Emerging Trail Leader Scholarship Recipient


Amanda Wheelock

Asheville, North Carolina, United States

Between hiking with my parents, trail running with friends, and leading backpacking trips for the next generation of explorers, trails have been an integral part of my life. Growing up in the Appalachians, the Appalachian Trail has played a particularly important role for me, and I feel very privileged to work for the Appalachian Trail Conservancy. Personally, I hope to attend the 2017 International Trails Symposium for the opportunity to learn about other trails, their conservation and management strategies, and what others are doing to make the trails community more inclusive and welcoming to people that have historically been underrepresented, and at times excluded, from conservation and outdoor recreation. I feel strongly that it is my calling to share the magic that I’ve felt on trails with those who haven’t had the same opportunities, and attending ITS will allow me to learn strategies for how to do so and meet other professionals working to do the same.

Additionally, this year’s symposium location of Dayton, OH, and the resulting focus on revitalizing communities through trails, makes this opportunity incredibly relevant to my work as the A.T. Community liaison for the southern states of the A.T. We will be hosting our first A.T. Community Regional Summits in March 2017. I hope to bring the concerns and ideas of our A.T. Community leaders that I hear at this summit to the Symposium, and return with potential strategies to make the A.T. and ATC a better resource for our trailside community partners.

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217 views • posted 12/13/2022