the official website for the Association of Waldorf Schools of North Americasm

Meet the Leadership Council

Karen Atkinson
Leadership Council -  Mid-Atlantic Region

Karen is a long time Waldorf educator who has taught at several Waldorf schools in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions since 1995.  Prior to moving into grades’ teaching, she was a Waldorf early childhood educator for many years.  In addition to teaching, she has served as a mentor and consultant for over two decades.  In addition to her work with AWSNA, Karen formally served as the Mid-Atlantic Regional Representative for the Waldorf Early Childhood Association of North America (WECAN).  She received her undergraduate degree in Liberal Arts, with a focus in Education, from Vermont College and attended Antioch University, New England, for Waldorf Teacher Education in both Elementary and Early Childhood.  She is currently engaged in an active research project that aims to cultivate and support both teachers and students as the Waldorf movement grows beyond 100 years.  When not in the classroom, Karen can be found out in nature.  She supports local, organic farmers and enjoys preparing health-giving meals with her family and friends. 

Lisa Babinet
Leadership Council - Northern California/Nevada Region

Lisa has taught math at the Waldorf School of the Peninsula (WSP) since 2003, where she is also a founding teacher of the high school. Lisa earned a BA in Mathematics, a MS in Mathematics Education and a PhD in Science Education from the University of Pennsylvania, where she also taught graduate school. She also has a master’s degree in Applied Psychology. Before WSP, she taught mathematics in middle and high school for over two decades in independent schools on both coasts, as well as having been an administrator. Lisa has also taught in teacher trainings at Rudolf Steiner College, in China and Malaysia, has mentored and evaluated Waldorf teachers, and currently serves as the Northern California AWSNA Leadership Council Member. She is the parent of two Waldorf "lifer-alums" and enjoys reading, hiking and crafting.

David Barham
Leadership Council - Northeast/Quebec Region
Over his 29 years in independent Waldorf schools, David has been a subject teacher (math and movement), a class teacher, a high school teacher, College Chair, faculty chair, Board member, AWSNA rep., teacher trainer, occasional consultant and presenter. He is currently teaching humanities (history, civics, literature) and serving as the faculty chair at Maine Coast Waldorf High School School in Freeport, Maine. David has previously taught at Pine Hill and High Mowing in Wilton, NH and at El Papalote in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. David's current passion is the teaching of more accurate history and the intersection of Waldorf education and social justice. He is also fascinated with governance forms that allow schools to do their best work by strengthening and deepening human relationships. David received his undergraduate degree from Tufts University and his Waldorf certification and Master's degree from Antioch New England Graduate School. David is married to Kelly, a Waldorf early childhood educator and has had three children (Jakeb, Eliza and Adriel) move through Waldorf education - though curiously, none of them actually graduated from a Waldorf school. He has also recently become an abuelo to Bernadette Marie and couldn’t be any more thrilled by that biographical reality. He is excited to make this move into the leadership work of the Association.
Cathie Foote
Leadership Council - Texas-Mexico-Canadian-Southwest-Rockies Region

Cathie served as the School Administrator at the Calgary Waldorf School (CWS) for twelve years and now serves as a mentor to the school's Administrative Leadership Team.  Cathie also served for twenty years on the CWS Board of Directors, as President, Past-President, Secretary, and member at large.  Her daughter Kate attended Preschool through Ninth Grade at the Calgary Waldorf School, and then graduated from the High School at the Toronto Waldorf School. Before Cathie's Waldorf school administration career, she worked for 25 years as a social worker, counsellor, mediator and researcher, primarily with children and their families in medical settings and with bereaved parents.  She also taught in the Faculty of Social Work at the University of Calgary.  Cathie has an Honours BA in Sociology, an MA in Sociology, and an MSW, all from the University of Calgary, and she is an RSW with the Alberta College of Social Workers.

Douglas Gerwin
Leadership Council - Teacher Education Delegates Circle (TEDC)

Douglas Gerwin, Ph.D., has taught history, literature, German, music, and life science at college and Waldorf high school levels for nearly 40 years. As Executive Director of the Center for Anthroposophy (CfA), he divides his time between adult education and teaching adolescents, as well as mentoring Waldorf schools across North America. Himself a Waldorf graduate, Douglas is the founder of CfA's Waldorf High School Teacher Education Program, as well as the first Executive Director of the Research Institute for Waldorf Education. He is author and editor of nine books on Waldorf education, as well as numerous articles on education and anthroposophy. His most recent publication is a collection of articles entitled Trailing Clouds of Glory: Essays on Sexuality and the Education of Youth in Waldorf Schools (2014). At present, Douglas resides on the outskirts of Amherst, Massachusetts, with his wife Connie, a Waldorf high school teacher of mathematics.

Laura Mason
Leadership Council - Waldorf Early Childhood Association of North America (WECAN)

As Membership Coordinator of the Waldorf Early Childhood Association of North America (WECAN) since 2016, Laura supports about 200 early childhood programs in their membership processes. Laura has been an early childhood teacher at Three Cedars Waldorf School - now Eastside Community School – in Bellevue, WA since 2002 and has held a variety of leadership positions within the school. She received her Waldorf Early Childhood Certificate from Rudolf Steiner College in 2007. Laura is the parent of two Waldorf alumni: Anne ’13 and Rachel ’15.

Brooke Natzke
Leadership Council - Southern California/Hawai'i Region

Brooke has been a class teacher at the Waldorf School of Orange County since 2011, returning to teaching middle school after promoting a class to 9th grade in 2019.  She came to Waldorf education and a serious study of Anthroposophy in 2002 and has been involved with Waldorf schools in Arizona and California. Prior to teaching, she worked as an Office Administrator for the Waldorf Institute of Southern California, where she also completed her Waldorf teaching certificate.  Brooke holds a B.F.A. in Theatre from Arizona State University and is in her final year of training with the Center for Biography and Social Art.  Brooke has four children; 2 at the WSOC High School and two WSOC alumni, Class of 2019 and Class of 2021.

Frances Vig
Leadership Council - Pedagogical Section Council (PSC)

Frances is currently an art teacher and class advisor at the Chicago Waldorf High School, and a Core group member and faculty member of the Waldorf Institute of Chicago.  She has experience as a class teacher and special subject teacher at CWS, has been a member of the Board of Trustees and worked with governance issues as well as mentoring. Research into the intersection of science and art has been a lifelong passion. Frances completed her studies at Christ Church College Canterbury, Kent in the UK where she focused on secondary education. She then studied arts with a focus on sculpture at Emerson College, Forest Row, England. She and her husband are the parents of Noah, Cymen and Halin Vig , all three of whom attended the Chicago Waldorf School. They are currently highly entertained by the delightful antics of two lively grandchildren, Kai and Roar.


Rebecca Moskowitz
Executive Director, Advancement
Melanie Reiser
Executive Director, Membership
Stephanie Rynas 
Executive Director, Operations & Member Resources