Staff • Board • Contractors & Volunteers • Senior Fellows
Small team, big hearts, hard work. Our staff works to care for this organization, its spaces and programs, and its future every day. We love what we do, and bring our fullest selves to work for you and for our shared future.
Thomas lives onsite and works with the team to ensure all participants and visitors find a welcoming home at the Institute. He supports the land and facilities, helping to create an environment that facilitates the life-affirming work happening here. As a photographer, filmmaker, contemplative juggler, and teacher of movement awareness, Thomas seeks to inspire a sense of wonder and delight in our relations with Earth and Other.
Sommer started working with us in October 2018. In addition to her work with the Whidbey Institute, Sommer loves spending time with family. She’s a homemaker with a six-year old stepson, Reece, and a partner, Jason. They have two dogs and a cat, and enjoy baking, cooking, board games, and movies.
Lynne oversees our housekeeping team’s scheduling and ordering and helps tend our spaces. Horses and horse rescue have a special place in her heart. She enjoys spending time with her human and animal family, being physically active, and drinking gigantic smoothies.
Database Administration & Community Event Hosting
When she’s not at the Whidbey Institute keeping our office in order, Madisun runs her own brand of community merrymaking as a freelance events coordinator and operates a non-profit program under the Whidbey Island Arts Council. In her free time, she can be found on a historic pumpkin farm, living as a steward of the Reserve with her husband, a rescued street-to-farm dog, and four hilarious ducks.
Jessica is a member of our housekeeping team. In her spare time, she enjoys sewing, painting, and baking. Jessica also loves gardening, spending time with family, working out, hiking, and enjoying her dog and birds.
Photo © Heather Ramirez
Administration & Logistics
Meg loves being on a team of hard working people dedicated to creating spaces where everyone feels welcome. Her past work areas ranged from renewable energy to postpartum support to owning her own specialty food business. Meg’s son and daughter both soaked up the rain in the forest kindergarten at the Whidbey Island Waldorf School and they love to lead her on the Institute’s trails.
Nicolas has 15+ years of experience with landscaping and gardening, the majority of which were spent in Tignes, France caring for a large public green space. He joined the Whidbey Institute team in Summer 2019 and is excited to bring his skill and passion to the team.
Holly is a mission oriented, passionate, and experienced business strategist. Her academic and professional expertise ranges from industrial engineering, manufacturing, and marketing to economic development, business development, and grassroots network development.
Communications & People Operations
Marnie has a B.A. in English from Suffolk University and a background in teaching, journalism, and nonprofit communications. She’s a mother of three daughters and her family includes three dogs, two cats, three rabbits, a mule, and two cows. Her interests include gardening, boxing, home renovations, vegan cooking, and photography. She is also a certified Language of Spaces coach, a writer, and an animal rights advocate.
With a background in business administration and nonprofit management, and specialization in financial modeling and management, Heather’s focus is integral organizational development: growing an organization’s systems, structures, practices, mindsets, and culture in alignment with a deep and worthy purpose. A magna cum laude finance graduate, Heather is also graduate of Pacific Integral’s Generating Transformative Change in Human Systems program, and has held leadership roles with Sustainable Connections in Bellingham (as founding staff), Sustainable Seattle (as Interim Director), Excellence Northwest (as Interim Director), and Blue Marble Biomaterials (as Director of Finance and Accounting).
Beno lives according to a simple philosophy: “if you take care of what’s in front of you, close by, then by extension you’re helping to take care of the world.” Beno has been involved for decades as a volunteer and for several years as a staff member, serving as a handyman/go-to-guy with extensive skills, a creative outlook, and a contagious attitude of honesty, service, and dedication.
Jules LeDrew grew up near Boulder, Colorado and loves nature, plants, and people. She is an instructor at Half Moon Yoga in Langley as well as a clinical herbalist, and holds a premed degree in Herbal Science from Bastyr University. She brings her passion for botanical medicine, Ayurveda, and the potential for thriving human/plant relationships to her work as our Westgarden Steward.
Marta’s background is in the performing arts. She is finishing up a three year Movement-based Expressive Arts training with the Tamalpa Institute and holds a masters in psychology. Her work history is an eclectic mix which includes Sign Language interpreting, co-founding Calyx Community Arts School, coordinating hotline volunteers for the Abused Deaf Women’s Advocacy Services, landscaping, and short-term stints in China, Dominican Republic, and Nepal.
As a member of our housekeeping team, Rose helps keep our spaces clean, fresh and inviting! She is active in the arts, including singing and visual arts. She also sews, both at home and in her role with the Whidbey Institute. Most of Rose’s childhood was spent on Whidbey Island, and she still lives nearby with her cat Jasper, one of her most beloved friends.