SEA Aging-Out Storyteller Bios
Natalie St.Martin: Visual artist, welcome committee, storyteller
Natalie St.Martin a community-based visual artist and social justice activist. She teaches painting at Seattle Pacific University, and has an MFA in Interdisciplinary Art from Goddard College. For Natalie, art is a creative approach to everyday needs and tasks – she creates paintings, fiber art, poetry and stories that document life and wrestle with pain and hope. She is passionate about people, and volunteers with various non-profits in Seattle, including the anti trafficking organization REST. She is honored to help share the stories of people who grew up in foster care with SalaamGarage Local.
Jeff Bettger: writer ad co-producer
Jeff is a volunteer pastor at Mars Hill Downtown in Seattle, WA. As an urban missionary through Great Commission Missionaries, Jeff is the executive director of Artist Reformation, a non-profit dedicated to mobilizing creatives with ideas that mean and do something. Jeff writes his own ideas in the blog Locust N Honey, and occasionally on The Resurgence. Jeff loves to empower others to use their creativity to help and serve people.
Jeff began his ministry through art as the lead singer in the early Tooth & Nail Records post-punk pioneer Ninety Pound Wuss, and later as lead in Suffering and the Hideous Thieves. He is married to his high school sweetheart, Teresa, and together they have three daughters.
Molly Miltenberger: video editor
Molly Miltenberger is a writer and former social worker based in Montana with a B.A. in Liberal Arts, Culture and Philosophy from New St. Andrew’s College and a certificate in Creative Writing from Exeter College of Oxford University. She is most interested in telling a good story that communicates the grace of everyday life and in translating the voices of those who are unable to speak for themselves.
Sylvia Hadnot: Writer, photographer, multi-media production, social media co-lead
Sylvia believes deeply in the saying “all people are created equal.” She loves to tell unspoken stories, from the despair of lost lives to the joy of new ones. This love overflows from a deeper passion for people and community. For Sylvia, a day well spent includes hanging with her homies and new friends alike, all while sparking their individual creativity’s. As a young woman from a less than stable home, this project excites her with opportunities to tell the stories of those unheard.
David Lawrence: Photographer, writer, social media co-lead
I am 20 years old, or to some, 20 years young. I am a student, a friend, and a son. I live in the Central District and have been in Seattle for almost 2 years now. I am a story teller who wants to tell life as it is, while also leaving room to dream up what it could be. I seek to share stories through the mediums of photography and writing. It is with these two aspects of art that I find I come most alive.
John Harrison: filmmaker and photographer
John Harrison is a Seattle-based filmmaker and photographer dedicated to sharing compelling stories about the human experience. John’s work has taken him into the living rooms, cubicles, and kitchens of individuals and families around the world. From police cruisers in Alaska to clandestine churches in Beijing, John works to develop a relationship of trust with those who have graciously and courageously decided to share their stories. He is excited to partner with Salaam Garage to tell the stories of people trying to navigate the consequences of our imperfect foster care system.
Susan Anstine: Editor
I was born in the Bronx, moved to New Jersey as a teen. Educated at Rutgers, when it was a Women’s College called Douglass. Lived in Ghana as part of Canadian University Service Overseas—similar to Peace Corps. Worked as bilingual Probation Officer for teens (more like child care worker) and later in different capacities with street kids and drug abusers in Montreal. I graduated with a degree in Social Work 10 years later despite pledge to never to go back to New Jersey.
I’ve worked as family therapist for over 25 years and served in many volunteer activities from ambulance driver in the N.Y. suburbs to radio producer in Alaska (KSKA). In Seattle I volunteer for Planned Parenthood and have worked with the Arboretum, a Tutoring Center, and for a project in Kenya.
I’m interested in the SalaamGarage Local “Aging Out” project because this is an under-served population with few advocates and high needs. My contribution would be as an editor.
Della Chen, of Della Chen Photography Della is a documentary photographer whose interests are telling stories for weddings, families, editorial and commercial assignments. She was born, raised and is still living in Seattle but more importantly, loves to travel everywhere. Her laid-back style and photojournalism background is perfect for shooting family documentaries where she captures a day-in-a-life collection of photographs that convey the genuine personality of each family. Della is a committed mentor to several youth programs and hopes that her role as a photographer provides an impact to many untold stories.
Shannon Oslick: Photographer, Student
Shannon is a student studying Commercial Photography at Seattle Central Creative Academy. Her passions lie in Nature and Photojournalism. Shannon works with the Post Prison Education Program and the Foundation Fighting Blindness in Washington State and sees the Washington State Foster system as mis-interpreted and misunderstood. Aging out of foster care is a project she hopes can help to shed light on the problems people face upon turning 18 and being expelled from the system.
Paul Swortz: Photographer
Paul is a Seattle writer and photographer who delights in the use of vintage equipment as well as digital tools. He earns his living in technology, but he lives for travel, meeting people, and capturing those experiences on a variety of media. As a journalist, he worked for the Tacoma News Tribune, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, USA Today, and helped launch MSNBC.com, coordinating the first-ever online coverage of a U.S. Presidential Election (among other projects).
Katie Lambrecht: Photographer, Student
Katie Lambrecht grew up in rural Greeley, Colorado & moved to Seattle in 2010. She has a certificate in Publishing Arts & is currently a Commercial Photography student who plans to go into photojournalism upon graduating. She became a world traveler at a young age & plans to continue to explore new places & cultures. In her spare time she also enjoys assisting dog training at the Humane Society & spending valuable time with friends & family.
Kristie McLean: Photographer, Writer, Professional Coach
Kristie McLean is a Seattle-based documentary photographer, writer, and professional coach with a passion for empowering others through conversations and images. She has traveled extensively on six continents and is dedicated to raising awareness of global social issues and human rights.
Over the years Kristie has profiled Unexploded Ordnances in Laos, child brides in Afghanistan, access to clean water in rural Kenya, and obstetric fistula in Ethiopia. She’s looking forward to bringing that same attention and focus to the foster care cycle in the Pacific Northwest and in helping to create new possibilities within her own community.
Henk Dawson: Commercial Artist, Photographer, welcome committee
A day is incomplete for Henk if he doesn’t get to create something or spend quality time with a friend or family member. He has been an independent commercial illustrator for 20 years in Seattle and loves his work. Portrait photography is one of his passions and documenting peoples lives through photography has been a rewarding way for him to share with others.
Stephanie Hansen: SalaamGarage/Local: Seattle Producer, Photographer and Arts Devotee
In a roomy nut shell: Steph is always movin’ from point A to point.. let’s say Q. Her 9-5 is dedicated to life as a producer in design, branding, art and philanthropic projects. After hours are filled with more of the same plus a healthy dose of photography and learning to build community around the challenges we face in the world. For Steph the perfect day ends with friends and strangers alike around a dinner table rich with conversation. Cherry-on-top if she had the time to cook for the whole lot. Working with SaalamGarage infuses fuel into every avenue of her life.
Amanda Koster: SalaamGarage/Local: Seattle co-Producer,
Amanda Koster is the founder of SalaamGarage and an internationally acclaimed photographer whose commercial and personal work has shown a consistent commitment to telling stories of real people, human rights, cultural diversity and global equality. She combines her anthropology background with multi-media skills to create content as a means for powerful communication, storytelling and learning. As a former unofficial foster kid herself, this project really hits home. She’s looking forward to the stories from her own backyard.