Meet the New Center Director
Updated: Mar 9, 2018
Jessica Bizub will take the oath of office as the Shambhlala Center's new Director at a community gathering to be held on Saturday, March 17th, at 11:00am. An address by Jessica and a community conversation will follow. All are welcome.
The search committee's work has been completed. The Director opening was announced and the requisite qualifications were disseminated to the Shambhala community at a local and international level. Candidates were interviewed and a recommendation was made to Shambhala International for review and final approval by the Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. Word came on Friday, March 2, that the Sakyong had approved the appointment of Jessica Bizub as our new Center Director.
On a whim, Jessica took a one-credit meditation class while studying English literature and political science at Marquette University. There she was struck by the kindness and honesty of Pema Chödrön, which later led her to the Milwaukee Shambhala Center in 2010, during a period of intense suffering with no discernible cause (Hello, First Noble Truth!).
Since becoming a member of Shambhala in 2012, Jessica has served as the Tuesday Night Open House Coordinator and most recently as Rusung and Representative of the Pillar of Protection on the Governing Council from 2014 to 2018. She is a Shambhala Guide, and also served as a household staff member and as the Court Security Officer for four visits in Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche’s Chicago court. Jessica has completed two dathüns—one as a participant and another as a coordinator—and is committed to deepening her meditative journey.
Born in Milwaukee and raised in Mukwonago, Jessica currently lives with her husband Paul and cat Frejya in Bay View. Her day job is in applied social science research, assisting government, educational, and nonprofit organizations in measuring their impact and understanding the context in which they work. She enjoys hiking, playing the ukulele, and doing the laundry (really!).
Jessica on her new responsibilities:
Shambhala has provided me a glimpse of my own unconditional goodness, a way to steep in that experience, recognize that inherent dignity in others, and bring that understanding to relationships and every day life. Although I came to Shambhala for myself, I stayed for the vision of enlightened society. As Center Director, I hope to help others experience that as well.
Our Thanks to retiring Director Leslie Shippee.
Jessica assumes the mantle of Director from the retiring Leslie Shippee. Leslie served her three-year term as Director with a tireless energy and truly fearless devotion to the Sakyong and the mission of Center in propagating the vision of the Shambhala Dharma in creating enlightened society.