Who we are
The Local Futures team can be found on four continents, with main offices in the USA, Australia and the UK.
Helena Norberg-Hodge, Founder and Director
Helena founded Local Futures in 1978. Helena is the author of Ancient Futures: Learning from Ladakh and Local is Our Future, and producer of The Economics of Happiness. She is the recipient of the Right Livelihood Award, also known as the ‘Alternative Nobel Prize’; the Goi Peace Prize for her pioneering work towards a new economy; and the Arthur Morgan Award.
John Page, International Programs Director
John coordinated the technical and cultural programmes of the Ladakh Project for ten years. He produced our videos, The Future of Progress and the award-winning Ancient Futures: Learning from Ladakh, and co-directed The Economics of Happiness. He is the co-author of From the Ground Up: Rethinking Industrial Agriculture. His series of photographs depicting the spread of the global monoculture have been used by NGOs around the world.
Steven Gorelick, Managing and Programs Director
Steven has worked with Local Futures since 1987. He is the co-director of The Economics of Happiness, author of Small is Beautiful, Big is Subsidized, and co-author of Bringing the Food Economy Home. He writes frequently for the Local Futures blog, and is our financial manager and editor-in-chief. His writings have been published in The Ecologist and Resurgence magazines. He frequently teaches and speaks on local economics around the USA. He also runs a small-scale organic farm with his wife and two children in Vermont.
Anja Lyngbaek, Associate Programs Director
Anja has worked with Local Futures since 1986 on many projects, including the International Alliance for Localization, the Economics of Happiness Conference Series and World Localization Day. Fluent in Spanish, English and Danish, she has been a spokesperson for localization on several continents. Anja divides her time between a Mexican ecovillage and a small island in the Danish Archipelago. She is a passionate food grower and is happiest with her hands in the soil. Anja holds a BSc in Rural Resource Management and a MPhil. in Agroforestry.
Kristen Steele, Director of Special Projects
Kristen has worked with Local Futures since 2000. She has taken on multiple roles, including research, writing, fundraising, outreach and program management. She has also been the main organizer for several of the Economics of Happiness conferences and other Local Futures’ events. She holds a BA in Environmental Studies and a Master’s degree in Wild Animal Biology. She is also currently pursuing doctoral research on the intersection of conservation and economics in regards to threatened species.
Marjana Kos, Executive Assistant
Marjana has worked with Local Futures since 2006. She holds a Master’s degree in Holistic Science from Schumacher College. She is active in raising awareness about globalization, new economics, the money system and complementary currencies. She lives in Slovenia with her partner and young son, together they’re creating a one-hectare forest garden and building a low-impact, natural home.
Alex Jensen, Researcher and Project Coordinator
Alex has worked with Local Futures in the USA and India, where he coordinates our Ladakh Project. He is an associate of the Sambhaavnaa Institute of Public Policy and Politics in Himachal Pradesh, India, and represents Local Futures in the Vikalp Sangam/Alternatives India initiative. He has worked with cultural affirmation and agro-biodiversity projects in campesino communities in a number of countries, and is active in environmental health/anti-toxics work.
Henry Coleman, Project Coordinator
Henry connected with the work of Local Futures at age 15, and has worked with the organization in Ladakh, India and Australia since 2015. Now almost fluent in Ladakhi, he helps to coordinate our projects there. He also represents Local Futures at public events in Australia, and works on various writing projects. In 2017, he co-founded the NGO Wildspace, where he has further developed his capacity as a community organizer and activist.
Carly Gayle, Project Coordinator
Carly has worked with Local Futures since 2018. Among other tasks, Carly is responsible for the Planet Local series and our forthcoming Action Guide. A graduate of Wellesley College, she has practiced permaculture and regenerative design in Madagascar, Indonesia, and the USA, and now lives in Washington, DC. She is currently studying herbal medicine.
Laura Tyley, Digital Outreach Coordinator
Laura has worked with Local Futures since 2018. She has a diploma in digital marketing and uses her skills to spread the Local Futures message to new and existing audiences. Laura is based in Bristol, UK and spends most of her time at her allotment. She is currently self-studying movement building and is passionate about exploring systemic change at a local level.
Victoria Clarke, USA Administrative Coordinator
Victoria Clarke has worked with Local Futures since 2004. She carried out research in Ladakh as part of her MA from the School for International Training. Having lived and worked abroad, she now resides in San Francisco where she grows herbs and vegetables in her rooftop garden.
Samantha Salmon, UK Administrative Coordinator
Samantha has worked with Local Futures since 2014. She works on a range of administrational tasks, as well as video editing projects and helps keep the Local Futures website up to date. She has a degree in Culture, Organization and Management. She has traveled all over Asia and spent half a year volunteering in Nepal. She is founder of the Laxmi Support Foundation. She lives with her husband and two daughters on Dartmoor in South West England.
Kunzang Deachen, Ladakh Project Associate
Kunzang is from Ladakh, and joined the Local Futures Ladakh team in the summer of 2019 to help coordinate the Ladakh Economics of Happiness conference. In 2017, she left a job in Delhi and started Infinity Ladakh with a vision to encourage spiritual and physical well-being by promoting yoga, meditation & nature expeditions.
Chozin Palmo, Ladakh Project Associate
Chozin is from the Changthang region of Ladakh. She is founder of the Jangsa initiative and co-organized the Ladakh Economics of Happiness conference. With Local Futures she is helping to raise awareness of the systemic roots of contemporary ecological, cultural and social issues in Ladakh, and to strengthen the local agrarian economy.
Anja Light, Social Media Coordinator
Anja has spent most of her life as an environmental and indigenous rights campaigner, project manager and presenter/workshop leader. She is a co-founder of the Sloth Club of Japan – the leading organisation of the ‘Slow’ movement in that country. Strongly influenced by deep ecology philosophy and through living with tribal peoples and local communities around the world, her work with Local Futures has a strong foundation in direct campaign and life experience.
Shankari Raj, Associate Director
Shankari is an architect, and director of Nudge Group, a practice she founded to challenge traditional approaches to architecture head-on. She is dedicated to community-led projects delivering social, environmental and financial benefits. She communicates this to the students she teaches as a visiting lecturer at Cardiff University. She was born in Sri Lanka, and grew up in Nigeria, Oman and then London. She is on the Board of Trustees for BATB (British Architectural Trust Board) and Love the Future.
Tracy Worcester, Associate Director
Tracy is a well-known environmental campaigner and film-maker in the UK. She is former patron of the Soil Association, former trustee of Friends of the Earth and trustee of the Gaia Foundation. She is founder of the Price of Progress Productions and her most recent film is Pig Business.
Elena Fedina, Volunteer Translator
Elena has translated for Local Futures since August 2019. She was born and raised in Moscow, Russia. Her professional path led her to New York City, where she currently resides. She has spent the last few years learning about regenerative agriculture, sustainability and meaningful ways to make a change in the world.
Lily Ortega, Volunteer Translator
Lily has translated for Local Futures since 2019. She was born and raised in Mexico but came to the United States to become a certified Montessori teacher. Since then, she has earned a Masters Degree in Social Work and translated a partnering book into Spanish.
Georgia Erato Triantafyllidi, Volunteer Translator
Georgia resides in Athens, Greece where she was born and educated. She has also worked and lived in Norway and Belgium. Although a city dweller and ‘letters’ person’, she has always been interested in Nature, wildlife, arts and crafts. Georgie has done a lot of natural living and child care voluntary work. She’s an expert at languages and translates for Local Futures.
Wendell Berry, Fritjof Capra, Diana Rose, Jonathan Rose, Vandana Shiva, Michael Shuman, David Suzuki, Alice Waters