For the last 40 years, Laurie Grossman has worked in nonprofits and schools creating programs to empower families and children living in underserved communities. Laurie’s passion, energy, creativity and sense of justice have enabled her to imagine innovative methods to address problems, and she has helped schools look at how to serve their students in new ways. At Park Day School, in North Oakland, California, she created partnerships between private and public schools. In 2007, working through the partnerships she had developed at Park, she experimented with bringing mindfulness to the classroom. With the help of three others, Laurie was able to turn this experiment into Mindful Schools, a vibrant organization that has trained over 300,000 teachers and students in the last 10 years.
Laurie believes that mindfulness is a vital component for social justice and educational equity, so she left Mindful Schools at the end of 2011 to work exclusively with low-income communities. In 2014, she joined the team at Inner Explorer, almost incredulous that her new colleagues figured out a way to spread mindfulness to schools, students and teachers easily, effectively, inexpensively, sustainably and with scalability. In 2016, New Harbinger published a book she wrote with fifth-graders in East Oakland called Master of Mindfulness: How to Be Your Own Superhero in Times of Stress.