Who We are - Meet our Team


Which we lovingly call Verse



In 2018, the School of Traditional Healing Arts was born in the basement of The Scarlet Sage Herb Co. out of a desire to bring herbal medicine education into an urban setting. During this time, we have been able to serve our community through Scarlet Sage in the most successful way possible.

In March 2020, as we sheltered-in-place, we moved our certifications online and thankfully we were able to continue to provide empowering wellness education to our community. We now have students from around the world joining our online learning community and we are excited to welcome more.

Our next phase is supporting Women in their adult years with all of the wellness support (regenerative products + trusted voices) they need to raise a family, manage their own self-care, build a career, and take care of their loved ones. Stay tuned!

The name Verse comes from the history of all of our people. Information and knowledge were passed down through oral tradition, through song and stories, until recently. Many communities around the world still do not have a written language!

Each of us carry these stories from our lineage with us - and we encourage those stories and songs to be remembered. All of your ancestors had access to healing knowledge - it's in your DNA. The foundation of your education and journey with Verse is in your lineage, your ancestry, and your people. We are honored to hold you in the story of your family's healing and resilience. 


Laura Ash, Verse CEO

Laura Ash

Verse Founder & CEO
Laura (she/her) is a clinical herbalist, a proud member of the LGBTQ+ community, a mother of two, a teacher, a dancer, a storyteller, and a social entrepreneur.

Laura has been enchanted by herbalism since 1999, and has dedicated her career to it. Her education was formalized at The California School of Herbal Studies in Clinical Herbal Medicine, and the Ayurvedic Institute.

Building up to starting Verse, her entrepreneurial journey started with a medicinal chai tea company while she was in school, Avra Organic Spa, Herbal Anthropology Project, 501(c)3 which preserves and protects traditional medicine around the globe with IP protection for Indigenous communities, and The Scarlet Sage Herb Co., a legacy herbal apothecary in SF. 

Laura's dream is to bring herbal medicine and holistic arts education to the world so that people know how cool natural medicine really is. Her current passions are in supporting feminist business principles and encouraging sound financial education for healers.

  • Rising sign: Scorpio
  • Fav Herb: Lavender
  • Family Ancestry: English, Swedish, French, German American.
  • Fav animal: Bear
Laura's Linkedin

Kursten Hedgis

Director of Education Operations at Verse

Kursten (she/her) is a folk herbalist, comms maven, and meditation junkie. She earned her BA(s) in Critical Theory and Computer Information Systems from Georgia State University while working at an Acupuncture Clinic and as a Remote Tech Advisor for Apple.

Since then, she's leaned into her unique ability to bridge the worlds of business and metaphysics by working with companies like Scarlet Sage Herb Co, Modern Mystic Shop, Adult Swim, and Mailchimp to support everyday lives (and corporations!) with healing tools & services.

After traversing the metaphysical realms, she began studying herbalism under Patricia Howell in the Appalachian Mountains and is a graduate of the Verse Apprentice Herbalist Program.

Her work with Verse is a part of her mission to merge modern technology's innovation with the ancient wisdom of healing arts. You can find her writing, medicine making, or basking in the East Bay sunshine under the oak trees of Lake Merritt with 17-year-old dog, B.

  • Rising sign: Leo
  • Fav Herb: Ocimum sanctum, Holy Basil
  • Family Ancestry: 2nd generation Greek American, specifically from Aegean Islands
  • Fav animal: Whales!
Kursten's Linkedin
Kursten Hedgis, Operations Manager and Director of Metaphysical Arts at Verse
Kelsey Barrett, Director of Herbal Education at Verse

Kelsey Barrett

Clinical Advisor for the School of Herbal Medicine at Verse
Kelsey (she/her) is a California based clinical herbalist.
Her mission is to foster intimacy with self, health and the natural world. Her herbal and environmental insights have been published in Vogue, Edible East Bay, GOOD Magazine and Gestalten, and she is currently Director of Herbal Education at Verse.

  • Rising sign: Leo
  • Fav Herb: Linden
  • Family Ancestry: Irish, Scottish, French 
  • Fav animal: Sea Turtle
Kelsey's Linkedin

Marie Lamy

Tech Lead at Verse
Marie (she/her) is a French tech maven and marketing passionate. Over the last fifteen years, Marie has been working with International companies like L'Oréal, Lancôme, AFP and Galileo Global Education to manage their online presence, content and e-commerce strategy. Passionate with traditional wellness and herbal medicine, Marie joined the Scarlet Sage Herb in 2018 as Digital Marketing Manager.
She now uses tech to turn the Verse team's educational vision into a real-life online reality. Mother of two, Marie is based in France and is deeply integrated in the French Tech Ecosystem.

  • Rising sign: Aries
  • Fav Herb: Pineapple Sage
  • Traditional Ancestry: French
  • Fav animal: Fish
Marie's Linkedin
Marie Lamy, Tech Lead at Verse

Our Mission

To grant access to information and resources to keep ourselves healthy, vibrant and participating in our own wellness.

Verse guides customers to reclaim their agency and knowledge that has been lost or outsourced. We remind people that we used to know how to heal ourselves and our families — and we show them how to reclaim that power.

Our Vision

Verse connects women with traditional healing arts that empower everyday lives with purpose, physical well-being, and spiritual connection.

Verse infuses online learning with embodied experiences to create connection and wholeness, a missing component in most eLearning platforms.

Verse brings online healing arts education + trusted wellness products into your home and expands your global community of like-minded folks.

Our Values

  • We celebrate diversity.
  • The earth is a stakeholder.
  • Our students are empowered through Interdependence.
  • We all have ancestral remedies & traditions - we support our students to find them.
  • We are connected to one another through our passions and curiosity.
  • We uplift Indigenous teachers from around the world.