What is PeerSpirit?
PeerSpirit is an educational company with a small office, transformational dreams, and global outreach. We are a privately held corporation with two founders, Christina Baldwin and Ann Linnea, our office manager, Debbie Dix, and our webmaster, Margaret Rode. We work with a cadre of teaching companions whose wide range of expertise allows us to respond to many opportunities.
The name, PeerSpirit, comes from the group process methodology that informs all our work: PeerSpirit Circle Process. When leadership rotates, responsibility is shared, and ultimate reliance is based on the group's highest intention, a peer spirit is in action. In everything we do, we believe that equality of contribution releases a synergistic energy that helps us toward best outcomes.
PeerSpirit colleagues are masters at facilitating significant conversations among people in businesses, education, non-profit organizations, and personal groups. The partners bring decades of experience in group facilitation, teaching, speaking, writing, and leadership skills to this work.
- American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE)
- Capital Health, Nova Scotia
- Financial Planning Association
- Wheaton Franciscan Sisters
- Incarnate Word Foundation
- United Methodist Church of Green Trails, Missouri
- Nova Scotia Community College
- Unity Church NW Regional Conference
- Ridge and Valley Charter School, NJ
- The National League of Cities
- The Luke Center for Catalytic Leadership
- South Whidbey School District
- American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE) Annual Meeting 2005, 2006, 2008
- International Coach Federation 2006
- Shambhala Institute for Authentic Leadership 2006, 2007
- Financial Planning Association Annual Meeting, 2007
- True North Integrative Health Care Conference 2003, 2004
- Centering Pregnancy Annual Conference, 2006
- School for Servant Leadership, 2006
- Women of Wisdom, 2006
- Western Women's Conference, British Columbia, 2008
- Journal Conference 2008: The Power of Writing, Denver, CO
- Berkana Institute
- Art of Hosting
- Kufunda Village, Zimbabwe
Christina Baldwin is a writer and seminar presenter of 30+ years experience. She has contributed two classic books to the exploration of journal writing, including the well-known classic, Life's Companion, Journal Writing as a Spiritual Practice, revised and reissued in 2007 after 100,000 original sales. This work led her to a long study of personal growth and group dynamics and as a result of that experience she wrote Calling the Circle, the First and Future Culture to explore how social container releases needed wisdom. In recognition of the requirement for increased spirituality, she wrote The Seven Whispers, A Spiritual Practice for Times Like These. Her legacy book, Storycatcher, Making Sense of our Lives through the Power and Practice of Story, reminds readers of the necessity of story to communicate in all areas of professional and personal life. Continuing the exploration of collaborative dialogue, Christina and Ann Linnea wrote a new classic, The Circle Way, A Leader in Every Chair, which documents applications of PeerSpirit Circle Process as a foundational tool for local to global change.
Christina holds a B.A. in English with honors and Phi Beta Kappa from Macalester College, and a M.S. in Educational Psychology from Columbia Pacific University. She currently lives on an island near Seattle, WA, from which she travels extensively to lecture, teach, and call people and organizations into conversations of heart, meaning, and activism.
Christina is the author of the following books and audio:
The Circle Way: A Leader in Every Chair, with Ann Linnea (Berrett-Koehler, 2010)
Storycatcher, Making Sense of our Lives through the Power and Practice of Story (New World Library, 2005)
Lifelines, How Personal Writing Can Save Your Life (Sounds True, 2005) audio curriculum
The Seven Whispers: Spiritual Practice for Times Like These (New World Library: 2002)
Calling the Circle: the First and Future Culture (Bantam: 1998)
Life's Companion: Journal Writing as a Spiritual Practice (Bantam: 1990 & rev. 2007)
One to One: Self-Understanding Through Journal Writing (M. Evans: 1977, rev. 1991)
Anthologized essays include:
The Spirit of a Woman: Stories to Empower and Inspire, edited by Terry Laszlo-Gopadze (Santa Monica Press, 2010) “A Storycatcher is Born”
Field Guide to Relationship-Based Care, Visions, Strategies, Tools and Exemplars for Transforming Practice, ed. Mary Koloroutis, et al, (Creative Health Care Management, 2007) "Inspiration, Four Leaders' Reflections"
The Change Handbook, The Definitive Resource on Today's Best Methods for Engaging Whole Systems, ed. By Peggy Holman, et al (Berrett-Koehler, 2007) "PeerSpirit Circling, Creating Change in the Spirit of Cooperation" with Sarah MacDougall
Light of Our Times, Conversations with Today's Leaders in Health and Spirituality, edited by Daphne Michaels, (Vibrational Health Press, 2006), "On the Power of Story"
The Soul of Creativity, Insights into the Creative Process, edited by Tona Pearce Myers (New World Library 1999) "Writer and Witness, Healing through Story"
Walking in Two Worlds, Women's Spiritual Paths, Edited by Kay Vander Vort, et al. (North Star Press, 1992) "Solo Dancing on the Spiritual Quest"
Selected conference presentations include:
- Northwest Organization of Nurse Executives, 2010
- Plexus Institute: Complexity and Nursing Conference, 2010
- Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Nursing Symposium, 2009
- The American College of Nurse-Midwives, 2009
- The Ohio State University, Leader Development Office, 2009
- Journal Conference 2008 - The Power of Writing
- National League of Cities, 2008
- Shambhala Institute, Authentic Leadership Program, 2006, 2007
- Financial Planning Association of America, 2007
- American Association of Housing & Services to the Aging, 2007
- American Organization of Nurse Executives, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2009
- International Coach Federation, 2006
- School for Servant Leadership, 2006
- ICAN Omaha, Women in Leadership, 2005
- True North Wellness Conference, 2003, 2004
- Story Circle Network, 2003
- Hollyhock Retreat Centre, 2000- ongoing
- Women Within International and The Mankind Project, 2002
Affiliations and Memberships:
Ann Linnea is a writer and educator with decades of experience serving the art of dialogue in a fascinating range of settings. Whether she's guiding people on a wilderness quest or presenting a workshop to business leaders, Ann embodies the stewardship of wild things, which has characterized her life and work.
She began her writing career in Utah, authoring hiking and skiing guides during her years as U.S. Forest Service naturalist in the 1970's. In 1991, Ann co-authored the award-winning Teaching Kids to Love the Earth. In 1992, she designed her own mid-life rite of passage and became the first woman to circumnavigate Lake Superior by sea kayak (an 1,800 mile journey). Deep Water Passage, A Spiritual Journey at Mid-Life, describes this journey, portraying her extraordinary physical courage and even more extraordinary spiritual trial and transformation. In 2002 she worked with a local environmental education organization to publish A Journey Through the Maxwelton Watershed. In 2010 she co-authored The Circle Way: A Leader in Every Chair with Christina Baldwin as a legacy contribution to two decades of pioneering circle work. Also out in 2010 is her full color Keepers of the Trees—A Guide to Re-Greening North America, the result of decades of devotion to making natural history accessible to the ordinary person.
In 1994, Ann and author/educator Christina Baldwin co-founded their educational company, PeerSpirit, Inc. Ann has keynoted at the University of Minnesota, "Bonds between Women and Water," conference; the University of Wisconsin, opening convocation; and the National Park Service, Alaska Regional Conference. She has worked with numerous healthcare and education institutions, non-profits, and religious communities. When replenishing herself at home she enjoys gardening, hiking, kayaking, and bicycling. She has two grown children and one adorable grandson.
Ann is the author of the following books:
The Circle Way: A Leader in Every Chair, with Christina Baldwin (Berrett-Koehler, 2010)
Keepers of the Trees: A Guide to Re-Greening North America (Skyhorse Publishing, 2010)
A Journey through the Maxwelton Watershed, (Washington State, Water Quality Grant, 2002)
Deep Water Passage, A Spiritual Journey at Mid-Life (Little, Brown, 1995; Pocketbook, 1997)
Teaching Kids to Love the Earth (1991 Pfeifer-Hamilton/ University of Minnesota Press).
Anthologized essays include:
Arctic Refuge, A Circle of Testimony, compiled by Hank Lentfer and Carolyn Servid (Milkweed Editions, 2001) "Leaving a Legacy"
Soul of Creativity, Insights into the Creative Process, edited by Tona Pearce Myers (New World Library 1999) "Two Dragonflies and a Volcano"
Gifts of the Wild, A Woman's Book of Adventure (Seal Press, 1998) "Superior Spirit"
Another Wilderness, New Outdoor Writing by Women, edited by Susan Fox Rogers (Seal Press, 1994) "Superior Spirit"
|Ann's educational background:|
B.S. Botany, Iowa State University, 1971, honors
M.A.T. in Education, University of Idaho, 1972
Elementary certification, Utah State University, 1974
Rites of Passage Guide
Wilderness First Responder since 1997
Affiliations and Memberships:
Wilderness Guides Council
Washington Water Trails Association
Whidbey Camano Land Trust
Whidbey Audubon Society
National Resources Defense Council
Art of Hosting Conversations that Matter
Collective Wisdom Initiative
Debbie Dix, PeerSpirit Office Manager, has a degree in Art History and a Master's Degree in Japanese studies. In 1984, she went to Tokyo with her husband to see what it would be like to live there for "one or two years." They ended up staying for almost fifteen. During that time, Debbie studied Japanese and worked at a variety of jobs. She did quantitative analysis for a market research firm, free-lance editing, proofreading, and research analysis, as well as working in the office at the American School in Japan. Debbie and her husband, Frank, traveled throughout Japan, and enjoyed meeting the people, sampling the food and relaxing at various hot spring resorts. They also had the good fortune to travel extensively in places such as Turkey, Egypt, Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, Bali, Thailand and Hong Kong. From these experiences and years of living in another country, Debbie carries a global perspective in the PeerSpirit office. With the birth of their son, Joel, in 1998, Debbie and Frank returned to the U.S. and to Whidbey Island, where Debbie had vacationed as a child.
She joined PeerSpirit in March 2000. As a mom, Debbie appreciates the flextime schedule at the PeerSpirit office. As a working woman, she enjoys supporting Christina and Ann in their work, being able to grow with the company, and working in an environment of caring and respect. Debbie is truly a colleague in the company essential to our functioning! She manages the PeerSpirit office so that Christina and/or Ann can travel, oversees the monthly Circle Tale, handles the books, products and order fulfillment of our on-line store, and is often the first voice or email response that greets new inquiries. She is counted on for her expertise, her perceptions, and her voice in the council process. Debbie and her family currently live in a house with a view of water and mountains, and she enjoys reading, movies, gardening and traveling with her family.
Margaret Rode, web-designer for PeerSpirit, left corporate work to bring her skills to a company whose name says it all: Web Sites for Good . She focuses on supporting the work of clientele who are contributing to quality of life, social justice, environmental causes and other good in the world.
She began working with PeerSpirit in 2000, and generated the second generation website that has served us so successfully the past few years. She is an incredible, natural writer with meaningful stories to tell, a participant in The Self as the Source of the Story, class of 2004. Her clients form an impressive network; PeerSpirit is glad to be on her list!Margaret lives with her husband, Eric, and their wonder-dogs at the edge of the wild in Kittredge, Colorado.