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whole-life skills for a radically different future

It takes a village!

NikiAnne Feinberg
Director and Co-Founder

NikiAnne Feinberg has over a decade of experience with experiential, nature-based program development in both the nonprofit and academic sectors. She is the co-founder of the School Gardens Program in Santa Barbara, CA, which has been instrumental in implementing food production systems in over 30 public schools, serves on the advisory board of Quail Springs True Nature Society, and holds a BA in International Affairs from George Washington University. Traveling throughout much of Asia, the Americas, and Europe helped ground NikiAnne’s formal education with “real-world” connections and have shaped her cooperative cultural values and commitment to responsible global citizenship. SOIL is the manifestation and culmination of her life experiences in sustainable living, experiential-education leadership, and program management.

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Karen Budd
Registrar and Program Assistant

Karen has lived in intentional community for 10 years where she met and married her husband and home-birthed her son who is now 14 and home-schooled.  They currently live next to Earthaven. Karen has a BS in Psychology and a passion for personal growth work. She is a student of NVC and Byron Katie's "The Work" as well as a long time meditator.   She loves walking in the woods with her human and furry friends.


Carmen Lescher
Administrative Manager, Bookkeeper

Carmen Lescher is a "jill-of-all-trades" who is comfortable on the farm or construction site, around the kitchen, and in the garden or office. She has owned and operated a pasture-based poultry farm; worked on construction crews building passive solar, off-grid houses; and supported many small businesses with online marketing, administration, and bookkeeping. Carmen is currently the Treasurer of Earthaven Ecovillage where she has spent most of the last 10 years as a dedicated and participatory community member. She is happy when she's cooking, solving problems, and practicing nonviolent communication.


Lee Warren
Co-Founder and Consultant

Lee Warren is a homesteader, herbalist, writer, food activist, and the co-founder of Imani Farm, a pasture-based cooperative farm focused on small-scale organic dairy and egg production. She is also a co-founder of Village Terraces CoHousing Neighborhood, a permaculture neighborhood “pod” within Earthaven Ecovillage. Lee has lived, loved, and worked in cooperatives since 1997 and has facilitated work-trade, internships, and apprentice programs for over ten years. Equally passionate about women’s empowerment, nourishing foods, and self-reliant healthcare, she is the Executive Director for the Organic Grower's School.


Courtney Brooke
Programming Coordinator

Courtney Brooke is a Social Ecologist and Regenerative Designer and educator whose work aims to reconnect people with a sense of belonging to place. Her work in the world aims to address the root cause of today’s overwhelming ecological challenges - that humans are starved of a sense of belonging to the places they live. 

Courtney Brooke was raised on a small farm in North Georgia, and has been guided by a lifetime of living close to the land. Her greatest teachers have been the Appalachian Mountains, the land of Aotearoa, and Selu, the Corn Mother. She holds a degree in Ecology from the Odum School of Ecology, University of Georgia, and has 10 years of experience facilitating earth-based education, ecological landscape design, women’s rites of passage, and cultural healing. 

Courtney Brooke has taught and facilitated environmental education curriculum, Deep Ecology, Permaculture Design Courses, hands-on craft and farming workshops, and Holistic Management to a wide range of audiences in 9 countries from toddlers to adults and everyone in between. 

Deeply committed to spreading the healing that comes from belonging to the places we live, Courtney Brooke is passionate about designing learning opportunities that celebrate life. She lives  at Earthaven Ecovillage where she tends the land, raises food, participates in communal ritual agriculture, swims in wild water, enjoys the mysterious blessing of being alive, and tends her own wild Hearth. She loves cooking home-grown and wild foraged foods, playing her flute to the sunrise, running on mountain trails, making compost piles, crafting from natural materials, and bringing people together to create beauty that feeds the holy.

Experience a developing ecovillage for yourself!

Most of SOIL’s classes take place at Earthaven Ecovillage, giving participants a hands-on, skill-building immersion within an authentic community-based, village setting. Tours of Earthaven are also available on a monthly basis, a great way to dip your toe into this long-standing, intergenerational social experiment.

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COVID 19 Response: SOIL is publishing resources and deferring all programs to 2021.Read More
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