Instructors & Contributors

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Liesel Teversham

Parzival Academy has loved working with Liesel Teversham to support our students in finding and understanding their unique strengths.

Liesel Teversham supports sensitive souls to build quiet confidence, helping them to work through the blocks and fears that stop them, so they can embrace their true, authentic strengths and believe in their value.

In her previous careers as a musician, and then as a computer programmer, Liesel saw how quiet people can be unfairly overlooked. While working in the stressful IT industry in 2005, she stumbled upon her true calling by accident when her (now) husband mentioned a strange therapy, created by a Stanford Engineer, to reduce anxiety and fear. She loved the weird and wonderful EFT tapping method so much that she went on to become a practitioner and later trainer in South Africa.

In 2017 she moved from South Africa to the UK with her husband, where she works with introverts all around the world. She’s the author of 2 books (No Problem. The Upside of Saying No, and Coping with a Dying Pet), and has hosted 2 podcasts (Mindful Career Transitions, and Grow Yourself to Grow your Business).

She also writes the monthly newsletter for the EFT International organization, a Charity that upholds EFT standards globally.

Two of her favorite tools are EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), and CliftonStrengths. Used together, they provide a solid foundation for any introvert who wants to make a difference in the world in their unique, quiet way.

Find more about Liesel at

Amy Ellis

Our personal chef for our Orientation and Graduation weeks, Amy Ellis of Color Cuisine, focuses on providing an array of the freshest seasonal, regional, natural foods. As a natural foods chef, she prepares nutrient-dense foods in a way that best suits the body for balance, harmony, energy and optimal health.

Each vibrant array of color in her beautifully prepared food relates to a spectrum of nutrients the body needs for optimal health.

We’ll have a wonderful menu for all, and Amy can accommodate a variety of dietary needs including paleo, vegetarian, vegan, raw, gluten-free, kosher, and allergy-restricted.

Amy will provide us with an abundance of flavors and colors that we know your taste buds will enjoy. As a bonus, she is also helping to guide students toward deeper understanding of nourishment, wellness, food preparation methods, and connection around the table and in the kitchen. We’re so blessed to have Amy on our team.

Learn more about Amy at

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Avisek Majumdar

Avisek Majumdar, or Avi as we endearingly refer to him, was born in India, growing up in the middle of the yoga and mindfulness culture. He went through a long path of learning and practicing under the guidance of great spiritual mentors from the tradition of Bihar School of Yoga/Satyananda Yoga.

After continuing his spiritual practice in parallel with academic studies in Electronics & Telecommunication, he chose another type of engineering to be his purpose in life –’spiritual engineering’.

Avi believes that from the quest of self search, the ancient science of Yoga was birthed, and every branch of Yoga directly or indirectly sheds light onto the path of self-exploration.
Avi’s teachings for Parzival students are intended to provide them with a space and opportunity to explore their inner nature.

Avi lives in Romania where he founded ‘Prakriti School of Yoga’ and “Conscious Living Romania”, offering regular yoga classes & corporate workshops in Romania (Bucharest, Timisoara & Cluj-Napoca) and other countries.

Avi has also trained with various body-mind teachers and in various approaches, including Non Violent Communication, Transactional Analysis and meditation.

Brian Smith

We’re thrilled to have Brian Smith supporting us to bring the much needed education of Diversity, Equity and Inclusivity to our program. Brian’s Overcoming Racism program is urgently needed in the world today, and Brian is happy to be bringing his work to young adults through the Parzival Academy.

Brian is a Grief Guide, Life Purpose Coach, and Small Business Consultant. His mission is to help people rediscover who they are and why they are here. In those two questions lie the secrets to not only surviving this life but thriving.

His vision is to create a world where everyone has a sense of purpose and fulfillment. He believes that if we know the “why”, we can endure any “how’. 

Brian became well acquainted with grief in 2015 after the sudden passing of his fifteen-year-old daughter Shayna. He has studied the nature of life and death and how to progress through grief of all kinds from a job loss, divorce, illness, the death of a loved one, and of course the pain connected with ongoing inequities in the world today. 

Brian is the author of Grief 2 Growth: Planted. Not Buried, and the host and creator of the Grief 2 Growth podcast. He’s on the Board of Helping Parents Heal, and is the Vice President of The SoulPhone Foundation.

You can learn more about Brian at

Brian Smith
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Deb Matlock

Deb Matlock grew up in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado, and is deeply committed to nurturing the connection between people, animals, earth, and spirit.

She has spent twenty-five years working as a professional environmental and humane educator and naturalist. She has also spent more than a decade mentoring graduate students in environmental and outdoor education at Prescott College.

Deb offers nature-based spiritual coaching, animal communication, nature connection workshops, and retreats through her business, Wild Rhythms.

Her vision is to help create a world deeply rooted in compassion and empathy for all life where wildness and the natural world are integrated into our human communities. Her work is rooted in ecological identity, ecopsychology, spiritual ecology, and the integration of the more-than-human voice into modern, Western culture.

Deb is passionate about helping people find connection and deep spiritual meaning in their lives and in the places where they live. She holds a Master of Arts in Environmental Education from Prescott College, and Master of Science in Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies from Antioch University New England (AUNE), and is also pursuing her doctoral degree in environmental studies at AUNE.

She lives in Colorado with her partner and their crew of rescued dogs and cats. Her passions are being outdoors, spending time with her animals, listening to music, reading, and gardening.

You can learn more about Deb at and

Tad Hargrave

We are so grateful to add Tad Hargrave to our Parzival contributors. 

Tad Hargrave is a hippy who developed a knack for marketing (and then learned how to be a hippy again).

He has a deep care for socio-entrepreneurialism, and supporting individuals to effectively and authentically share their gifts. 

“There are so many people in the world doing such incredible things! Green businesses, holistic practitioners, local and independent retail . . . But they’re an expert in what they do – not in articulating what they do; not in marketing what they do. …The people whose businesses are the most cutting edge, inspiring and radical are often on the most shoestring budgets. But these are the businesses the world needs right now. We need to see more examples of successful conscious businesses. People thriving doing something they love that also makes a positive difference in the world.” says Tad.

Tad lives in Victoria, BC, and is drawn to conversations about how we might tend to the harm that’s done in communities in ways that leave the community stronger and more whole at the end – not more shattered.

Tad’s passions include his Celtic heritage (he’s conversationally fluent in Scottish Gaelic), Theater (including improv comedy and magic), DEI (see his blog Healing From Whiteness), Non Violent Communication, permaculture, and conscious youth development & education. He even grew up attending an alternative “hippy school” called Waldorf that he believes played a part in setting the stage for his own path of bucking the status quo. 

Tad’s unique, diverse, and exceptionally interesting biography is too long to include here. You can learn more about Tad and his beautiful work at

Tad Hargrave
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Debra Spitulnik

With Parzival’s love of story and finding one’s voice, Debra brings the beautiful teachings of the power of speech to complement our work with biography, archetypes, the art of communication, and embodied learning.

Debra Spitulnik is the Creative Speech teacher for the Antioch University, Center for Anthroposophy and the Washington Waldorf School. For three decades she’s brought her love of creative speech to students, teachers and young adults nationwide. Debra’s unique perspective from her years as a class teacher enlivens plays, poetry, and story in grades 1-12. Debra is an adjunct professor at Antioch University New England and the Center for Anthroposophy, teaching speech, drama, storytelling, and curriculum to graduate students. In addition, she is the Pedagogical Lead for a new Waldorf Inspired charter school initiative in Baltimore City. 

Education: Diploma in the arts of Speech and Drama, PerformInternational; M.Ed., Waldorf Education, Antioch University New England; B.S. Elementary and Special Education, Syracuse University.

Trian Bruma

Parzival Contributor Trian Bruma calls himself a Learning Architect, designing and nurturing learning environments for self-directed learners. He’s on a mission to instigate the rise of universities owned and self-organized by the learners.

Trian co-founded a small 150 student freedom-centered university in Bucharest, Romania called The Alternative University, where students direct their own learning. Everyone is a student, and everyone is a teacher. The Alternative University is now in its second incarnation, focused on creating open-source learning tools for self-organized learning environments and action-research in self-organized universities. Its wider scope will be to weave the ideas and tools of emergent, self-determined and self-organized learning with other aspects of free, fair and alive cultures (regenerative agriculture, food sovereignty zero-waste living, free and open-source software, cosmo-local production based on open design, alternative currencies, decentralized computing and energy production) in order to accelerate the learning and unlearning needed for the transition to such regenerative human cultures.

The Alternative University is part of the Ecoversities Alliance, that Trian considers the international home for his work.

Trian Bruma
“ Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”
Steve Jobs
Founder, Apple Inc.

Step into a meaningful and successful future.

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