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Get to know our new Executive Director, Danae Laura

We are thrilled to introduce our new Executive Director, Danae Laura!


Danae’s work has always been about nourishment: nourishing bodies, nourishing minds, and nourishing society. Before being named ED, Danae held leadership roles as a social entrepreneur in the natural food and wellness industries and the education field. Prior to joining CBI, Danae was CEO of Compassionate Commerce, Director of Selfmade, and President of The Abby Fund, among others. For Compassionate Commerce, she developed marketing campaigns for mission-based brands with fair labor practices, and for Selfmade, she marketed wellness practices to people with bodies that are often marginalized and denied access to wellness.


Danae received her B.A. in Individualized Study with a concentration in Social Justice and Education from New York University where she was a Martin Luther King Jr. Scholar. She studied art and history abroad in Ghana, West Africa as a Gilman International Fellow, and she was mentored to be a student affairs professional as a Minority Undergraduate Fellow. Danae published an anthology of art from workshops with students jailed at Rikers Island Academy called One Mic.


Upon graduation, Danae used her Dean’s Award for Graduating Seniors to launch The Abby Fund, a social justice endowment initiative in her hometown to support students of color pursuing higher education. Alongside The Abby Fund, she served on boards of The Concord Carlisle Human Rights Council as well as the Concord Carlisle Scholarship Fund.


Danae continued her education at Lesley University where she earned an M.A. in Mindfulness Studies, studying mindful leadership, neuroscience, social change, and communication. Her thesis is titled Healing Racial Injustice with Mindfulness Research, Training, & Practice. During her studies, she was honored as an emerging scholar by CMind, The Center for Contemplative Mind in Society, an organization that for many years transformed higher education by using contemplative studies in service of a more just and compassionate society. She later served on their team to review and enhance the pandemic response, as well as topics of program offerings and access.


Most recently, Danae completed the Core Certificate Leadership Program hosted by the Institute for Nonprofit Practice at Tufts University where she was trained in building community and belonging, adaptive and high-performance leadership, strength-based management, and organizational strategy. Meanwhile, a great deal of her leadership training occurred while program manager at the global Indigenous rights nonprofit Cultural Survival where she learned firsthand how to scale vision and incorporate Indigenous values of relationship and land. She has been teaching Raja style yoga for over ten years and continues to teach.


To get in touch with Danae, please email us at info@copperbeechinstitute.org.

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