Tsering Palmo Gellek
Tsering Palmo Gellek was appointed by her father Tarthang Rinpoche to build and direct the Sarnath International Nyingma Institute. She believes in the power of small, focused groups to do good, and enjoys when people are working towards their highest potential.
Tsering was born in Berkeley, California in 1973. Raised in a multicultural family and community, her early childhood was spent traveling between the East and the West and enjoying nature in Sonoma County. She completed her bachelor's degree in International Relations at Lewis and Clark College in 1995 and then in 1998 went on to pursue a Masters of Law at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.
Since 2001, Tsering has been engaged in Buddhist cultural preservation work throughout Asia. Her first major projects included the installation of large peace bells at the most significant Buddhist holy sites throughout India and Nepal. For the last fifteen hundred years, every one hundred years, the Swayambhu Stupa, has been renovated. In 2008, Tsering was asked by her father to direct the restoration of the Swayambhu Stupa of Nepal. This two-year major renovation effort was successfully completed and involved the participation of over 70 traditional artists, Nepal's Department of Archaeology, numerous Buddhist priests and their communities, UNESCO, and other consultants. This work was documented in a book published by Dharma Publishing entitled Light of the Valley and a documentary bearing the same name produced by the Guna Foundation. (To watch this award-winning documentary, please visit https://vimeo.com/ondemand/lightofthevalley)
Tsering began work on the Sarnath International Nyingma Institute in 2007 and completed its construction in 2013. Her primary focus now is to strengthen the roots of the Institute, develop programs with universities and other centers of learning around the world, and from harness the power of sharing between the East and the West.
“To live simply, yet heroically, neither discouraged by the magnitude of the world’s suffering, nor disheartened by the seeming aloneness of the work, is to rest joyfully in an open heart, ready to serve the needs of other spontaneously, naturally, effortlessly, and perfectly. The activity of caring is a crowning jewel of what it means to be human.”