For and by the UW, The Whole U launched in January 2014 to foster community, promote holistic wellness, and share the great perks available to UW faculty and staff.

This year, we celebrate The Whole U’s first 10 years of impact across the University of Washington, from world-record fitness events to world-class faculty seminars and webinars, plus a myriad of workshops, workouts, classes and challenges that have engaged, enlightened and energized the UW community.

View the full recap of 2023 or check out the videos and infographic below for a broader look at how The Whole U brings wellness to the workplace at the University of Washington.


Meet The Whole U Team

Kimberly Mishra HR Chief of Staff

kmishra@uw.edu · 206-685-3845 · Read Posts

You know how the last bullet of most job descriptions reads something like, “other duties as assigned?” Well it is that bullet that has shaped my career path and has allowed me to turn my love of shiny, new things into a workplace strength. I love jumping in the deep end, figuring out how to swim, and leading through change. I also love telling stories, helping others connect, and advocating for the end-user experience.

In addition to working on The Whole U, I serve as the Chief of Staff for Human Resources. With over a decade at UW, I have started to bleed purple. I love this place and its people. Connect with me if you have ideas on how to better promote The Whole U, new ideas for events, or to offer me advice on juggling the demands of parenting (I have a nine-year-old adorable monster) with career and the remnants of a social life. When I am not working or chasing the adorable monster, I am at yoga, throwing ridiculously elaborate dinner parties, or chasing the next shiny new thing.

Lauren Updyke, MS ACSM HFI Executive Director for Employee Experience and UWHR Chief Wellness Officer

updykl@uw.edu · 206-221-3450 · Read Posts

Hi everyone, I’m Lauren, the Executive Director for Employee Experience and UWHR Chief Wellness Officer. My role is to lead our Employee Experience team encompassing The Whole U, UW Combined Fund Drive and WorkLife programs.

I have spent over 20 years of my career in Health and Wellness. I came to the USA from Canada on a track and field scholarship to University of Louisiana. I have my Masters in Exercise Physiology, am a Certified Personal trainer through the American College of Sports Medicine, and have coached over 10,000 individuals online from all over the world. I worked with the wellness program at Duke University and Hospital for 13 years as fitness and health education manager.

This is my tenth year at UW and I love being a Husky. When I’m not at work, I am either training for a marathon, doing lots of strength training, traveling with my family, or racing from one kid activity to the next.

Anna Tegelberg Assistant Director

ategel@uw.edu · Read Posts

Hello! My name is Anna and I am The Whole U’s Assistant Director. I’m a UW alumna and Seattle native, born and raised in South Seattle where I still live today. I’m motivated by the positive impact workplace wellness programs have on mental and physical health. Please reach out to me with ideas and special requests for increasing workplace well-being and engagement. The Whole U is for UW, by UW.

When I’m not at The Whole U, I’m most likely relaxing with friends and family. I love skiing in the winter, planning trips and going on adventures. I will never pass up a plate of tacos or bowl of Husky Deli ice-cream. (If you’ve never heard of it, it’s worth the trip to West Seattle!) I look forward to meeting you all!

Sebastian Ky Virtual Event Specialist

sky0428@uw.edu · Read Posts

Beyond work, Sebastian is a dedicated photographer, always ready to capture life’s moments. He thrives on video creation, seamlessly blending creativity and storytelling. He also is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu enthusiast, embracing the challenges it offers for both body and mind. In the culinary realm, Sebastian loves experimenting with flavors and concocting fresh recipes (AKA: combining whatever’s left in the fridge).

Hannah Murphy In-Person Events Specialist

murphyh4@uw.edu · Read Posts

When not at The Whole U Hannah finds her joy through hiking the local trails in the Seattle Area and escaping the chaos of the city life. She will never say no to coffee no matter the time of day and is a huge foodie who loves trying hidden gems around the city. Hannah is a proud aunt to three nieces and nephews, and always keeps family at the heart of her life. Football season is her favorite time of year! Despite being from Ohio, Hannah is a die-hard Pittsburgh Steelers fan.

Ed Kromer Editorial and Marketing Manager

edkromer@uw.edu · Read Posts

Though not an “official” UW alum, Ed feels like he must be close to earning some kind of degree-by-association after two decades writing about the people, programs and insights of the Foster School of Business.

Born in Ohio and raised in Kentucky, he is an ardent producer—and consumer—of stories. Endowed more with curiosity than command, he’s also a chronic dabbler, with interests that run from hiking, running, soccer and travel to cooking, gardening, prose, podcasts, performing arts, music, movies and television. A lifelong learner, he feels privileged to discover and deliver useful information, convey thought-provoking ideas and introduce fascinating people of purpose across this great university community.

Melanie Kuo Marketing and Graphic Design Intern

mkuo1001@uw.edu · Read Posts

Melanie Kuo is the marketing and graphic design intern for The Whole U and is a senior at UW majoring in Informatics with a focus on Human-Computer Interaction. She loves creating and sharing stories through graphic and UX (user experience) design, written content and other media.

Jordan Sims Marketing Intern


While pursuing a master’s degree in nutritional sciences at the UW, Jordan Sims is also in the midst of a year-long training and certification program in Functional Medicine Coaching, where he is learning skills such as motivational interviewing and positive psychology in order to foster empathetic rapport. With a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Jordan’s professional background spans multiple disciplines, from state-champion high school basketball coach to data consultant. His passions for nutrition, coaching, functional medicine and neuroscience are motivated by his own health journey following multiple sustained concussions. He is committed to helping people fulfill their goals and achieve their ideal sense of wellness.

Now you know who we are, but what The Whole U is depends on you—your interests, your passions, your availability, and your willingness to reach out to us so we can better meet the needs of our unique community. Please send us your ideas. We don’t know exactly what the future holds, but we know The Whole U will be for UW, by UW.

Is The Whole U required? Does it cost money?

Participation is voluntary and is funded by UW Human Resources.

How are events scheduled? Do you take into account different shifts, schedules, and locations?

Part of being responsive to people’s interests and availabilities means that the times and locations vary. Large events will typically be at lunch on weekdays in a central location to engage the maximum number of people. For smaller events, the location and timing depends on the target participants. For faculty and staff leading their own activities, it remains up to the activity leader. The toolkit contains advice on scheduling to maximize participation.

Is release time available for participation in Whole U activities?

Typically, activities are scheduled to take place during lunch breaks or weekends. When your work schedule conflicts with a Whole U event, it is up to you to speak with your supervisor about the possibility of attending.

We encourage you to stay connected to The Whole U website for information on upcoming events, resources and discounts, but please do so in a way that is appropriate for your unit. If there is any ambiguity with your schedule or the policies that govern your workspace, please talk with your supervisor.

How does UW Medicine’s Social Networking Policy and Guidelines affect participation of faculty and staff who are involved in patient care?

UW Medicine employees should limit their use of The Whole U program’s social media elements in hospital or clinic space to rest or meal breaks, unless social media use has been previously approved by a supervisor.

I see that you include information on volunteerism. Does this mean that I can get release time to volunteer at a non-profit organization?

Participation in Whole U events or service opportunities is on a volunteer basis that exists outside of your normal work responsibilities and is not covered by release time.

What is The Whole U’s Comment Policy?

The Whole U is a moderated website, and reserves the right to not post submitted comments. Please submit your comments at any time, and they will be approved and posted as soon as they can be reviewed-the next business day if not sooner. Generally, we will not post comments that:

  • Are not related to the topic, or are clearly spam.
  • Do not demonstrate mutual respect for the University, University employees and other individuals, including use of abusive or prejudicial language, personal attacks, or unsupported claims.
  • Contain commercial links in support of a business, service, or product.

We will not edit comments. If a comment contains any of the above, or is otherwise considered inappropriate, it will not be approved for posting.

Thank you for visiting our website. We look forward to your comments!