We are so excited to announce our leadership team for summer 2022! On June 3, our directors, regional directors, and trip leaders will gather for a five-day retreat near Mt. Hood in Oregon. Here, we’ll start bonding as a leadership team; pore over trip itineraries; share our collective expertise as review safety, policies, and procedures; and apply child psychology and adolescent brain development theory to Adventure Treks. This time together reinforces our “AT culture” as we prepare to greet new and returning instructors for our two-week orientation starting June 9.
This year, our 12 trip leaders and directors:
- Average 28 years old.
- Have a combined 111 seasons of Adventure Treks experience. On average, they have 6.5 seasons of trips under their belt; our regional directors have 16 seasons of Adventure Treks experience.
- Include four former Adventure Treks students.
- Comprise a passionate, caring group of PhD candidates, graduate assistants, middle school teachers, EMTs, board members, ski and snowboard instructors, computer scientists, outdoor program course directors, experiential education coordinators, and gap instructors!
Below, meet our leadership team:
Dave McGlashan, executive director
Dave, or “Dmac,” has been with Adventure Treks since 2006. Originally from western North Carolina, he grew up going to summer camps in the area. He attended the University of Tennessee and earned a bachelor’s degree in human ecology, and then a master’s degree in recreation and leisure studies. After graduate school, Dmac came back to the Blue Ridge Mountains to be the associate director of Camp Arrowhead; he also spent time working for the Multnomah Education Service District Outdoor School in Oregon. He went on to work for a non-profit in Maine providing after-school programming for middle and high schoolers, focusing on outdoor adventure, community service, and life skills.
Dmac is the president of the board for the America Outdoors Association, graduate of the National Outdoor Leadership School, and wilderness first responder. He has explored the outdoors of Italy, Thailand, Vietnam, Nepal, France, Germany, Australia, and many more. In his free time, Dmac can often be found mountain biking in western North Carolina’s forests.
Amanda Fox, director
Amanda is a North Carolina native and an honors graduate from Appalachian State University with a bachelor’s degree in communication and journalism. After graduating, she moved to Boulder, CO, to be an editor for Climbing and SNEWS magazines; she also reported for the Outdoor Retailer Daily at the outdoor industry’s namesake twice-yearly trade show. There, she also became a yoga teacher. Her passion for teaching, communications, and being in the outdoors collided when she joined Adventure Treks in 2014. Amanda is a wilderness first responder and spends some time in the field during the Adventure Treks fall school group and gap semester programs. In her free time, Amanda can be found trail running, mountain biking, and cycling in the beautiful western NC mountains. She also serves as the vice president of the nonprofit board for the Friends of DuPont Forest.
Roisin Low, gap programs director
Roisin (pronounced Ro-sheen and known as “Ro” to our students) grew up in Cairns, Australia. She attended the University of Vermont, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies. Prior to Adventure Treks, she spent several years as a program instructor, teaching forest ecology and geology to campers 5 to 16 years old at the Keystone Science School in Keystone, CO. She’s also led multi-day canoeing trips on the 740-mile Northern Forest Canoe Trail; served as a Nature Conservancy intern, studying urban ecology; worked as a ski instructor in Colorado; and volunteered for the Cairns Turtle Rehabilitation Center in Australia.
Ro loves to travel and has visited Cambodia, Canada, many countries in Europe, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam. She is a wilderness first responder and spends her free time skiing, mountain biking, and rock climbing. Fun fact about Ro: She is not only an Australian citizen, but also one of Ireland and the United States!
Kent Ratliff, regional director
Originally from San Antonio, TX, Kent has spent a lot of time traveling between California and Vermont as a contractor building eco-friendly tiny houses. Since his time at AT last summer, Kent has been working on a data science project about energy equity with the University of Michigan, along with helping take care of his newborn nephew and website development. During his time at Middlebury, Kent was the school’s Outdoor Programs training specialist, coaching new guides to lead kayaking, canoeing, and rock climbing trips. He also led hiking, backpacking, kayaking, canoeing, and rock climbing trips for students as the Middlebury Mountain Club head guide. Kent is returning to Adventure Treks for his seventh season as a regional director.
Alex Rhue, regional director
Originally from southeastern Ohio, Alex is returning for her ninth season as a regional director. She’s been in the outdoor adventure game for almost a decade: During her undergrad years, Alex was a teaching assistant for her school’s department of recreation and outdoor education; she also worked as a trip leader and rock climbing wall staff member. Between seasons at Adventure Treks, she was a graduate assistant on OU, leading outdoor trips and teaching skills clinics. For two summers, she was also the assistant director for Avid 4 Adventure. She is currently pursuing a PhD in higher education at Ohio University.
Abby Bradley, British Columbia Challenge and Pacific Northwest Explorer
A Bostonian by birth, Abby spent the winter season at Big Sky Resort’s Moonlight Basin, coordinating outdoor activities for kids. She also just finished her master’s degree at WCU, with a thesis on women in positions of leadership in the outdoors. Prior to that, Abby worked in Asheville, NC, as a hiking guide and naturalist. Abby has worked with kids and teens and in the outdoors for years: She’s been a 1st grade teacher at a charter school; a trip leader for Camp Pinnacle; an outdoor educator at Mountain Trail Outdoor School in Hendersonville; and a discovery assistant at the North Carolina Arboretum in Asheville. She’s also worked as a wilderness field instructor for SUWS of the Carolinas; naturalist at Camp Grady Spruce in Texas; adventure counselor at Camp Sealth in Washington; and instructor at Camp Highland Outdoor Science School in California. Abby returns to Adventure Treks for her fourth season as a trip leader.
Anthony Molinaro, Alaska Expedition 1a
Anthony was raised near Allegheny National Forest in northern Pennsylvania and returns to Adventure Treks for his seventh season as a trip leader. While at West Virginia University, Anthony worked for the school’s outdoor program, Adventure West Virginia; there, he taught sea kayaking, whitewater kayaking, rock climbing, and other outdoor skills. He also led weeklong backcountry trips for incoming freshmen. Anthony has served in the United States Army Reserves, during which time he volunteered at a Salvation Army’s summer camp for elementary and middle schoolers. He recently finished his master’s degree at the University of New Hampshire.
Chloe Hutchins, Yellowstone Teton Adventure 1, 2, and 3
Born in San Diego, Chloe still calls southern California home today. This summer will be her second season with Adventure Treks. Prior to joining us, Chloe was a field instructor for New Vision Wilderness in Bend, OR, guiding adolescents and young adults on backpacking trips throughout the state. She was also the head field instructor for SUWS Carolinas in North Carolina, teaching outdoor and primitive skills like fire-making and Leave No Trace to kids and teens. While in college, Chloe has led kayaking and snorkeling tours, and also served as a childcare provider. She is a NOLS graduate, having completed a semester course in Patagonia.
Jess Myer, British Columbia Adventure 1 and 2
Jess hails from Asheville, NC, in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains. During her time at Emory & Henry College, Jess was the Outdoor Program intern, coordinating hiking and backpacking programs for students. She also led backpacking, whitewater kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, sea kayaking, canoeing, and rock climbing expeditions for underclassmen. She has worked on photo and video production for the non-profit organization Appalachian Sustainable Development, and she spent a few winter seasons as a ski instructor at Steamboat Resort in Colorado. Jess is returning to Adventure Treks for her fifth season as a trip leader (and is also our year-round logistics director).
Kalie Hirt, Colorado Explorer 1, 2, and 3
Kalie Hirt calls her native Chicago home, though she spent the past winter as a ski instructor at Deer Valley Ski Resort in Utah. Previously, she was an assistant teacher at Bernard Zell Anshe Emet Day School and an assistant teacher at Colorado College’s Cheryl Schlessman Bennett Children’s Center. A former Adventure Treks student, she has worked for camps every summer for the past eight years, including spending a summer at a camp in Israel (and can speak Hebrew). She was a trip leader for Camp Pinnacle, where she led backpacking and whitewater rafting trips. She also led backpacking trips for Ramah in the Rockies and was a trip leader for Colorado College’s outdoor education program, where she facilitated skiing trips for students. Kalie joins Adventure Treks for her third season as a trip leader.
Katy Pompili, California Challenge 2
Originally from West Virginia, Katy is returning to Adventure Treks for her fifth season as a trip leader. Most recently, she’s worked as a customer experience guide with Patagonia in Salt Lake City. Before that, she was an experiential education coordinator for the Science Adventure School in West Virginia. She’s spent a few winter seasons in Big Sky, MT, helping run the “20 Below” youth and family center at the Yellowstone Club. Also while at WVU, Katy was a trip leader with their outdoor program Adventure WV, guiding week-long backpacking, whitewater rafting, rock climbing, and team-building trips for incoming freshmen. She was also the manager for Adventure WV’s canopy tours, where her responsibilities included overseeing risk management and safety of the kids and teenagers who participated.
Kyle D’Ambrosio, California Challenge 1 and California Adventure 2
A California local, Kyle is returning to Adventure Treks for his second season as a trip leader. This past fall and spring, he worked as a gap semester instructor for ARCC in the Pacific Northwest and in Hawaii. During and after college, Kyle spent four years as a trip leader for his university’s outdoor program, Poly Escapes. There, he led backpacking, rock climbing, and camping trips throughout California’s national parks, including Sequoia & Kings Canyon, Yosemite, and Joshua Tree. He was also a board member, helping run the leadership and training program for new instructors. He spent some time volunteering for Camp Kesem in San Luis Obispo and at an eco-lodge in Costa Rica. In 2020, Kyle was a chemist for Promega Biosciences, working in the manufacturing department with the materials that go into making PCR test for kids.
Lucia Pierson, Alaska Expedition 1b
Currently living in western North Carolina, Lucia joins Adventure Treks for her third season as a trip leader. The last several years, Lucia has worked as the language arts teacher at the Arthur Morgan School, a boarding and day middle school in North Carolina with a focus on outdoor education and community living. Previously, she was a gap-year instructor for ARCC where she traveled around China, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Thailand with 18-year-old students; she’s also been a program instructor for Berkshire Outdoor Center in Massachusetts, facilitating environmental and outdoor education courses for children and adults of all ages. She spent a summer in New Zealand as an international travel and service program leader for the Auckland YMCA, and before that was an assistant psychologist for the Fundación General Ecuatoriana in Quito for young adults. While at Dartmouth, Lucia was the director of the first-year trips program; interned with Greenpeace; helped manage the college’s farm; and was a counselor at Camp Akeela in Vermont.
Max Minichiello, Ultimate Northwest 1 and Pacific Northwest Adventure 2
Max is returning to Adventure Treks for his fourth season as a trip leader. A Huntington Beach native, Max spent this winter as a ski instructor at Big Sky in Montana. Previously, he was in Burlington, VT, as the site coordinator for an after-school program. Max has also worked as an instructor at the Pok-O-MacCready Outdoor Education Center in New York, leading adventure programs in the Adirondacks for elementary and middle schoolers; an instructor for High Trails Outdoor Science School in California, teaching environmental classes; and a camp instructor for Catalina Island Marine Institute, leading snorkeling, kayaking, and high ropes activities.
Quincy Hirt, Alaska Expedition 2
Quincy was born and raised in Chicago, IL, but now resides in southern California. He is a former Adventure Treks student, having attended two trips as a teenager. Before returning to AT as an instructor, he was a wilderness trip leader for Camp Nebagamon in Wisconsin, leading multi-day canoeing, backpacking, sea kayaking, rock climbing, and mountain biking trips for boys. At USC, Quincy was a trip leader for Peaks and Professors, an organization that leads backpacking and hiking trips for both students and professors. He’s served as an intern for Los Angeles City Hall and is currently a research assistant for the Civic Health Project. Quincy is fluent in Spanish, has visited an astonishing 30 countries, and is returning to Adventure Treks for his third season as a trip leader.
Rach Brennan, Pacific Northwest Adventure 1 and Ultimate Northwest 2
A Colorado native, Rach is no stranger to the outdoor education and recreation world. Prior to joining Adventure Treks (she’s returning for her third season as a trip leader), Rach was a program instructor at the Keystone Science School; she taught classes on atmospheric science, biology and ecology, earth science, and survival skills. She also coordinated multi-day backpacking, rock climbing, and whitewater rafting trips. She’s also volunteered with the Greenwood Wildlife Rehabilitation Center; tutored elementary school students in math, language, reading and science; and worked as a research assistant at CU Boulder’s Emery Lab. This past winter, Rach was a ski instructor for both kids and adults at Big Sky Resort in Montana.
Sarah McLellan, California Adventure 1 and California Challenge 3
A Massachusetts native, Sarah is returning to Adventure Treks for her third season as an instructor. However, her tenure with AT began long before that, as she spent four summers with us as a student! This past winter, Sarah was a children’s alpine ski instructor and nordic ski instructor at the Yellowstone Club in Big Sky, Montana. During her time at Saint Michael’s College, Sarah was a student coordinator for the Adventure Sports Center; she not only organized the training and programming, but also led whitewater kayaking, sea kayaking, canoeing, and skiing trips for participants as well. She’s worked as a zipline guide at the Sunday River Ski Resort in Maine, and she was an instructor for the LL Bean Outdoor Discovery School, leading stand-up paddleboarding and kayaking classes, taking students on hikes, and teaching archery courses.
After we finalize our summer hiring, we will post assigned staff teams this month!