Executive Director, Founder
Mary worked initially in music and elementary education after graduating from Hope College in 1974. Her passion for teaching and working with animals continues to grow because of the profound effect the whole farm experience has on children and youth.
Wally volunteers alongside his wife at the farm. As one who multi-tasks around the farm, Wally says he has the best of all jobs. Whether doing small repairs, milking goats or taking guests around, he enjoys it all.
Makayla is a graduate of Grand Valley State University with a degree in Public and Nonprofit Administration. Her position at Critter Barn combines her passions for animal care, youth education, and nonprofit work. In her spare time, she enjoys the beach and time with her two kittens.
Marty moved to West Michigan from Seattle, Washington to be closer to his triplet nephews. He has worked construction for over 15 years, and he's excited to apply his skills to Critter Barn. When not at work, Marty enjoys rock climbing, traveling and Latvian folk dancing.
Breanna recently graduated from Unity Chrisitan High School. Working at Critter Barn is a great fit for her because she loves animals, kids, and being outside! Outside of work, she enjoys spending time with her dog and chickens, gardening, going on hikes, and being with her friends and family!
Barnyard Crew Coordinator
Lisa is the coordinator for our Barnyard Crew! When she was young, her family has a small hobby farm with sheep and horses which has driven her love of animals. Her background is in nursing, and she has worked in healthcare for the last 13 years but joined Critter Barn to pursue her passion. When not at work Lisa enjoys the beach, hiking, and arts & crafts.
Alisa works at the Critter Barn in fundraising, grant writing and educational programming. She has trained in Europe in traditional milling and became the first Dutch-certified miller in the Americas. When not working and being a mom, you might find her up north, sailing, baking or cutting & stacking firewood for her antique wood-burning cookstove.
Shakira is from Central Iowa and graduated from Iowa State (GO Cyclones!) with a degree in Animal Ecology. She has a background working at the Zoo working with various animals. When she’s not at the Farm, she enjoys being outdoors, exploring local restaurants and being creative.
Xander is a High School student at iCademy here in Zeeland. He has volunteered at the farm over 4 years before becoming staff! In his spare time, he enjoys raising rabbits and competing in equestrian events with his horse Ada.
Mallory is a student at Central Michigan University pursuing a degree in recreation and event management. She loves spending time with animals any chance she gets and has a passion for working with children and teaching them new skills. In her free time she enjoys spending time outdoors and being with her family!
In the past, Kelsey has worked at a Horse Ranch and did Landscaping. Her favorite part of working at Critter Barn is getting to spend time with and take care of Petunia, the potbelly pig. When not at work, Kelsey enjoys spending time with her dogs and boyfriend.
Taylor is a sophomore at Jenison high school. She loves working with animals and kids, and she is looking to pursue a career that involves caring for animals. In her free time she enjoys spending time with her own five pets, and playing her flute!
Bio coming soon!
Katie is a Junior at MSU, studying zoology. She has a passion for working with animals and children alike, and enjoys every second spent outdoors. In her free time, she spends time horseback riding and hanging out with her many pets.
Morgan is a student at Grand Valley State University pursuing a degree in special education. She has a passion for animals and working with kids. In her spare time she enjoys playing waterpolo for GVSU and hanging out with some of her own farm animals, including her goat Ruby-Sue and her sheep Daffodil.
Welcome Desk Greeter
When you arrive to Critter Barn, you will be greeted by Lynn! Lynn is a graduate of Mich State Univ with a degree in advertising. She visited the Critter Barn often for 20 years before joining our staff.
Bio Coming Soon!
Deb recently retired from being a 7th & 8th grade science teacher. Working at the Critter Barn is a great opportunity for Deb to combine her love of animals and her passion for teaching. If you don't see her in the barn you'll find her planning class curriculum or working in our gardens.