Committee Members (2015-2016)
Robin Rothenberg, Accreditation Committee Chair
Robin is the Director of Essential Yoga Therapy offering quality teacher and therapist training programs grounded in the Viniyoga approach and influenced by her years of study in the Iyengar method. She teaches at Swedish and Evergreen Hospitals, offering group therapeutic classes, yoga for MS and parkinson’s and has a private yoga therapy practice at Rehab Options of Issaquah. Robin has been highly involved in yoga research, working with Group Health Research Institute on various studies including, "Comparison of Yoga, Exercise, and Education for the Treatment of Chronic Low Back Pain.” She has served on the Advisory Council for IAYT for many years and helped launch the Therapist Training Program at Mt. Royal University in Calgary, where she was adjunct faculty for four years. Robin is the author of The Essential Low Back Program: Relieve Pain and Restore Health, and Soothing the Spirit: Yoga Nidra to Reduce Anxiety. She teaches regularly at Bastyr University offering therapeutic clinics, has a 5-day training in addressing lower back conditions for certified teachers and offers workshops and retreats internationally. Robin has been deeply influenced by many teachers in the field of yoga therapy including: Gary Kraftsow, Sonia Nelson, Nischala Joy Devi, Judith Lasater and Richard Miller.
Susan Steiger Tebb, PhD, LSW, RYT, Accreditation Committee Vice-Chair
Sue, Professor, School of Social Work Saint Louis University, has centered her research around family caregiving. As a social worker for more than forty-five years she has worked with diverse family configurations and lately her research , knowledge and skill training has taken her into bringing yoga into the healing process. She is a LifeForce Yoga Practitioner Level Two, holds a Certificate of Completion in Therapeutic Yoga for Seniors from Duke Integrative Medicine and currently is working on her 500 yoga teacher training at the Himalayan Institute. She has offered a number of presentations and workshops on incorporating yoga into health/mental health care.
Sudha (Sharon) Allitt
Sudha is the founder of kula-kamala-yoga, a therapeutic approach to practice and lifestyle; Kula Kamala Foundation, a 501c3 public charity; and co-founder, together with her husband, of Kula Kamala Ashram, a spiritual school dedicated to the study of Yoga, Yoga Therapy, and Holistic Ministries in Reading PA. She is a YogaAcharya, a Professional Yoga Therapist, and an IAYT member, and a 500 E-RYT registered with Yoga Alliance. In 2015, Sudha’s 870- hour Professional Yoga Therapy program was accredited by IAYT. Sudha began practicing Yoga in her early twenties and has found it to be a continually transformative, reaffirming, and uplifting lifestyle, one which continues to help her heal from her own life experiences. A few of the training programs she has completed include: Kripalu (500YTT & Ayurvedic Yoga Specialist), Integrative Yoga Therapy (500YTT), Anusara Yoga (200 hours Certification & Mentorship), Sivananda Yoga (200YTT, YogaAcharya), Hatha Yoga Flow (200YTT), Thai Yoga w/Kam Thye Chow, and Level II Reiki w/Reiki Master Rupa Majundar. Currently, Sudha studies Yoga and its darshan under the grace and guidance of H.H. Sri Swami Adhyatmananda~ji of the Sivananda Lineage (Ahmedabad, India).
In addition to training Yoga teachers and Yoga therapists, Sudha founded two hospital-based Yoga Therapy programs in which the interns she trains receive hands on and classroom training. She works with abused and neglected children, at-risk teens, and abused women, as well as individuals seeking spiritual clarity in their life and relationships. Sudha also holds a PhD in Anthropology (specialization Biological Archaeology & Skeletal Anatomy) and has been a Professor of Cultural and Evolutionary Anthropology at Temple University and Monmouth University and graduate level Science of Meditation courses at Georgian Court University. Her academic research, including published scholarly articles, focuses on ancient diet and disease, as well as skeletal pathology associated with diet. Her academic work requires her to have advanced knowledge of human skeletal anatomy and she is considered an expert in her field. Sudha also has a deep appreciation for the arts and creates art in several mediums, including computer graphics, pencil, and acrylic, and dedicates time to every day to writing poetry. She has contributed to academic texts and won awards for her academic research. Sudha has also published a book of poetry Through the Mud Toward the Sun.
Robin is the owner of the Stress Management Center of Marin in California. Her principal certifications are from the American Yoga College (aka International Yoga College) with Rama Jyoti Vernon. She was also a Board Member of AYC. Robin's teaching experience includes yoga therapy classes at both SMC and Kaiser Permanente, and a large private practice, along with specialty classes at the Brain Injury Network of the Bay Area, sports teams, and private locations, including work with various types of anxiety, mental illness, respiratory illness and orthopedic issues.
Hansa Knox, LMT, ERYT
Hansa is an ongoing student of Kripalu yoga, and, she has integrated work from other teachers who have offered insights on the path of yoga. She utilizes yoga, yoga cikitsa, ayurveda and massage in her practice. She owns the PranaYoga and Ayurveda Mandala in Denver where she teaches yoga classes, yoga teacher and yoga therapy trainings. Hansa is president of Sanga, past president of Yoga Alliance and Yoga Teachers Of Colorado. She has served on the Board of Kripalu Center, International Yoga College and is an advisor to International Association of Yoga Therapy. www.pyamandala.com.
Molly McManus, E-RYT 500, PYT, CSE, AYS
Molly is co-owner of Yoga North International SomaYoga Institute. She enjoys her work teaching specialized group therapeutic classes and trainings, individual yoga therapy sessions, as well as being core faculty for the Institute’s teacher training and yoga therapy certification programs. Molly is sought out for her special areas of interest in chronic pain and the diseases of stress in programs she has designed such as SomaYoga for Chronic Pain, Making a Change for Good – 30 Days to Compassionate Self Discipline, The Chemistry of Joy, and Yoga for Stress, Anxiety and Depression. Molly participates in continuous training and active engagement in her field. Her current journey includes a path toward certification as an Ayurvedic Health Counselor, service on the Accreditation Board for the International Association of Yoga Therapists and engagement with national teaching and speaking engagements promoting the efficacy of yoga therapy.
Jaime Stover Schmitt, Ed.D., C.M.A., E-RYT 500
Jaime is the founder and director of Spanda® Yoga Movement Therapy, a multi-dimensional educational and therapeutic application of yoga science and philosophy. After studying throughout her childhood with a student of Kirshnamurti, Jaime continued yoga study in the U.S. and in India with H.H. Sri Swami Rama, Sri Swami Veda, and Pandit Rajmani Tigunait of Shankaracharya’s 1,200-year-old Bharati order. She is also a student of Sri Swami Chandrasekaranand of the Traditional Kundalini Vidya lineage. Jaime has served on the board of the Yoga Alliance and sits on YA’s Standards and Distance Learning Committees.
John Kepner, MA, MBA, CYTh. IAYT Executive Director
John has served as executive director since IAYT's renewal in 2003. He is a practicing yoga teacher and therapist with a professional background in economics, finance, and non-profit management. John holds teacher and therapist certifications from the American Viniyoga Institute and a teaching certification from A.G. Mohan in Chennai, India. His work for IAYT and his writings often have an economic and public policy perspective. In recent years, much of John's work has centered around organizing IAYT's practitioner and research conferences, the development of standards for the training of yoga therapists and, most recently, providing accreditation for programs that meet those standards.
Aggie Stewart, MA, RYT 500, CYT, Accreditation Manager
Aggie is a yoga teacher, yoga therapist, writer, editor, and writing teacher. For most of her editorial career, Aggie has worked in healthcare publishing and for healthcare organizations such as Children's Hospital, Boston, and Harvard Pilgrim Healthcare. As Managing Editor for Accreditation Publications at the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations, she was closely involved with the editorial development of function-based accreditation standards. Aggie has taught writing and communication skills at Loyola University, Chicago, and Johnson and Wales University in Providence, RI. In Spring 2013, she co-taught an advanced nonfiction writing course at Brown University that incorporated yoga practices designed specifically to help student writers achieve academic success.
Daniel Seitz, JD, EdD, Facilitator and Advisor to the Committee
Dan has worked for more than 20 years in the field of complementary and alternative medicine education, accreditation and regulation. He currently serves as the executive director of the Council on Naturopathic Medical Education, consults with alternative medicine colleges and organizations on accreditation, strategic planning, marketing, administration and other matters, and does professional facilitation. Dan previously served as the founding dean for the School of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine at New York Chiropractic College, chair of the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, president of New England School of Acupuncture, and chief of the Acupuncture Unit for the Massachusetts Board of Medicine.
Danielle Atkinson, BA (Hons), RYT 500, BEd, Accreditation Support
Danielle is a yoga teacher and the Director of Education for the Yoga Qigong Academy with several schools throughout Canada and China. As an international educator and curriculum writer for both the public and private education systems in Canada, Australia, and China, she is dedicated to providing innovative, inclusive learning opportunities that promote student growth and success. Danielle mostly works with "at-risk” youth, integrating yoga therapy into education, rehabilitation, resilience training, and healing. Her relationship with yoga philosophy began in 1998 at the University of Toronto, where she discovered the historical and spiritual aspects of sanatana dharma. Her interest continued to grow through her post-graduate studies in Education at the University of Western Sydney, in Australia, where she was introduced to yoga practice and ayurveda.