Michael Karlin is Assistant Professor of Psychology at Life University in the Positive Human Development and Social Change Department and the Associate Director of the Life University Center for Compassion, Integrity and Secular Ethics. Karlin received his Ph.D. in Religious Studies and a Graduate Certificate in Jewish Studies from Emory University in 2014. His dissertation, “‘To Create a Dwelling Place for God’: Life Coaching and the Chabad-Lubavitch Hasidic Movement in Contemporary America,” is an ethnographic study of two Jewish life coaching programs that blend psychology, religion and contemplative practice in order to provide resources with which individuals can construct moral selves and heal psychological wounds. Karlin is also a Fellow of the Tam Institute of Jewish Studies and the Mind and Life Institute.
Prior to graduate school Karlin was the founder and President of the Mythic Imagination Institute, a non-profit institution dedicated to the interdisciplinary study of myth and ritual and how it functions in daily life. Additionally, he served as the Chairman of the Executive Board of the Alliance for a New Humanity, an international non-profit organization founded by two Nobel Peace Prize winners and Deepak Chopra that attempted to address pressing international issues by bridging the spheres of politics, economics, and religion.
Karlin is also an active real estate investor and was co-founder of Security First Network Bank, the world’s first Internet bank, and S1 Corporation, Inc. (NASDAQ: SONE), the world’s leading provider of financial portal solutions. He was president of Security First Network Bank at its inception, and was responsible for setting up the Internet operations, defining the original product offering, and receiving all regulatory approvals. Prior to SFNB, Karlin co-founded VST Financial Services, an SBA lending subsidiary of Cardinal Bancshares, Inc. of Lexington, Kentucky.