Program Administrator

Tamara Beachum of Artful Living After Loss

Tamara Beachum manages the program for our Creative Grief Support Practitioner Certification and other courses. Tamara will help you get registered for the course, assist with any of your questions along the way, and helps Cath and Kara with numerous logistics, project management, and organization support, ensuring that things always run smoothly at the Creative Grief Studio. She was our inaugural Certified Creative Grief Support Practitioner and is founder of Artful Living After Loss at Also a grief educator, you will get to know her as a member of our teaching team as well. Tamara is located in Atlanta, GA where she hosts a support group for widows/widowers and art-based classes on grief and creativity.


Course Founders, also part of the Teaching Team

The course was developed by Cath and Kara. They and the Teaching Team co-facilitate the class guiding you through the course and helping you to feel at home with the material and in the group.

Kara LC Jones of Grief+Creativity and KotaPress

Kara LC Jones will be your lead guide through the course material. Kara is one of the co-founders of the Creative Grief Studio, and also founder of Grief + Creativity and co-founder of Her grief support book Mrs. Duck and the Woman (download free eBook copy here) was published in both English and Spanish. Other books she has in print include Flash Of Life (download free eBook copy here), 1,000 Permissions Granted, and 1,000 Faces of Mother Henna. She’s a certified Appreciative Inquiry and Whole Systems Coach specializing in Joseph Campbell’s model of the Hero’s Journey. She is a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University holding double degrees in Literary and Cultural Theory plus Creative Writing (emphasis on Poetics) along with a minor in Early Childhood Education from Chatham College. She interned for three years with Fred Rogers, Hedda Sharapan, David Newell and the team at Family Communications, Inc., then producers of Mister Rogers Neighborhood.

Cath Duncan of Remembering For Good

cath_biopic2Cath is one of the co-founders of the Creative Grief Studio, along with Kara Jones. She has a Masters degree in Social Work, with a background in Child Protection, Trauma Debriefing and counselling for Depression. Her own life journeys with pregnancy loss, adoption, vision loss, kidney failure, and kidney transplant have also given her much instruction and a real-life practice ground for learning to live well with grief.

Cath helps people to live wholeheartedly after loss at She is the author of the Grief Workbook, Remembering For Good, and co-curates, a website educating bereaved families and the people who support them about the option to bring stillborn and deceased babies home. Cath lives in South Africa.


Teaching Team Members Also Include…

Our Teaching Team members are all Certified Creative Grief Support Practitioners. They help us with facilitating and leading the live calls, and we all work together to moderate discussions in the online classroom between the live calls.

Tamara Beachum

tamaraTamara Beachum was our inaugural Certified Creative Grief Support Practitioner and is founder of Artful Living After Loss at She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology and has been certified as a Six Sigma Black Belt and a Professional of Human Resources. After a lengthy career in Human Resources Management, Tamara now uses her extensive skills in coaching, facilitation and speaking and applies them to help people use their creativity and natural resilience to live forward after loss. She hosts in-person compassionate communities in person and on line for widows and others who are grieving. You can find out more about Tamara’s grief support work at

Rev. Gail M. Syring

gailGail M. Syring received her master’s degree in ministry from Hartford Seminary, and specializes in the ministry of everyday life. As a Creative Grief Coach and Spiritual Director, Gail is dedicated to being a companion on the spiritual journeys of those seeking to reclaim their own strength and resourcefulness. Additionally, Gail is a Reiki Master Teacher in the Usui tradition, a trainer of compassionate communication, and a sexual assault crisis advocate.

Gail’s areas of specialty include: pastoral care and spiritual direction; sexuality education and women’s health; LGBT support, advocacy, and education; mediation and conflict resolution; sexual assault/rape crisis intervention and prevention; leadership training/workshops; and diversity training/workshops. In addition, she is an instructor and student affairs professional at the University of Hartford.

Yvonne Lucia

yvonneYvonne M. Lucia, R.N., M. Div., is a multi-media artist whose practice interweaves her expertise is the realms of healing, spirituality and expressive arts as she companions others who journey with grief. She is passionate about the transformational potential of every person’s inborn creativity across the spectrum of living, loving, experiencing loss, and leaning forward. In 2016, she completed her certification as a Veriditas Labyrinth Facilitator. You can learn more about her work at and

Lori Boyer

loriLori’s career in grief began over 17 years ago when she began leading support groups with Hospice. Helping people grieve the loss of something or someone treasured immediately became her passion. Five years later, she and her partner had their first miscarriage and her journey with grief got bigger. Multiple losses later, Lori is committed to walking with clients amid the darkness and discovering the impossible light on the other side.

As a Board Certified Music Therapist, and now a Certified Creative Grief Support Practitioner, you’ll find that Lori has personal and professional experience in helping people open up opportunities for making new meaning in their lives. She fully believes that we need a trusted partner or coach to help us define who we are becoming in light of our loss.

When she is not reflecting on life’s big questions, you can find Lori barefoot in her kitchen, cultivating yogurt, growing basil, making pancakes or melting wax for candles. Click here to email Lori or find her at Ginny’s Circle on FB.


Our Guest Faculty

Our guest faculty are all leaders in their fields, and we’re thrilled to have their pioneering work as part of our curriculum, as well as their voices contributing to the teaching through live or recorded lectures.

Dr. Harriet Lerner, New York Times Best-Selling Author And Authority On The Psychology Of Women And Family.

Dr. Lerner is one of the world’s most respected voices in the psychology of women and family relationships. She is the author of 10 books published in 35 languages including The Dance of Anger, a New York Times bestseller that has helped rescue men and women from the swamps and quicksands of difficult relationships.

Lerner’s books have been published in more than thirty foreign editions with book sales of over three million. Her “Dance” books include The Dance of AngerThe Dance of IntimacyThe Dance of DeceptionThe Mother DanceThe Dance of Connection, and The Dance of Fear. Lerner is also the author of Life Preservers: Good Advice When You Need It Most, and Women in Therapy, a feminist revision of psychoanalytic theory and practice. Harriet’s latest book, Marriage Rules, was released in 2012.

We’re very pleased that Dr. Learner has contributed a recorded lecture on the topic of dealing with difficult but important relationships during grieving.

Ade Adeniji, Coach, Organisational Consultant, Spiritual Counsellor, Interfaith Minister, and Group and Certified Daring Way™ Facilitator.

Daring Way™ is a highly experiential methodology based on the shame resilience research of Dr. Brené Brown. Ade is Co-founder of The Quest for Gay Men, a UK-based social enterprise that delivers personal development programs aimed at transforming the relationships that gay men have with themselves, with others and with the world they inhabit. You can learn more about Ade and his team’s work at: and

We’re very excited to have Ade contributing a recorded lecture on understand how social justice issues might influence the grief experience, shame resilience, and meaning-making after loss for marginalised groups.

Dr. Kimberly Manning, MD, & author of Reflections of a Grady Doctor blog.

Dr. Manning is an academic internist trained and board certified in both Internal Medicine and Pediatrics. She is on the Emory University School of Medicine faculty, practicing at one of the largest public hospitals in the United States, Grady Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia. Through her work she has come to understand that patients at indigent care hospitals are often misunderstood. She meets them where they are understanding that they are more than homelessness, substance abuse, and public assistance; they are human beings with hopes, dreams and lives uniquely their own. On her blog, Reflections of a Grady Doctor, she shares insights from her work in the hospital, life and love by telling the stories of the lessons she is learning every day. She talks about the human aspects of medicine, teaching and work/life balance and honors the public hospital and her patients but never at the expense of patient privacy or dignity.

We’re thrilled to have Dr. Manning contributing a recorded lecture on the topics of social justice, reflection and practices to sustain you in finding and maintaining purposeful work.

Dr. Lorraine Hedtke MSW, LCSW, Ph.D. & Author of The Crafting of Grief

Lorraine teaches about death, dying and bereavement throughout the US and internationally. Her unique ideas and practices are drawn from narrative therapy and represents a departure from the conventional models of grief psychology. Her articles have appeared in numerous professional journals and magazines. She, along with John Winslade, is the co-author of “Remembering Lives: Conversations with the Dying and the Bereaved,” and The Crafting of Grief: Constructing Aesthetic Responses to Loss. She has also authored “Bereavement support groups: breathing life into stories of the dead” and Breathing Life Into the Stories of the Dead: Constructing Bereavement Support Groups (2012) which is available from Taos Publishing. Her children’s book, My Grandmother is Always with Me (2005), is written with her daughter, Addie. Her new text,  You can find more of Lorraine’s articles and events at

We’re thrilled to have Dr. Hedtke teaching live for us for one module sharing her ground-breaking re-membering conversations work, and offering a follow up recorded lecture going more deeply into using re-membering conversations where relationships are challenging.

Dr. Darcy Harris, Author of Promoting Social Justice in Loss and Grief

IMG_3153 (3)Darcy Harris, Ph.D., FT is an Associate Professor and the Thanatology Coordinator at King’s College at Western University in London, Canada. She also maintains a clinical practice with a specialization in issues related to change, loss, and transition. Dr. Harris has published many articles, book chapters, and books including, Counting Our Losses: Reflecting on Change, Loss, and Transition in Everyday Life (Routledge), Grief and Bereavement in Contemporary Society: Bridging Research and Practice (Routledge), and Grief Counseling: Principles and Practice (Springer). Her most recent book, Handbook of Social Justice in Loss and Grief: Exploring Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (Baywood), was released in February 2016. She is currently the Series Editor for the Death, Value, and Meaning Series with Baywood Publishing Company in New York.

Dr. Harris’s work on “a social justice approach to grieving” is a wonderful compliment to exploring cultural and societal “grief rules” that may obstruct grieving or feel oppressive to grieving people.

Heather Plett, Author, Speaker, & Teacher, specializing in creativity, leadership, storytelling, & community building.

Heather has recently completed a memoir about the significant role her stillborn son played in her life. Many of the workshops she teaches centre around the theme of “turning our pain stories into gifts”. She teaches about the creative spiritual practices that have helped her work through grief, including mandalas, contemplative photography, and body art journaling.

Heather spent 15 years as a professional communicator and organizational storyteller in government and non-profit. She has also spent many years working as a freelance writer, artist, and photographer. She currently teaches in a variety of venues, including the University of Winnipeg’s Professional Development program. In addition to her blog, she can be found at

Heather is a fountain of creative ideas, so we’re very pleased to have her contributing her body journaling work and a wonderful recorded lecture on the topic of using creativity to transform grief.

Vanessa Gorman, Filmmaker & Author of Losing Layla

Vanessa Gorman is the filmmaker and writer behind the 2001 documentary Losing Layla – an intensely personal video diary about the death of her baby daughter and the journey of grief in the months following. It won the ATOM Award for best documentary 2001 and an Australian Film Institute (AFI) nomination.  It has now been shown on networks around the world. Vanessa’s first book LAYLA’S STORY, a companion to the documentary and a memoir of sex, love, loss and longing, was published by Penguin in 2005. You can get copies of the book and documentary at

Vanessa also writes and lectures on TV journalism and film making. As well as newspaper and journal articles, her publications include chapters in ‘Always a Part of Me’ and ‘Australian Story – Behind the Scenes’ both for ABC Books.

Vanessa’s insightful sharing of her own journeys with grief and shame during and after her daughter, Layla’s death and birth is a moving and thought-provoking compliment to our discussions on the impact of shame in grieving.