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James Stark, M.A., F.E.S., is the co-director of the Regenerative Design Institute (RDI). He co-founded and co-directs the Ecology of Leadership program and is a senior trainer in the 3-year, full-time Regenerative Design and Nature Awareness training program, preparing young global community leaders for the “Great Turning” of our era.
James has committed his life to exploring how we – ourselves, our communities, and our species – might move as quickly as possible back into harmony with who we are and the natural world. He considers the programs at RDI a nursery for growing visions of the new era, and providing skills and tools to bring the visions to life.
For decades, James dedicated himself to community visioning and organizing in West Marin – during which he co-founded the following organizations, among others:
- West Marin Growers Group (WMGG), which was created to ensure food security in Marin County. WMGG grew into the 5013c, Marin Organic, which introduced the Marin Organic Food Label and hosts the West Marin Farmers Market.
- Waste Free Now, which is committed to West Marin becoming waste free and hosts the innovative annual Recycle Circus including a "Stuff Exchange" for people to redistribute community resources.
- KWMR "Watershed Radio", which is a licensed 501c3 community radio station in the tenth year of providing a voice for West Marin residences and heard around the world live through web casting.
- CLAM - Community Land Trust Association of Marin, an affordable ecological housing land trust (5013c) created to provide affordable housing in the face of increasing gentrification.
James’ years working with visioning led him to an interest in exploring the inner world and to earn a master’s degree in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica. Like the natural systems and patterns that guide permaculture, his work now is to help others explore the inner patterns that affect how visions become reality. He believes that creating a loving, peaceful inner world provides the soil for the seeds of our world visions to grow.
Other Community Work
James served two consecutive board terms on the West Marin Chamber of Commerce, the Permaculture Credit Union and the Centre for Responsible Tourism.
He served on steering committees for West Marin's county supervisor dealing with waste and affordable housing issues and also served on the Built Environment Working Committee charged with updating the county-wide plan of Marin County.
James is currently establishing RDI as California regional center for Gaia University that has centers in Europe and South and North America - a movement to localize higher education.
He has presented at conferences around the world including as the opening keynote speaker at the annual conference of naturopathic physicians in summer 2009.
James, you presented so much wisdom, groundedness and a really strong presence for me. Your words travelled straight into my heart so often and helped me and others to feel understood and in connection. You are very generous, accepting -a big heart. JB
You, James, are a true leader because you set such a great example in your service path. I love your shared insights, your sense of humor, grace and ease. LR
James, you are very warm and loving, eloquent with sharing your own journey and getting us to see our selves in universal terms. Loved your personal encouragements and reflections during deep sharing. SB
James, you are a strong, gentle sweet Uncle Oak tree providing soil structure, shade and habitat for all of us. VC
A model for me of graceful living. PH
Thank you, James. It is your voice and vision that has struck a deep chord in me when I first met you on the farm. And what a beautiful place of transformation you have created for the Mother to reconnect with her children. ED
James –our village elder- you are a true visionary who provides such a safe space for all of us to explore, learn and grow. It has been a privilege to be in your presence -much love and gratitude. CC