Board of Directors – Members

John Jennings, Co-President

John first encountered Buddhism in middle school when he randomly picked a book on Buddhism off the school library shelf. This was followed by reading Hesse’s Siddhartha. Years later while finishing his Master’s Degree in Architecture at the University of Oregon, he encountered Kalu Rinpoche and took refuge with him in 1983.  John first came to KCC in 1986 but left for a long stretch to live in Chile and grow a family. He returned to KCC in 2007 and has served on the Board since 2014.

Linda Besant, Secretary

Linda has always had a hard time sitting still, so she shied away from pursuing a meditation practice until she visited several monasteries while traveling in Nepal in 2011, and saw the compassionate nurturing of young monks who also had a hard time sitting still during practice. She began attending KCC after returning to Portland and immediately felt at home. Linda worked as a non-profit executive director in disability services, and as a staff member in the arts arena; and has served on boards ranging from the local chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association to the Lesbian Community Project. She is grateful that the skills she developed can now be of service to KCC. She’s been on the board since 2013, first as Assistant President and now as Secretary. She still has a hard time sitting still.

Doug Dunlap, Newsletter and Media

Now retired, Doug worked as a psychologist for over 30 years, mostly at various branches of Oregon State Hospital. In addition to working as a psychotherapist and treatment team member, he coordinated and edited a patient newspaper there for about 15 years. In 2010 he stumbled into the Portland Shambhala Center where his skepticism about a spiritual path was slowly transformed into positive engagement and gratitude for teachings received. Seeking more traditional and accessible Buddhist teachers, he began attending KCC in 2017 and is currently a student of Mindrolling Jetsün Khandro Rinpoche as well. He became a Board member in 2020.

Sandy Pollock, Treasurer

Sandy has been associated with KCC since the 90s, on and off and usually from a distance (San Francisco, LA) before moving to Portland for a few years (2012-19), and now away again although not too far Olympia, WA). He has served as KCC treasurer for the 8 years he’s been on the board.

Phil Wallin, Development

Phil started practice at the San Francisco Zen Center in the 1970s, connected with the Kagyu practice of Shambhala in Santa Fe in the 1980s, and took refuge with Lama Michael at KCC in 2015. After retiring from a career of land and river preservation he turned his energies to helping KCC thrive as an organization.