Alameda Sangha meetings are led by a rotating group of teachers, primarily in the Theravada tradition. Many of these teachers have websites with notes or recordings of their talks; please check those websites if you are interested. Our  longtime teachers Rebecca Dixon and Deb Kerr provide Alameda Sangha's spiritual guidance and direction. We are deeply grateful to them and to all of our dharma teachers. 

Guiding Teachers

Rebecca Dixon
 (she/her/hers) studied Buddhism as a graduate student in Anthropology and has maintained a daily practice since 1992, with numerous long retreats.  She has spent many years sharing the dharma and practice opportunities with hospice patients, incarcerated women, and the chemically dependent. She completed Spirit Rock's Community Dharma Leader training, is a member of the Chaplaincy Council at Insight Meditation Center in Redwood City, and helped found the East Bay Meditation Center.  

Rebecca has led a sitting group on Monday nights in Oakland since 2002, and teaches occasionally at IMC. She co-founded Alameda Sangha in 2010. For more information, visit RebeccaDixon.org and subscribe to her monthly blog post. 

Debra Kerr
 (she/her/hers) is a partner, mother, grandmother, and retired speech pathologist who has meditated since 1991 and taught since 2002. She is influenced by both Vipassana and Dzogchen practices. A graduate of Spirit Rock's Community Dharma Leader program, Deb is a Core Teacher at East Bay Meditation Center, where she also guides the Every Body Every Mind Sangha for people with disabilities and chronic illness. 

Deb is especially interested in using all of the tools of Buddhist practice to help dismantle racism, and she loves maximizing well-being through the practices of loving-kindness, compassion, and wisdom.


JD Doyle (they/them/theirs) serves as a Core Teacher at the East Bay Meditation Center in Oakland, CA and is completing the Spirit Rock teacher-training. JD has practiced Buddhism since 1995 in the U.S., Thailand, and Burma. For over twenty years, they worked as a public school teacher. JD holds a BS in Environmental Studies from Cornell University and a Masters in Language and Literacy and Sociocultural Studies from the University of New Mexico. 

JD identifies as genderqueer. They are committed to celebrating diversity, addressing racial injustice, expanding concepts of gender, and honoring the sacredness of the Earth. For more information visit Heartmindteaching.com

Kenji Oshima
(he/him/his) has been meditating for about half of his adult life, and has been curious about spirituality as both a teacher and a student of Buddhist teachings, Christianity, Taoism, and the I Ching. He graduated from East Bay Meditation Center’s yearlong programs: Commit to Dharma and Practice in Transformative Action, where he teaches for the Every Body Every Mind Sangha.

Kenji moved to the Bay Area in 1993 to act as a community organizer, nationally, for gay Asian and Pacific Islander HIV prevention groups. As a business and life coach he focuses on other professionals who seek life, professional, and spiritual balance. He has a unique perspective as a bi-racial/bi-cultural/bi-coastal, differently-abled, gay man. For more information, visit coachkenji.com.

Amma Thanasanti
first encountered the Dharma in 1979. A former Buddhist nun of 26 years, her teaching combines the rigor of Ajahn Chah Forest Tradition, compassion, pure awareness practices, a passion for wholeness,and  nature. Amma has been teaching intensive meditation retreats around the world since 1995. 

Amma’s teaching style emphasizes deep listening, authenticity, inquiry, fierce compassion, warmth, humor and an unwavering commitment to presence. She feels a calling to do her own work so that students from diverse communities feel supported and are able to connect across differences. She invites an openness to pause and inquire into the truth of the present moment, integrating adaptive skillful means and rooted traditional approaches. For more, visit awakeningtruth.org.