Board of Directors

Maria Garcia Teutsch  |  Ghan Patel  |  Tim Youd  |  William Ashley  |  Chris Lorenc  |  Britt Govea  |  Jesse Goodman  |  John Handy  |  Susan Roether Zsigmond  |  Aja Pecknold

Maria Garcia Teutsch, President/Chairmaria
Box D-55 
Hartnell College
411 Central Ave. Salinas, CA 93901

Maria Garcia Teutsch’s collection, The Revolution Will Have its Sky, won the 2015 Minerva Rising chapbook competition, judge: Heather McHugh. She is a poet and editor. She has published over 20 journals of poetry as editor-in-chief of the Homestead Review, published by Hartnell College in Salinas, and Ping-Pong journal of art and literature, published by the Henry Miller Library in Big Sur, California.

She teaches poetry and creative writing online. She serves as president of the board of the Henry Miller Memorial Library, and is the founder and EIC of Ping-Pong Free Press.


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Ghan Patel, Secretaryghanpatel
446 Park Place #6
Brooklyn NY 11238

Ghan is a software engineer based in New York City. B.S. Industrial Engineering, M. Eng. Engineering Management, Cornell University class of ’04. Has worked with the Allen Ginsberg Estate, Google, International Center for Transitory Justice, and the Philip Glass Center.


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Tim Youd, Treasurertim-youd-mississippi
300 N. Citrus Avenue
Los Angeles CA 90036

Originally from Massachusetts, Tim Youd has lived in Los Angeles since 1992. He is a working artist as well as a successful internet entrepreneur.  As an artist, Tim has had work shown at various venues throughout the Los Angeles, most recently as the premiere solo show for the newly opened gallery Coagula Curatorial, in LA’s Chinatown.  Tim’s work regularly features text and literature.

Before becoming a full time artist, Tim and his business partner of 20 years built Outlook Amusements, a technology and marketing company specializing in advice-based products and services. The company’s proprietary web-based platform is targeted to a wide range of service industries while also underpinning the success of the in-house brand, California Psychics – the premiere live psychic and astrology network and leading publisher of horoscope and astrological content.

The company has 165 employees and is located in the media district in Burbank. Tim remains an owner and board member. Tim is married with 5 children. The family runs a charitable venture that makes Margo’s Bark Root Beer. Originally a school science fair project, the root beer is now sold in most Whole Foods in Southern California, as well as other restaurants and markets. One hundred percent of the profits are donated to animal rescue efforts, mostly in the Southern California area.

In addition to the 5 kids, the family has 5 dogs, 3 cats, 2 rabbits and a tank of fish. All but the fish have been rescued from the streets and the shelters of Los Angeles. To get the full story, please visit

Tim also sits on the board of two additional non profit organizations: Musica Angelica, Los Angeles’ premiere baroque and early music orchestra & Friends of Los Angeles Animal Shelters, which is dedicated to working with the city’s animal shelters to find new homes for abandoned pets.

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William Ashley, MD
Box 1122
Pismo Beach, CA 93448

William Ashley is a collector who has donated his collection of Henry Miller first editions to the Henry Miller Memorial Library.  He helped Roger Jackson with the Henry Miller Bibliography.  He continues to work as a Radiologist in California, living near Pismo Beach with his partner Adrienne.


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Chris Lorencchrisfire2016
833 Hartford Ave.
San José CA 95125

Chris Lorenc is a writer and teacher focused on wilderness as a spiritual practice. He is an oblate with New Camaldoli Hermitage in Big Sur and a member of the Four Winds Council (a cooperative association comprised of New Camaldoli, Esalen Institute, the Esselen Tribe, and Tassajara Zen Mountain Center).


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Britt Govea

Britt is founder of (((folkYEAH!))) Presents and Spiritual Pajamas Record Co., is a California-born and raised music lover. Working since 2005 under the production banner (((folkYEAH!))) Presents, he has curated many Big Sur and Bay Area gatherings, creating unforgettable moments for both the performers and event attendees.(((folkYEAH!)))’s unique musical events feature contemporary, classic and cutting edge artists who bridge a large gap of musical sounds and styles.

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Jesse Goodman

jessegoodmanmaxolivaLondon, U.K. +447748630044

Jesse has produced an annual benefit for the Henry Miller Library since 2004 bringing world renowned artists such as Patti Smith, Laurie Anderson, Marianne Faithfull and Philip Glass.

He currently lives in London working  for The Weather Channel (TWC)  as their  Director of Business Development.  Previously New Media Manager at E! Entertainment, Goodman has a proven record of growing existing businesses and launching new ones.

Prior to joining E! Entertainment Goodman was Senior Director of Business Development at Studio Moderna, based in Budapest, Hungary.  Goodman  lives on a narrow boat with his partner, Maximiliano Oliva and their dog, Duncan.


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John Handy


71895 Hwy #1
Big Sur, CA 93920

John spent 23 years in the toy industry rising to the level of Senior Vice President of Product Design at the world’s largest toy company, Mattel Inc. He led a department of 160 designers as well as a large network of outside design firms and professional inventors.

Under John’s product leadership, sales for Mattel’s Boys, Entertainment and Games division increased from $400 Million with a net loss of 10% in 1997 to $1.4 Billion with a net operating profit of 15% in 2005: a billion dollar sales increase and profit turnaround of 25% in just 8 years.

He spearheaded the design and launch of the Teenage Mutant Turtles, one of the largest action figure lines of all time, a multi-billion dollar brand for the fledgling Playmates Toys. This was achieved during a one year stint when John left Mattel to join Playmates Toys.

John got Mattel back into the activity toy business in a huge way with the concept of an “umbrella license” utilizing Nickelodeon. He leveraged Mattel’s Disney relationship in a new way creating the $100 Million Lion King Plush line. John and his team took the venerable 30 year old Hot Wheels brand and transformed it from a 200 million dollar US centric brand into a worldwide brand with nearly a Billion dollars in annual retail sales. John believes in the creative power of competition.

He became an expert at securing the most sought after licensed entertainment properties in the toy business through competitive product pitches. Under his leadership Mattel won the rights to the Warner Brothers properties of: Batman, Superman, Justice League and Harry Potter, the Pixar properties of: Toy Story, A Bugs Life and Cars as well as multiple Nickelodeon Network and Disney Entertainment properties.

John loves automotive design. A recent personal project was the creation of the Handy Hog a Flathead Ford V8 powered motorcycle which won Best of Show, Street Customs at the Del Mar Concourse D’Elegance, was featured in Cycle World magazine and spent two years on display in the Peterson Automotive Museum Hot Wheels Hall of Fame.

In 2004 John and his wife, Corinne opened Treebones Resort in Big Sur, California. Overcoming incredible odds Treebones became the first commercial project approved for construction in over 15 years on the Big Sur Coast. It has become the most publicized and popular resort in Big Sur, appearing in feature articles in the LA Times, New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Outside magazine, National Geographic Traveller and 8 times in Sunset magazine.

John graduated Magna cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Design from Arizona State University in 1983. He won first place in every design competition offered during his time in the program including the Mattel Design competition, Rubbermaid Design Competition and the prestigious Industrial Designers Society of America Merit award.

Post graduation he won the Silver Braun Prize for Industrial Design. John’s experience at Mattel has made him an expert in creative leadership, synergistic collaboration and “fueling innovation”. He has a passion for design and has developed “the Red Stilts Process” to share the power of unleashed creativity within organizations. John Currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade, The Henry Miller Memorial Library, the Coast Property Owners Association and the South Coast Land Use Advisory.


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Susan Roether Zsigmondsusan
P.O. Box 488 Big Sur, CA 93920 or
150 Lombard St. Apt. 301 San Francisco, CA 94111

Susan is a writer and film maker. She is a friend of the San Francisco Library; North Beach Citizens: American Film Institute; The Actor’s Studio Playwrights Unit; and the Mecahnics Institute Laibrary and Chess room. Her recent novel “Our Lady of West Hollywood” was listed among “Best of the Independent Press, 2014” by Kirkus Review.


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Aja Pecknold

Aja hails from the Pacific Northwest–Seattle, WA–and has spent the past twelve years working in the music and arts & culture industries. Since 2008, she has managed international touring bands such as Fleet Foxes and acted as a marketing and communications consultant for culture related clients.

Her previous experience ranges from overseeing and managing venues, working as a writer and editor for high-circulation arts publications, as well as publicity and management support for artists such as Pearl Jam. Her work and thirst for exploration has seen her travel the world on a regular basis, documenting the experiences for publications like Purple Magazine as well as her own site Unified Field Collective.

She is the co-curator and co-founder of the songwriters program at acclaimed women’s writing residency, Hedgebrook and sits on the board of directors for the Henry Miller Memorial Library in Big Sur, California.

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