Kirby Fry, Executive Director

Kirby graduated from Texas Agricultural & Mechanical University (Texas A&M) in 1989 with a degree in Natural Resource Conservation from the Forest Sciences Department.

Pursuing a love and appreciation of the natural world he also participated in a Wind River Wilderness Course, and an Instructor’s Course with the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) in Leander, Wyoming.

After graduating college, Kirby served in the United States Peace Corps in the Highlands of Guatemala in the Peace Corps’ Agroforestry Program where he built tree nurseries, planted forests for construction and firewood, and created conservation terraces for agriculture, soil and water management.

In 1993, Kirby found out about a permaculture design course being taught by Bill Mollison at Fossil Rim Wildlife Center in Glen Rose, Texas.  He took that course and spent the next three years at Fossil Rim Wildlife Center studying under both Bill Mollison and Allan Savory helping to improve the watershed management of, and the grazing systems across Fossil Rim’s 10,000 acres.

Since 1997 Kirby has been living in McDade, Texas and working in Central Texas as a natural builder and sustainable landscape designer. Over the past 20 years Kirby has also been teaching permaculture design courses, implementing sustainable design systems through Southern Exposure, and since 2013, overseeing the installation of edible, beneficial, perennial food gardens though volunteer events called Permablitzes.

When he is not teaching, directing, and mentoring the ERC team, Kirby works building houses, gardens, and sustainable design systems. See more of Kirby’s work on the Southern Exposure website.

Read more here.

Woody Welch, Executive Creative Director 

From newsworthy fresh water issues to the world’s largest solar power plants, from world record-breaking athletes in Scotland for Dell to an on-going personal project narrative of the groundbreaking Earthship Biotecture project in Taos New Mexico, Woody’s pointed curiosity precedes him. He has been covering his One River project, an in-depth narrative about the Guadalupe River Watershed, for over 30 years.

Woody thinks out of the box and is constantly implementing creative strategies to tell visual stories effectively and poignantly for our ever changing world. For the past 25 years Woody has been in the trenches photographing the human condition from the air, and has honed his focus to cutting edge solar projects around the U.S. His knowledge about our transition from our commodity based power grid to a more sustainable model is extensive and ever expanding.

Woody completed his Permaculture Design Certificate in the Summer of 2015 and is transforming his small homestead in New Braunfels into a sustainable paradise. He earned his BA in Mass Communications from Texas State University. Woody loves up-cycling reclaimed wood, swimming in the Comal River with his daughter Edie Monet and their best friend “River” dog all the while spreading the good news about permaculture and sustainable design.

Jennifer Goode, Director of Outreach & Development

Jennifer Goode is a native of Central Texas with a passion for community empowerment and sustainable development.

Jennifer holds a BA in Global Studies from St. Edward’s University focused on international development, in particular the potential for poverty alleviation through community development measures, in addition to a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University focused on natural resource management and the intersections of sustainability, society, and urban planning.

She currently works with several small nonprofits in the greater Austin area focusing on a range of issues from water quality to affordable housing, helping these organizations implement more efficient internal systems and improved outward communication.

While Jennifer has been based back in Central Texas for a few years, she does hope to return to the world of international development with an increased knowledge of sustainable design and permaculture systems so that the benefits of these practices can be experienced across the globe.

Read more here.