ACORN began as an alternative school, the Acorn Independent Learning Center, on the Mendocino Coast of Northern California in the 1980’s. In the late 1990’s ACORN’S founders helped create the Pacific Community Charter School in Point Arena, a publicly funded kindergarten through 12th grade charter school serving coastal communities from Salt Point to Elk. After the creation of the Charter School ACORN shifted its focus to fundraising and providing support to local educational programs.
In 2013 the Acorn Independent Learning Center was renamed ACORN Partners in Education and relocated to Windy Hollow Farm. Since that time ACORN has been developing and delivering educational programs and community events while fostering local partnerships. Current partners include The Grace Project, Pacific Community Charter School, Friends of Point Arena-Stornetta Lands, BLM Ukiah Field Office, This Will Take Time, and Windy Hollow Farm.
Educational programs are developed in collaboration with teaching staff and focus on environmental stewardship, community engagement and leadership skills. Current youth programs include Growing Green in the Garden, Students Protecting the Coast, Local Access to Global Music & Dance, and Windy Hollow Farm Camp. ACORN also hosts events for the larger community, including the Waves & Whales 5K Trail RunWalk and Community Film Festivals. ACORN programs are supported through grants, fundraising events, program fees and individual donations.
Our board is comprised of community members who are committed to supporting ACORN’s mission through their personal and professional work. Windy Hollow Farm’s Jennifer Ketring serve as the ACORN Director and Ben Duggan contributes as an ACORN Advisor. Current board members and contractors (as pictured below) include: Terri Lynn Heath, Board Member; Ben Duggan, ACORN Advisor; Jennifer Ketring, ACORN Director; Rebecca Willhoit, Board Member; Nathan Ramser, Secretary; Shauna Boyd, Treasurer; Todd Orenick, President.