We recently welcomed non-profit professional, frequent volunteer, and inspiring collaborator Dani Turk to the Whidbey Institute Board of Directors. This week, Dani and I connected about her background, her interest in serving, and what she sees as possible in partnership with the Whidbey Institute team and community. Here’s that conversation. —Marnie Jackson
Can you share a bit about your background and professional interests?
My last 20 years as a non-profit professional has primarily focused on creating programs and systems designed to help people thrive. This work has included serving my community in the areas of homelessness, food insecurity, and foster care. I’m passionate about creating spaces and opportunities for children, adults, and families to explore, learn and grow. This work, for me, includes addressing racial and economic disparities to advance equity and social justice.
What led you to the Whidbey Institute?
I was first introduced to the Whidbey Institute through my participation in Pacific Integral’s Generating Transformational Change program in 2017. Every three months, I had the opportunity to spend five incredible days of deep reflection and learning at the Institute.
I felt drawn to the land, the creation of sacred space, and the unique programming for individuals and groups to authentically connect, reflect, and learn . . . and ultimately, to be inspired to thoughtfully respond to the growing needs of our times.
How does your personal passion or purpose align with the work of the Whidbey Institute?
I believe my deep commitment to personal evolution and the support of this in others will inspire growth and healing within and among us, and I believe it is this work that will ultimately create conditions for the change we are being called to make in our world.
Through this deep connection to self, others, and nature, the Whidbey Institute powerfully enables each one of us to grow our capacity to collectively create a just, vibrant, and peaceful future where we can thrive with love as one with our planet.
What are you most excited about in joining the board?
I am excited to join a community that is working in service to the collective with a vision of personal and global transformation, through collaborative action.
I have been most moved by the ways the staff and board embody the Whidbey Institute mission. I have been involved with many non-profit organizations over the years. Few share the heart, authenticity, progressive vision, or capacity for risk and change that I see here. Transitioning the Institute to a Holocracy model of self-organization is one example by which I am awestruck and deeply inspired.
Are there any particular concerns, hopes, or opportunities that you see in joining the Whidbey Institute team at this unusual moment in our collective experience?
I am truly honored to join the Whidbey Institute board, staff, volunteers, and community in serving the mission of this very special organization. It couldn’t be a more critical moment in history to collectively, with hope and love, greet the challenges of our time and the promise of new possibilities. I begin this journey knowing challenging circumstances can bring out the best in us.
Marnie, these words you wrote last week inspired me—“May we experience what is possible when our collective courage, compassion and responsibility are awakened.”I draw on this inspiration as I join all of you in building our path forward.