It should be noted that all Executive Council members do volunteer work for the Institute, carrying out their professional activities on a parallel basis.
Dario Salas Sommer was born in Santiago, Chile, on March 4, 1935, and is the grandson of the distinguished Chilean educator Darío Salas Díaz. He holds a Master’s Degree in Philosophy and is also an author and filmmaker. He has been named Honorary Scientific Consul for Latin America by the Russian Academy of Arts and Sciences, and has received the title of Knight of Sciences and Arts by one of the principal Russian scientific organizations, the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences.
For more than four decades Dr. Salas Sommer has been committed to the progress of humanity and the internal development of the human being. He is renowned internationally as an author and philosopher.
In 1970, he founded the Institute for Hermetic Philosophy headquartered in Santiago, Chile. The main objective of this non-profit organization is the moral and spiritual perfectioning of the human being, in the highest sense of the word. Dr. Salas Sommer is the director and spiritual guide of the institute which has branches in Chile, Spain, United States, Argentina, Venezuela, Columbia and Russia.
He is also founder and director of the Latin American Bolivarian Foundation which promotes cultural and human development in Latin America aimed at achieving a common identity based on moral and spiritual principles of the first order.
He has written several books under the pseudonym of John Baines on Operative Philosophy™. To date, his books have been published in Spanish, Arabic, Bulgarian, Chinese, English, German, Italian, Korean, Latvian, Portuguese, and Russian. The collection is comprised of the following titles: The Secret Science, Stellar Man, HypsoConciousness, The Science of Love, Development of the Inner World (not yet published in English), Does Woman Exist?, Morals for the 21st Century, What is a Person’s Worth? (not yet published in English), and Cosmic Currency (due out in English in 2012). The last four titles bear the author’s real name.
Dr. Salas Sommer lives in Santiago, Chile and currently spends his time giving conferences in various countries and directing the pedagogic activities of the Institute for Hermetic Philosophy in its branches worldwide. His time is also dedicated to independent scientific research in the area of consciousness and natural health.
As president, Gail is responsible for operations and administration of the New York branch and has been affiliated with the Institute since 1985.
She oversees the publication of Dr. Salas Sommer's books, translation of materials into English, and is a coordinator and facilitator of courses in the Institute's curriculum. Gail supports and participates in the work of the Institute because she deeply believes that it is important to contribute to society and to work on oneself.
As IHP’s Vice President, Alexander works closely with the President and Controller to assist in IHP’s operations and management. His feeling that something was missing in his life, and his search for a more profound way of understanding himself and his experiences in life brought him to IHP in 1985, and he has been an active member ever since. Alexander has taken great pleasure in applying IHP’s useful and practical principles to his own life and sharing them with others. His professional background includes sales, marketing, and work in the administrative side of the construction industry. Alexander received his Juris Doctor degree in 2009. He works at a small law firm in Las Vegas, Nevada, and is an avid martial arts enthusiast and instructor.
As the President of the IHP Women, Carol works with the VP of Women and President to organize and foster the feminine body of IHP, overseeing the daily upkeep of the school as well as the women's studies. She is also a Seminar leader and Monitor for the woman's work. Carol has been a student of Hermetic Philosophy since 1995, helping her to enjoy, learn and grow from her daily life as a woman, wife, sister, daughter, friend and professionally in online advertising sales. Carol's work on herself and at IHP helps her to see the challenges in her daily life as opportunities that make her life richer. Life is never dull as a Hermeticist. Carol is very active in IHP because she truly enjoys helping others and feels it's important to "give back". She lives with her husband in Darien, CT.
James has been affiliated with the Institute for Hermetic Philosophy in New York since 1995. As Controller, he keeps an eye on things and tries to ensure that the principals of the philosophy are observed in the conduct of the various activities offered to members. Over the years, he's participated in all kinds of roles in the Institute: working, managing, leading, mentoring and coaching. James believes people have a better chance of achieving lasting happiness and success if they take a more objective and profound approach to understanding themselves and life in general. Professionally, James heads a financial and marketing advisory firm that helps small and mid-sized companies finance their projects and build their businesses. James received a BA in Geology from Williams College. He lives with his wife in Darien, CT.
David Richeson has been a board member, course monitor and student at The Institute for Hermetic Philosophy for over 15 years. He has taught courses, given seminars and spoken to large groups on various topics in personal development such as: spiritual evolution, relationships, communication, motivation, overcoming fears, time-management, money mastery and how all of these issues may be improved through increased self-awareness. Professionally, he has worked in the technology and online marketing & public relations fields. He is currently Senior Vice President at Porter Novelli, managing global PR and social media for Gillette.He completed his undergraduate study in Philosophy at Brown University, and is the author of several stage plays and screenplays as well as his book, 360 Degree Success (www.360degreesuccess.com).
Music Producer and Composer. Having studied at IHP since 1996, Junod is not just a seminar leader and organizer, but also a student of Hermetic Philosophy. Junod works in New York City as a music industry record producer and composer, and has done projects for Epic, Hollywood records, TVT, and Def Jam.
Maria Teresa del Peral
Executive Secretary, Consulate of Spain in New York. Maria Teresa has resided in New York for 23 years and has been affiliated to the Institute since 1977. She is in charge of Finances and devotes all her free time and energy to the Institute's work. What she has learned from being a part of it has changed her life dramatically for the better. Most of all, she is dedicated to giving to others a little part of what she has received throughout the years. Maria Teresa is also interested in furthering her practice and knowledge of her earlier studies in education and applied psychology. Before coming to New York, she lived for many years in Chile and Venezuela, but always as a member of the Institute. She is fluent in Spanish, English and French, and she enjoys both reading and speaking these languages, as well as studying the languages themselves: their roots, the origin of words, and how languages reflect individual cultures and the way people behave and think, and so on.