The Board of Directors of the Tsoknyi Humanitarian Foundation (THF) is pleased to announce an evolution of leadership. Beginning eighteen months ago, a strategic planning process began to transition leadership and strengthen the Tsoknyi Humanitarian Foundation. As of July 1, 2020, Tsoknyi Rinpoche assumed the role of board chairman and Owsley Brown assumed the role of president. Julie Green is stepping down as Executive Director and will remain with THF as Treasurer and Financial Director. Additionally, the foundation hired its first ever paid staff member, Kristen Rockford, to serve as Operations Manager.
“I am honored and humbled by the recent board decision to elect me to serve as Board President for the Tsoknyi Humanitarian Foundation. As a longtime believer and advocate for the mission of THF, I look forward to working in a focused manner on behalf of THF’s board, donors, and broader community of supporters. This wonderful organization that Julie Green has built is on very solid footing and I believe is firmly poised for a wonderful next chapter. I am eager to do all I can to bring Rinpoche’s vision to an even fuller flower and am excited for what I hope the future will bring.” – Owsley Brown
Since its inception in November 2011, Julie Green has served many roles as a co-founder, board secretary, board treasurer, and executive director. The success of the organization is due in large part to Julie’s devotion to Tsoknyi Rinpoche and the preservation of the Tsoknyi Lineage. Her love and support of the Tsoknyi Nuns dates back to 2005 when she first visited the Tsoknyi Nangchen Nuns in Tibet.
For the past 9 years, Julie has volunteered her time as well as her home to serve as the foundation’s headquarters. Julie’s involvement and commitment, along with co-founder Jean Chang, began in Bodh Gaya, India during the 2011 Tsoknyi Rinpoche Pilgrimage. Their first fundraising presentation was in the Tergar Monastery Temple in Bodh Gaya to the Pilgrimage group. $26,000 was raised to purchase a sturdy truck that replaced the motorbike being used to transport food, medicine, and supplies to the Nuns of Chobhar Monastery, soon to be named Tsoknyi Gechak Ling.
“It has been a joy and privilege to work towards fulfilling Tsoknyi Rinpoche’s unique Vision to benefit the Tsoknyi Nuns these past 9 years. The concept of providing high quality education for girls in a third world country, preserving the Tsoknyi Lineage and advancing Dharma in female form makes my heart blaze with devotion and care. I couldn’t be more happy and confident in passing the torch to Owsley and Kristen. Thank you to all our supporters; together we’ve done some really good work for the Nuns and through them all sentient beings.” – Julie Green.
We’ve come a long way since then! Together with fellow board members Jean Chang, Michael Kunkel, and Babo Harrison, the THF worked to assist and inspire other Tsoknyi Rinpoche supporting organizations to raise funds for the construction of Tsoknyi Gechak Ling. Through the generosity of Tsoknyi Rinpoche’s supporters worldwide and the interest of people desiring to see education for girls in Third World Countries, $12 million dollars has been raised to date to build Tsoknyi Gechak Ling, a Tibetan Buddhist Nunnery and educational center in Nepal.
- Tsoknyi Gechak School
- Pema Chödrön Drubde: Nun’s Three Year Retreat
- Nun’s Shedra and Residence
- Nun’s Kitchen & Dining Hall
- Nun’s Residence in Tsoknyi Gargon Ling
- Nun’s Residence in Tsoknyi Thondroling
- Main Temple:
- Administrative Offices
- Medical Clinic
- Ritual Room
- Archive Room
- Public Kitchen & Dining Hall
- Teaching Hall
Current Projects in-progress:
- A New School Building at Tsoknyi Gechak Ling
- International Meditation Center
Not only have there been successes in fundraising but Tsoknyi Rinpoche’s vision continues to unfold. Under the guidance of former School Director, Fionnuala Shenpen, the school is successfully operating for 7 years and achieving excellent results. The girls are thriving and the first young girls to enroll in 2013 are now tall young ladies in grades 6 & 7.
- Several groups of Tsoknyi Nuns completed three year retreat
- The first group of nuns graduated from Shedra
- A new Montessori kindergarten was started
- One of the nuns originally from Nangchen, Tibet was named Lopan (a great achievement!)
- Three groups of 8th graders have graduated, many passing national exams with high marks
- Most 8th graders have chosen to progress to Shedra
In cooperation with Pundarika U.S., the original Nangchen Nuns Endowment Fund was transferred to the Tsoknyi Humanitarian Foundation and renamed the Tsoknyi Nuns Fund. Now all fundraising and information about the Tsoknyi Nuns resides at the Tsoknyi Humanitarian Foundation. Look for news about a new fundraising campaign for the Tsoknyi Nuns Fund coming soon!