OAEC supports diverse communities to design their own regenerative systems at the regional and local scale.
Our cookbook is a collection of inventive recipes inspired by seasonal eating from our biodiverse Mother Garden, orchards and Wildlands Preserve.
Experience the Occidental Arts & Ecology Center through a video tour and beautiful photographs of our Guest Houses, Meeting Room, Bathhouse, Kitchen & Dining Room, Mother Garden and more.
Our 100% Certified Organic plant nursery specializes in open-pollinated perennials including edible landscaping plants, rare and endangered food crops, drought tolerant ornamentals and habitat plants - all tested in our onsite gardens and appropriate for our bioregion.
OAEC offers the longest consistently running two-week Permaculture Design Certification course in the West. Immerse yourself in information, ideas and inspiration on how to design sustainable, regenerative systems in balance with your home ecosystem.
Our School Garden Teacher Training supports schools to integrate the school garden into multiple subject areas using place-based, experiential learning.
Jenyng has spent over 10 years building companies from the ground up. Before OAEC, she worked as the Finance and Operations Director at Blu Skye, a sustainability consulting company that works with C-level clients in Fortune 500 companies. Within six years, she helped lead the growth of a virtual company to a thirty-person firm in two Bay Area offices managing over $10M+ in gross revenue. Prior to that, she managed finances and built the database infrastructure for an international electronics distribution company with offices in China, Taiwan and the United States. Jenyng has also produced an international and Emmy nominated documentary, Daughter of Taiwan: A Journey Home. Through the eyes of a second-generation immigrant American, it tells the story of history, roots, culture and family and the identities we create for ourselves. Jenyng received her BA in Communications from Evangel University and an MA in Asia Pacific Studies from the University of San Francisco.
On Staff Since: 2014 Phone: 124
I love to build things, whether it’s physically with my hands—planting, woodworking or home crafting—or whether it’s mentally designing and understanding databases, systems and processes. Creating something from nothing or simplifying the complex inspires and excites me. That’s why I love what I do at OAEC. As Operations and Finance Director, my work is about running a fiscally sound and operationally smooth organization. With all our various priorities, projects and partnerships, our financial and operation systems are designed for synergy. Our success lies in our understanding that we are interdependent as well as independent, both within our organization and through the work we do in the world.
I was born in Taiwan. My paternal roots traces back to the Ming Dynasty with the first mass immigration of Mainland Chinese to what was then Formosa. My maternal roots have a more recent color with the mid-20th Century Chinese Civil War and the escape of millions of Kuomintang soldiers and their families to Taiwan, one of them being my grandfather. I continue the story of immigration as my parents brought me to the U.S. when I was a toddler. With very little memory of my life before speaking English, we moved around the U.S., settling in the Midwest and then on the West Coast. I made the move to San Francisco for school but decided ultimately to plant roots in Sonoma County after falling in love with the calm serenity of simple country living. Having known only asphalt jungles and manmade suburbia, I yearned to stand in the natural gardens of earth, watch the wind dance in the trees and listen to the sounds of nature. Now with two little boys, I see how healing and connective the natural world is for human development. Give them a stick and a pile of dirt, and well, the rest is fun.
The names of animals.
My 3-year old can’t wait to tell me a story when I crack his bedroom door open in the mornings, and my 1-year old can’t bounce quick enough to standing as he hollers with joy, “MAMA!” They are my passions. They make me see the world as beautiful and full of possibilities. They make me stand and exist in the moment because it is what matters. They fill me with love and joy with their inexhaustible energy and life. They also teach me what hard work can be. Carl Sandburg said, “A baby is God’s opinion that life should go on.”
I see my job as ensuring the integrity of our facilities and systems as well as the financial health of our organization. OAEC is a complex network of specialties: from our work with the land (garden and wildlands) to being a demonstration site (of an intentional community) to public advocacy. OAEC is also about buildings, beauty, and biodiversity. I love my work because I get to make the complex simple; organize and create systems and structures; and tell stories with numbers. But best of all, I get to do it with amazing people.
The theory of relativity and “even this too shall pass.”
Embracing death. Love becomes deeper. Moments become richer. Life becomes fuller.