Staff & Presenters


Brian Thomas Swimme Ph.D

Brian Thomas Swimme is a professor at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco, where he teaches evolutionary cosmology to graduate students in the Philosophy, Cosmology and Consciousness program. He has many published works which includes The Universe Story written with Thomas Berry, The Journey of the Universe co-authored with Mary Evelyn Tucker. In his  most recent book Cosmogenesis: An Unveiling of the Expanding Universe Brian tells the story of the Universe while simultaneously telling the story of the storyteller.

Diarmuid O'Murchu

A member of the Sacred Heart Missionary Order, and a graduate of Trinity College, Dublin Ireland, is a social psychologist most of whose working life has been in social ministry, as a couple’s counsellor, in bereavement work, AIDS-HIV counselling, and, in more recent times, with homeless people and refugees. As a workshop leader and group facilitator, he has worked in Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, The Philippines, Thailand, India, Peru and in several African countries, facilitating programmes on Adult Faith Development. His best-known books include Quantum Theology (1996 – revised in 2004),  Ancestral Grace (2008), and others. He now lives in Dublin,  Ireland.

Rev. Jim Conlon PhD

Former Director and Professor of spirituality, Holy Name University, Sophia Center in Culture and Spirituality, Oakland, CA.
Jim was presented the 2013 Thomas Berry Award by Mary Evelyn Tucker, senior lecturer and senior research scholar at Yale University and trustee of the Thomas Berry Foundation. This award was initiated in 1999 to recognize those instrumental in carrying on the work and legacy of Thomas Berry. This award honored Conlon’s more than two decades of leadership as director of Holy Names University Sophia Center. Visit Jim online at

Steve Martin

Steve is an astronomer, educator, and author who has taught astronomy, physics and consciousness studies at colleges, universities and learning centers across the US for nearly three decades. He is currently Director of the Deeptime Leadership Program at the Deeptime Network. Steve frequently offered experiential workshops on stargazing, astronomy and personal transformation at observatories, learning centers and other popular venues around the world. You can learn more about his work at and at

Theresa Linehan, SNDdeN, MA, MSN

Theresa is an educator, nurse practitioner, Certified in Diabetes Care/Education, Healing Touch, and Clinical Aromatherapy practitioner. Former Springbank Team member, Fall 2011 – Summer 2020. Ministered in California in education, nursing, and outreach to the agricultural workers in the area of Diabetes. Theresa is of Mohican heritage; Stockbridge-Munsee Band of the Mohicans, reservation in Wisconsin. Theresa enjoys drum-making, native/leather crafts and is committed to living consciously for Earth’s sustainability

Linda Scozik SSJ-TOSF

A member of the Sisters of St. Joseph of the Third Order of St. Francis, Linda brings her contemplative heart to the creative process of basket making. She is a family nurse practitioner, and spiritual guide. She collaborated to establish a day program in Milwaukee for women in the street-based sex trade. She shares time with the women who now have a pathway to find hope, resources and support to live healthier, safer lives.

Gillian Romano

Gillian embraced her love of arts from a young age. She graduated from College with a degree in fine arts. Her love for nature as her teacher, drew her to the writings of Thomas Berry and Brian Thomas Swimme, seeing the parallel between the creative process and the journey of the Universe. For a few years, she continued her artistic process with Mary Southard CSJ as guide. Gillian is now the facilitator of the ‘Come and Paint’ retreats at The Well Spirituality Center, La Grange Park, IL.

Barbara Moore, Certified Somatic Coach, Certified Business Coach

Barbara is a NC State Certified Business Coach and Certified Somatic Coach. She works with individuals and groups to assist them in deepening their intuition, making connections between body, mind, and spirit. Engaging with Barbara will help you to sincerely awaken your presence, and own your voice. You will walk your walk with calm confidence in this wild, beautiful, messy changing world. Her laughter invites openness and ease. She is delighted to be invited to share her work at Springbank.

Richard B. Guess MEd

Executive Director of a community mental health center, a native South Carolinian with 25 years of experience in the field of human services. Former Springbank Board member. Being of Cherokee heritage, Richard brings a deep respect for all life.

Elizabeth Grund, MEd

Dream work got hold of Elizabeth in 1987 when a friend told her that her mom was in a dream group.   She then attended a workshop on the fundamentals and the group began meeting regularly.  For more than 30 years, dream work has been her passion.

Elizabetbh has been employed and volunteers in community organizing, state government and law of office administration, and church leadership.  

Along side the “works” on her resume, Elizabeth’s journey has been informed by experiences with parental alcoholism, ADHD, bereavement, adoption, childbirth and parenting, depression, Jungian psychology, Unitarian Universalism, Enneagram study and many generours teachers, not the least important of whom are her husband and daughters.

In 2011, Elizabeth graduated from the Institute for Dream Studies and joyfully engages with individual and group dream work, presentations and workshops.

Claire Anderson

Claire holds a master’s degree in European History from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee and a Doctorate in Ministry from the Catholic Theological Union in Chicago. A fourth-generation Polish American, she has traveled to Poland several times and is the author of Seasons of the Slavic Soul : A quest for an Authentic Polish Spirituality.
Claire currently serves as the Executive Director of Siena Retreat Center.

Miriam MacGillis OP

Co-founder of Genesis Farm where she teaches and practices biodynamic methods of agriculture, which are in tune with the natural rhythms of Earth. Miriam teaches and coordinates programs on the work of Thomas Berry and the New Cosmology

Jo-Ann Iannotti, OP

Jo-Ann Iannotti, OP is a Dominican Sister of Hope, recently retired as Art and Spirituality Coordinator at Wisdom House Retreat and Conference Center in Litchfield, CT.Her ministries have included teaching in New York and New Jersey, Associate Director of Vocations, script writer for the Office of Radio and Television of the Archdiocese of Hartford and reporter and photographer for The Catholic Transcript newspaper in that archdiocese. Jo-Ann is a poet and photographer publishing her work in national and international magazines. 

A native of Paterson, New Jersey, she holds a B.A. in Education from Mount Saint Mary College, Newburgh, NY and an M. A. in Theology from Fordham University, Bronx, NY.

Jo-Ann lectures frequently on the 14th Century English mystic, Julian of Norwich, as well as the inter-relationship between art and spirituality. She is the author of Remember, Return, Rejoice: Journeying from Ash Wednesday to Easter Sunday.

Mary Southard CSJ

A life-adventurer fascinated by the wonder and creativity of the cosmos, most especially our Earth, Sr. Mary’s art explores the great gift of existence with all its beauty and longing, its passion and mystery.In addition to being a professional artist, Mary is an experienced educator, retreat director, and spiritual companion. She delights in being with others as they awaken to new dimensions of their creativity.

Joe Vinciguerra - Certified Yoga Instructor

Joe Vinciguerra is a passionate truth seeker and a lover of yoga, learning, technology, blogging, biking and Italian culture. A native of New York, Joe studied with numerous instructors including Tao- Porchon-Lynch, who at 100 is the world’s oldest yoga instructor. Joe has travelled to Dharamshalla, India, the birthplace of Yoga to deepen his practice and knowledge of yoga and received his 200 hours level training there.
Joe is a licensed Broga Yoga Instructor teaching students of all ages in the Charleston SC area.

Jacki Mariest

Health and Well-being Coach, Certified Functional Medicine Coach, Registered Nurse, Certified Qigong Coach and Instructor, Jacki entered the world of medicine with a nursing degree and quickly realized she wasn’t in healthcare, she was in sick care.
Learning about the mind body emotion connection, she embarked upon a path to help herself and her clients heal from emotional turmoil that can lead to disease. Jacki has been practicing Qigong for over 20 years. It has helped her quiet her mind, open her heart and listen to her body and she most enjoys teaching clients to do the same.Jacki is a Certified Functional Medicine Coach, Registered Nurse, Qigong Coach and Instructor.

Deborah Adams

Deborah has practiced yoga since 1995 when she came to yoga as therapy to recover from a mastectomy. She began to study yoga and to develop her personal practice when she retired in 2013 after a career as an Information Technology Officer with the Federal Government.

Deb teaches traditional Hatha Yoga combining stillness (meditation), movement (asana), and awareness of the breath (pranayama) to help students release and relax and unite mind, body, and spirit. She also offers Yoga Nidra guided meditation for deep relaxation, stress relief, and manifesting intentions.

Deborah is a graduate of the Amrit Yoga Institute (AYI) and completed the Integrative Amrit Methods of Yoga and Yoga Nidra curriculum. Deborah is registered with Yoga Alliance as a RYT 500. She also completed certification with UNC Lineberger’s Yoga for Cancer program. She is currently enrolled in the AYI Yoga Therapy 800 hour program.

Sr. Pamela Smith SSCM PhD

Sr. Pam has a doctorate in systematic theology with specialization in environmental ethics. Author of 10 book and articles on Biblical, ethical and ecological themes, she is currently Director for Ecumenical and interreligious Affairs at the Diocese of Charleston.

Staff Members

Anita Braganza IBVM

Executive Director.

Loreto Sister of the Province of South Asia, Anita joined the Staff at Springbank with her experience as Province and Community Leader, High School Principal and Youth Animator. Anita has an MA in English Literature, MS in Pastoral Counseling from Loyola University, Maryland and a Licentiate in the piano from the Trinity College of Music London. As Executive Director from September 1, 2022 , Anita brings a creative soul, administrative skills,  a strong work ethic and a great love and commitment  to her ministry at Springbank. Her remarkable gift of producing music at the piano for prayer or a party is greatly enjoyed and appreciated.

Trina McCormick, OP, MFA

Founding Director.

Artist, spiritual director, licensed massage therapist. Trina has been committed to retreat work and native spirituality and rituals for more than 30 years and has developed the ecological initiative at Springbank. At the meeting of the Board of Directors in June 2022, Trina requested the Board that she be relieved of her role as Executive Director with effect from
September 1, 2022. 

Trina retired officially as Executive Director and was honoured with the title Founding Director of Springbank by the Board of Directors.

Rev. Jim Conlon PhD

Former Director and Professor of spirituality, Holy Name University, Sophia Center in Culture and Spirituality, Oakland, CA. Jim was presented the 2013 Thomas Berry Award by Mary Evelyn Tucker, senior lecturer and senior research scholar at Yale University and trustee of the Thomas Berry Foundation. This award was initiated in 1999 to recognize those instrumental in carrying on the work and legacy of Thomas Berry. This award honored Conlon’s more than two decades of leadership as director of Holy Names University
Sophia Center. Visit Jim online at

Doreen Cloutier, CSC

Sister of Holy Cross, BA in Special Education and Psychology, for 30 years Doreen was a missionary in Mali, West Africa and Haiti. An accomplished educator she has accompanied women and youth through school administration, campus ministry and community leadership. Doreen brings her experience, creativity, appreciation of indigenous wisdom, love for earth and passion for justice to Springbank. She is responsible for the healthy meals served on Campus.

Barbara Fava, OP

Dominican Sister of Peace, MA in Theology, MA in History, experience in Education, Pastoral Ministry, campus ministry, Outreach programs (social and human services) ecological and environmental committees. Barbara helps with guest preparation and ongoing needs, recycling, and the gardening project. She enjoys golfing and has a great interest in Eco-Spirituality.

Marcia Wilson, BA, RN

Marce is a pediatric nurse and certified Healing Touch practitioner who gives time out of her schedule to come from Canada and be part of the mission of Springbank for four-plus months of each year. Her love of the outdoors and her skills in building and grounds enhances and beautifies the Springbank grounds. Her commitment to healing contributes to the well-being of participants and the natural world.

Virgie Fincher BA BIT

Virgie brings to Springbank her experience of working in various office roles in the Phillipines. With her commitment , efficiency and secretarial skills, Virgie is an asset to Springbank.