Meditation Instructors and Shastris

(senior teachers)

Coordinator, Meditation Instructors: instructors@shambhalaottawa.ca.

Shastri Henry Chapin. After several years of Zen practice, Henry became a student of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche in 1977 and was a founding member and director of the Ottawa Shambhala Centre. He has been a meditation instructor and teacher since 1978, and was appointed a regional shastri, or senior teacher, by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche in 2010. Henry is also involved in prison outreach and hospital chaplaincy activities. henrychapin
Shastri Bozica Costigliola first sat down to meditate at a Shambhala Training weekend retreat in Montreal in 1981. She connected immediately with the simplicity and honesty of meditation practice, and the teachings on basic goodness. Bozica has been a Shambhala meditation instructor and teacher since 1985. She is a former co-director of the Ottawa Shambhala Meditation Centre and was appointed a shastri (senior teacher) for Ottawa by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche in 2016. She is also involved in prison outreach at the Ottawa Carleton Detention Centre. bozicacostigliola
Mark Frutkin has been a meditator for about forty years. He is a senior teacher of Shambhala and a Meditation Instructor. Currently qualified to direct Levels I-IV and the Dignity levels of Shambhala Training, he is a former Director of Shambhala Ottawa, and a former Warrior of the Centre. He is also the author of thirteen books of fiction, non-fiction and poetry. markfrutkin
Suzanne Schecter Côté has been a Shambhala meditator since 1986. A meditation instructor and teacher of Shambhala, since 1994, she is also a translator of dharma and coordinates French translations in North America collaborating actively with the translation group in France. She has held numerous positions of responsibility in the Ottawa and Montreal Shambhala Centres, including Director of Practice and Education. She currently serves as Dean of meditation instructors and guides. Suzanne
Jessica Ouvrard started to meditate in 1991. After several years of sporadic practice she threw herself into the practice and study of the Shambhala Training path, followed in quick succession by a dathün, Sutrayana and then Vajrayana Seminaries. She has also practiced kyudo and ikebana. She has been a meditation instructor and assistant director for Shambhala Training since 1999. jessicaouvrard
Alexis Shotwell has been a student of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche since 1994, and a meditation instructor and teacher since 2000. By happy accident, she’s been involved with the Shambhala community since birth, the child of two practitioners in this lineage. Alexis is part of Queer Dharma at the Centre, a kasung, and was recently Director of Practice and Education. alexisshotwell
Pascal Machado started meditating in Shambhala centres in 1994, at the age of 19. In 1996, he met Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche and then completed the Shambhala curriculum of practice and study. A meditation instructor since 2002, Pascal has done many group and solitary retreats. Now a father of two young children, Pascal is mostly active at the Centre within the Dorje Kasung. He is also one of the Centre’s librarians. pascalmachado
Don Adams was introduced to meditation through a day-long workshop held by the Ottawa Shambhala Centre in 1999. That same year he began coming to the Centre taking courses and doing the Shambhala Training weekends. In 2008 he became a trained Shambhala Teacher and Meditation Instructor. He is currently a student of the Sakyong, pursuing the Scorpion Seal path. donadams
Sarah Shima began meditating in 1998 and has been a member of the Ottawa Shambhala Centre since she moved to Ottawa in 2003. Sarah became a Shambhala Guide in 2005, and has been a meditation instructor since 2009. As well as teaching at the Centre, Sarah regularly teaches basic meditation to staff and clients at The Ottawa Hospital Rehabilitation Centre. sarahshima
David Fowler began meditating in 2001 and quickly fell in love with the local centre and Karmê Chöling. He spent the summer of 2005 at Shambhala Mountain Centre attending 4 programs including the first Ridgen Abhisheka. David has been a meditation instructor and teacher since 2006. He was one of the founding members of Queer Dharma in Ottawa and is pleased that it has started up again. David has had many roles including director of the Ottawa Shambhala Centre and is currently finance officer. davidfowler
Heather Arnold has been a Shambhala meditation instructor and assistant director since 2009, and a Shambhala guide since 2004. Heather joined the Fredericton, NB, Shambhala community in 1997, after a year of exploring meditation and Buddhism in India and Sri Lanka. She has been an active member of Shambhala centres in Canada and Europe and truly appreciates the opportunity to deepen her path of practice, study and service by working with fellow meditation students in Ottawa. heatherarnorld

Shambhala Path Meditation Instructors

Instructors are particularly trained to support students who are on the Shambhala training path.

Cathy Baerg was first drawn to meditation and the teachings at the Ottawa Shambhala Centre in 1998 and now serves as a Shambhala Path Meditation Instructor. She has been involved with the Centre in roles such as program coordinator, dorje kasung, shrine-keeper and is currently the membership coordinator. Cathy is grateful for the rich experiences received through programs offered at the local centre and the land centres. She recently attended Sacred World Assembly and Rigden Abhisheka. cathybaerg
Katrina Burton came to Shambhala in 2010. Because her life at the time was frustrating and stressful, she was attracted to meditation and spiritual principles. Wanting more from life, she threw herself into practice and study. Ever since, she actually looks for opportunities to test, practice and ultimately to embody the teachings. Today, Katrina is an active participant at the Centre. She often gives meditation instruction at Open Houses, leads discussions on video teachings, and as Shambhala Path Meditation Instructor she co-teaches some classes. She finds real joy in connecting with people and is looking forward to meeting new students on the path. Katrina
Loretta C. first became interested in meditation in her university days, but it didn’t really stick then. She rediscovered it while in her first real-world job in 1995 at the Vancouver Shambhala Centre, but then moved to Yellowknife and was way too busy and stressed to meditate…until a friend told her about the Shambhala meditation group there and she re-discovered it again in 2004, which is when it finally stuck. When she moved to Ottawa in 2006, Loretta immediately found and joined the Ottawa Shambhala Centre and has been a member ever since. She has been a member of the Council, and is involved in coordinating and staffing programs at the Centre, as well as being one of the facilitators for the Queer Dharma group. She has been a Shambhala Guide since 2012 and in April 2016 became a Shambhala Path Meditation Instructor. Loretta
Sheila Craig walked into the Ottawa Shambhala Centre in 1996 and knew at once that she was home. The view of Shambhala and Mahayana Buddhism, that we work on ourselves so we can be of help to others, resonate with her deeply. Not long after joining Shambhala, Sheila became a mother, and thus she has walked the paths of Shambhala and parenting together. Sheila became a Shambhala Path Meditation Instructor in 2016. In 2003 Sheila started the Bodhi School children’s program at the Ottawa Shambhala Centre, which she taught for 8 years. Sheila is a dedicated yoga practitioner and former yoga teacher. She also loves gardening and ikebana (Japanese flower arranging). sheilacraig
Jessie-Lee Wallace started regularly attending classes at the Ottawa Shambhala Centre in 2005. She is passionate about making the teachings accessible to different groups of people, especially children. Jessie-Lee is currently a Shambhala Path Meditation Instructor and co-coordinator of family programs at the Centre. JessieLee

Shambhala Guides

In addition to being trained to give initial instruction, a Shambhala Guide is a resource, friend, and host to newcomers within the context of Shambhala Centre educational programs and events.

Joanne Alexander was introduced to Shambhala meditation in 2008 at the Mississauga Centre. She has completed courses up to Enlightened Society Assembly at various meditation centres. She has also completed four weeks of group meditation (four weekthuns). Since coming to Ottawa in September 2013, Joanne has, from time to time, assisted with centre communications and has coordinated some of the program offerings. She derives great satisfaction from instructing individuals in meditation practice. Joanne
Heather Anderson began meditating as a way to reduce stress during a very intense academic year at Queens. After moving to Ottawa, she tried several different types of meditation from various traditions and found a home at Shambhala. Through the Shambhala teachings, Heather has found meditation to be a powerful antidote to many challenges in her life and the teachings have brought her to a life-long unfold spiritual path. Outside of being a Shambhala guide and the volunteer manager of the Ottawa Shambhala bookstore, Heather is a certified Integral Professional Coach, a policy advisor for the federal government and she enjoys the constant challenge of finding balance in her full life. Heather Anderson
A. J. Ashe connected with the Shambhala Meditation group in Antigonish, Nova Scotia in 2001. He learned meditation and spent the next several years immersing himself in Shambhala culture via programs and study. A.J. is a Shambhala Guide, and has held volunteer positions in Nova Scotia, Ottawa, and for the community at large. A.J. is interested in creating opportunities for persons of diverse origins, and those under 40 to learn meditation. ajashe
Michael Davis has been a member of the Shambhala community since the early 1990s. He was with the Toronto Shambhala Centre until he moved to Ottawa in 2005. He is a software developer by trade, and aspires to be an amateur composer. He maintains the Centre’s email lists, and has been a Shambhala Guide since 2003. michaeldavis
Guy Coulombe joined the Ottawa Shambhala Centre in early 2008, attracted by Shambhala Buddhism. He almost immediately became a volunteer and has held various volunteer positions. He participated in the Way of Shambhala programs and took Buddhist courses. He did a one-month retreat (dathün) and also a few solitary meditation retreats. He gives meditation instructions as a Shambhala Guide. guycoulombe
Lucie Gauvreau discovered the Montreal Shambhala Centre in 2000 and became a member of the Ottawa Centre in 2005. A meditation practitioner for 20 years, she has examined many philosophies and religions guided by her spiritual quest. Buddhism being her priority, she has studied all the programs of the Sacred Path of Shambhala and she is now eager to work toward creating enlightened society. She has been responsible for various administrative roles and she is now Director of Practice and Education. In 2016, she became a guide and participated in the Sacred World Assembly. Lucie
Lynn MacDonald has been a student of Shambhala Buddhism and a member of the Ottawa Shambhala Meditation Centre since the early 1980’s. Lynn has provided meditation instruction as a Shambhala Guide since the autumn of 2014. Over the years she has volunteered with the Centre in various capacities such as program coordinator, staffing various programs, council member and currently as Centre director. Lynn is grateful for the rich, relevant, inspiring teachings offered through Shambhala and aspires to reach out into the community. Lynn
Tejumo Ogouma was introduced to meditation in Montreal in the late 1990s, he became a serious practitioner in 2002 after attending a weekend retreat. Tejumo joined the Ottawa Shambhala Centre in 2003, and has since completed several advanced programs and retreats. He is now a Scorpion Seal practitioner. He has a strong interest in the Shambhala Arts: he studies and teaches Miksang (contemplative photography), and practices Ikebana (Japanese flower arranging). Tejumo is a Shambhala Guide and was director of the Ottawa Shambhala Centre. As of September 2016, he will be on leave from the Centre and working in Mali. tejumoogouma
Chantal Tremblay began meditating in 2005 when she was living abroad and after a short visit home, participated in her first level of Shambhala Training. During these two years away from a Shambhala Centre and an instructor, she was still able to develop a regular daily practice. In 2007, upon her return to Canada, she continued with Shambhala Training up to Golden Key. She joined the Ottawa Centre the following year, took refuge and participated in many programs offered in Ottawa and Montreal. She also attended a number of weekthüns (one-week retreats) and became a guide in 2011. Chantal coordinates francophone programs in Ottawa. chantaltremblay
Denis Sarrazin‘s first encounter with Shambhala was through reading Trungpa Rinpoche’s biography written by François Midal. He has been a member of the Ottawa Shambhala Centre since 2010 and has occupied various volunteer positions including WOS-1 Coordinator.  Denis has gone through the Way of Shambhala training as well as a number of retreats and assemblies. He is currently Rusung for the Ottawa Dorje Kasung squad. Now as a Guide, he wishes to offer meditation instructions to newcomers to the Centre.  Denis
Diane Sarrazin first came to the Ottawa Shambhala Centre to meditate in 2009. The continued warmth and generosity of the people at the Centre made her want to be part of the sangha. She began to study in the Shambhala path and became a member in 2010. She volunteered in many roles including coordinator of all public programs for two years. Although she studied in other traditions (Bön, Nyingma and Gelukpa), she has done many 1-2 week retreats including a 5-day Nyungne (fasting silent retreat), she has chosen to continue on the Shambhala path. Diane serves as Kasung, Shambhala Guide and is currently the Director of Societal Health and Well-Being at the Ottawa Centre. Diane