Introducing Debra Jonsson, Director, EarthRise Transformative Learning and Retreat Center

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Introducing Debra Jonsson, Director, EarthRise Transformative Learning and Retreat Center

Created date

5 April 2016
By the
Communications Team

IONS is thrilled to announce the appointment of Debra Jonsson as the new Director of the EarthRise Transformative Learning and Retreat Center. At our 197­-acre campus 30 miles north of San Francisco, EarthRise hosts thousands of explorers who come to study with internationally acclaimed educators, scientists, philosophers, health practitioners, life and business coaches, artists, and spiritual masters. We are simply overjoyed to have Deb at the helm of this endeavor, and look forward to seeing how the story of EarthRise continues to unfold.


What life choices led you to IONS?

I have done a lot of interesting work for good organizations, and that work has made a difference for a lot of people. Recently, I have been searching for work that has real meaning for me and explores frontiers that can make a more fundamental change in the world.

At IONS­ I can expand my mind and bring consciousness work into my everyday life. With EarthRise as a transformative learning place, I can also observe fundamental changes in those that attend events here.

What most surprised you in your first week?

I was pleasantly surprised at the level of compassion and cooperation on the EarthRise campus team. The caring staff is very open to a new direction, and eager to execute on a vision to amplify guests’ experiences on campus.

What do you envision for EarthRise?

EarthRise is a stunning campus perfectly suited for individual and group transformation. Having over 20 years experience in education and training, I’m looking forward to working with the science and education teams to connect the work of our amazing scientists with the interests of retreat goers.

There’s a strong community here that knows who they are, and a staff that does amazing work. I’m hoping to attract more secular and corporate groups with programs developed in­-house, and integrate them into the community. There are many areas of our work they could connect with, such as mindfulness meditation, conscious aging, and worldview exploration.

I want EarthRise to be the first place anyone thinks of when they want a unique place to focus, and to reset their state of mind. The current facilities will be upgraded and expanded, we’ll have an experiential science center and new sleeping accommodations. I want to help make EarthRise the preeminent retreat center for transformation and learning in North America.

What are your words of wisdom for guests?

Expect to be mesmerized by the location, with lush land and fantastic wildlife. Spend as much time outdoors as possible; enjoy the beautiful garden, the trails, and the view. Be prepared to be surprised at our amazing healthy meals created by our healthy, conscientious chef team.


Learn more about Deb’s background and the unique set of skills and experiences that she brings to EarthRise.


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