Emergent Studies Institute

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Emergent Education Team

Woman helping man up

“People are like stained-glass windows.
They sparkle and shine when the sun is out,
but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed
only if there is a light from within.”

~ Elizabeth Kübler-Ross

Lisa Evert-Raeyne, MATP 

Founder and Project Director

Lisa Evert was born in Saratoga, California to a family of artists, writers, and business professionals. She grew up in Santa Cruz, and the San Francisco Bay Area and moved later to Nevada City and then to Austin, Texas. Her travegood-lisa-pic-from-video-seriesls have taken her to places like Maui, Hawaii and Sedona, where she felt an amazing personal and spiritual connection to Nohaa (Mother/Grandmother Earth) and the local communities.

Creativity has always been a driving force in Lisa’s life. Singing to Spirit and for her community since kindergarten, Lisa inspires others through her music, writing, and creative expression. Her grandfather instilled in her from a very early age the wonder of nature and the use of different perspectives to tackle life’s challenges.

Lisa draws on her extensive business experience, education, and creativity to serve as Chief Executive Officer of Haven International and Emergent Studies Institute. Lisa knows how incredibly powerful life can be when you connect with yourself transpersonally (body, mind & spirit) and face life head-on.

Trace Whitley, MATPPic of Trace

Founder, Project Leader and Tech Manager

Trace Whitley was raised by a family of educators who have inspired her lifelong passion for education. She grew up in the small suburban town of Duncanville, just south of Dallas, lived in and around the San Bernadino Mountains in California, and  has traveled all over the Southwest and the East Coast — Asheville, Salem, Sedona, Santa Cruz and New Orleans.  Although from a Celtic background, she currently lives in Austin, Texas–  “Keep Austin Weird” they say! This town is weird in an amazing way… Filled with a mixture of artists of all kinds of environmentally conscious people, truly stunning city with like-minded people is a fantastic place for Haven International and ESI to have headquarters!

For more information, please visit:

Amber R. Balk, Ph.D.

Project Leader & Faculty

Amber R Balk_Photo

Amber holds a Ph.D. in Transpersonal Psychology and a MA in Women’s Spirituality from the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology. This unique combination imparted a sense of rootedness in the world as an agent of social change and a questioner of consensus consciousness. Her undergraduate studies were completed at the University of Central Oklahoma with a BS in Psychology, which provided a background in conventional psychology and research. This served as a solid foundation from which to expand in innovative ways. She additionally minored in Creative Writing.  

Amber is the developer of a research methodology– Integrative Holotropic Community Action Research. This is an emergent research approach that emphasizes mutual reciprocity, relational accountability, navigating micro/macro-cosm layers, and community outreach.

Message from Amber:

“I specialize in applying transpersonal theory to settings conducive to individual and communal transformation. My interests include synchronicity, expanded states of consciousness, dreamwork, birth and death, Grofian theory, and radical feminism which seeks to raise awareness in all forms of oppression. I am a mother, transpersonal educator, speaker, researcher, creative consultant, writer, and activist. Dedicated to movement towards wholeness in all endeavors, I consider it a sacred honor and responsibility to serve in this capacity. At ESI, I act as both faculty and as an Emergent Education Team Project Leader. I look forward to connecting and companioning you as your journey with ESI unfolds.”  

For more information, please visit:

Martha Brumbaugh, Ph.D. 

Project Leader and FacultyMartha Headshot

Martha Brumbaugh is an educator, writing coach, artist, and ceremonialist.  She received her doctorate in Transformative
Studies from the California Institute of Integral Studies in 2006. Her doctoral dissertation, Out of the Mists: An Organic Inquiry into Sacred Ways of Knowing and the Shaping of Reality, focused on the impact of cross-cultural Shamanic practices on white, middle-aged, middle-class women. She has mentored women and men on academic and spiritual paths since 1988.

In addition to teaching and working as a writing coach, she writes a column for Culture Counter magazine at http://culturecountermag.com. She has taught earth-based spiritual practices, shamanism, Tarot, and sacred arts and crafts individually and through workshops.  Martha’s current research interests include ways in which transformation is facilitated through the literature of fantasy and science fiction, Mary Magdalen, and developing cutting-edge research methods.

Martha lives on the California coast with two cats, two ravens, and her sister. She has two adult sons, and recently became a grandmother. She loves cooking, reading, and film. She also loves to travel and experience other cultures through history, architecture, and mythology.

She leads visionary quests throughout the western United States and facilitates workshops on the Tarot and Sacred Arts and Crafts.

For more information, please visit:

Jessica Bowman, M.A. 

Project Leader and Facultyjessica-bowman-picture

Jessica Bowman has worked in K – 12 public education for many years with both urban and rural programs.  Having the privilege to work with so many students of different nationalities, heritage, re
ligions, perspectives, and values has provided a tremendous worldview reinforcing the importance of tolerance and acceptance of others. Diversity truly is the spice of life.

As a member of the Cosmic Cowgirls, Jessica paints virtually and in person with an amazing art tribe of women across the globe using the amazing concept of Intentional Creativity within the Contemporary Symbolism movement. She is very interested in the Sacred Feminine found in the archaeological record and world mythologies across time. She finds the practice of making art to be a wonderful vehicle for personal transformation and is captivated by the idea that making art is an active form of prayer. Jessica has facilitated workshops for women using concepts from art and spirituality for women suffering from various forms of grief.

For more information, please visit:


Carla Hines, AIS Meeting Solutions

Project Leader and Principal Event Consultant

Carla assists ESI with all of it’s event planning and intensives as well as serves on Haven International’s board of directors.

Specialization:  Advise, plan, organize, and generally facilitate small and medium- sized conferences, seminars, intensives, workshops, symposia and business meetings.

1 Comment

  1. Very good ladies! I hope to join your team!

    Liked by 1 person

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