Bridget is the founder of Management Intelligence and Life Orientations UK and Middle East. She is an International Master Trainer for the Lifo® Method, a strengths based instrument used in coaching and performance improvement based on the work of Fromm, Rogers and Maslow. Bridget lectured at Warwick University Manufacturing Group on Improving Personal Performance and continues to lecture on performance management in the USA, Japan, the Middle East, and Australia, throughout Europe and in the UK. Her work now focuses on engagement and productivity at an organizational level and maximizing individual and team potential. In September 2010, Bridget was appointed Director of Talent at All About Brands plc, joining the Board as an Executive Director where she pioneered an appreciative networking process to integrate 12 offices across 4 continents. In August 2011 she was seconded to the role of Global Director – Organizational Development and People Transfomation at the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, one of the world’s largest professional bodies.
Lauren joined the Foundation team following two years' service in the Peace Corps in Guatemala where she worked primarily with women and girls on self-development and health and wellness initiatives. Prior to that, she worked in international development and foreign aid at the Millennium Challenge Corporation in Washington D.C. Her initial role with the Foundation as Youth Wellness Director reflects her personal commitment to support young people with weight issues, a struggle she experienced firsthand. Lauren became Executive Director of the Foundation in November 2009, with an eagerness to continue the Foundation's focus on health and fitness while expanding its interests in holistic wellness. In addition to her Foundation responsibilities she completed a master’s degree in Applied Positive Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, knowledge she incorporates into the Foundation's culture and programs. Lauren is a certified personal trainer through the National Academy of Sports Medicine and a graduate of Hamilton College.
Jessica Colman graduated in the MAPP class of 2010. She currently works as a Human Capital Analyst at Mercer Consulting, helping organizations manage their people most effectively. In addition to her work in consulting, Jessica gives positive psychology based lectures and facilitates personal development workshops. She is currently working towards a coaching certification, and in January of 2011 she published a short handbook of positive psychology on the Amazon Kindle platform.
Paula Davis-Laack, JD, MAPP, is an internationally published writer and stress and resilience expert. Paula has trained resilience skills to thousands of professionals, including educators, lawyers, and military personal, in the Middle East, South Korea, Australia, and throughout the United States. Her online magazine, Build Your Strong, (www.pauladavislaack.com) helps busy professionals manage stress and build strong, happy, and healthy lives. Paula’s article, “10 Things Happy People Do Differently,” recently appeared on the front page of the Huffington Post and was named a Top 25 blog post for 2012 by Psychology Today. It has been translated in French, Norwegian, and Italian. Most recently, Paula was named a Top 10 Online Influencer in the category of “Stress” by Sharecare, a website co-founded by Dr. Oz. Paula makes regular media appearances (both live and in print) as a guest expert on the topics of stress, resilience, happiness, and positive psychology. Contact Paula at email@example.com.
Elizabeth is an educator with over eleven years of experience in teaching and school administration. She is most passionate about early childhood development and the implications of positive psychology for parents and teachers in years zero to five. Elizabeth is currently the Education Director of the Louisiana Children’s Museum, where she enthusiastically creates and implements programs for children, families and educators around the themes of positive relationships, nurturing environments and a positive image of the child (strengths and potential).
Carl J. Fleming is the co-founder of the Global Well-Being Initiative (GWBI) and the developer of “Well-Being Social Capital." The goal of GWBI and Well-Being Social Capital is to bring the science of positive psychology to emerging economies and augment the existing efforts of international development agencies, regional development banks, and nongovernmental organizations. His work enhances synergies among the academic, government and development communities to increase psychological flourishing (high psychological well-being) and social capital (the norms and networks that enable collective action).
Fleming is currently a Senior International Attorney with the U.S. State Department’s Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC). There he advises on program development and implementation to promote growth opportunities, open markets and raise the standard of living for some of the world's poorest individuals.
Max Glass (MAPP '10) has a B.A. from Penn in BIBB (the biological basis of behavior). As of October, 2010, Max is working as an executive recruiter at JM & Company, a retained search firm in Philadelphia that performs C-level search work for businesses owned by many of the nations top venture capital and private equity funds. He uses his MAPP degree to find candidates who will flourish in a given position. Max is also an active alumnus of his undergraduate acapella group, Off the Beat. Though he knows that acapella is stupid and/or dumb, he founded the group's alumni association and endowment with Penn. He is actively fundraising. Max also invests in real estate and is passionate about entrepreneurship.
Lucy is currently a doctoral candidate at Auckland University of Technology. Her proposed thesis topic is: "Does participation in THRIVE™, a workplace structured group outdoor exercise programme incorporating positive psychology, boost physiological and psychological health?" Since her home town of Christchurch (NZ) was struck by four large earthquakes during the last year, Lucy continues to work with government departments, corporate clients and community groups to bolster resilience in the face of continuing aftershocks and uncertainty.
Naama’s pursuit in positive psychology started with her acting career and strongly developed when she became a mom. As an Israeli radio personality she was always interested in finding ways in which to achieve personal happiness and convey it through media. Naama is constantly working on advancing her education in positive psychology. She is looking to apply what she has learned to the family or individual environment, specifically working with couples. Naama is passionate about educating individuals in the basic elements of positive psychology and employing various techniques to improve individuals and families lives. Naama regularly conducts private workshops geared to enhance the lives of our communities.
Vanessa King is an experienced leadership and organization development consultant based in London and working in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and the US, often in times of uncertainty. Her work focuses on helping organizations thrive through change, develop talent, and helping people to use their strengths and passions. In short, helping organizations get the most from their people and people to enjoy work and life more. Vanessa is known for creative thinking combined with practical implementation. She has an interest in creativity and her capstone project looked at ‘Creative thinking for non-creatives’. Vanessa also leads on Positive Psychology and its applications for the charity, Action for Happiness, founded by Professor Lord Richard Layard. She has contributed to features on several BBC radio and TV shows and in the UK press. Vanessa continues to work with the University of Pennsylvania as part of its resilience training team. In addition to MAPP, Vanessa has a BSc(Joint Hons) in Psychology and Zoology and is a qualified Chartered Accountant. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Niki Mathias works in corporate education, integrating positive psychology principles into talent development practices. This includes technical training and leadership development for diverse employees. She holds an M.A. in organizational management, a B.A. in English, and a certificate in Secondary Education. She is a also a certified leadership coach through Georgetown University and previously served as a United States Peace Corps volunteer. She is an educator, a coach, an author, and a leader.
Lorrie Peniston is a leader in the integration of positive psychology with traditional psychotherapy for clients and couples creating a hybrid approach to therapy. Based in Bermuda in private practice for the last 17 years, she has twenty five years of experience working in various helping professional roles with adolescents, adults, couples and families in various educational and treatment settings. She holds a Masters in Positive Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania and a B.S. with Honors in Individual and Family Studies from the Pennsylvania State University. Lorrie serves as a coach to divorcing families in the Collaborative Law process. She is the author of The Flourishing Couple: Finding and Fostering the Best in Your Relationship, a program designed to cultivate relationship well-being in couples.
Gretchen Pisano Grunwell
Gretchen Pisano is the owner of Sounding Board Ink, a global coaching and consulting practice founded on using the best verbal and visual techniques available to drive clarity, creativity and courage in the individuals and organizations that she coaches. Gretchen is a Master Coach, personally trained and certified by Martha Beck, Ph.D., and a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s innovative Master in Applied Positive Psychology program (2010). Gretchen has most recently partnered with IKEA and O Magazine to launch the Life Improvement Project, a national campaign centered on individual and community improvement. Although recently graduated from UPenn, Gretchen has been able to immediately apply the evidence-based approaches of positive psychology into her work with individuals as well as organizations to great success.
Robert “Reb” Rebele
Reb writes something every day, and he is slowly but surely becoming convinced that this one simple task is the most versatile path to well-being. As a Philadelphia-based educator, Reb is devoting increasing amounts of his free time to projects that get people writing. In 2011, he taught his first positive-psychology inspired writing workshop called Future Best Self. Offered to ten adult learners through the non-profit First Person Arts, the workshop gave students an opportunity not only to refine their writing craft, but also to explore the science of hope. Currently Reb is organizing a month-long intensive writing project for the MAPP alumni community, during which he plans to write 30,000 more words of his own. He also has worked with the MAPP program as an assistant instructor for several classes and in a range of technology and support roles. Reb continues to work in online education, where he is attempting to integrate positive psychology research into instructional design in an effort to improve both educational experience and outcomes.
Lesley Russo is a practicing attorney and a partner in the Charleston office of Bowles Rice McDavid Graff & Love LLP, a 120 lawyer law firm headquartered in Charleston, West Virginia. Lesley is a 1986 cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School and a 2010 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania MAPP program. Lesley's goal is to bring the benefits of positive psychology to business professionals, particularly the legal profession and law schools. She has a special interest in mindfulness and other contemplative practices. She is working on bringing scientifically validated mindfulness techniques to busy professionals and students as a way to connect to life meaning and purpose and otherwise combat the negative effects of stress. Most recently, she lectured on this topic at Duke Law School's "Wellness and the Law" class being taught by another MAPP alumnus, Dan Bowling. In her personal life, Lesley is the mom to twelve-year old Nicholas and spends lots of evening hours watching him play in America's favorite past-time---baseball!
Lisa is a certified leadership coach who is also a skilled trainer, speaker and consultant. Her first career was as a high school French teacher. This means that Lisa still has a great passion for education, and that she is afraid of nothing. Lisa's second career, after completing her MBA, was in Organizational Development. Lisa worked on projects such as employee engagement, leadership competencies, 360 leadership assessments, leadership development, change management for different programs, and other topics that she found to be quite interesting. As a trainer, Lisa has presented to diverse corporate audiences on effective interpersonal communication, how to lead change, introduction to coaching skills, leading high performance teams and many other different leadership skills and traits. Lisa's third career, which is a very apt confluence of all that has come before, is as the owner of LVS Consulting. Lisa specializes in creating positive organizations through her speaking, training, coaching and consulting, working with individuals, teams, managers and leaders. Lisa incorporates positive psychology into all aspects of her work. Lisa is on the founding board of the Canadian Positive Psychology Association.
Kathy Snyder is a teacher at Dow High School in Midland, Michigan. She teaches IB/AP psychology, advanced psychology, and student leadership. She also advises the student government and is the cheerleading coach. She holds a B.A. in psychology from the University of Michigan, an M.A. in counseling from Central Michigan University, and a MAPP degree from the University of Pennsylvania. While her capstone focus was on elementary staff morale, she continually works to integrate positive psychology into her daily world: classroom, athletic arena, and staff professional development.
Matt is currently enrolled in the first year of Penn’s Masters of Social Work program en route to a career in individual therapy as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. Before re-entering school full-time this Fall, Matt spent 15 months working as a Case Worker with the behavioral outpatient unit of Washington Hospital Center. During this period he also completed Penn’s Masters of Applied Positive Psychology program. Prior to his transition into human services in 2008, Matt spent roughly six years in the financial sector. At Gannett Co. Inc., he spent three years as a Senior Internal Auditor before joining MCG Capital Corp, a business development financier. There, he served as a Senior Associate. Matt graduated from the Penn State University with a B.S. in Finance.
Prakriti (“Paki”) Tandon, MAPP ’10, came back to her Alma Mater, the University of Pennsylvania, for her Masters in Applied Positive Psychology after several years in the Media/Television space. Most recently, she was an anchor and producer at CNBC-TV18 in New Delhi, India. Paki’s Capstone research paper involved an exploration of the current state of the Media through a positive psychology lens, and was a call for a higher ratio of healthy forms of television media. Paki is now helping manage her family’s real estate business while also working on several projects for the media space, and hopes to fuse her passion for positive psychology with her talents and skills on camera. She contributes regularly to Positive Psychology News Daily.
Mark is an assistant professor at the U.S. Army Command & General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. As a member of the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness team, he incorporates positive psychology concepts and resilience skills training into military education curriculum throughout the Army. He also teaches a course entitled Total Fitness, which provides students with practical skills to improve well-being in five domains: emotional, social, family, physical, and spiritual. Mark earned a B.S. at the United States Military Academy and a Master of Military Art and Science degree at the Command & General Staff College.
Emily Van Sonnenberg
Elena Volnova was born in Moscow and moved to New York City in 2000. She is practicing positive psychology in a corporate world and is working on organizing a study that will examine the effects of owning a dog on human happiness. She is a Senior Manager of Ecommerce Operations at Lord & Taylor and is a founder of a startup Dog Fashion that is launching a line of dog spa products (www.dogfashiononline.com).
Amy is very much interested in whole community change, place-making and the central role that positive education (in its many different guises) can play in such change. Her capstone centered on these themes, advocating for an expansion of positive education’s definition through an ecological (systems based) approach. For 10+ years prior to the MAPP program, Amy taught and held a number of leadership/coordination positions in schools, including Geelong Grammar School (Australia) and Markham College (Peru). Since graduation, Amy has been consulting on positive education initiatives, and working at the Positive Psychology Center at the University of Pennsylvania. She is Program Manager for the Positive Neuroscience Project. Amy is also part of a training team that provides resilience training to military personnel in the U.S. Army, and is an assistant instructor in the MAPP program. One of the things Amy most appreciated about MAPP was the opportunity to connect with ideas and people across disciplines. She believes this to be vital for embedding and sustaining positive change.
Yukun Zhao was born and raised in China, until he came to the United States at the age of 22. He is the Founder and President of Huaren Applied Positive Psychology Institute (HAPPI), which is dedicated to promote positive psychology and its applications in Chinese communities all over the world. He co-founded the Global Chinese Positie Psychology Association and serves as its Vice President and Chief Event Officer. He co-organized the International Positive Psychology and Education Conference of China in 2010, sponsored by the Department of Education of China and hosted by Beijing Normal University. He is also an acclaimed author, with two books published in China. He graduated from the University of Science and Technology of China, and also received Master degrees in Chemistry and Computer Science in the United States.
Lisa Zigarmi is a leadership consultant for The Ken Blanchard Companies®, located in New York City. She works with Fortune 500 companies, to build leadership capacity within their ranks and is passionate about creating saner, more effective, more meaning-driven organizations. She is currently researching employee work passion/engagement and spends her time helping leaders and organizations to create the conditions (organizational, relational and role) for their employees to flourish. Lisa received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from The University of Pennsylvania, in 2002. She is a certified coach and completed coach training through The Coaches Training Institute, in 2008.
Zuzka is an international project manager for Microsoft Windows International. Her interests in positive psychology include large-scale behavior change, positive deviance, and applied research (particularly action research and program evaluation). Her MAPP capstone project was the design and implementation of the Hero Pledge and Hero Challenge social change initiatives for Philip Zimbardo's Heroic Imagination Project. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and a Bachelor of Science in Cognitive Science & Applied Social Research (BDIC) from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.