Meet the teachers that make this school possible.
Is the Facilitator for several of our student program series as well as Director of the Sassafras Moon Herbal Festival.
She has completed a variety of online herbal programs and is an Herbalist Lifestyle Program graduate. She has a lifelong herbal passion that stemmed from her first sip of herbal tea as a child.
Kat lives on a solar powered homestead on the edge of the Cherokee forest in Greene county where she cares for a variety of plants and animals.
Michelle grew up in middle Tennessee and was lucky enough to have a grandfather who led her on adventures such as wild mushroom hunting and making dandelion wine. The peach doesn’t fall far from the tree!
She founded HERBalachia in 2016, and as its Director, is in awe of the herbal community it has helped bring together in east Tennessee.
Michelle’s formal herbal studies include a doctorate in Chinese medicine from Daoist Traditions College of Chinese Medicine in Asheville, NC, where she served as herbal faculty and medicinal garden manager.
She maintains a private practice of acupuncture and herbal medicine in beautiful downtown Erwin, TN.
Dr. McDowell is a specialist in the plant family Rubiaceae and is a retired Professor of Eastern Tennessee State University (ETSU), where he taught plant biology, taxonomy (scientific naming and classification, and phylogeny (evolutionary relationships).
He served as curator of the John C. Warden Herbarium and as Director of the ETSU Arboretum.
His career included a year and a half with the Smithsonian Institution Museum of Natural History as a field botanist. A major project he accomplished was the digitization of the 20,000+ specimens in the ETSU Herbarium, in collaboration with the Tenneesse Network of Curators. He will be sharing his time teaching the fundamentals of Taxonomy and Morphology and we could not be more excited!
Julia Thie, L.Ac.
Julia has had a love affair with the plant world since childhood.
Master Gardener and formally trained in both eastern and western plant medicines, she brings her bio-medical knowledge and blends it with historical understanding.
Julia holds a Bachelor of Science in Human Performance from Southern Connecticut State University and a four-year Master’s Degree in Traditional Oriental Medicine from Yo San University in Los Angeles.
Retired from medical practice, Julia now offers clinical hypnotherapy and contemplation practices to bolster resiliency and radiance in mind and body. She shares her knowledge of herbal energetics and its practical application with HERBalalchia students with great delight!
Amanda River Fern Bryant
Amanda grew up under the arms of a great grandmother Live Oak in south Louisiana. Since then she has been enchanted by the magic and wonder of the plant nation. Amanda studied horticulture at the University of Georgia, massage at the Asheville School of Massage and Yoga, herbalism at Appalachian School of Holistic Herbalism, and natural spirituality from Rainbow Eagle and Sarah Bicknell. She continues to be a student and strongly believes that healing for ourselves and the earth comes with connection, gratitude, and love for the natural world. Amanda currently has a private practice as a licensed massage therapist and herbalist in Johnson City, TN.
Cindi is a traditional Herbalist, descendent of the Menominee Nation, and founder of Cindi’s Sacred Garden. She has been practicing Native American Traditions with our plant nation for most her life. Opening herself to being a Student with Nature, Cindi has learned “hands on” to identify many herbs during all growing seasons.
Cindi went into business full-time in 1997 and has included organic and natural mind and body products.
Cindi teaches about herbs, growing, connecting and to healing oneself. Cindi maintains her deep connection with her Native Nation, learning and sharing with Medicine people the plant knowledge that needs to maintain oral traditions.
Rodney Webb is a mushroom farmer who lives on a 3 generation family farm in Marshall, NC. He was introduced to the healing properties of shiitake mushrooms when they helped his wife recover from stage 3 Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 1997. They knew that growing shiitakes would become part of their future.
He has continued to study, cultivate and forage other medicinal mushrooms including oyster, reishi, chaga, and mukitake.
He is the owner of Appalachia Fungorum where he cultivates mushrooms as well as seasonal vegetables.
Rodney has conducted workshops on mushroom cultivation at the Organic Growers School, sells his mushrooms and farm crops at the Jonesborough farmers market, and sells through Madison Farms.
Marcy is a self-taught artist and writer living in Northeast Tennessee. She began practicing yoga in 2011, and it was through her yoga practice that she was introduced to Ayurveda, an ancient holistic healing system originating from India. It was in Ayurveda that Marcy found the marriage of all the things she is passionate about: yoga, meditation, herbal medicine, and healing. Most importantly, in Ayurveda she found an individual-focused healing tradition that emphasizes harmony with the natural world as being the key to overall wellness.
Marcy became a certified Ayurvedic Wellness Counselor at the Asheville School of Massage and Yoga. She has since continued her Ayurveda and Yoga practice working with individuals one-on-one.
Lori Collins Jenkins
Lori began her journey over a decade ago, creating herbal concoctions and magic in her kitchen for friends and families. She began her herbal studies attending local herbal classes and conferences but decided she wanted to dive deeper. She enrolled in Rosemary Gladstar’s The Science and Art of Herbalism course, which she finished in 2021. She is also a graduate of the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine’s Foraging Course. She has also taken One Willow Apothecary’s Intuitive Plant Medicine Course and currently enrolled in Anni Daulter’s Wyld Women group. As a traditional herbalist, she has made Appalachia her home. These old stones and plant spirits sing in her heart, and it is her hope that she can translate the wisdom of Appalachia into her medicine and food!