Year Round NH Team
|Misha Golfman, Founding Director |
MISHA GOLFMAN, M.Ed. co-founded Kroka Expeditions in 1996. He graduated from the Soviet National Outdoor Leadership School and earned degrees from Leningrad Politechnical and Pedagogical Universities, Plymouth State College and M.Ed. from Antioch, NE Graduate School. As a child he spent every summer expeditioning on long Russian waterways with his mother, while foraging and fishing. Misha participated and led many expeditions including several in the Russian and Canadian Arctic. He founded several initiatives, including the Russian American Outdoor Educators Exchange, Adventures in Russia and Piermont Outdoor Program. Misha was a guide for Mahoosuc Guide Service for 15 years and Outward Bound for 3 years. He also was a public school and college teacher for 10 years.
|Leah Lamdin, Summer Programs Coordinator
LEAH LAMDIN grew up in Pelham, MA where she developed her love for the outdoors at a young age. She participated in outdoor adventure trips with the Hulbert Outdoor Center and Chewonki Foundation as a teenager, and later followed her passion to complete a NOLS semester in New Zealand in 2007. She taught at the Morse Hill Outdoor Education Center in Shutesbury, MA for seven summers, and is now excited to have joined the Kroka community. Leah received her Bachelor’s degree in Global Studies from Warren Wilson College in Asheville, NC, after which she lived in Louisville, KY for a year before moving to NH. Leah especially enjoys being by water, swimming, hiking, and enjoying beautiful meals.
|Nathan Lyczak, Systems Manager|
NATHAN LYCZAK is Kroka’s systems manager. He is responsible for financial management and organizational systems development as well as providing administrative support and training for all of the staff. He brings to Kroka 15 years experience in non-profit management, and youth development and holds a masters degree in Education from Harvard University. While not at Kroka, Nathan lives in Keene with lovely wife Hanah and two children Meg and Rye.
|Lynne Boudreau, Farm Educator
LYNNE, M.Ed. graduated from UMass, Amherst and Leslie College with degrees in Education and Creative Arts. Prior to founding Kroka, Lynne taught as a Special Education Teacher, Public School Classroom teacher and Waldorf Nursery Kindergarten teacher. Lynne also worked as a ski guide at Mahoosuc Guide Service. Lynne brings to Kroka a wealth of teaching and life experience combined with a deep understanding of child development and an unsurpassed compassion for all beings. Besides running Kroka and raising a family Lynne manages Kroka’s “Happy Hens” Chicken Farm.
|Linda Fuerderer, Office Manager
LINDA FUERDERER is our amazing Office Manager/Administrator and she always steps up to do many other tasks. Until the sale in 2007, she worked along side her family in the family business, Jack’s True Value Hardware in Keene, New Hampshire. While working in the family business, she received a Bachelor’s Degree at Keene State College. Here she deepened her passion for archaeology. Linda has participated on many digs and regularly volunteers with the New Hampshire SCRAP program (State Conservation and Rescue Archaeology Program). She is a resident of Marlow and sits on the conservation commission as well as ARLAC (Ashuelot River Local Advisory Commission).
|Hanah LaBarre, Food Manager|
HANAH LABARRE was born in a country below sea level, learned to play on the flanks of the Himalayas, carve out fortresses in English and New English thickets and, after a detour in the jungles of New Jersey, set out running on The Great Plains. She gained full height and began growing her roots in the fertile Finger-Lakes region of New York State, sailing the mighty Hudson River and rambling deep shale ravines. Reed College pulled her west, but she pushed east again (on her trusty bike) to study eclectically at Cornell while honing expedition skills. She commenced to working with Longacre Expeditions, The Chewonki Foundation and The Shackleton School. After earning her M.Ed. at Lesley University, she embarked on a decade of teaching middle school sciences in beautiful Vermont. Now Hanah can be found nourishing or being nourished by the amazing community of Kroka or tending her small garden and family in Keene, New Hampshire.
|Raina Gardner, School Programs Coordinator
RAINA has spent most of her life in Vermont and New Hampshire. Her first experience at Kroka was at the age of 13. She has since participated in many Kroka programs including the New Hampshire / Ecuador Semester. She has studied jewelry and metal smithing, as well as other forms of art. Raina recently completed the 2012 New Hampshire / Ecuador Semester as a teachers assistant. She enjoys sharing her love of nature, crafts, and outdoor adventure with children of all ages.
|Emily Hughes, Outreach Coordinator
EMILY HUGHES gets to spend everyday making sure that all those wanting to come to Kroka and give to Kroka get the opportunities to do so. Her masters degrees in Nonprofit Management (SU) and Environmental Studies (SUNY-ESF) along with years of experience in environmental education have prepared her for both organizational and backcountry adventures. She is excited to call 1292 Forest Rd. her new home with partner/custom bike weelder, Joe, and dog, Journey. Outdoors, she enjoys exploring the peaks of the Northeast and indoors, she loves sharing a bowl of kettlecorn over a game of Carcassonne.
Year Round Ecuador Team
|Michael Dammer, NH-Ecuador Semester Coordinator
Co-director of Nahual Expediciones, MICHAEL DAMMER was born and raised among crops, cows, horses, and wise indigenous people surrounded by the Andes Mountains and studied at San Francisco, EC and Thompson River, Canada. Climber, builder, professional guide, and farmer Michael now lives at Palugo Farm with his life partner Marcela. When not pulling his brothers out of crevasses and waterfalls, Michael coordinates the Ecuador Semester and teaches earth sciences.
|Marcela Restrepo, Ecuador School Program Coordinator
Coordinator of Ecuador School Programs, MARCELA RESTREPO was born in Colombia, and studied at Canterbury in New Zealand and in Ecuador. A devoted student of experiential education, Marcela loves to dive deep into educational philosophies including Steiner, Pestalozzi, and Jesper Juul. As part of Nahual, she is a permanent resident of Palugo Farm, where she lives with her partner Michael, helps with the CSA, runs an artesian cheese making operation, and co-directs Pata Llucha theater company. Marcela teaches Spanish and theatre in addition to co-leading and supporting Kroka's NH-Ecuador Semester.
|Mathias Dammer, Senior Lead Teacher
MATHIAS was born and raised at Palugo, a small permaculture farm in the core of the Andes mountains, where he learned to love nature and the outdoors. As an adult, he went to Canada and completed several outdoor education and guiding programs, achieving several certification as a WFR, Rafting guide, CAA avalanche Technician and in Search and Rescue. Mathias loves the mountain and became a very passionate climber and mountaineer. He works at home as a mountain guide through Nahual and joined Kroka many years ago, working as a lead teacher in summer programs and Ecuador NH Semester. Mathias and his brothers cofounded Nahual Expediciones, Kroka's partner school in Ecuador.
Accomplished climber, Galapagos guide, herbologist, and mother, NICOLE MARCHAN has a deep respect and knowledge of Andean nature, people, and traditional ways. She teaches yoga and studies the magical healing properties of herbs, all while raising daughter Ayra. Nicole, Mathias and Ayra live in a hand-made dwelling at Palugo Farm..
|Thomas Dammer, Senior Lead Teacher
Senior Lead Teacher THOMAS DAMMER (BS San Francisco, EC.) was born and raised on horseback at Palugo Farm. Through wrestling his brothers, roping horses, climbing trees, hunting, shooting bows, and racing wooden boats, he developed an understanding of community and a love for nature. He has an independent personality and a great talent for different sports; he is a passionate paddler, climber, biker, and an overall adventurer. He has done much traveling and has dedicated a great deal of his life to being outdoors, guiding, and working with young people in nature. The practice of permaculture encompasses much of his interests, with a focus on bio-construction. He, partner Marcea, and daughter Naya are live at Palugo in their hand built adobe house at Palugo Farm.
MARCEA MACINNIS (BA, Marlboro) is a native Vermonter. Growing up immersed in nature, she developed an understanding of the beauty, forms, and cycles of the living Earth. She decided to follow the routes of the migratory birds as she learned through traveling, and developed her expression through crafts, music, and art. She landed in Ecuador to make her nest, where she spends much of her time making potions to heal people. She has worked at Kroka for 7 years, teaching students the beauty of nature through leaves, flowers, and roots, both as a teacher during the summer and for the Ecuador Semester.
MARGA comes to us all the way from Cuenca, Ecuador to share with us her amazing talents on the cliff face and in the kitchen. She is one of the top climbers in South America, and is always looking to share her knowledge. She has under her belt some of the highest peaks and the toughest climbs in South America, as well as degrees in History, Geography, French and Nutrition & Food Technology.. Back home in Ecuador, she works as the trainer of state sport climbing team and runs Nectar de la Delicia, her one-woman company that manufactures natural food products.
DAVICHO was born in Colombia and now lives in Cojitambo, Ecuador, where he is building his house. At the age of twelve, he earned enough money selling hot dogs on the street to buy his first pair of climbing shoes. He has gone on to become a professional mountaineering guide as a member of the Asosacion de Guias de Alta Montaña of both Ecuador and Bolivia. In Ecuador, he works as a high-altitude mountaineering guide for Nahual Expediciones. First and formemost, he is the father of a beautiful daughter, Violetta, who is the light of his life.
|Jamie Coulter, Senior Lead Teacher
JAMIE COULTER has worked at Kroka since the year 2000. He also has Waldorf class teacher certification from Antioch University, is a capoeira angola teacher (Afro-Brazilian dance/fight/game), and a yoga teacher trained at the Himalayan Institute for Yoga Science and Philosophy. He has worked on small organic farms in Vermont, on wheat farms in Oklahoma, and did inspection work for the Northeast Organic Farming Association. He has worked with 'at risk' youth in residential settings, school settings and outdoors. He has been a restaurant manager, waiter, and cook in Greenwich Village, NYC, and went to cooking school. As a teenager he went to Interlochen Arts Academy, a fine and performing arts high school and has performed in many plays. Originally from Minneapolis, he and his wife Tonya have three children and live in Harlemville, NY
HELEN D'ANGELO grew up in the city of Worcester, MA. Prior to attending college she has worked with youth at both Heifer Project International's Educational Learning Center at Overlook Farm in Rutland, MA and the Rowe Camp and Conference Center in Rowe, MA. Helen received her BFA from MA College of Art and Design, focusing on weaving and functional ceramics. Since then she has worked on several farms, and apprenticed with a production potter. Most recently she has lived in the urban wilderness of Boston, involved in the ‘freegan’/re-purposing/recycling movement harvesting urban wild edibles from the bounty of the urban dumpster. She hopes to be an agent for change in the educational system.
RAPHAEL ZARA the Great, a Scorpio, enjoys winter sports like snow boarding, x-country skiing, tubing, and skydiving on the moon. After extensive travels around the world, he stumbled upon the hobbit holes of Kroka where he continues to inspire people of all ages with games, story telling, music, and outdoor adventure. His Russian-Romanian-Mexican-American-Jewish roots bloom in this adverse environment to bring out the best in everyone. His main interests are swimming and hiking, and was recently promoted to the position of Chief Geese Wrangler at the Kroka pond.
LISL, M.Ed. was born and raised in a small village in the Austrian Alps in the family of a forest ranger and teacher. She climbed, backcountry skied, and hiked extensively. Lisl has been a teacher all of her adult life, having taught elementary as well as high school grades. After moving to the United States in 1985 she studied at the Rudolf Steiner College in California. For 13 years she taught at the Kimberton Waldorf School in Pennsylvania, where she carried the Movement and Outdoor Education Department. Lisl devoted seven years of her life as director of Kroka's semester programs, building Vermont and Ecuador semesters, and mentoring hundreds of young adults through life-changing experiences. We are grateful that she continues to serve Kroka as a guest teacher and mentor. Her son Stefan is an alumnus of VSP ’04 and has taught many programs at Kroka.
|Hans Mayer, Lead Teacher|
HANS MAYER is an alumni of the Semester Program and has been part of the Kroka family for many years. Hans is from Starksboro, Vermont. He spent his youth immersed in the natural world -- tracking, hunting, fishing, wilderness camping and organic farming -- and has a great reverence for nature and love of outdoor pursuits. Hans spent the 2011-2012 school year studying in New Zealand and now lives nearby in Acworth, NH.
|Laurel Iselin, Lead Teacher|
LAUREL ISELIN first came to Kroka for her 8th grade class trip. She has since participated in many advanced expeditions, including those in Canada and Ecuador. For her senior class project Laurel studied about traditional lodge building with Cree Natives in Canada and then guided Kroka students in the process of building our Cree lodge alongside Grandfather Ray Reitze. Laurel attended Waldorf School through grade twelve. She completed a year of study at Fosen Folk School in Norway and spent another year traveling by bicycle in South America. Laurel completed a foundation year in painting at Harlemville Free Columbia School in New York where she built yet another Cree lodge, and is now living in Acworth, NH. She is an incredible fiddle player who also enjoys circus arts and horses.
EMILY TURNER was born and raised in the town of Starksboro, VT. She first came to Kroka at the age of 11 and has been a devoted Kroka-ite ever since. She completed the 2004 Vermont Semester and was the first ever Kroka Apprentice. She then took time to study at Fosen Folk School in Norway, where she lived for three years shoveling manure, sailing boats, and strapping her skis to her bicycle so she was always prepared. Her time abroad continued for another three years spent living outside of London studying theater, and exploring Europe as a traveling milk maid. In 2011 Emily rejoined the full-time Kroka community as the School Programs Coordinator and in 2013 led the Vermont Semester.
OWEN CUNNANE, originally from Maine, has always been mesmerized by fire. He has lived by an active volcano in Hawaii and worked extinguishing forest fires in Maine and Canada. This spring, the flame of Kroka caught his eye and he now spends his days with fire more peacefully cooking and spending time with students and friends, and at night he can be found reading by candlelight. His passion for life and the outdoors is strong, and he shares this with all he meets.
TRINA hails from Keene, New Hampshire, where her education at the Monadnock Waldorf School and the Putney School awoke in her a deep passion for many mediums of art. After experiencing the New Hampshire-Ecuador Semester as a student in 2009, Trina decided to come back to teach at Kroka in the summers. Trina’s love of exploration and adventure has led her on many journeys, most recently to Ireland, where she spent four months traveling the coast by bicycle. Trina now attend the Rode Island School of Design.
ELIOT WITTEN grew up in an intentional co-housing community in Western Massachusetts. He grew up going to Night Eagle Wilderness Adventures, and has moved through the ranks at Kroka, from summer to semester student, and then apprentice to summer staff member. He especially enjoys fishing, camping, singing and canoing.
TOM ROSENBERG is an alum of the 2006 NH/VT Semester where he met his wife, Lily. Tom has been leading trips for Kroka ever since.
LILY FREY is an alum of the 2006 NH/VT Semester where she met her husband, Tom. She has been a devoted leader for Kroka here in NH as well as from her family's vineyard in California.