Leadership Team

shea

SHEA ARMSTRONG
Shea’s life was profoundly shaped by the animals and ecosystems of the Loess Bluffs in northwest Missouri, where she was raised. There she claimed an identity deeply interwoven with wild nature and has been an advocate since. For fifteen years she’s been immersed in endangered species recovery as a wildlife biologist. As a recent transplant to Florida, Shea monitors shorebird populations as part of a statewide conservation network.

In 2010 Shea experienced her first Global Earth Exchange at the Boulder, CO coal plant.  The experience transformed her relationship with the tension between grief, beauty, and wounded places. Since then she has made Acts of Beauty a part of her life practice and shares the mission of Radical Joy in all her circles.

With the Radical Joy for Hard Times community, Shea joyfully shares her gifts of partnership and programmatic development, fundraising, and outreach. She is deeply honored to join the brilliant hearts and minds that strive to restore our relationship will all of nature. When not conspiring for Radical Joy, Shea guides nature-based ceremonies for healing and empowerment as the founder of Rite in the Wild.

Tom-deBree


TOM DEBREE
Tom’s soul sprouted in unguarded hours playing as a boy in the woods surrounding his family home in downstate NY. There, then, first stirred habitation of the Sacred.

He affirms radical joy wrested from hard seasons, fear-filled wounds, awe-full experience, relationships and a 35-year vocation in ministry. Pastor, “interim” specialist, chaplain to hospital trauma patients, hospice minister—they challenged and channeled inward and outward spiritual work.

“Radical joy is facing grief, vulnerability, and fear while embracing healing grace in beauty and love connecting all living beings.”

Tom (Td) fulfills a vital Advisor role for Ground Beneath Our Hearts. He is grateful and humbled to celebrate the natural bridge between all creatures, places and times as a new student in the Rad Joy “school”. Td brings gifts and skills for organizational development, processing deep change for individuals or systems, and compass vision for a soulful and sustainable earth future.

Polly-Howells
POLLY HOWELLS
Polly Howells grew up in the woods west of Boston and on the shore of southern Maine.  Both psychotherapists in private practice, she and her husband Eric Werthman brought their two sons each August, the “shrinks’ month off,” to the camp on Lake Mooselookmeguntic in the western mountains of Maine. These wild places have always inhabited her psyche, although she has lived in Brooklyn, New York most of her adult life.

In 2007, having met Pachamama Alliance founder Lynne Twist in San Francisco, she and Eric took a life-changing Pachamama voyage to the Ecuadorian Amazon where they spent time with people from the Achuar tribe and learned first hand of the dangers they and their life-giving forest face from international oil companies.

Since that trip, Polly has trained and worked as a facilitator for the Pachamama Alliance’s “Awakening the Dreamer symposium,” was Board Chair and is still a board member of Bioneers, and is a core member of Woodstock NY Transition.  She trained for ten years with Jungian Analyst Marion Woodman and her colleagues in a practice called BodySoulRhythms, and from this training she and two colleagues lead a five-day yearly retreat for women in the Berkshire Mountains called “Reclaiming Our Lives, Reclaiming Our Earth.” She feels deeply aligned with the mission of Radical Joy for Hard Times.rough  fostering a deep first-hand relationship with nature in his transformation work with leaders and encouraging communities’ connection with the wounded places of the land.

JOANNE


JOANNE MARTIN
As a former banker and co-owner of a specialty metals company, Joanne’s past complicity in the Industrial Growth Society is a powerful motivator for her present day earth work. A return to graduate school to study ecopsychology has transformed her work and life.

Joanne’s first Global Earth Exchange was experienced as a long distance road trip in her Subaru painted with Radical Joy artwork. Believing that people in the world are suffering greatly from the woundedness of their landscapes, she is passionately committed to making and finding beauty in ravaged land and heartscapes.

Joanne is a Principal with East Vision Partners, and her leadership development work is to emphasize the tenets of triple bottom-line strategies. As an educator and facilitator she is dedicated to helping individuals and communities discover their ecological identities in service of creating a life-sustaining society.

Having recently moved to a region experiencing an explosion in natural gas development, Joanne is witnessing the growing destruction of the local landscape. Her dream is to raise the ecological consciousness in the local community and bring equal consideration to the environment.
Joanne brings a lifelong love of nature, extensive business experience, and a strong compassionate heart to Radical Joy for Hard Times.


EMILY RYAN
Emily was born in Bristol, CT, where she lived with her parents and three sisters until she was eight, when her family moved to a small valley in the foothills of rural Vermont. Her feelings of intimacy with the natural world developed slowly, one season at a time, as the sidewalks of their close-knit neighborhood quickly gave way to dirt roads, dense green leaves, and the constant sound of moving water from the brook that ran behind their house. As her outer world revealed the wonder and complexity of Life’s forms, her inner world awakened. She came to know her relevance and beauty through the inherent recognition that she belonged to the vast, mysterious World around her.

Through the arc of her personal and professional journey, Emily realized the experience that marked her childhood was the awakening of her ecological, or Gaian self. Sharing this fundamental knowledge of our true nature is the central goal of her calling as a transformative, environmental educator. Emily collaborates with both organizations and individuals, designing and delivering unique learning journeys for communities of people all over the world. Her work combines elements of the Work That Reconnects, the Goethean method, systems thinking and deep ecology.

She is thrilled to contribute to vision and practice of the rare and inspiring organization that is Radical Joy for Hard Times. Emily lives bi-coastally, sharing her time between Vermont and the Bay Area.