Advisory Council

Our Advisory Council

Jarid Manos

Senior Advisory Council Member

Founder & CEO, Great Plains Restoration Council, Author

Jarid Manos, is the Founder and CEO of Great Plains Restoration Council www.gprc.org, a published Author of the Eco-autobiography Ghetto Plainsman, and the blogstory Fear and Loving: Where Sea Level Meets the Deep  www.jaridmanos.com.  Through his vision and guidance he founded the Ecological Health movement and founded community based Ecotherapy interventions like Restoration Not Incarceration™, Your Health Outdoors™ and Plains Youth InterACTION™. GPRC’s on-the-ground projects have been in Texas, New Mexico, and South Dakota. GPRC now helps people nationwide take care of their own health through taking care of the Earth.

Batul True Heart
Batul True Heart
Queer Curandera

Batul True Heart (they/them) is an Indigenous Yaqui (Yoeme) and mixed Panamanian-American (of Indigenous, African, and Spanish descent) Queer and Two-Spirit Curanderismo practitioner, community herbalist, and aspiring death doula. Batul has been walking a healing road for 15 years claiming the truth of who they are by (re)connecting with their ancestors, (re)learning traditional ceremonies and practices, and making relationship with the medicine of the plants. Batul is also an educator, speaker, and writer on the topics of ancestral reclamation, resolution, and cultural responsibility. Batul’s life work is to usher and support people in general, and people of color and queer folks in particular, to return to their ancestral roots, in order to be who they truly are.

Dr. Michael Mason
Folklorist, Author

Dr. Michael Atwood Mason was initiated in the Lucumí Oricha tradition in 1992. He is an active priest of Ochún and a scholar of Arfo-Latinx religious traditions. As a babalocha, he performed the first priestly initiation in Washington, D.C. in 1995 and has initiated more than 100 people into the tradition. Since 1998, he has served Babalú-Aye and explored the role of this powerful and mysterious deity of the Earth in personal and collective life in nature. A champion of cultural sustainability, Mason has spent his career in public folklore supporting communities in identifying, documenting, preserving, and sharing the culture that matters most to them. Since completing his PhD, he has authored Living Santería: Rituals and Experiences in an Afro-Cuban Religion (Smithsonian Institution Press, 2002) and the cultural blog: Baba Who? Babalú! http://baba-who-babalu-santeria.blogs

Rain Sussman
Rain Sussman, LCSW
Psychotherapist, Ecotherapist
Rain helps individuals with active, analytical minds to work through anxiety-related problems such as panic, worry, avoidance, and compulsive thoughts or habits. Her approach is warm, practical, and evidence-based, grounded in both mindfulness and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Many of her clients are nature-lovers, and find that connecting with nature helps them to unwind. Her office’s tranquil garden setting, coupled with my training in Ecotherapy, supports clients interested in exploring this aspect of health and well-being. She have over twenty years’ experience counseling adults, teens and elders. Rain also enjoys teaching graduate-level psychology courses at CIIS and JFK University, and periodically offer workshops and stress reduction classes for the general public.
Craig Chalquist
Dr. Craig Chalquist
Psychotherapist & Ecotherapist

Craig Chalquist, Ph.D. is core faculty in East-West Psychology and former Associate Provost of Pacifica Graduate Institute. He teaches at the intersection of psyche, store, nature, reenchantment, and imagination through courses on depth psychology, applied folklore, ecotherapy, and his own field of terra psychology, the study of how things of the world get into our hearts and live there: “Converse with everything!” Founder of the world’s first ecotherapy certificate program, Dr. Chalquist is on the board of Holos Institute and on the editorial board of the journal Ecopsychology. His books include Ecotherapy: Healing with Nature in Mind (edited with Linda Buzzell; Counterpoint, 2008), Myths Among Us: When Timeless Tales Return to Life (World Soul Books, 2018), and Terrapsychological Inquiry: Restorying Our Relationship with Nature, Place, and Planet (Routledge, 2020).

Amara Tabor-Smith
Dancer/Artistic Director

Amara Tabor-Smith is an Initiated Elder of the Oricha/Deity of the Sea Yemaya in the Lucumi Religion, Dancer and Artist.  She describes her experimental dance theater work as Afro Surrealist Conjure Art. Her dance making practice,  utilizes Yoruba spiritual ritual to address issues of social and environmental justice, community, identity and belonging. A San Francisco native and Oakland resident, she is the artistic director of Deep Waters Dance Theater (DWDT) www.deepwatersdance.com

Amara received her MFA in dance through Hollins University and The Frankfurt University of Music and Performing Arts in Germany, and is an artist in residence at Stanford University.

Ellen Morrison (2)
Ellen Morrison
Psychotherapist, Power and Race Equity Coach

Ellen Morrison, LCSW, is a clinician, mediator and consultant collaborating with individuals and groups in catalyzing their efforts toward equity, bringing attention to the analysis of power as a core element of interpersonal and organizational change With over twenty years of experience in the field of community mental health specializing in intercultural and interracial relationships, she is skilled at addressing racial trauma and integrating restorative practices.  Her consultancy practice currently focuses on antiracism organizing and facilitation.

Our Interns

Alex Williams
Alex Williams
MSW Graduate Student, Syracuse University

Alex Williams received her B.A in Psychology from the University of South Florida where she discovered her passion for working with youth in education. Alex is currently attending Syracuse University working towards receiving her Master’s in Social Work where she has found a professional interest focusing on Ecotherapy and Social Justice. Through this learning, Alex hopes to combine her love of healing with nature and working with youth as she continues to explore different professional opportunities. 

Myreisha Barber
Myriesha Barber
Research Assistant, MA/Phd A.B.D. Pacifica University Depth Psychology with a specialization in Community, Liberation, Indigenous, Eco-psychologies

Myriesha Barber,  serves in many roles in the community as a gardener,  herbalist, scholar, chef, artist, poet, and creative expressions facilitator, who has been involved in many types of activism in her home community. She is obtaining a PhD in Depth Psychology with a specialization in Community, Liberation, Indigenous, and Eco-Psychology. 

Her work in food justice and social justice strives towards building stronger communities within these movements and preserving inter-generational knowledge of healing and sustainability.

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