Elaine Sheff, Co-Director
The author of several books on herbal medicine and healing, clinical herbalist Elaine Sheff has been passionate about sharing herbal knowledge for over 25 years. Her latest book is Naked: Botanical Recipes for Vibrant Skin and Healthy Hair. Elaine is the Co-Director of Green Path Herb School, located in Missoula, MT, where she strives to inspire and empower students and clients to remember their connection to the earth, the plants and their own healing process. As a certified Instructor of the Natural Family Planning and Fertility Awareness Methods, Elaine has helped many couples to avoid or achieve pregnancy naturally. An artist and writer, Elaine has written numerous articles about her family’s journey with epilepsy and a special needs child. You can often find her bent over an herb in her garden or marveling at small flowers in mountain meadows with her husband and sons.
Elaine’s workshops have been featured at conferences including the Traditions in Western Herbalism Conference, Montana Herb Gathering, Northwest Herb Symposium, Midwest Women’s Herbal Conference, Spokane Herbal Faire, the Ecoexpo and the Mountain West Herb Gathering.
John Goicovich, Co-Director
John first started working with plants in the early 1990s on the coast of California. It was not until moving to the Rocky Mountains in 1993 that his interest became a lifetime commitment. John’s first love of herbs was always the connection between plants and people and the personal involvement in making one’s own remedies. John is a graduate of both the Rocky Mountain Center for Botanical Studies and the Southwest School of Botanical Medicine. He is the co-founder of Meadowsweet Herbs.
Dr. Ian Nesbit, Anatomy and Physiology
Ian Nesbit received his Doctorate in Naturopathic medicine from Bastyr University in 1994. He completed two post doctorate residencies in physical medicine and cardiology. He was primary professor of cardiology at Bastyr University for three years and lectures internationally on emergency medicine and public health. Dr Nesbit served in the Air Force Reserve and moved from Billings to Missoula after returning from Baghdad in 2003.
Greg Peters, Botany; Pharmacognosy and Plant Constituents
Greg lives in Missoula and works as an adjunct instructor of Biology for Missoula College UM and The University of Montana. Greg loves exploring the open spaces and mountainsides around western Montana, finding flowers, birds, and the untamed wildness. Greg enjoys working in his garden and trying new combinations of locally grown food.
Susan Teitelman, Nutrition
Susan Teitelman is a Certified Holistic Nutritionist and herbalist in Missoula, Montana. Susan is committed to natural healing by putting the body, mind and spirit into balance through the use of herbs, supplements, and constructive changes in personal lifestyle. Recognizing the connection between a healthy environment, a sustainable food system, and personal health, Susan does her part to create a relationship between body and earth through nutrition education, wildcrafting, and organic gardening. Susan holds a bachelor’s degree from Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, a Certificate in Holistic Nutrition from the Wellspring School for Healing Arts in Portland, Oregon, and a Certificate in Herbalism from Green Path Herb School in Missoula. When she is not practicing holistic health care, Susan enjoys hiking, biking, traveling, cooking, and comedy.
Michael Billington, Permaculture
Born and raised in Montana, Michael puts great value into the soil that holds his roots. His educational background includes studies at the University of Montana where he took Wilderness and Civilization, a year long project based learning intensive that travels across Montana to study conservation, land management, and human-landscape relations. This was augmented with the study of Agriculture, Ecology, and Indigenous Cultures. Beginning with an intensive study at The Woodbine Center for Ecology and Indigenous Values, he has been studying and practicing Permaculture for 6 years. He has studied permaculture with Andrew Goodheart, Michael Pilarski, Marisha Auerbach, and Sepp Holzer. He specializes in perennial vegetables, food forestry, and terraforming. After managing the largest hugelculture farm in America, that featured over 3 acres of constructed ponds, he has moved to Hot Springs Montana to start a perennial agriculture nursery and garlic farm. Currently apprenticing under David Ronniger of The Native Seed Foundation, he will soon take over the business to provide wholesale native seeds and custom seed processing. Additionally, his professional services include consultations on landscape management and agricultural practices. A proud father, he feels his work is to create patches of resilient edible forests that can provide food, medicine, and propagation material for the generations who will inherent the stewardship responsibilities of our currently overtaxed landscapes.
Heather Ellsworth L.Ac. MAcOM,
Chinese Herbs and Medicine
Heather is a licensed and board-certified acupuncturist, herbalist and shiatsu practitioner in Missoula MT. Heather was inspired by her mother, a nurse-midwife, at an early age and has been interested in medicine and women’s health ever since. She graduated from the University of Montana with a degree in Biology with a Botany emphasis. Then continued her studies in western herbalism with Michael Moore at the Southwest School of Botanical Medicine and became a Certified Clinical Herbalist in 2003. In 2009 she graduated from the Oregon College of Oriental Medicine with a masters degree in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine; she is also a Board certified Chinese herbalist. After finishing her studies at OCOM she completed a year and a half post-graduate training in Portland, OR with Dr. Hong Jin DAOM, M.D.(P.R.C.) specializing in women’s health, infertility, and pregnancy support. Along with seeing a variety of health conditions in her private practice she also created “Mama Group Acupuncture” which provided group acupuncture specifically for fertility, pregnancy, and postpartum women at the Alma Midwifery Education and Movement Center, in Portland. Heather recently moved back to Missoula, MT with her husband and son in order to be near their family and enjoy this beautiful community. In her free time she loves collecting and growing plant medicines and dancing.
Mindy Opper, Ayurveda Herbs and Medicine
Mindy Opper has been a Physicians Assistant for 25 years, practicing family medicine with an emphasis in women’s health care. She graduated from UofM with a degree in biology and attended PA school at the Medex Program, University of Washington from 1987-1989. Mindy worked at Partnership Health Center, urgent cares in Missoula and Billings, Planned Parenthood and Blue Mt Clinic. In 2009, Mindy began to feel the need to expand her practice skills and was intrigued by Ayurveda, the ancient Indian system of healing and health. She attended the Mt. Madonna College of Ayurveda in Watsonville, Ca., commuting monthly weekends for 7 months. She obtained her diploma as an Ayurvedic Health Counselor in 2010. In early 2011, Mindy opened her own private practice, Prana Family Practice, within the Health and Healing Center at the Red Willow Center in order to practice a more integrative model of care. Here she combines both western allopathic care along with ayurvedic care for those who are interested. She also works collaboratively with all the practitioners at the Red Willow Center providing team based care for those seeking complementary care along with allopathy.