For the past 38 years, Jean Houston has co-directed the Foundation for Mind Research in Oregon with her husband Robert Masters. Their work has focused on the understanding of latent human abilities. She is also the founder of the Mystery School, a program now in its 19th year of cross-cultural mythic and spiritual studies. It is dedicated to teaching history, philosophy, the new physics, psychology, anthropology, myth, and the many dimensions of our human potential. She has recently initiated an international program to develop social artists.
Houston was the protégé of the late anthropologist Margaret Mead, who instructed her in the workings of organizations and power structures within cultures. Alongside the late mythologist Joseph Campbell, Houston frequently co-led seminars and workshops aimed at understanding the interrelationships between ancient myths and modern societies.
As advisor to UNICEF in human and cultural development, she has worked to implement extensive educational and health programs, primarily in Myanmar and Bangladesh. She has contributed to the social development of indigenous peoples by integrating their unique cultural gifts into their health and educational systems. In September 1999 she traveled to India with one of the distinguished groups chosen to work with the Dalai Lama in an informative and advisory capacity. Her work with the Dalai Lama continues.
Houston has served in an advisory capacity to President and Mrs. Clinton, helping Hillary Clinton write It Takes a Village to Raise a Child. As a high-school student, Houston worked closely with Eleanor Roosevelt on developing strategies to introduce international awareness and United Nations work to young people.