Earthdance Board of Directors

Spirit Joseph (President)

Spirit Joseph served as Co-Executive Director of Earthdance from 2005-2011. He currently works as a Program Manager for the Cooperative Fund of New England, which provides financing and technical assistance to cooperatives throughout new England. Spirit holds an MBA from the Isenberg School of Management with a concentration in finance, and also serves on the Board of Windhorse Associates. He discovered Contact Improvisation in 2000 and dove deeply into the form, attending every jam and workshop he could find for several years. He later expanded to study various forms of dance improvisation and somatic movement. In the past, Spirit has performed with the Dance Generators (a multi-generational dance company based in Northampton) and with Group Atness (an improvisational dance collective which he co-founded with several other dancers).

Chris Orth (Treasurer)

Chris Orth has been part of the dance community since 1974 when friends introduced him to Dance Free in Cambridge. Though he flirted with Contact Improvisation over the years, he was in his sixties before he became a regular at Jams. A long time DNE member, he felt at home at Earthdance right away. Chris had a 20 year career in finance as an Accountant and Budget Analyst before his fascination with new technology lead him to change careers. For the last 15 years he has worked as a programmer and currently works for a prominent tech company in downtown Boston. Chris is known as approachable, open-minded, and a person people choose to confide in. These qualities help him navigate his career, and find diplomatic solutions when others can’t. He has two grown daughters and lives in the suburbs of Boston.

Robyn O'Brien

Robyn O'Brien lives in Putney, VT, where she has managed the Putney Food Co-op for 11 years. She is also a member of the initiating group for Transition Town Putney, and continues to participate in Transition Town Working Groups.

Robyn has been a food co-op manager since the mid 1980's, working to build community through collaboration and supporting connections. Robyn sits on the Board of Directors of the Neighboring Food Co-op Association, and has been an active participant in the efforts of other Co-operative organizations. Her love of dance and the dance community has led her to Earthdance where she hopes her skills and enthusiasm will be of service.

Susan Arnsten-Russell

Susan M. Arnsten-Russell is known to many, in the Earthdance community and beyond, as a dancer and an artist. Susan is also known as a gardener, a mother, a wife and an occupational therapist.  All of these roles depended on careful cultivation of resources and collaboration with diverse groups of people. Susan is committed to the continued existence of Earthdance. She lives in Ithaca, New York.

Molly Kitchen

Molly Kitchen works with moving bodies and soulful connections in her roles as a yoga teacher, a community herbalist, a wellness mentor, a gardener, and a dancer. She teaches public yoga classes in Northampton, Greenfield, and Shelburne Falls, and also teaches semester-long courses at Hampshire College. She loves bringing her life passions together in new ways, and empowering others to live vibrant, healthy, passionate lives themselves.  Her website is She's excited to bring her skills and open mind to the Earthdance Board, and looks forward to giving back to this community that has given her so much wonder, sweetness, and creative fodder.

Join the Earthdance Board!

We are seeking new members for our Board of Directors. If you are interested, please find more information here

Gopi Krishna

Gopi Krishna has worked Instructing Outward Bound Courses through the Great Smoky Mountains with the North Carolina Outward Bound School in Morganton, NC. He has been a carpenter and Licensed General Contractor since 1986. He also worked as the Director of Hampshire College Men's center from 1993-94; was a YouthBuild Instructor in Springfield, MA from 2001-2; is a past Board Member of the Men's Resource Center of Western Massachusetts; and has served on the Board of the Northampton Zen Center. He is Co-Founder of the Julius Ford/Harriet Tubman Healthy Living Community (JF/HTHLC), a year-round initiative that creates opportunities for critical thinking, healthy living, and co-creating community among inter-generational educators, activists, artists, community builders, and under-served youth. HF/HTHLC holds an annual Conference, held by and sponsored in part by Earthdance. Gopi also proposed and initiated the process for Earthdance receiving non-profit 501-C3 status in the spring of 1990. Gopi, his wife, Bi-sek Hsiao, and their daughter, Paloma Hsiao-Shelton, live a 10 minute walk from Earthdance in Plainfield, MA. Read more about Gopi and his participation at Earthdance here.

252 Prospect Street, Plainfield, MA 01070 | map | directions

Copyright 2011 Earthdance