Anthony V. Zampella is an educator, activist, leadership coach, writer, researcher, and learning designer, focusing on Leadership, Listening, and Learning. He is the founder of Bhavana Learning Group, rebranded in 2018 from Zampella Group (founded in 2000). He sees this change as necessary “for seeding learning cultures for developing conscious leaders to cope with the human side of change.”

Tony directs the development of the firm’s intellectual property and specializes in integrating Eastern wisdom practices and Buddhist psychology with Western learning methods into a Contemplative Learning Model. Tony employs an ontological learning lens to deepen connections between listening and learning to cultivate wisdom.


Since 1999, Tony has worked as an academic and leadership specialist, designing custom leadership development programs for coaches, educators, and learning and development (L&D) professionals. Tony facilitates fundamental shifts in unlearning to expand leadership capacity at the individual and organizational levels.

  • Tony writes a regular blog, Unlearning Curve, for learning and development professionals.
  • He contributed to the coaching textbook, Complex Situations in Coaching: A critical Case-Based Approach, published by Routledge (2019), to understand the view of “assessment” in coaching.
  • Tony wrote a chapter for an upcoming anthology on Gay Male coaching published in 2022, titled: Coming Out and Being in the World; How insights from the coming out process support a coaching mindset.
  • Explore White Papers in our Learning Center, which detail the research and ideas on our thinking.

Speaking AND Conferences

2018: ACTO Conference: Listening as a Field of Being. Tony worked with experienced coach trainers to expand perceptions and experience of Deep Listening. (ACTO = Association of Coach Training Organization.)

2019: Gay Coaches Alliance: Workshop on Deep Listening. Tony worked with experienced coaches to cultivate Deep Listening.

2019: ACTO Conference: Unlearning: The challenge of cultivating deeper understanding, presence, and openness. Tony worked with experienced coach trainers to develop unlearning worldviews and systemic bias to deepen equity consciousness.

Tony has served on the Board of ACTO (Association of Coach Training Organization) to support bringing anti-racism learning and practices to coach training.

Education and Studies

Tony’s experience presents an eclectic fusion of Western business models, generative learning methods, language-action practices, and Eastern wisdom traditions.


  • MS in Journalism from Columbia University
  • MS in Business with Organizational Leadership, Mercy College
  • BA in Sociology from the University of California at San Diego (UCSD).

Philosophical INQUIRIES

  • Philosophical approaches include ontological inquiries and phenomenological examination, with meta-theories that cultivate systems thinking.
  • As an Integral theorist, interests include the work of Martin Heidegger, Ken Wilber, Peter Senge, integrating Buddhist psychology and practices.


  • Tony has designed a Contemplative Learning model with 12 Practices to bring contemplative learning to listening and leadership.
  • He has created and led “Practice Fields” in personal mastery to bring mindfulness practice to everyday life.
  • His research and work include Tibetan and Zen studies and Buddhist psychology.


Tony is certified in these areas of adult learning and human development:



As a learning specialist, Tony has instructed undergrad and graduate students; researched and delivered learning methods at various universities, including Rutgers University Business School, Newark (“Executive Leadership”), and Fordham University’s MBA Program (“Leadership, Language, and Trust,”). He redesigned the “Master of Science in Organizational Leadership” (MSOL) at Mercy College, which involved developing faculty teams to deliver programs on campus and at the corporate headquarters of Con Edison in Manhattan.

Tony currently serves as faculty at Nalanda Institute of Contemplative Science, where he founded the “Practice Field” in its Contemplative Psychotherapy Program.


From 1985 to 1993, Tony founded, published, and operated two news magazines serving the LGBT community in San Diego (the San Diego Scene, and Bravo! Newsmagazine). He authored columns and essays on diversity, leadership, and human rights; published in Update Newspaper, San Diego; The San Diego Reader, Ten Percent Magazine, and The San Diego Tribune (1994-97).


From 1984 to 1997, Tony served as an LGBT and human rights activist: as Chair of San Diego’s gay pride organization; board member of the County’s AIDS organizations; advisor of the Board of Trustees to San Diego City College; and, on advisory boards to Mayors Maureen O’Connor and Susan Golding.

Tony also served on the Board of Governors at the Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest LGBT civil rights organization. From 1993 to 1997, he served as Commissioner on the San Diego Human Relations Commission.

Contact Tony at

How to Work with

Tony V. Zampella

Coaching: Supporting limited clients who’ve developed a coaching or generative mindset to cultivate conscious leadership and wisdom.

Mentoring: Offering guidance and practice in deep listening and cultivating wisdom practices for supporting new levels of clarity.

Consulting: Offering research, original IP, and practices to design learning programs and develop learning cultures for conscious leadership.

Learning Dialogues: Facilitating intentional team conversations for new learning paradigms with Buddhist psychology to cultivate interdependent awareness.

Listening Certificate: Our deep listening program for experienced listeners (and coaches) involves an immersive learning experience.

The following booklist has informed Tony Zampella’s work.

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Tony Zampella discusses “Unlearning” at Nalanda Institute for Contemplative Science.

Transformation finds us open to a state of newness, previously unavailable to us.

It is not a better version of that state. Rather, it is a courageous choice to abandon what’s known for the possibility of the unknown.

We do not change our view; we become the possibility of a new view.