How might your current work contribute to the sustainability movement?
Certified in Permaculture, trained under tutelage of Bill Mollison & Scottie Pittman at Ojai Institute in 1997. I've been working on sustainable, plant based diet food policy since 1968, from age 14. I'm an Eco-Gastronomy Educator, community garden advocate and "nutrition wonk". I taught Macrobiotic Locavore paradigms in 1970's back in the Stone Age, when normative culture ridiculed that ethos. 1974 began studying Masanobu Fukoka's "One Straw Revolution" theories. During the 1980's and early 1990's spent 11 years working full time as a professional Human Rights Worker on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. performing legislative liason, created consumer education campaigns, advocacy work on agrarian reform, land reform - employed by national environmental NGO's and an agrarian legal defense fund financed by Farm Aid.
In what ways do you personally identify with the Sustainability & Transition movement? Why are you interested?
As a Permaculturalist, I believe in decentralized, grassroots organizing. After doing community organizing 45 years, I am DONE trying to convince our govt. leaders. I am DONE, stick a fork in me - I am DONE trying to change the govt. and educate politicians!
I do what works. Educating youth is my passion. I'm focused on working with inner city "Food Desert" target population creating indie, wholesale organic/nutrient dense food distribution systems. 90% of national manufacturers/wholesale distributors in organic/natural food industry was purchased by hegemonic, trans-national corporate agribusiness cartels around 1990 to 1997.
Our organic foods industry was hijacked - we lost control of the industry - so we must go back to basics and re-create an AUTHENTIC organic food distribution system.
What background and skills do you bring to this community?
25 years corporate experience as Office Manager, Executive Assistant to Fortune 500 corporations. Started out as 15 year old clerk typist in 1969. Escaped at age 42 when I no longer was willing to be a white collar "wage slave" in the "pink collar ghetto" of office techno matrix of enslavement. What helped me survive 25 years of white collar office employment was concurrently doing pro bono syndicalist/union organizing throughout
2 1/2 decades of being an alienated, frustrated, administrative prole in corporate sector. 25 years of corporate sector employment gave me strong administrative skills. I have excellent business talents, marketing, promotion, supervising staff, communications, media relations, personnel, delegation. My strength is forecasting, predicting market trends, strategic planning.
I have 23 years experience performing Mental Health advocacy and am well versed on disability civil rights issues.
Left corporate sector in 1983 after 25 years of self-induced enslavement. Changed my world view and moved from S.F. to Washington, D.C. Spent 11 years full time work on Capitol Hill advocating Permaculture/Biodynamic Agriculture. Communications Director of Organic Farms, Inc., Beltsville, Maryland. (5 minutes from USDA Headquarters in College Park, MD.) In the 1980's, Organic Farms Inc. was North America's largest wholesale distributor of organic foods - grossing $20 million annually, employed over 100 people with international/national distribution network.
Office Manager, Family Farm Defense Fund, Washington, D.C.
Worked for 3 years for Nurses Association of American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Professional trade association for neo-natal nurses.
B.A. Interdisciplinary Humanities
(degree is in progress - need 2 more classes)
Holy Names University, Oakland
Summa Cum Laude Graduate
American River College
Sacramento City College - Class of 2004
A.A. Social Science
A.A. Liberal Arts
A.A. Recreation Administration
2004 - one semester at New College of California, San Francisco - Global Studies/Interdisciplinary Humanities major. Unbearable, disorganized, chaotic mess of "radical chic" left-y college run by corrupt, psycho cult leader. Thankfully New College of California was decertified by WASC and shut down by Federal Dept. of Education in 2005. However, brilliant faculty made it a worthwhile experience. Wherever you are, Professor Kris Brandenburg and Professor Jerry Dekker - god bless you!
Certified, Level One Permaculture
Trained by Bill Mollison, Scottie Pittman
1997 - Ojai Foundation - 3 week residential
Certificate Program, Culinary Arts - Hotel &
Hospitality Industry - Classically Trained Chef
1983 - "The Educated Palate"
S.F. City College - Downtown Campus
Trained by Executive Chef, Steven Weeks
Extensive experience tutoring classical Trivium - Quadrivium to K-12 inner city youngsters.
Fine Arts Instructional Assistant, Hemispheres Academy, Sacramento - after school intervention program
Tutored in numerous K-12 inner city public schools in Sacramento - after school intervention programs 2000 - 2004
Literacy Tutor - Writing Coach
ESL students & mainstream college students
Sacramento City College
Learning Resource Center - Writing Center
Community Garden Advocate - since 2007
Join cooperative movement in 1974 - belonged to organic food coops all over USA for 37 years.
Classically trained artist - strong background in ballet, classical live stage theatre, worked in Hollywood film/cable industry 1976 to 1979. Published poet. I am classically trained in Medieval Troubador Warrior poetry.
What aspects of the sustainability movement most interests you?
In order not to die with a heart full of suffering - not to be overwhelmed with despair, I need to join your organization.
There is nothing more tragic than the cynicism of a "failed romantic".
45 years experience in community organizing has not left me discouraged, just feeling "worn out". I rage against the "mega-machine" yet, know I must cultivate feel a sense of serenity, buoyancy, hope and faith things will work out despite global catastrophic environmental damage. Everywhere around me I see chaos, civilization collapsing. As I face the abyss - the ashen wasteland.....actually it is O.K. I understand out of the ashes, phoenix-like a new civilization will replace the fallen empire.
The empire has crashed. The extraction economy has crashed. It started in 10th century England with the "Enclosure Movement"....led to 1492 Conquistadors, rise of colonial empirialism - culminating in September 11th and 2008 Wall Street crash.
We are witnessing the last "death rattle" of the Empire Crash. I am 57 years old and have piece of mind, I can sleep at night, I have a clean conscience. This is due to not having "sold out" my youthful idealism of 1960's movement era which I grew up in at West Side of L.A. at the beach.
I want to join your organization because I reject fear based thinking and must align myself with futurists, oracles, bards, scientists, educator visionaries who have PRACTICAL strategic plan for unprecedented cultural change in the dawn of Third Millenium.
Keep Hope Alive!
Your Favorite Books/Websites/Blogs/RSS Feeds for Information about the Sustainability Movement
Hi Colleen and welcome to the Transition California Community Network! Wow - what a bio and life you have lived! We are Daniel and Darlene Cavallaro "Dandarius' - owners of SeThInk Media and which sponsors/manages this network for a year now. We live in Nevada City which is just 40 minutes from you and we would be honored if you would come and meet us in person up here and perhaps weave some good old fashioned grounded strategies for the 'dawn of the Third Millenium'. Let us know if this would be possible - we can be reached through private message (click our icon and you will go to our 'page' and then click 'send message' below our logo) or you can call us anytime at 530-470-0339 - leave message if we don't answer...we are outside a great deal on the land here watering and taking care of the animals :-)
Cheers and thank you again for joining this community!