Meet the founders and core designers of Surplus Permaculture Design. Not only are they highly professional and competent but also a lot of fun!
As managing director of the Panya Project, Christian Shearer has worked extensively in tropical climates with earthen construction, ecological agriculture, and the regeneration of degraded land. Christian lives part-time in northern Thailand, and is available for design as well as on-the-ground implementation management & education. Christian also sits on the advisory board for WeForest, a foundation focused on reforesting 20 million square km in the next ten years to help stave off climate change. One of Christian’s areas of expertise is creative resource management, connecting the “waste” products from one industry to the inputs of another for optimal eco-social profitability. Christian is currently building an Earthship for his family and has been recently focused on Permaculture Design education. He has recently opened an education center in Teton Valley, Idaho, and has taught a number of courses internationally, including in Thailand, Nicaragua, India, Malaysia, Taiwan and the United States.
Geoffroy Godeau is from Belgium where he graduated in landscape architecture. He discovered permaculture in Nicaragua, while traveling the world. He has been living on and off at the Panya Project for the last five years, learning and teaching mainly about natural building. He has been working and teaching on natural building projects in Belgium as well, and investigating and practicing permaculture techniques in landscaping projects. He is also part of “brin de paille” the French speaking permaculture network in Europe.
Brecht Deriemaeker, originally from Belgium, graduated with master degrees in both Electromechanical Engineering and Industrial Product Design. As a design engineer, he did technology transfer at ESA (European Space Agency), he designed and prototyped a radically new way of diagnosing stroke patients at the University Hospital in Brussels, he developed a high pressure component failure detection for the Swedish Waterjet Cutting Industry and did numerous appropriate technology installations all around the world. These installations include solar energy, wind power, water purification, highly efficient wood combustion for essential oil distillation, high-temperature medical waste incineration and many natural building projects.
As a professional Permaculture consultant and designer, Brecht has worked on permaculture masterplans for projects in China, India, Guatemala, Thailand and Barbados. He combines permaculture with engineering and his ambition is to redesign the world’s industrial and agricultural systems into examples of true regeneration. He doesn’t believe in isolated technical problems but looks at design in a holistic context with problems as pointers towards huge opportunities for global change. His strengths are analytical thinking, 3D modeling, technical prototyping, tropical agriculture, off-grid systems and website design. He loves to work internationally and responds well to challenging and fast-changing situations.
Adam Dusen is the founder and director of Hundred Fruit Farm, a 10-acre permaculture farm in Southeastern Pennsylvania. Adam has a master’s degree in sustainable development from Linkoping University and is a permaculture designer, educator, organic farmer, aquaponics consultant, and organic farm inspector. Adam has been involved in sustainable agriculture for over a decade in a wide variety of ecosystems around the world, initially apprenticing on a small diversified organic farm in Pennsylvania for several seasons, helping manage the Panya Project in Thailand over a period of several years, working as a permaculture farm manager at the Center for Sustainable Development in The Bahamas, and most recently returning to the U.S. to start Hundred Fruit Farm in 2015. Adam’s primary focus is on productive and economically resilient permaculture and aquaponic systems. In The Bahamas, he managed a 40,000 liter commercial aquaponics system and has designed and helped design and install a commercial aquaponics system in Iran. At Hundred Fruit Farm, Adam is working on establishing the premier center of fruit diversity in the mid-Atlantic, growing over 100 different kinds of fruit and developing a multi-species orchard, food forest, and permaculture nursery.
For more information about Adam, you can find a more detailed bio here.
Lola Byron is originally from Birmingham England. She has been a thriving Permaculturist and natural builder since completing her PDC in 2010. Following this she was an active urban Permaculturist designing and implementing a variety of community gardens and leading natural building and gardening workshops in and around the city of Bristol, England. With a background in studying and teaching Fine Art and Sculpture she loves to apply these artistic skills to create beautiful buildings from earth, specialising in adobe, cob and earthbags. Having now completed 6 house builds, project managing 4 of these, she is always excited to pass on her knowledge and inspire and empower others to re-connect with the earth, make positive changes and become more self-reliant. Lola has been the natural building manager at Panya Project since 2013, teaching numerous PDC’s, hands-on Permaculture and Natural Building Courses. Lola is available for Permaculture and natural building consultations and ground level implementation and management.
Kyle Smith is originally from Swaziland, Africa. In 2005 Kyle practiced horticulture and community living on a kibbutz in Israel where he was inspired to pursue a career in horticulture. During his studies he completed an internship at Soil for Life, a Cape Town based non-profit organization teaching people how to build the soil and grow healthy plants using organic and low-cost methods. After completing his studies in horticulture he worked at Kirstenbosch Botanical gardens in Cape Town, South Africa. His main focuses were conserving indigenous plant species, rehabilitating degraded ecosystems, designing and establishing education gardens on the grounds of the botanic garden. During this time at the botanical gardens he realized the importance of conserving natural ecosystem while providing basic human needs, this interest and learning pathway lead him to the Panya Project Permaculture Education Centre in Northern Thailand. Kyle is currently the perennial plant manger and a long-term community member at the Panya where he has been facilitating Permaculture design courses, organic gardening and natural building workshops; additionally he has been supervising volunteers, and interns developing and maintaining systems at Panya. Kyle is passionate about conserving soil ecosystems, plant propagation and small-scale ecological agriculture. He is working towards empowering people to grow their own food, become more self reliant, and regenerate degraded ecosystem by consulting, designing,on-site implementation and teaching.