“To understand life is to understand ourselves,
and that is both the beginning and the end of education.”
– Jiddu Krishnamurti
Service, Education and Adventure is managed by its nonprofit board. Currently, the Board’s work is focused on growing SEA’s flagship program, Calyx Community Arts School, and nurturing the sustainability of that program.
Board Vice President Rachel Goette is a passionate advocate of child-led learning and natural classrooms. Raised by naturalists, she grew up with a deep connection to the earth. At 18, Rachel left her home to travel in North America and Europe. She eventually settled in Switzerland, where she lived for 15 years. She apprenticed as a graphic designer, worked as an art technician, and taught English while living abroad. She is fluent in the Swiss German dialect, as well as basic High German. Rachel moved to Washington State with her partner right before the birth of their first son. She currently helps manage her family permaculture business while raising two young sons. Her eldest son attends Calyx School. To the SEA Board, Rachel brings her uniquely global perspective, and great enthusiasm for new paradigms in education. She believes that when we empower children with alternative education, paths of service and connection to the earth, we will see a new kind of people begin to lead the way.
Board Member Maisie Greer is a community builder, systems thinker, environmental educator, administrator, and loving mother. She holds a master’s degree in Environmental Studies from Antioch University, New England and is currently Co-Director of Calyx Community Arts School. Maisie came to Whidbey Island from Estes Park, Colorado, where she founded Roots Community School, an organization committed to earth inspired, place-based education. Maisie’s life path was inspired by the quality of her own education, beginning with five years at a school with an adjacent forest. Maisie is passionate about helping people become systems thinkers and problem solvers through understanding how our earth functions as a beautiful, intricate system of relationships. She brings this passion, her rich and varied experience as an environmental educator, and her systems approach to the service of SEA. She believes there is no better classroom than the natural world.
Board Member Lisa Kois is a life-long learner, explorer, thinker, advocate and creator. She has worn many professional hats, including as a human rights lawyer with the United Nations and local and international NGOs, teacher, documentary filmmaker, writer, administrator and researcher. Lisa holds a juris doctorate degree from the University of Minnesota and a Certificate in Humane Education from the Institute for Humane Education. Wherever Lisa has lived or traveled, she has always felt most at home in the natural world. Lisa co-founded Calyx Community Arts School in 2011, and currently serves as Co-Director. The inspiration for Calyx grew out of Lisa’s work as a human rights lawyer and advocate for children; her experience as the daughter of a teacher of special education; her questions about the substance of the right to education; her experience as a mother, aunty and mentor; her strong sense of responsibility to children and to the earth; and a chance meeting and enduring friendship with Whidbey Island artist and naturalist – the late Esther James – who became a mentor to her. Lisa serves on the SEA board because she believes we desperately need new models of education: ones that better serve children, communities and the earth, and ones that nurture the next generation of environmental and social justice leaders.
Board Secretary Alix Roos holds a master’s degree in Holistic Education and a certificate in Non-Profit Management from the University of Washington. She spent several years traveling, observing and teaching at holistic schools in India, New Zealand and the U.S., and draws great inspiration from the work and writings of Jiddu Krishnamurti. She is currently the Executive Director of Friends of Ebey’s, a non-profit dedicated to funding projects and programs that protect, preserve and enhance the cultural and natural resources of Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve. As part of a Whidbey Island family that has been on the island for six generations, Alix has a deep connection to Whidbey Island, its people and its history. Her daughter attends Calyx School. Alix brings her grounding in holistic education, experience in non-profit management, and deep connection to Whidbey Island to the service of SEA. She serves on the board due to her strong belief that children flourish in learning environments where the whole child is nurtured and given the support and space to bloom.
Board President Linda Talley worked in business and marketing at high tech companies and has an MBA from the University of Washington. Since retiring, she has been involved in animal rights work and advocacy, and volunteers for numerous animal rescue groups. She believes that the way we treat animals is an indicator of our humanity and our compassion. Linda has also volunteered as a Court Appointed Special Advocate for Family Law CASA of King County. Linda loves being in the outdoors and especially enjoys hiking and running, and has recently earned her yoga teaching certification. Linda was the first generation in her family to go to college and feels a strong commitment to helping youth access transformative education that builds skills and empowers them to be leaders and change makers of their communities. Linda brings her deep compassion, commitment to educational justice and strong leadership skills to the service of SEA.
Board Treasurer Chan Ye (Yessi) is a bookkeeper and CPA candidate, with a background in budget monitoring and control. She is from Xiamen, China, where she worked for seven years in an international manufacturing company, before she left the company and her country for a year of traveling in New Zealand. The experience changed the course of her life, and she continued to travel and hike in southeast Asia and Nepal. Yessi moved to the U.S. in 2013 with her husband, where she helps run their environmental design and build company. She has been a member of a mapping crew for Green Trails, assigned to hike in Washington, Oregon and California. Yessi is an avid hiker, gardener and nature explorer. She brings her passion for nature adventure and learning, a cross-cultural perspective, and financial accounting skills to the service of SEA.