Staff • Board • Employment Opportunities
Small team, big hearts, hard work. Our staff works to care for this organization, its spaces and programs, and its future every day. Many hold multiple roles in our self-organizing system. You can click the photos or links below to see all the ways they serve.
After many years as a Whidbey Institute program participant and volunteer, Cathy joined the staff to work on database and fundraising projects. Her past work in eco-outreach and regulatory compliance connected businesses, communities, and agencies to practical changes that make a difference. Cathy’s husband, daughter, son-in-law, and grand-dogs help ground her passions and hopes. She’s a board member at Sound Circle Center, a Waldorf adult education institute. Rowing on Seattle’s Duwamish River helps keep her happy. Engaging in ways to be a better human keeps her humble and inspired.
Madisun is the Operations Manager of the Whidbey Institute after working with the team in a variety of roles since 2016. In these years, Madisun has gained the unique knowledge and skillset to maintain the functionality, efficiency and continuity that impacts every faucet of the Whidbey Institute.
Prior to joining our team, Madisun has had a vast range of experiences including venue management, large-scale festival production, wedding and event planning, dressmaking and costume design, sustainable agriculture, and has held various administrative roles for non-profit organizations.
In the community, Madisun is a well known event organizer and merrymaker. She is involved with a collective of local artists who create larger than life scenescapes and props using repurposed and up-cycled materials, which are installed as imaginariums at events around the region. In her spare time, Madisun cannot be found because she disappears into the forest, down a beach, or into her own garden.
Lety’s professional interests range from science and marine biology to climate action and social service work. She is passionate about food security and affordable housing as it relates to homelessness, and explored both during a previous position with a community land trust on Orcas Island. She has extensive international living and travel experience, including as a translator for the Kuna Yala Indians in the San Blas islands during a colleague’s climate impact writing project. She is a proud mom who considers raising an amazing young woman to be her greatest accomplishment, and shares that her daughter is currently attending UW.
Timothy has had a long relationship with the Institute. For many years he worked on the land now called “Legacy Forest” building the trail system, the outdoor Theater at Storyhouse, and as the number one helper on the big remodel of Storyhouse itself. Over the years he has welcomed and worked closely with with groups as they arrived on the land including managing the Power Of Hope camps and as theater manager for the birth and first three seasons of the Island Shakespeare Festival among many other jobs and responsibilities.
Timothy is now the Whidbey Institute’s Land Steward as well as a songwriter and performer.
Nick first came to the Pacific Northwest 49 years ago as part of the US Coast Guard’s icebreaking service. He has made four trips to the Antarctic and two trips to the Arctic, and has also served as a lighthouse keeper on Lake Superior. Since leaving the service, Nick has worked in the hospitality business here in the Puget Sound region, opening and renovating hotels. He and his husband recently moved to Clinton. He is a father to a 34 year-old son and shares his home with a four-year-old Australian Cattle Dog named Oliva. Nick enjoys the sea, traveling, and gardening.
Benjamin works to support the care of the land and facilities at Whidbey Institute. His work weedwacking, cleaning outdoor spaces, caring for trails, and more helps ensure that visitors can feel at ease when on the land, and by extension encourages fruitful experiences in this place. His ever-growing breadth and depth of knowledge in the life sciences and land stewardship and his experience on small farms and gardens are early-career expressions of his commitment to invite more intentional, healthier relationships with our ecological home. Ben lives close to Whidbey Institute and, when he’s not gardening or exploring the forest, he spends time reading, cooking, and sharing meals with his close friends and housemates.
Bryan McGriff grew up in the Pacific Northwest. He and his family currently live in an intentional, multi-generational community in Port Townsend, WA. Before joining the Whidbey Institute, he worked in Waldorf education as an administrator and teacher. Developing healthy communities and collaborative forms of working together were tenets of his previous work, and Bryan is eager to support and learn from his colleagues and the Whidbey Institute’s wide network of transformational leaders.
As a trail runner, Bryan is looking forward to exploring the forests and campus and joining their conservation. Along with family game nights, He also enjoys playing Ultimate Frisbee and appreciates the inclusive values of the sport. He will usually have a disc on-hand for a quick throw!
Marta brings a lifetime of experience in the performing arts to her work at the Whidbey Institute. She is a facilitator of movement-based expressive arts and holds a masters in psychology. She sees the creative process as a bridge to helping us understand life experiences and build more intimate and trusting relationships which can lead to individual and collective healing.
Her work history is an eclectic mix which includes Sign Language interpreting, co-founding Calyx Community Arts School, working at the Abused Deaf Women’s Advocacy Services, managing the Power of Hope summer camp, choreographing musicals, landscaping, and short-term stints in China, Dominican Republic, Nepal, and Jenin, Palestine where she taught expressive arts classes to students of The Freedom Theatre. Her most profound journey is that as a parent to her now teenage son.
Manifesting works. The Universe listens. Everything that Will is has led him to everything that is Whidbey Institute — the serenity of nature, open and hopeful people, and a respectful symbiosis of both. Life is a journey (trite but true!), whether it be a leisurely walk alone in the woods or a deep conversation with fellow humans. Life as a routine is uninspiring. Will knows. Thirty years in advertising on the east coast was always exciting, sometimes routine, and often chaotic. Change is a positive thing if it makes life better. Then, the journey is fun and inspiring. Will loves to hike, assist others, foster optimism, and encourage smiles and laughter as much as possible. Life should always be fun and inspiring, for everyone. Manifest it. The Universe answers. Just ask Will.
Larry brings a lifetime of interest in the natural world to his role as Forest Steward. He has spent years studying the interconnected relationship of the forest and soil, and how a changing climate is impacting this delicate balance. Among his duties as Forest Steward is the responsibility for maintaining the extensive trail system at the Whidbey Institute, and coordinating the amazing volunteers who help care for the trails.
Larry has a BS in Forestry from Purdue University and has worked throughout the Pacific Northwest and Alaska with the US Forest Service and Alaska native tribes. He has owned and operated Rohan Designs, a custom woodworking business serving Whidbey Island and beyond.
Larry is a longtime volunteer with the non-profit Hearts and Hammers, using his building and leadership skills to improve the lives of island residents. He has planted hundreds of conifer and hardwood trees on Whidbey Island and the Olympic Peninsula. He is married and is the father of two wonderful children. His interests include skiing, hiking, trail running, and calling to owls.
Bio coming soon…
The spaces we dwell in profoundly affect our ability to hear our innermost voice- and to listen deeply to the voices of others as well. Madison maintains sacred spaces for this purpose at the Whidbey Institute through housekeeping.
Madison is currently off-site and pursuing her own work in the world, and will be returning to the Institute in September. A field geologist, she is currently investigating the feasibility of a new potential mining district in rural Arctic Alaska. By dreaming big and building bridges in communities everywhere, she hopes to transform humanity’s relationship to minerals, and promote the sovereignty and well-being of local communities whose land and livelihood is most at stake.
Madison is grateful to be a recent graduate of the Wayfinders residency program at the Whidbey Institute in early 2023, and to reside in a loving community near the Whidbey Institute since 2020.
Ananda provides interim executive director leadership, facilitates organizational transformation, and coaches values-aligned leaders. He is passionate about nourishing joyful organizational cultures, supporting equitable self-management, and building liberatory practices. They have served as interim executive director at multiple organizations, provided capacity-building support to nonprofits for over ten years, and currently sit on the boards of Change Elemental and Hampshire College. Ananda grew up in Puerto Rico and slowly made her way across the United States, holding a variety of consulting, governance, and activist roles along the way.
Writer. Director. Teacher. Previously the Founding Artistic Director of Island Shakespeare Festival. She has served as Artistic Director for three theatre companies in the San Francisco Bay Area and has worked across the country with both professional and youth theatre companies. She is a professional screenwriter, playwright and author. She was awarded a commendation from Senator Barbara Boxer for her work with youth in teaching tolerance and is the recipient of a number of awards for both her writing and directing, including the Elizabeth George Foundation Grant, Humanitarian Teacher of the Year Award from the Marin Humane Society, and a variety of national and international recognition for her screenwriting. She is a proud bunny mum and has been known to rescue animals in need.