Wakoh Shannon Hickey began Zen practice in 1983, received Jukai in 1987 from Sojun Mel Weitsman and priest ordination in 2003 from Gengo Akiba Roshi, and served as shuso at Kojin-an Zendo in 2010. She is now a student of Shosan Victoria Austin, a senior Dharma teacher at SFZC, and an overseas teacher in Japanese Soto-shu.
She currently works as a hospice chaplain in the North Bay. She was one of the first professionally trained Buddhist chaplains in the United States and served as the first Buddhist chaplain at Duke University and as a Buddhist campus minister at Johns Hopkins University.
She holds two Masters degrees and a Ph.D. in religious studies and taught for a decade at two East Coast universities. Her specialties are Buddhism in East Asia and the West, American religious history, religion and medicine, and interfaith engagement. Her book, Mind Cure: How Meditation Became Medicine, was published in 2019 by Oxford University Press. It is a religious history of mind-body medicine.