Dr. John Spencer Ellis
President & CEO
John is the CEO of the National Exercise & Sports Trainers Association (NESTA), Personal Trainer Hall of Fame (PFHF), Fitness Hall of Fame (FHOF), Spencer Institute for Life Coaching (SI), International Triathlon Coaching Association (ITCA), and the Mixed Martial Arts Conditioning Association (MMACA). His programs are used by Cirque du Soleil, Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, U.S. Secret Service, FBI and Coast Guard, and he’s consulted the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championships).
John has shared the stage with world renowned luminaries.
New Rules of Success, The Compass, The Code, How Badly Do You Want It, Peak Vitality, Power of Champions, The Wellness Code, The Ultimate Life Coach Business Book, Collaboration Economy, Rapid Body Makeover and Health and Wellness Today.
John has collaborated on books with other leading experts such as Dr. Oz, Dr. Deepak Chopra, Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. Wayne Dyer, Dr. John Gray, Eckhart Tolle, Dr. Andrew Weil, Dr. Michael Beckwith, Kevin Harrington, Yanik Silver and Mariel Hemingway.
John is the CEO of the Get America Fit Foundation (GAFF) (501c3).
He competed in over 100 sports competitions including the Ironman triathlon. He also finished 5th at the U.S. National Run/Bike Championships and won the Montebello Cycling Classic and Roadrunner Inline Skating Competition.
John has earned a 2nd degree black belt in Kung-fu, black belt in Ninjutsu, brown belt in Tae Kwon Do, blue belt in Krav Maga, and blue belt in Kempo Karate and blue belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. He’s also trained in Muay Thai for many years. John is a certified instructor of self-defense, fitness kickboxing and fitness boxing. He’s competed in the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu World Championships
John holds two bachelor’s degrees (business & health science), an MBA with an emphasis in marketing, and a doctorate in education. He also completed doctoral level studies in naturopathic health education. He holds fifteen certifications. His medical training includes a license in radiological technology, a medical assisting certification, and training in McKenzie rehabilitation.
John is the publisher of Personal Trainer Magazine.
Mark Teahan brings 10 years of experience to the Spencer Institute and currently serves as its Director. He began his journey into this evolving field after finishing curriculum at The University of Utah in Salt Lake City in the Department of Exercise and Sport Science and immediately launched a successful career in the fitness industry upon relocating back to his roots in the Southern California area.
Mark has been fulfilling the role of wellness coach in the mid-Atlantic region as well as in California. His client list is impressive, including Coca –Cola Enterprises, Baltimore Aircoil Company, Roadway Freight, Conway Freight, xPedx Paper and The Council of Insurance Agents and Brokers in Washington, DC. Mark was fortunate to gain access into the Wellness industry during its infancy and has contributed to the process of refining the corporate wellness genre overall. Mark has applied his skills and expertise to help many workers who came to value their own health through highly refined coaching techniques that inspire change while delivering results.
Mark holds multiple certifications in the industry, and is an instructor for NESTA and its Personal Fitness Trainer designation (PFT). To date, Mark has certified over 500 Personal Fitness Trainers and has therefore had a direct influence in the fitness industry as he travels from coast to coast and all points in between. He believes in the value of life quality by keeping people moving and healthy, regardless of circumstance or situation.
Director of Research and Development, Success Design International
Co-Founder of Hemispheric Integration, Leader Instructor for the Spencer Institute
As a neuro-psycho emotional researcher, Al began the development of HI in 1996 at the Institute for the Advanced Studies of Health World Health Course, studying how our language indicates our thinking which then influences physical and emotional healing. His project thesis focused on the structure of visualizing abilities and skills – this is where he discovered that instead of one mind’s eye – we actually have two!
This revolutionary awareness is documented in Al’s book, The Other Mind’s Eye: The Gateway to the Hidden Treasures of Your Mind. He explains the basic cognitive functions of the hemispheres of the brain as they relate to our ability to be proactive. Al continues to develop tools for accessing the information and integrating the perceptions in each hemisphere in order to resolve internal conflicts and achieve goals. After years of researching the structure of grief, Al has designed a blueprint for a ground-breaking step back to the natural process of grieving, which he details in his second book, Moving Through Grief with Grace and Dignity, the Way Nature Intended.
Al’s love for bringing more enjoyment and success into a person’s life has carried into SDI’s advanced format of training. His passion is guiding someone in discovering their true essence of being, to know that no matter what the circumstances, peace, confidence and congruency will prevail. Prior to entering the field of intellectual research and personal growth, Al was a golf professional and coach. Al and Marilyn were an integral part of the educational team that led Moorpark High School to win numerous CA State Academic Decathlon Championships and then on to winning the National Championship for five years. They coached the students in creating states of focus, confidence and determination, and prepared for them for Speech and Interview competitions.
Founder and Co-Owner of Success Design International, Leader Instructor for the Spencer Institute
Education – Experience
Marilyn is a teacher at heart – this is her gift and her passion.
Her educational experience and certifications are:
- AA degree in Physical Education
- Certification in Early Childhood Education
- Director of a pre-school specializing in dance, music and the arts, as well as academic basics.
- Teaching credential with the Royal of Dance, London, England with an emphasis in anatomy, education and performance.
- Established the Ballet Studio by the Sea in Malibu, CA in 1978
- Formed The Malibu Ballet Society – a community non-profit organization
- Certified Practitioner – 1986, Master Practitioner – 1988 and Trainer -1990 in the field of neuro-linguistics and communication skills.
- BA in Psychology from Antioch University
- Founded Success Design International
- Subject Expert at Wexford University – MA and PsyD in Sport Psychology
1996 was a major life turning point when she and Al Sargent met at the Institute for the Advanced Studies of Health World Training. With neuro-linguistics as their communication foundation, Al’s discovery of the Other Mind’s Eye, and their extensive research in the structure of how the brain processes information, together they have developed the field of Cognitive-Emotional Re-Alignment with Hemispheric Integration. She and Al have traveled extensively in the US and internationally teaching workshops, seminars and presenting at conferences.
With her clear, precise teaching style and gentle compassion, Marilyn’s mission is to support others in being the best they can be and to make a positive difference in the world. Her specialties include:
- Relieving anxiety disorders, phobic reactions, and PTSD.
- Conflict prevention and resolution and stress management.
- Assisting adults and children with learning difficulties such as ADD/ADHD, how to build strategies and skills to overcome social and emotional. challenges.
- Business clients request her expertise in leadership and management tools, negotiation skills, improving presentations and productive meetings.
As an expert in educational development, Marilyn maintains a full time consulting and coaching practice for individuals, couples, organizations, and corporate clients, both in person or via SKYPE.
Kristen Willeumier, PhD, is a neuroscientist with knowledge on how the brain is affected by health, nutrition and the impact of concussions. Dr. Willeumier served as the Director of Research for the Amen Clinics from 2009-2016 to help advance the research mission of exploring how brain SPECT imaging can transform clinical practice. She has authored or co-authored 44 scientific manuscripts in peer reviewed journals. Areas of published research include traumatic brain injury, posttraumatic stress disorder, autism, biomarkers of suicide, obesity, gender differences in brain function, clinical outcomes, and brain rehabilitation. Together with Dr. Amen and colleagues, she led a clinical research trial investigating the long-term effects of repetitive subconcussive impacts in NFL football players. Subsequent work focused on therapeutic approaches to rehabilitate brain function in athletes. Dr.Willeumier is on the Scientific Advisory Board of Tate Technology, LLCTM a sports safety technology think-tank licensing firm that has developed innovative technology from helmets to protective gear, which is applicable to athletes, military and police.
Dr. Willeumier conducted her graduate research in the laboratory of Neurophysiology under the direction of Felix Schweitzer at the University of California, Los Angeles and the laboratory of Neurogenetics under the direction of Stefan Pulst at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center using live cell imaging to investigate mechanisms of synaptic signaling in Parkinson’s disease. She received MS degrees in physiological science and neurobiology and a PhD degree in neurobiology from the University of California, Los Angeles. She was a post-doctoral fellow in the Department of Neurology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center where she continued her work in the field of neurodegenerative disease. She was the recipient of the prestigious NIH fellowship from the National Institute of Mental Health to study the molecular mechanisms underlying Parkinson’s disease and has presented her work at national and international scientific meetings including the Society for Neuroscience, Gordon Conference and the World Brain Mapping Conference.