I’m Marnie Jackson—communications manager, editor, storyteller, designer, and amateur photographer. Since July 2013, I’ve been a voice for the Whidbey Institute through our blog, newsletters, brochures, and announcements. On my colleagues’ advice, I’d like to use this month’s Staff Spotlight article to better introduce myself!
If you get me talking, you’ll quickly learn that I’m a passionate animal rights advocate. I have nine beloved animals in my own family, not counting my three daughters. This summer, all of us—mules, dogs, cats, rabbits, goat, and humans—are in transition from our home in Acme, Whatcom County, to South Whidbey. In fact, our human contingent is spending the first week of July right here in Granny’s.
I grew up in Clinton (SWHS class of ’97), and my middle daughter was born in Langley, so we are truly coming home. I’m excited about being closer to work, and to the community that holds our work at the Whidbey Institute. I’m also excited about connecting with the Whidbey Camano Land Trust, exploring the island’s beaches and trails again, attending monthly vegan potlucks with the Vegans & Vegetarians of Whidbey Island, watching my children form new friendships at South Whidbey Elementary, and connecting more deeply with a community of artists, activists, farmers, neighbors, and friends that I already know and love.
One of the things I enjoy most about working at the Whidbey Institute is the daily inspiration I receive from my colleagues and our partners and fellows. It is deeply moving to work in a place full of such transformative, hopeful energy! The depth of purpose, care, and integrity that I witness in those around me aligns well with my personal life mission: to act with compassion for all Earthlings, and to speak for those who have no voice.
Before coming to the Whidbey Institute, I spent a decade in freelance journalism, with a focus on animals, food sustainability, and timber framing. I continue to serve as a contract editor for the Timber Framers Guild, an educational non-profit dedicated to the art and science of timber framing. I also dabble as a transcriptionist for one of the world’s handsomest blogging mules, at www.braysofourlives.com! The volume of posts has dwindled since Fenway Bartholomule retired a couple of years ago, but we hope that this summer’s moving adventure will provide fodder for another round of gripping tales from the mules’ point of view. He’ll be staying with a relative in Oak Harbor for the month of July (we’d invite him to the Whidbey Institute, but we’re afraid he’d eat the Westgarden).