BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Alaska educator and filmmaker Len Kamerling has produced numerous critically acclaimed, award winning documentary films on Northern cultures and issues. His film The Drums of Winter, about Yup’ik Eskimo music and dance, was named to the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress in 2006. He is Curator of Film at the University of Alaska Museum of the North, and Professor of English at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Len Kamerling has thirty years of experience as an educator and a producer of cultural media. Throughout his career he has been committed to exploring issues of cultural representation and the role that both documentary and fiction film can play in eliminating stereotypes and credibly translating one culture to another.
Natalie Ott Schuldt
Natalie was born in Fairbanks and raised on her parents’ homestead in Salcha between the Piledriver Slough and the Tanana River. Childhood winters meant mushing and reading by gas lights, summers meant being outside more than in, and autumn meant berry picking until snow forced her inside. She has lived all over the country, including Dallas, New Orleans, and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Because the boreal forest is imprinted on her soul, she made her way back to Fairbanks and plans on staying forever. Since moving back to Alaska, she has recovered her childhood love of cross-country skiing, berry picking, and generally getting lost in the woods. She loves all things folksy and is passionate about learning how to make things by hand in the old ways. Natalie has an art degree from UAF and is a work-at-home printmaking artist and mother. She lives in Goldstream Valley with her husband Gabe and her two sons, Charlie and Ole.
Vice President and Secretary
Gordon Williams was raised in Anchorage, Alaska. He’s had a lifelong interest in the outdoors, handcrafts and building things (but makes no claims to being terribly good at them). He learned to be an avid photographer and general putterer from his father and to enjoy arts and crafts and volunteer work from his mother. After spending his college years in Massachusetts and Washington, he and his wife Leah got their first jobs in eastern Pennsylvania. After living and working there for seven years he finally got to come home to Alaska again in 2009 when he got a job as a math professor at the University of Alaska Fairbanks where he pursues his passions for pattern, symmetry and education.
Marianne Stolz was born and raised in Germany. Her decision to pursue a career as a professional wood carver was heavily influenced by the many folkschool classes she was able to attend in her German home town. Since moving to Fairbanks in the early 90’s, Marianne started to pass on her expertise in wood work, teaching classes to children and adults. Having a “do it yourself” kind of lifestyle, she home-schools her two children. With her interest in hands-on approaches she served on the board of Calypso Farm and Ecology Center.
Bruce Campbell started cooking over a campfire in 1963. At 14, while canoeing in Northern Manitoba, the group of older teens ran out of food, took their fishing seriously, and Bruce acquired a lifelong interest in planning and creating camp meals. A master of heat control with fire, Bruce’s cooking classes explore different aspects of campfire cooking, such as Dutch Oven camp cooking and more primitive forms of cooking.
Bruce built his first canvas covered kayaks in 1966. Wooden skiffs in 1976, early 1980’s, and 2014. He is currently suffering terribly from a “need” to build a glued lap boat in the fashion described in Thomas Hill’s: “Ultralight Boatbuilding.” But before he takes on such a task, he wants to explore the process and understand it well enough to know he can complete a boat.
Michael Whalen is a professor and geologist at UAF and the Geophysical Institute. He grew up in western Pennsylvania but has lived in Fairbanks for over 20 years and loves to hike, bike, and cross-country ski. His interest in education and the outdoors drew him to The Folkschool where he hopes to make a positive contribution serving on the Board of Directors.