Our Team

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Jason Littlefield, M.Ed

Jason Littlefield began working in Texas public schools in 2000. In 2014 He joined the Social and Emotional Learning team in Austin ISD. Before becoming a SEL Specialist, he was a middle/high school Social Studies teacher and assistant principal. Outside of public education, Jason has worked with K-12 students and educators in multiple capacities throughout the United States, Taiwan, China, and Benin, Africa. He believes mindfulness and mindset coaching not only transform individuals, but can collectively transform our schools, businesses and communities to be in greater harmony within themselves and each other. In 2017, he co-founded EmpowerED Pathways with the intention of starting a movement to leverage the K-12 experience and cultivate the emotional intelligence and well-being of educators, youth and community members. As Executive Director, he draws upon his StrengthsFinder strengths (relator, futuristic, strategic, and restorative and self-assurance) to intentionally lead from the heart and build a hopeful tomorrow.


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Sarah Bentley, MPH

Sarah is a public health educator and behavioral science researcher with a passion for mindfulness, stress management, and resilience. As a former bilingual educator, Sarah’s passion for this work is rooted in evidence based research. In addition to being a co-founder and board member, Sarah brings expertise in program design and evaluation to empowerED Pathways’ work. Sarah has more than a decade of experience in community relations, public health, teaching, and facilitating group processes and workshops within educational, clinical, and business sectors. She has moderated panel discussions, facilitated staff training, led focus groups, held circles, and presented at retreats and conferences for public and private/corporate organizations, specifically on the topics of mind/body practices (yoga & qigong), mindfulness, and meditation. In addition Sarah is a Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation practitioner.


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Hilary Simon, M.Ed, MAT

Hilary has supported students, educators, and families as a social & emotional learning specialist, autism specialist and behavior consultant for over since 1999 within the public education system and the private sector. She has a long-standing yoga and mindfulness practice and is a certified Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction for Teens (MBSR-T) instructor. Hilary applies her belief in the value of each individual's core-self to everything she does and thrives on developing authentic, collaborative partnerships. She uses her strengths as a communicator, maximizer, arranger, and empath, to build connections, facilitate growth, and empower individuals and teams to realize their true potential and accomplish change through tangible outcomes.


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Natalie Grigson

Natalie  is an author, illustrator, improviser, and trained Authentic Relating Facilitator. She has several years’ professional experience working with kids and teenagers, from homeschooling to workshops on body image and consent. With Empowered Pathways, she offers a variety of workshops for middle and high school students, focusing on embodiment, emotional awareness, empathy, and authentic communication.

Workshops are frequently tailored to meet specific group needs – for example, Natalie has facilitated workshops for middle school girls focused on consent and boundary-setting – or can be more general. All workshops are facilitated through a mixture of Authentic Relating games, mindfulness techniques, and improv-inspired exercises and intertwine all 3 Pathways of Practice.