Julie began teaching in SRJC's Older Adults Program in 1996. Initially, her classes were taught in skilled nursing and assisted living facilities, and involved music (piano, percussion, guitar) and gentle movement and stretching. As the program expanded to include more active adults, her classes grew more varied, and over the course of 26 years, have included:
- Involved Elder
- Musical Experience
- Aquatic Exercise
- Exercise for Balance and Good Health/Ejercicio Para Mantener el Equilibrio y La Buena Salud
She received her BA degree from Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT in 1988. Her studies in world music, dance, and psychology, provided a good foundation for the next chapter of her life in central Mexico, where she played the piano in a Latin jazz band and taught ESL in Morelia, Michoacan.
After moving to Santa Rosa, she began working at the Creative Living Center, a mental health clinic provided by the Sonoma County Department of Health Services. For five years, she taught dance and yoga classes, translated between Spanish speaking clients and English speaking staff, and led drum circles for adults living with schizophrenia and other psychiatric diagnoses.
Julie encourages people to listen to their own bodies while working to attain well-being through movement and creative expression. In her personal journey, she found relief from pain and illness through movement. Subsequently, she completed multiple training programs in land and water-based exercise instruction through the Arthritis Foundation. Later, she became a certified Parkinson Wise Exercise Leader through the Parkinson's Association. She has been certified to teach water exercise through the Aquatic Exercise Association since 1996. Julie incorporates decades of tai chi, qi gong, Pilates, and yoga practice into all of her classes.
With a passion for community building, social justice, and environmental stewardship, Julie started Growing a Village/Cultivando un Pueblo (growingavillage.org), a neighborhood-based organization that brings people together across cultural, generational, and economic divides. Growing a Village has received multiple community service awards from the city of Santa Rosa and has been featured on KBBF FM bilingual radio and the Bohemian newspaper.