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Our Trustees & Staff

The Fetzer Institute employs a "deep engagement" model to govern, organize, and nurture the Institute community. The name reflects the understanding of the relationship between the inner life with action and service, a commitment to nurturing loving relationships within various communities, and a responsibility for leading the process to define the Institute's program strategies. The deep engagement model guides our board in clarifying program priorities; determining how the Fetzer community can live its values; and developing and monitoring strategies to execute the mission.

Board of Trustees

Robert Boisture

Bob Boisture is president and CEO of the Fetzer Institute. Prior to founding Boisture Law in 2008, he practiced for many years at a prominent Washington, DC law firm, where he headed the Exempt Organizations Practice Group and served on two occasions as president of the firm. As a longtime advisor to Independent Sector and the Council on Foundations, he helped lead successful efforts to increase tax incentives for charitable giving; draft and enact the intermediate sanctions rules; and defeat the Istook challenge to the ability of charities to participate in the legislative process. Boisture’s expertise spans the full range of issues arising from a nonprofit’s federal tax-exempt status as well as the obligations of the organization and its directors under state nonprofit law. He has served as director of Public Policy for the YMCA of the United States, and, more recently, as director of YMCA Activate America, a major national public health initiative. He has served as co-editor-in-chief of the Journal of Taxation of Exempt Organizations, as a member of the Advisory Board of the NYU Program on Philanthropy and the Law, and as chair of the Human Services Forum. He currently serves as a director and member of the executive committee of Venture Philanthropy Partners. He received his JD from Yale Law School in 1979. He also attended Princeton University (AB, 1974, Woodrow Wilson Scholar), and Oxford University (BA, 1976, Marshall Scholar).

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Carolyn T. Brown

Carolyn Thompson Brown is a trustee of the Fetzer Institute and director of the Office of Scholarly Programs and the John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress. In that capacity she provides vision and direction to programs that fund the world’s most accomplished and most promising scholars for periods of residency to conduct research in the Library’s collections. She also organizes conferences, seminars, and other scholarly events. The Poetry and Literature Program, which hosts the Poet Laureate of the United States, is also under her direction. Prior to assuming this position, she led the Collections and Services Directorate, overseeing collections development, collections management, reference, and public outreach for the general, special, and Area Studies collections. This followed several years leading the Area Studies collections and the Federal Research Division. Her professional writings examine the interrelationship of literature, culture, and psychology with special focus on modern Chinese literature. Carolyn holds a BA in Asian studies, an MA in Chinese literature both from Cornell University, and a PhD in literature from the American University.

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Bruce Carlson

Bruce Carlson is professor emeritus in anatomy and cell biology at the University of Michigan. He previously served as Chair of the Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology in the Medical School and was also Director of the Institute of Gerontology. His research has been on limb development and regeneration and on the regeneration and transplantation of skeletal muscle, with recent emphasis on regeneration after long-term denervation and during aging. In conducting his research, he has lived in Finland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Czechoslovakia, and the Soviet Union. Along with numerous research papers, he has authored a dozen books on embryology and regeneration and has edited thirteen symposium volumes and translations. He is past president of the Association of Anatomy, Cell Biology and Neurobiology Chairpersons and also of the American Association of Anatomists. An avid fisherman and former fisheries biologist, he also writes articles for fishing magazines and recently published a book on lake biology.

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Janis Claflin

Janis Claflin is the vice chair of the board of trustees of the Fetzer Institute where she has served since 1988. Janis also serves the Institute as the chair of the investment committee. She is a management consultant and psychotherapist in Austin, Texas. As an effective public speaker and facilitator, she serves in many areas, including conflict resolution, organizational development, team building, change management, leadership development, and spiritual formation. She is the founder of several nonprofit organizations and currently serves on the board of the Empiric Fund. She has a master’s degree from Yale Divinity School.

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Bruce Fetzer

Bruce Fetzer is president and CEO and a trustee of the Fetzer Memorial Trust, a trustee and treasurer of the John E. Fetzer Institute, a trustee and member of the Foundation Financial Officers Group (FFOG, an organization of the chief investment and finance officers of the largest 200 foundations in the world), chairman of the FFOG compensation survey, and advisor to other nonprofits. A grand nephew of John Fetzer, he has served the Institute and its founder in various capacities including John Fetzer’s radio, television, and cable enterprises. He has held various financial and program assignments at the Fetzer Institute and is independently developing businesses in consulting and trust management. He holds a BS in chemical engineering and an MBA.

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Robert Lehman

Rob Lehman chairs the board of trustees of the Fetzer Institute where he served as president from 1989-2000. Under his leadership as president, the Institute developed a mission in support of mind-body-spirit health, which culminated in an Institute-funded PBS series. The groundbreaking and Emmy Award winning Healing and the Mind with Bill Moyers featured the work of a number of scientists investigating the mind-body connection. The series and an Institute-supported study published concurrently in the New England Journal of Medicine shifted popular perceptions, established the strength and significance of the mind-body-health movement, and fueled new levels of understanding and adoption by mainstream medical institutions. As chairman of the board, Rob oversaw the Institute’s transition to its new mission based in love and forgiveness and has been instrumental in the development of the board’s “deep engagement” model of governance. Before joining the Fetzer Institute, he was vice president for international affairs at the Kettering Foundation, and prior to his association with foundations Rob was an associate professor of law at the Indiana University, Indianapolis Law School. He has a law degree and a master’s degree in theology.

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Lynne Twist

Lynne Twist, an author, speaker, and consultant, is the founder and president of The Soul of Money Institute. She and her husband, Bill, are the co-founders of The Pachamama Alliance, working in the Ecuadorian Amazon with indigenous people to preserve the world’s tropical rainforests. A former long-time executive of The Hunger Project, she continues to be an advocate and spokesperson for ending world hunger and empowering women in cultures throughout the world. She serves on the boards of The Global Security Institute, Educating Girls Globally, and the Kudirat Institute for Nigerian Democracy (KIND). She serves as president of The Turning Tide Coalition and is author of the award-winning book, The Soul of Money.  

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Frances Vaughan

Frances Vaughan, PhD, is an author and psychologist in Tiburon, California. Her books include Shadows of the Sacred: Seeing through spiritual illusions, The Inward Arc: Healing in psychotherapy and spirituality, and Awakening Intuition. She is co-editor, with Roger Walsh, of Paths Beyond Ego and Gifts from a Course in Miracles. She has been a pioneer in the field of transpersonal psychology, and has lectured and conducted workshops throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, Australia and Latin America. Dr. Vaughan was formerly on the clinical faculty at the University of California Medical School at Irvine and founding faculty at the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology. She has served as president of the Association for Transpersonal Psychology and the Association for Humanistic Psychology and is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association. She is currently on the faculty of the Metta Institute in Mill Valley, CA.