Lama Yeshe Jinpa is the Spiritual Director and resident teacher of Lion’s Roar Dharma Center which he co-founded with Geshe Losang Gyatso in 1992. He is also the founder of Middleway Health – a center for healing, creativity and growth, and Middle Way Health Foundation – a nonprofit center providing free services to the community. He has co-authored two books and offers workshops that blend his Buddhist teachings with real-world career and life experiences. For more information on Lama Jinpa.
Geshe Damchaabazar Gerjav – Board Member
Geshe Damchoe was born in 1968 in Mongolia and has been a Buddhist monk since 1991 when he was ordained by Bakula Rinpoche. He received his Gelong ordination in 1995 by His Holiness, the XIV Dalai Lama and studied at Sera Jey Monastery in Southern India for 19 years. Venerable Damchoe completed his Geshe Degree in 2012, the first Mongolian to receive a Geshe Degree from Sera Jey Monastery in Southern India. During his time in India he also attended many of the public teachings given by the Dalai Lama on a variety of subjects in both Dharamsala and India. He has been a full-time resident teacher at Lion’s Roar Dharma Center in Sacramento, California since 2008.
Debbie joined Lion’s Roar in 2009. She handles the board meetings and provides day-to-day support to Lion’s Roar Associate Teacher, Geshe Damchoe. Debbie retired from the workforce in 2011. Prior to her retirement, she worked over 30 years in the federal government in a variety of areas including budgeting, accounting, setting electric power rates, and analyzing regulations. Debbie is part of a group in her local community that is working to preserve riparian forest land in the neighborhood as a natural habitat for plants and animals, and a contemplative space for local residents. Debbie has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from California State University, Sacramento.
Susan Farrar – Board Member, Program Manager
Susan joined Lion’s Roar and started studying with Lama Jinpa in 2008. She took Refuge vows in 2009. She has facilitated classes for beginning students since 2014 and leads practice and meditation sessions. She completed the 2-year Foundation of Buddhist Thought training in 2014 and completed the Chaplaincy Program from the Sati Center for Buddhist Studies in 2019. She volunteers as a chaplain at U.C. Davis Medical Center and has volunteered as a hospice worker also through U.C Davis. She is also active in various activities surrounding food insecurity in the Sacramento community.
Prior to her retirement in 2004, Susan worked as a law office manager and as a research manager specializing in data and demographic research. She has a BA from the University of Colorado and post-graduate work at UCLA.
Ellen Wolfe – Board Member
Ellen joined Lion’s Roar in 2007. She is a board member and a student-instructor. Ellen continues to run an energy policy consulting company while increasingly providing support in the area of mindful leadership. She is a certified Search Inside Yourself instructor and leads programs for corporate and other organizations. Ellen also works with individuals wanting to development mindfulness and emotional intelligence and apply it in their work and life. Ellen has a Bachelor of Science Electrical Engineering from the University of California, Davis and Masters’ degrees in Management and Technology and Policy from MIT.
Elizabeth Wadsworth – Board Member, Secretary
Elizabeth joined Lion’s Roar in 2013. Elizabeth is a board member and student speaker, and also assists with various events. She has over fifteen years of non-profit management experience, and currently manages IT projects for a Joint Powers Authority in California. Elizabeth holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Strategic Management from California State University, Sacramento.
Greg Vigil – Board Member
Greg Vigil is a Bay Area native, born and raised in San Jose, CA. He relocated to the Sacramento region in 2005. Greg attended Lincoln Law School in San Jose and has studied Aviation, Sociology, and Dharma for over 15 years. Greg became a dedicated student of Lama Yeshe Jinpa’s in late 2016. It is with great dedication and honor that Greg is willing to serve the Sangha Community through Lion’s Roar Board of Directors. Greg is continuing his study efforts with aspirations of serving as a liaison and chaplain for our community. Greg also has a strong passion and love for Great Danes.
Baasan Lam Altangerel – Operations Manager
As the Operations Manager, Baasandorj serves as the liaison to several highly regarded Buddhist teachers who visit Lion’s Roar Dharma Center on a regular basis. Baasandorj translates teachings from Lion’s Roar Resident Teacher, Geshe Damchoe, acts as umzi for visiting teachers, and assists Geshe Damchoe with preparation for special events at Lion’s Roar and preforms Buddhist ceremonies and blessings for the community. Baasan has a Bachelor’s degree in Buddhist Studies from Sera Jey Monastery, in Southern India.
Patty Marcotte – Board Member
As Dharma Secretary to Lama Yeshe Jinpa, Patty Marcotte is responsible for correspondence with both local and international Buddhist teachers. She also sometimes writes short articles for our weekly newsletter The Roar. She is a wife and mother of five adult children, one with special needs. She works as a Speech Language Pathology Assistant helping children who have language delays. Her days are full, as she was also recently invited to serve on the Board of the Interfaith Council of Sacramento.
James Meyer – Board Member
James joined Lions Roar in 2019. He joined the Board in 2020 and also co-facilitates groups at LRDC. He has over 18 years of daily meditation experience, and has attended numerous retreats and trainings thru a variety of teachers in Christianity, Shamanism, American Zen, Angelic Reiki, and Tibetan Buddhism. He has a passion for spirituality, psychology, wellbeing, and nature.
James has worked in information systems in profitability analysis, Human Resource software and training, Call Telephony Systems, data centers, and banking. James owns a local For Profit Mental Health Counseling Center called Lions Heart Counseling that was formed in 2014 and serves clients in Folsom and Sacramento. James has a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics and Finance from Sonoma State University, a Master’s degree in Social Work from Sacramento State University and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.
Autumn Payne – Board Member
Autumn Payne joined Lion’s Roar in 2019. She is a wife and has two little buddhas at home. She is an experienced photojournalist, most recently with The Sacramento Bee. Currently she is an independent visual journalist, filmmaker and educator at Sacramento City College. Autumn uses her video skills to help tell the story of Lion’s Roar Dharma Center and Middleway Health and looks forward to doing more for Lion’s Roar as a board member. She has a B.S. degree in Journalism from San Jose State University.