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Wild Herb Weekend 2024
Plant, Spirit Medicine
Teacher Bios


Our Keynote, Robin Rose Bennett, is a storyteller, writer, and herbalist. She has been offering classes in WiseWoman Healing Ways: Herbal Medicine and EarthSpirit Teachings since 1986 - at herb conferences, festivals, clinics, medical and nursing schools, and most joyously, outside with the plants. Robin Rose shares herbal medicine with gratitude for the loving generosity of the plants and the magic, mystery, and beauty of the web of life. She is on the faculty of the Arbor-Vitae School of Traditional Herbalism, and has been on the faculty of the New York Open Center since 1990. She is the author of two meditation MP3’s and the books: Healing Magic - A Green Witch Guidebook to Conscious Living, The Gift of Healing Herbs - Plant Medicines and Home Remedies for a Vibrantly Healthy Life,  A Young Green Witch’s Guide to Plant Magic - Rituals and Recipes from Nature, and A Green Witch's Pocket Book of Wisdom-Big Little Life Tips. 

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Marc Williams 


Ethnobiologist Marc Williams has taught hundreds of classes to thousands of people about plants, humans, other life forms and their interface. His training includes a B.A. in Environmental Studies/Sustainable Agriculture from Warren Wilson College with a minor in Business and a M.A. in Appalachian Studies/Sustainable Development from Appalachian State University with a minor in Planning/Geography. He has over 20 years of experiences working at various restaurants, farms, and travels throughout 30 countries in Central/North/South America, Europe and all 50 states in the USA. More information can be found at and

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Cindi Quay, Traditional Herbalist, descendent of the Menominee Nation, and Founder of Cindi’s Sacred Garden, located in Black Mountain NC, has been practicing her respected Native American Traditions with our plant nation for most of her life. Opening herself to being a Student with Nature, Cindi has learned “hands on” to identify many herbs during all growing seasons, and for greater than 30 years, she has traveled around the USA to identify many different healing plants. Cindi went into business full-time in 1997 and has developed organic and natural Skin Food skin products and Fresh Earth Medicines. As an instructor, Cindi teaches many groups about herbs, growing, connecting to and healing oneself through our plant nation. She has deep knowledge of not only the plant allies but of other healing modalities that can be incorporated into daily healing and deeper understanding of our vital connection to Earth Mother. Cindi teaches with Native American Spiritual groups, Indigenous Tribes, Woman Gatherings, Holistic Practitioners, Garden Clubs, Plant Savers groups and school groups


Todd Elliott

Todd Elliott's studies in biodiversity and interrelationships in nature have taken him to remote corners of the world to explore tropical rainforests, deserts, temperate forests, beaches, and high mountains on six continents. He is particularly interested in edible and medicinal mushrooms and plants and their importance to humans. Todd is an author of the Timber Press field guide Mushrooms of the Southeast and has published academic literature on various aspects of ecology and taxonomy. Todd received his undergraduate degree in interpretive natural history from Warren Wilson College (USA) and his PhD in ecology from the University of New England (Australia). He enjoys sharing his research and knowledge of the natural world through presentations, workshops, and consultations for many different organizations in the US and abroad. To read more about Todd's research, check out his website:


Robin Suggs

Before joining Appalachian Sustainable Development’s Agroforestry Program Robin was the sole proprietor of MoonBranch Botanicals, a grower and producer of native medicinal plant materials along with other non-timber forest products in the small community of Yellow Creek in far western North Carolina. His company supplied the natural products and medicines industry with high quality native raw bulk botanicals produced in their natural habitats. In 1996 Robin founded and served as executive director of the Yellow Creek Botanical Institute, a 501(c)3 corporation based in Graham County North Carolina. In this position, he was responsible for the conceptualization, development and management of a non-profit research and development organization utilizing native botanical resources as tools for sustainable economic development in western North Carolina.


Stephanie Smith 


I have 500 hours of yoga certification, along with certification in Yin Yoga, Chair Yoga and Yoga for Addiction and Recovery. I am in the midst of completing an additional certification in Kundalini Yoga. I am a Reiki Master. I studied reiki with Diane Stein, the author of Essential Reiki. I am committed to exposing as many people to the energy body, yoga, and reiki as we all have the possibility of connecting with universal life force energy to spread love and healing. I also studied in a year-long program with the Ancestral Knowledge School in a program of self-discovery designed to awaken the shaman within. I have a Ph.D. in Sociology. I teach and conduct research on emotions, inequality, and education when I am not teaching yoga.  ERYT200, RYT500, YACEP


Jim Hamilton

Dr. Jim Hamilton is an NC State County Extension Director based in Boone, NC. He has a background in forestry and has been working with private forest landowners in the western mountains of North Carolina for almost 20 years. Over the last 10+ years, he has provided workshops and demonstrations on the planting and management of ginseng as a forest farming crop. He's been so inspired by the plant and its culture and history in Appalachia that he even penned a fiction novel set under the backdrop of the ginseng trade.


Sam Taylor

I've been in organic horticulture and design consulting for 20 years. I've been working in herbal and cannabis laboratory extraction for 10 years. I've built run and consulted many labs and farms throughout the country, looking to vertically integrate farms and brands in an ecological way.


Jeannie Dunn

Jeannie Dunn is the owner of Red Moon Herbs.


Tremaine ‘Abenaa’ Moore


I'm Abenaa, and I'm passionate about creating natural skin and hair care products that are deeply rooted in West African tradition and heritage. I'm originally from Johns Island and now call North Charleston my home. My product line features items made with the finest organic ingredients, including 100% organic shea butter sourced from West African shea trees, essential oils, and carrier oils. My craft is like a natural calling, guided by my ancestors. Coming from a lineage of farmers and one of the largest Black farming families on Johns Island, I was raised to rely on nature for healing and nourishment. As an early adult, complications related to my rare lymphatic condition, Klippel Trenauny Weber Syndrome, worsened, and it brought me back to my ancestors’ connection with nature, which became central in my healing. The results were transformative, with fewer hospital stays and my affected limb healing itself. The healing process involved not just my body but also my mind and soul. It was during this period that I decided to create my own lotions and shampoos, which received overwhelming praise from friends and family. Encouraged by their feedback, I decided to return to school, and earn a degree in science with a focus in chemistry. This educational background, combined with ancestral knowledge, allowed me to create my small business, Naturally Geechee #bodytributeskincare. When customers use my products, I want them to experience the high energy of healing, joy, and the care that goes into crafting each item. I want them to feel like they are using something rich and exclusive, created just for them. They can trust that the ingredients are natural and safe, without any concerns about chemical additives


Abby Artemisia’s interest in the botanical world first began as a child–climbing trees, hiking in the woods and tromping through creeks. This love of nature led her to a degree in Botany  from Miami University. Abby believes that many modern ailments are a result of not enough time spent in nature. Her favorite activity is to take people out in the woods and teach them about the plants that grow all around them.


Doug Elliott

Whether he's pointing out poison ivy, pontificating on poke sallet, crooning about creasy greens, jiving about ginseng, or extolling the virtues of dandelions, herbalist, author and storyteller, Doug Elliott is known for his lively presentations as well as his broad, practical, scientific and cultural knowledge of the area's many useful wild plants.


Lori Jenkins is an Asheville-area Traditional Herbalist, Wildcrafter, and practicing Kitchen Witch of over 20 years. She is the owner and creatress behind Sister of Mother Earth, LLC, a small-batch herbal business focusing on herbal tonics, wildcrafted potions and elixirs. Lori creates magick in the kitchen to share with the community around her. Her classes often include practical applications of kitchen witchcraft and medicine, informed by many great teachers and herbalists in turn.

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Mimi Prunella Hernandez 


Mimi is a renowned author of the National Geographic Herbal and a dedicated advocate for traditional and professional herbal practices. With a wealth of knowledge, unwavering dedication, and genuine love for herbalism, she has dedicated her life's work to promoting herbal pathways. Mimi holds a master's degree in herbal medicine and is a clinical herbalist, as well as a Registered Herbalist with the American Herbalists Guild. In 2023, Mimi was honored with a Botanical Excellence Award from the American Botanical Council for her role as a Community Builder. Her herbal expertise is deeply rooted in the traditions of her Colombian and Mexican grandmothers, who inspired wisdom of Latin American Folk Herbalism and Curanderismo. Alongside her husband Terry, Mimi co-manages The PonderLand Native Plant Sanctuary and encourages others to create similar plant sanctuaries in their own communities. Mimi finds joy in practicing kitchen herbalism and inspires others to explore the healing power of plants.

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Renee Crozier, RH(AHG)

Renee is a Registered Herbalist and a clinical practitioner, specializing in cancer and traditional healing. Her focus is bioregional herbalism, conservation, and addressing the needs of underserved communities. Trained as a traditional healer, she spends time in several countries each year furthering her practice. She is passionate about balancing traditional and modern
methods of healing. She is the founder of the Four Elements School of Traditional Medicine.


Mary Ellen Lough 

Mary Ellen Lough is a poetry therapist, writer, and wildcrafter raising children, rabbits, and a lot of herbs in a beloved old southern Appalachian farmhouse. She is the owner of Appalachian Sacred Smoke, locally grown and wildcrafted herb bundles for everyday ritual use and sacred ceremonies.


Dr. Jeanine Davis is an associate professor and extension specialist in the Department of Horticultural Science at NC State University. She is located at a research and extension center in western NC near Asheville.  For over 35 years, she has researched medicinal herbs, forest farming, new crops, vegetables, and organic agriculture and shared her knowledge on these topics with farmers and gardeners across the country. Her current efforts are focused on native woodland botanicals, hops, truffles, Chinese medicinal herbs, and hemp. She is the lead author of the book “Growing and Marketing Ginseng, Goldenseal and Other Woodland Medicinals”. Jeanine and her family operate Our Tiny Farm where they raise and board mini-donkeys.

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Henna Wallace


Hennas photo and bio below  — 

Henna Wallace is an herbalist and post-partum-oriented doula based in Valle Crucis, NC. She gravitates towards the messier parts of life--the edges--like birth, post-partum, and first-aid. Her pursuit of herbal experience has led her to the Blue Ridge School of Herbal Medicine, countless fields and hedges, and most recently, to clinical training at David Winston's Center for Herbal Studies. You can find her in the Watauga River, or at  

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