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Restoring Eden staff members: Peter Illyn Alexis Illyn Gretchen Peck

newpeter.jpgPeter Illyn

Founder and Executive Director - Vancouver, WA

Raised in South Carolina as a Russian Orthodox, Peter graduated from Rhema Bible College where he earned credentials as an evangelical minister. He spent nine years serving as a pastor in Foursquare churches in Portland, OR and Yakima, WA. Peter returned to school for an undergraduate degree in marketing. Upon graduation, as a sabbatical, Peter took two llamas on a four-month, 1,000 mile trek through the Cascades, which set the long-distance record for llama packing.

According to Peter, “I went into the mountains an evangelical minister, but I came out an environmental activist. I believe God made a good earth and I am called to be a good steward; to protect the fruitfulness and connectedness of creation.” Peter returned to school for a Masters degree in social marketing, combining his three passions – nature appreciation, social marketing and Christian theology and began to create an alternative framework for Christians to engage nature, compared to the “dominion” theology perpetrated by the far right.

Though an evangelical, Peter also works with Catholics, Orthodox, mainline Protestants, and Jewish leaders.  Peter’s success in reaching the church community with a message of environmental stewardship has been featured on Lehrer Newshour, CBS Evening News, CNN, Outside Magazine, Utne Reader, Charisma, and Christianity Today amongst others. In addition, he has also been interviewed for numerous local newspapers, Christian newspapers, and radio talk shows.


Nick Campbell

Program & Engagement Coordinator

Minneapolis, MN

Nick earned a degree in Journalism and Strategic Communication from the University of Minnesota in the Twin Cities. As a Christian, he grew up enjoying the beautiful outdoors of Minnesota and always felt closest to God while in nature.

He sees environmental stewardship and creation care as just a normal part of the Christian faith. “Caring for the gifts God has given us is a basic Biblical principle,” says Nick. “And creation is an awesome, awesome gift.”

In addition to helping Christians rediscover the Biblical call to love, serve, and protect God’s creation, Nick enjoys hiking the Superior Hiking Trail, biking the streets of Minneapolis, cooking with ingredients from his garden, and finding ways to build authentic community. He lives in North Minneapolis with his wife, Abbey, who worked for Restoring Eden from 2009 – 2011.

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