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Our Tea Sipper Team

Babette Donaldson

Founder & Head Sipper

Babette Donaldson, founder of the International Tea Sippers Society and author of The Everything Healthy Tea Book and The Emma Lea Books began her adventure with “real” tea as a graduate art student in San Francisco during the 70’s with a focus on ceramic art. Studying the history and elegance of ancient tea ware inspired curiosity for the beverage and worldwide cultures that celebrate it ceremonially. This inspired her most recent project, “Sip for Peace” for which she earned Best Consumer-Oriented Marketing Campaign at this year’s World Tea Expo.

Kelton McKinley

Member Services & Member Support

Kelton comes to ITSS with the precious gift of a beginner’s mind  with regard to tea. Having been able to count on his fingers the number of times he had tea before joining ITSS, he helps us keep attuned to newcomers to the world of tea and how we can welcome them to Tea Land. Kelton is also a musician and serves on the board of a local non-profit serving community youth and families. At ITSS, he focuses on the various aspects of Membership, including support for members uploading their event to the Calendar and for new Business Members creating dynamic profiles in the Directory. You can reach him at 

Jaelithe Crislip

TChing Managing Editor and ITSS Content Support

While she always enjoyed tea, Jaelithe’s love for tea actually started with two things: Studying herbalism and minoring in Japanese. Learning the various uses of herbs for healing purposes started her on the path of loose teas, and her exposure to Japanese culture and green tea came from learning the language. The two overlapped, and now she enjoys all things tea. She claims that she married her husband because he brings her a cup of tea first thing every morning, but there are probably other reasons as well.


Diane Murphy 

Graphics Artist and Designer

 I am a graphic designer with 25 plus years of experience, who designs a wide variety of internal and public outreach publications, including web imaging for the New York City Department of Transportation (NYC DOT). Some of my favorite design accomplishments are the Language Access logo and the graphics for Language Access SharePoint; as well as the NYC Air Quality Awareness Calendars (Asthma Awareness), in partnership with: NYC DOT, NYC DOE, HealthPlus Amerigroup, and the NY Mets. It excites me to find simple solutions for complex ideas in design. I love beauty in all its forms – art, design, film, literature, music and nature.

Lou Berkley

Consultant and Editor for Sip for Peace

Lou has worked with many specialty tea brands including International Tea Importers, Waterfall Teas among others. Lou contributed his tea research, writing, and project management skills to the 2017 edition of The Romance of Tea by William H. Ukers (annotated by James Norwood Pratt), and collaborated with Babette Donaldson on the “Sip for Peace” campaign for the International Tea Sippers Society.  One of Lou’s articles, Tea And Terroir Through Time, China And France is published in Tea Journey Magazine.