Rustand, Donna

 BIOGRAPHY FOR

 Donna Rustand

                  Donna Rustand has been a certified harp practioner at St Charles Medical Center in Bend, Oregon since her graduation from the International Harp Therapy Program in 1999. She also provides  therapeutic harp music for patients in Hospice House, and has provided harp music for the cancer infusion room at the Bend Memorial Clinic.

Donna, a Bend, Oregon  native, holds a Bachelor degree in Music from the University of Oregon, and a Master of MusEd. Degree from Western Oregon University.

Her 50 plus career in the music education field has taken her, in addition to the United States, to Europe where she was a Music Coordinator for the Department of Defense Schools in Southern Germany.

From 1965-1971, Donna was a Music Consultant for Prentice-Hall Publishiing  Company. During that time, she was also a contributing author of the Growing With Music Series, Grades K-8, related Arts Edition.

Donna married Anton Rustand in Norway in 1967, and they have one son, Erik and  two granddaughters, Holly and Grace, who also live in Bend.

In the early 1970’s, Donna started experiencing symptoms of multiple sclerosis, but she continued to teach for another 20 years.  She had to take a disability retirement from teaching in 1995 and as a consequence, she found a new direction in life.  She says, “When someone is faced with a chronic illness, the best prescription is to go out and help someone else.” Donna believes that the MS is a “blessing in disguise” because she has gained enormous satisfaction from her role as a harp practitioner. “It’s the most rewarding thing I’ve done in my life.  I have a meaningful purpose and this work takes the focus off my own problems.”

Donna and Anton are owners of Holly Hill Farm in Mulino, Oregon which they bought in 1973.  Their holly adventure keeps them very busy, especially during the Christmas season. You may like to check out their website: hollyhillfarm-or.com if interested in their life beyond the music world.