Leslie (she/her) is the co-founder and Executive Director of the Center for Compassion Studies in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences. She is a lead facilitator of CBCT® (Cognitively Based Compassion Training) and other compassion training programs and workshops. As a lead facilitator of many of the Center for Compassion Studies programs, she has shared compassion and mindfulness practices and programs with a broad audience including adolescents in foster care, Native American youth, transgender youth, behavioral health professionals, early childhood professionals, and interested community members. In partnership with scientists and faculty at UArizona and other universities, she engages in research to further scientific findings about the impacts of compassion and mindfulness practices on health and relationship quality. She holds certifications in yoga instruction, yoga therapy, and southwestern herbal medicine, all of which additionally contribute to the shaping of the variety of programs and classes offered through the Center.
Leslie developed and teaches two undergraduate courses in the Department of Sociology, and the College of SBS. She also shares wellness and mindfulness practices during the academic year with students, faculty and staff through various campus programs.
A licensed clinical social worker, Leslie has a background as a psychotherapist working with children, youth and adults, and has held leadership positions in the non-profit sector in Florida, Washington D.C. area, and New York City. She received both her bachelor’s degree in Sociology and Psychology and Master of Social Work degree from Florida State University.