WHO WE ARE
Prior to founding Lodestone, Bill served as the Director of Safety at The School for Field Studies (SFS) for 8 years and as an instructor/program director at Outward Bound for 16 years. He was chair of the Forum on Education Abroad’s pilot incident database and co-chair for the Forum Standards Institute: "Beyond the Basics of Health, Safety and Security" for 3 years. As a faculty committee member for Wilderness Medical Associates International, Bill designed the Travel Med First Aid curriculum for Habitat for Humanity International and has taught extensively overseas. He holds a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Colorado and an M.Ed from Harvard University. He is a Nationally Registered Emergency Medical Technician (NREMT) and holds a CTH from the International Society of Travel Medicine.
Lili joined Lodestone in September 2011 as Managing Partner. She brings 20 years of experience in international education and management. For 10 years Lili served as Director of Admissions and Institutional Relations at The School for Field Studies (SFS). As a senior administrator, she was integrally involved in health, safety and security management and served as the primary backup for emergencies in the field as well as public spokesperson. She has an extensive history of building and maintaining strong relationships with a variety of institutions and organizations, where effective communication and timeliness are crucial. After serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Central African Republic developing and delivering health education trainings, Lili worked as a Recruitment Coordinator in their Boston offices. Lili holds a B.A. in International Relations from the University of Colorado and an M.A. in International and Intercultural Management from the School for International Training.
Trainers, Reviewers and Advisers
Sawyer M.L. Alberi
Sawyer earned her BS in Management and Commission from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy after which she served as a Coast Guard Officer in the Atlantic specializing in Search and Rescue, Drug Interdiction, and Immigration Operations. She continued her education with a M.A. in Leadership Education from Prescott College and an Education Doctorate in Transformative Leadership Education from the University of New England. Having taught on every continent and in many different countries and cultures, Sawyer pursues research in education with a focus on gender, generational learning, and media. Sawyer also teaches part time at Johnson State College in the Behavioral Sciences and Wellness and Alternative Medicine department where she also contributes to curriculum development.
After her first CPR card in 1978 and her EMT in 1994, Sawyer continued to also work in medicine in the civilian sector as well as the Vermont Army National Guard where she served as a flight medic in 2006 and in Afghanistan in 2010 in medical operations. As the senior lead instructor for Reporters Instructed in Saving Colleagues (RISC), a non-profit organization that has trained hundreds of conflict freelance journalists battlefield medicine, Sawyer developed a first aid field guide and curriculum for nontraditional conflict participants.
Jeff has trained leaders in global risk management for 18 years. He directed an international semester program and served as Executive Director and Safety Reviewer with Outward Bound. Jeff also developed and ran international programming as Executive Director of the Boojum Institute for Experiential Education. He has provided emergency medicine and remote rescue training in nine countries since 1997 as a lead instructor with Wilderness Medical Associates and Adventure Risk Management. Jeff has been a National Registry EMT since 1993, and has extensive Search & Rescue and ambulance experience, including directing rescues in the US and abroad. He has served as an expert witness regarding wilderness safety and an accreditation reviewer with the Association for Experiential Education. Jeff studied at Universidad Kino in Sonora, Mexico, and has two BA degrees from Prescott College and an MS in Management from Antioch University.
John is a marine biologist and educator who brings over 20 years of experience conducting research from remote field stations in Belize, Philippines, Australia, Papua New Guinea, Turks and Caicos Islands and Panama. John was the Director of the Center for Marine Resource Studies for 3 years in Turks and Caicos Islands, as well as the inaugural Director of the Tropical Island Biodiversity Studies program in Panama for The School for Field Studies (SFS). John designed, reviewed and updated policies and practices and trained staff to manage the health, safety and security of all students and employees. Additionally, John oversaw all waterfront activities including a motor vessel fleet, scuba diving and snorkeling. He has managed complex relationships with local communities and has overseen all tropical cyclone procedures. John holds a PhD and MAppSc from James Cook University in Australia, and a BSc from St. Andrews University in Scotland.
Deborah is an international educator and experienced global program manager. Deborah was Director of Programs at Global Learning Across Borders’, managing all aspects of the organization’s international immersion gap year and school partnership programs. Over the past 10+ years, she has designed, developed, and led international and domestic high school and college programs in over 20 countries with various organizations such as the Experiment in International Living, Semester at Sea, The Dwight School, World Leadership School, Institute for Civic Leadership, Free the Children, and CIEE. Additionally, Deborah is Founder and President of Gap Year Guru, a gap year consulting service. She has previously worked at and consulted for UNICEF’s P²D Program and the Avenues School. Deborah holds her MA in Intercultural Service, Leadership, and Management from the School for International Training and served on World Learning’s Board of Directors.
Laurie is a nurse practitioner with expertise in travel and tropical medicine. She has 21 years of teaching experience in higher education, and a clinical specialty in adolescent and young adult health. She has transitioned from developing web-based courses for advanced practice nurses to designing interactive tools to boost risk reduction skills among student travelers. She has conducted a study on the topic of study abroad student risk perceptions and prevention behaviors, published in the Journal of Travel Medicine, and more recently has completed research on the topic of malaria education. Laurie holds PhD, MS, and BS degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she was an NIH/NINR fellow and completed a certificate program in global health. She also holds Certificate in Travel Health from the International Society of Travel Medicine.
Deborah worked for 11 years as Program Director and Captain of the GERONIMO Program, St. George’s School’s offshore Marine and Nautical Science program and as Faculty and Captain at Sea Education Association. She currently serves on the Ships Operations and Safety Committee of Tall Ships America and was its chairman for 3 years and has worked as their Risk Management Consultant. As an instructor at Maritime Simulation Institute she has taught First Aid and CPR to mariners. She is a US Coast Guard licensed Master, 1600 tons Oceans Auxiliary Sail and has sailed as a professional mariner since 1986. Deborah is an Emergency Medical Technician (NREMT) and U.S. Coast Guard Medical Person in Charge (MPIC) and has served as Medical Officer on several vessels. Deborah received her B.A. in Zoology from Connecticut College.
John lives in Taiwan, an island with more than 250 peaks higher than 3000m. He spent most of his 20s and 30s in the mountains doing wildlife research, wildlife filming, guiding and teaching. John is the founder of Miasan Outdoor Center and was the leader of the Taiwan youth expedition to summit Denali in 2004. Additionally, John has been an instructor with Wilderness Medical Associates (WMA) since 2004, and is currently the director of WMA-Taiwan. He is also the evaluator of mountain guide certification program, manages hiking programs for school age groups and works with aboriginal hunters closely, running a traditional knowledge and survival program. Finally, John teaches Risk Management, wilderness medicine, mountaineering, ultralight backpacking, and search and rescue courses for the National Parks, Forest Bureau and Fire departments all around Taiwan.
Robin has a deep background in environmental science and emergency management. She has over 10 years of experience working in remote environments, overseas and in emergency medicine and has served as a field health and safety specialist for geologic explorations. She worked as an international incident monitor and analyst for NC4, a company providing external situational awareness to industries and governments worldwide. Robin also served as a safety program specialist for the School for Field Studies (SFS). She is currently involved with disaster response at the state and federal level, including deployments with a Disaster Medical Assistance Team (DMAT). She is a lead instructor for Wilderness Medical Associates, International (WMA). Robin is a Maine-licensed EMT-Basic and holds an M.S. in Disaster Science from the University of Richmond.
As the former owner and manager of American Universities International Programs (AUIP), Laura Sessions has over 12 years of experience in managing and operating international programs in countries as varied as Fiji, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, Belize, the United Kingdom, South Africa and Antarctica. Based in New Zealand, she has worked with thousands of students, faculty and administrators and has managed a wide range of incidents from medical emergencies and misbehaviour to sexual assault and mental health conditions. She holds a BA in Biology from Oberlin College and an MSc in Ecology and PhD in Science Communication from the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, New Zealand.
Rick is the Senior Director for Habitat for Humanity Canada’s Global Village Program. For the last 9 years he has been responsible for oversight and risk management of an international program that now engages 1,800-2,000 volunteers per year and provides approximately $1 million in added support for home building internationally. He also leads Global Village trips specializing mostly in Africa. Rick chairs Habitat International’s Minimum Standards committee that sets the standards for volunteers traveling internationally on Habitat builds. Before starting with Habitat, Rick spent 15 years working for the Canadian Outward Bound Wilderness School as Operations Director including being a member of their crisis/emergency management team.
Mike's background includes a mixture of management, curriculum development, first response and research, all related to medical and patient care in unconventional settings. He is the past Canadian director of Wilderness Medical Associates International and is recognized in Canada as a major influence in the development of wilderness medicine training. As a researcher and consultant, he has been involved with research on the epidemiological link of first aid training for international disaster relief and humanitarian workers. He has over 15 years of rural and urban experience as a paramedic and a background as an expedition medic and rescue tech in international settings, including 8 seasons in Antarctica. He also works as the Canadian clinical director and medical coordinator for a variety of mass gathering medical events, including the race Tough Mudder and the largest country music festival in Canada.