Valerie York-Zimmerman has practiced meditation since the late 1980’s and in Jan.1998 was accepted into and completed the MBSR Professional Internship Program at UMass Medical Center’s Stress Reduction Clinic, Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care and Society, founded by Jon Kabat-Zinn in 1979. She participated in 2 concurrent MBSR Internship Programs with Ferris Buck Urbanowski and Florence Meleo-Meyer.
In 1998 Valerie began teaching in her husband Dr. Leonard Zimmerman’s South Dade Primary Care medical office and in other clinical or institutional settings.
She has continued to deepen her practice, broaden her experience, and sharpen her skills by participating in mindfulness meditation retreats and teacher trainings with leading meditation masters from both the East and the West. The following is listing of certifications, training programs, and retreats Valerie has completed over the years:
- UMass Teacher Certification in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) awarded by the Center for Mindfulness at the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society, University of Massachusetts Medical School.
- Omega, 3-Day Mindfulness and Trauma Conference with Rhonda Magee, Florence Meleo-Meyer, David Treleavan, Lynn Koerbel and Jon Kabat-Zinn on Zoom, Rhinebeck, NY (2019)
- MBSR “Old” Teachers 5-Day Residential Retreat with Ferris Buck Urbanowski and Jon Kabat-Zinn at Mt. Madonna Retreat Center, Watsonville, CA (2018)
- UCSD Annual MBPTI Mentors Meeting with Steve Hickman, et al., and MBI:TAC Training with Rebecca Crane at UCSD CFM, San Diego, CA (2018)
- Omega, 5-Day “Coming to Our Senses” Residential Retreat with Jon Kabat-Zinn at Rhinebeck, NY (2018)
- Mindfulness in Schools Project (MiSP) Teacher Certification, 4-Day Mindfulness for Teens .b Teacher Training with Ted DesMaisons, Anima Learning, US Partner, Miami (2017)
- UCSD MBPTI Annual Mentors Training Meeting with Steve Hickman, et al., at UCSD CFM, San Diego, CA (2017)
- Omega, 5-Day Mindful Self-Compassion Training Retreat with Steven Hickman and Michelle Becker, Rhinebeck, NY (2016).
- Omega, 5-Day PT for the Prevention of Depression with Susan Woods and Zindel Segal, Rhinebeck, NY (2016).
- Kripalu, 5-Day Wise and Loving Heart: Meditation for Freedom Residential Retreat with Jack Kornfield, Stockbridge, MA (2015)
- UCSD Center for Mindfulness, MBSR 6-Day Teacher Training Retreat, Co-Teacher with Susan Woods, Char Wilkins, Allan Goldstein, Tampa, Florida (2015).
- UCSD Center for Mindfulness, MBSR 5-Day Teacher Training Retreat, Ass’t Teacher with Susan Woods and Char Wilkins, Madison, Virginia (2014).
- UCSD CFM “Bridging the Hearts & Minds of Youth: Mindfulness in Clinical Practice, Education and Research Conference,” San Diego, CA (2014)
- Mindful Education Institute (MEI) – 2012-2013 year-long, in-depth training to equip educators to effectively design and deliver mindfulness programs to children and teens with leading teachers including: Jon Kabat-Zinn, Jack Kornfield, Daniel Rechtschaffen, Chris McKenna, Megan Cowan, Vinny Ferraro, Susan Kaiser-Greenland, Linda Lantieri, Meena Srinivasan, et.al., at Mt. Madonna Retreat Center, California (2012-2013).
- 10-Day Insight Meditation Retreat for MBSR & MBCT Professionals with Jon Kabat-Zinn, Christina Feldman (Gaia House), John Teasdale, Cambridge University (retired) at Spirit Rock Meditation Center, Woodacre, CA (2009).
- MBSR-MBCT Advanced Teaching and Study Residential Retreats for MBSR and MBCT Teachers with Ferris Buck Urbanowski at Sky Meadow Retreat Center, Greensboro Bend, Vermont (2007, 2011)
- MBSR-MBCT Advanced Teaching and Study Program in Mindfulness-Based Approaches for MBCT Teachers Residential Retreat with Ferris Buck Urbanowski and Susan Woods, Sky Meadow Retreat Center, Greensboro Bend, Vermont (2006)
- UMass Center for Mindfulness, UMass Medical School, Professional Training Teaching Supervision successfully competed with Florence Meleo-Meyer, Senior Teacher CFM Teacher (2003)
- Western Regional MBSR Teacher’s 3-Day Retreat with Ferris Buck Urbanowski at Joseph & Mary Retreat Center, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA (2002)
- 10-Day “Advanced” Vipassana Teacher Training Residential Retreat successfully completed with Venerable Bhante Henepola Gunaratana, Ph.D., at Bhavana Society Forest Monastery Meditation Center, High View, WV (2003)
- Centre for Addiction, Mental Health Education & Training, University of Toronto, 7-Day Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) 1st Workshop/ Residential Retreat Teacher Training with Drs. Segal, Williams, Teasdale, Kabat-Zinn, and Ferris Buck Urbanowski at Ecology Retreat Centre, Orangeville, Ontario (2002)
- 10-Day Vipassana Teacher Training Residential Retreat successfully completed with Venerable Bhante Henepola Gunaratana, Ph.D., former professor at Georgetown and American Universities, Buddhist scholar, and highest-ranking Theravadan monk in North America at Bhavana Society Forest Monastery Meditation Center, High View, WV (2001)
- UMass Center for Mindfulness, UMass Medical School, Teacher Development Intensive in MBSR led by Melissa Blacker and Florence Meleo-Meyer with Saki Santorelli and Jon Kabat-Zinn at UMass CFM, Worcester, MA (2000)
- UMass Center for Mindfulness, UMass Medical School, Professional Internship Program in MBSR with Ferris Buck Urbanowski and Florence Meleo-Meyer (attended two concurrent internship programs) at UMass CFM, Worcester, MA (1998)
- Omega, UMass CFM MBSR Mind-Body Medicine 5-Day Professional Training Retreat with Jon Kabat-Zinn and Saki Santorelli at Mt. Madonna Retreat Center, Watsonville, California (1998)
- Omega, Thich Nhat Hanh’s 7-Day “Opening the Door to Healing and Transformation” Residential Retreat at Pritam Singh’s Key West Golf Resort, Key West, FL (1997)