My college years were spent at Oberlin College where I met Paul Scharff. In 1953 we were married following which time I finished college and taught kindergarten and primary school classes for several years, while Paul finished medical school and his internship. Two years with the Public Health Service followed.
During this time we considered places where we would like to move to establish our work and lives together. Certain individuals, as well as the intentions of the work at the Threefold Farm, took us to what is now Chestnut Ridge, NY in 1959. Here residency training continued and seven years later, after many preliminary steps, we worked together with others to dedicate a new work – the beginning of the Fellowship Community. As the endeavor had needed variances and approval by the Town of Ramapo, it was finally headlined in the Journal News as having received support to evolve “An Experiment in Long Term Care”. Over the years our four children Christopher, Michael, Katherine and John joined us and joined into the unfolding of this unique community endeavor. Further aspects of these many years can be found in the biography of Dr. Scharff.
As a young boy, Michael became very interested in the construction of the many buildings that were being constructed at that time, both at the Fellowship Community and Green Meadow Waldorf School. One of the Scharffs neighbors was Michael’s godfather, Walter Leicht, who became a very influential figure in Michael’s life. Walter was an architect, and a leader in the development of Anthroposophical architecture in America. Mr. Leicht designed the majority of the Anthroposophical buildings at the Fellowship Community and Green Meadow Waldorf School.
At the age of twelve, Michael began his life’s journey in architecture, as an apprentice in Mr. Leicht’s office, where he spent many years, learning from and working with Mr. Leicht. Michael had the great fortune to assist Mr. Leicht in designing several Anthroposophical buildings.
Michael is a graduate of Green Meadow Waldorf School, and New Jersey Institute of Technology, where he received his bachelor’s degree in architecture. Michael has focused his architectural work on projects for Anthroposophical initiatives. Michael continues to live in Chestnut Ridge, along with his children Gabriel and Miya, who attend Green Meadow Waldorf School.