Jim Martin-Schramm joined the Religion faculty of Luther College in 1993. He is an ordained member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and holds a doctorate in Christian Ethics from Union Theological Seminary in New York City. Most of his scholarship has focused on issues related to ethics and public policy. He is the author of Population Perils and the Churches’ Response, (World Council of Churches, 1997), the co-author of Christian Environmental Ethics: A Case-Method Approach, (Orbis Books, 2003), and the author of Climate Justice: Ethics, Energy, and Public Policy, (Fortress Press, 2010).
Jim served as a member of the Population and Consumption task force of the President’s Council on Sustainable Development during the Clinton administration. Jim serves on the board of the Iowa Wind Energy Association and is a member of its Legislative Advocacy Committee. Jim has also been active in sustainability initiatives at Luther College. He served on a task force devoted to these issues during Luther’s latest round of strategic planning and is chair of the Energy and Water committee of Luther’s new Campus Sustainability Council.
Currently a part of The Capitol Group/Sage Advice, a lobbying and public policy consulting concern, Bob is a bi-coastal Iowan whose father’s family has been in Council Bluffs since 1872 and whose mother’s family has been in Dubuque since before anyone can remember.
Since graduating from Creighton University (in the paleolithic era) with a B.A. in American History and from Iowa State University with a Master of Public Administration degree, Mulqueen has worn more hats than Bartholomew Cubbins. He served as a VISTA Volunteer in steel towns in the Pittsburgh area, as a night watchman at a demolition site, as a staffer in the Iowa Senate, as very junior staffer for a U.S. Senator, a slightly older staffer for a U.S. Representative, as an educational system’s fundraiser, as a lobbyist and policy staffer for the Iowa State Association of Counties, as lobbyist and energy policy staffer for the Iowa Environmental Council, and as policy director for the late, lamented Iowa Office of Energy Independence.
Mulqueen lives in Des Moines and is married to a very patient woman.
Barbra Jotzke-Torrier is the director of development and communications for Whiterock Conservancy, a land trust open for public recreation in Coon Rapids, IA. She grew up in Des Moines and after beginning her career in Chicago returned in 2007. Barbra earned her BA degrees in communications and philosophy from Valparaiso University, IN and an MA in philosophy from Western Michigan University. She has spent her professional career increasing awareness and raising funds for non-profits that focus on securing a future for the earth and the people who inhabit it. Whether fighting for women’s rights at the Chicago Foundation for Women, clean water at the Iowa Environmental Council, or climate change with Iowa IPL, Barbra believes advocacy efforts are important tools in working for true solutions not short term fixes.
Andi Lewis is Prairiewoods’ marketing coordinator. She grew up in Michigan and attended Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, where she earned degrees in Broadcast Journalism and Women’s Studies. After college, she stayed primarily in the Chicago area, working as a reporter and producer for an NBC-affiliated TV station, the marketing and operations director at a professional organizing service, and a textbook writer and editor. Throughout all of her careers, she has developed a love for various aspects of marketing and communications. Andi and her husband, Steve, relocated to Cedar Rapids in February of 2011 to be closer to family.
Andi was raised as an active member of Covenant Community Church, which is part of the Reformed Church of America (RCA). She worshiped at numerous churches in the Chicago area. In Cedar Rapids, she worships at First Lutheran Church, which is part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). Andi’s religious beliefs tend to be open and inclusive of all faiths and people.
An Episcopal priest for 25 years, Cathleen has special interest in prairie preservation and restoration. Most recently, she was the Dean of the Cathedral Church of St. Paul as it transformed its very urban lot in downtown Des Moines into a teaching garden of prairie natives, rain gardens and permeable pavers aimed at water quality and flood mitigation. In Kansas, she worked with students and faculty on prairie restoration projects and now assists a similar project through Iowa State University. Currently, Cathleen teaches Biblical Literature and World Religions at Waldorf College and is writing a novel aimed at inspiring interest in the many threatened grasses and forbs of the tall grass ecosystem. She does this as part of an MFA course in Creative Writing and the Environment at ISU. She seeks to formalize the network of prairie and food gardens on Episcopal Church land and organize them for environmental advocacy on local issues in Iowa. Her degrees include a D.Min. in preaching, an M.Div. and an MA and BA in English Literature.
Patrick Courtney is the lay cantor at Tifereth Israel Synagogue, a Jewish spiritual community affiliated with the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism. A native of Texas, Patrick both grew up in a multifaith family and has since started his own, marrying an ordained pastor affiliated with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) denomination. Throughout his life, he has been involved in and an advocate for interfaith dialogue. After witnessing firsthand the terrible consequences of our energy-related environmental practices, such as mountaintop removal, he has committed himself to doing whatever he can to help our society rethink its environmental and energy practices, not only for our own generation’s health and prosperity, but for that of future generations, a commitment that has been redoubled since the birth of his 1-year-old son.
Gereon grew up in a Roman Catholic family in Southwest Germany. After high school, he first studied Roman Catholic theology at Tübingen and, then, Comparative Religious Studies and philosophy at Temple University in Philadelphia. In his dissertation, he compared the philosophy of the Japanese medieval Zen master Dōgen with Jungian psychology and phenomenology. His current research focuses on the application of Zen Buddhist philosophy to social and ethical challenges of today.
Gereon has been practicing tea ceremony and Zen meditation for over ten years. Currently, he is associated with Ryumonji, a temple in the Sōtō Zen lineage, in Northeast Iowa. In addition, he has received the first level certification as tea teacher in the lineage of the Urasenke school.
Daishin Eric McCabe began formal training in Zen in 1998 at Mount Equity Zendo in central Pennsylvania. His 15 years of monastic life included practicing at Buddhist temples in Japan, France, California and the Midwest. Since coming to Ames in 2014, his goals are to (1) teach meditation, yoga and Japanese Zen Calligraphy as a means of finding both inner contentment and outer direction; (2) speak and inform the general public about Buddhism; and (3) offer Buddhist resources to foster meaningful dialogue and action on climate change. To this end he has created Zen Fields, which he intends to make into a non-profit organization. Daishin majored in Religion and Biology as an undergraduate at Bucknell University, and was recently granted the equivalent of a Master of Divinity through the Association of Professional Chaplains. He lives with his wife in Ames.
Allison Steuterman is a Shareholder with Brick Gentry P.C. and practices primarily in litigation and municipal law. Allison was born and raised in Des Moines, Iowa and attended Drake University School of Law where she was an Opperman Scholar and graduated with high honors in 2004.
Allison is an active member of Immanuel United Methodist Church in Des Moines where she has served on the Staff Parish Relations Committee, Education Committee, and Administrative Council and teaches the kindergarten and first grade Sunday school class. She is married to Josh Steuterman and has two children, Ella and Graham.
Wendy started a group called “Sustainable Independence” in her hometown to work on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and educating about climate change. She has received leadership training from the Climate Reality Leadership Corps, 350.org and Citizen’s Climate Lobby. She graduated from Luther College with a BA in Biology and Psychology. Wendy works part-time as a veterinary assistant and also as a sales consultant for Blue Sky Solar.
Wendy is married to Terry, who is an environmental consultant and they have two teenage daughters. They belong to Immanuel Lutheran church and Wendy is the daughter of a Lutheran pastor. Her faith and her concern for the environment have combined to push her out of her comfort zone and speak up about climate change.
Her hobbies include learning, books, movies, rugby, genealogy, baking krumkake, tattoos, exploring the Midwest, and, hopefully, learning to play the accordion.