To grow our model of sustainable community that has been founded on the values of Unity and Aloha.
That our model for community living and life skill training inspires and empowers positive change throughout the county and state.
The Heart of Our Work
We believe Sustainability Starts with the Spirit. Living in Community, Team Building, Youth Empowerment, Business Administration, Wellness and Nutrition, Honoring the ‘Aina …through training and example, we support the individual’s personal path of talent, passion and creativity by supporting a strong Spirit and building practical skills for thriving in community.
We are honored and blessed to work with a brilliant staff of experienced, caring professionals, each a leader and innovator in their field. Their devotion to the vision of sustainable community and enthusiasm for our amazing human potential is inspiring!
Founder, Business and Finance Educator, Youth Empowerment
As Director of Mālamalama Farm and Center and Kolealea Agricultural Center, Sylvia brings a diverse background of leadership in corporate finance, community resourcing, personnel and project management as well as skill in spiritual counseling and a passion for creating and facilitating an intentional community setting. With a Peruvian Indigenous background, close ties with Hawaiian, Hopi and Navajo cultures and a deep connection with Nature, this passionate and innovative spirit heads up this 9 ½ acre project with a decades-long vision, work and practice of building community and creating sustainable living programs.
She is known as a pioneer in sustainability…which includes the land and environment, local food sourcing, wellness lifestyle, expanded life skills, and community building with a strong spiritual and heart-connected rooting. An organic vegetable and fruit tree grower for 38 years, Sylvia is committed to educating students in shifting to sustainable native food sources, with a strong Spirit at the foundation, offering practice in living harmoniously in community and a hands-on education right on the land in Hawaii, a source of strong spiritual connection and inspiration.
Sylvia’s calling to share her gifts expresses in her work with children and youth and her passion to help them to develop their own gifts. She encourages them to see and understand that their energy has an effect and supports them in learning to focus their energy in a way that is positive, healing and magical. Her passion for the arts, especially music and dance, including native music, enhances her loving and deeply insightful work with the children and youth and all the members of the intentional community. The cultivation of happiness and peace as practical life skills, now supported by current science, is an integral part of conscious community building and the foundation of a strong Spirit.
Sylvia’s dedication to youth, indigenous culture and the environment led her to create sub-organizations of Mālamalama shown at www.ChildrenHealingtheEarth.org, www.SustainableChangeNow.org, www.RootMovement.org, and www.ThePowerOf4444.org. An accredited affiliation and membership with the Pacifica Indigenous Grandmothers, Council of Maui, and Grandfathers Council provides ongoing support rooted in elder wisdom.
Sylvia continues to collaborate with amazing educators and facilitators in her community, supporting the growth and progress of those who come to learn and practice sustainability and community building. Her understanding and experience is that systems in society change for the better through the effort of individuals empowered at their personal foundation working in unity, and those who live and learn with Sylvia are passionately prepared to be an integral part of creating that change for the better.
As a Yoga and Meditation Teacher, Yoga Teacher Trainer and Mentor, Jennifer understands that a cornerstone of a healthy lifestyle is sustainable self-care and personal growth practices that support a creative engagement in community life. The practices of Yoga and Meditation support and empower the students and members of the community to learn to focus their energy in a way that enhances every part of their lives. She offers her 32 years of experience in the Healing arts and Wisdom Traditions to assist students in building their capacity for mind/body connection and the expression of a balanced, heart-centered life that contributes to a thriving community and a positive future.
Jennifer is involved with many aspects of the training, including Cooking, Nutrition and Wellness and Life skills. As a Director on the Board of Mālamalama Farm and Center, she uses her writing skills to help ensure that the vision of our mission continues to follow the heart and is well represented in written form.
Robin S. Knox
An eco-pioneering scientist with a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture and Environmental Health. Her 30 years experience in environmental protection has taught her that “pollution” is a resource that is out of place. Her knowledge of the biogeochemical cycles of the earth helps us to see that the same practices that build living soils and grow healthy plants also keep sediment and nutrients on the land and out of the water and air, where these materials would pollute and cause imbalances in the natural systems.Teaching how protecting soil quality and preventing erosion not only benefit the land and the farmer, but prevent the degradation of waters. Also how wastewater can be treated naturally in a low tech way, how treated wastewater can be used for irrigation, toilet flushing etc. and how to get energy from wastewater.
Robin S. Knox
Community Development, Youth Empowerment
His first love was golf, which he began at 18 months of age and after college became a PGA Master Professional. Golf is his bridge to early childhood learning which is predominantly right brain. His teaching style connects students to their own pathway of active learning outside of language. Bill found his love for farming when he moved to Maui in 2000. “It turns out that consciousness directed from heartfelt feelings can move mountains…for our purposes, it can also build great gardens”. Bill will help you experience learning outside of language as you learn to grow food.
Lucienne deNaie is a community activist with an unmatched record of service and environmental advocacy working with big issues of water management, land use and much more. She has been working for the community and the environment since high school, when she convinced school administrators to allow students to create a senior garden where there was once only concrete, then led the building and planting effort.Lucienne de Naie, who calls herself a ‘practical visionary’ has amassed a list of honors and accomplishments far too extensive to detail here. Highlights include her role as honorary mayor of a small town in Southern California, being chosen for a citizens advisory committee updating the County General Plan, official recognition by the governor for her years of stewardship of public lands, and her selection to work on the Hawaiian Tourism Authority’s Strategic plan. She is also the author of a well-regarded 200-page report on Maui’s water sources, is a founding member of Maui Cultural Lands, Inc., a non-profit land trust currently restoring acres of cultural sites in Honokowai Valley and of the Maui Coastal Land Trust. Her integral involvement with Sierra Club has supported environmental public education and proven its effectiveness
Certified Life Transformation Coach, Organizational Consultant
Spiritual Elder, Grant Writer, Business Owner
Growing up in the Pacific Northwest gave me a great love of trees as well as a deep yearning for the warmth of the sun. During the 70’s I was a part of the “Back to the Land” movement and built a 36 foot geodesic dome in Eastern Washington on a beautiful 20 acre piece of land overlooking the Kettle and Columbia Rivers joining point. Helping to start an organic bakery, Dharma Crumbs, North Country Co-op and the Northwest Barter Fair, I have been involved in sustainable community all of my adult life. The mother of seven, I home-schooled my children as well as creating two “Alternative Schools” one in Eastern Washington and one in Eugene. I graduated from the University of Oregon in 1974 majoring in psychology and art history and went to graduate school in Psych/Counseling at the University of California- Chico. I have experienced an “inner voice” since I was a child that led me to work in channeling spiritual guidance for 45 years. I have two books on Amazon, The Miracle of Gratitude and A Summons to Courage. Working with a group of angels known as Divine Grace, I provide support to my clients through phone counseling from wherever I am. This has allowed me to live in beautiful places including, Kauai, The San Juan Islands, Big Island, Spain, Italy, Costa Rica, Mexico, as well as many places on the West Coast. My husband, artist Larkin Chollar, and I were married and then divorced in the early 70s and after each raising families, we reunited in 2005. Two Geminis born four days apart in 1950 we have had an unfailing bond and desire to bring beauty and truth to the world. Now living at Malamalama Farm and Center in Haiku, Maui, and as a grant- writer and a board member as well, we hope to have the opportunity to participate in a sustainable community that helps young people, mothers and children and all those dedicated to creating a better life style. We are grateful to be together here in the wonderful beauty and Aloha of Maui.
Brigitte is a single mother of young twin girls, actively involved in their introduction to the world in a setting of natural beauty. She grows much of their own food right there on their home property. Brigitte lives by a code of Nature where the Earth is tended to in respectful and honoring ways. She has now undertaken a large project in one of her passions and single-handedly manages her 22 beehives and the honey produced. Her passion for Nature and good food has brought her to be an accomplished beekeeper in addition to a skilled farmer and food preserver. She has lived her life as a practitioner of holistic approaches to health, education, and community living. She understands the power of the mind, of the individual’s intention and sheer will to affect change. Her approach and interaction with people, then, is one of empowerment.
Kathy McDuff is a Lightworker whose goal is helping all beings to raise their consciousness to the highest level possible. Her perspective to sustainable living comes more from a spiritual point of view. As we ascend into the new age that is upon us, we must make a number of changes in order to stay aligned with our dear Mother Earth. We must return to an alignment with nature, which includes living sustainably and acknowledging that Mother Earth is the source of life, nourishment and learning and provides everything we need to live well. Every human being is responsible for respecting and living in harmony with Mother Earth. Kathy’s experience includes Native American shamanic teachings and Universal One truth, and she would like to offer an opportunity for anyone interested to find the truth within that will lead the way to a return to nature where they can find inspiration, guidance and healing for their own sustainable living.
Robin has the ability to streamline processes and systems within busy and fast-paced corporations, and to then integrate those systems with those of sister-companies so that the management of the companies is highly efficient, as well people are automatically cross-trained while learning and performing their own jobs. She has over 20 years of experience working for Fortune 500 companies. She has a gift of identifying detail in professional and personal settings that with some changes allow for a smoother flow of visual perception and thoughts. Things like colors being coordinated, font styles and sizes varying only to a degree where the mind does not hiccup in reading, words flowing easily…like with marketing material. She can feel graphics at a discord much like music playing out of tune. Ease and gracefulness is what she aims for when creating. For this reason she was the perfect candidate to design our current website…an instrument of information with a streamlined flow…and beauty. She is part of the team here that creates business documents and marketing material. As well Robin is a single mother with a 19-year-old son. Having recently completed extensive research on resources for challenged minds, and of the mental healthcare system in the U.S., she has identified a system that could serve to streamline this part of our society, as well has found a working model. Robin has chosen to work with smaller companies working towards a greater good, where her energy is best put to service having a greater impact on our communities. She is a member of the Board of Directors for Malamalama.
Graduate, Entrepreneur, Digital Media Marketing Advisor
In January of 2014, Josh became a student of Mālamalama as well as an active supporter of the mission and vision. Since graduating from the Mālamalama program, Josh has been solidifying his family as a husband and father living on Maui while establishing his own venture studio. He is a trusted advisor and brand ambassador of several organizations. Josh is involved with administering the websites of Mālamalama Farm and Center, such as Malamalama.org
Graduate, Business Owner
Forrest is one of our past resident students of agriculture and overall sustainability. His passion for sustainability includes a tight focus on keeping a local economy strong….advocating the circulation of spending dollars within the local community so that the community has a continuous flow of financial support building on itself resulting in a stronger economy. At the same time our money is spent in a way that is healthy for our community, Forrest advocates diverting money away from companies and organizations that support non-organic or GMO food…alleviating the issue of other-than-organic food going into our bodies as well a need for labeling…organic foods are labeled, and perhaps we need look no further than that. Forrest is the owner of a local store on Maui providing sound systems for vehicles within our community. A conscientious entrepreneur, he comes from the heart with high integrity, and loves his work. Forrest has been a speaker on one of our youth films shown on the Children Healing the Earth Facebook page. And he loves to fish.
Mary Jane Bennett
Mary Jane has been an island Doula, an educator of childbirth, and a lactation consultant for many years now. Her mission is to provide a Kind-Hearted offering of continuous, compassionate support, encouragement, information, education, comfort, guidance, acknowledgement, validation, and peace of mind from conception to postpartum and throughout the parenting journey, for all walks of life. She facilitates the transition of many women into motherhood, into family life. This level of support is vital within our communities where women have the greater portion of the responsibility of birthing, raising and supporting their children.
- La Leche League International Accredited Leader
- Mother of Four, now adult Sons
- Her Business name is Beautiful Informed Beginnings LLC
- Formerly Beautiful Births of Maui LLC, Established in 2004
- Birth Doula Care in Hospital, Birth Center or Home.
- Offering Childbirth Education/Breastfeeding Classes
- Home Visits for Lactation Consultations/ La Leche League International Maui Monthly Support Meetings
- Early Childhood Educator Certification from Saddleback College California
- Certified Birth Doula with Doulas of North America International
- Certified Lamaze International Childbirth Educator
- Accredited La Leche League International Leader for Maui County
- IBCLC-International Board Certified Lactation Consultant
- CD(DONA)- Certified Doula
- LCCE – Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator
- ECE- Early Childhood Educator
Mary Jane Bennett
Board Member, Veteran, Women’s Empowerment
For more than 20 years Gerry Ross worked as a Canadian geologist. Then about ten years ago, he changed careers and “reformatted” himself as a Maui farmer. A partner in Kupa’a Farms, he grows vegetables, tropical fruits and award winning coffee on 14 acres in Lower Kula. With the understanding that soil is the heart of any agricultural operation, he has a determination to amend and enrich it, then keeping the soil alive and healthy. His farming principles are “rock solid” and sustainable. He is a consultant on organic agriculture and compost, and holds on-site classes for the University of Hawaii.
Art Education, Business Owner
I grew up in the Northwest on Puget Sound in the fifties and sixties. I did art and played music from early childhood. When I saw the movie Jason and the Argonauts, and was amazed when Ray Harryhausen’s bronze sculpture, Talos, came to life…. I knew that whatever that was…I wanted to do it! I sculpted my first piece from stone at 10. Doing art and playing music has always seemed natural things to do for fun. I started a band at the age of 10 and played many gigs through grade school and junior high. I did art as well and won many awards and competitions through high school. After high school I sculpted on the forms of noted North West potter, Jack Crouse, for two years. I did hundreds of pieces during that time that went out to art shows and galleries throughout the North West. This dramatically increased the speed at which I work. During the late sixties I took off exploring from San Francisco to Florida and all points in between. During that period I had a vision of an incredible sculpture that entailed many small figures swirling up forming one beneficent human form. From his hands flowed water into the world below. This inspiration fueled the next thirty years of trying to “get good enough” to create on this level of artistic mastery. Starting a family in my twenties in the Santa Cruz Mountains, I used my art to support my family through creating my own business, Chollar Art Works, as well as doing commissions. The years went past as I used my resources from my commercial work to create fine art for my own artistic growth. Over the last thirty years I worked on many large and small projects. In the 1980’s an appraisal by the Minneapolis Museum of Modern Art prompted art collector, Ron Matros, to fly to Santa Cruz and commission $60,000 worth of my work. My work has also been commissioned, produced and bought by the late Mark Hoffman, highly respected art appraiser and owner of Maxwell’s Gallery. I worked on the eagle for the National Monument to the United States Constitution. Dick O’Kane was a great friend and supporter who provided me with a studio in Cannery Row, Monterey, where I sculpted bronzes ranging from small to several thousands of pounds. I also was able to work with the best stained-glass studios on the West Coast on three McFly restaurants. The stunning Time-traveler Bar built in Cupertino for the Apple executives was a standout in any era. I have done many portrait bronzes of celebrities such as one of Jack O’Neill commissioned by his children. In 2012 I “retired” to Mexico and enjoyed living there for six years. I love Mexico and the Mexican people, but needed to give my talent to the world while I had time and health. I decided to find a place where I could return to my art, make money, be inspired by beauty, and enjoy a culture that combine some of benefits of living in the U.S. with a heart centered culture. Maui and Aloha is the perfect answer. My wife and I also wanted to live in a dynamic sustainable community with a focus on giving. This we have found in Haiku at Malamalama Farm. I plan on living out my days here in the beautiful islands and hope that this international center for art will welcome my gifts of sculpture, jewelry, and painting.
Farm and Center Maintenance
As Land Manager at Kolealea Agricultural Center, he works directly with the students and the flow of tasks to show the sustainable approach on this land. Considered “un-farmable” by many, the challenges on this terrain are typical to many other lands, and the most fulfilling endeavor is to show how food can still be grown. Taking pride in the developing young fruit and bamboo orchards, the outdoor classroom is an energetic fun learning.
Graduate, Business Owner, Youth Empowerment
Being a part of Malamalama for the past 7 years has sparked a life-long journey into the practice of sustainability, which was something I never thought about before the time I spent learning hands-on at Kolealea/Malamalama. It has been such an honor to be able to serve the organization for the last few years. Sylvia has built an extraordinary network of talented people that are dedicated to cultivating and sharing vital knowledge on how we can live harmoniously with our environment individually and collectively. Making the shift towards a mentality of sustainability was extremely rewarding in my own life and something I hope others can experience as well. Whether it is handling website issues or writing copy for marketing materials, I know the energy I put into Malamalama will have a positive impact on several different levels.
Samantha has an impressive array of skills and experience in business operations including team communication, project management, program development, operational flow, graphics work, marketing, and grant writing. She is an asset to both this organization and to our students with the ability to teach all this, including an important tool for our students: creating professional resumes. With two college degrees under her belt, one of those with a double minor, a brilliant mind and lots of energy, Samantha is a fine candidate for highest level administration of any company or organization. As well with her innate sense of responsibility and her desire to jump into gear to meet deadlines, she handles herself with the responsibility as an owner of the business. A mother of 5 young children, her organizational skills are not just handy…they are critical! As well she is quite versed in the role her small community…her village…plays in the upkeep and nurturing of her family, and aware of its importance. She is an exemplary team-player herself, whether with her family or at business. Other details of her accomplishments and abilities: Create and edit marketing content, prepare materials and presentations (i.e. flyers, corporate leasing proposals, case studies, qualifications booklets, email blasts, invitations, brochures, flyers, floor plans and website content using Adobe Suite), develop and implement forms/records to document project activities, develop and facilitate volunteer solicitation programs, develop, plan, and implement marketing strategies, oversee development of web design, distribution materials, and production and distribution of all publications, provide copy as needed, coordinate event initiatives from securing a venue to leveraging social media and email campaigns (i.e. fundraiser campaigns, spay-and-neuter programs, family picnics, adoption events), build funding relationships, complete Grant writing and proposals.
Melinda’s expertise in research is being put to use in finding grants in the areas of our work that include land, maintenance of buildings, and training courses. We are specifically looking for grants for construction phases of the overall vision for this Center, for invasive species removal from the jungle part of the land as well the entire property, for farming and farm equipment, materials and supplies for the training courses, materials associated with the training center overall, and on-going repairs and maintenance of the dwellings. She identified the Atherton Family Grant foundation as a hopeful source for construction grant funds to move us forward towards completion of the buildings, bringing them all into compliance with county building codes. Melinda has a finesse in putting training documents together as well, with graphics that accentuate and show the instructions being given for marvelous clarity.
Greg has traveled extensively. He holds a B.A. in Psychology and Biology from Kansas State Teachers College. He wrote and directed the “Solar Energy Education Project” for Pres. Carter’s administration. This earned him a scholarship with Buckminster Fuller. As a direct student of several Native American cultures, he speaks also of Native Sustainability and Strategies. He is passionate about the history of economics and how it applies in current corporate form, and the non-renewable use of energy and its effect on the economy.
Rich Lucas wears a lot of hats: sustainability teacher, non-profit planning director; organic farmer; retired attorney; starseed healer. But one of his passions is sustainable living and food security. He believes that Maui should be the global model for alternative energy and sustainable living. The escalating crisis of volatile food prices and food insecurity is the result of a corporate minded model based on large-scale, export-orientated agriculture tied to international competition, self interest and stock market speculation. With people going hungry each day despite a huge surplus of food production, we need to move towards more localized, smaller scale and sustainable agriculture. His goal is to set up food sharing communities around the island where food can be grown in ideal conditions and no one will go hungry. He would be happy to share his knowledge and philosophy with anyone who is interested.
A free-lance naturalist, ecologist, economic botanist, land-use management specialist and homestead landscaper. An enduring childhood love for nature matured over seventy five years of grass-roots living into the impressions, opinions speculations and conclusions that he offers here as Adaptive Ecology. He believes that sustainable and otherwise harmonious coexistence with nature is both necessary and possible, is an instinctive need in all animals and is the special aptitude, talent and personal ecological responsibility of Homo sapiens. In Adaptive Ecology his focus is, telling city people not, perhaps, what we want to hear, but what we need to know to save the planet from destruction by ourselves.