Who We Are
BENJAMIN ROCHE: artist, designer, counselor, storyteller, mentor, founder
The founder of Thirdofeight and its associated Institute, Benji as he has come to be known is an entrepreneur with a history of overcoming intense personal difficulties and a strong penchant for storytelling. Raised in the panhandle of Idaho, he came to love the running rivers and wild and woolly woods of his childhood.
However, as a child, creative expression was never especially emphasized, but it was a constant personal theme in his everyday life. After years of conscious self-denial, he finally learned to recognize and then temper his own gifts amidst immense personal challenges. It was then that his abilities and increased understanding converged. Not only did creativity become a preeminent priority, but inner peace slowly began flowing in his life.
He now devotes all of his time both to expressing his personal creative inclinations while helping others to learn to recognize their infinite value as children of God and the truths that can lead them to satisfy their purpose as healed and gifted creators.
BARRY SINES: mentor, facilitator, researcher, filmmaker
Barry's unique life experiences have gifted him with an uncanny empathy and desire to love and inspire others. His preoccupation with temporal preparedness gives him incredible skills to assist those who wish to better take care of themselves and those they love.
Barry is resourceful and has learned through a higher power to listen to his best self.
Barry also is a professional video editor, writer, and producer. He runs a popular DIY youtube channel dedicated specifically to helping people learn to get by off-grid. He lives and operates a branch of the Institute in Iowa.
MELISSA ERICKSON: educational consultant, homeschooler, mother of three
Melissa has a knack for recognizing and following her intuition. Her years of experience with teaching both in the public schools and within the walls of her home have provided ample opportunity to gather adequate experience to qualify her as a consultant for the institute. Her relationship with the institute spans almost as long as it has been in development these eighteen years.
JENNIFER ANDRESKI: educational consultant, mentor
Jennifer is a passionate advocate of the neglected and the underserved. Her insights and persistence have earned her the devotion and respect of her colleagues and friends. She inspires through both example and as a teacher. Her interest in cultivating a place where those in need might get access to the things they need has made her an integral part of the institute and its mission.