BIOS

 NANCY JEWEL POER has lived the American Dream and wants to support others to experience strong, spiritually inspired, fulfilling destinies for their lives. Wife, mother of six, grandmother of many, teacher, international lecturer, cowgirl, rancher,  sky diver,  pilot, and activist for healthy, non GMO food, (she wore her salmon outfit to protest at the state capitol, made her own saddle, and she and her husband and son made their own airplane!)  Nancy is an artist, film maker, and author of a seminal book on home death, Living Into Dying, Spiritual and Practical Death care for Family and Community (she is “grandmother” of  the national home death movement) and producer of an award winning documentary on conscious dying.   Dedicated to Steiner’s ideals of practical spiritual work in the world, she is the founding teacher of Cedar Springs Waldorf School and a founder of Rudolf Steiner College, working closely with Carl Stegmann. She has been on the faculty of RSC since it began and has taught courses in the spiritual role of women in America and America’s higher mission, women’s issues, Waldorf education, early childhood, parenting and threshold work. Her greatest joy: “Seeing the spirit shine in others!” www.nancyjewelpoer.com  Blog: Whitefeather2014.wordpress.com

ASTRID SCHMITT-STEGMANN, MA  has been Director of Waldorf Teacher Education Programs at Rudolf Steiner College, has over 30 years experience working with children in Waldorf schools and with students in teacher education programs worldwide. She has taught in teacher training centers, lectured, and mentored Waldorf schools in the United States, Switzerland, Germany, Russia, Thailand, India, the Philippines, and Mexico. One of her publications in English is The Uniqueness of Waldorf Education. Astrid is the daughter of Carl and Christine Stegmann.

BRIAN GRAY trained as an architect and has taught at Rudolf Steiner College since 1981. A musician and longtime student of anthroposophy and star wisdom. He studied with Willi Sucher and Rene Querido. Brian enthusiastically shares Rudolf Steiner’s insights with others and has taught classes to aspiring teachers in Waldorf schools around the world. He loves to draw attention to the spiritual beings dwelling in the stars and to our true connections with the cosmos. He is the author of the book Discovering the Zodiac in the Raphael Madonna Series.  So many grateful students over the years have had Brian lift their eyes to know the stars and have received guiding inspirations from him in their star charts.   www.wisecosmos.com

 JEANNE FEENEY is a dancer, choreographer,  movement therapist and certified practicer of Body-Mind Centering®.  She directs the Movement Laboratory and has taught classes around the country in many settings from corporate seminars to support for new mothers in pre-natal and infant development. "In my work I transmit the idea that through the embodiment of ourselves, we can support the transformation of the soul and further our work in the world.” info@movementlaboratory.com

DR. KELLY SUTTON, board certified in internal medicine and anthroposophic medicine,has had a medical practice in Fair Oaks, CA., for the past ten years, providing consultations in anthroposophic and integrative medicine. She is an activist on public health issues such as vaccine mandates and GMOs and spearheaded the free online anthroposophic medicine library   www.SophiaMicha-elRemedies.com., A new url to help parents get medical exemptions will be available soon.    She has trained with Donnie Yance in botanicals and cancer, and is studying genetic mutations (SNPs) with Steve Ottersberg PhD. She raised two sons in New Hampshire where she had a primary care medical practice for 18 years, and prior to that worked in Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi. https://www.raphaelmedicine.com/3vaccinemyths-em  www.raphaelmedicine.com   info@raphaelmedicine.com   (916)-671-1780

CHRISTIAN HEATH has taken community activism and engagement with governmental process as both the right and responsibility of an active citizen.  Christian successfully coordinated the campaign to protect Marin county from GMO’s in 2004.  He has been a California Legislative organizer reaching diverse groups to help bring about legislation on issues that concern public health and welfare. Christian is a legal assistant and notary and is currently working with legislative groups and others to help prevent the violation of human rights and war escalation in Iran.

 JACK PETRASH  is a dedicated and admired Waldorf teacher who took four classes through The Washington Waldorf School in 32 years of teaching. Known for his warm humor and accessibility as a parent educator, Jack has authored books that are classics in the field;  Understanding Waldorf Eduction Teaching From the Inside Out, ..Covering Home,  and Navigating the Terrain of Childhood, A Guide Book for Meaningful Parenting and Heartfelt Discipline. Jack is a Courage to Teach facilitator and his parenting pieces have appeared in the Washington Post, on NPR, and his TED X talk on "Educating Children for the Journey” has been viewed extensively. www.novainstitute.com

ISABELLE MCDANIEL is a Waldorf “lifer” who is passionate about the arts and education. She has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from UC Santa Cruz and a masters degrees in education and educational leadership from Mills College and UC Berkeley.  She has worked as an elementary teacher, lead teacher, and most recently as the Coordinator of Educational Support at Creative Arts Charter School in San Francisco. She is currently the Coordinator of Early Childhood Education for Berkeley Unified School District. A supervisor and coach, Isabelle seeks ways  to effectively build relationships with teachers, supporting them to improve their practice and meet the educational and social needs of their diverse student populations.

SHAUNA HEISELT, L.C.S.W.,  is a teacher/social worker with a rich and varied career working with diverse populations of society. Bi-lingual and California credentialed as well as a certified Waldorf teacher, she has taught over 14 years in private and charters schools. Shauna spent three years in the Peace Corps in Costa Rica.  She currently teaches Waldorf parenting groups for La Vida Charter School near Ukiah, California, as well as consulting for Head Start programs in rural areas.  Shauna has worked with Children’s Welfare Service (CPS) for the past 20 years. With a deep interest in biography and the arts, she is one of the founders of the Cultural Renaissance Project and Hearthstone Village that give support to orphanages in Haiti and Mexico.

 BODO LANGEN  has taught practical arts and crafts in many Waldorf teacher training programs for23 years and in high school at Highland Hall for 14 years. With special interest for children who are different learners, Bodo is an outspoken defender of the incarnations of today’s children and the brave Waldorf teachers who will teach them. He speaks unequivocally of the children needing to be in nature, learning skills with their hands and developing resiliency.  Seven years ago he founded Pine Mountain Arts school where up to 25 students per week from ages 7-25 are engaged in archery, black smithing, forging, sculpting, copper smithing, woodworking and more.  Bodo is also a master bee keeper.  www.pinemountainarts.org

 JUSTINE EPSTEIN is a fledgling poet, pilgrim, philosopher, dreamer, and researcher of the human spirit. She graduated from Colorado College with distinction in Philosophy. Her thesis was on the centrality of grief and mourning in human kind's coming to terms with our current ecological and social crises.  Justine is now a student of wilderness-based rites of passage and a practice of deep listening and community building called council,  about regenerating relations between human beings and the natural world. A youth ambassador for the School of Lost Borders,  she is also part of an educational pilgrimage journey called Walking Water  supporting healing between human beings and water. She finds solace in writing in, with and for the wild.

HAROLD HOVEN is a master gardener, director of Raphael Garden at Rudolf Steiner College since 1987.  He is the founder of BDANC (Biodynamic Association of Northern California). He teaches the Biodynamic Farming and Gardening workshop series, leads evening study groups including gardening and phenomenology. Trained in Germany, he apprenticed on biodynamic farms and gardens in Europe and received his certification in horticulture.  At Rudolf Steiner College since1987, Harald is well known as a regional and international speaker on biodynamic farming and gardening. Seed saving is one of his special areas of expertise. He will be including young farmers in his work for the America Conference.

CAROL PETRASH  is an initiator and coordinator of the America Conference. Carol is well prepared for such a role as a Waldorf mom/wife, Waldorf parent group leader and through many productive years as a Waldorf kindergarten teacher. Carol has written a much appreciated book on children and nature Earthwise, Environmental Crafts and Activities with Young Children. Carol will handle registration, scholarships, partial work exchanges, lodging, questions and more. She is the "go to” & "make it happen" lady for the conference!