Howie Shareff founded You Call This Yoga in 2007 as a business to share yoga that was adaptable for tired, worn baby boomers. As a 52-year-old practicing dentist and recreational athlete, he was managing his own severe arthritis for many years with gentle yoga. Howie also utilized yoga as part of his preparation and recovery from surgery. Through these experiences, he found that the benefits of yoga to enhance healing and comfort could be accessible to anybody willing to breathe, focus and mindfully move.
Howie’s philosophy about the business was that it served the community to improve social, emotional and physical health. He sought this to be a social entrepreneurial endeavor, where yoga that is accessible for all can be delivered by skilled, passionate, paid and professionally supported teachers. In 2010, Howie succeeded, with help from the NC Center for Nonprofits, in having You Call This Yoga recognized by the IRS as a 501c3 non-profit organization.
Since then, Howie has grown in the role as Executive Director through advice from the Small Business Center at Wake Tech, the Board of Directors of You Call This Yoga, and many coaches in our region. Howie also produces two educational shows: the You Call This Yoga Show (30 minute class) that airs on Raleigh Channel 10 and the You Call This Yoga YouTube channel, and the You Call This Yoga Internet TV Show (60-minute talk show about accessible yoga).
Currently, Howie stays young by engaging prospective yoga teachers, host partners, team members for YCTY, business partners and students. He welcomes your contact to learn more about you.
Bill Harmon has been a financial services professional for thirty years in the triangle. His business life encompasses a wealth management firm, life insurance agency and college planning software company. As a life-long health advocate, Bill is a vegetarian, an active competitive martial artist, and yogi.
Barbara Vosk, Ph.D., RYT500, is a licensed psychologist, yoga teacher, and student of yoga. In her psychotherapy practice in Raleigh, she helps adults with anxiety, depression, relationship issues, and recovery from trauma. Experiencing the ways yoga provided healing and health in her own life motivated her to become a yoga teacher; she completed her 500-hour training at Blue Lotus Yoga and Movement Arts studio in Raleigh in 2016.
She has blended her two passions of psychology and yoga to co-create a Yoga for Anxiety Relief program, which is offered at several studios in the Raleigh area. Barbara teaches restorative yoga at Bliss Body Yoga studio in Raleigh. She also provides training to yoga teachers and mental health professionals on yoga for trauma recovery.
Sarah joined the You Call This Yoga board over 5 years ago. She’s been practicing yoga since her teenage years and became a teacher in 2014. Sarah offers alignment-based yoga and gentle yoga to students all over the Triangle area and values helping others discover and hone their yoga practice, as it’s a powerful tool for healing the mind and body and for connecting to our authentic self.
Professionally, Sarah has spent the past 10 years in consulting, strategy, marketing, event planning, customer experience, change management and employee engagement. She’s worked with small-and medium-sized businesses and Fortune 100 companies ranging in industries from the food and agriculture, technology, health and wellness, financial and professional services, healthcare and consumer goods. She has helped start several entrepreneurial ventures and is passionate about helping mission-driven organizations achieve sustainability while giving back to the community.
Nancy is a passionate yoga teacher. She shares her love of yoga through her yoga school, the Tittibha School of Yoga, plus offers seminars for teachers in prenatal yoga and the ancient yoga texts. Nancy lives in Clayton and teaches gentle yoga classes in the area. Nancy has participated in most of YCTY’s YogaFest NC events, trained Howie Shareff as a private student to acquire his RYT, and helps community organizations through acts of service.
Lori McDaniel discovered her love for yoga quite by accident. She had been to a few yoga classes over the years, but her competitive nature drew her to running, cycling and other high-intensity sports. She always thought of yoga as something to do on her day off. Then in 2012, she had the opportunity to travel to Africa for a yoga retreat. Through this experience, Lori realized yoga’s potential to be life-changing. She returned from her travels and a month later enrolled in a nine-month yoga emersion teacher training program.
Today Lori teaches yoga in Raleigh and maintains her personal practice. While she is still passionate about mountain biking, snow skiing and spending time outdoors, through yoga she has found a balance in her life that didn’t previously exist.
As a yoga teacher since 2013, Lori enjoys introducing her students to the parallels that exist between yoga and life. She joined the board of You Call This Yoga in 2017 and currently serves as chair of the Marketing Committee. She is a career marketing professional and owner of Group3 Communications, a Raleigh-based marketing and web development company.
Dianne has always found yoga to be a wonderful practice for reconnecting with herself, others, the earth and the universe. She is excited to share her practice with others for their growth and her own. Her yoga journey started with Bikram Yoga in 2004 to assist in healing her overworked mind and body. Since then she has practiced Kripalu, Ashtanga, Vinyasa and LifePower Yoga. Her path led her to completion of LifeTime Fitness’ 200hour YTT in 2015 and her current participation in Blue Lotus’ 300-hour YTT.
Dianne loves teaching with You Call This Yoga. She also teaches chair yoga once a month at Spring Arbor of Raleigh and substitutes at Quintessential Wellness (Clayton) teaching prenatal, mixed level, restorative and “warm” yoga. In addition to moving energy through bodies with yoga, Dianne is certified as a Reiki Master and in Huna I & II (Hawaiian Energy Work).
“Your life is a sacred journey. It is about change, growth, discovery, movement, transformation, continuously expanding your vision of what is possible, stretching your soul, learning to see clearly and deeply, listening to your intuition, taking courageous challenges at every step along the way. You are on the path…exactly where you are meant to be right now…And from here, you can only go forward, shaping your life story into a magnificent tale of triumph, of healing, of courage, of beauty, of wisdom, of power, of dignity, and of love.” – Caroline Adams.
Marc Gracieux is a Product Manager at TransPerfect Life Science Solutions who is responsible for the strategy, roadmap, and feature definition for one of their products. He also works within teams to build strong collegiate relationships, think outside the box, cultivate a collaborative culture, create operational effectiveness that promotes excellence and pivots a team towards its organizational mission.
Marc is a leader of the Advocacy and Communications team for Innovate Raleigh – another local non-profit right in the heart of downtown Raleigh. He provides a steady source of direction – leading team meetings, collaborating with other team members on how to contribute to organization-wide advocacy and communication efforts, and spearheading their own initiatives to innovate how we can be advocates in our region. Their mission at Innovate Raleigh is to showcase our entrepreneurial community and elevate the conversations within.
Marc is an Ashtangi also. He started by making a commitment to go to yoga class on a regular, weekly basis – at least once a week at the start of 2016. An “on-the-fence yogi” for a while who gradually was pulled towards Ashtanga yoga in 2017 and is a committed Ashtangi practicing 3 to 4 times a week on a regular basis.
Mary Lou Mazzara