President, Director of the Dogen Institute
David joined the board of Sanshin in February 2012. He has been practicing with Hojo-san since 2004 – in Pittsburgh, North Carolina, and Bloomington. David has also practiced at other Zen Centers on the East Coast. He began sitting in 2001 with a student of Tenshin Reb Anderson Roshi and received the precepts from Reb in 2009. He is currently editing one of Hojo-san's books-in-progress. David is employed as an IT strategy consultant, and has Master’s degrees in American Civilization and in Organization Development, with particular interests in journaling, action research, creativity, and working with groups. He is thrilled to have been leading the Dogen Institute since 2012 and enjoys working and corresponding with its many volunteers across the world. David is a native of Philadelphia, PA, enjoys hiking, and is a student of Japanese. He is honored to serve as President of Sanshin Zen Community.
Committees: Facilities (chair), Finance
Gene became a member of the board of directors in June of 2018. He holds a Masters
degree in Finance and Quantitative Analysis, and is a retired chief information officer,
having worked in the technology and apparel industries. He was also a senior executive at major firms in the consulting sector. Just prior to his retirement, Gene was the chief executive officer at a non-profit firm in southern California, where he helped several dozen other non-profits understand the complexities of technology and how best to utilize technology to expand their capacity and support their missions.
Gene currently resides in southern Indiana, where he studies Soto Zen and practices
zazen both at his home in the Yellow Wood State Forest and Sanshin.
Visit his website here.
A great part of Rev. Dennis McCarty’s life has been dedicated to the beauty and subtlety of the English language. He has written well-reviewed novels and nonfiction books; plays; essays; magazine articles–and is a dedicated lyricist and songwriter. Over the years he has been a sailor, an electrician doing heavy construction, a teacher, a nationally published novelist—and of course, a minister.
He served the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Columbus, Indiana, for 12 years. In June, 2015, he retired to become Minister Emeritus. But retiring from active parish ministry is just one more career change. He is still an active pulpit supply preacher, writer, songwriter, and newspaper columnist. He also remains active in the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association. He participates in Sanshin's Thursday evening zazen and discussion group.
Outside lineage director
Rev. Zuiko Redding is the resident teacher at Cedar Rapids Zen Center - Jikyouji. She began practicing Zen Buddhism as a university student in Houston in the early 1960s. She completed a Ph.D. in sociology/demography at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the early seventies and taught at the university level for a number of years.
In 1992, after some years of discernment, she received novice ordination from Rev. Tsugen Narasaki at Zuioji monastery in Japan. She trained under his direction at Zuioji and its sub-temple Shogoji, receiving final ordination in 1996. She returned to the United States in 1997.
In the 1980s and 90s, Zuiko practiced with Rev. Tozen Akiyama in Milwaukee and with Rev. Dainin Katagiri in Milwaukee and Minneapolis.
In addition to being teacher at Cedar Rapids Zen Center, Zuiko is active in the building of a national training monastery for clergy and she writes for a small online magazine, Ancient Way. In her spare time she hikes, reads and hangs out with her cat.
Cedar Rapids Zen Center was founded in April, 2000, and has about fifty members from around the area. It offers a regular schedule of zazen (meditation), dharma teaching and retreats.
Committees: Sangha Relations, Facilities
Gayle received the precepts at Sanshin in 2017. Over the past five years she has practiced with several sanghas in addition to Sanshin, and has served as fukuten at both Tassajara and Brooklyn Zen Center. Gayle is an associate professor of English and of Gender and Sexuality Studies at Princeton University where she works in phenomenology, queer and trans theory, feminist philosophy, 20th Century Continental philosophy, psychoanalysis, and disability studies. She has extensive experience with formal board service and steering committees in the academic and publishing realms.
Inside lineage director
Shodo Spring is a Soto Zen priest and dharma heir of Shohaku Okumura. Before encountering Zen in 1983 she had studied physics and social work, and practiced as a psychotherapist. She met the Dharma through Dainin Katagiri in Minnesota, studied at San Francisco Zen Center, and finally trained with Okumura Roshi. She was interim priest at Anchorage Zen Communityin 2010-11 and volunteered with Brahmavihara Cambodia in 2014.
In 2004 Shodo organized public sitting outside the political conventions and joined a group walking between them, from Boston to New York. In 2006 she walked the Texas-Mexico border with Claude Anshin Thomas in the American Zen Pilgrimage. After receiving Dharma Transmission, she organized and led the 2013 Compassionate Earth Walk, a 3-month spiritual walk along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route in the Great Plains. That walk began with a vision and has shaped her whole life since.
Currently Shodo sits monthly Antaiji-style sesshins in the tradition of her lineage, and has founded Mountains and Waters Alliance to work together with all beings for the welfare of the whole earth. She lives on a farm, apprenticing herself to the plants, waters, animals and earth, learning to be human. She spends time with her children and grandchildren.
Ying Joshin Studebaker
Committees: Development, Facilities
Ying received the precepts in 2017 at Sanshin after practicing zazen for 20 years. Her interest has been teaching and supporting others to do zazen in her work place as well as in the local communities in which she has lived.
She sat weekly with the Columbus (OH) Zen Sangha, where she led meditation sessions, trained people to lead meditation, provided orientation to newcomers, and created and maintained a sangha listserv which started with twenty-some members and now has 290 members.
Ying moved to the Philadelphia area about three years ago and started a new meditation group at a local library. She recently started a personal wellness practice group based on the same principle of zazen training that focus on daily activities.
Prior to her retirement she was the director of employee wellness for Ohio State University. She holds a B.A. in Business Administration, a B.S. in Nursing, and a M.S. in Community Health Nursing and is an Advanced Practice Nurse in Community Health. Her professional experiences were mainly in developing new programs and designing operation protocols to delivery primary care for indigent populations and wellness services to the communities she served. She also wrote grants and raised money for indigent patient care, forming networks and collaborating with community partners to deliver more efficient medical care.
Immediate Past President
Mark was a voting member of the board from 2009 to 2019 and now serves in an advisory capacity for development. He received the precepts from Okumura Roshi in 2001. From 2001 to 2004, he served on the board of Stillpoint, a Soto Zen practice community in Pittsburgh, PA, where he was the leader of the gardening crew, a member of the outreach community, and webmaster. When he first joined Sanshin's board of directors, Mark focused on our communication and technology resources supporting the local and global Sanshin community. He served as board secretary from 2010 until serving as president from 2017 to 2019. Over his career, Mark has worked in many different fields, including photography, music, and media production. Since 2008, he has worked as a researcher of the human experience of using complex technology.
Founder and Abbot
Okumura Roshi was born in Osaka, Japan, in 1948. In 1970, he was ordained by the late Kosho Uchiyama Roshi, one of the foremost Zen masters of the twentieth-century. He received Dharma transmission from his teacher in 1975 and, shortly after, became one of the founding members of Pioneer Valley Zendo in Massachusetts. He returned to Japan in 1981 and began translating the works of Dogen Zenji, Uchiyama Roshi and other Soto masters from Japanese into English. In 1993, he moved back to the United States with his wife, Yuko, and their two children. He has previously served as teacher at the Kyoto Soto Zen Center in Japan and at the Minnesota Zen Meditation Center in Minneapolis, and was Director of the Soto Zen International Center in San Francisco for thirteen years.
Hōkō was ordained as a novice by Shohaku Okumura in 2005, and she completed her shuso hossen that same year at Kogetsu-an in Shiga, Japan. She received dharma transmission in September, 2012 and completed zuise at Eiheiji and Sojiji in November of that year. In January, 2016 Hōkō was named vice-abbot and successor at Sanshin. She previously served as communications director at Hokyoji Zen Practice Community in southern Minnesota from 2013 to 2016 and as interim practice director at Milwaukee Zen Center from 2011 to 2013. She has served as an adjunct instructor at Lakeland College in Sheboygan, WI, where she taught Eastern Religious Traditions in the classroom and online, and now teaches Zen through Ivy Tech Community College's lifelong learning program. She is recognized by Sotoshu as nito kyoushi (second-rank teacher) and as a practitioner of baika, a type of Japanese Buddhist hymn created by Sotoshu in 1952. She is serving her second four-year appointment from Sotoshu as kokusai fukyoushi, or international teacher.