In gratitude –
FORMER TEACHERS AT STONE CREEK
Dojin Sarah Emerson and Korin Charlie Pokorny served as co-head priests at Stone Creek Zen Center from 2014 to 2022. They currently are in the process of relocating with their family to Brooklyn, NY.
Dojin Sarah Emerson (she/her) began formal practice in Soto Zen in 1996, and she lived and trained at Tassajara Zen Mountain Center and other sites of the San Francisco Zen Center from 1998-2007. She received Dharma Transmission from Abbott Konjin Gaelyn Godwin of the Houston Zen Center in 2015. She has a Masters Degree in Counseling Psychology from California Institute of Integral Studies, and has worked in the fields of mental health and pastoral care with children and adults. As a priest in the U.S., Sarah is committed to centering anti-racist practice. She experiences Bodhisattva Zen practice as uniquely supportive to inquiring into, challenging, and transforming systems of oppression, particularly racial inequities and the harm they cause within convert Buddhist sanghas and in U.S. society generally. Sarah has also worked for many years in grief support—clinically, pastorally, and in community—specializing in ceremonies for child loss.
Korin Charlie Pokorny was ordained as a Zen priest by Reb Anderson in 1999. He practiced as a resident at Tassajara and Green Gulch Farm for 12 years, including serving as Tenzo (Head Cook) and director at Tassajara. He holds a master’s degree from Stanford University in Religious Studies, and he has brought a breadth of perspective on the direction that Soto Zen is taking in the world today through his recent position as director of the Soto Zen Buddhist Association. He also teaches at the Institute of Buddhist Studies.
Joko Hazelwood (1931-2014)
Joko Haselwood began practicing Zen with Shunryu Suzuki Roshi in 1963 but remained with him for only one and a half years. Later, he resumed practice with Jakusho Kwong Roshi at Sonoma Mountain Zen Center, and remained with him for fifteen years and was ordained as a Zen priest. He left Sonoma Mountain in 2000 and began studying at Stone Creek Zen Center with Jisho Warner Roshi. He received dharma transmission (permission to teach) from her and became Associate teacher at Stone Creek. He led the Empty Bowl Sangha for many years. He emphasized the practice of “just sitting” (Shikantaza) and the need to reconnect our body and mind in the practice of being present to life as it arises moment by moment.