Director of Meadowsweet Farm Environmental Education Center and Program Coordinator for Portage Park District.
I have a B.S. in Elementary Education and Special Education from Kent State University. My most valuable education as a student of life has occurred through my experiences with two and four legged, high spirited, creatures. I have worked as an intervention specialist, special education teacher, and chemical dependency educator in a public school. I worked as a naturalist, animal rehabilitator, and animal trainer (my latest student was a young mule).
Currently I am working as program coordinator for Portage County Park District. I also serve as Executive Director, land steward, and founder of Meadowsweet Farm Environmental Education Center. Meadowsweet Farm is a small scale sustainable farm. The purpose of the farm is to improve people’s understanding, responsibility, love and respect for themselves and the natural world. We focus on the interdependence between humans, animals and nature. We have provided innovative programming for abused children, youth in therapeutic foster care, students in regular and special education classes, scouts and general public. Teacher workshops through Kent State have also been held at the farm.
Professional Experience in Peacebuilding / Community Building
Meadowsweet Farm was created as an environment for adults and children to explore, discover and learn about themselves through nature, play and adventure. Peace starts from within. The farm serves as an environment where peace and nature offer a respite to others needing a place to connect with themselves. I attended the Peacebuilding Intensive in 2010. My project was a year long program working with children and families participating in Head Start programs. I adapted the P.E.A.C.E. curriculum helped support the staff in creating a peaceful classroom. I also worked with students to develop personal skill to create a peaceful environment for themselves and others. I also co-taught a program connecting with nature-connecting with yourself at the intensive.