Instructor Bios

David Abeel, M.S., has been building wood furniture since the mid-1980s and began teaching in 2000. His goal is to make furniture making accessible to crafters, woodworkers, and chair lovers of all ages and skill levels.

Elizabeth Abeel, B.A., a batik artist since 1975, is a member of the Michigan Guild of Artists and Craftsmen, has won numerous awards for her work, and has taught for EES since 1995.

Charlene Allen, M.A.-textiles and clothing, has taught high school and college clothing construction and textile science, as well as the sociological and psychological aspects of clothing at Simmons College, Boston, MA. Most recently she has studied the current sustainable clothing movement which she believes will gain momentum.

Nancy Krcek Allen, a graduate of California Culinary Academy, has over 25 years experience in kitchens and classrooms. She has taught full-time at the Institute for Culinary Education in Manhattan and owned and operated City Kitchen in Traverse City. She recently published the text book Discovering Global Cuisine, available through Amazon.

Joedy Annis has formal training in tap, ballet, jazz, modern, and hip-hop. She danced professionally for three years, and has been teaching Hip Hop since 2002.

Kimberly Arbour Gingell, B.A., Leadership Grand Traverse graduate, and DISC certified, has been a Human Resource professional for over 25 years. She currently is the HR director for Dennis, Gartland & Niergarth and has presented to multiple organizations and non-profits including the TC Chamber, Benzie Chamber and CPAmerica.

Tania Arens has been studying Tae Kwon Do at NMC since 2007 and obtained the rand of 1st Degree Black Belt in 2015. She has taught under the guidance of NMC Tae Kwon Do instructors Robert Odette and Doug Mehl.

Tom Auch, B.S.-business, teaches Photoshop at NMC. He is a photographer for White Pine Press, and is on staff at the Center for Learning at NMC.

Yvette Babin-Ringsmuth, B.A.-linguistics/international business, worked for an international company, commuting regularly to Latin America and worked as a language training consultant for business executives.

Chava Bahle, M.A., is a Rabbi, writer, and instructor. She is Director of the Or Tzafon Retreat Center and an ordained Maggid (storyteller and inspirational preacher). She has taught religion courses at University of Michigan and NMC. She is a former organizational development consultant.

Bill Bailey taught math and science to high school students for 30 years. He has been a member of the Grand Traverse Sail and Power Squadron for 10 years. He is a past Commander of the Grand Traverse Bay Sail and Power Squadron and completed the Junior Navigation course which deals with finding your way at sea with a sextant.

Ed Bailey is Director of the Technical Academic Area at NMC. He has a mechanical engineering degree from MSU and has 20+ years’ experience in project management for commercial construction.

Steve Ballance, M.A., has been teaching art at NMC for over 40 years. In addition to originating the photography courses, he is a specialist in 2-D Design and critical thinking.

Lindy Barnes, B.A., M.Ed., is a retired elementary teacher. She has been knitting since she was 10 years old and has taught knitting to young and old alike.

Allison Beers, B.A., has planned national and international events since 1998. She currently is Events Manager for the Traverse City Film Festival and owner of Events North, a corporate and social management agency.

Margaret Bennett, CYT, RYT, B.A.-psychology, is a certified yoga instructor and therapist. She has taught yoga at NMC since 1997, is a Reiki Master, and has formal training in meditation traditions. She is director of Crooked Tree Yoga and Therapy in Acme.

Jim Bensley, M.L.S., is NMCs Director of International Services and Service Learning. He currently teaches Humanities and has planned and led student trips to multiple destinations in the US and the countries of Peru, Costa Rica, and Cuba. He has lived overseas and he attended school in the UK.

Jim Bertoldi, B.B.A.-accounting, has 20+ years of experience working in the area of public accounting and consulting.

Scott Birch is a graduate of the National Outdoor Leadership School, an experienced wilderness guide, and a former summer camp director. He is currently studying toward a degree in elementary education.

Jennifer Blakeslee is the chef/owner of The Cooks’ House on Front Street, specializing in local sustainable cuisine. She was formerly the sous chef at Andre’s French Restaurant in Las Vegas.

Mary Bridges, M.A., has taught technical writing, web content design, and research writing at National Louis University, Benedictine University, and College of DuPage. Her background as a newspaper columnist and features writer and her love of language and style inform her teaching.

Carol Brinks, M.A., has undergraduate majors in Spanish and Chinese. She teaches Spanish at Interlochen Arts Academy. Her language and culture background includes a semester in Honduras and another studying Chinese at the Technical Institute (Li Gong Dazue) in Beijing.

Pat Brumbaugh, A.B.D. in horn performance, M.M., was the Director of Bands at West Senior High for the past 13 years. Prior to her work in Traverse City, she taught at the University of Memphis and Arkansas University.

Carol Buckel, certified Raw Chef III Instructor, teaches a living foods lifestyle of natural health and nutrition.

Sara Budzik earned her A.A.S. in baking and patisserie from Le Cordon Bleu, Pittsburgh before working on the cake team at Patisserie Vanille in Chicago. Sara has taught baking and decorating classes for many years. She is currently the Bakery and Development Manager for Cherry Republic.

Cammie Buehler, B.S.-outdoor education has worked under some of the best chefs out west as a sous chef, baker, and private chef. Inspired by the abundance of local foods, she along with friend and fellow cook, Andy Schudlich started Epicure Catering in 2003 featuring “Contemporary Local Cuisine”.

Bo Burke, ISA Certified Arborist, ISA Certified Tree Worker and Climber Specialist, has more than 15 successful years in the preservation, restoration and care of trees. He has taught tree climbing for many years.

Julie Burgess is a certified Green Belt Nia instructor. She has been teaching Nia in Charlevoix since 2009. When not dancing, Julie works part time at the Charlevoix Public Library where she has been for the past 12 years.

Mary Buschell is a dairy goat farmer who, partnered with her husband Dick Flowers, raises and milks a small herd of Alpine goats. She has been making cheese for more than five years and has attended cheese seminars in the U.S. and Northern Italy.

Elizabeth Kane Buzzelli is a journalist, teacher, writer, speaker, and conference coordinator. Dead Dogs and Englishmen was chosen by Kirkus Reviews as one of the best novels of 2011 and featured in the Christian Science Monitor. She is at work now on her thirteenth book, a psychological thriller with international ties. She looks forward to leading other writers down into the happy quagmire of murder and mayhem.

Jim Camp, CLU, CHFC, LUTCF, CASL, has been in the insurance business for over 25 years working as an agent, trainer, and managing partner. He has moderated LUTC courses for 10 years and taught insurance courses at NMC. He is past president of the Northwest local NAIFA.

Mickey Cannon, executive chef and owner of Tuscan Bistro, has been a chef for more than 25 years. Part of his career was spent in Washington D.C. where he worked at the Italian Embassy, and cooked for four presidents.

Craig Carlson, B.S., A.S., is a 1st-degree black belt and certified instructor with the Aikido Yoshokai Assoc. of North America. He has been trained in aikido since 1989.

Dan Carlson has had a lifelong passion with photography. He started Carlson Photography in 2008 where he specializes in family and senior portrait sessions and wedding photography. He has shared his passion and talents with others in small group classes.

Tonja Carlson, A.A.S., has been involved with beading and other crafts including Native American arts since 1970. She currently works and teaches for Nawbin’s.

Shenandoah Chefalo, B.A., has spent over 20 years in marketing leading the way in the use of technology to grow business in her industry. She currently serves as a SCORE mentor using her expertise in social media marketing to help small business owners.

Nancy Gump Cieslinski, B.A.-education, is a teacher and writer. Nancy participated in the NMC Lifestory Project as a student, writer, and teacher. She has published lifestories.

Eric Clone is a life long paddler, an American Canoe Association Certified Open Water Instructor, and a Wilderness First Responder. Presently, Eric is the owner of Boardman Peddle and Paddle in Traverse City.

Melissa Clone, B.F.A, M.S.-educational media design and technology, has been teaching art for TCAPS to all ages since 2006. She has been photographing newborns and children for over three years.

Jeffrey Cobb, M.M.-choral conducting, is the Director of Music Programs at NMC. He has more than 20 years of experience in music education as a teacher, choral director, composer, and church Director of Music. Choirs under his direction have received state and national awards and invitations; several of his compositions have received awards.

Debra Coburn, M.H. Master of Humanities, B.F.A., B.S.-art education, and K-12 certified, recently retired from teaching fine arts at the high school and middle school level. Debra now teaches art workshops for adults and children around the community. Her medium of interest as an artist is fused glass.

Kathy Coffin-Sheard, B.F.A., has been an educator in the Chicago area and Madison public schools since 1996 before moving to Traverse City with her family.

Jennifer Coleman, MHSA, FACHE, CMM, is the Executive Director for Grand Traverse Radiologists, P.C. and President of the Radiology Business Managers of Michigan. She has worked in nearly every aspect of the health care industry from national to local levels including the American Hospital Association, Rush Presbyterian St. Luke’s Medical Center, Priority Health, and Northern Physicians Organization. She is a former graduate level instructor with Rush University’s Health Systems Management Program.

Christina Collins is a local artist and Lego builder. Christina is a member of Michigan Lego Users Group, has been featured on Interlochen Public Radio, and builds at History Center of Traverse City during the annual Lego Carnival. She has taught both art and Lego to children ages 4-17.

Dean Conners, B.F.A., B.L.A., is a registered landscape architect and member of the North American Society of Landscape Architects. His company, Borealis Design, focuses on regenerative, low-impact landscape and site design, as well as installation of sundials and solar calendars. He has been making maple syrup at home since 1996.

JoAnne Cook, J.D., is the former Chief Judge of the Little Traverse Bay Band of Odawa Indians. She served as Vice-President of the Michigan Indian Judicial Association.

Brady Corcoran, A.S.-recording engineer, B.S.-finance, is a lifelong musician and multi-instrumentalist. Brady is a song writer, music teacher and recording engineer, and has worked for several major recording studios that include Paramount and Record Plant. Currently he works as an adjunct instructor for NMC’s Audio Technology Department.

Chris Courtright is a 1995 graduate of the Culinary Institute of America. Upon graduation, he was one of four students annually hired by the school to participate in their Fish and Seafood Fellowship program. Chris has worked in many restaurants, most notably working under Top Chef judge, Eric Ripert, at his NYC restaurant, LeBernardin.

Michelle Corteggiano, founder of ATI Attraction Marketing, has more than 20 years of experience in direct selling, marketing, sales, relationship building, and leadership. A nationally recognized social media speaker, strategist and author; her book, “Power of Attraction” has been featured in the media.

Claire Crandell, B.A.-education, is a K-12 tutor and artist. She teaches art workshops to all ages and has been meditating for more than 25 years. She also practices Tai Chi, and loves the outdoors and photography.

Patty Cron-Huhta is a graduate of Michigan State University’s Hotel and Restaurant Management Program and is the Dining Room Management instructor at the Great Lakes Culinary Institute.

Linda Cronk, M.A., CFLE, works for MSU Extension’s Institute for Improving Health and Nutrition. She has been certified by Stanford University, developer of the Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (PATH) as a Master Trainer since 2004. She is a member of the statewide PATH steering committee.

Renee Cunningham, MSN, NHA, RN, is Train the Trainer certified for teaching nursing assistant classes. She has been teaching classes since 1998 in a variety of settings. She has 30 years of experience in long term care settings and knowledge of all the regulatory requirements.

Fred Curow, B.A., M.A., M.Ed.-social studies curriculum specialist., has 35 years secondary social studies teaching experience in Michigan and Hawaii. He was 12 years a moderator for adult discussion classes on population, globalization, and Foreign Policy Association Great Decisions in Washington State.

Cedric Currin, M.S.-electrical engineering, is President of Currin Corporation specializing in design, supply, and training related to a wide variety of solar power systems. Currin Corp has installed PV systems in the Great Lakes Region, Central America, the Caribbean, and Africa.

Cindy Daniel has a Business Management degree from College of William and Mary. She spent 12 years as a National Account Manager and Agency owner for Xerox Corporation in Baltimore, Dallas, Grand Rapids, and Muskegon. She served as the Marketing Director for Muskegon Catholic Schools for four years where she managed marketing campaigns, implemented a new website, and managed the enrollment process.

Joan D’Argo is an intuitive energy healer, teacher, and coach. With a gentle and compassionate approach, she helps people clear clutter, whether it’s physical, emotional, mental or spiritual. She recently completed her Level II Qigong certification with internationally acclaimed Lee Holden.

Brian Davis, B.S.-education, is a member of the Professional Golf Association and a golf instructor. With over 33 years of teaching experience, Brian has taught players of all ability levels. Currently, he is Director of Golf Instruction at Elmbrook Golf Academy at Elmbrook Golf Course in Traverse City.

Michael Davis, B.S.-music, has performed as a professional jazz musician on saxophone and flute for over 40 years and is founder and leader of the Mike Davis Trio. Mike started the NMC Jazz Ensemble and is the saxophone instructor at NMC.

Sherry Davis is a certified Food for Life cooking instructor with Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM). She helps northern Michigan residents learn how food impacts our health and how to make simple and nutritious recipes that promote health. (

Heather Deegan, B.A.-German language and literature, has more than five years experience tutoring German, ESL and basic reading skills to adults. She spent a year in Germany as an exchange student and occasionally does German to English translating.

Andrea Deibler began her culinary education in the barbecue mecca of Kansas City. She then spent six years in Chicago honing her butchering and charcuterie skills. She currently works at 9 Bean Rows in Suttons Bay.

Shawn Denton, M.S., B.S., teaches in the Business and Physical Education Areas at NMC.

Nancy Deye, M.A.-education, B.S., is a certified TCA (Tai Chi for Arthritis) instructor. She has been a student and teacher of Sun and Yang style Tai Chi since 2003 and is the author of “The Essential Principals of Taiji Quan.”

Jared Diephouse, has 13 years’ experience as a small engine mechanic. He has numerous equipment and engine repair certifications including by the Equipment and Engine Training Council. He is a para-professional at TBAISD Career Tech Center.

Kristine Dietrich, M.A., learned Spanish in Mexico and studied in Spain. She has been teaching Spanish since 2000 and ESL since 1985.

John DiGiacomo, J.D., B.S., is employed by Traverse Legal, PLC, an internet law firm with a global presence that focuses on intellectual property protection and litigation. He specializes in trademark, copyright, and internet law.

Scott Diment, B.S.-education, has been a tech-ed teacher since 1988 including the past 11 years with TCAPS.

Chris Doyal, a commercial photographer for more than 20 years, owned a studio in South Bend, IN. His specialty areas include product and underwater photography. Chris is currently the ecommerce manager for Goodwill Industries of Northern Michigan, Inc.

Jennifer Dykstra is an adjunct instructor for NMC Physical Education and has taught academic and noncredit classes in fitness for many years.

Gael Eschelweck, A.A., is a professional classical and Spanish guitarist. She performs for weddings and other public and private events. Gael also teaches guitar classes for TCAPS.

Barbara S. Evans, M.Ed., is a retired educator who taught in Asia, Africa, and the U.S. for 18 years. She and her husband Gordon owned and operated a bed and breakfast and Barbara has studied with chefs in Europe and the U.S. and published a cookbook.

Barbara and Gordon Evans have been enjoying RV time for the last several years after operating a B&B in Interlochen in the first retirement. Barbara is a retired teacher and life story writer. Gordon spent much of his career as a Foreign Service officer and later became president of International House in NYC.

Cathy Fairbanks, M.S.-career and technical education, is a Microsoft Office Specialist and has taught business and information systems at West Shore Community College. Currently, she is a Procurement Counselor for Networks Northwest in Traverse City.

Kate Fairman, M.S.-environmental policy, is an adjunct instructor for Grand Valley State University. She is also a freelance writer, artist, adventurer, and kayak instructor. She has taught for NMC-EES since 1989.

Tina Norris Fields, M.A.-leadership, B.S.-Bus/CIS, owns Tall Pines Computer Training and specializes in facilitating computer mastery for both adults and children. Her background includes database systems development, adult education, and genealogical research.

Robin Fisher has been practicing Yoga for 20 years and has been certified at the 200 and 500 (master) levels through Union Yoga—a school which complies with all Yoga Alliance requirements. She practices and teaches all the eight limbs of the Yoga path.

Steve Fisher, B.S., Certified Financial Planner Practitioner, has worked as Accounting Supervisor and Assistant Controller for a Fortune 200 Company.

Larry Flynn, B.S. Business Admin., Enrolled Agent (EA), Accredited Business Accountant (ABA), Series 7 Securities Licensed, Investment Advisory Representative (IAR). Larry served 3 times as president of the Independent Accounting Association of MI.

Keith Forton, Jr., M.S., has extensive Great Lakes sailing and racing experience. He has taught sailing courses for many years and teaches GPS workshops for TCAPS.

Heather Fraizer, Ph.D., joined the NMC Training and Research staff in 2008. She is a Lean Champion providing training to both manufacturing and service organizations.

Bridgit Frank has been an avid Pilates enthusiast for over 15 years. She is a STOTT® certified instructor and teaches mat classes in many area yoga studios. She teaches Pilates for NMC and owns Village Pilates where the focus is on individuals and small groups.

Linda Frank, M.A., has a TESOL/TESL/TEFL Certificate from Oxford Seminars. She has tutored English as a Second Language students for six years. She is a former NMC advisor.

Jackie Freeman, B.F.A., M.A.-adult learning, has taught art, led educational tours, owned a Suttons Bay art gallery, and covered the art show beat as a columnist for Northern Express. Her painted glass art was featured in Traverse Magazine.

Leslie Friend is a certified reflexologist and has used aroma therapy in her practice for more than 20 years. She has received specialized training in aroma therapy and in lymphatic therapy using the Carter technique. She owns On-the-Spot Reflexology.

Kerry Fulcher is a graduate of Great Lakes Culinary Institute and currently serves as sous chef at the Goodwill Inn Kitchen. She has experience in both front of the house and back of the house having worked at Lobdell’s, the Wellington Inn, and Siren Hall.

Mary Bevans Gillett, M.B.A., M.A., B.F.A., has worked in marketing communications, professional services and nonprofit management for more than 30 years, with experience as a grant writer, reviewer and manager as well as branding, strategic planning, community building, project management and marketing.

Pamela Grath, Ph.D.-philosophy, brings classroom and real-life experience to her topic. An independent bookstore owner for over two decades, she has additional experience in the publishing world, both in acquisitions and as a copy editor. She has taught NMC classes through the Humanities Department.

Paul Griggs, B.A., works as a Consultant for MIOSHA Consultation Education and Training (CET) Division, which provides construction safety services for the counties of Northern Michigan.

Robert Grose has worked as a welder since 1999. Beginning fall of 2010 he began teaching welding for the CTC and the NMC welding programs.

Matt Hall, AAS, is a master gardener and farmer. He owns a small farm business called Midnight Harvest, which will specialize in exotic mushroom farming in Leelanau County.

Gloria A. Halligan, M.A.-education; B.S.-health management, is owner of Traverse City Walks, LLC. She has led walks for the past 3 years on TC trails as well as guiding mountain hikes in AZ. She provides training and conference presentations. She was the Interagency Coordinating Council facilitator for Char-Em and COP counties. Gloria became a walker at the age of 35.

Melody Hamill, co-owner of the Circle H Stables at Ranch Rudolf, has been teaching children to ride for the past 10 years. She created and continues to run a variety of horse camps.

Esther Harmon, M.S.-elementary education, B.S., is retired after 30 years of public school teaching. She has taken extensive studies with National Quilting Teachers in design, technique, and color. She has 20+ years of quilt making experience.

Scott D. Harvey, J.D. University of Notre Dame Law School, is an associate in the Traverse City office of Smith Haughey Rice & Roegge, P.C. Scott specializes in the practice of nonprofit law and assists several nonprofit organizations in the area with their legal needs. Scott also practices in the areas of business and property law and estate planning.

John Haskin, Ph.D.-clinical psychology, is a licensed clinical psychologist with over 30 years of experience. He was director of training and public information for Great Lakes Community Mental Health and has been a consultant and trainer for business and industry, law enforcement, and mental health audiences. He has taught a variety of topics at NMC since 1977.

Chuck Hawkins, Orvis Endorsed 2010 Guide Service of the Year and Certified Fly Casting Instructor, brings over 35 years of fly fishing experience to his clients. Chuck is the owner of Hawkins Outfitters of Lake Ann, MI.

Stephanie Hawkins has a 1st-degree black belt through the U.S. Judo Federation. She has competed nationally, and is State Judo Champion numerous times in her division.

Jody Hayden, co-owner of Grocer’s Daughter Chocolate in Empire, is an avid food adventurer. She has led dozens of chocolate tastings, classes and even trips to Ecuador to visit cacao farmers.

Jennifer Helferich has been involved with beading and other crafts since 2004 and sells her handcrafted jewelry locally. She has been a youth group leader since 2008.

Marty Heller, Ph.D., is an organic vegetable farmer in Leelanau County. He has conducted research on the food system through University of Michigan’s Center for Sustainable Systems and the Mott Group for Sustainable Food Systems at MSU. More than anything, he enjoys growing, cooking, eating, talking about, (and singing about!) good, local food.

Donald B. Herrmann, C.P.A., B.A.-accounting, owns Herrmann and Associates, P.C., a certified public accounting firm specializing in accounting and tax preparation for individuals and small businesses. He has worked as a Certified Public Accountant since 1985.

Lisa Hockin, A.A., B.F.A.-art education, is currently an elementary art educator with Elk Rapids Public Schools. As an artist, she uses a variety of art mediums including clay.

Rose Hollander recently completed a chef certification course at Ballymaloe Cookery School in Europe. She has attended cooking classes over the years and taught cooking classes privately and in local restaurants. She currently works as a paralegal for Dingeman, Dancer & Christopherson. Her lifelong interest in food and cooking is rooted in her father who was a chef.

Nancy Honchell, B.A., is a retired teacher with a variety of experience. Her background as a Language Arts and Reading Specialist often brought art to students as an extended activity. Retirement allows time to experiment with various art media and craft projects. Nancy has taught floor cloth classes through the Oliver Center for the Arts (formerly Crystal Lake Art) in Frankfort.

Allen Horstman, Ph.D., J.D., began his career as an attorney and is Professor Emeritus at Albion College where he taught history, law, and social science for 27 years. Allen has published several books: his most recent is “Christianity – A Guide for the Thoughtful.”

Nan Horstman, M.S., Ed. Spec., a retired teacher and elementary school principal, has taken and taught many cooking classes.

David Husser, B.M., M.M.-music education, maintains a private piano studio. He is a member of the music faculty at Northwestern Michigan College. During the summer, he teaches at Interlochen Arts Camp. He composes music for piano and for various vocal ensembles.

Kelly Ignace, B.S.-resource planning and management, has 10 years of experience in the waste/recycling industry. She’s the Director of Marketing and Public Relations for American Waste and incorporates computer technology and mobile applications into her daily business routine.

Bart and Gail Ingraham have lifelong agricultural backgrounds with specific horticultural studies, certification in the Master Gardener program, and have been gardening in Northern Michigan since 1977.

Gail Ingraham and Lisa Harold became SoulCollage Facilitators, licensed to sponsor and facilitate SoulCollage groups after a year long study with a SoulCollage group. Their training was led by Seena B. Frost, creator of SoulCollage. Lisa and Gail both have extensive teaching experience in their individual fields of dance choreography and garden design.

Dale Inman, A.A.S.-engineering, is a third-degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do and chief instructor for NMC’s Tae Kwon Do classes. He has taught youth and adults and trained at NMC for over 23 years.

Debra O. Jackson, B.S.-business management, is a business professional with experiences in sales, marketing, training, and business management in small and large companies. She has also worked with acquisitions and reorganizations.

LeeAnn Jacobs, B.A., grew up with horses and for the past 7 years has worked with children and horses teaching novice through advanced levels of riding.

Rufus James, B.A-design, M.F.A., is a painter whose work has been shown in New York, Philadelphia, Santa Fe, Paris, Michigan, and several galleries and museums in California. 

Cheryl Janz graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY, and previously taught culinary classes at the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, IL. She has recently moved back to Michigan, where she enjoys cooking with the many local products.

Marti Jeffs, Ayurvedic Health Practitioner, is the owner and yoga teacher at Yoga At Ladaka near Frankfort. She has been teaching yoga since 2000 and studied Ayurveda at New World School of Ayurveda (2008-2013).

Jerrold Jenkins is the President and CEO of Jenkins Group, Inc., serving independent publishers, small presses, and the information industry. Jerrold is the publisher of two trade magazines—Small Press and Publishing Entrepreneur and has authored two books, Inside the Bestsellers and Publish to Win.

Mark Johnson, B.A., studied viticulture and enology at the Technological University of Wiesbaden, Germany. He has been a winemaker on Old Mission Peninsula since 1983 and has served as vice president at Chateau Chantal since it began in 1993.

Scott Johnson, an admitted geek, has been building, tweaking, and tuning computers for more than 20 years. He has extensive experience in tutoring users for home and business. He owns the Stained Glass Cabinet Company.

Chad Kahler, B.S.-environmental education, earth science, and biology, has taught in the College for Kids program for many years. He is also a part-time instructor in the Physical Education Department at NMC.

Steve Kellman, B.A., is the Coordinator of Web Content at NMC and an adjunct instructor. He has taught web design and Adobe InDesign since 2010.

Ben Kelly has a NASM personal training certification, specializing in cardio, strength and mobility through functional bodyweight exercises. He has excelled in many sports, from Junior Olympic Swimming to triathlons, and has been working in the health industry since 2012.

Bryan Kelly is an adjunct instructor in NMC’s Construction program specializing in Carpentry. He has a lifetime of woodworking experience.

Dan Kelly, freelance filmmaker, worked in NYC from 2004-2010 collaborating extensively with the avante garde dance and performance community. He’s cut many short documentaries and narratives and is currently completing a VFX heavy narrative through his production company, Trickster Pictures. He is one of the driving forces behind the Michigan Movie Makers, a regional affinity group meeting monthly in TC.

Don Kelly, B.B.A.-marketing, has extensive automotive service knowledge. He was an automotive assistant service manager for four years.

Keith E. Kelly, B.S., EET, MCT is the director of NMC Microsoft IT Academy. He teaches programming in the CIT Developer program and is prior coordinator of NMC Electronics Technology program. Keith leads NMC’s Makerspace effort creating new robotics and automation coursework in the Engineering Technology program.

Kerry Kelly has been on the board of directors for the Friends of Sleeping Bear Dunes since 2006. He retired from Dow Chemical in 2004 and is involved in a wide variety of volunteer projects at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.

Michael Kelly, B.F.A., has appeared in numerous Old Town Playhouse (OTP) productions, an independent feature film, and commercials. He is a member of the Screen Actors Guild.

Blake Key, Ph.D., P.E., is a home brewer, engineer, and NMC chemistry professor. He is the president of TC Hopz, a local home brewing club.

Brandon Kietzman, A.A.S., graduated from Bikram Yoga College Teacher Training in 2002, then recertified in 2006, 2009, and 2013. He has attended many Bikram Yoga Seminars, studied with senior Bikram yoga teachers, taught nearly 10,000 yoga classes, and has been teaching for NMC since 2009. He is director of Bikram Yoga T.C.

Doug Kimble has studied Iyengar style Yoga for over 10 years. He teaches yoga at NMC in the physical education department.

Kevin Kimble, B.S., has over 20 years of small engine repair experience, and is presently working as a certified teacher at the TBAISD Career Tech Center.

Diane Kimmel, M.A., is a recently retired certified teacher specializing in educational technology. Throughout her career she has taught English, Business, and Computer courses. Diane has been teaching computer courses for NMC-EES since 2004.

Brian Kissel, graduate of the Great Lakes Culinary Institute, is the chef at Manistee National Golf & Resort.

Susan Kopka, M.S., B.S., LMSW, has taught photography at NMC for over 15 years. She is sole proprietor of Common Counsel, offering clinical social work services to families/individuals. Her specialties include aging, caring for elderly family members, family therapy, and grief and loss counseling. She has over 10 years of combined experience with Leelanau County Commission on Aging, Leelanau County Family Coordinating Council, and Munson Home Health Care.

Pete LaCourse, B.A.-physical education, is the Physical Education Program Coordinator at NMC. He has worked in physical education and recreational program administration since 1979.

Maribel LaLonde, B.S.-education, has been a Jackie Sorenson Aerobics certified instructor since 1998.

Kate Lane, B.S.-international business, represents Michigan Venison Company, her family’s business based in Traverse City. Known as the “Deer Diva”, she oversees recipe and product development, special events, brand awareness and social media.

Judy Larson has been a certified White Belt NIA instructor since 2000. She has 20+ years of experience in the fitness field with Munson Medical Center’s Vital Choice Wellness Program and has coordinated programs, taught exercise classes, and given presentations on the topic of wellness.

Kathleen Merrill Leach, M.A., is a voice teacher, adjudicator and clinician, and music educator. She has been a choral and ensemble director at the high school and college levels. She is also a vocal soloist.

Carrie Leaureaux is Odawa and Ojibwe and a descendent of the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians. She is the Lead Anishnaabemowiin instructor for the Band. Her duties include the revitalization of the native language among tribal members and interested community. She has provided management training in Cultural Sensitivity to the Band to area businesses.

Philip Leete has a mechanical engineering degree from Hope College. He teaches robotics, mathematics, and dance at TC West Senior High and is the founder of the Northern VEX Robotics League in Traverse City.

Nikki Lennox, B.S.-criminal justice, is of Greek decent and enjoys teaching classes from her heritage. She has taught community education for more than 15 years and owned a gourmet food company for five years specializing in gourmet desserts.

Stephen Lewis, Ph.D., has published seven print novels. His most recent novel, A Suspicion of Witchcraft, an ebook original, was published by Belgrave House in 2014. His short stories and poems have appeared in numerous journals. Templates, his sixth college textbook, was published in 2014. He retired as Professor of English Emeritus from Suffolk Community College and currently teaches composition online for Ferris State University.

Doug Lichty, B.B.A.-business administration, is a member of the PGA Golf Profession with 20+ years of teaching experience. He was head golf pro at Leland Country Club from 1993-2004 and now owns the Traverse City Golf Center.

Misaeng Suh Liggett, a native of Japan, attended Tsuji Cooking School in Tokyo and worked as a chef. She has taught Japanese cooking workshops and Japanese language at NMC since 2005.

Zack Light, M.S., holds an ACE Trainer certification as well as certification as a personal trainer. He winters in Florida and during the summer months is employed as a police officer in Antrim County. Zack has had success locally and internationally as a weightlifter and bodybuilder. Zack is an adjunct physical education instructor at NMC.

Jordan J. Lindberg, Ph.D., is executive vice-president of eFulfillment Service, Inc., a Traverse City-based order fulfillment company primarily servicing online retailers. He owns an online retail store selling cremation urns (, and is digital publisher of a WordPress blog devoted to fly fishing (

Mardi Link, B.A., is the author of “Bootstrapper,” a memoir published by Alfred Kropf as well as two true crime books, “When Evil Came to Good Hart” and “Isadore’s Secret.” Bootstrapper was on the Indie Next List and both true crime books made the Heartland Bestseller List.

Janet Lively, M.A.-creative writing, worked as a newspaper reporter for many years before beginning a second career as a high school English teacher. A recent transplant to Traverse City, she is currently working as a freelance writer/editor and TCAPS substitute teacher.

Ali Lopez has been cooking, feeding and teaching others about “real food” since 1992. She was Chef de Cuisine at the Omega Institute in Rhinebeck NY, one of the largest vegetarian kitchens in North America. Ali is also a Certified Health Coach, a graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition.

Lee Lutes, B.S.-MSU, is a wine maker and general manager of the winery at Black Star Farms. He’s a Traverse City native with extensive experience and travel outside the region—he returned to take part in the Michigan Wine Industry.

Albert Lynch, DVM, CVA, CVCP, has been a practicing veterinarian for over 45 years. His current focus is on Integrative Medicine which serves to combine traditional Western medicine with complementary holistic therapies.

Shirley MacDonald, M.A.-teaching, has been an elementary and young child teacher for over 20 years in the Detroit area. Now permanently living in this area, she has carried her interest and love for balanced language arts and children’s literature into her recent retirement.

Kristan Mack, B.A.-exercise science has been active in group fitness as an instructor since 1996. She has been dancing since the age of 6 and offers dance fitness classes in the Traverse City area.

Angela Macke, R.N., owns and operates Light of Day Organic Farm and Tea Shop, a 24-acre certified organic and biodynamic farm. She is a Specialty Tea Institute graduate, a Co-op America Green Partner, and a member of the U.S. Tea Association. She is a nationally recognized speaker.

Kate MacKenzie, B.S.-food management, has been teaching since 1998. She is currently the Family and Consumer Science teacher at TC East Middle School. She has worked in the food industry throughout her career and takes special interest in ethnic cuisine.

Eric Mansuy, M.S.-architecture, University of Michigan, worked on the 2005 Solar Decathlon home exhibited in Washington, DC. Eric works at Clark, Walter, Sirrine Architects in Traverse City.

Ken Marek, M.A.-English, retired from NMC after teaching literature and composition for 38 years. For the past 20 years, Ken has studied and taught Michigan writers from early figures like Caroline Kirkland to contemporaries including Jim Harrison, Jack Driscoll, and Michael Delp.

Christy Marshall, B.A., is a retail business owner who knows first hand the value of exceeding customer expectations and has trained many employees in the art of providing outstanding customer service. She also brings more than 20 years experience in administration in the nonprofit sector where customer relationships are also crucial.

Colleen Masterson-Bzdok, B.S.-biology, B.A.-education, and M.S.-Great Lakes studies, environmental geosciences, has done research on all five Great Lakes, the Atlantic, and the Caribbean. Colleen is an adjunct instructor at NMC.

Patricia Matusky, Ph.D.-ethnomusicology, M.A., B.M.-piano, has taught music at the university level for several years abroad and in the U.S. She has taught performance, theory, and history in both Western and Oriental music.

Liana May, M.S.-conservation, ecology, and the environment, has taught labs for two graduate level courses at U of M, Forest Ecology and Remote Sensing and an undergraduate course in plant taxonomy. Her work experience includes consulting for the Leelanau Conservancy and field ecology for Nature Serve and the Michigan Natural Features Inventory.

Laura McCain is a graduate of NMC’s Culinary program, a Registered Dietitian, and a Certified Diabetes Educator. She has worked as a Clinical Dietician at Munson Medical Center since 1995 and does community cooking and nutrition education.

David McCool is a master angler, certified as a fly casting instructor by both Orvis® and the Federation of Fly Fishers. He has been featured in the New York Times, Fly Rod & Reel, Field & Stream, United Kingdom’s Trout Fisherman Magazine, AARP, and other publications. He is the owner of McCool Outdoor, a fishing and outdoor guiding service in Traverse City.

Marilyn McCormick, M.A.-humanities, B.A.-art and literature, taught literature and humanities for 20 years at St. Francis High School in Traverse City. 

Stewart McFerran, B.A.-environmental studies, has worked for years as an outdoor leader and educator teaching orienteering with compass and maps.

RuthAnn McGrath-Priest, B.F.A., M.A.-counseling, has taught art to both children and adults.

James McIntyre has been a member of the Grand Traverse Bay Sail and Power Squadron for almost 25 years. He worked for the National Weather Service for 30+ years and taught weather courses many times for the Power Squadron.

James McKinney has an extensive career in writing and production. He is a playwright, and fiction writer, has been involved in theater production, and is a successful scriptwriter for television and feature films.

Adam McMarlin enjoys his current role as Sous Chef of The Cook’s House. He has been engaged in his culinary career since he was able to work. He worked at several restaurants in the Detroit area throughout high school and college. He most recently worked for French native Chef Olivier Bioteau at the Farmhouse Cafe in San Diego before relocating to Traverse City in 2010.

Siranee McMillan attended the Royal Thai Exquisite Cooking School and the International Cooking Center, both in Bangkok, Thailand prior to moving to Traverse City.

Doug Mehl has studied Tae Kwon Do for 25 years and holds the rank of 3rd-degree Black Belt.

Robert Meisner, J.D., B.A., is a nationally known condominium specialist. He has been a practicing attorney since 1968, is general legal counsel for United Condominium Owners of Michigan, and is co-draftsperson of the Michigan Condominium Act. Mr. Meisner has been teaching condominium law courses since 1981, is an adjunct professor of law, and authors a syndicated column.

Janet Messerschmidt, D.O., is a practicing internal medicine physician at Milliken Medical DLLC. Prior to medical school, she had extensive training as an exercise physiologist which included sports medicine, rehabilitation, and kinesiology.

Phillip Mikesell, Ph.D., Vanderbilt University, taught comparative politics at Wabash College for more than 40 years. He lived, worked, and traveled extensively in Latin America, Europe, and the Middle East. He retired from active teaching in 2009 and is currently working on the topic of democracy and economic development.

Brad Miller is a certified ski instructor and a certification examiner for the Central Division of the Professional Ski Instructors of America.

Matt Miller is a graduate of the Wilderness Awareness School Residential Program & Anake Leadership Program and completed the Wildlife Tracking Intensive program at Alderleaf Wilderness College. Matt serves as Executive Director and Lead Instructor at HumaNature School in Traverse City.

Wayne Moody, is Director of Automotive Technology at NMC. His is an ASE Master Automotive and Truck Technician who, for 34 years, owned and operated a local automotive repair facility in Traverse City.

Jim Morse is an alumnus of the Culinary Program at NMC and works at Siren Hall restaurant in Elk Rapids. Jim is involved in community culinary events including Slow Food USA, Bioneers conference, Father Fred Foundation Auction Dinner, and the March of Dimes Star Chefs Auction.

Jim Moses and Linda Grigg have grown Shiitake mushrooms on their Leelanau County farm mushroom farm since 1986. Their customers include many area restaurants. Jim has attended seminars on mushroom cultivation since 1980, and is a member of the West Michigan Mycological Society and the North American Mycological Association.

Jo Ellen Mosher, B.A.-physical education, has been a health educator since 1985. She specializes in stress management and has taught lifestyle management and nutrition/weight management.

Walter Muellenhagen, B.A., is currently a Certified SBDC Small Business Consultant at Networks Northwest. Walt is a former Commercial Lender of 12 years, served in the US Air Force for 7 years, and has a background in sales and small business ownership. 

Trisha Neff, M.A., Chinese Studies, has studied mandarin in the U.S., mainland China, and has lived and studied in Taiwan.

Glenn Noffsinger is the Executive Sous Chef at Crystal Mountain Resort & Spa. He is also a personal chef specializing in whole foods cooking to achieve health and wellness for private clients. Glenn has over 15 years professional chef experience in country clubs, fine dining restaurants, resorts, bakeries, and as a business owner and caterer.

Rachel North, B.A.-journalism, is Marketing Director for Traverse Magazine. Since 1990, she has helped businesses succeed with marketing including advertising, public relations, media buying, and merchandising. Her experience ranges from $1M budgets for Ford, GM, and Ralston Purina to leveraging free and low cost tactics for smaller clients.

Brad Novak has been a musician for over 25 years. He owns “The Beat Lab” teaching studio, and is on the faculty at GTACS, and is adjunct faculty at NMC.

Robert Odette, B.A.-education, is a first-degree black belt with nearly 10 years of teaching experience.

Susan Odom is a food historian and the proprietress at Hillside Homestead, a historic farmstay inn located in Suttons Bay. Her food history training began at Greenfield Village where she worked for many years at Firestone Farm. She has also worked and volunteered at several local museums and historic sites.

Lori O’Neil has been involved with crafts most of her life and has been teaching rag rug braiding at NMC for many years.

Jan Oliver, M.A.-communications, is the designer/owner of Grand Traverse Arts ( She is a watercolor painter, illustrator, graphic designer and educator. She is currently illustrating a children’s book and has sold many paintings, illustrations and logo designs. Jan has taught as an adjunct instructor at NMC.

Sharon Olson was previously an associate professor at STOUT University, Menonomie, Wisconsin, where she taught a variety of courses related to Life Span topics (aging, death and dying, and others). She also has developed and taught credit-approved courses in nursing (Approved by the Wisconsin Nurses association Continuing Ed. Approval Program). Today, Sharon continues to teach classes and write nursing articles here in Traverse City.

Anne-Marie Oomen is author of Love, Sex and 4-H, as well as Pulling Down the Barn, and House of Fields, both Michigan Notable Books, and Uncoded Woman, a collection of poems. She has taught creative writing courses for over thirty years, and taught writing from art classes at Interlochen Arts Academy since 2010. She serves as instructor at The Solstice MFA at Pine Manor College (MA), Interlochen’s College of Creative Arts (MI), and at conferences throughout the country.

Madame Der-Boghossian Parker is a French-born citizen who lived in Provence. She teaches private French lessons, tutors French, and holds French cooking classes.

David Parrish, B.M.E., M.M.E.-music education, M.F.A.-humanities, is a retired music and humanities teacher. He taught choral music and served as Music Coordinator for TCAPS.

Mary Parrish, B.M.E.-music education, has been teaching elementary general and vocal music with TCAPS since 1965. She has taught private piano and been a conductor/accompanist for the Traverse City Elementary Honors Choir.

Eric Patterson is the chef/owner of The Cooks’ House on Front Street specializing in local sustainable cuisine. He was the chef at Andre’s French Restaurant in Las Vegas prior to moving to Traverse City.

Fran Perkett, M.T.S., B.A., has worked for more than 20 years in education and pastoral positions. She is a regional workshop leader.

Allison Leigh Peters is a poet and blogger in Traverse City. She won an Academy of American Poets Prize in 2010, and her poems have been published or are forthcoming in the Michigan Quarterly Review, The Portland Review, and elsewhere. She is Founder and Creative Director of Elemeno, a nonprofit publishing house, and Founder, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Orange Quarterly (

Jean Peters is coordinator of the Healthcare Skills Alliance of Northwest Michigan, a collaborative group of employers, educators, and workforce professionals who are working to advance the Long Term Care sector. Her role is to help employers define the skills necessary for healthcare occupations, then assist educational providers in developing training programs. She has also worked as a Trainer for Community Services Network.

Erik Petersen, B.S.-health and fitness, is a trainer, medical technician, and massage therapist. He has worked with kettlebells for the last two years and teaches group sessions.

Harlan “Pete” Peterson was an industrial designer with Ford Motor Company who, following his passion for cooking, moved to Northern Michigan in 1984 and opened Tapawingo restaurant. Located in tiny Ellsworth, Tapawingo garnered national attention for its menu of fresh local foods, artfully presented.

Don Piche is the founder of the TC Curling Club.

Jonathan Pool is an out-of-the-box thinker who’s passionate about helping others achieve what they did not believe possible. He draws on his infectious energy and personal experience to make a difference in everything he does. Jonathan is the Professor of Idea and Opportunity for the Free Agent Academy, and a certified Paterson Center strategic advisor and coach.

John Pratten III, President/Founder of Proactive Maintenance Consultants, LLC. John’s is ASNT compliant, Level III trained thermographer and has conducted training workshops in Europe, Asia and North America.

Jim Press, M.A.-history, B.A., is an instructor of history in the Humanities Area and a faculty trainer at NMC. He is a member of the Historical Society of Michigan.

Sandy Proctor, B.S.-Spanish, has traveled extensively throughout Latin America, and studied and taught ESL in Buenos Aires, Argentina from 2007 to 2012. She has been teaching Spanish since 2008.

Dennis J. Prout, CFP®, has taught financial planning courses since 1985. He is a Certified Financial Planner and a Master Elite Advisor through Ed Slott & Company, LLC. He founded Prout Financial Design more than 20 years ago. For more than 10 years, he has hosted a Retirement Planning Radio Show weekly on WTCM’s News Talk 580 AM.

Tim Pulliam is a licensed plumber, boiler installer, mechanical contractor, and steamfitter with 10 years’ experience in the HVAC field.

Bill Queen, B.S., is a Program Coordinator at NMC and coordinates the Michigan Energy Demonstration Center.

Maggie Quinn, M.A.-clothing and textiles, B.A.-home economics, is a certified personal trainer and a certified Jacki Sorensen aerobics instructor. She also has extensive experience in quilt making and design.

Linda Racine, M.A.-counseling psychology, has been with NMC’s Training and Research since 1996 specializing in team skills, leadership skills, conflict management, facilitation, and lean office. She has provided training for manufacturing, healthcare, educational, governmental, and service organizations.

Kathy Raftery, B.A.-elementary education, has been a student of Jackie Sorensen Aerobics since 1990. She has completed the American College of Exercise (ACE) certification training.

MaryPat Randall, R.N., M.S.N, has over 35 years’ experience as a registered nurse, patient advocate and resource coach. She is a U of M nursing instructor and executive director of Healthcare Coordinates, LLC.

Tim Reed owned and operated Reed’s on the River, a gourmet cook shop, in Tawas from 2007-2014. This followed a 30-year career with General Motors. He currently lives in Traverse City and offers personal chef services through TR Cooks.

Mary Reh, B.S. culinary arts, has worked as a restaurant chef, banquet chef, pastry chef, and executive sous chef for Hyatt Hotels. She was the Executive Chef at the Culinary Institute of America Dining Room and currently works as a personal chef.

Mandy Remai, B.A., M.A., is a nationally certified counselor. She specializes in innovative weight management skills and tools for living a more empowered life.

Chris Remy is a certified bike mechanic from Bike Lab TC with 7 years of professional bike shop and field experience. Chris provides repairs for many of the area’s bicycle events and races.

Thomas Riccobono, is a Humanities Instructor at NMC.

Joan Richmond, B.F.A., M.F.A., teaches painting in NMC’s Humanities Area. She has exhibited regionally in galleries and juried exhibitions. Her work is in private and corporate collections throughout the U.S.

Ken Richmond, AIA, B.Arch., M.Arch., architect and watercolor artist, has painted and held workshops locally and abroad. Best known for his paintings of buildings and landscapes, his work is widely exhibited and collected.

Richard Rischar, Ph.D.-music history, has taught a variety of music history, film/multimedia, and music theater courses at the college level for over 10 years. He has taught at University of Michigan-Dearborn, Dickinson College, and Devry University.

Libby Robold, M.A., E-RYT, PRYT, AHC, has been teaching yoga for NMC since 1984 and yoga therapy for many years. She and her husband co-direct Yoga for Health Education in TC.

Michael Robold, M.A., CYT, has been teaching yoga since 2002, after assisting in classes for 15 years. He teaches for NMC and co-directs Yoga for Health Education, Center for Conscious Living, in TC.

Peggy Rod, B.S., is a retired TCAPS elementary teacher. She has enjoyed the game of Mah Jongg since 2001.

Darrell Rogers, B.A., has been with NMC’s Training & Research since 1987 and specializes in process improvement skills, lean manufacturing, statistical process control, leadership skills, team training, facilitator training and train-the-trainer.

Mary Rogers, Regional Director of the Small Business Development Center and Certified Small Business Consultant, has helped hundreds of business owners get their idea off the ground. Founder of Marigold Women in Business, she has owned and operated two small businesses, lead several small business organizations and is a tireless champion for entrepreneurship.

Dave Rose is a professional sports fisherman and owner of Wilderness Guiding Services. He is a member of the National Outdoor Writers Association contributing articles to the Traverse City Record-Eagle and other publications.

Katherine A. Roth, M.D., is a local family physician who practices Integrative Medicine by combining complementary practices with traditional medicine. She is trained in medical acupuncture through UCLA and recently completed a 2-year program in Zen Shiatsu.

Laura Rozeboom, B.A., has a TESOL certificate from the School for International Training and a CELTA certification from Cambridge University (UK). She has taught English as a Second Language in Greece, Tanzania, and England, and locally since 2006.

Holly Rudolph, B.A., is President of Frost Hill Financial Services, LLC. She is a QuickBooks ProAdvisor and a member of the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers. She has worked in finance since 1992.

Michael A. Rutledge holds undergraduate degrees in military history and geography, and an M.A. in humanities. He teaches history, geography, and humanities at TC College Preparatory Academy and history and humanities at NMC. He is a retired U.S. Army NCO.

James H. Ryan, B.A., graduate work in marketing, had a career in management, sales, and product development for a profit center with 300+ employees and 8 branches. He also has 17 years of consulting, training, and process facilitation for his firm, JRA.

Lyn Salathiel, M.A., is a teacher and traveler who taught English and Humanities at TC Central High School for 36 years. Art appreciation and critical thinking were components of the curriculum. His travels have included Eastern and Western Europe, Greece, Turkey, and the Middle East.

Diane Samarasinghe, MSW, RYT-500, is a retired social worker who has been teaching yoga at NMC and other sites since 2005. Through her gentle and integrated approach, Diane provides opportunities for students of all ages and levels to access the healing powers of yoga.

Pat Samborski has been involved with sewing all her life. She owned and operated The Added Touch, a consignment shop specializing in gifts made by area craftspersons. She is now a freelance seamstress and sewing instructor.

Corey J. Sanderson, B.A.-philosophy, M.Div.-religious studies, S.T.M.-theology, philosophy, and ethics, has been teaching Ethics, Philosophy and World Religion courses at NMC since 2005.

Margaret Schaal, B.B.A., has been involved at Old Town Playhouse for more than 20 years as a director, producer, painter, designer, and teacher. She has served on the Artistic Board, been Volunteer of the Year, and is an Unsung Hero Award recipient.

Caroline Schaefer-Hills is a lead faculty for NMC in the Visual Communications program. She has been with NMC since 2000.

Stephanie Schall-Brazee, M.M.E., B.M.E., teaches elementary music for TCAPS. She has worked with elementary, high school, and college choirs.

Mike Schmerl is a Master Electrician and electrical contractor with over 30 years of experience. He is a NABCEP Certified Solar PV Installer as well as a solar PV and electrical code trainer throughout the Eastern U.S.

Andy Schudlich, B.A.-studio art, gained his culinary experience at the Bluebird Restaurant in Leland.

Doug Schultz has been fencing since 2003. He has assisted teaching beginning fencers at NMC and facilitated independent practice groups for fencing students in the TC area.

Mike Schmerl is a Master Electrician and electrical contractor with over 30 years of experience. He is a NABCEP Certified Solar PV Installer as well as a solar PV and electrical code trainer throughout the Eastern U.S.

Paul H. Schultz, Bachelor of Law, Wayne State, a 45-year member of the State Bar of Michigan, is in private practice and a Prosecuting Attorney. He has a certificate of Specialized Training in Estate Planning through the Institute of Continuing Legal Education.

Teresa Scollon, M.F.A., M.B.A, is a poet, essayist, editor, and freelance writer. A National Endowment for the Arts fellow and past writer-in-residence at Interlochen Arts Academy, she teaches at NMC. She also serves on the board of Michigan Writers, Inc. Her teaching experience includes corporate and nonprofit training, high school, and college. Her poetry collection To Embroider the Ground with Prayer (Wayne State University Press) is available in bookstores.

Jodi Scott/Stahl, M.A., has over 20 years of teaching experience with TCAPS. Currently, she teaches at Blair Elementary. She enjoys math, majored in math and science, and has taught multiple levels.

Kennith Scott, B.A.-mechanical engineering, is a training specialist with NMC's Training Services. He has over 10 years of manufacturing experience including roles as senior manufacturing engineer, frontline supervisor, and value stream owner. He is a Certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt.

Greg Seaman has been a guitarist, singer, music instructor and songwriter for 30 years. He teaches private lessons on ukulele, guitar, bass guitar, 5-string banjo, and voice.

Laurie Sears, is Director of Jazz Bands and an Adjunct Instructor of Woodwinds. Laurie is also on the faculty of the Interlochen College of Creative Arts Adult Band Camp. Band directing experience includes TC West Junior High and TC Christian School. While in the Chicago area, Laurie directed the Jazz Ensemble and was an Adjunct Instructor of Woodwinds and Jazz at Columbia College, Concordia University Chicago and Triton College.

Cliff Sedlacek has worked in the plumbing trade for 32 years and is a Master Plumber with his own successful business for 23 years. He also holds a boilers license and a mechanical contractor’s license.

Jack Segal, M.A.-international relations, was a senior US diplomat who served in Israel/Palestine during the Gulf War and the first Intifada. He is presently Co-chair of the International Affairs Forum of Traverse City. Previously he worked in the White House as a director on the National Security Council, where he dealt with Russian and Ukraine, and with Iranian and North Korean weapons of mass destruction and nuclear non-proliferation. He was a negotiator on the START agreement, and with his wife, Karen Puschel Segal, opened the first western Consulate General in central Russia.

Pam Shaberly, M.S., is a retired elementary teacher who first learned the game of Mah Jongg in 1976 in New York. She has been sharing her knowledge of the game since moving to Leelanau County in 1997.

Maggie Shaughnessy, M.A.-adult education/training, has been an online instructor for and Baker College.

Heather Shaw is a freelance editor and book designer. Recent local work includes Aaron Stander’s Medieval Murders, Cooks’ House by Eric Patterson and Jennifer Blakeslee, and In the Kitchen with Fustini’s.

Joan Sheard, M.S., R.N., has 30+ years as an educator and nurse—10 years at EMU teaching health education and serving as Director of Substance Abuse Education and Training, and 20 years as a school nurse and teacher. She has written and taught Lifestory writing at NMC for several years.

Heather Shumaker, M.S., is a freelance writer who began writing professionally in 1996. She is the author of “It’s OK Not to Share: and Other Renegade Rules for Raising Competent and Compassionate Kids” (Tarcher/Penguin 2012) and has published in magazines like Parenting, Organic Gardening, and Traverse. She is a frequent speaker on early childhood issues.

Scott Silliman, B.S., A.A.S., is a 1st degree black belt in Yoshokai Aikido. He has been teaching at NMC since 2004.

Janene Silverman received her formal training from the Culinary Institute of America. She was owner and chef at Zza’s Trattoria in California before moving to Piemonte, Italy where she has savored its tradition of food and wine since 2000. She spends her summers in Traverse City.

Dorothy Sirrine, RYT 200, has been a student of yoga for over 12 years, drawing from vinyasa flow, ashtanga, and yin traditions. She was certified to teach yoga by Union Yoga in 2009, and has been attending workshops and seminars since.

Michael Skarupinski is a full-time instructor in NMC’s Great Lakes Culinary Institute. He has been a pastry chef for nearly 20 years including working with 4- and 5-star properties in Michigan and winning numerous awards.

Kevin Skarnulis, M.A., CIT, is a certified teacher and computer specialist with numerous technology certifications including Microsoft Office Specialist. Kevin owns a computer consulting business in Traverse City.

Julia Slack has been teaching cake decorating at NMC since 2004. She enjoys baking, cooking and creating special cakes for all occasions.

Zofia Slupecki emigrated from Poland in the 1960s. She has mastered traditional Polish cooking and has long been teaching her techniques to family and friends.

Bill Smethells, M.S.-physics, Ph.D.-astronomy, has taught a variety of courses in physics, including electricity and magnetism. He and his wife own a 1985 Catalina 30 sailboat that they are renovating.

Alexandra Smith B.A.-communications, B.F.A.-graphic design, has worked for several marketing and promotions firms including Visual Services, Inc. and Evigna, where she worked on accounts for several Fortune 500 companies such as Ford, Jaguar and Bosch. She now dedicates herself full-time to teaching, and is currently an instructor for the Digital Graphic Design and Digital Imaging classes at NMC.

Brian Smith, A.S., is a fifth-degree black belt and has taught Kuntaw since 1974. He is the U.S. Director-International Kuntaw Federation, and Executive Director-American Maharlika Kuntaw Association.

Randy Smith, B.S.-resource development, has skied all Nordic disciplines for 40 years and is a PSIA-certified Instructor for classic and skating techniques. He is also the owner of Renewable Services, LLC, a design/installation company for solar PV, solar thermal, and wind energy with BPI certification for home energy diagnostics. Randy has been part of the NMC Energy Demonstration Center since its inception and has residential and commercial installations throughout Michigan.

Elizabeth Sonnabend, M.B.A., has 15 years of marketing experience working for various companies throughout northern Michigan.

Cody Sovis lives and loves bikes. He’s the manager at Einstein Cycles and enjoys road, cyclocross, mountain and fat bike racing for Einstein Racing, and is a volunteer for Norte! Youth Cycling. He is a former NMC student and Grand Valley State University alumnus. He believes in keeping it fun, tough and anchored in the simple mantra that’s kept him cycling; if you’re not smiling on the bike, you’re doing it wrong.

Wes Sovis is a former State Champion mountain bike racer, and holds a CAT 1 MTB USAC License. With years of experience riding, training, and racing, Wes has cultivated a fun and effective way to use indoor cycling to stay fit and healthy. His classes have a fun, positive atmosphere that encourages athletes of all fitness levels to reach their fullest potential. 

Holly Wren Spaulding, M.Phil.-creative writing, is an award-winning poet and writer whose work has appeared in magazines and journals. Her many awards include five Hopwood Awards, the Leelanau Poetry Prize, Shaman Drum Poetry Prize, and the Current Poetry Prize.

Maggie Sperry was one of the youngest people in the U.S. to achieve the level of Shodan, first-degree black belt in Judo. She has been a youth Judo instructor at NMC since 1989.

Charles St. Charles III is a nature and wildlife photographer and writer. His photography is displayed in private and public settings in the U.S., Africa, and Australia. He presents to photography classes, environmental groups, governors, and elementary school students. He works from Alaska to Asia, Canada to Hawaii, but his home is here in Michigan.

Sheila Stafford, M.A.-art/photography, has taught photography at NMC since 1980.

Jodi Rae Stahl, M.A., has over 20 years of teaching experience with TCAPS. Currently, she teaches at Blair Elementary. She enjoys math, majored in math and science, and has taught multiple levels.

Michael W. Stalker began his career as a teacher doing part-time work with tile. Michael has over 20 years of experience in the trade working in residential and commercial settings.

Anne Stanton, M.A.-journalism, writes for Northern Express, digging into a wide variety of investigative stories. She has worked as a reporter at the Sacramento Bee, the Traverse City Record-Eagle, and as a grant writer for the Michigan Land Use Institute. She has won numerous state and national awards. She also assists her husband, Doug Stanton, with the research of his books.

Doug Stanton, M.A. (Writers Workshop, University of Iowa) is a writer and co-founder of the Traverse City Film Festival. He is a contributing editor for Esquire, Men’s Journal, and Outside magazines, and author of the best-selling novel, In Harm’s Way (2002). His newest novel, The Horse Soldiers, will be published soon.

Steve Stanton, B.S., works with IBM on the worldwide deployment of a major software tool for internal and IBM Business Partner users. He developed classroom training in the U.S., Canada, France, and England.

Karen Stein, M.F.A.-creative writing, is the founder and producer of Here:Say Storytelling, a monthly, live storytelling show in Traverse City.

Kimberly Stevens, B.A., ACE certified aerobics instructor, has taught exercise classes since 1985. Kim teaches at Grand Traverse Resort and works for Western Michigan University.

William Allin Storrer, Ph.D., holds an engineering degree from Harvard, a Master’s from Boston University, and a Ph.D. from Ohio University in Comparative Arts. A world expert on the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright (author of two books) he has taught the history of western architecture to college and high school students.

Jeff Straw M.S., B.S.-electrical engineering, has been teaching computer technology courses at NMC since 2002. Previously, he was an engineer and manager for high-tech companies in Colorado. Jeff has recent A+, MOS, and MTA certifications.

Jerry Sura, M.A., is retired from teaching high school mathematics, GED, and English as a Second Language. He hikes and bikes the region and recently earned the Northern Naturalist Certificate from NMC Extended Education.

Joseph Symons, B.A., communications and broadcasting, worked in radio broadcasting from 2010-2015 as on-air talent, producer, and social media moderator. He is currently the event coordinator at Right Brain Brewery tasked with coordinating social media posts to showcase and promote unique qualities of the brewery and the brewery industry.

Teresa Szur, M.S.-education technology, has taught high school computer science for over 20 years. Her love of technology includes teaching Microsoft Office software, computer programming, and web page design.

Carol Taberski, M.B.A., B.S., DTM, worked at NMC for 33 years, earned the Microsoft Word MOS certificate, and has taught Microsoft Word since 2010.

Marcia Talicska is a certified Piloxing instructor and has her Personal Trainer Certificate through the American Council on Exercise (ACE). An athlete throughout her life, Marcia has taught classes at Yen Yoga and for She Skis/She Bikes. She has completed 15 half marathons in the last five years and participated in triathlons and other sporting events.

Keith Tampa, A.S., B.S., is a Physical Education Instructor at NMC.

Terry Tarnow, B.F.A.-weaving, is manager/buyer for the Dennos Museum Store at NMC. She has taught Jacki Sorensen Aerobics since 1991.

Preston Taylor, B.S., has been a law enforcement officer since 1996. He is a sergeant, field training supervisor, and defensive tactics instructor for the county and for NMC’s law enforcement program.

David Terrell, M.A., Professor Emeritus of Religion at NMC, taught in the Humanities discipline for 39 years, and served three years as Humanities Academic Chair.

Brad Thomas is a certified canine trainer who has been training dogs since 1977. He owns K9 Works providing canines for search and rescue, detection, and police work; and teaches personal dog handling.

Cole Thornton, a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu in Chicago, has worked in professional kitchens since 1999 including fine-dining Chicago restaurants and Little Nell Hotel in Aspen. He currently is the Executive Chef for Hagerty Center.

Katie Tomczyk, M.A. Special Ed/Physical Ed, holds certification in Kettlebell Training, Pilates, Spinning, and Yoga, and has been teaching HIIT at Yen Yoga and Fitness for 3 years. She loves teaching and participating in group fitness classes for the connection, fun, and challenge. She is a certified Barton Reading/Spelling system tutor and is a private tutor for students with Dyslexia. 

Michael Torre, M.A., art instructor at NMC, has taught college courses since 1990 in drawing, ceramics, and 2- and 3-D design, sculpture, and art appreciation. His work has been included in more than 100 national exhibitions, books, and magazines.

Elisabeth Treefon, M.A.-education has been a high school world languages teacher (French, German and Greek) for 23 years. Meditation has been part of her life for the past 35 years. She currently teaches meditation classes at both community colleges and in hospitals throughout Michigan. She enjoys extensive travels throughout the world.

Shirley Triplett, BRE, has been a stained glass artist since 1989. Employed at the Stained Glass Cabinet Company in Acme, she has taught classes for NMC since 2007.

Bruce Trudgen, B.S., is a retired automotive engineer. He has been teaching trailering classes and writing trailering articles for national magazines since 1978. He has owned six tow vehicles and ten trailers and has logged over 125,000 miles towing trailers all over North America.

Bryan Ulbrich is a winemaker and owner of Left Foot Charley Winery and Tasting Room in TC.

Nancy Vanderwall has been weaving baskets for nearly 20 years. She has studied the craft in Alaska, England, and Nantucket Island, weaving with a variety of natural fibers. She teaches classes and has a home workshop.

David Van Hammen, M.A., has lived and traveled in the Middle East and North Africa for more than 20 years. He is fluent in Yemeni and Egyptian Arabic. He was trained by the Peace Corps as an Arabic Language instructor.

Adam Van Houten, M.A.-curriculum and teaching, B.F.A.-art education, has been teaching photography and art classes for TCAPS since 2004. Photography is part of his art-making process, and he has been using Prezi in the classroom since 2009.

Alice VanZoeren, B.S.-natural history, has taught NMC-EES outdoor classes since 1993 and also works with local schools, the Leelanau Conservancy, and Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. She currently works year-round with the Great Lakes Piping Plover Recovery program.

John Velis, B.S.-mathematics, secondary certifications in mathematics and science, with over 25 years in education, information technology, web site design and is currently an instructor at NMC in Computer Information Technology. He is an active coach and mentor for various unmanned vehicle and robotics teams.

Anthony “Tony” Venticinque, B.S.-exercise science and psychology, actively competes in triathlons and is a USA Triathlon Certified Level 2 Coach and USA Cycling Certified Level 2 coach.

Todd Vipond is Director of the Dolce Ensemble of the Northwestern Michigan College Children’s Choir.

Paul Vittorelli, who studied Shotokan Karate in the 1980s, was introduced to the Filipino martial art of Kuntaw in 1994 and now holds a 4th-degree black belt in Kuntaw. He has instructed a variety of martial arts around the country and continues to study them.

Dorothy Vogel, M.M., currently teaches on the music faculty at NMC and has taught at Hope College and Kalamazoo Valley Community College. She holds degrees in piano performance from Oberlin Conservatory and Western Michigan University.

Hillary Voight, B.S., has been dancing since 1998. She has performed dance internationally and has been teaching creative movement, pre-ballet, and beginning ballet since 2013.

Rebecca Walters, B.A., K-12 certified, currently teaches American Foods, Global Foods, and Creative Living at West Middle School. She has been a part of TCAPS since 2008.

Garth Ward is a certified installer and dealer for Southwest Wind Power and is the owner of Michigan Wind Power, LLC, in Traverse City.

Anna Wassa, M.A.-education, is a certified NIA White Belt instructor. She teaches at Glen Lake Community Schools where she has included NIA instruction for both student and parent groups.

Kirk Waterstripe, M.S.-ecology, is the Science Lab Manager at NMC and an adjunct instructor of Plant Biology. He has been an active organic gardener and compost maker since 1990.

John Watkins, B.A., is a business consultant and strategist with more than 30 years experience. As an entrepreneur and self-employed business owner, he knows the importance of self-promotion. An early adopter of LinkedIn, he has helped clients, business associates and friends build their profiles. He serves on a committee that stages LinkedIn events in TC and is a founder of the LinkedIn users group, TC Professionals.

David Weaver is a certified Desktop Support Specialist responsible for maintenance of NMC’s University Center Computers.

Chris Wendel, B.A-economics, serves the Grand Traverse Region as a Business Consultant and Lender with Northern Initiatives, a private community development corporation providing rural entrepreneurs with access to capital, information, and markets. With a background in retail, marketing, and manufacturing, Chris has worked with hundreds of Michigan small businesses. He is also a contributing writer to the Traverse City Business News and

Mykl Werth has been performing and teaching professionally since 1983 focusing on partner dancing and modern dance as well as country, folk, clogging, Irish, show, and theatrical dancing.

Jacob Wheeler, M.F.A.- creative nonfiction, is an independent journalist, editor and teacher. He is the faculty advisor for NMC’s White Pine Press student newspaper, and edits and publishes two community newspapers, the Glen Arbor Sun and the Betsie Current.

Mimi Wheeler is the former owner/operator of Grocer’s Daughter Chocolates in Leelanau County, featuring organic and natural ingredients. In her retirement, she continues to embrace chocolate and enjoys sharing its story and tastes with others.

Bill White is an avid barbecue aficionado and has spent years developing his skills cooking everything on a backyard charcoal grill.

Holly White holds a degree in psychology and works in the Custom Book Publishing department at Jenkins Group, a local self-publishing services company. She assist aspiring authors and self-publishers from all over the world in making their manuscript or idea into a book. 

Kent Wiejaczka, M.A., is a licensed builder and an award-winning artist specializing in realistic painting and drawing.

Stephanie Wiitala, A.S., is a graduate of Great Lakes Culinary Institute. She is currently employed by Black Star Farms where she is a pastry chef and also their on-site wedding and event coordinator.

Sarah Wilcoxen, B.A., is a teacher at Woodland School in Traverse City. She enjoys cooking for her family and has taught children’s cooking classes.

Elizabeth (Betsy) Williams, former travel executive and consultant, has more than 30 years of travel agency experience. She has traveled extensively and organized travel for many individuals, business travelers, and travel groups.

Jerry Williams served 8 years in the US Navy and was a professor at the Great Lakes Maritime Academy at NMC for 30+ years. He has been a member of the Grand Traverse Bay Sail and Power Squadron for 25 years and served as Treasurer and Squadron Education Officer for 6 years.

John Robert Williams, TC native and NMC alumnus, has more than 33 years of experience as a full-time commercial and portrait photographer. He has taught photography to many students in his studio, at NMC, and lectured at universities coast-to-coast.

Wendy Williams, B.A.-social work, has been deaf since birth. She has tutored students in American Sign Language for over 20 years. She is an advocate for the Deaf Community and hosts monthly gatherings of ASL students with the Deaf Community.

Janine Winkler, B.S.-education, has taught elementary school with GTACS for 14 years. She is an avid writer of poetry, memoirs, and self-reflections. Her published works include freelance articles in NMC Magazine, MACUL magazine for teachers, and the Record-Eagle.

Kristi Wodek, B.A., M.F.A, has been teaching art and crafts in both the traditional classroom setting as well as art centers for over 20 years. She currently teaches for TCAPS.

Glenn Wolff, B.F.A., began his career as an illustrator for such clients as the New York Times. He currently concentrates on fine art and illustration having worked with numerous authors including Stephanie Mills, John Gierach and Jerry Dennis. His mixed media fine art has been collected and shown privately and in public galleries. His work with environmental organizations and local groups in the area is legendary.

Richard Wolin, M.B.A., is project manager for NMC Contract Training. He has extensive education in organizational development and ten years’ experience in manufacturing. Richard has extensive knowledge of teamwork training and facilitation, interpersonal skills training, and customer and employee satisfaction research. He is a member of the International Society of Performance Improvement (ISPI).

Mary Jo Zazueta, B.A., is an editor, designer, and book shepherd. She has extensive knowledge of book publishing and has been speaking on the subject for 10 years. In 1994, she established To the Point Solutions to help writers throughout the country achieve their publishing goals.

Erik Zehender, M.B.A., is the Innkeeper at Fountain Point Resort and founder of the Leelanau Rowing Club.

Doug Zernow, B.G.S., is a sixth-degree black belt in Yoshokai Aikido. He is also head of his own advertising and marketing communications firm. He has taught at NMC since 1984.

Part-time instructors wanted

NMC Extended Education seeks part-time instructors to teach short courses in the following areas:

  • NIA exercise
  • Spanish
  • Calligraphy
  • Home repair/maint.

Teaching degree not required. Looking for enthusiastic presenters with content knowledge, passion, and willingness to share. Email resume and letter with interest areas to before May 27, 2016.

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