MEA's team is made up of passionate people devoted to our mission and service to this community is the ground where all of our efforts are rooted. This means everything. And each of us brings experience equal to the depth of our commitment to the modern elder movement.
Founders & Partners
MEA’s founder is a hospitality entrepreneur and New York Times bestselling author. His book, Wisdom@Work, forms the core of MEA’s curriculum and is inspired by his experience — as both a mentor and an intern (“mentern”) — when he was well into his 50s, as Airbnb’s Head of Global Hospitality and Strategy. What no CV (or Chip) will tell you (but he was overruled by his team) is that his greatest assets are his kindness and generosity, his care for the people he works with, and his infectious laugh.
Home is Baja and Breckenridge for this former pro snowboarder who’s launched and operated hotels, produced events on beaches and glaciers, managed pro athletes, and worn the hats of writer, restaurateur, and more. The common thread? Christine is passionate about creating experiences that change people’s lives—be it in our classroom, our community, or in our workplace. Christine cares deeply about the wellbeing and happiness of her amazing team and the broader El Pescadero community where she lives with her husband Josh and their family of rescue dogs.
Jeff is a seasoned leader with an entrepreneurial mind, teacher’s heart, and seeker’s soul. After stops at NASA, IKEA and Nike, he landed in Baja at midlife and was inspired to stay...for good. Jeff is a world-class “noticer,” devoted to thinking about the tools we all need to live better lives, and leading the creation of those tools with brilliant collaborators. He is also the founder of the Baja Sage community and is co-visioning MEA Santa Fe. Jeff and his beloved family call El Pescadero home.
A philosopher at heart and placemaker by trade, the real estate investment and development path led Skylar to specialize in hospitality and senior care. As his work progressed, he became intrigued with how to create places that help people flourish, particularly as they age. When Skylar attended MEA, he knew he'd met his match and set out to help champion our expansion. Outside of MEA, you can find this proud new papa sauntering about the countryside with his wife, son, and Old English Sheepdog.
Kari is a digital intimacy master, creating deep connections IRL and URL. Curious about everything, she's a lifelong entrepreneur and expert in the longevity industry. Kari developed and facilitates our MEA Online programs. She and her fiancé—they met in their MEA Baja beta cohort—live in California.
Java is a pre-med student, turned chef, turned filmmaker, turned marketer. Transitions are baked in at this point. After 2 decades in the outdoor and fashion industries, he arrived at MEA. First as a student, and now as a beacon for the brand. A curious soul living every day as if it were his first.
Deb has made a career out of using her words, and her voice, for good. After releasing Wisdom@Work and launching MEA, she was inspired to grow the modern elder movement full-time, in Baja and now into the USA. A lifelong seeker of wisdom, Deb lives next to a redwood grove with her hubby, son and pups.
Leslie has a passion for service, bringing people together...and adventure! She danced on Germany’s Brandenburg gate, rode a wild Balinese elephant, and witnessed Africa’s “Big 5” up close. A lifelong seeker, with a Masters in Spiritual Psychology, Leslie is often found hiking near her Colorado home.
Gail DiBerardinis is a veteran hospitality leader — from James Beard restaurants to GM of the Hotel San Cristóbal in Baja. She takes a special interest in creating healthy environments where staff and clients alike can thrive. Gail lives in El Pescadero with her husband and posse of rescue animals.
Linda has a wealth of knowledge in creating organizational diversity and inclusion programs. She’s a passionate teacher and trainer, adept at educating and bridge building. Her work focuses on getting to the heart of the matter by cultivating intentional and mindful behaviors toward positive change.
Araceli began her hospitality career at Ritz Carlton, Cancun, and has skyrocketed since then. She’s the mighty force who keeps the wheels on the bus here at MEA, treating her guests with grace and her staff like family. Araceli lives in Todos Santos with her “guapa” daughter who looks just like her.
Chef Tony feeds our bellies and souls with 5-star, locally-sourced, inspired cuisine. To him, food is an expression of love and you can taste his devotion in every bite. When we say he’s a rockstar, we’re not kidding, he was once in a famous reggae band, and still rocks the mic on special occasions.
El Pescadero, Baja California Sur, Mexico born and raised, Alondra joined MEA as an intern while finishing her Tourism degree from UABS and we just refused to let her go. (Christine met “Alo” when she was just 8-years-old and says that she’s always been an epic caregiver and thoughtful old soul.)
Our Mexican mystic guide, Saul is a Yoruban-trained shaman. Baja is where the “spiritual wifi” receives 5 bars. And Saul’s connection to the natural world, with a unique ability to help us peer behind the curtain of what the eye can’t see, is just one of the reasons we hold this magic soul so dear.
Curiosity led Teddi from life as a pro skateboarder to Baja. His approach to teaching yoga and meditation is clear, practical, and grounding as he makes it incredibly easy for first-timers to dip their toes in the water—never feeling overwhelmed or daunted—guiding them back to their own true nature.
Our resident scientist and healer, Hesed holds a M. Sci in Sustainable Development and is a Reiki Master trained in yoga, vipassana meditation, tai chi, chi kung and a massage therapist certified in Aurora, India. Hesed uniquely integrates scientific systems with deep healing practices in his work.
Caitlin was a semi-professional soccer player before putting down roots in Baja Sur. She is now deeply embedded, managing various community initiatives including the Zero Waste Alliance and Baja Sage community. Caitlin cultivates shared understanding by connecting humans and nature on a deep level.
We are a dedicated team of individuals who tend the soil and soul of this place and all who travel to our campus. Our service family of administrative, kitchen, housekeeping, gardening and maintenance gurus are world-class. Each role is interconnected and vital to MEA’s thriving. We love what we do!