The Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute (FLPCI) was founded by Michael Burns, Steve Gabriel and Karryn Olson Ramanujan in 2005. Since the beginning FLPCI has been sustained and nutured by the support of our alumni and volunteers for whom we are grateful. The board of FLPCI would also like to thank our supporters whose donations help us teach permaculture.
We offer opportunities to learn sustainable, ecological design methods including workshops, study groups, apprentice programs, and the intensive Permaculture Design Certification Course.
Michael Burns spent years working in publishing (including the Guardian Newsweekly, Tenant/Inquilino, & Tikkun magazine) and within the peace and justice movement. He learned permaculture design in Guatemala, while working with Ronaldo Lec Ajcot of the Mesoamerican Permaculture Institute. Now he is building his homestead based on permaculture principles when not devoting his energy to permaculture teaching, design consulting, and promoting in the Finger Lakes region and around New York State. Michael teaches Sustainable Economics at New Roots High School, volunteers for his town planning board, and fusses over his small flock of mongrel chickens. Michael is the Education Director for FLPCI.
Steve Gabriel is an ecologist, designer, educator, and forest farmer living in the Finger Lakes Region of Central New York. Raised for most of his life in Ithaca, NY, he continues to study and develop agricultural systems that improve the local ecology and economy. His experience draws from a diverse educational and organizational involvement, including completion of a BS in Environmental Studies from Empire State College and participation in several unique learning environments including Castle Rock Institute, Living Routes, and Prescott College. He spent three years as land use manager for Cayuga Nature Center, two years as co-owner of Sapsquatch Maple Products, and served on the Board of Directors for Positive News. He currently works at Garden-Based Learning of Cornell University, operates Work With Nature Design his own design consulting business, is a Board Member for Permaculture Institute of the Northeast, and is currently writing a book on Forest Farming. Steve is Program Director for FLPCI.
Karryn Olson-Ramanujan loves exploring the world and its cultures–a passion that has taken her from her home state of South Dakota to live in Germany, Ghana, and India. She began studying permaculture in 1997 and has completed certificate courses in both Northern California and India. Karryn and her family moved in 2003 to Ecovillage at Ithaca, where they are learning how to live in community and transforming their back yard into a food forest. Karryn sees her lifework as assisting faith communities to connect their spiritual teachings about nature with permaculture and sustainability. Karryn is the Alumni Director for FLPCI.
Becky Bowen first discovered permaculture with IPEC in Brazil in 2008. She found the Institute through her second PDC course at Ithaca College taught by Karryn, and was the Institute’s intern during the 2009 season. Becky graduated Magna cum laude from Ithaca College in 2009 with a B.A. in Environmental Studies. She has since established Pure Calm True Designs – a edible landscaping business. Becky is now the Outreach/Volunteer Coordinator at the Community Science Institute, where she organizes volunteers to conduct stream monitoring and helps homeowners seeking to protect their private wells from hydrofracking contamination. She and her soon-to-be husband Zac spend their free time working on their cabin, experimenting with aquaculture, and building their very own edible forest gardens. Becky is the newest member of the board and serves as the Treasurer.
Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute
2962 Swamp Rd.
Alpine, NY 14805
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