Our Staff & Mascot
Our staff is represented by Founder & Executive Director, Marisa Diaz-Waian, Administrative Director, Tricia Clemons, Philosophical Advisor (overseas), Justin Whitaker, and Philosophical Advisor & Senior Mentor for scholars in the Merlin Fellowship Program, David Nowakowski. From day-to-day operations, to planning, strategy & working in the field, our officers are the backbone & wings of our organization. All three individuals bring to the table a unique and valuable mix of brains, brawn & heart, are actively engaged in a host of educational, environmental and charitable endeavors, and committed to the cause of helping individuals find their way with philosophy.
We also have an organization mascot named Luciano, a.k.a. ‘The Merlin Meower’! While not formally trained in philosophy, we believe his sage eyes & distinguished demeanor say it all.
We have a dedicated team of core volunteers, represented by Michael Chapman, Ryan Akin, Russ Danaher, Marie Z. Bourgeois & Ross Peter Nelson, as well as a host of regular community contributors, including Jonathan Drake and Larry.
Volunteers & contributors are a critical part of our non-profit organization. We value what each brings to the table — energy, time, perspective, skills, support, insight, expertise, feedback, ideas…the list goes on!
Our Advisory Committee
We have an amazing group of Helena professionals on our advisory committee that regularly dedicate their time and expertise to seeing that our organization succeeds in accomplishing our mission of helping to enrich lives and strengthen the community and environment through philosophy. Our advisory committee is represented by Bob Schmitt, Thomas Baumeister, Ann Waickman, Max Milton, Michael Chapman, Ryan Akin, Marie Z. Bourgeois & Ross Peter Nelson.
We are very grateful to have such a wonderful group of Helena professionals who lend their time, expertise & constructive feedback to our organization. You’re insights & guidance are invaluable!
Our Board is represented by J. Angelo Corlett, Arnold McMahon, and Troy Daronco. A motley & sophisticated crew with a shared love for teaching, learning and research, our board members have spent a considerable number of years examining life & the human condition (as well as helping others to do the same). All have been instrumental figures in his/her respective field, and have written, published, participated in, directed, and led an unfathomable amount of pedagogic charges, all aimed — in the end — at improving some aspect of our lives.
The result: an indispensable board with a broad-range of perspectives and capabilities & a shared intent to leave this world a better place then they found it.