Staff

Home » About Us » Staff

If you’re interested in joining our team, please email your inquiry, along with a resume to admin@wildabundance.net.

Forest at Wild Abundance Amy DeCamp

Amy, Online Class Coordinator

Online Class Coordinator

Amy (she/her) joined the Wild Abundance team in January 2018, where she currently manages online class coordination and student support. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University at Albany, SUNY, where her understanding of complex structures was rooted. This study, along with an awareness of the climate crisis, inspired Amy to transition from a “traditional” career path to one where her work aligned with her environmental values. Since that time, she’s worked on farms and for nonprofits and farmer-support organizations throughout Western North Carolina. Now, Amy is privileged to support Wild Abundance’s mission of Earth-based education and community skill-building. Outside of Wild Abundance, Amy enjoys growing and arranging cut flowers, journaling, catching live music, tarot reading and family time.

Forest at Wild Abundance Chloe Lieberman

Chloe Lieberman

Instructor for Online Gardening School, Co-Visionary, Copywriter

Chloe (she/her) is passionate about nurturing a more beautiful, reciprocal, respectful relationship between humans and the rest of the living world. She is the co-director of the Online Gardening School, and also writes for Wild Abundance’s blog, newsletter, and website. In addition, Chloe jumps in to help out with management and strategy as the co-visionary for the business as a whole; she and Natalie have been working together for over 8 years. Chloe has been passionate about food and farming for over 20 years, with a special love for the interactions between human communities and their food systems. She studied Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems at UC Santa Cruz, has learned and practiced gardening in five countries, and continues to feel delighted every time she serves a homegrown meal to friends and family. Along with working at Wild Abundance, Chloe gives her life energy to growing food, parenting, community care, lifelong learning, and maintaining meaningful relationships.

Dane Mainella

Dane Mainella

Perennial Caretaker/ Apprenticeship Perennial Teacher

Dane joined Wild Abundance in February of 2022. He is also a gardener, nurseryman, and poet. Originally from Rhode Island, Dane studied mechanical engineering and English at University of Pennsylvania. After college his main focus was art, living and working with artist friends in Brooklyn. During this time he was a filmmaker, photographer, and writer. After becoming disillusioned by big city life, Dane rode his bicycle across the country from New York to Florida to California, working at organic farms along the way. He then worked at a nonprofit urban farm in Brownsville in Brooklyn, where he helped to rehabilitate dilapidated community gardens and orchards. He then apprenticed at Red Fern Farm with Tom Wahl and Kathy Dice, who have one of the most established food forests of chestnut, pawpaw, persimmon, asian pears and walnut trees in North America. He most recently has worked at Bullock’s Permaculture Homestead and Nursery on Orcas Island, Washington, where his main focus was on orcharding and nursery work.

Kaylee Walters

Kaylee Walters

Chaos Manager/ Natalie’s Personal Assistant

Originally from Florida, Kaylee (she/her) joined the Wild Abundance team in early 2021, after moving to NC. At the time, she didn’t realize how much of an impact the mountains, rivers, and the people who inhabit such sacred land would have on her life. Now it’s hard for her to picture ever leaving.

When she applied for the job, she had never heard of Wild Abundance, but immediately felt aligned with and excited about their mission (and especially excited about working in an earth-centered space). From a young age, Kaylee has loved caring for families, helping them to function smoothly and with more joy. As the Chaos Manager, Kaylee gets to do just that by helping with the day-to-day of Natalie’s life (and Hazel too), so Natalie can do all the cool and amazing things she does. Kaylee is filled with gratitude that the beautiful Wild Abundance homestead is where she gets to come to work throughout the week. When she’s not working you can find her being a hermit with a good book or her journal, practicing jiu jitsu, or at an ecstatic dance. Outside of work, movement arts and words are the pillars of her life.

Forest at Wild Abundance Keenan Phillips

Keenan Phillips

Tiny House Academy Director and Content Customer Support

Keenan (he/him) has been tinkering and building since he could walk. In his early childhood his parents were building a house, so he saw the many phases of construction and became enamored with the process. So much so that touring the houses of neighborhoods being developed was a great joy and regular activity. An older neighborhood friend taught him to repair bicycles. As a teenager he enjoyed skateboarding, but skate parks were sparse and far so he started building his own ramps where he learned many structural engineering concepts first hand. He managed to get 2 years into an engineering degree before realizing he didn’t actually want to do that, and got back to his roots by working in a bike shop as a mechanic for several years, and then getting back into construction from there.

He had always dreamt of building his own home and finally embarked on his “not-so-tiny” house on wheels (it’s a double and a half wide…) in 2014. This led to the accidental beginning of his business KSPhillips Contracting where he has built several tiny and larger homes as well as small, medium, and large renovation projects for friends and neighbors who realized his abilities. In 2020, he started teaching for the Wild Abundance Tiny House Academy and in January 2022 started helping with leading its direction. He also teaches the foundation built house in the In-Person Tiny House Build classes. When he’s not doing any of the above he’s likely in his garage working on his rally race car or out in the woods (legally) racing and potentially becoming a part of the scenery somewhere in the country.

Melanie Gnau

Melanie Gnau

Digital Marketing Coordinator

Melanie (she/her) is the Digital Marketing Coordinator at Wild Abundance and joined the team in August of 2022. Melanie holds a Master of Science in Library Science from UNC-Chapel Hill where she developed a love of research, instruction and information literacy. In her past lives, Melanie has lived in an Airstream, owned an online vintage clothing store, been a librarian, a writer, an artist and for one long, weird weekend, Melanie ran a hot dog stand. Most of all, Melanie enjoys the creativity and content creation that digital marketing brings and appreciates the warm, nurturing environment of Wild Abundance. In her free time, she reads trashy romance novels, hangs out with her dog and chickens, tends her Indigenous foods garden and fixes up her small, fixer upper home. Melanie is a proud member of the Isleta Pueblo tribe. You can follow Melanie’s work at Wild Abundance on their Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest

Forest at Wild Abundance Natalie Bogwalker, Director

Natalie Bogwalker

Founder and Director of Wild Abundance; Instructor for Permaculture & Gardening, Carpentry & Natural Building, Homesteading, Foraging & Medicine Making, Women’s Empowerment, and Primitive Skills.

Natalie (she/her) is the visionary behind Wild Abundance, as well as the founder, director, and a primary instructor for many classes. She also dreams up new classes, is a big part of curriculum development, manages the campus, designs buildings, and takes beautiful photos for the website. Natalie is passionate about teaching and sharing skills to help all kinds of people live in an empowered and Earth-centered way. This includes her staff, and the skills of running a cooperative and sustainable values-based business.  

In 2008 Natalie founded the Firefly Gathering, an earthskills gathering focused on bringing people together to teach and learn. Under Natalie’s management, Firefly became the most well-attended event of its kind in the country, and the only one that was led by a woman. Natalie felt a strong desire to see the impact of sharing these skills with people throughout the year, not just at a once-a-year event, so in 2010 she founded Wild Abundance. 

At its inception, the school was a one-woman show with the goal of teaching people important skills (and earning enough of a living to keep doing that). As Wild Abundance has grown and matured, Natalie has embraced her role as a leader and an ecologically and socially minded business person (this has been challenging, given her anti establishment, anti-capitalist, and anarchist background). She now works collaboratively with her beloved staff to create and innovate so that Wild Abundance can be wildly successful at embodying and spreading its core values and growing its influence as an inspiring force of positive change in the world.  

Natalie and her family live at the Wild Abundance homestead campus in the Southern Appalachians. She balances her time between managing the logistics of the school, teaching, tending the garden, building, playing with her daughter and partner, visiting wild places, connecting with her community, and basking in the beauty of nature. Click here to read more about Natalie’s life and adventures.

Nicole Peterson

Nicole Peterson

Operations Manager

Nicole (she/her) joined Wild Abundance in the spring of 2022. She moved from Minnesota, where she was a civil engineer and project manager, with her husband and two children in 2020. In 2021, she received her Permaculture Design Certificate online from Earth Activist Training and became re-energized as she contemplated delivering projects that better modeled nature’s ecosystems for building community, health and resilience. As she navigates this career pivot, she has been grateful to serve Wild Abundance. Nicole’s experience in the Wildcrafting and Medicine Making Intensive in 2021 left such an impression on her that she wanted to be part of the team. Outside of being a wife and mother, she finds passion being outdoors, among the elements and the plants. Nicole also enjoys playing in the kitchen, especially with medicine making.

Parham Barber

Parham Barber

Student Services Coordinator

Parham (she/her) is the Student Services coordinator at Wild Abundance. She started her life with Wild Abundance as a student in the Permaculture Design and Earthskills Nine Month Immersion Program in 2020 while she was also simultaneously growing a baby. At the end of the nine months, right before she was about to give birth, her class planted an orchard on her land. The orchard fulfilled her dream of having an abundance of perennial foods right outside her door for her family and her community. Parham enjoys working with the students at Wild Abundance because “folks who seek out our classes tend to be ready for new ideas and eager for personal growth.” Parham spends her time gardening, writing poetry, playing music, singing, growing tempeh, practicing qigong, foraging, being in nature and mothering.

Forest at Wild Abundance Tyler Lavenburg

Tyler Lavenburg

Assistant Site Manager

Tyler (he/him) is a life-long student of many things. Over the past 15 years, he has been devoted to learning and teaching core skills of traditional living, from wild foods and basketry to hide tanning, bow-making, flint knapping, pottery, and most any other natural materials he can get his hands on. He is a maker at heart. 

While teaching and living these traditional skills, Tyler has worked as a carpenter and earth-scaper for many years. He has built barns, houses, remodels, historical building replications, and pretty much all things shelter. He really strives to offer these skills in service to the community, empowering more people to take shelter into their own hands. 

Photographers

Wild Abundance is fortunate to have worked with many talented and lovely professional photographers over the years. We’re listing them here, in order to honor their work and credit their incredible contribution to our school.

Jeff Wales

Merideth Garrigan – A Spot in Time Photography

Jenny Tenny

Go and Flow Photos

Alivia Ruiz – Dulce Ruiz Designs

Natalie Bogwalker

Laura Ruby

Taylor Blake

Mason McDonald – Art Before Comfort