Lora Hein, was born in Oregon and raised by California natives in the small towns and hills of Marin County. At 23-years old she earned an AA degree in Physical Sciences, a 180 degree departure from the Arts she had envisioned. That summer she became the first woman hired as a backpacking Park Ranger Naturalist in Yosemite National Park. After summer was over she took off on a six month backpacking adventure to South America, starting with two months in the Galápagos Islands.
That trip turned life as she knew it upside down, and forever changed her. Lora had not known how lost she was until she spent a night believing she was going to die and never return home again. She thought she knew who she was when she set out on her six month voyage. However she discovered how much more there was to learn about the world, nature and herself. That was the beginning of tumultuous changes. Lora opened to the social as well as natural world. In doing so, she discovered true belonging, where she and everyone fits in this world.
Transplanted to Washington
A few years after returning from that trip, Lora transplanted herself to Washington State in 1977. She took on new adventures and discoveries, built a passive solar home, and helped steer the first grassroots campaign to successfully halt construction of a nuclear power plant before groundbreaking.
Lora worked seasonally for the North Cascades National Park. In the “off season” she pieced together dozens of other jobs for ten years. She worked as an AirPollution Control Technician and inspector, cloned rhododendrons, designed passive solar homes, labored at organic farms and researched the feasibility of heating the local high school with wood industry waste. She then became an elementary teacher. A strike and divorce turned her life upside down again a decade later.
After fifteen years working as a union organizer, team builder and advocate for stress management, Lora retired from regular employment. She now lives with her spouse in the seaside town of Edmonds. They designed their yard to welcome wildlife and grow food to sustain a healthy lifestyle.
Learning and Thriving
Lora has learned to roll like the ocean waves and the cascading mountain streams that have educated her in the ways of constant change. She has grieved many heartbreaks and lost dreams. After each loss and rejection she began again. She has learned to reach beyond survival to
Now an author, gardener, painter and dance instructor, Lora still learns and grows through sharing her discoveries with a widening circle of friends and fellow ripple makers. She published her first piece about a brush with death in the Galápagos, “Left Behind,” in the recently released “True Stories“. Her current memoir in progress is Tortoise Moon. This account of her journey of discovery over four decades ago followed the path of Darwin and his discoveries to a land forever lost in time.