I am a storyteller and a collector of myths. The word myth has been misused to mean something that is false, when in actuality, myths are sacred stories passed down to us from our ancestors. Myths are one of the easiest ways to begin a conversation with the soul in the language of the Earth.
From the theatrical stage to the emerging field of the environmental humanities, I have crafted together a living as a storyteller and teacher of stories and storytelling. I specialize in assisting the healing of personal narratives when teaching mythology. We can heal our trauma by cultivating a stronger relationship to Nature through acts of creativity and through mindful awareness of how we hold trauma in our bodies and in how we can release it..
I am interested in how myth and ritual work together to create meaningful community.
When I was 16, I apprenticed myself to two Native elders as a ceremony assistant. One It was at this time that I was told the prophecy of The Seventh Generation. My teacher, Earl said, " That in the time of the Seventh Generation, a Rainbow Tribe of people would begin to gather to heal the wounds of the world, not through wars or treaties, but in lighting sacred fires and sharing our stories." When I heard that story, I knew I wanted to be at those fires to hear those stories and hoped by that time, I might have some to share. This story shaped the trajectory of my life and solidified my love for the performing arts which led to a degree and career in writing and eventually to my love for mythology.
I hold a doctorate in Mythological Studies with an emphasis in Depth Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute, CA. Pacifica’s Mythological Studies program, a unique interdisciplinary humanities program, is the only doctoral program in the country that investigates mythologies and cultural traditions through the lenses of religious studies, literature, and depth psychology. I was the second recipient of the Christine Downing Dissertation Fellowship Award at OPUS Archives in 2013/14 which allowed me to work with the personal archives of Joseph Campbell, James Hillman, Christine Downing, Jane Hollister Wheelwright and Marion Woodman when completing my doctoral research.
I also have a certificate in ecopsychology from Pacifica.
It is from this blended humanities perspective and from my deep roots in Indigenous spirituality that I approach my work and teach World Mythologies at Oakton Community College in Des Plaines, IL, At Oakton, I have served on the advisory council of the Environmental Studies Concentration since it began in 2015. I am part of a working group to increase connections between the College and the Indigenous Peoples of the greater Chicago area. In 2016, I went to Standing Rock and became a Water Protector. it was there, at the largest gathering of Indigenous Peoples ever in modern history, that I witnessed the Sacred Fires of the Seventh Generation had been lit. When I returned, I helped to co-found, Water Protectors of Milwaukee dedicated to protecting Lake Michigan with actions and event planning that give a platform for Native Wisdom Keepers.
Most recently, I helped co-found Holding Space, a healing arts collective in St Francis, WI.
I teach "Myth and the Modern Age" at Northern Vermont University, and I have also taught "The Healing Power of Creativity" at Pacifica Graduate Institute in their Engaged Humanities and Creative Life M.A. program. I continue to work as a freelance actor and director.
Milwaukee Repertory Theater
Next Act Theatre
First Stage Children's Theater
Milwaukee Chamber Theatre
Bunny Gumbo Theatre
Waukesha Civic Theater
Milwaukee Shakespeare Co.
Internal Combustion Theatre
Kenosha Civil War Museum, Kenosha WI
Dark Goddess Festival, Denver CO.