Our Staff | David Lynch Foundation

The David Lynch Foundation Staff

Bob Roth

Bob Roth
Chief Executive Officer

Bob Roth is one of the most experienced and sought-after meditation teachers in America. Over the past 50 years, Bob has taught Transcendental Meditation (TM) to many thousands of people and is the author of the definitive book on the subject, the New York Times bestseller “Strength in Stillness: The Power of Transcendental Meditation" (Simon and Schuster, 2018). As the CEO of the David Lynch Foundation, Bob has helped provide TM scholarships for over one million urban youth, veterans who suffer from post-traumatic stress, women and children who are survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault, and healthcare workers on the frontlines of the Covid-19 pandemic. Bob also directs the Center for Resilience, which is bringing the meditation to Fortune 100 companies, government and military organizations, and other community service organizations. Bob is the host of the iHeartRadio podcast, “Stay Calm with Bob Roth” and the SiriusXM radio show, "Success Without Stress. He has spoken about the science of meditation to industry leaders at such gatherings as Google Zeitgeist, Aspen Ideas Festival, Wisdom2.0, Summit, Global Wellness Summit, and CURA’s Unite To Cure at The Vatican.

Executive Staff

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Adam Friedman
Senior Director of Programs

After a fun but ultimately unfulfilling career as an advertising copywriter, Adam left the corporate world to work for a series of social service providers that help homeless individuals, formerly incarcerated men and women, domestic violence survivors, and individuals receiving welfare benefits. While he did witness some amazing transformations, he found that many well-intentioned social service interventions fail to lead to positive outcomes. He concluded that a main reason is that they do not adequately address the effects of traumatic experiences that have shaped many of their clients' lives. Adam believes that Transcendental Meditation works like a magic wand to address trauma and could be the missing link to help social service providers affect lasting change in a greater percentage of the people they serve. He is thrilled to have the opportunity to be a part of this effort.

Adam also likes to juggle knives.

Adam Pressman

Adam Pressman
Director of Media Production and Development

Since an early age, Adam was fascinated with the visual arts. Adam held summer jobs working for NBC News, ABC News, and Guggenheim Productions in Washington, DC, and holds a degree in Radio, TV, and Film from Northwestern University. Adam's deep interest in Transcendental Meditation led to nearly 30 years of advanced study and globe-trotting adventures teaching meditation. As a founding member of the David Lynch Foundation, Adam joined his love of visual media with his passion for “diving within.” Adam's greatest joy is in meeting and interviewing people whose lives are being transformed through the work of the Foundation, and sharing these incredibly inspiring stories with the world.

Fredda L. Plesser

Fredda L. Plesser
Executive Vice President

Fredda is the Executive Vice President for the David Lynch Foundation. After 15 years as a practicing attorney, Fredda entered the non-profit arena to focus on bringing services and relief to underserved communities. From 2003 until 2011, Fredda was Senior Vice President, Chair and Executive Director of the Michael Tyler Fisher Center for Education of the Intrepid Museum in Manhattan. For 3 years prior to joining the Intrepid, Ms. Plesser served as the Chancellor’s Chief Executive for the Office of Corporate Partnerships at the New York City Department of Education. As an attorney, Ms. Plesser was Associate General Counsel for the Securities Industry Association and Litigation Partner for Tenzer Greenblatt LLP, currently known as Blank Rome LLP. Ms. Plesser holds a BS from Cornell University and a JD from Fordham University School of Law.

Hayley Hanna

Hayley Hanna
Vice President of Programs and Partnerships

Originally from Manchester, England, Hayley and her husband, Chris, moved to New York in 2016. Hayley brings 13 years of experience as an inspirational teacher and “Head of Department.” Her career has been focused on closing the achievement gap in underserved areas and eradicating barriers to learning so that all students can access the opportunities to fulfill their greatest potential. Hayley has a track record of deep commitment in building strong and positive teams and leaving behind trails of happier students and teachers who are enthusiastic about learning. Her work led her to the honor of admission into a highly competitive principal-training program to prepare her for a leadership role in education. In her spare time, Hayley loves to read, travel, and explore the city she now calls home. She has a passion for film and will often be found watching movies from all over the world.

Jessica Wisk

Jessica Harris
Vice President

Jessica Harris is the Vice President, Events & Marketing for the Foundation. She focuses on funding the Foundation's programs through events featuring the world's leading musicians, including Katy Perry, Sting, Duran Duran, Moby, Ringo Starr, Jack White, Dixie Chicks and Brendan Benson.

Jessica has more than a decade of experience in the music and event production industry working with non-profits and start-ups. She also produces Communion Presents’ New York residency, a London-based promotion and record label founded by Ben Lovett of Mumford and Sons. Her events have been featured in Billboard, Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, New York Times and more.

Prior to joining the Foundation, Jessica partnered with Donna Karan's Urban Zen, where she completed yoga teacher training to bring yoga, nutrition and meditation to at-risk populations. Through Urban Zen, she connected with the David Lynch Foundation to merge her passion for music, meditation and event production to create a difference for the greater good.

Joshua Pittman

Joshua Pittman
TM Teacher

As a native New Yorker, Joshua uses his meditation to help keep him sane. He has been practicing Transcendental Meditation since he was 16 years old and began teaching TM in 2005. Joshua has a BFA in Film & TV Production from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts and worked in post-production sound before shifting careers. He was co-director of the NYC TM centers for 10 years and is proud to now teach TM to school students, veterans, and homeless individuals and seeing their transformation from experiencing damaging stress to developing profound peace. When he is not teaching, Joshua enjoys watching movies and swimming in the ocean with his wife and daughter.

Lynn Kaplan

Lynn Kaplan
Regional Director of DLF Los Angeles

Lynn Kaplan is Director of The David Lynch Foundation in Los Angeles. Her responsibilities include overseeing and implementation of the TM Quiet Time program through partnership programs that serve high at-risk students, veterans suffering from PTS, the chronically homeless and abused young women and girls. She is a certified teacher of Transcendental Meditation and has worked with the David Lynch Foundation since it was founded in 2005. Lynn has worked for the Mayor’s Council on Youth in St. Louis and was Director of Weaver High School’s TM Quiet Time program in Hartford, CT from 2006-2010, which produced published research on the positive impact TM has had on improving graduation rates and significantly lowering drop out rates. Lynn was also a high school teacher for ten years at MSAE in Fairfield, Iowa, and is a mother of three.

Rena Boone

Rena Boone
Senior Certified TM Teacher, DLF Ambassador

Rena Boone is the Executive Director of The Meditation Center at THEARC which serves the community in Wards 7 and 8 in southeast D.C. She has been a teacher of Transcendental Meditation for the past 40 years as well as a classroom teacher/educator, and consultant. From 2010 through 2017 she was the Director of the TM/Quiet Time Program at Ideal Academy Public Charter School in the District.

Rena has devoted her life to transforming the field of education through the holistic development of students to achieve their full potential. As a consciousness-based educator she has been highly successful in using Transcendental Meditation (TM), an evidence-based meditation technique, to help students prepare themselves for learning, reduce stress and achieve their full potential. Since January of 2018, in addition to working with school environments, Rena has been serving in a wider role and capacity to provide knowledge and training of Transcendental Meditation to help prevent and eliminate the epidemic of toxic stress and trauma which undermines the health and well-being of individuals, families and the whole community.

Sarah Sica

Sarah Sica
Director of Programs, Center For Health & Wellness

Sarah has taught Transcendental Meditation in Colorado, Iowa, New Hampshire and other states nationwide. She became a Certified TM Teacher in 2012 and joined the DLF later that same year. Before coming to New York City, Sarah worked for four years as a Site Leader implementing the David Lynch Foundation’s “Quiet Time/TM Program” in middle and high schools in Los Angeles. In NYC, Sarah is a lead teacher with the Center for Health & Wellness teaching TM courses for veterans with PTSD, survivors of domestic and gender-based violence and sexual assault, as well as for government staff and business professionals. Sarah has been practicing TM since she was 10 years old and brings a lifetime of experience to her TM students. She is passionate about consciousness-based education and has pursued it throughout her life. She also is a golfer and has a background in the arts and continues those pursuits in her free time.

Velky Valentin

Velky Marte
Vice President, Finance

Velky joined the foundation in 2014 from the world of arts and dance. Prior to joining the Foundation, Velky worked as Controller at the Africa Center in Harlem and Dance Theater Workshop in Chelsea. She has over 20 years of nonprofit experience. She has a degree in Accounting with a concentration in Business Administration from Baruch College.

Velky is extremely vibrant, personable with a tremendous client service orientation and detail oriented. With patience, candor and humor she has managed the finances of cultural organizations in NYC. During this time, she has been able to link her career aspirations with her passion for the arts, meditation and non-profits.

On her spare time, Velky is running around to her son’s basketball, baseball and/or football games. Velky loves to travel, attend concerts, cook and watch movies.

The DLF Team

Becky Fleming

Becky Fleming, CPA
Associate Director of Finance

Far from the usual, Becky is an absurdly non boring accountant. Enthused by all things numbers, organized, and green, Becky enjoys baking, running, and the occasional Friends episode (a.k.a marathon). In addition to her work at DLF, she continues to maintain the books for a small non-profit, StartingBloc. Becky holds a degree in Accounting and Finance from University of Maryland, and has two pets at home, if you include her husband.

Benedict Carrizzo

Benedict Carrizzo
Special Projects Consultant

Benedict Carrizzo is an award-winning journalist and recent graduate of Fordham University. He learned Transcendental Meditation at the age of 16. That decision, aided by a financial gift from his loving, late grandmother, ended up being the most important for his formative years. Transcendental Meditation has eased his difficult moments, and made the good ones all the more sweeter. He is incredibly grateful to have the opportunity at the David Lynch Foundation to give this gift to others — all while utilizing his skills as a writer and editor. Benedict is also a long-time drummer and foodie with (almost) unhealthy obsessions with New York City, traveling, Italian food and Game of Thrones.

Casey Williams

Casey Williams
Associate Director of Digital Marketing

Casey joined the Foundation in 2018 from the world of sports social media, having worked at the NBA and MLB. He earned a BA in journalism and media production from Franklin Pierce University in New Hampshire.

After moving to New York in 2014, Casey found a belief in the universal benefits of meditation from the work of Dan Harris as well as from Russell Brand, friend of the DLF and student of Bob Roth. Prior to joining DLF, Casey pursued his certification as a meditation teacher, and sought modern ways to share the practice with all people. He feels very fortunate to align that mission with the David Lynch Foundation.

Chris Busch

Chris Busch
Regional Director of Development and Expansion

Chris is a founding member of the David Lynch Foundation, present from its creation in July 2005. A 40-year practitioner and teacher of the Transcendental Meditation program, Chris works with his wife Julia to expand outreach and development opportunities for the Foundation in Chicago.

Darcy Valenti

Darcy Valenti
Director of Philanthropy

Darcy Valenti serves as the Director of Philanthropy, overseeing the David Lynch Foundation's strong and diverse fundraising program. In her role, she works to establish the overarching strategy for all verticals within the foundation's institutional and individual giving programs. As DLF continues to scale, she focuses on the development of tailored efforts to enhance the performance of each revenue stream to maximize the organization's impact in the vulnerable communities they serve.

Prior to joining the David Lynch Foundation, Darcy served as a Major Gifts Officer at Team Rubicon. There she oversaw principle giving in the North East and grew their signature event, the Salute to Service Awards into a multi-million dollar event, raising over $10.5 million during her tenure. She also worked for the American Red Cross, the American Diabetes Association, and the National Kidney Foundation in a variety of development roles.

A native of Northern Virginia, Darcy, lives with her husband and two daughters in Ridgewood, New Jersey.

Julia Busch

Julia Busch
Regional Director of Development and Expansion

Julia graduated from Regis College with a degree in Biology and her passion is to help people in the field of health and wellness. She learned the Transcendental Meditation (TM) technique in college, soon realized that TM is one of the most powerful tools to help pursue her passion and decided to become a TM teacher. Julia has been teaching TM for almost 40 years and through her work with the Institute of Science, Technology and Public Policy, she connected with business, government and policy makers to bring the prevention-based solutions of the TM Program to society. Julia is one of the founders of the David Lynch Foundation and is now focusing on Development and Expansion in Chicago and California.

Kelly Malloy

Kelly Malloy
Senior TM Teacher

Kelly was born and raised in the small town of Fairfield, Iowa, where she learned the TM technique at the age of 10. From an early age, Kelly wanted to become a TM teacher in order to instruct young people how to meditate and help them manage their stressful lives. So after receiving her BFA in Interior Design at the American Intercontinental University in Los Angeles, she later became certified as a TM teacher in 2015 and moved to New York City to join the David Lynch Foundation where she has served for five years as the Site Leader for the DLF's “Quiet Time” program in New York area schools. Kelly says she loves being a mentor and providing a positive role model for children and teens while teaching them a technique they can use for the rest of their lives. She is also teaching TM to doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers who are the frontlines of the Covid-19 pandemic as part of the DLF’s Heal the Healers Now initiative. When she is not teaching, Kelly enjoys cooking, DJ’ing and dancing to house music and spending quality time with family and friends.

Lea Cho

Lea Cho
Director of Programs and Special Projects

Lea Cho joined DLF and TMC@THEARC in 2018 as Director of Programs. She brings to the role 15 years of wide-ranging project management experience, including global marketing at Calvin Klein Cosmetics, research management at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and product development at National League for Nursing. In addition, her diverse background aligns closely with the mission of THEARC. She earned her BA in Anthropology and Linguistics from New York University with a focus on Caribbean Studies and African American Vernacular English (AAVE); worked on documentary film production for channel THIRTEEN (PBS’ flagship station) on subjects such as the foster care system and poverty; and served as Associate at Metris Arts Consulting, assisting on high-caliber community impact research evaluations commissioned by New England Foundation for the Arts (Boston), Art Blocks and Arts on Chicago, the City of Minneapolis, and Book Café in Harare, Zimbabwe. She is also an accomplished musician, arts community advocate, and music educator. After learning TM in 2014 and experiencing the profound benefits throughout her personal and professional life, she was inspired to become a certified TM instructor, and since then she has had the honor of teaching TM to corporate leaders, military personnel, government workers, and survivors of trauma, through many inspiring programs at the David Lynch Foundation.

Lindsey Ganey

Lindsey Ganey
Program Coordinator, Heal The Healers Now

As the Heal the Healers Now Program Coordinator, Lindsey manages daily logistics and programming for all of DLF's national hospital sites. She supports the development and implementation of programs, as well as the continuous research of new opportunities for growth within the HTHN initiative.

Prior to joining the DLF team, Lindsey worked as the Academic Accommodations Coordinator at Northeastern University’s Disability Resource Center and was tasked with supporting students with disabilities, as well as managing the testing center and all office operations. Lindsey has also served with AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps as a Corps Member and Wellness Representative. In this role, Lindsey traveled throughout the southeastern United States aiding families impacted by natural disasters. During this time, she learned the profound power of meditation and led her team in guided meditations weekly. In her free time, Lindsey loves to spend the day at the beach and hang out with her cat, Dewey.

Nia Smith

Nia Smith
Development Operations Manager

After a short-lived career in media, Nia embraced and immersed herself in the world of fund development, finding her niche in operations. Consumed by all things bread, she is an avid runner and reader. Nia is a graduate of Hunter College with a degree in Media Arts and English. She is passionate about her community and enjoys volunteering whenever possible. Having experienced it firsthand as a navy veteran, Nia is a firm believer in the power of TM. She is a native of Brooklyn, where she lives with her dog Chuleta.

Genevieve Kimberlin

Peter Lamoureux
Lead TM Teacher

Peter Lamoureux is the lead TM instructor at David Lynch Foundation. Peter has taught TM to thousands of people over 40 years. Mr.Lamoureux has been working with David Lynch Foundation teaching veterans with PTS and is the Director of Programs for Operation Warrior Wellness. Peter is a non combat veteran of the US Army and US Army Reserves, MOS 71Q20 Information Specialist (journalist / photographer).

In addition, Mr. Lamoureux is the President and principal owner of Everest Asset Management, Inc. Everest sponsors the Everest Fund, L.P., an investment fund that has been in continuous operation 30 years. He has both securities and commodities licenses.

Mr. Lamoureux has a BS in Education and formerly held a certificate to teach in secondary education.

Peter has daughters in Brooklyn, Austin and Boulder, and is an avid motorcyclist when not teaching TM to veterans.

Sam Lieb

Sam Lieb
Creative Director

Sam is passionate about documenting stories of transformation incited through the David Lynch Foundation's TM programs. Over the past 7 years, Sam has enjoyed traveling the world, from Europe, to Asia, South America, and all over North America, to meet an expansive variety of people with profound stories of change. Together with the DLF.TV team, Sam's aim is to provide videos that will inspire and raise funds necessary for DLF to provide TM for any person in the world in need. Sam is also an artist and creates masks and puppets for film and theatre.

Sean Slifer

Sean Slifer
Senior Manager, Program Evaluation

As Senior Manager of Program Evaluation, Sean helps to plan and implement the measurement of outcomes for all DLF programs across the country. After growing up in Brooklyn, he earned a degree in Biology from the University of Rochester. Prior to joining DLF, Sean spent most of his career at the National Kidney Foundation, working with doctors and researchers to develop clinical practice guidelines that provided evidence-based recommendations for a variety of kidney related diseases.

Vin DeCrescenzo

Vin DeCrescenzo
Sr. Director of Programs and Outreach

In 2016 Vin showed up at DLF offering to build a new website and has just kept showing up everyday since. He joined DLF after a long career in film, television and digital marketing. He began his career at Good Morning America working for film critic Joel Seigel. He later went on to write and direct several short films and documentaries of his own. He spent many years as a digital marketing consultant helping organizations to grow online. Vin has applied that wealth of experience to dramatically expand DLF’s programs, communications and partnerships with first responder and veteran serving organizations throughout the U.S. Those efforts have helped to bring TM to thousands of worthy veterans. He was instrumental in launching the largest research study ever conducted on meditation and PTSD. Learning TM and working at a non-profit for the first time were both transformative experiences in his life. Vin is a father of two and a lifelong New Yorker. He is a graduate of Colgate University.

Los Angeles

Peter Trivelas

Peter Trivelas
TM Instructor

Peter graduated from The Albany Academy military academy and served in the US Navy in Vietnam on the USS Intrepid as a Photographic Intelligence Petty Officer. After earning a BFA degree in filmmaking from the San Francisco Art Institute, Peter worked for 30+ years in the television industry, editing and producing for all the major television networks and a variety of production companies such as Martha Stewart Living Television and The Discovery Channel.

In 1974, Peter completed his Transcendental Meditation teacher training in Vittel, France and has taught in TM Centers and for many DLF projects since. Currently, Peter is proud to bring healing and meditation to veterans and at-risk students as a TM teacher at DLF Los Angeles.

Washington DC

Adora Iris

Adora Iris Lee, MPH, M.Div.
Senior Program Advisor

As Senior Program Advisor, Adora Iris Lee is responsible for program planning, evaluation and monitoring, as well as developing strategic partnerships with key community organizations and D.C. agencies that serve Ward 7 and 8 residents. She is a Yale trained public health professional with over 30 years of experience designing and implementing community-based health promotion and disease prevention projects in Washington D.C., Southern Africa, Eastern Europe and the Middle East.

Ms. Lee is also a Ward 8 resident and serves as an Ambassador with the D.C. Office on Aging and Community Living and the Phillips Collection @THEARC. She is an active volunteer with WC Smith’s Building Bridges to a Better Life homelessness prevention initiative and a member of the United Planning Organization’s Health Community Advisory Board.

Michelle Wright

Michelle Wright
Program Coordinator, The Meditation Center @ THEARC

Michelle grew up in Ward 8, D.C., where economic and food disparities remain an issue. Facing these problems every day, she has spent the last 12 years working in different ways to support her community through the lens of mental health and by finding other resources.

As Program Coordinator for TMC @ THEARC, Michelle is responsible for planning and coordinating programs and activities, supporting evaluation and monitoring, recruitment and outreach, marketing, program administration, and building a rapport with the community of meditators, community organizations, and D.C. agencies serving Wards 7 and 8 residents. In addition, she has worked as a mental health advocate over the last ten years, supporting violence survivors, low-income students, college readiness support, and more.

Michelle currently resides in Ward 7, D.C. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Mental Health from Fairleigh Dickinson University.

Raisa Martinez

Raisa Martinez
Director, The Meditation Center @ THEARC

Since the summer of 2014 Raisa has worked with the David Lynch Foundation in New York City before joining the Washington DC team in September 2020. After becoming a certified teacher in Transcendental Meditation in 2017 she spent most of her time in the Education wing of DLF serving students, faculty and key administration throughout the NYC DOE. Raisa has also enjoyed teaching within different teams at DLF including: the Center for Health and Wellness, Manhattan Family Justice Center, and the Bronx VA. Since joining the Washington DC team, she has taught on various special projects associated with The Meditation Center @ THEARC, Walter Reed Medical Center, DCVA, and the DuPont Circle TM office.

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