With the skills I learn at the 2019 International Trails Symposium and Training Institute, I will be able to better plan and execute my large scale trail projects. With the exposure to ideas from a diverse group of people, as well as being able to share my ideas with them and receive feedback, I feel that I will have an opportunity to grow both personally and professionally. In addition, I will have the chance to bring back the skills and knowledge I gain to my organization, therefore multiplying the impact of the Symposium. Through this I hope to continue furthering the conversation about the construction of sustainable trails through new and exciting mindsets.
Currently, I am the Trails and Vista Administrator for Tennessee State Parks. I oversee about 1,200 miles of multi-use trails spread across 56 State Parks and 85 Natural Areas. With the support of park staff I help to design, maintain, and construct trails throughout our state’s varied habitats. In my 3 ½ years with Tennessee State Parks I have had the opportunity to participate in many exciting projects that have helped to propel our trails to the next level; from completing a state wide trail assessment using digital GIS cloud-based technology to making a concerted effort to use flexible porous pavement made from locally recycled tires in place of concrete/asphalt for our hard surface trails. I have had the chance to work with a variety of talented people while expanding my understanding of trails and what they mean to people, and I am excited to continue that journey.