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Meet Our Community Members

ram Meet 36-year-member Ram Smith, shown with his wife, Dikshini. A former pro-football SF 49er, Ram is one of the founders of our community in Assisi, Italy and has taken Ananda’s message – especially through Swami Kriyananda’s Music of Divine Joy – to dozens of countries.

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shantiteri Meet Shanti, born in our Ananda Portland community, and now a sophomore at our Living Wisdom Boarding High School. An extremely talented young lady, her performances in dance (including choreography), theater, and the violin enrich Ananda’s Joyful Arts performances. Shanti has also been honing her equestrian skills since she was tiny.

Meet Teri, who’s the only one of our models who has actually worked as a model! Now she oversees our annual Tulip Festival which drew 6,000 visitors in 2014. The directorial team for Finding Happiness drafted Teri early on as Key Production Assistant, and quickly dubbed her “a natural.”

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koral Meet Koral, who was born in Turkey, but who received his university degree in Communications Engineering in the U.S. Thanks in great part to Koral’s expertise in fiber-optics, Ananda has had a vibrant, on-line presence for many years. He’s a founding member of Ananda Velo, our cycling club, and a First Response Team member with the county’s fire department.

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threegirls Meet Gitabai, a clinical psychologist, who traveled extensively as she authored two books on pilgrimage: The Pilgrim’s Italy and The Pilgrim’s France. Now Gitabai serves as a lifestyle and nutritional coach, online through her website, My Bountiful Health.

Meet Surana, a newer member, whose background includes liaison work with a world advocacy group, placing agricultural experts in emerging nations. Now she assists with long-term legal projects, such as helping young people of many nations come to Ananda to study cooperative living.

Meet Denise, a consultant in the ancient science of Vaastu, who with her husband Peter, raised a son, Benjamin, at Ananda. She has shared her wonderful talents in the visual arts with many aspects of Ananda, including serving as an assistant art consultant for Finding Happiness.

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premi Meet Premi, who, when an elementary school teacher in Atlanta, learned about Ananda and started an Ananda Meditation Group. Now she lives at Ananda Village with daughters, Saia (10 yrs old) and Noorum (9), and teaches 3rdst and 4th grades at our Living Wisdom School.

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christian Meet Christian, who’s been part of Ananda since he was five years old and who is now one of our dedicated, full-time organic, biodynamic farmers. He’s also the founder of Christian Allen Luthiery, specializing in hand-built electric and acoustic guitars.

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IMG_4898 Meet Marjorie (Virya) McDougal LMP, a founding member of Ananda’s Center for Radiant Health. Through her second office in Grass Valley, she shares her healing touch, including Therapeutic Massage, CranioSacral and Reflexology, with the greater Nevada County as well.

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badricliff Meet Cliff Kushler, who attended prestigious Todai University (Tokyo). Fluent in Japanese, he went on to create two groundbreaking software technologies, including Swipe. He’s also a gifted thespian and musician – AND can make the perfect omelette.

Meet Badri, who came to Ananda five years ago, and is now a key staff member for our intensive Yoga Teacher Training Program. He’s also been asked to develop the Ananda Institute of Cooperative Communities, to be launched summer 2014. Badri and wife Gita (born at Ananda) just welcomed their first child, daughter Tulsi.

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gaurja Meet Gaurja who, with her family, were founding members of Ananda India. Gaurja spent her senior year at our Living Wisdom School, and is now finishing her Education for Life Teaching Credential at Ananda College near Portland. Gaurja’s mom, Sangeeta, directs our publishing in India, where Gaurja will return to begin an Education for Life School.

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vidura Meet Vidura, an Ananda member for 40 years, who’s provided leadership for many aspects of Ananda internationally. He and wife Durga have led 20 Ananda pilgrimages to India, and are now reshaping our Meditation Retreat to better serve guests who are seeking seclusion and longer meditations.

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kamalalisa Meet Jackee (Kamala) Chen See, born in Jamaica, and a skilled, all-round “handy person.” She’s part of our Property Services Team which keeps Ananda beautiful and in good repair. After several years at our Living Wisdom Schools, Jackee’s talented children, Jaslyn and Jahn, have found great success in the performing arts and athletics as well as academics.

Meet Lisa Powers, who, with husband Brian, worked for 20 years with art and antiques, specializing in Greek, Roman and Renaissance armor, weapons and scientific instruments. They’ve used those skills here in creating the beautiful displays in our Shrine of the Masters Museum. In addition, Lisa is our Member Services Director, overseeing membership programs and housing.

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neil Meet Neal Sullivan, who came to Ananda as a young person right after receiving his degree in Environmental Education from the Evergreen College in Olympia, WA. Nowadays he’s a builder, farmer and permaculture beekeeper – as well as having an active family who love getting out into the natural beauty surrounding this community.

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RachelCatherine Meet Rachel, whose parents emigrated from South Africa 20 year ago to be part of Ananda. Rachel, now 17, is a sports “natural,” excelling at soccer, riding, and Kuk Sool. For her Senior Project she’s learning antique car restoration from expert and long-time member, Brian Powers.

Meet Catherine, who came to Ananda 35 years ago from Japan where she was studying weaving. Author of Two Souls: Four Lives: The Lives and Former Lives of Paramhansa Yogananda and Swami Kriyananda, Catherine co-leads Ananda Pilgrimages to Normandy/England, and hosts guests at The Expanding Light.

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