About Us

Cyrus Khambatta, PhD, Co-Founder

Cyrus Khambatta, PhD is the New York Times bestselling co-author of Mastering Diabetes, and has helped more than 10,000 people reverse the underlying cause of insulin resistance. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University in 2003, as well as a PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry from the University of California at Berkeley in 2012. He is an expert in both type 1 and 2 diabetes, has been living with type 1 diabetes since 2002, and has reduced his insulin use by more than 40% using a food-first approach.

Robby Barbaro, MPH,

Robby Barbaro, MPH is an internationally recognized diabetes expert and New York Times bestselling co-author of Mastering Diabetes who has helped countless people reverse insulin resistance and take back full control of their metabolic health. Robby earned a Master’s in Public Health from American Public University in 2019 and completed his undergraduate education at the University of Florida in 2011. He has been living with type 1 diabetes since 2000, has a current A1c of 5.4%, and a time-in-range above 90% while maintaining an active lifestyle.

Amy Leahy, BA,
Head Weight Loss Coach

Amy Leahy is a degree certified Nutritionist with a Bachelor of Health Sciences (BHSc) in Nutritional and Dietetic Medicine. It was through studying the overwhelming evidence about how a plant-based lifestyle can truly change a person’s health that moved Amy from a vegetarian to a fully plant-based lifestyle. Her passion and drive are to educate & empower others with the knowledge to make the best health choices for themselves. Amy is a passionate keynote speaker and educator on plant-based nutrition in her home country of Australia.

Michelle King Davis, BA,
Weight Loss Coach

Michelle began a plant-based journey over 20 years ago in response to health challenges. She became an avid studier of evidence-based nutrition and still considers herself a lifelong learner. In the early 2000’s she co-authored the book, Never Be Fat Again. She spent over a decade coaching hundreds, including people living with prediabetes and type 2 diabetes, in  transitioning to a whole-food, plant-based lifestyle having dedicated her life to helping others thrive, she is excited to be part of the Mastering Weight Loss coaching team.

Marco Ranzi, MS, Weight Loss Coach

Marco, holds a Master’s Degree in Nutrition with an emphasis in Human Performance from Logan University to go along with a certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition from Cornell University. He is also certified as a National Academy of Sports Medicine Personal Trainer, he is a Sleep Expert, and he is a Permaculture Design Course graduate. Marco strongly believes in a holistic approach to health and utilizing food as medicine. He has the unique experience of being raised plant-based and has been following this lifestyle for over 20 years. In 2017 Marco hiked the entire 2,190 miles of the Appalachian Trail powered completely by plants. He now lives in Costa Rica with his wife Maria where they tend to their gardens and fruit forest with regenerative practices. They enjoy the local beaches and waterfalls in their free time.

Jessica Stidham, NBC-HWC, INHC,
Weight Loss Coach

Jessica is certified through the National Board for Health & Wellness Coaches and she completed her health coach training at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. She was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 1996 when she was 3 years old. She was also diagnosed with celiac disease at a young age. Jessica began her plant-based journey in 2016, and has since reduced her A1c to 5.4%, has lost 50 pounds, and has reduced her insulin needs by more than 50% while eating significantly more carbohydrate energy. She loves empowering others to achieve their weight loss goals permanently. 

Katharine Baker, PhD,
Weight Loss Coach

Katharine is a certified coach by Duke Health & Well-Being, and is pursuing further certification by the National Board for Health & Wellness Coaching. She is a member of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, and has trained in their Food as Medicine program. She earned a PhD in Religion, Psychology & Culture at Vanderbilt University, learning the impact of beliefs, habits, emotions, and environment on behavior. Previously, she worked at the Cal Turner Program for Moral Leadership in the Professions at Vanderbilt University. She is an enthusiastic convert to a low-fat, plant-based, whole-food lifestyle after losing weight permanently, improving her energy levels, and increasing her fitness. She focuses on self-empowerment with education, behavior change, and mindfulness practices.

Alondra‌ ‌Matute‌,
Customer Success Manager

Alondra’s unwavering passion lies in advocating for women’s health issues, diabetes management, and weight loss. Having personally lived with PCOS and insulin resistance, she intimately understands the challenges individuals face when transitioning to a new lifestyle. As the Customer Success Manager for all Mastering Programs, Alondra is wholeheartedly committed to optimizing the client experience from the initial engagement to the ultimate fulfillment of their goals. With her empathetic nature and deep-rooted dedication, Alondra provides invaluable support and guidance to individuals, ensuring their journey is met with utmost care and success.

Jose Tejero,
Marketing Manager

Jose is a dedicated plant-based certified health coach holding a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science. With an unwavering mission to empower individuals in conquering diabetes and achieving permanent weight loss through natural methods, Jose is a staunch advocate for the healing power of plant-based nutrition, exercise, and mindset modifications. Through his expertise, he shares invaluable guidance on adopting healthy lifestyle habits, preparing delectable plant-based meals, and seamlessly incorporating exercise into daily routines. Fluent in both English and Spanish, Jose possesses the ability to effectively communicate and connect with diverse audiences, amplifying his impact in spreading the message of holistic well-being.

Jose Roman,
Content Contributor

Hailing from Venezuela and now residing in Peru, Jose brings a unique perspective to his role at all Mastering Programs. With a background in Civil Engineering, he has honed a meticulous attention to detail and a tenacious problem-solving mindset. Leveraging his expertise, Jose plays a vital role in content creation and editing. Beyond his contributions to the team, he possesses a proficiency in 3D Modeling and dedicates his spare time to studying programming. Driven by a passion for continuous growth and learning, Jose’s multifaceted skills and dedication enrich the work he undertakes.

Chelsea Klingenberg,
Social Media Content Developer

Since embracing a fully plant-based lifestyle in 2014, Chelsea has fostered a deep passion for holistic health and nutrition. Driven by her unwavering belief in the transformative power of a plant-based, whole-food approach, she enthusiastically shares this message through her role as a social media content manager for all Mastering Programs. Beyond her professional endeavors, Chelsea finds joy in the exhilarating art of roller skating and unleashes her creativity as a skilled chef, concocting delicious plant-based meals. With boundless energy and a commitment to inspiring others, Chelsea is dedicated to spreading the profound benefits of a plant-based lifestyle far and wide.

Jillian Stenzel,
Coaching Enrollment Specialist

Jillian embarked on her plant-based journey at the age of 16, marking the beginning of her exploration into the power of conscious eating. As she traversed 30 countries throughout her 20s, her culinary choices evolved in tandem with the diverse cultures she encountered. In 2017, grappling with severe gastrointestinal issues and symptoms of autoimmunity, Jillian embraced a low-fat, high fruit diet. Witnessing remarkable transformations in her own health within a remarkably short span, she became resolute in her mission to share the profound impact of a low-fat, plant-based, whole-food diet on overall well-being. With an unwavering dedication to helping individuals find their ideal coaching program, Jillian is committed to empowering clients in their transformative journeys.

Jacob Yezbak,
Coaching Enrollment Specialist

Jacob Yezbak, an Enrollment Specialist at Mastering Programs, is a fervent advocate for the transformative power of a plant-based lifestyle. Six years ago, Jacob experienced firsthand the remarkable impact it had on his own health, propelling him into the realm of natural healing. Driven by his unwavering passion for assisting others and fostering holistic well-being, Jacob has transitioned into his role as a coaching enrollment specialist. With an innate understanding of the life-changing journey ahead, he wholeheartedly supports individuals as they embark on their transformative paths towards a healthier, more fulfilling lifestyle.

Melissa Shafer, Coaching Enrollment Specialist

Melissa, an Enrollment Specialist for all Mastering Programs, discovered her passion for eliminating chronic pain and promoting holistic health after being diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis in 2013. This life-altering event, coupled with her family members’ experiences with diabetes, fueled her journey towards a plant-based lifestyle and ignited an unwavering commitment to help others. With boundless enthusiasm, Melissa shares her expertise in plant-based living, while pursuing her hobbies in photography, tending to over 100 house plants, staying active, and cherishing moments with her beloved kitty, Bugs. Drawing from her own transformative experiences, Melissa brings a wealth of knowledge and genuine dedication to empowering individuals on their own paths to wellness.

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