Founder and Program Guide
Combining her passion for scientific understanding of the natural world with the emotional draw that brings us to the forest, Katie launched In Your Element intending to help people rediscover a sense of belonging in wild nature settings, reduce technology induced stress and anxiety, and better understand the human connection to nature. Whether you’re interested in launching a transformative Workplace Wellness program or you’d like expand your personal wellness practice by attending one of our classes or forest therapy walks, Katie will be your guide.
Katie is an avid world traveler, and has explored nature across five continents – from the Sahara Desert of Africa to the Amazon Rainforest of South America. She began her career as an engineer and specialist working for over eight years in the environmental sector, while also expanding her experience as a yoga teacher and backcountry hiker. Combining all that she has learned in her travels, professional experience and education, Katie believes that there is an entry point for everyone to connect with the world of wellness that waits in nature – her mission is to hold open the door!
- Bachelor’s of Science in Civil Engineering, specializing in water resources from Michigan State University
- Certified Forest Therapy Guide, trained by the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy
- 200-hr Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT), trained by Soma Yoga Institute in Costa Rica, with four years of yoga teaching experience & 12 years of personal yoga practice
- Wilderness First Aid Basics certification, trained by Backpacker + AimAdventure U
- Katie has served on the Board of Directors for the West Michigan Sustainable Business Forum & the Michigan Recycling Coalition
Luke Venechuk is an avid hiker and outdoor enthusiast. He is certified in Wilderness First Aid (WFA) with the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) and has traveled back country in Patagonian Chile and Argentina, throughout the Appalachian Mountains of the eastern United States and more.
Luke holds a strong passion for time spent in nature and enjoys reading about the great naturalists and adventurers of the 18th and 19th centuries. Luke assists in our programs in a variety of ways; you may spot him brewing tea at one of our Forest Therapy Walks, waiting at the trail head to guide you to class if you’re running late, or offering a hand in the case of a first aid emergency in the forest.
When asked if there was anything else he’d like to share about his love of nature, Luke offered up his favorite quote:
“Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn.” ― John Muir, The Mountains of California