Current National Recreation/Water Trails: Make the Most of Your Designation!

This webinar showcases how current National Recreation and Water Trails have used this designation to promote their trails and present you with ideas to highlight your own project.

Presented by:

Event Details

** This event has passed **

November 03, 2016

10:30 AM to 12:00 AM (Pacific Time) {more time zones}

11:30 AM to 01:00 AM (Mountain Time)
12:30 PM to 02:00 AM (Central Time)
01:30 PM to 03:00 AM (Eastern Time)


FREE for members
FREE for nonmembers

Learning Credit Cost:

  • CEUs are FREE for this webinar.
  • Note:

    Closed Captioning is NOT available for this webinar.
    Learning Credits are NOT available for this webinar.


    Webinar Outline



    This webinar will showcase how current National Recreation and Water Trails have used this designation to promote their trails and present you with ideas to highlight your trail(s) during National Trails Day coming up in June 2017 and additional promotional opportunities throughout the year.

    The presenters will also discuss the 50th Anniversary of the National Trails System (October 2, 2018). With the anniversary coming up, we have plans to promote our current designated NRTs and NWTs at the 2017 International Trails Symposium taking place in Dayton, Ohio May 7-10, 2017 and would love to include you and your trail!


    Webinar Partners


    Rita Hennessy, National Park Service

    Rita Hennessy, longtime trails administrator and National Park Service veteran, is the new program manager for the Service’s National Trails System. Hennessy’s signature project at the Appalachian National Scenic Trail, or the AT, as it is called, was the cooperative management system. Within this system, she engaged with hundreds of partners and thousands of volunteers. Most recently, she led development of the trail’s foundation document and business plan.

    Hennessy holds an undergraduate degree in recreation resource management from the University of Montana and a master’s degree in community change and civic leadership from Antioch McGregor. She has 26 years with the National Park Service. In addition to her service on the Appalachian Trail, she has been stationed at Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks and at Rock Creek Park and the National Mall, both in Washington.


    Lelia Mellen, National Park Service

    Lelia Mellen works for the National Park Service Rivers & Trails Program as the National Water Trail Leader and the Director of New Hampshire Projects. This is a position she has held for over 20 years and as such she works with national water-oriented groups, community groups, local and state agencies, and nonprofits to help them with their conservation initiatives. These groups ask for assistance on river recreation and protection, open space protection and trail work.

    Lelia has helped with organizational development, fundraising, river and water trail management, trail building, event planning, and open space protection. In essence, she grasps the conservation needs and desires of the group and tries to help them meet their goals. Lelia received her Master of Environmental Management from Duke University and her Bachelor of Arts in Geography from Dartmouth College.


    Sarah Hippensteel Hall, Phd, Manager, Watershed Partnerships, Miami Conservancy District
    Dayton, Ohio

    Sarah believes that water is a critical element for community health and prosperity and communities who enjoy their rivers are more likely to protect their water. She currently serves as the Manager of Watershed Partnerships for the Miami Conservancy District, a 101-year old watershed agency. She builds diverse partnerships across many boundaries to protect and restore healthy rivers and aquifers, and improve and promote river access and recreation.

    She graduated from Antioch University in 2010 with a PhD in Leadership and Change. She also teaches undergraduate courses in leadership studies, and resource scarcity and conflict. In 2012 she was presented with a Distinguished Service Award by the Water Management Association of Ohio. In 2015 she was selected to give a TedX Talk entitled “Water. It’s time to make it personal.”


    Webinar Resources

    National Recreation Trails (NRT) website home page:

    National Water Trails System (NWTS) website home page:

    50th Anniversary of the National Trails System Act ~ October 2, 2018:

    National Park Service – Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance (RTCA):

    Miami Conservancy District:

    National Water Trails Toolbox:


    While we may individually agree (or disagree) in whole or in part with any or all of the participants, the views expressed in these webinars are not necessarily representative of the views of American Trails as an organization or its board and staff.

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