The Evolved Nurturing Initiative

Darcia Narvaez, PhD

Cofounder of ENI ,Darcia Narvaez is a Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Notre Dame and the executive editor of the Journal of Moral Education.e. Dr. Narvaez’s current research explores how early life experience influences societal culture and moral character in children and adults. She integrates neurobiological, clinical, developmental and education sciences in her theories and research about moral development. She publishes extensively on moral development, parenting and education. Recently she has been studying the Evolved Developmental Niche (nest) and how it influences moral development, moral capacities and preferences. She hosts interdisciplinary conferences at the University of Notre Dame regarding early experience, flourishing and evolution. In 2016, she organized a conference on Sustainable Wisdom: Integrating Indigenous KnowHow for Global Flourishing. She is the author or editor of numerous books and articles. Her recent book, Neurobiology and the Development of Human Morality: Evolution, Culture and Wisdom (2014), won the 2015 William James Book Award from the American Psychological Association. Dr. Narvaez  is executive editor of the Journal of Moral Education.

Our Nonprofit Vision

EPI Alliance

Our society knows where it needs to go, our map has just been compromised. As early as 1997, Newsweek reported in a special section on early brain development that, "Early-childhood experiences exert a dramatic and precise impact, physically determining how the intricate neural circuits of the brain are wired." This revelation—that early shaping of neurobiology happens disproportionately through parenting in the early years—has left experts and parents clamoring for concrete practices to optimize that development. The cognitive stimulation idea to make babies smarter, utilizing bright and noisy “educational toys” and videos, turned out to be a multi-billion-dollar misstep to this end. However, the evolved baselines that unbiased scientific research has revealed for optimal parenting—or Evolved Parenting—offers the real answer. And parents feel in their bones that it’s right.

In founding ENI, we thought, what if this set of empirically supported parenting practices had a media relations arm like the commercial influences do? What if we saw press releases and news headlines that read, “Breastfeeding to six months would save the US $13 billion”? Or, “Longer maternity leave improves the longevity of women’s careers”?  (Both are true.) As it’s been said so many times in reaction to countering our ‘fast food culture’, “there’s no lobby for vegetables.” But what if, right along with the profit motives of baby formula manufacturers and misguided political activists, there was promotion for the type of parenting that best develops healthy human beings? That’s the idea behind The Evolved Parenting Initiative. Now there’s a media relations and research resource for truly evidence-based best practices.

Evolved Nurturing For An Evolved Society

Lisa Reagan

​EPI Adviser, Lisa Reagan is on a Mother (of a) Quest: for 17 years as an award-winning journalist, activist and nonprofit visionary, Lisa Reagan explores the space between our unsustainable industrial story and the emerging story of what is possible for Cultural Creative families – who are leading the way forward.

Lisa is a co-founder of the nonprofit, 
Families for Conscious Living and the executive editor of, Kindred. Lisa shares her personal stories of shifting in features, such as Spiritual Composting, in Kindred and other conscious parenting publications. In her presentations at conferences and workshops, she inspires parents to look toward Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey for guidance on transforming themselves as a path to transforming our unsustainable culture.  Her Parenting As A Hero’s Journey Virtual Retreats and publication will launch in 2015.

Lisa’s Kindred Fireside Chats and interviews with conscious living leaders, like Deepak Chopra, MD; Paul Ray, PhD; Marilyn Schlitz, PhD; Thom Hartmann; Joseph Chilton Pearce and others, continue to forge the new story of holistic family wellness at a time when the United States ranks last among all developed nations for infant, child and maternal wellness.  Watch Kindred’s New Story video series, produced by Lisa and her husband of 27 years, Keith, on Vimeo and You Tube Channels. Lisa is featured in the film documentary, The Love Bomb. Her forthcoming books share her 17 year adventure exploring the conscious living movement.

Her vision of serving Cultural Creative families is currently carried forward through nonprofit collaborations through Kindred’s Pioneering Partners Project, and over 300 international Pathways Connect Gathering Groups sponsored by Pathways to Family Wellness. (
Listen to the FCL story.)  In 2013, Pathways received three Hermes awards for the issue featuring Lisa’s interview with Jamie Grumet on her experience as Time magazine’s breastfeeding cover mom: The Cover Shot Heard ‘Round The World: An Interview With Conscious Parenting Revolutionary, Jamie Grumet.

Michael Mendizza

Michael is an author, educator, documentary filmmaker and founder of Touch the Future, a nonprofit learning design center. He is the author of two book, Magical Parent-Magical Child: The Art of Joyful Parenting, co-authored with Joseph Chilton Pearce that applies what athletes call The Zone, researchers call Flow and children call Play to parenting and to education. More recent is Flowering, a collection of dramatic floral and seascape images with quotes by Krishnamurti. Currently he is editing Amazing Capacities and Self-inflicted Limitations, a summary-anthology of Joseph Chilton Pearce’s collected insights and a forth book, on Buddhist Practices, Emptiness and Krishnamurti, with Rimpoche Samdhong, the first Prime Minister of Tibet in Exile.

Inspiration for Michael’s work emerged from personal relationships with
Joseph Chilton Pearce, physicist David Bohm, philosopher J. Krishnamurti, Ashley Montagu and over one hundred scientists, authors and educators all having clear and critical scientific insights into the journey we call being human. Michael writes and speaks internationally on varied subjects such as; The Next Frontier in Education, The Intelligence of Play, Transcendent Mentoring of This And Future Generations, Media and the Brain, Corporate Exploitation of Children, The Brave New World of Un-Schooling, The Childlike Mind, Rational Imagination, Raising Children in a Sport-Crazed Culture, and other topics. He maintains a blog, continues to add to Touch the Future’s expanding archive of personal interviews and writes for various periodicals on parent+child development. 

Angela Braden

Co-founder and Managing Director of ENI and creator of Science Mommy, and Smart Baby Sleep, Angela is a journalist and parent educator devoted to holistic, evidence-based parenting. Her writing contributes to understanding the often divergent forces of science and culture. 

"I believe readers deserve better than science reporting that simply regurgitates the researchers' conclusions or worse, puts a sensationalized spin on them. As a parent education consultant, I've seen up close an epidemic of pain and confusion around the biased, often harmful parenting advice that assaults new parents' information streams. I hope through the grass roots efforts to publicize science-based parenting information, ENI can push back against the cultural and political censorship and distortion of the science that abounds in parenting advise."

Kindred Media and Community

An alternative media and nonprofit educational project, "Sharing The New Story Of Childhood, Parenthood And The Human Family"


Families for Conscious Living

A 501C3 nonprofit "Believing In The Re-Generation Since 1996"


Touch The Future

TTF contains hundreds of video interviews, articles, publications, interviews and research papers on child and human development. Knowing where to look will help you apply this archive to your life and the lives of the children you love.


Parenting As A Hero's Journey

A nonprofit initiative created to help parents frame their conscious parenting experience in a positive and adventurous "story" based on Joseph Campbell's great monthly wheel and insights into "Answering The Call."


Parent Liberation Alliance

PLA is an evolving, cross-cultural program that provides parents with the science behind child brain development along with insights and tools for reflecting upon cultural norms as a conscious move toward building the emotionally intelligent families and compassionate communities needed for peaceful social change.


Book Fairy Pantry Project

 BFPP is a grassroots family literacy movement. This project will be implemented by the people, for the people. Volunteer book fairy helpers will collect new and gently used, quality children’s books from donation boxes and book drives and deliver them to participating food pantries and WIC offices to be given out to parents.