Board of Directors
Our Board of Directors:
Our Board of Directors bring a diverse array of professional and personal experiences to their roles of service, as well as a shared commitment to advancing the local good food movement, one small farm at a time. Their skills and passion are instrumental in helping us grow food, farmers, and community. Meet the EarthDance Board Members!
Chair: Steve Owens
Treasurer: Chris Fava
Secretary: Dr. Clarice Hutchens
Member-at-Large: Steve Lawler
Member-at-Large: Jill Duncan
Member-at-Large: Jason Asher
Member-at-Large: Jack Davis
Member-at-Large: Dwayne Ingram
Member-at-Large: Audrey Woita
Member-at-Large: Lisa Eilermann
Member-at-Large: Dr. Mary Saltarelli
Member-at-Large: Penny Struebig
Member-at-Large: Keegan Kimbrough
Member-at-Large: Ian Watkins
Retired Alliance Manager- Nestle Purina Petcare
Steve Owens’ engagement with EarthDance is inspired by the fact that the organization acts in the spirit of “think globally, act locally” by building a local community committed to healthy organic food and training future organic farmers, which fosters values of voluntary cooperation, stewardship, and personal responsibility.
He has degrees in chemistry and decision sciences (application of quantitative methods to business problems) as well as training and experience in project management (PMP Certification) and alliance management (CA-AM Certification).
Steve is committed to organizations including the Project Management Institute, Association of Strategic Alliance Professionals, Crossroads College Prep School, where his grandson is a student, and Urban Harvest STL, in which his wife is also very active.
His greatest hope for EarthDance’s future is that the organization becomes a nationally recognized resource for organic farming best practices and developing a certified program for the education of organic farmers/gardeners.
Owner-Fava Financial Solutions, LLC (Business Consulting and CFO for Hire)
Chris Fava’s engagement with EarthDance is inspired by the organization’s educational mission and the open, hands-on experience it provides to anyone who wants to be an organic farmer, as well as the organization’s financially self-sustaining model, achieved through both farmers market and restaurant sales and the CSA Program.
He is a Missouri-licensed CPA and brings 35 years of public accounting, finance, real estate and construction experience in his role as a board member. He graduated from St. Louis University with a BSBA Accounting Major and has served on several non-for- profit boards in the past.
Chris is fully committed to the EarthDance board, the only one on which he currently serves. He has been the President of the SLUH Alumni Board, Chairman of the Our Lady of Pillar Finance Committee, member of the St. Joseph Academy Finance Board, Cub Scout Master and Boy Scout Leader, Girl Scout Troop Leader, little league coach and President of the Trustee of Subdivision.
His hope is that EarthDance becomes further financially self sustaining through tuition income, sales of crops, grants and major donations. He would like to see EarthDance transform the current farm into the campus that is planned with all of the buildings needed to fully achieve its long term goals.
Director, Global Regulatory, Biologics R&D at Pfizer and CEO of Replenishing the Earth – Pfizer
Independent Business Owner – Replenishing the Earth
Clarice Hutchens’ engagement with EarthDance is inspired by the passion around local, organic food and sustainability in general.
She brings strengths in programming, writing, and research, particularly research in developing EarthDance as a thought leader in the sustainability community, and is committed to organizations including Refab, the Boy Scouts of America, and Mission and Youth Committees at St. Marks Presbyterian Church.
Her hope for EarthDance is that the organization be a model local farm for urban residents and future farmers and serve as a community center for people to gather and have support in learning not only sustainable farming skills, but also sustainable skills related to buildings, transportation, and social sustainability. She hopes that EarthDance will increase its role as a thought leader in the community through proactive engagement in research and collaboration with partners doing related research.
Priest, Professor, Psychologist – St. Stephens Episcopal
Steve Lawler works with individuals and groups to achieve sustainable results. He has lead planning processes for the boards of St Louis Earth Day, USGBC – Gateway Chapter, COCA and Episcopal City Mission of Boston among others. He serves as an Executive Coach to leaders of both business and not for profit organizations. As Managing Director of Opinions Incorporated, a global full-service opinion research organization his current clients include The Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, Oetker Hotel Management GmbH and IMCA.
Steve holds graduate degrees from Yale University and the Olin School of Business at Washington University. He received his certification as an OD consultant from NTL.
He teaches sustainability and leadership courses and is Coordinator of Business Studies for University College at Washington University in St Louis. He serves as Rector of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Ferguson. He is a co-founder of EcoFaith Meet-up St. Louis.
Independent Business Owner, Licensed Massage Therapist, Thai Massage Therapist, Yoga Teacher and Personal Wellness Chef – Wellness by Jill
Jill Duncan’s engagement with EarthDance is inspired by the global idea of reconnecting people with the planet through the food the earth provides us; the nationwide movement of teaching young and old to farm organically as an alternative to the corporate farming structure; the local community’s health and desire to know where their food comes from. Most importantly, she is inspired by the way that food connects us to each other!
Jill sees her role as a “connector”: she creates people-to-people connections to inspire relationships to motivate the community’s growth and involvement in each other’s lives. She has worked in the food and marketing industry for many years where healthy food, organics and local food sources are the pillars of success. She brings firsthand farming experience and knowledge, through her extensive travels serving as a volunteer on organic farms and vineyards all over the world, maintaining her home garden, and operating a wellness business that thrives on treating the body, mind and spirit with holistic care for long term health and day to day radiance!
Jill’s hope is that EarthDance continues to Celebrate the Culture in Agriculture, bringing together people of all races, cultures, interests and economic status and inspiring people to love the earth, healthy food, community connection and down-home simplicity in life. She hopes that EarthDance serves as a model for people that want to live a life rooted in the dirt that sustains and the smiles that inspire. Jill looks forward to the continual growth of the infrastructure on the farm so that it can serve, teach and inspire a community effort to love life, the harvest’s bounty and the roots that connect people’s hearts.
Independent Business Owner – Connie’s Green Grocery
Jason Asher’s engagement with EarthDance is inspired by his desire to connect with like-minded organizations increasing access to affordable organic, seasonal produce. As founder and owner of Connie’s Green Grocery, he brings expert career experience (and “savvy”) in business operations and management at one of the places very literally leading our local good food movement.
His hope for EarthDance is that it serves as an educational resource for even more individuals and organizations, including both those interested in organic food production and those who are interested, but don’t know where to learn more and who to reach out to.
Independent Business Owner – JDS Management LLC
Jack Davis’s engagement with EarthDance is inspired by his work in advancing sustainable practices within the commercial real estate industry. In addition, his interest in food and farming seeded at an early age; Jack grew up in rural St. Charles, having forged friendships with his farmer neighbors. His passion for community service runs deep: An original partner in St. Louis Composting, he is now self-employed. Jack brings commercial real estate experience, as well as service with numerous organizations, including Big Brothers/Big Sisters, the Central West End Neighborhood Association, and the Cystic Fibrosis Association, for which he was the Board Chair.
His hope is that, in the future, EarthDance supplies a blueprint for organizations, communities, families, and individuals who hope to incorporate sustainable practices into their business operations (regarding land development, in particular), neighborhoods, and lives.
Patient Advocacy Coordinator – St. Louis Children’s Hospital
Dwayne Ingram meets with patients and families to ensure they’re receiving a superior patient experience. His radiant smile and calm, caring words bring comfort and joy to staff and families. He brings the same approach to his hometown, Ferguson.
The tragic events there in August 2014 — a shooting, protests, looting and vandalism — drew international attention. Dwayne believes everyone can learn from what happened. He feels Ferguson is becoming a better, stronger and more unified community, and other communities can become better as well by helping people of all backgrounds.
Former Instructional Designer and Project Manager – BJC HealthCare
Audrey Richards Woita’s connection to EarthDance began in 2015 as an Apprentice. Raised on a farm in Nebraska, she was interested in learning how to farm organically. Molly, Monica and Matt showed her more than this…they showed how the tender care for the earth is the most important aspect of farming.
With her background in teaching, project management and instructional design, Audrey sees the viability of EarthDance to educate and engage people to grow and enjoy real food. Personally, she is working with a Clayton business to develop an urban farm where real people can learn to grow real food. As a tool to transform the health of the community one person at a time, this project is structured to provide medicare patients with education, physical exercise and access to real food.
Audrey is involved with her local public school garden, Food Roof in downtown St Louis and the Central West End Church. Her desire is for EarthDance to gain greater awareness locally. Audrey has been involved in CSAs and will provide support for the EarthDance CSA program this year as a sophomore apprentice. Helping with harvest, supporting EarthDance’s social media outlets as well as writing the weekly CSA newsletter will be her efforts to garner more attention to this fabulous gem tucked away on Dade Avenue.
Audrey has a bachelors degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of Nebraska, and a masters degree in Instructional Design from the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.
Family Manager and Philanthropist
Lisa Eilermann was brought to EarthDance in the summer of 2015 when a friend introduced her because her love of farming. She instantly knew it was the perfect next step to increase her knowledge and love of farming while also being able to serve the community. Lisa grew up gardening with her grandparents in rural Missouri. Currently, she and her family have a vineyard and farm in Cuba, MO, a large garden, and chickens!
Lisa graduated with a BS in marketing and a minor in management from Missouri State University. She is married with three kids and has spent a large amount of time volunteering at Chaminade, Visitation, and Whitfield. She also has been involved in an after school program at De La Salle Middle School, and was a member of their “Catch a Rising Star” committee. She currently works as Secretary for a women’s investment club, Femmes Fund.
She is excited to be involved in EarthDance and bring her knowledge of marketing, event planning, organization, and love of organic farming. She hopes to help EarthDance become a recognized name in the Saint Louis area and is excited to be on Board to help EarthDance achieve their goals.
Dr. Mary Saltarelli earned a PhD in Biochemistry at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine with her thesis project on molecular characterization of the caprine arthritis encephalitis virus. She completed two post-doctoral fellowships studying HIV transcriptional regulation in patient blood specimens. Her first employment was as an Assistant Professor at Morehouse School of Medicine where she continued HIV research and taught Virology. For the last 20 years, she has worked in Pharmaceutical Drug Development first at Pfizer in Groton CT and then at Abbott/AbbVie in IL, studying biomarkers of response to novel therapeutics. Presently, her work is focused on understand the mechanisms of action of new treatments for immunological and neurological disorders. She is married to Dr. Mario Saltarelli and has two adult children, Stephen and Kathleen who share her passion for all the good that EarthDance represents.
Administrative Assistant – Emerson
Penny Struebig has lived in the St. Louis area since 1984 and has worked for Emerson, headquartered in Ferguson, over 20 years. She volunteers for many of the organizations Emerson sponsors such as United Way, Junior Achievement, KidSmart and the Salvation Army.
Previously, Penny was actively involved in the Midwest Salute to the Arts in Fairview Heights, Illinois. She served as their Director for many years.
She is married to her husband, Eric and they have one grown son, Ian. Penny holds a degree in Business Administration from University of Central Missouri. She brings to the Board her enthusiasm and willingness to help make Earth Dance grow to become the best it can be.
Tax Accountant – Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
SVP and Chief Human Resources Officer – Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals
Ian Watkins has executive responsibility for organizational development, effectiveness and sustainability, talent acquisition, total rewards, and human resources systems and service delivery. He is also responsible for supporting the board of directors in their governance activities related to executive compensation, talent and succession management.
Ian has more than 30 years of international human resources experience, including more than 20 years within the healthcare industry. He also has significant experience working with boards of directors for public companies.
Prior to joining Mallinckrodt, he served as vice president, global human resources at Synthes, Inc., and senior vice president, human resources at Andrx Corporation, which is now part of Actavis, Inc. In addition to these roles, Mr. Watkins held positions of increasing responsibility at Bausch & Lomb, including heading human resources at Ericsson Inc., and Marconi Command and Control Systems.
Ian holds a Higher National Certificate (HNC) in business and finance and a diploma in human resources management through the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) attained at Farnborough College of Technology in the United Kingdom. He also holds an MBA from the Roffey Park Management Institute/University of Sussex in the United Kingdom.
Chief Human Resources Officer
To find out more information about becoming a Board Member for EarthDance, please contact Molly Rockamann.