Search our website


Dharmalaya Institute’s multi-disciplinary, international team brings together a diverse array of skills, experiences, and sensitivities that, together, guide the course of our activities.

Full-time Staff Members & Artisans

Pushpa Lata Thakur: From the local hamlet of Dhanaari, Pushpa is our main gardener, and is also a skilled artisan and mason.

Rajinder Thakur: Also from Dhanaari, Rajinder is a skilled artisan specializing in masonry and currently learning carpentry.
Hariyali Devi: From nearby Bari village, Hariyali manages our kitchen and prepares delicious and healthy plant-based meals.
Ashwani Kumar: From the town of Bir, Ahswani is a skilled artisan specializing in earthen work.
Bhagpati Devi: From Dhanaari, Bhagpati helps prepare delicious meals that keep everyone happy and healthy.
Raj Kumar: From Bari, Raju specializes in earthen building, particularly renders and finishing.
Surveer (‘Gilla’): From Bir, Gilla is an all-rounder member of our building team.
Jogeshwar: From Dhanaari, Jogeshwar does a little bit of everything, always with mindfulness and kindness.
Guddi Devi: From nearby Ghornala village, Guddi is an ever-cheerful member of our kitchen and hospitality team.

Key Members of the Board & Faculty

Mark Moore (Cofounder): Founding Director of the Earthville Network; social entrepreneur, educator, producer, designer, and writer (USA)
Savita Paul (Member, Board of Directors): Retired Principal and Cofounder of Billing View Public School (Bir, HP)
Sidney Rosario, Ph.D. (Member, Board of Directors): Professor of Computer Science and agriculturalist (Mangalore)
Vinay Mamgain (Member, Board of Directors): Plant-based chef and sustainability enthusiast (Delhi and Uttarkhand)
Savneet Kaur (visiting faculty and internship partner): Principal architect at Imarat Architects (Karnal, Chandigarh)
Sourabh Phadke (visiting faculty and Leadership Council member): Educator and licensed earthen architect (Pune)

Key Collaborators & Advisors

Didi Contractor (Professor Emeritus, retired): Renowned architect specialising in traditional eco-friendly earthen construction methods of the Himalayas (Sidhbari, HP)
Naresh Kumar Sharma: Foreman and earthen building advisor (Rakkar, HP)
Dara Ackerman: Cofounder of DEVI; artist and educator (California, USA)
Leigh Taylor: Facilitator of women’s workshops (South Africa & Portugal)
Justin Van Uytrecht: I.T. specialist and environmentalist (South Africa & Portugal)


Sandeep Kakkar, F.C.A.: Chartered Accountant for Dharmalaya Society (Palampur, HP, India)

› The Dharmalaya Community