Candi Martinez Carthen
Event Director

Event Coordination, Production, Publicity & Outreach, Scheduling & Rentals, Programming, Volunteer Coordination

Candi Martinez is a native Californian with over twenty years of experience in professional Event Production, Artistic Curation and Publicity. Her passion is curating events that serve as platforms to celebrate cultural heritage, promote social justice and foster community. In 2012, she was introduced to East Bay Meditation Center's POC meditation group and decided to become part of EBMC's beloved sangha. Her hobbies include volunteering, surfing, yoga and cooking.

email: Candi at eastbaymeditation dot org

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Cassandra Shaylor
Development Director

Fundraising and Development

Cassandra Shaylor is an activist, attorney, and artist based in Oakland. She is the co-founder and former co-director of Justice Now and a co-founder of Critical Resistance, both abolitionist organizations focused on dismantling the prison industrial complex and building a world without prisons. Her academic and written work has focused on issues of women in prison, abolition, and the intersections of race, sexuality, gender, and punishment. Over the past few years she has been a fundraising and communications consultant for a range of social justice and environmental justice groups, and she is currently developing her skills as a metal smith.

email: Cassandra at eastbaymeditation dot org

Darren Lee Brown
Event Coordinator

Event Management

Darren Lee Brown has been attending and volunteering at EBMC since 2015.  An organizer, syncretist, former academic, artist, DJ, go-go dancer, avid cyclist and mechanic, Darren identifies as a (dis)abled, multiracial, working-class queer.  He participated in the third cohort of Practice in Transformative Action (2015-16),  earned a doctorate in American Studies at Michigan State University (2012), and helped establish the baccalaureate in Asian American Studies at San Francisco State (1998). An empath, Darren aims to heal through the wisdom of the dharma in combination with various modalities ranging from somatic exercises to the spiritual. 

email: Darren at eastbaymeditation dot org

Irene Ross
Administration & Facilities Director

Administrative and Data Management, Fundraising and Facilities

Irene was born and raised in the Bay Area and has a professional background in tenant advocacy and public interest law. Irene is deeply committed to advancing social justice and cultivating inclusive communities through personal reflection and direct advocacy.  She has been practicing meditation for over fifteen years and joined the EBMC Sangha in 2017, where she found a spiritual refuge in the Alphabet Sangha. Irene is currently participating in EBMC’s White & Awakening in Sangha program and is profoundly grateful to be a part of the EBMC community.

email: Irene at eastbaymeditation dot org

Monica Cadena
Campaign and Event Coordinator

Development Support, Fundraising, Gift Economics, Event Management

Monica Cadena is an Afro-Latinx California based artist, writer, yogi, movement worker and digital alchemist. The former co-founder of Wear Your Voice Magazine, an intersectional feminist magazine centering the voices of Black and Brown queer women, femmes, trans and non-binary people, Monica’s work is heavily influenced by the the resilience of the diasporic community.

email: Monica at eastbaymeditation dot org

Mushim (Patricia) Ikeda
COMMUNITY DIRECTOR

Communications & outreach, Volunteer coordination, Human resources, Radical inclusivity, Shared leadership

Mushim has a background in both monastic and lay Buddhist practice and is also one of EBMC's core teachers. A well-known socially-engaged Buddhist writer and racial justice activist, Mushim also works as an independent Diversity, Equity & Inclusion consultant. At EBMC, she loves to encourage leadership development and spiritual friendship among our many volunteers, and she plays an active role in EBMC's Communications and outreach and on the HR team. She’s also a member of the Radical Inclusivity Committee and the Shared Leadership Committee. www.mushimikeda.com

email: Mushim at eastbaymeditation dot org

Shah Noor
Event Manager

Event Management, Dharma Talk Editor

Shah Noor Hussein (they/them/theirs) is a writer, educator, and unapologetic queer black feminist with an M.A. in Anthropology and previous work in gender studies, urban environments, and teaching pedagogies. They have been practicing and instructing yoga and meditation in the community for over 12 years and joined the EBMC sangha in 2014. Shah currently works as a guest lecturer and freelance writer as well as EBMC's new Event Associate! Their future work aims to (re)center marginalized voices in dialogues on alternative epistemologies and cultural reproduction through education, art, and activism.

Xiaojing Wang
Programs & Finance Director

Programs, Finance; HR; Technology, Admin for Ethics, Reconciliation and Resolution Council

Xiaojing discovered a spiritual home at EBMC after attending the first Introduction to Meditation class for People of Color in 2006. She was also a member of EBMC’s first Commit to Dharma program in 2009. Prior to joining EBMC's staff, Xiaojing organized in D.C. Chinatown for immigrant healthcare access, and worked as a policy advocate for the Health Initiative of the Americas and the City of Oakland. As a licensed acupuncturist, Xiaojing also practices Chinese medicine.

email: Xiaojing at eastbaymeditation dot org