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Dr. Kristen Brendel PhD, LCSW, E-RYT, C-IAYT is an internationally award winning researcher, a professor of social work, a licensed clinical social worker, speaker, coach, and a trainer with 20 years of experience in settings ranging from universities to public schools as well as hospitals, nonprofits, and for-profit organizations. She holds her Illinois Professional Educator’s license in the State of Illinois as well as certifications in yoga therapy from the International Association of Yoga Therapy (C-IAYT) and is a Yoga Alliance Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher (E-RYT).  Dr. Brendel is the founder and director of Per La Vita Wellness, LLC and has made a career out of integrating evidence-based practices to meet the needs of individuals, organizations, and corporate clients. Dr. Brendel has expertise in evidence-based practices and approaches all her clients with the understanding of their strengths and a holistic perspective, understanding the client and all the systems that impact them. Dr. Brendel’s blog is a reflection of what inspires her, current research, an amalgamation of mental health and mindfulness practices, and informal observations.

As a holistic health expert, Dr. Brendel facilitates national and international corporate and wellness retreats.  Brendel brings her clients unique perspectives on modifying individual and business behaviors resulting in greater life satisfaction and business profitability. Through her own practice of mindfulness techniques, Brendel has experienced significant benefits and has talents for integrating mindfulness with business results.

Before success in academia and with her company, Per La Vita Wellness LLC, Dr. Brendel provided social work and mental health services for students within an Illinois public school district, worked in private practice specializing in services for children and families, and was an adjunct professor of education. She is currently an assistant professor of social work at Aurora University. While at Aurora University, she authored and published articles on the effectiveness of mental health treatments including mindfulness-based interventions and presented her research at national and international conferences. With a passion for teaching and research and goals to publish her findings in respected journals, Dr. Brendel earned her PhD in Social Work from Loyola University Chicago.  She also has a Masters of Social Work degree and holds a B.A. in Psychology.

Dr. Brendel is passionate about offering services that are practical and relevant. The evidence for mindfulness as a serious leadership strategy is solid, and the science behind it is significant. Dr. Brendel will provide you with the business perspective and latest research on this growing trend and will share how using mindfulness in the workplace can increase staff productivity and business profitability.

Dr. Brendel is based in Geneva, IL where you might spot her hiking, practicing yoga, horseback riding, or dining at local restaurants. Some of Brendel’s greatest pleasures are spending time with her husband and daughter, going to concerts with friends, having Sunday dinners with her extended family, traveling, and reading.


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