To email an individual facilitator, kindly send an email to email@example.com and fill out the Subject line with the facilitator’s name.
Vicki Abadesco is an expert educator and program consultant with over 20 years of leadership work with schools and organizations throughout the United States and abroad. Her extensive work with a wide diversity of thousands of youth and adults allows her to have a constant pulse on what people need to be launched into lifelong success and growth.
Her expertise and training includes individual and group level counseling, conflict resolution, crisis intervention and accelerated learning techniques. She has written, created and produced several life skills curriculum manuals and activity card decks, including Leadership: Truth or Dare and Mentor Magic.
Vicki is also the developer for the companion curriculum to the College Life 101 internet radio talk show for students, distributed to First Year Experience educators from more than 50 schools across the nation.
A California native, Jennifer Ferlito was raised in a beautiful home with love. However, she always had feelings of not being good enough and this led to years of insecurities, bad relationships, frustrations and not-so-good choices. In high school she pushed herself and was an honor roll student, a winning MVP soccer athlete, and she made the dean’s list in college; but nothing brought the love and approval she craved.
She shares her story of overcoming adversities with a message that everyone experiences pain in their lives and that we all have the power to heal.
With a passion for making a difference in people’s lives, she is committed to supporting and inspiring others. She has volunteered for many great organizations like Challenge Day, Habitat for Humanity and competed in her first triathlon to raise money for the Leukemia Society’s Team in Training. As a Life Coach, Jennifer uses her attentive listening and non-judgmental loving approach to work with youth and adults to heal and create the life of their dreams.
Approval used to be the “drug” of Jennifer’s choice. She worked hard to please everyone else by doing everything she could to fit in, but she lost herself in the process. The cost of this chase for approval left Jennifer financially in debt, physically abused, and painfully alone. Jennifer shares both her challenges and the path she chose to walk on in order to change her life.
Joseph Savage is a California credentialed teacher who has been working in education for over 20 years. He believes that educating the whole person and creating a safe environment are imperative to having successful learning experiences. In addition to his classroom teaching his educational accomplishments include directing student generated plays, training conflict resolution skills for youth and adults, conducting school wide assemblies on peace and creating practical curriculum.
As a teacher, Joseph is known for crafting nurturing and academically focused atmospheres for his students. As a teacher coach/mentor he is supportive and inspiring. In addition to his educational experience he has written, performed, and directed theater productions throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
Daniel Bruno is an award winning actor and musician from the Bay Area. His work in the arts branched out to teaching acting and directing plays for children a few years ago, and eventually led him to Soul Shoppe, where Daniel feels right at home. Daniel brings with him over twenty years experience, a boat-load of passion and a whole lotta love.
Melanie Hopson has enjoyed a variety of positions in community organizations. For 25 years she has worked in school districts, summer and day camps, non-profits, the YMCA, and various ecumenical settings. Melanie is extremely skilled at creating systems and advancing great ideas. She’s one of those people who can’t help but be organized and detail-oriented.
Amy MacClain is a Bay Area Native whose extensive experience with youth includes substitute teaching, directing plays, leading youth camps, bilingual tutoring (Spanish/English), sports coaching and most recently parenting! As a mother and community leader, Amy co-founded a child care co-operative based on conscious intentional parenting, teaching toddlers how to express their feelings positively and listen to each other (yes! this is possible!) while providing a supportive environment for parents to explore how they were parented in an effort to create the most nurturing and educational space for the entire community. Amy has trained in conflict resolution, Re-Evaluation Counseling and social oppression work. She is also a singer/songwriter with over 10 years performing experience. She is delighted to bring all of her experience together to lead powerful workshops and assemblies for schools.
Having been through a childhood of neglect and abuse, Heath Wood finds great fulfillment in making the choice of rededicating himself continually to a life of authenticity and compassion. As a national and international speaker and facilitator, he brings his powerful life experience and leadership to audiences of all ages.
Heath holds a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology. He has worked with people clinically for nearly a decade. Having served in numerous substance abuse and community mental health settings, he has provided treatment in the form of individual, group, family, and couples therapy. Being a natural teacher he has taught at the college level and has provided psycho-educational classes on topics such as stress reduction and meditation. He has also conducted numerous presentations for clients and colleagues in such areas as substance abuse, trauma, depression and suicide, as well as providing skill-building workshops to help people develop the necessary skills to be successful in life.
Wherever he goes, Heath is dedicated to creating a safe space for people to move beyond fear and anxiety, into a deep sense of appreciation and acceptance for themselves and others.