Stepping Up

I began teaching yoga part-time soon after college. It was definitely a life-line for me: it was something I loved to do and it helped give me inspiration after long hours at my day-job. When I was able to make yoga my day-job, I jumped at the chance. Twenty years and many downward dogs later, it is time to step it up even more.

Recently, I found out that my friend and colleague Kathy Donnelly was interested in retiring and wanted to sell her yoga studio, the Yoga Center of Columbia. I have known Kathy for 21 years, ever since we met at Yoga Teacher Training. Kathy has such a nurturing and compassionate energy that even before I knew her, I knew I wanted to be her friend. She has brought that nurturing, compassionate spirit to the Yoga Center of Columbia for two decades now and I have been a direct beneficiary of her amazing presence by teaching at YCC for the past eight years.

That is why I am over the moon to be able to announce that I will be stepping into her role as Director/Owner of YCC this summer! I plan to continue to foster everything that she has built. When Kathy and I talked about her semi-retirement, because she will still be teaching at YCC, we both agreed that the Yoga Center community is larger than either one of us. Every student, every teacher, and each staff person are all key to making the world a better place. That is what YCC does, it makes the world just a little brighter, a little more joyful each day with each person that passes through its doors. That is what the practice of yoga does too; when one person feels a little more grateful or a little more joyful, it makes the world a better place.

The Sufi poet Rumi once said β€œRespond to every call that excites your spirit,” and supporting students and teachers who want to practice yoga does that for me. I plan to maintain my current yoga teaching schedule, so you as a student will not even notice the transition. And, YCC will continue to offer the same great yoga, meditation, pilates, and qi gong that has always been there. 

If you have not yet been to YCC, I cordially invite you to drop by! And, in a few months you may look forward to some visual changes around the studio as well as the return of the retail store. I look forward to deepening my relationship with each one of you as we move ahead in the practice of yoga together. What excites your spirit? Each of these mind-body practices have so much potential to shift our collective awareness into a more loving place. It is a grassroots effort, from the ground up, one person at a time, and I look forward to growing with you.

24 thoughts on “Stepping Up

  1. Sandy K Cummings

    This is exciting news for Kathy…a wonderful spiritual, physical, and emotional support. You have made my world more joyful with the like-minded community you have created and fostered. No words can fully express how much I appreciate what you have offered me, my friends and family, and the Columbia community. All the best to you, and I certainly hope to see you around the studio. Keep up the jokes and smiles. Much love and light to you in your retirement! Sandy

    What a perfect continuation with you Kelly…I don’t know you well, but I have corresponded with you, and I am so certain that you will make a smooth and natural transition as leader of this joyful community. I look forward to seeing and hearing from you as you continue to grow and mold the yoga studio with your own unique creativity and knowledge. Congratulation to you for your exciting opportunity. Sandy

    • admin Post author

      I appreciate your words Sandy. Looking forward to more joy with you at YCC!

  2. Caroline Wilkins

    Wow! Congratulations to both you and Kathy!!! This sounds perfect and like a most natural transition. Much love!

  3. Lucy

    I can’t think of anyone better to step into the leadership role of the awesome Yoga Center of Columbia. I’ve worked with, and been friends with both Kathy and Kelly for over 20 years. This move will give Kathy some breathing space and Kelly some room to play. How wonderful! Love to you both during this transition.

    • admin Post author

      πŸ’—πŸ’—πŸ’— Thanks LuLo!

  4. Maria Hamburger

    What great news!!! Congratulations to the continued growth and evolution to of yourselves, Yoga Center of Columbia and the yoga community at large.
    Blessings oxox

  5. Teresa Williams

    Congrats!! You will do an amazing job!

  6. Margaret Mangum

    Congratulations Kathy, on your retirement! You are one of the reasons I loved YCC! 😍
    I was excited to read Kelly will be the new director/owner.
    YCC will continue be full of positive loving energy.

    • admin Post author

      Thank you Margaret for your support! Kathy will still be teaching at YCC so we will continue to be graced by her presence and wisdom.

  7. Olga R Kuperstein

    Congratulations Kelly! I am so happy for you! It is such an amazing and exciting transition in your life! Your dedication,
    spirit and love for what you do, all your talents found exactly the place to be expressed and nurtured.

    I am happy for Kathy because she knows that you will continue the path she created throughout the years. Her goodness that
    shines from inside and attracts so many people to this place will continue to shine in your efforts and dedication.

    • admin Post author

      It definitely feels like a good next step for me, and lucky us! Kathy will still continue to teach at YCC so she will still be with us.

  8. Beth Strausser

    This is so fantastic! Congratulations to you, Kelly on this next step in the evolution of your yoga teaching!

  9. Kim Flyr

    I couldn’t be happier for you, Kathy, and all of us to know YCC will continue to be in loving hands. Congratulations on this next step of your journey, Kelly!

  10. Susan Fago

    Kelly I’m so thrilled for you- this is wonderful news for all concerned! Wishing you all the best as you step into this role.

  11. Marcie Forster

    Kathy and Kelly, what a wonderful working relationship that brings Kelly to be the third owner of Yoga Center of Columbia. I still speak glowingly of my 300-hour teacher training and the people who made that experience life changing. Thank you for continuing the tradition as you add your special touches for the betterment of broader community. Congratulations!

    • admin Post author

      Thank you Marcie! YCC is a special place.

  12. Marla Martucci

    Wishing you a most joyful retirement Kathy!! And Kelly….. I am so tremendously thrilled for you!!! Wishing you both all the BEST!!!

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