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Board of Directors

Tracy Williams (Secretary) is Principal of W.G.Mallett School in Farmington. She's a curious person with a variety of interests; writing, reading, gardening, crafts, and outdoor woods and water excursions. For forty-one years Tracy has worked in education in roles ranging from elementary teaching to adjunct graduate instruction in Literacy, and mentoring new principals. Since 2005 she has been at Mallett, puzzling over how to foster a strong and positive learning trajectory for students, particularly those who come to school having already experienced trauma and disengagement. The school’s relationship with Maine Local Living School continues to inform Tracy of what else might be possible in public education.

Lēza Packard (President) is the founder and Head of School of the Ecology Learning Center, a public charter school in Unity, Maine. She began teaching over 20 years ago with Teach for America. That experience sparked a passion to expand and enhance learning opportunities for youth wherever she has lived. Lēza completed her bachelor’s at University of California at Davis and master’s in environmental education at Prescott College in Arizona. She has taught every grade from preschool to college, in a range of subjects from middle school science to high school French & Spanish. Most recently she was the director of the Outdoor Classroom at Chewonki and education director at Morris Farm in Wiscasset.

Erica Luce DiSilvestro (Treasurer) is a second grade teacher at Kingfield Elementary School. She received her undergraduate degree in education with a concentration in social sciences from Castleton University in Vermont. Erica’s passion is helping young learners discover themselves in the place that they live in. She is the lead coordinator of the second through fourth grade outdoor learning program. She also co-creates and implements the PLACE (Personal Learning And Community Engagement) Time Curriculum at Kingfield Elementary. Outside of her work, Erica loves the forest and rivers. She is a Ski Patroller at Sugarloaf and a Whitewater Maine Guide. She spends much of her time outdoors exploring the place she loves with her two dogs and husband.

Grant Hawkes developed a fascination for wild spaces and old time skills early on growing up in Maine. He completed an apprenticeship at MLLS at the age of 15, and since then his love of natural places and the process of transforming natural materials has continued to grow. Grant has worked for various companies as a guide and trip leader, including Mahoosuc Guide Service and Kroka Expeditions. He is currently a senior studying Recreation Resource Management and Folklore within the Quinney College of Natural Resources at Utah State University. When not studying or wandering the nearby mountains, Grant can be found in his workshop, making spoons and turning bowls on a foot powered lathe.

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Dr. Andrew Barton is a forest and fire ecologist, science writer, environmentalist, and professor of biology at the University of Maine at Farmington. His current research takes him to the Arizona mountains to better understand forest recovery after wildfires in a warmer and drier world, as well as to the Sky Islands of southwest Texas and northern Mexico. Drew’s book, The Changing Nature of the Maine Woods, tells the story of how the forests of Maine have changed over the past 10,000 years and how they are changing today. He is also the co-author of Ecology and Recovery of Old-growth Forests in Eastern North America. Drew is also helping confront climate change through his work with the Governor’s Climate Council of Maine and the Ecological Reserve Program.

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