Yoga. She has particular interest in the ways yoga continues to evolve and unfold, especially within modern Western culture. As Director of Pacific Cultural Center in Santa Cruz, Ca, Ratna helped form the Ashtanga Yoga Institute, which has offered daily yoga and meditation classes since 1991. She is a founding member of Mount Madonna Center and a board member of Mount Madonna Center and Mount Madonna Institute. She has a private practice in counseling and yoga therapy.
Sadanand Ward Mailliard graduated from Taft Preparatory School, Watertown, Connecticut in 1965 and from the University of North Carolina with a B.A. in English, 1969. A practitioner of yoga and student of Indian philosophy for the past 30 years, Sadanand has a deep interest in understanding how best to build bridges between cultures and between the spiritual and practical aspects of life. He has spent several years editing Baba Hari Dass’ commentary on the Bhagavad Gita and has an abiding interest in understanding the Gita and exploring its relevance to modern life. For over 25 years he has been teaching at Mount Madonna Center retreats and at Mount Madonna Yoga Teacher training programs. Other classes include the Background of Yoga with emphasis on the Vedas and Subtle Body Theory. He has served for the past twenty-nine years as President of the Hanuman Fellowship, the non-profit organization which sponsors Mount Madonna Center and is one of the founders of Mount Madonna Center. Sadanand also works with Mount Madonna School where he has been developing and teaching innovative values-oriented curriculums since 1991. He serves as Vice President of the Sri Ram Foundation, which supports an orphanage, school and medical clinic in Northern India where he serves as a Trustee.
Sarada Diffenbaugh, Ph.D. has been a student of Baba Hari Dass since 1971 and is an editor of his yoga writings. Sarada has developed the curriculum for the Bhagavad Gita program in YTT 500 and also teaches classes on the Yoga Sutras, Concentration, Pranayam and Advanced Meditation. Sarada received her Doctor of Philosophy Degree from Stanford University in 1992, an MA degree from San Jose State, a BA degree from UCSC, a state of California Lifetime California Teaching Credential for K-12 and a State of California, Reading Specialist Credential. She is a founding Member, Administrator and teacher in both Mount Madonna Center and Mount Madonna School and has been principal of Mount Madonna School since 1989. She has been a board member of Sri Ram Foundation since 1994 and President since 2000.
Soma Goresky is a student of Baba Hari Dass and has been teaching methods of pranayama and meditation techniques to visitors of Mount Madonna Center of over 15 years. She is inspired by the experience of “teaching to learn.” She works with the principle that the depth of our understanding of the practices is based on “Regular Sadhana (practice)” and strives to help students be successful in making formal spiritual practice a part of their daily lives. Soma also has undertaken in depth study of the yoga philosophy as presented in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras an teaches and leads study groups exploring these ancient principles. Soma is a musician, past musical director for Hanuam Productions’ Ramayana and helps with the musical recordings and offerings at Mount Madonna Center. She serves on the Mount Madonna Center Board of Directors. Soma is also a geological engineer.
Vishwamitra David Prisk has been a student of Baba Hari Dass since 1972. As a teacher of Ashtanga Yoga for more than 30 years he has taught beginning, intermediate and advanced level classes in Asana, Pranayama and Meditation for the Hanuman Fellowship at seasonal Yoga Retreats, Yoga Teacher Training and weekly ongoing classes at the Mount Madonna Center. Additionally, he has taught yoga classes in the local community for the Ashtanga Yoga Institute at the Pacific Cultural Center, through Adult Education at both Cabrillo College and UCSC, and for the “Outside - In” yoga teaching program at San Quentin State Prison in Marin County, CA. He has enjoyed creative expression as an actor, director and scenic designer for several local community theatre companies including Hanuman Productions and their rendition of the Ramayana and numerous presentations of stories written by Baba Hari Dass portraying the journey from bondage to enlightenment. He received a B.S. degree in Business and Industrial Management from San Jose State University in 1967 and works as a Staffing Consultant to High Technology industries. Vishwamitra is still a student of Yoga and “teaches to learn”.
Marshall Aditya Keneipp has a deep and long standing interest in wisdom traditions and the practical application of spiritual methods for self-realization. He has studied yoga and other spiritual disciplines for over 40 years, and was first introduced to meditation and yoga in 1969. He has had a daily practice since. He has been a student of the teaching of Baba Hari Dass for 14 years, and has studied with Dr. Saraswati Buhrman, Kamalesh Hooven and other senior teachers at Mount Madonna Center (MMC). He is currently participating in a meditation research group with senior members of the MMC community exploring the application of meditation in wellness and therapeutic applications. Aditya teaches yoga, breathing exercises, meditation and the philosophical foundations of classical yoga at MMC and the Pacific Cultural Center (PCC). He completed a 265 hour yoga teacher training program in 2003 at the Prana Yoga and Ayurveda Mandala in Denver, Colorado and a 500 hour advanced yoga teacher training program in 2011 at MMC. His daily practice includes yoga, breathing exercises and meditation.
Badri Dass, Ph.D is a long-time student of Baba Hari Dass (since 1974) and practicing psychotherapist (since 1978). He earned his M.A. in Marriage, Family and Child Counseling in 1976 from the American Academy of Family Studies (since subsumed by JFK University) and became licensed in 1978 as an LMFCC. Badri earned his Ph.D in clinical psychology in 1986 from Pacific Graduate School of Psychology (now Palo Alto University) and became licensed as a clinical psychologist (#PSY 10312) in 1988. Badri has taught yoga (primarily meditation, pranayama, psychology and philosophy) since 1975 and has been a teacher in Mount Madonna Center's yoga teachers training since its inception. Badri integrates his experience in Jungian psychology, Buddhism, and Advaita philosophy and practice with traditional Ashtanga Yoga.
Purnima Cathy Conway has studied classical Ashtanga Yoga with Baba Hari Dass and the Mount Madonna community since 1996. As a resident staff member and Yoga instructor at Mount Madonna Center, Purnima embraces Babaji's concept of "teach to learn" and continues to deepen her understanding of yoga philosophy and ancient scriptures. Her classes include the eight limbs of Ashtanga Yoga with a focus on cultivating the Yamas & Niyamas to attain peace, hand mudras, mantra and sacred sound, and asana and sound. Purnima is a musician and leads kirtan and Vedic chanting at MMC retreats and events. She teaches pranayama and meditation at the 200 and 300 level Yoga Teacher Trainings and regular classes at the Center. Purnima hold a B.S. in Communication from Walden University (2012) and a M.S. in Non-Profit Management (2016) from Northeastern University.