Biographies of Kū ‘Āina Pā Educational Team
|Elizabeth (Betsy) Cole is the Deputy Director of The Kohala Center (TKC). With over 40 years of experience in educational program development, nonprofit administration, and community economic development, she is currently responsible for The Kohala Center’s program design and implementation, project oversight, and evaluation. She has taught and designed curricula at the secondary and college levels, holds a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania, and M.A.T. and Ed.D. degrees from Harvard University Graduate School of Education. She has lived and worked in rural Hawai‘i for the past 30 years.|
|Nancy Redfeather is Program Director for the Hawai‘i Island School Garden Network (http://kohalacenter.org/hisgn/about/) and a member of the Hawai‘i Farm to School/School Garden Hui, the statewide group helping to guide this work. She has been a science specialist, class teacher and garden educator for the past 40 years working in both public and private schools. She is also Coordinator for the Hawai‘i Public Seed Initiative (http://kohalacenter.org/hpsi/) helping to renew seed production and preserve biodiversity of locally grown crops. She has been active in many initiatives regarding agriculture across the state for the past 12 years. She lives at Kawanui Farm in Honalo, with her husband Gerry Herbert working to create sustainable food systems for her family and community. She has lived and worked in Kona for the past 35 years.|
|Amanda Rieux (right) and Koh Ming Wei (left)|
|Amanda trained in Ecological Horticulture at the University of California Santa Cruz. She has studied sustainable agricultural systems across the U.S., as well as in Cuba, Afghanistan, and Vietnam. After working as a garden teacher for several years in Alice Waters’ Edible School Yard in Berkeley, CA, Amanda was invited to Hawaiʻi Island in 2005 to design and implement the program and garden for Mālaʻai: The Culinary Garden of Waimea Middle School. After 7 years the garden and program have grown to serve all of the students in the school as well as the Waimea community. To date over 1,700 students have participated in Mālaʻai.
Koh Ming Wei who has a PhD. in Sustainability Education, is an educational consultant, curriculum developer, grant writer, public speaker, and organizer. She trains educators to integrate education for sustainability standards and ecological principles as well as Department or Ministry of Education standards into classroom curriculum, professional development courses, and community outreach programs. Ming Wei is also the Ecoliteracy Specialist at Pacific Resources for Education and Learning (PREL) where she develops climate change education projects, teacher trainings, and curriculum for use in the Pacific Region. Her dissertation, Discovering learning, discovering self: The effects of an interdisciplinary, standards-based school garden curriculum on elementary students in Hawai‘i, is a useful reference for those interested in developing school learning gardens. Her research includes how the school learning garden experience is a context conducive to teaching core subjects, STEM, and foundational life skills, and has created the Pedagogy of Food to frame the kind of education she believes in and shares. Widely traveled, Ming Wei is interested in how different cultures and indigenous communities work with nature to resolve ecological and social challenges through community partnerships, agriculture, music and arts, and place-based education.
|Jan Ray (B.S., M.A., Ed.D.) is an Assistant Professor of Education in the School of Education and College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo. She has worked in the field of education for over 40 years. In addition to teaching at universities such as University of Mississippi and West Texas A&M University, Jan has served as a classroom teacher for first- through fifth-grade students, as well as a teacher of students with hearing impairments (EC-8), a speech and language pathologist (EC-12), and an assistant principal at the elementary school level. As an instructional designer, she has authored 15 books for classroom teachers and their students. As an academic researcher, she has presented over 120 papers at educational conferences and published over 30 research articles in professional journals and proceedings. Jan lives in Kea‘au, Hawai‘i with her husband, Bob Ray, where she tends to their trees (avocado, mango, lychee, rambutan, mac nut, banana, papaya, loquat, lemon, lime, fig, plum, orange, star fruit, mulberry, grapefruit, ice cream bean, and more) and enjoys organic gardening in the rainforest environment of Hawai‘i Island.|