Board of Directors

About

Deepak Chopra, MD

CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD, FOUNDER & DIRECTOR

Deepak Chopra MD, FACP, founder of The Chopra Foundation, a non-profit entity for research on well-being and humanitarianism, and Chopra Global, a modern-day health company at the intersection of science and spirituality, is a world-renowned pioneer in integrative medicine and personal transformation.  Chopra is a Clinical Professor of Family Medicine and Public Health at the University of California, San Diego. He is the author of over 89 books translated into over forty-three languages, including numerous New York Times bestsellers. His 90th book and national bestseller, Metahuman: Unleashing Your Infinite Potential (Harmony Books), unlocks the secrets to moving beyond our present limitations to access a field of infinite possibilities. TIME magazine has described Dr. Chopra as “one of the top 100 heroes and icons of the century.”

www.deepakchopra.com

www.choprafoundation.org

www.chopra.com

www.jiyo.com

Poonacha Machaiah

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR / CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

Poonacha Machaiah is a global leader among a new breed of social entrepreneurs, having chosen to apply his corporate expertise from 30 years as a business executive in multiple Fortune 100 companies and entrepreneurial initiatives to addressing societal and wellbeing challenges.
Poonacha is the CEO of The Chopra Foundation, a 501 (c) (3) organization dedicated to improving health, social and planetary wellbeing. Co-founder and CEO of Seva.Love the metaverse platform for good along with world-renowned mind-body medicine pioneer and New York Times best-selling author Deepak Chopra, MD.
As a serial entrepreneur he has launched initiatives such as the Warrior Monk™️ brand targeted at creating a positive societal shift through the compassionate transformation of humankind. Wellbeing Tech, an innovative startup studio that focuses on developing technology solutions to democratize access to health and wellness. Co-founded CIRCA, a leading a leading anxiety management platform along with Srini Pillay, MD — Harvard-Trained psychiatrist and brain researcher.
He has also held senior management positions at Nortel, Iridium, Motorola and Sasken. He holds an MBA from the College of William and Mary, and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and Engineering.
Twitter: @thepoonacha
Instagram: @poonacha
Huda Al Ghoson

DIRECTOR

Huda Al Ghoson is a former Saudi corporate executive, Al-Ghoson was the Executive Director of Human Resources for Saudi Aramco, the national oil and gas company of Saudi Arabia. She has been named among the world’s most powerful Arab businesswomen by Forbes Middle East and one of the world’s most influential Arab women by Arabian Business.

Al-Ghoson earned her bachelor’s degree in English literature from King Saud University, Riyadh in 1980. She received a Master of Business Administration from American University in Washington, D.C.in 1986. Al-Ghoson joined Saudi Aramco in 1981. In 2006, she was promoted to director of Saudi Aramco’s human resources policy and planning department, and in 2009, she was promoted to general manager of Training and Development organization, becoming the first woman to handle such a position in the company’s then-76-year history. She contributed to the advancement of women at Saudi Aramco by creating two initiatives: ‘Women in Business’, for women early in their careers, and ‘Women in Leadership’, for more senior female employees.

In 2012 she became the first woman to assume an executive position at Saudi Aramco when she was promoted to the position of Executive Director of Human Resources. She remained as the head of HR in the company until her retirement on December 28, 2017.
In addition to her positions at Saudi Aramco, Al-Ghoson has served as a member of several boards including those of Vela International Marine Limited, the Yanbu Aramco Sinopec Refinery Company (YASREF), Johns Hopkins Aramco Healthcare, Bupa Arabia, and Credit Suisse Saudi Arabia. She has also been a member of the leadership advisor board of Saudi Electricity Company and the Arabian Society of Human Resources. Al-Ghoson was ranked by Forbes Middle East fourth in its list of most powerful Arab women in the field of executive management. She also received the 2014 Arab Woman Award from the Arabian Businessmagazine naming her one of the most influential figures in the energy domain.

She received recognition and achievement awards for her educational outreach efforts and women development programs from numerous bodies, including the Bilateral U.S.-Arab Chamber of Commerce (2016), the Middle East Excellence Awards Institute (2016), Arabian Business Achievements Awards (2015), and the Arab Women Award, KSA (2014).

François Ferré, Ph.D.

DIRECTOR

Dr. François Ferré is the co-CEO of ALMA Life Sciences LLC, an investment and consulting firm. He is also the co-Chairman and co-Founder of AltheaDx, a privately-held company (a spinoff of Althea Technologies) focusing on the development of pharmacogenomic tests. Dr. Ferre was the CEO of AltheaDx from 2010 to June 2013.  Prior to AltheaDx, Dr. Ferré co-founded Althea Technologies and served as co-CEO from 1998 until 2008. He was a Director of Althea Technologies until April 2013 and has recently been appointed a Director of Ajinomoto-Althea after the acquisition of the company by Ajinomoto.  He also currently serves on the board of a number of private companies such as Biomatrica and Portable Genomics. He is co-Chairman of the Advisory Board of MD Revolution.

Dr. Ferre is also a Trustee of the Keck Graduate Institute, Claremont CA. Dr. Ferré was the winner of the 2005 E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year award in the Life Sciences category. Dr. Ferré is a leader in gene quantification and biomarker development in the fields of AIDS and Cancer research.

In collaboration with Dr. Jonas Salk, he developed the first FDA validated quantitative PCR test for the assessment of HIV pro-viral DNA load in AIDS patients. Dr. Ferre has published several authoritative reviews on these topics, including the co-edition of a bestseller book on PCR with Nobel Prize winner, Dr. Cary Mullis. He received his Ph.D. in molecular oncology from the Pasteur Institute, France, and did his post-doctoral training at the University of California, San Diego.

www.altheadx.com

Ajay K. Gupta

DIRECTOR

With his conviction about the importance of independence, transparency, and objective advice, Ajay K. Gupta actively co-collaborates with high-net-worth individuals in developing and implementing cohesive strategies that address their financial, investment, insurance, tax, charitable, and estate planning needs.

Ajay K. Gupta serves as the Chief of Investment Strategy and board of director at Creative Planning, Inc., an SEC Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) with clients in all 50 states and abroad.   Prior to joining Creative, Gupta was founding principal of Gupta Wealth Management (GWM), a San Diego-based RIA after having lead San Diego wealth management team for UBS.

Ajay earned a Bachelor of Commerce with a major in finance from Concordia University.  He attained the Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA®) designation after successfully completing the Advanced Training Program at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business.  Gupta also completed the Private Equity and Venture Capital (PEVC) program at Harvard Business School and the Certified Private Wealth Advisor Education Program at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business.

Ajay lives in San Diego, California, with his wife, son, and twin daughters.

Mr. David Lubotta

DIRECTOR

Mr. David Lubotta brings 25 years of entrepreneurial, private equity, venture capital and corporate finance experience to The Chopra Foundation. He has been active in several financings and M&A transactions as a principal, advisor and/or a board member in the cannabis industry, including such companies as Green Therapeutics, Nutritional High, Green Rush, Emerald Family Farms, Bona Vida and Xanthic Biopharma Inc., which was recently purchased by Green Growth Brands. Mr. Lubotta has also been a founder, active investor and advisor in other industries, including hotels/resorts, media and entertainment, real estate, wellness, United States legalized sports gambling as well as the alcohol/beverage industry. He is active in philanthropy and holds an MBA from Northwestern Kellogg School of Management. Mr. Lubotta has already been hard at work for the Foundation helping us secure the recent collaboration with Cybin.
Stephen Shaya, MD

DIRECTOR

Stephen Shaya, M.D. life’s journey has been one of service instilled by his Iraqi Christian parents and his grandmother.   He graduated from Birmingham Brother Rice High School Summa Cum Laude was awarded a Merit Scholarship to attend Wayne State University. During his time at WSU, Dr. Shaya won many leadership awards including the Outstanding Student Leader in 1991 and became a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Research Grant Awardee.  He was selected to serve on the Wayne State University Board of Governors from 1991 to 1993 and then attended Wayne State University Medical School and graduated in 1996.  Dr. Shaya subsequently trained in Family Practice at North Oakland Medical Center and then did a fellowship at Wayne State University for Occupational and Environmental Health. Since 2004, Dr. Shaya has been the Executive Servant Leader at J & B Medical, a global healthcare solutions company. J & B is a privately held global health care consortium based in Wixom, Michigan.

 Founded in 1996, Stephen worked closely with his father and family to start eighteen different business enterprises and now have customers all over the globe including 48 states in the US.  This innovative company has brought many new ideas and solutions forward to the delivery care and continues to strive to improve patient access and quality. His role oversees all strategy, innovation, and growth of this family of companies.  By leading the planning and development of their new enterprises, many describe him as an “intrapreneur”, someone who behaves as an entrepreneur within a large organization.  Dr. Shaya’s efforts have received many recognitions including the 2015 Global Distinguished Health Care Award from the Center of Economic and Leadership Development, and a United States Congressional Commendation. In addition, Dr. Shaya received the Global Medical Innovation and Leadership Award August 19, 2016, presented at the United Nations along with a commendation from the New York State Senate. In 2017, Dr. Shaya was named the American Diabetes “Father of the Year” on 4/28/2018.  

Dr. Shaya joined an esteemed line up of global leaders at the Cura Foundation’s Fifth International Vatican Conference in May of 2021, at which time he was presented with a Vatican Pontifical Hero Award given to individuals who through their generosity, compassion, wisdom and leadership have inspired hope by working tirelessly to improve human health and increase the quality of life around the world. He currently sits on many boards including as the Chairman of the American Diabetes Association in Michigan, Citizens Rx, Endeavor Detroit, Henry Ford Hospital (West Bloomfield), and Velatura.  Most recently, he was named to the International Council at Harvard’s Kennedy School Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs which is a group of 

Paul Johnson

TREASURER & SECRETARY, DIRECTOR

Paul Johnson is a former managing partner of Johnson O’Connor Feron and Carucci, LLP in the greater Boston area. He has extensive experience in business advisory services, high net worth strategic planning, and estate and trust services. Paul recently completed service for the maximum terms as a member of the Board of Trustees of Hartwick College where he was chair of the Financial Affairs Committee.

Paul is a member of the Board of Directors of a number of not-for-profit organizations including Bethany Homes, a national leader in senior housing with services where he serves as Treasurer and chair of the Finance Committee, the Boston Cardiac Foundation, the Strazzula Foundation in Boston and other organizations, including the Chopra Foundation.

Paul has committed significant efforts over the past 21 years as sole Trustee of a private foundation that provides education grants to inner-city youth annually, supports summer enrichment program opportunities for students, and provides funding for youth development and education programs that have deep, lasting impact. His foundation also provides annual grants to organizations working to build and revitalize neighborhoods into healthy, happy places to raise families. His efforts providing much needed financial resources directly benefit the lives of parents and their children in the most underserved neighborhoods of the greater Boston area.

www.jocllp.com

Corporate counsel

Kevin Levy

CORPORATE COUNSEL

Kevin is a shareholder in GrayRobinson’s Miami office and leads the firm’s Technology Transactions Team. For more than 25 years, Kevin has advised innovative companies at all stages of growth on business, corporate and technology matters, including U.S. and foreign-based global corporations, technology enterprises and entrepreneurial ventures.

Kevin is known for his personalized approach to solving problems and providing practical, real-world advice on mergers and acquisitions, complex IT development and outsourcing, and data privacy and security matters. He also provides strategic counseling for clients on corporate structuring and restructuring, intellectual property and technology licensing, and delivery of online services.

Kevin was named “Lawyer of the Year” for Technology Law by Best Lawyers in America® for 2016, 2019, and 2021, and in 2017 was presented with the “Salute to Miami’s Leaders” Award by the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce. He has also received recognition from numerous other industry publications, including Super Lawyers, Florida TrendSouth Florida Business Journal and Business Leader Media. Kevin is frequently interviewed by regional and national media on current business and technology law issues and trends.

In addition to practicing law, Kevin has devoted substantial time, energy and mentorship to developing the Florida technology community, including serving as the chair of the Computer and Technology Law Committee of The Florida Bar, chair of the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce’s Technology and Bioscience Committee, and as co-chair of the Beacon Council’s Information and Technology Committee, as well as a mentor for local and national accelerator and incubator programs and numerous start-up ventures.

Michael D. Schley

CORPORATE COUNSEL FOR THE FOUNDATION

Mike Schley is outside general counsel to The Chopra Foundation.  He has almost four decades of experience in financial, corporate, nonprofit, and business law. He advises charities, private foundations, and other exempt organizations on corporate governance and tax matters, and has helped write California nonprofit legislation. Mike has authored federal banking regulations, has been general counsel to a NYSE-listed financial institution, and has practiced with firms in New York, Washington, DC, and Santa Barbara. He has written or contributed to a report to Congress on the S&L crisis and law journal articles on banking, business, and tax-exempt topics, and speaks on these subjects. He is a graduate of Hastings College of the Law (1980) and Westmont College (1977).

Mike is the president and co-founder of the Mountain View School Foundation.  He is a past director & officer of the Nonprofit Support Center, Transition House (serving homeless families), the Foundation for Santa Barbara City College, and other charities.  He

received the 2001 Richard Abbe Humanitarian Award from the Santa Barbara County Bar Association.  He is a GLG Scholar (Gerson Lehrman Group Law Council) consulting on nonprofit and corporate law issues.

Mike lives with his wife and their two young children in California.

www.slgl-law.com