Founder & Convener of Next Step Adventure

LucyKate with June at the Art Center

Grandkids are the best!

For Martha McCormick, every step is an adventure. An exhilarating ride through food service, education and corrections led to her niche in youth development, starting in ISU Extension in the 1970s, where she took the 4-H philosophy of hands-on education to kids who were often excluded from traditional 4-H programs. That work involved grant writing and project management, staff supervision and inspiration for more than 30 years.

Martha McCormick and her cat in a hat

Cat in a hat serves as creative muse

Throughout her career, Martha has used experiential education, teambuilding, storytelling and mind mapping to reflect on the past, gain insight and define the future. As a certified yoga instructor, she enthusiastically embraces the inclusion of in yoga and acroyoga in the experiential education movement.

Martha McCormick and Kate in India

Martha and her daughter Kate on their pilgrimage to India

In 2006, she founded Next Step Adventure to extend her values of creativity, partnership, and fun to organizations in need of her leadership style. Martha especially enjoys coaching groups and individuals to become happier, more productive people. She helps people and organizations envision and achieve greater futures by tapping into their experience, strength and hope.

Martha is an Iowa transplant from California, but she’s flourished in Iowa since 1968 when she rode the train from LA to school at Cornell College in Mt. Vernon. After graduating from the University of Iowa in 1972, she moved across the state to Tama then Ames, earning a Masters in Education from Iowa State University in 1980.

These days Martha is exploring the world through painting, gardening and yoga. Perhaps the greatest adventure is the addition of a granddaughter. June Rose spends at least a day a week with Martha while her mama tends a classroom of middle schoolers. Having family in town is a delightful new adventure in itself!

Read blog posts by Martha ›

Martha McCormick at Central Iowa Yoga Retreat

Flying high at Central Iowa Yoga Retreat