Meet the Team
Photo of Erin making a mock serious face

Erin McLeod

Co-founder

(she/her)

Erin is a professional athlete, playing soccer for top teams around the world and closing in on two decades as a goalkeeper for the Canadian Women’s National Team. Currently playing professionally in the NWSL for the Orlando Pride, she was inducted into the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame in 2019.

A three-time Olympian, Erin competed in the 2008 Beijing Games and won a bronze medal in London in 2012. Just three years later, in her fourth FIFA World Cup appearance, Erin helped lead Canada to a historic quarter-final finish. In 2021 at her third Olympic Games, Erin won a gold medal for Canada in Tokyo, knocking off FIFA's number 1, 5, and 7 ranked teams en route to the podium.

Erin’s interest in mindfulness began in the lead-up to the 2012 London Olympics, when she began working with renowned sports psychiatrist Dr. Ceri Evans. While the mental game had always been a part of her training, this helped Erin achieve significant growth that has directly contributed to her success on the soccer pitch. In the years since, Erin has become a certified mental trainer and uses mindfulness in her training regimen and day-to-day life.

Outside of her professional career, Erin is a motivational speaker and outspoken advocate for human rights, women’s empowerment, and LGBTQ+ rights. An avid artist, musician, and tattoo designer, Erin is also an active Pro Ambassador for Athlete Ally and is the host for the podcast, Three Sides with Erin McLeod.

Photo of Rachel with her hand on her chin

Dr. Rachel Lindvall

Co-founder

(she/her)

Rachel is an experienced university professor and women’s soccer coach holding a Doctorate of Health Sciences and Exercise Leadership with a research focus in mindfulness. She also holds a Master’s degree in Exercise Science with an emphasis in sport psychology and a Bachelor’s in Physical Education with an emphasis in athletic training. In January 2019, Rachel was named a Presidential Scholar in recognition for her service to society and dedication to intellectual growth. She is also actively involved in corporate leadership development with an international multi-billion dollar company.

Rachel brings decades of experience as a certified mental coach and mental skills consultant for university sports teams since 2010 and an NATABOC-certified athletic trainer since 2000. She has also spent over two decades coaching collegiate women’s soccer at the NCAA and NAIA levels across the United States.

Rachel’s passion for empowering students, athletes, and people of all ages has been the catalyst for her doctoral research in mindfulness. She aims to make mindfulness an approachable, accessible tool that people can use to become the best version of themselves.

Outside the realm of education, coaching, and corporate leadership, Rachel enjoys music, traveling the world, and watching women’s soccer at the highest levels worldwide.

Portrait of Lauren with Pike Place Market in the background

Lauren Nielsen

Head of Design & Technology

(she/her)

Lauren is a product designer focusing on user experience, design systems, and visual design. She adds her expertise in web design and technology to the team and is passionate about using design practices to solve human issues. When she’s not designing layouts or writing code, Lauren can be found cooking great food or hitting the gym.

Portrait of Kelsey wearing an olive color sweater

Kelsey Nielsen

Head of Marketing

(she/her)

Kelsey is a marketer specializing in brand strategy, content creation, and project management. She brings years of experience in launching creative campaigns to The Mindful Project and enjoys making complex concepts accessible to every audience. When she’s not brainstorming new taglines or writing copy, Kelsey enjoys reading good books and experiencing life abroad.

The Mindful Project full team photo
Jamie wearing a Wild Feminist tshirt

Jamie Lindvall

Business Operations Manager

(he/him)

Jamie is a career women’s soccer coach and a certified athletic trainer. Over two decades of coaching collegiate soccer and running youth sports camps have given him a unique understanding of the needs of athletes at every age and level. Growing up in Latin America has given Jamie a global perspective and a vested interest in expanding The Mindful Project programs internationally. When he’s not wearing multiple managerial hats, Jamie enjoys reading, cooking, fixing up cars, and exploring new parts of the world.

Portrait of Cara

Cara Lightman

Illustrator

(she/her)

Cara is an artist with an emphasis in illustration. Her professional and educational experience have contributed to many of the animated illustrations in The Mindful Project’s programs. When not in her creative bubble, Cara is mom to two young boys and teaches secondary school Business Education.

Acknowledgments

This project has been a significant undertaking and we could not have completed it without the support of many people around us. We would like to specifically thank and recognize the efforts and contributions of Lisa Karlsson, Tanya Zickefoose, and Betty Dodson. You have all helped to make The Mindful Project a reality.