2017 Featured Speakers

Marianna deCroes


I was a teacher for 15 years. I taught in a Waldorf (Steiner) School in
Northern California. Storytelling is a key element to this particular form of education with recommended story genres being used at specific ages and stages of child development. I told or worked with a story almost every day with the students I taught as part of the curriculum through the grades. In that context I witnessed the power of story to nurture and transform the lives of children and adolescents.
After I retired, I attended the International School of Storytelling in England, and subsequently taught courses there as well as Spain, Portugal and India.

Lucinda deLorimier


Through the art of storytelling and various careers in education and librarianship, Lucinda is a strong proponent of active narrative as a force for positive change. She’s been using the heart connection of storytelling since 1986.
As a performer, her wit, warmth and skill in enrapturing her audiences gives listeners permission to create and pass along stories for the enrichment of all. As a teacher of storytelling and workshop leader, her experience and high encouragement quotient work to enlighten the world with even more storytellers.

Thoughts on storytelling
We connect and create and imagine when we participate in storytelling. A storyteller isn’t the center of the event at a telling: The teller needs to be a clear vessel containing the tale, and needs to be able to relate that story to the listeners, bringing its images to them and then recognizing and incorporating their reactions into the tale—but what is most important is how the story itself takes over the event so that everyone present becomes part of the telling. It’s magic, and in this world, isn’t it just a pleasure to be part of such magic?

Storytelling style
I tell mostly traditional tales, with family stories often woven into the story. I like the unusual stories, especially stories with a twist.

Gloria Jones


I am a retired teacher who enjoys art and theater. I was born in WVA but raised largely in Virginia and Ohio where both of my parents were teachers.
I met and married the man of my dreams at the age of 23 and we celebrated our 40th anniversary in December. I have three lovely children and two wonderful grandchildren.

Why I Love Telling Stories:

I love telling stories that make people smile and reflect on the sweet, amusing side of life. Stores can teach, preach, comfort and encourage. I welcome the opportunity to share here on Auburn.

Ed Lewis

ed-lewisEd is a retired Early Childhood Professor who developed Storytelling classes and workshops for elementary and preschool teachers as well as college instructors. He has performed for adult audiences at many storytelling venues since 1994. He has also performed for children at schools across the United States, Mexico, Brazil, Spain, Korea, and England. He focuses on storytelling, puppetry, singing, dancing, and using rhythm instruments.



Mark Berry

mark-berryMark Berry is one of the few people that has permission to retell Native American stories. He is the chairman of the 2016 and 2017 Auburn Winter Storytelling Festivals and will be on hand to tell a story at the drop of a hat.






Tom Wade

fsg-tom-wadeAn energetic teller of mostly-true tales, Tom Wade’s stories engage and delight people of all ages. He has appeared several times as a Guest Teller at the Sierra Storytelling Festival and is also a three-time winner of the Sierra Storytelling Festival Story Slam. If you catch him offstage, beware! With no time limitations, you just might find yourself spellbound for hours.

So what is his advice for the Open Telling?

“The trick is to get it in the timeframe,” Wade said. “Don’t think it in your head. Say it. If it’s less than five minutes, that’s even better. Things always happen on stage – laughter, pauses – a three-and-a-half-minute presentation can easily be a five-minute presentation. And learn to talk really fast.”

As well as a storyteller, Tom is a farmer and homestead dairyman with a passion for cooperating with Nature, even when it arrives as a bobcat in the chicken coop. Growing up on a small farm in Michigan as the oldest son in a family of ten children. he honed his storytelling skills at the family dinner table.

Asked if telling ever makes him nervous, Tom said, “I am excited. I feel more at home in front of people, the bigger the group, the more comfortable I am.”

Tom has travelled in some of the wilder parts of Africa and Central America, as well as the US, and has the stories to prove it. He now makes his home in Nevada County, California with his wife, 3 dogs, 2 donkeys, and a herd of goats.