Dr. Shah is passionate about working with Akhila Health to teach about emotions and the mind-body connection. She strongly believes this will empower women towards understanding how to make a positive change in their lives. Dr. Shah has a doctorate (Ed.D) in Curriculum and Teaching from Teachers College, Columbia University. She is a senior lecturer in the Child and Adolescent Development Department at San Jose State University. She is also the Founder of My Social Edge. My Social Edge empowers children, and their parents, to learn critical social and emotional skills.
Sandy has a background in psychology and integrative health studies, and she is also a National Board-Certified Health and Wellness coach. She is currently a doctoral student in the Mind-Body Medicine program at Saybrook University, where she is also involved in facilitating various projects, such as the Mindfulness Moments program and Mind-Body-Spirit Integration seminar. She also works as a graduate teaching assistant and supports the Mind-Body Medicine faculty in operating their courses.
Zoe is a Bay Area native and recent graduate of Colgate University, where she received her Bachelor of Arts in neuroscience. With a passion for medicine and science, Zoe started medical school in the summer of 2023. Throughout her journey towards becoming a physician, Zoe has been an advocate for equitable and inclusive healthcare and was thrilled when she found out about Akhila Health and its mission to support underserved women. She has been especially excited about Akhila Health’s focus on holistic and integrative approaches for empowering women. Zoe hopes to use the tools and expertise she’s learned through facilitating holistic wellness workshops at Akhila Health to continue to support underserved communities throughout her career.
Dr. Natasha Bernard grew up in the desert climate of Phoenix, Arizona and fell in love with the Bay Area when she moved to Oakland to earn her B.A. in Biochemistry and Molecular Cell Biology at Mills College. She completed Osteopathic Medical School at Touro University in Vallejo in 2009, and became board certified in Family Medicine in 2012 after residency in Santa Rosa. Working with the underserved has been one of the most rewarding and inspiring aspects of her medical practice. She has been volunteering locally at the Fountain Project since 2013 and in 2018 she traveled to the Dominican Republic with her daughter Brooklyn to volunteer medical services at the Orphanage in La Urena. In her free time she enjoys cooking, hiking, swimming, meditating, practicing yoga and relaxing with her family and friends.
Courtney Marchesani, M.S. received her Master’s in Mind-Body Medicine from Saybrook University and has worked in in mental health and integrative medicine. Marchesani’s work in mental health and supportive housing programs began in residential treatment. Her work evolved and expanded to focus on issues that impact affordable housing and treatment models. Marchesani’s social justice, advocacy, and lobbying for supportive housing led to several successful grant-funded projects including Shelter Plus Care Homeless Assistance Grant, Special Section-8, HUD-202, and HUD 811.
Leonard (Len) Shen is a facilitator specializing in providing energetic self-healing skills. Len teaches Qi Gong, a 3,000-year-old Chinese practice for purging trauma and enhancing well-being, and is a certified Chinese Energetic Medicine Therapist and an ordained priest. Len is also a Harvard-trained lawyer and former corporate chief ethics officer, is the Chairman of the Board of three publicly traded financial institutions, and on the Board of HomeFirst, a nonprofit serving over 5,000 homeless people a year.
Kristen is a first year osteopathic medical student at Touro University California. She is excited to be working with Akhila Health to help individuals understand the mind, body, spirit connection and empower them to make a positive change in their lives. In her free time, Kristen enjoys gardening and hiking.
Charlie has been working in the health and wellness industry since 2012. She is a trained plant-based chef, certified holistic health coach, and a doctoral student in the Mind-Body Medicine department at Saybrook University. She currently lives in Santa Fe, NM where she provides health-supportive meals and health coaching to the community. As a facilitator at Akhila, she looks forward to supporting women in their journey to optimal health and happiness.