Core Faculty    
Karen Aguiar Trinity Ava Bryan Bowen
Jen Bredesen Courtney Fischer David Hoffmann
Terri Jensen Rebecca Maxfield Jason Miller
Daniel Pinney Colleen Bingham Solis Autumn Summers
Guest Faculty    
7Song Kate August Tim Blakley
Susan Blanc Amy Charnay Denise Cooluris ND
Jackie Davey Kara Davey Brittany Jade
Jim Hall Kathleen Harrison Sheila Kingsbury ND
Sage LaPena Robin Lander Jim Mcdonald
Lily Mazzarella Larkin Morgan Shad Reinstein
Karyn Sanders Becka Sheranian Kara Sigler
Christa Sinadinos Tamara Wilder other guests
Leslie Gardner Cascade Anderson Geller Charmoon Richardson

Core CSHS Faculty

Some of the CSHS Staff members in the CSHS garden -From Left to right -Trinity Ava, Bryan Bowen, Rebecca Maxfield, Terri Jensen, Jim Hall, David Hoffmann, Courtney Fischer, Jen Bredesen, Daniel Pinney, Karen Aguiar,and Autumn Summers.

karen aguiarKaren Aguiar
herbal medicine maker

Karen has taught medicine making at CSHS since 1998. She loves making medicine with plants and mushrooms and feels pretty fortunate to have found her tribe. She is an organizer of the Northern California Women's Herbal Symposium.

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trinity avaTrinity Ava
Trinity Ava is an artist, mother, mover, lover of food as medicine and the garden as a temple. She is an eastern and western trained herbalist with an emphasis on using essential oils as medicine. Trinity offers over 20 years of teaching, clinical experience and adores being core faculty at the California School of Herbal Studies, teaching at Bastyr University and is a consultant to the natural products industry. Her intention is to inspire and empower individuals with the effectiveness of the herbal tradition. back to top>

Bryan Bowen Bryan Bowen
Msc Clinical Herbalist

Bryan likes to have one hand in science and the other in the earth. He has spent the last eight years studying medicinal plants through ecological farming & gardening, medicine making, botany, physiology, clinical skills and theories of herbal medicine. Bryan enjoys seeing clients and finds inspiration in people, plants and the rhythms of nature. His studies include Tai Sophia Institute, CSHS and Northeast School of Botanical Medicine. back to top>

jen bredesenJen Bredesen
herbalist, CMT

Jen brings nearly 2 decades of experience working with Plants in the field & garden, kitchen, classroom, clinical and first aid arenas into her teaching. She weaves bodywork, ayurveda & western herbalism into her clinical practice in Sebastopol. Jen has been sharing 1st aid skills in the NCWHS Wellness Tent for over a decade. An avid kitchen chemist, she loves to work with fermentation & sustainable living practices, and is a local pioneer in home-brewing herbal beers. She is the mother of an infant daughter. back to top>

diana de lucaCourtney Fischer
herbalist, MS, CNS

Courtney finds plants and their medicine to be intriguing as well as offering a meaningful connection to the earth and what it means to be alive. Many years ago she was first inspired by the medicinal plants in her own backyard, in awe that they not only had the ability to rouse various helpful effects within her when consumed but that this medicine was also so accessible—she has been inquisitively learning about plants, the human body/mind, and healing ever since. She began her herbal studies at Motherland Botanical Sanctuary and CSHS, and then went on to receive her Masters in Herbal Medicine from Maryland University of Integrative Health.
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david hoffmannDavid Hoffmann
B. Sc., F.N.I.M.H.

David has been a phytotherapist for 32 years. He is the author of 17 books, including the Holistic Herbal and Medical Herbalism. He is on the advisory board of the American Botanical Council, a founding member and past president of the American Herbalist Guild and is active in the environmental & peace movements.
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teri jensenTerri Jensen
herbal medicine maker

Terri has been working with botanical medicines in a variety of capacities for over 20 years. She is also a current and founding organizer of the Northern California Women’s Herbal Symposium.

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rebecca maxfieldRebecca Maxfield
herbalist, BA, co-director of CSHS

Rebecca came to Sonoma County 20 years ago to study at CSHS. She lived with her husband and two children on the land at the school for 16 years and now lives in Sebastopol. She worked as the medicine maker at Simplers Botanicals for 8 years and now enjoys making medicine for the CSHS pharmacy as well as being co-director with Jason Miller of CSHS. back to top>

jason millerJason Miller
environmental educator, co-director of CSHS

Jason has been living and working at CSHS for over 15 years. His currently focuses on the stewardship and maintenance of Emerald Valley. His commitment to CSHS is based on a belief that Herbalism plays an important role in building vibrant and sustainable communities.
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autumn summersDaniel Pinney
wilderness guide

Daniel Pinney is our camping trip outfitter and guide. Daniel has 30 years experience leading trips for CSHS, Antioch College and private groups. He brings his passion for hiking, birding and music and love of the outdoors.

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Colleeen Bingham Solis Colleen Bingham Solis

Colleen Marie Bingham began developing her first products as a young child, playing with the soaps and perfumes she found hidden in cupboards. As an adult, she discovered that every ingredient was special and had its own story from where it was grown to when it was harvested. These unique stories taught her that the source and quality of each ingredient would define her health and her impact on the planet. She learned how to refine her choices in the food she ate and the products she bought to slather on her skin. Then in 2010, she signed up for her first herbal studies class, made her first batch of natural skincare, and began her journey as a product formulator and herbalist. Colleen's knowledge of whole plant medicine fused with her topical formulations resulting in the creation of her product line, Poppy Botanicals . Colleen is Lab Manager, Medicine Maker and an Instructor at The California School of Herbal Studies, and is developing and producing natural, plant based beauty products for companies nationwide.

autumn summersAutumn Summers
herbalist, BA ethnobotany

From her first herb class over 25 years ago, Autumn has been exploring the many facets of herbalism with a focus on plant, seaweed and mushroom identification and uses and growing medicinal and edible plants. She is passionate about sharing this empowering knowledge with others in an enthusiastic, hands-on way.
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Guest Faculty

Clinical Herbalist

7Song has been involved in herbal first aid at various events for many years. He has worked as a street medic and as an herbalist at clinics and first aid stations. He has helped run the first aid station at the Rainbow Gathering for over 20 years, which is an off-the-grid health care area that sees up to 150 people a day with a wide range of health conditions. He is director of holistic medicine and a clinical herbalist at the Ithaca Free Clinic. He is also the director of the Northeast School of Botanical Medicine in Ithaca, NY. One of his goals in teaching is showing how herbal medicine offers useful primary and adjunct therapies in first aid situations, especially when working alongside a diversity of health care practitioners.
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Kate August
Kate August is a dreamer, a lover of plants, community and the outdoors. She believes we all have the inherent natural intelligence to bring balance in our lives and the plants are simply one of the ways to invite the harmony. Her relationship with the natural world has transformed over her life, from a child accompanying her mother to her nursery job, to an artist traveling and teaching abroad, to creating seasonal foods and medicines for her community—plant allies have always been there. Combining her various educations, studying plant medicine and pulse diagnosis, Kate is growing a small clinical practice in Oakland. Passionate about connecting people with their plant allies and teaching simple ways to bring herbs into daily practice, Kate teaches workshops in her community and at the California School. Kate is most grounded while being in nature; when not in the kitchen or the garden you can find her at the water’s edge. back to top>

tim blakleyTim Blakley
herbalist, aromatherapist & author

As the Aromatherapist for Aura Cacia, Tim Blakley provides aromatherapy education throughout North America. His 30 years experience includes authoring Medicinal Herbs in the Garden, Field and Marketplace, worldwide travel researching essential oil plants and herbs, and managing the National Center for the Preservation of Medicinal Herbs. He has also held positions with the California School of Herbal Studies, Herb Pharm, and Frontier Natural Products Coop. Tim lives and practices aromatherapy in Hawaii. back to top>

Susan BlancSusan Blanc
Herbalist and Nutritional Educator

Susan Blanc is an herbalist and nutrition educator. She graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with highest honors in 1980, studied Herbalism for 6 years with local and national experts, and received her N.E. and N.C. nutrition certification from Bauman College. Susan offers individual consultations at her private practice in Castro Valley, teaches whole food nutrition classes at Castro Valley Adult School, and is a faculty member at Bauman College of Holistic Nutrition. She has served as a consultant to the California Association of Naturopathic Physicians. back to top>

candis cantinAmy Charnay
MS, CNS ~ Herbalist and Nutritionist.

Amy hails from upstate NY and holds Bachelor’s degrees in Environmental Science & Latin American Studies and a Master’s of Science in Herbal Medicine. She has worked as an Herbalist, Board Certified Nutrition Specialist, and Yoga & Mindfulness Instructor for over a decade. Amy holds an international certification in Aromatherapy and is a FDA trained botanical microscopist with extensive experience in the herbal manufacturing industry where she consults as a formulator and quality control specialist. She has taught as an adjunct faculty member for the Maryland University of Integrative Health Herbal Medicine Masters of Science program since 2006. Amy is passionate about applying her skills as a permaculturist and Sonoma County Master Gardener on her urban homesteading farm called ‘Herban Allies’. She views the human body as a complex and deeply interconnected ecosystem and maintains a private practice in Santa Rosa, CA
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Denise Cooluris NDDenise Cooluris N.D.

Dr. Denise Cooluris is an integrative family physician and a California native having returned from an era in the Pacific NW. After graduation from Bastyr University medical school, she was chosen as one of six national candidates for the family medicine residency program at Bastyr Center for Natural Health. On completion of her residency, she was invited as adjunct clinical faculty at Bastyr University, where she proudly trained students to transform into doctors of integrative medicine. She has interned with the Highline Cancer Center in Burien, WA., Family Medicine Service in Swedish Hospital in Seattle, Oncology Center of Children’s Hospital in Seattle, Planned Parenthood, and aside public health officials in a wide spectrum of community health settings, including Kenya..
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jim hallJackie Davey
herbalist & doula

Jackie Davey has over a decade of experience working with children. Jackie has a busy postpartum doula practice, Birth Realm and more recently is an educator for Doula Trainings International. She graduated from the California School of Herbal Studies in 2009 and continues to explore her love of plants co teaching in the CSHS school garden. back to top>

jim hallKara Davey
Kara Davey brings with her a background in early childhood education with a focus in the creative arts. She recently moved from Venice, CA where she taught both group and private art classes to kids. Currently, Kara is teaching at Wigwam Preschool in Sebastopol, and Cast Away & Folk, in Santa Rosa.

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Brittany JadeBrittany Jade
Educator, midwife, herbalist and founder of Original Instructions School

Brittany Jade began her theoretical training and practicum of midwifery, herbalism and natural healing while still in her teens. After receiving her herbalism and midwifery trainings in Asheville, North Carolina, Brittany moved to Peru. There, she lived alongside and practiced medicine within rural Quechua, Qero and Shippibo communities for a decade. For the past six years Brittany has produced and taught outstanding original trainings in the fields of herbalism and midwifery around the globe. She is blessed to have learned from a handful of indigenous medicine people who have guided her in her practice. While she has spent a significant part of her life in South America, Brittany has also remained rooted to ancestral practices and traditional beliefs stemming from North American indigenous nations. She approaches her work as an educator, herbalist, midwife and healer through her experiential knowledge of the Original Instructions for humanity. She approaches her work and her life with a sense of humility and with the hope that her way of living would make her Ancestors proud. Courses offered in the fields of: Herbalism, Midwifery & Traditional Medicine
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jim hallJim Hall
herbalist, MA, CMT

Jim Hall comes from a family of spiritual healers and has been intensively involved in various holistic healing modalities since 1979. He holds a master's degree in Holistic Health Education from John. F. Kennedy University and has studied with healers from a variety of traditions, including Michael Moore, Kashaya Pomo elder Lorin Smith, Karyn Sanders, Chanchal Cabrera, and medical intuitive Laurie Schyriver. Jim currently teaches at the California School of Herbal Studies in Forestville CA and at the Ohlone Center for Herbal Studies in Berkeley CA. He also has a private herbal and energy healing practice, specializing in alternative treatments for cancer and soul retrieval. He lives in Santa Rosa and can be reached at back to top>

kathleen harrisonKathleen Harrison
ethnobotanist, artist, photographer

Kathleen researches the relationship between plants and people, with a particular focus on art, myth, ritual, and spirituality. She teaches at the California School of Herbal Studies, Sonoma State University, New College of California, and across the country. She has done fieldwork in Latin America for over 25 years, and is the director of Botanical Dimensions, a non-profit project dedicated to exploring the human relationship to medicinal and shamanic plants.
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Sheila Kingsbury NDSheila Kingsbury, ND
Dr. Sheila Kingsbury is a Naturopathic Physician, Lactation Consultant and Registered Herbalist. Dr. Kingsbury is a 2003 graduate of Bastyr University’s naturopathic medicine program and a Licensed Primary Care Provider in Washington State. She has been a Registered Herbalist with the American Herbalists Guild since 2004. Dr. Kingsbury is the chair of the Botanical Medicine department as well as Associate Professor in the School of Naturopathic Medicine at Bastyr University and has been teaching there for 14 years. She regularly teaches courses in Botanical Medicine, Lactation and Pediatrics at Bastyr University and in the community. Dr. Kingsbury has had extensive training in Pediatrics, Maternity and Post-partum care and Botanical Medicine. Dr. Kingsbury worked in the public health field for 5 years prior to her medical training and has been a labor support doula for 19 years and a Lactation Consultant for 17 years. She is the president of the Pediatric Association of Naturopathic Physicians, a former council member for the American Herbalists Guild and an Advisory Board member for the Lloyd Library and Museum. Dr. Kingsbury was the chair of the Seattle-King County Breastfeeding Coalition for 4 years and was awarded the MaryAnn O’Hara Physician Leadership Award in 2008 from the Seattle-King County Breastfeeding Coalition and WithinReach public health organization. She is a freelance writer for Mother Earth Living Magazine and speaks about Botanical Medicine and Pediatrics throughout the US. She has 4 children and lives in rural Washington State and is currently immersing herself in the fiber arts of knitting and spinning.
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Sage LaPenaSage LaPena
herbalist, ethnobotanist

Sage LaPena is an herbalist trained in both Traditional Native American and Western Herbalism protocol. Certified as a Clinical Herbalist since 2006, Sage began her training in the ways of plants as a child, working with Traditional Healers and respected Elders from local tribes of Northern California. Sage has been teaching the uses of California native plants for over 30 years and is a guest lecturer at UC System schools as well as several Herbal schools in California. As a member of American Herbalist’s Guild, United Plant Savers, California Native Plant Society and a board member of Herbal Anthropology Project, she holds herself to a standard of respect, reciprocity and responsibility in the collection and dispensing of all plant material and herbal products made from them. Through her company, Mountain Thistle Botanicals and Consultation, Sage utilizes her skills as an herbalist and educator to foster proactive health and wellness in the native community with presentations on metabolic syndrome, diabetes management, healthy eating with traditional foods and nutrition awareness.
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Robin LanderRobin Lander
herbalist, aromatherapist

Robin Lander is a clinical herbalist, aromatherapist, and wellness educator dedicated to sharing the healing message of plant medicine with the world. With 13 years in the natural products industry, she combines experience and intuition to create therapeutic products that address mind, body and spirit. She is the brand manager, formulator, and sourcing specialist for Simplers Botanicals.
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Sage LaPenaJim Mcdonald

Jim Mcdonald has been practicing the art of herbcraft for over sixteen years, and offers a knowledge of herbalism that blends western folk and indigenous views of healing with the Vitalist traditions of 19th century western herbalism. He has taught classes and workshops throughout Great Lakes bioregion and the US, hosts the website & has written for Plant Healer Magazine, the Journal of the Ontario Herbalists Association and Llewelyn's Herbal Almanac. He is currently writing (alternately) "A Great Lakes Herbal" and "Foundational Herbcraft". Jim is a community herbalist, a manic wildcrafter and medicine maker, an occasional email mangler, and has been an ardent student of the most learned teachers of herbcraft... the plants themselves.
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lily mazzarellaLily Mazzarella
MS - Herbalist

Lily has been a practicing Clinical Herbalist and board-certified Nutrition Specialist for over 10 years. She is owner and lead practitioner at Farmacopia, an integrative clinic and herbal apothecary in Santa Rosa, California. Lily’s practice is informed by scientific study, traditional constitutional systems, attention to the latest research, and an intimate knowledge of the “character” of hundreds of herbs, foods and nutrients. She began her herbal education at Northeast School of Botanical Medicine in Ithaca, and went on to receive her Masters of Science in Herbal Medicine from the Maryland University of Integrative Health. Over the course of her career she has served as a consultant for various organizations, including the Ceres Project, Sonoma County Indian Health Services and Premier Nutrition Labs. Since 2006, she has been sharing her knowledge and passion for herbal medicine as a core faculty member at CSHS.
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jason millerLarkin Morgan
Larkin’s experience is rooted in Western herbal therapeutics with an emphasis on plants local to Sonoma County. She has studied, taught, made medicine and held a clinical practice over the last 15 years. Larkin’s passion is education and empowerment. It is her joy to introduce people to the abundance of useful plants that are always under foot.
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Shad ReinsteinShad Reinstein
chinese medicine practitioner

I recently moved to Sebastopol and am excited to be working at CSHS. I am looking forward to combining my knowledge of Western Herbs with my experience as a Chinese Medicine Practitioner. I started studying and growing Western herbs in the 1970’s in Upstate N.Y. Then in the late 1980’s I became one of the early licensed acupuncturists in Washington State. I have been teaching Chinese Medicine at Bastyr University and NW Institute of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine for about 15 years. I now practice Chinese Medicine by incorporating Sound Healing with the principles of Chinese Medicine. back to top>

Karyn SandersKaryn Sanders
clinical herbalist

Karyn has been working with plants for most of her life. She was first trained in Native American traditional plant medicine. In her mid-teens she apprenticed with a Mexican curandera and has subsequently studied with various traditional teachers as well as Western herbalists. Karyn has been teaching and practicing herbal medicine from an energetic perspective for over 32 years and is co-founder of Blue Otter School of Herbal Medicine. Karyn has a live radio show, The Herbal Highway, that has aired weekly since 1996 on KPFA, 94.1FM out of Berkeley, California, on Thursdays from 1 to 2pm. back to top>

Becka SheranianBecka Sheranian
Becka is an herbalist and retired homebirth midwife who has been sharing her knowledge of birth & plants for the last 40 years. She is the founder of Blessingway Herbals (formerly known as Blessingway School of Midwifery & Herbs), which started in Humboldt county and is now based in Sonoma county. Her classes provide practical, how-to information focused on midwifery skills and herbs for women’s health, pregnancy & birth, newborn care, child & family well being, and native foods & medicines. She teaches classes in Sonoma County and offers free natural childbirth consultations.

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Kara SiglerKara Sigler
Western clinical herbalist

Kara Sigler has been seeing herbal clients in the San Francisco Bay Area of CA since 2006, and bodywork clients since 2012. She co-taught a three year clinical program at the Ohlone Herbal Center from 2006-2014. Kara currently leads herb walks, wildcrafting trips, and workshops at multiple venues around the Bay Area, from Forestville to Oakland. Kara has held a WFR certification since 2005 and works in the First Aid tent at the Northern California Women’s Herbal Symposium. She makes individualized herb formulas for clients in her apothecary, and has a line of herbal products Herban Elixirs. Kara incorporates Ayurvedic pulse and tongue assessment into her sessions with clients, as well as bodywork, nutritional consulting, and emotional/energetic counseling. Kara’s interests have focused on women, queer and trans health as well as affirming that life transitions are hard for humans and that plants are amazing allies along the way. Please visit Kara’s website
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christa sinadinosChrista Sinadinos
clinical herbalist

Christa is the director of the Northwest School for Botanical Studies. She has cultivated many herbalists through the two-phase professional and clinical herbalist training programs. She has practiced herbal medicine since 1994 and has studied herbs since 1989. Christa is the proprietor of the herbal extract business Alpine Meadow Botanicals. She maintains a demonstration garden containing more than 200 species of medicinal herbs. back to top

Dr. Curtis TurchinDr. Curtis Turchin
Dr. Curtis Turchin has studied the work of many prominent herbalists. Most recently he has been influenced by the work of Stephen Buhner, one of the recognized experts on Lyme disease. He is well acquainted with the most common herbal approaches include Stephen Buhner, Chinese herbal medicine, the Cowden and Byron White herbal protocols. He is a doctor of chiropractic who is considered one of the experts in the field of lasers for the treatment of acute and chronic pain. He has published 3 books, more than 25 journal articles, and has been extensively interviewed on radio and television. Dr. Turchin has taught therapists and doctors in the U.S., Europe, Japan, Canada, Brazil, and Guatemala. He has a bachelor’s degree in pre-medical studies and psychology from the University of Southern California, a master’s degree in education from San Francisco State University, and a doctor of chiropractic from Palmer College. He is in private practice in Sebastopol, CA. Partner Earth Education Center or Plant Spirit Healing.
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tamara wilderTamara Wilder
traditional skills educator

Tamara has taught and demonstrated traditional skills in California including the California Academy of Science in San Francisco, Oregon, Arizona and Idaho. The work of Tamara Wilder and Steven Edholm has been published in the Bulletin of Primitive Technology, in Woodsmoke: Collected Writings on Ancient Living Skills, and in their book Buckskin: The Ancient Art of Braintanning. back to top>

other guest teachers in recent years have included:
Rosemary Gladstar, Matthew Wood, Merrilee Wisewoman & others...

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