Autumn Summers

Autumn Summers is a plant geek. Inspired by the plants since childhood she has studied herbalism and ethnobotany for the last 20 years with a kinship for the plants, seaweeds and mushrooms of Northern California. She has guest hosted KPFA’s Herbal Highway, co-organized free community herb festivals and worked at various herbal businesses including Rosemary’s Garden, Simplers Botanical and KW Botanicals. Currently she teaches edible and medicinal plant classes at the California School of Herbal Studies ( and throughout the Bay Area and manages Bayer Farm Community Garden for the non-profit LandPaths (

Jim Hall

Jim Hall MA CMT comes from a family of spiritual healers and has been intensively involved in various holistic healing modalities since 1979. He holds a master’s degree in Holistic Health Education from John. F. Kennedy University and has studied with healers from a variety of traditions, including Michael Moore, Kashaya Pomo elder Lorin Smith, Karyn Sanders, Chanchal Cabrera, and medical intuitive Laurie Schyriver. Jim currently teaches at  the Ohlone Center for Herbal Studies in  Berkeley CA, and at the California School of Herbal Studies in Forestville CA.  He also has a private herbal and energy healing practice, specializing in alternative treatments for cancer and soul retrieval.  He can be contacted by email at <>.

Kara Sigler

Kara is certified by the Ohlone School of Herbal Studies in Berkeley, CA as a Clinical Herbalist.  She completed the three year clinical training program at the Ohlone Center, as well as a one year apprenticeship program through Motherland Herbal School in Willits, CA.  Kara has also attended many short workshops around the bay area from renowned teachers, and worked as a lab technician making herbal medicine at KW Botanicals in San Anselmo.

Kara currently sees clients on an individual basis in the San Francisco Bay Area. In addition to teaching at Ohlone, she leads herb walks, wildcrafting trips, and other short-term classes in nature.   Kara is a member of BACHA: Bay Area Clinical Herbalists Association.  Her website is:

Karen Aquiar

Karen is our Medicinal Mushroom Instructor. She has been making botanical medicines full-time for 8 years. Karen is an owner of The Herbal Apothecary, providing custom herbal medicines for health practitioners and others. She is also an organizer of the Northern California Women’s Herbal Symposium. Her Website is:

Katherine Novotny

A self-portrait of Katie Novotny would look like a colorful octopus lady (probably with fairy wings) adorned in an experimental vintage wardrobe with each arm holding plants, tincture bottles, ceramic sculptures, crystals, records, a deck of cards, a novel, and a smudge stick. She comes from a long line of green-thumbed, strong female influences and has admired grandmothers for as long as she can remember.

Katie Novotny is a Clinical Western Herbalist with a certification in counseling, and has been seeing clients since 2011.  In consultations, she works with each individual’s unique case, and formulates herbal, nutritional, and emotional treatment to help her clients heal from their dis-ease. After each consultation, Katie takes the time to track each of her client’s progress and keeps a detailed record of the content in each session. Seeing clients is one of her passions, and is confidant working with all kinds of health concerns: emotional/physical/spiritual. She is currently teaching the “Foundations” class for the OHC in San Francisco.

When she’s not at the Ohlone Herbal Center, you could find her thrifting at yard sales, camping in her old Nissan truck, or in her backyard gardening, pruning fruit trees, or wrangling chickens.

Krista Herbe

Krista R. Herbe is a Certified Clinical Western Herbalist in the San Francisco Bay Area. She teaches classes, leads herb walks, group workshops, and student intensives, in urban and wild places, and works with individual clients in private practice.  Since moving to the Bay Area in 2005, Krista has participated in a supportive community of healers, learning and practicing with many tools to heal herself and support the healing work of others. Krista works to support the individual and community awakening of our ancestral knowledge thru the practice of connecting to the plants, animals, rivers, and mountains around us for healing.

Growing up in the Ohio River Valley, partnered with an innate empathy and curiosity of the wonders of this world, instilled a love of plants, animals, astronomy, music, and dance. Her first ‘career’ was in community service working for nonprofits doing outreach, fundraising, and organizing with a focus on campaigns to support workers rights, create affordable housing, promote environmental justice, clean water, end sexual violence, and gain legal protection for LGBTQI folks.

When not teaching, seeing clients, wildcrafting herbs, or making medicine you can find Krista cooking, gardening, collaging, cuddling her feline familiars, enjoying the flora and fauna of California, hiking the hills, swimming the rivers, smelling the wildflowers and listening for the caws of the wild.

Madeleina Bolduc

Madeleina Bolduc, a certified Clinical Herbalist, has been cultivating the art of herbalism for twenty years. She has been leading small groups in transformative, therapeutic sessions and holding a private practice for the past twelve years in the Bay Area.

As a child growing up in the Colorado mountains, she spent most of her time talking with the natural world. Raised in the eclectic diversity of the Naropa University, she was trained by Tibetan lamas, artists and indigenous elders in the ways of magical reality, consciousness and meditation. She chose to develop the path of medicine by completing a three year clinical program at the Rocky Mountain Center of Botanical Studies, studying with David Hoffman, Chanchal Cabra, Mindy Green, Michael Moore, and completing her clinical studies with Paul Bergner in 1999.  Since then, she has traveled throughout South and Central America, Mexico, the Caribbean and China studying with shamans, curanderas, master healers, doctors and medicine people.

With the encouragement of her teachers, she has developed a holistic understanding by integrating many healing modalities. She is certified as a massage therapist, radical counselor, Reiki practitioner, energy medicine practitioner and brings nonviolent communication and expressive arts therapy to her work. In 2005, Madeleina designed and planted an experimental asian medicinal plant garden at the Shambhala Mountain Center and lectured on over 40 species of native and asian plants. Currently, she is deep in the midst of a 12 year mystery school in New Mexico with the shaman/scholar Martin Prechtel and leads community grief rituals with the beloved African teacher and shaman, Sobonfu Some. As a cultural ambassador, Madeleina is passionately dedicated to teaching people about the Vitality of plants, healing and transformation and the incredibly diverse ways in which we can mutually benefit each other, while encouraging Life to thrive!

Pam Fischer, RH (AHG)

Pam is the Ohlone’s Head Instructor and the Center’s Director.

Pam has been working with herbs since 1986. She completed her studies at the California School of Herbal Studies in 1989. She has been teaching classes in medicine making, plant identification, wildcrafting, theory and practice of herbalism since 1991.   Pam began the BACHA (Bay Area Clinical Herbalist Association) organization in 1991.  In 1997 she became one of the first Western Herbalists on staff at Charlotte Maxwell Complimentary Clinic in Oakland.  Charlotte Maxwell clinic provides free access to alternative and complimentary medicine for low income women with cancer. Pam is a fourth generation Bay Area resident and has developed a deep love for native plants.

Sarah Bearden

Sarah Bearden has been a practicing nutritionist since 1996. She is the Director of Roots To Health, a center specializing in Nutrition Consultation and Nutrition Education.  She received a diploma in Nutritional Medicine in London and practices both in Marin County and England.

Terri Jensen

Terri has been working with botanical medicines in a variety of capacities for over 20 years. She is an owner and medicine maker for The Herbal Apothecary, a full line herbal pharmacy. She is also an organizer of the Northern California Women’s Herbal Symposium. Her website is:

Tony Siefert

Tony manages the pharmacy & dispensary at Ohlone Center where he teaches botanical medicine making.
He is a graduate of the California School of Herbal Studies & apprenticeship programs with Matthew Wood.
He has a private herbal practice in San Francisco and can be reached at (415) 824-6165.