Staff

The Mountaineers is home to world-class staff supporting a thriving community of outdoor recreationists and conservationists. Meet our staff and view our employment opportunities to join the team.

Tom VoglTom Vogl

Chief Executive Officer

Joined Staff: 2016

Phone: 206-521-6009

As Chief Executive Officer, Tom oversees the Seattle Program Division, the Publishing Division,  Tacoma facility staff, and Olympia youth staff while reporting to the Board President to work in concert with the Board of Directors. 

Background: Tom joins The Mountaineers with more than 20 years of general management, marketing expertise, and capacity building experience with a variety of organizations, including REI, The Clymb, Redfin, and Dell. A graduate of Harvard Business School, Vogl brings extensive experience in the outdoor industry, including six years as senior vice president for marketing at REI from 2006 to 2012. In the four years prior to joining The Mountaineers staff, he worked as Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Operating Officer in Seattle’s start-up community. His expertise has also impacted several nonprofit organizations. He has served on the board of directors of The REI Foundation, and the Chief Seattle Council of Boy Scouts of America as well as a committee of the National Parks Advisory Board. A passionate climber, backcountry skier and outdoor adventurer, he has explored many wilderness areas of the Pacific Northwest since moving to Seattle with his family in 2006.

Core Responsibilities: Provides leadership, direction, and support for The Mountaineers staff. Works with the Board of Directors to support the strategic vision, operational plans, and resourcing to execute the  mission with a high degree of integrity and fiscal responsibility. Represents The Mountaineers with external stakeholders such as financial supporters, partner organizations, legislators, and public land managers. Ensures that the needs of members and the broader outdoor community are well-understood and Mountaineers programs deliver optimal impact. 

Outdoor Activities: Backcountry skiing, mountaineering, rock climbing, backpacking, cycling

More: To me, adventure is all about the excitement of discovery. It’s going to a new place, meeting different people along the way, challenging yourself to try new activities, or nurturing lifelong passions. Living in the Northwest since 2006 and raising a family here has opened up a whole new world of adventures to me. I’m constantly struck by how fortunate we are to live in such a great place.

Program Division

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GARRETT ARNOLD

Facility Rental and Events Manager

Joined Staff: 2017

Phone: 206-521-6005

As the Event and Facility Manager, Garrett works to coordinate and promote Mountaineer events - such as BeWild, Banff Film Festival, and MountainFilm Festival - and manage the Seattle Program Center facilities.

Background: Hailing from North Idaho, Garrett has held a variety of roles spanning the outdoor industry, education, and the tech world. Garrett received his Bachelors in Biology from the University of Florida and worked as a research assistant for two summers on the north slope of the Brooks Range in Alaska. Additionally, he's worked as a graduate student and ecology teacher in South Africa interned at the Wilderness Society in Washington D.C. and worked as an outdoor guide and community specialist in New York City. Since arriving in Seattle in the summer of 2015, he could not be more excited to live, work and play in the mountains of the Pacific Northwest.

Core Responsibilities: Manages room rentals for the Seattle Program Center and coordinates sponsored events (film festivals, speaker series). Supports The Mountaineers community through events, reserving Seattle Program Center space for courses and activities, and optimizes the spaces by renting space to outside organizations. Manages the Facility Manager and Facilities Assistant; Reports to the Operations Director. 

Outdoor Activities: Rock climbing, triathlon, kayaking, gardening, natural history

More: In his free time, Garrett frequently serves as a volunteer with the Washington Trails Association trail maintenance crews. He’s a certified wilderness first responder, Mountaineers intermediate alpine student, and he loves finding his Zen while baking fresh bread.


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Tiffany Ban

Member Services Associate

Joined Staff: 2019

Phone: 206-521-6001
Email Tiffany

Tiffany is one of the friendly voices on the phone when you call the Program Center. Her goal is to support members and volunteers various technological needs and create  a positive experience through good customer service.

Background: Tiffany was born and raised in Mililani, Hawaii. She moved to Colorado for college because she had envisioned a life near the Rocky Mountains since she was a child.  After finishing a degree in Natural Resources Management at Colorado State University, she taught English in Japan and then relocated to Seattle, drawn to its beauty and access to outdoor recreation opportunities.  She worked in customer service roles after arriving, and then eventually in environmental consulting.  She worked as an EPA contractor at an environmental consulting firm, but when the company closed its Seattle office, Tiffany returned to school to complete an M.S. in Hydrology at UW.  She worked as a Dam Safety Engineer for Seattle Public Utilities for several years before joining the Mountaineers team to do work that more closely aligns with her love of the outdoors, commitment to environmental stewardship and the chance to share these values with others.  She is looking forward to continuing to connect to the Pacific Northwest’s outdoor community through the Mountaineers.

Core Responsibilities: Tiffany responds to inquiries through info@mountaineers.org, assists members in learning about and registering for courses and activities, processes cancellations and refunds, onboards new members and supports volunteers in listing programs online.  She also staffs the bookstore and front desk.

Outdoor Activities: Rock climbing, mountain biking, trail running, hiking and backpacking, cycling, Nordic skiing and a bit of mountaineering.

More: When not outside with her husband and friends, Tiffany does Tahitian and Hula dance to stay connected with the culture of her home, studies Spanish, travels and works on the Sprinter van she converted to a camper with the help of van blogs and YouTube.


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Andy Bassett 

Associate Director of Education & curriculum

Joined Staff: 2017

Phone: 206-521-6015
Email Andy

Background: Originally from North Carolina, Andy migrated west 10 years ago after completing a Masters in Education at Appalachian State University. He took a job as a University Relations Officer at NOLS, originally planning to stay out west for only a few years. However, the snow-capped peaks, clear streams and wildflowers eventually won him over and he forgot to leave. Over those 10 years, Andy worked as a field instructor at NOLS, installed solar-panels, drove a vegetable-oil-powered bus, and coordinated a university adventure program. 

Core Responsibilities:  Responsible for oversight of Mountaineers Youth Education Programs in Seattle, Everett, Kitsap, and Olympia, including Mountaineers Adventure Club, Explorers, Pathfinders, Nomads, Mini Mountaineers, Summer and Break Camp. Oversees the Associate Youth Manager for Camps and Clubs in Seattle and Olympia.  Oversees elearning programs. Reports to Director of Programs and Operations. 

Outdoor Activities: Rock climbing, trail running, bike packing, and backcountry skiing.

More: Andy was initially drawn to the simplicity of outdoor life and the transferable of skills learned outside. He is excited to work with the next generation of outdoor adventurers of the PNW, helping them to foster an innate sense of wonder and an appreciation of wild spaces. Andy also plays the ukulele, brews his own beer, and bakes a mean loaf of sourdough. 

Pronouns: he/him


Jeff Bowman Profile

Jeff Bowman

IT manager

Joined Staff: 2000

Phone: 206-521-6002
Email Jeff

Jeff keeps his fingers in a lot of pies at The Mountaineers. He has served on staff since February 2000 and been a member since May 1994. A "jack of all trades," he is currently working as the IT (Information Technology) Manager and Bookstore Manager, and helps our Member Services Team.

Core Responsibilities: Manages local area networks and computers  at our Program Centers and Books offices and warehouse. Oversees website support and project management and Salesforce support, report and dashboard development, email automation, and project management. Manages the Seattle Program Center Bookstore, including purchasing and sales. Manages IT contractors: Jazkarta, Percolator Consulting, Cheyette & Associates, and Interface Technologies Northwest. Reports to Director of Operations.

Background: Jeff’s undergraduate alma mater is West Virginia University - whose mascot moniker is also The Mountaineers (it's also his parents’ alma mater). Jeff was born and raised in West Virginia, so he’s been a “Mountaineer” all his life. He obtained BS and MS degrees in chemical engineering and worked five years for DuPont. At the University of Washington, he spent a lot of time writing FORTRAN code, so he’s very happy with his new IT responsibilities. He has completed several courses with The Mountaineers, has been leading climbs since 1998, and reached the summit of Denali in 2003. Over the years, Jeff has taught, helped design, or revise nearly all of the climbing courses we offer. He’s currently teaching Intermediate Rescue Methods, the Climbing Self-Rescue Course, the Denali Expedition Planning Seminar, and Aid & Big Wall Climbing Course. He served as illustrations coordinator for the 7th and 8th editions of Mountaineering: The Freedom of the Hills, and helped with the 9th edition.

Outdoor Activities: Climbing, skiing, hiking, backpacking, and biking.

More: There’s life outside of The Mountaineers? Well, maybe a little...says Jeff. In winter, Jeff teaches skiing for Clancey's Ski School at the Stevens Pass Ski Resort. When time permits, Jeff enjoys cooking, mostly Italian and fruit desserts like cobblers, crisps, buckles and pies! Being the bookstore manager also keeps Jeff busy reading, mostly in his spare time and even on a Kindle. His favorite quote is "brevity is the soul of wit" Hamlet Act 2, Scene 2. Jeff’s favorite climb is Mount Logan: "all-in-all the most spectacularly enjoyable alpine climb done with some great friends!" His favorite ski descent: "anything as long as the snow is good!"


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Amber Carrigan

Development Director

Joined Staff: 2018

Phone: 206-521-6004
Email Amber

As the Development Director, Amber is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the development program, which raises significant philanthropic support for the programming and publishing efforts of The Mountaineers and Mountaineers Books. She works collaboratively with donors, members, volunteers, foundations, and corporations to advance The Mountaineers’ ambitious outdoor education, youth and family programming, and conservation goals. She inspires our community to give to help The Mountaineers transform lives and protect our wild places for generations to come.

Core Responsibilities: Overall development program oversight, major gift cultivation and solicitation, planned giving program management, staff liaison to Development Committee, Development communications oversite (annual report, mailed campaigns), special event lead and oversight of corporate and foundation relations. Manages Donor Events Manager, Donor Relations Manager, and Corporate and Foundations Relations Manager. Member of The Mountaineers Leadership Team. Reports to the CEO.

Background: Amber joined The Mountaineers with eight years of experience in nonprofit fundraising and special event management. She previously served as the Development and Communications Manager at Outdoor Outreach in San Diego, a nonprofit that provides transformative outdoor adventure experiences to disadvantaged teens in San Diego. With several years of experience in partnering with the greater outdoor community in support of nonprofits, Amber is excited to join The Mountaineers and empower more people to explore and defend our wild places.

Outdoor Activities: Hiking, snowshoeing, backpacking, bouldering, camping of all sorts. Currently enrolled in The Mountaineers navigation, compressed scrambling, and intense basic climbing courses.


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Kristina Ciari

Membership & Communications Director

Joined Staff: 2013

Phone: 206-521-6023
Email Kristina

As the Membership and Communications Director, Kristina is responsible for energizing and engaging with The Mountaineers community to grow membership and our coalition of volunteers. She works collaboratively with members and volunteers to organize events and provide resources and materials for membership development and enhancement. She oversees brand marketing and communications, including directing content for the website and outbound communications, to provide clear communication and greater marketing support for the organization and volunteer leaders.

Core Responsibilities: Overall communications and branding, including blog writing and editing, website content management, video production, Mountaineer magazine, event support, and creation of membership emails, promotions, and communications. Works with the Board of Directors on strategic outcomes and investments. Manages Creative Manager, Communications Specialist, and Member & Data Manager (who oversees Member Services Team). Member of The Mountaineers Leadership Team. Reports to the CEO.

Background: Kristina’s passion for the outdoors began at age 3 in Bozeman, Montana, where she grew up skiing in the Rocky Mountains. After moving to Seattle to attend the UW, she quickly fell in love with the lush greenery and endless outdoor pursuits available in the Pacific Northwest. As a backcountry skier and proud Turns All Year participant, Kristina can be found on the side of a mountain somewhere chasing snow, generally in a tutu. She credits the outdoor community with continually inspiring her to try bigger and better adventures, and she is looking forward to building lifelong friendships at The Mountaineers. Kristina is excited to join The Mountaineers to facilitate memorable outdoor experiences for all. Kristina holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Marketing from the University of Washington.

Outdoor Activities: Backcountry skiing, climbing, running, mountaineering, cycling, building spectacular campfires, and adventure traveling. 

More: Kristina loves writing and maintains a blog full of irreverence at www.occasionallyepic.com


tailor dolgin staff.pngTailor Dolgin

Associate Youth Programs Manager

Joined Staff: 2019

Phone: 206-521-6046
Email Tailor

Background: Tailor grew up in Fort Collins, Colorado and spent her childhood frolicking in and on the edge of the Rocky Mountains. However it wasn’t until she started school at Pacific University in Forest Grove, OR that she became immersed in the outdoors. Over the course of her undergraduate career, Tailor backpacked in four different states, rock climbed in three different countries, and threw up on Mount Rainier once (it’s a great story, ask her about it sometime!). Since graduating with her degree in English Literature and Outdoor Leadership, she has worked seasonal outdoor education gigs in the mountains of Idaho and Colorado. Tailor is excited to join the Mountaineers community and for the opportunity to provide transformational adventure experiences in such a beautiful, bountiful state. 

Core Responsibilities: Provides programming and leadership to the Seattle Branch Youth Outreach and Camp Programs, including Summer Camps, Break Camps, After-school Programs and Mountain Workshops. Ensures that all logistical details within these program are aligned. Supervises the Youth Outreach Coordinator and works along with them to oversee the Gear Library and Mini Mountaineers programs in Seattle. Reports to the Youth Education Manager.

Outdoor Activities: Backpacking, rock climbing, relearning to ski, mountaineering, and being generally overwhelmed by beautiful things outside.

More:  One of my fondest expedition memories is of the day we grocery shopped for 40 people to spend 12 days backpacking and rafting in Patagonia National Park. We bought the main store in Coyhaique, Chile out of all their summer sausage and cheese, and bought more than 100 rolls of cookies in broken Spanish. 

Pronouns: She/Her


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Sarah Macgillivray

Development Manager

Joined Staff: 2020

Phone: 206-521-6026
Email Sarah

As the Development Manager, Sarah oversees corporate relations and helps to coordinate donor-related special events, including the fundraising gala. Working closely with staff across The Mountaineers and Mountaineers Books, the Board of Directors, and external partners, Sarah  implements a broad suite of fundraising and stewardship strategies that deepen donor engagement with The Mountaineers programs and priorities.

Background: Sarah found her home in Seattle in 2015 when she moved from Fort Collins, C.O. to pursue her masters degree in sports administration and leadership at Seattle University. Sarah played soccer through college and grew up playing in the Rocky Mountains in her backyard. She worked in event management in collegiate athletics at Seattle University and then in game presentation and event management in professional sports at Seattle Sounders FC. However, her fierce love for the outdoors and passion for the mission of The Mountaineers brought her to The Mountaineers community as the Development Manager. As a collaborative, creative, and proactive leader, Sarah's mission is to create an inclusive environment to enrich lives through outdoor recreation, education, and conservation.

Core Responsibilities: Manages all work leading to single and multi-year funding from corporations. Procures and manages in-kind donations for organization-wide initiatives and coordinates the delivery of all sponsorship benefits. Reporting to the Director of Development, Sarah works with the Development Staff and board committee members to oversee all aspects of event planning for donor related events, including planning, negotiating contracts, managing event collateral, and collaborating with corporate sponsors. Primary staff contact for annual fundraising gala.

Outdoor Activities: Hiking, backpacking, camping, skiing, and snowshoeing


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Carl Marrs

Associate Youth program manager, clubs

Joined Staff: 2017

Phone: 206-521-6014
Email Carl

As the Associate Program Manager for Clubs, Carl oversees the five year-round youth clubs of The Mountaineers – Pathfinders, Nomads, Explorers, Jr. MAC and the Mountaineers Adventure Club (MAC). He serves as an advisor to the elected youth leadership council of MAC as they plot the course of their club and leads many of their trips. He also supervises the Youth Field Coordinator, who works closely with the families of the Pathfinders - Jr. MAC cohorts to help foster a love of the outdoors and the skillset to enjoy them safely. He can be found leading climbing, skiing, backpacking, hiking, and kayaking trips for these clubs every month of the year.

Core Responsibilities: Manages the Mountaineers Adventure Club, overseeing all logistical details of various outings/trips, meetings, and skills workshops. Supervises the Youth Field Coordinator, who works directly with the Pathfinders - Jr. MAC cohorts. Ensures qualified volunteer leadership is supporting all of these activities and participates directly as a leader in many of them. Reports to Youth Education Manager.

Background: Carl's career has been focused entirely on outdoor and climbing education. He is an Apprentice Rock Guide and certified Single Pitch Instructor with the AMGA. He is a graduate of the Mountaineers Basic Climbing Course (2010) and has been a Mountaineers climb leader since 2017. His climbing experience is complimented by a Bachelor’s Degree in Business w/ a focus in Finance and International Business from the University of Washington (2014). Carl is overjoyed to get the chance to combine the knowledge he has gained from many years of climbing all over the west coast with his formal studies to provide everyone who participates in the Mountaineers youth programs an opportunity for learning and growth.

Outdoor Activities: Alpine and rock climbing, highlining, slacklining, cycling, mountaineering, and skiing.

More: A native to the Pacific Northwest, Carl has been exploring the forests, mountains and cliff sides of the Cascades and Olympics since co-founding an outdoor sports club at Edmonds-Woodway High School. Most recently, his explorations have led him to the establishment of many highlines around Washington State. His adventures up high can be followed on Instagram.


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Ken Mullins

Development Associate

Joined Staff: 2018

Phone: (206) 521-6032
Email Ken

As the Development Associate, Ken is responsible for advancing The Mountaineers mission through donor recognition, gift processing, and database management. This includes implementing gift processing and donor acknowledgment, maintaining gift club benefits, tracking donor relationships, and assisting with solicitation and thank you letters. Reporting to the Assistant Director of Development, Ken partners with Bri to develop our donor stewardship and recognition programs. As the primary staff support for the Board of Directors and Advisory Council, Ken also schedules, coordinates, and organizes the Board and Advisory Council meetings, conference calls and helps onboard new Board members. 

Background: Ken joins The Mountaineers with 8 years of experience in the nonprofit and outdoor industries. He previously worked with local environmental nonprofits advocating for increased protection of Washington’s waterways, natural areas, and iconic landscapes. His passion for the outdoors has led him across the country, where he has served with AmeriCorps in Colorado and Cape Cod, taught at an outdoor science school in California, lead backpacking and climbing trips in the Adirondacks, and worked on fire crew with The Nature Conservancy in Georgia. He ended up in Seattle for grad school, where he holds an M.P.A. in Environmental Policy from the Evans School of Public Policy & Governance and B.S. in Economics from North Carolina State University with a focus on Environmental Economics. 

Outdoor Activities: Mountain biking, hiking, snowshoeing, skiing, kayaking, photography, and backpacking.

More: Outside of being in the mountains or on the water, you will mostly likely find Ken with a soccer ball on his foot or basketball in his hand. Fun Fact: Ken has a twin brother. And no, they are not identical.


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Leigh Noble

Staff Accountant

Joined Staff: 2020

Phone: 206-521-6010
Email Leigh

As Staff Accountant, Leigh keeps volunteers, vendors, and staff happy by processing reimbursements, invoices, and payroll. In addition to paying the bills for The Mountaineers, Leigh records incoming dollars and loves to keep the balance sheet accounts reconciled.

Background: Leigh has 20 years of accounting experience in various industries, and is thrilled to work for The Mountaineers as her values and interest align with the organization. In the summer she spends the majority of her free time hiking and backpacking the spectacular trails of the Pacific Northwest. Her proudest accomplishment is thru-hiking all 2,650 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail from the border of Mexico to Canada in 2018. She has also climbed all five of the volcanoes in Washington State more than once and traveled to 37 countries.

Outdoor Actives: hiking, backpacking, running, snowshoeing, kayaking, and reading Mountaineers Books titles in a hammock by an alpine lake.


Hailey-Staff-Template.jpgHailey Oppelt

Communications Manager

Joined Staff: 2018

Phone: (206) 521-6039
Email Hailey

Core Responsibilities: Edits and curates content for Mountaineers blogs and  Mountaineer magazine. Aids in the creation of all outgoing communications, including Conservation Currents, Routefinder, and Branch emails. Creates, develops, and manages content for social media channels, monitoring engagement levels and general analytics.  Ensures that our membership is feeling engaged and up-to-date on events, activities, and courses by cultivating the communication channels of our Mountaineers community. Reports to the Membership and Communications Director.

Background: Hailey joins The Mountaineers with a BA in international studies from the University of Washington. Her passion for conservation and the outdoors started young, working on a trail crew in the Olympic National Forest through the Student Conservation Association. She went on to complete an AmeriCorps service term in the City of Seattle’s Department of Neighborhoods, operating a neighborhood outreach and grant program for low-income communities before joining The Mountaineers.

Outdoor Activities: Climbing, hiking, backpacking, skiing

More: As a native of Washington, Hailey spent her youth camping, boating, fishing, swimming, and canoeing in the Pacific Northwest. She has extensive experience crab racing and catching dogfish. You can often find her rolling off a trail at dusk or compulsively picking up litter.


Becca Polglase ProfileBecca Polglase

director of programs & operations


Joined Staff: 2010

Phone: 206-521-6011
Email Becca

Background: Becca brings 20 years of experience in Outdoor Experiential Education to her work at The Mountaineers. She has a Master of Science in Organizational Management and Leadership from Springfield College. Becca is also a Leave No Trace trainer, a graduate of Outward Bound’s Wilderness Educator’s Course, and volunteers on the Seattle Canyoning Committee. She moved to the Pacific Northwest in 2010 after almost a decade in New England.  As Director of Programs and Operations, Becca provides guidance and direction for Mountaineers Youth Programs, Volunteer Leadership Development for our adult outdoor education programs, Risk Management and Operating Procedures.

Core Responsibilities: Provides oversight for Youth Education Programs and Adult Leadership Development Programs. Provides leadership for the Youth Education Team in driving vision, program strategy, budget strategy, and outcomes measurement for a suite of youth programs in multiple branches. Provides leadership for the Leadership Development Team in developing strategy and tactics to support volunteers in meaningful but resource-efficient ways, and to create a strong culture of outdoor leadership development among our adult programs. Works with the Board of Directors on strategic outcomes and investments. Supports Risk Management protocols and Operating procedures for the organization. Liaisons with a  variety of organizational partners including the American Alpine Club, Mazamas, Colorado Mountain Club, Appalachian Mountain Club, and Washington Trails Association. Manages: Youth Education Manager, Tacoma Program Manager, Adult Education Managers, eLearning Course Developer, Volunteer Coordinator. Reports to CEO.

Outdoor Activities: Nordic skiing (skate & classic, but mostly skate), canyoning, canoeing, hiking

More: As an outdoor enthusiast, defender of public lands, astronomy and geology hobbyist, occasional tide-pooler and lover of Ponderosas, I am thrilled to be in the Pacific Northwest and honored to be a part of The Mountaineers. I am inspired by the dedication of our volunteers on a daily basis, and love being a part of the Washington nonprofit and outdoor community.


Sara Ramsay

Associate Director of Leadership & Operations

Joined Staff: 2017

Phone: 206-521-6043

Sara oversees The Mountaineers leadership development and outreach programs. She works collaboratively across departments to ensure that our volunteers have the resources they need to run their programs, and she works directly with both volunteers and staff to ensure smooth and efficient program operations.

Core Responsibilities: Oversees volunteer leadership development and recognition. Oversees outreach programs, including Mountain Workshops and the Gear Library. Serves as primary staff support for the Branch Leadership Committee and provides guidance and support for questions about Mountaineers policies and procedures. Manages staff and volunteer relationships with public land managers and administers annual permits. Oversees The Mountaineers fleet of vehicles. Manages the Associate Volunteer Development Manager and Associate Outreach Programs Manager. Reports to the Director of Programs & Operations.

Background: Growing up in the greater Seattle area, Sara fell in love with the mountains and waterways of Washington State. Sara joined The Mountaineers with more than 10 years of experience in the outdoor industry, having worked for a variety of non-profits around the country with a focus on outdoor adaptive recreation. Throughout all of these experiences, Sara has had the opportunity to work alongside volunteers in many different capacities, and she is excited to share her passion for the outdoors with our community of outdoor enthusiasts at The Mountaineers!

Outdoor Activities: Skiing, backpacking, mountain biking, kayaking, hiking

More: In her free time, Sara enjoys skiing, backpacking, running, and mountain biking with good friends. Her current PNW bucket list includes hiking the Wonderland Trail and skiing some of the area's volcanoes. Sara also volunteers with PSIA-NW, supporting the development of the Adaptive exam standards in the NW division.

Pronouns: She/Her


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Betsy Robblee

Conservation & Advocacy Director

Joined Staff: 2020

Phone: 206-521-6012

As the Conservation and Advocacy Director, Betsy leads The Mountaineers conservation and advocacy programming, including driving partnerships, executing advocacy campaigns and communications, and supporting fundraising efforts that result in long-term outcomes to protect public lands and the outdoor experience.  

Background: Betsy joined The Mountaineers with ten years of experience in policy, advocacy, and community engagement experience. She previously served as the Policy and Outreach Manager at the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Coalition, where she led advocacy campaigns in support of funding for conservation and recreation projects in Washington state. Earlier in her career, she spent six years in Washington, DC as a legislative aide to Senator Patty Murray and Congressman Rick Larsen. As an outdoor enthusiast and an advocate for our wild places, Betsy is honored for the opportunity to engage The Mountaineers community to protect public lands.

Core Responsibilities: Build and maintain relationships with legislative offices, land managers, and partner organizations; shape and influence conservation and recreation legislation and land management decisions; develop and implement conservation policy and planning campaigns, and oversee implementation of all conservation communications. Serves as a member of the senior leadership team, leads the board-level Conservation and Advocacy Committee and Carbon Footprint Reduction Committee, reports to the CEO.

Outdoor Activities: Trail running, mountaineering, hiking, backpacking, climbing, skiing, cycling.

More: After her stint in the nation’s capital, Betsy took a “sabbatical” from policy work and traveled solo for 8 months, attended culinary school, cooked in Seattle-area restaurants and in the South of France, and taught yoga. She still enjoys experimenting in the kitchen when not in the mountains. 

Pronouns: She/Her


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JK Rockett

Member Services Associate

Joined Staff: 2021

Phone: 206-521-6001 (member services line)
Email JK

JK is one of the friendly voices on the phone when you call the Program Center. His goal is to support members and volunteers various technological needs and create a positive experience through good customer service.

Core Responsibilities: In Member Services, JK assists members in course and activity enrollment, supports volunteers in listing programs online, processes cancellations and refunds, onboards new members, processes donations, responds to inquiries from info@mountaineers.org, and provides general support to our membership.

Background: A nomad turned mountaineer, JK has found a home in the mountains and waters of the PNW after many years on the move as a seasonal employee with various National Parks and Monuments, State Parks, and farms. Originally an architecture student at the University of Virginia, JK shifted his focus from indoor spaces to outdoor places after transformative experiences WWOOFing in New Zealand on organic farms and working as an SCA/Americorps intern with North Cascades National Park. Since then, he’s worked for a farmer’s market in Charlottesville, VA, performed historic preservation masonry and backcountry archaeological site monitoring at Tuzigoot and Montezuma Castle NMs in AZ, and performed customer service and site rehabilitation duties for Alta Lake and Lake Chelan State Parks. To make ends meet when moving from Eastern WA to Seattle, JK traded a tractor for a UPS truck and drove for three peak seasons. He is thrilled to join The Mountaineers and return to work that aligns with his values of equity and inclusion in outdoor recreation, quality outdoor education, and environmental stewardship. JK has a B.A. in History from the University of Virginia.

Outdoor Activities: Backpacking, hiking, and trail running are his bread and butter. He’s had the immense privilege of exploring the Olympics and North Cascades, the deserts and canyons of Arizona and Utah, the White Mountains of New Hampshire, and the foothills of Virginia and New Zealand. He’s looking forward to branching out into technical climbing with The Mountaineers. You can also find him paddleboarding, skiing, snowshoeing, or training for a triathlon.


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Katy Snyder

Youth Field Coordinator

Joined Staff: 2020

Email Katy

Background: Katy is an outdoor enthusiast, people-person, and visual designer. She was born and raised in Seattle, but considers Ireland to be her second home after living there for one year post graduation. Her passion for the outdoors was born in high school when she joined The Mountaineers, becoming a founding member and eventually president of the Mountaineers Adventure Club (MAC). Since then, she has led dozens of technical outdoor excursions in the backcountry for high school and college students, having graduated with degrees in Graphic/Web Design and Outdoor Leadership. When traveling, she loves immersing herself in unfamiliar cultures; finding peaks to summit; sketching the sites; meeting locals and eating their cuisine (including Labskaus in Germany and Crni Rižot in Croatia); and consuming ice cream almost everywhere she goes.

Core Responsibilities: Katy manages the Junior MAC, Explorers, Nomads, and Pathfinders cohorts, overseeing logistical details of various outings and trips, meetings, and skills workshops. She supports management of the Mountaineers Adventure Club and related logistics and trips. Katy ensures qualified volunteer leadership is supporting all of these activities and participates directly as a leader in many of them. She reports to the Associate Youth Program Manager of Clubs.

Outdoor Activities: Rock climbing, hiking, backpacking, traveling, sketching, photography, and hanging out with friends while taking in the beautiful natural surroundings.

More: Katy loves being creative, especially within the outdoors and shares here drawings and designs on her personal portfolio.


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Michelle Song

Associate Volunteer Development Manager

Joined Staff: 2021

Phone: 206-521-6042
Email Michelle

Michelle supports The Mountaineers volunteer base of 3,000+ volunteer leaders, instructors, committee members, and branch council members. She oversees development and volunteer recognition programs, as well as all related monthly and annual communications, for both adult and youth programs. Working closely with a mix of staff, key volunteers, and external partners, Michelle collaborates to provide high-quality, impactful programming for Mountaineers volunteers.

Core Responsibilities: Scheduling and success of The Mountaineers robust leadership development and volunteer recognition programs and events. Develop and manage relationships with leadership development presenters and content experts. Develop and implement program volunteer evaluations. Curation of the Education Department’s scheduled and ongoing communications with Mountaineers volunteers. Manage and write content for LeaderLines, quarterly magazine contributions for the Education Department, and Education Department blogs. Reports to the Associate Director of Leadership & Operations.

Background: Michelle is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Organizational Leadership with a concentration in Change Leadership from Gonzaga University. Prior to starting her Master’s program, she completed her Project Management certification from the University of Washington. She also holds a B.S. in Biology from the University of Washington. Michelle joins The Mountaineers after working for seven years as the Education Programs Manager for the environmental science nonprofit Nature Vision, where she led their programming development and staff management. Her love for serving volunteers and the environment was fostered during her AmeriCorps year with the Edmonds Community College’s Center for Service-learning and South Whidbey Island State Park’s partner organization, Service Education & Adventure.

Outdoor Activities: Backpacking, hiking, kayaking, and snowshoeing.

More: Michelle is thrilled to grow her community through The Mountaineers many activity and course offerings, such as sea kayaking. Michelle is also interested in fly fishing and is eager for any pro-tips!


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Barbara Sprecher

Controller

Joined Staff: 2018

Phone: 206-521-6008
Email Barbara

As Controller, Barbara oversees the Finance Department including financial statements, reporting, and all things numbers. She also works with payroll and Human Resources.

Background: Barbara joins The Mountaineers with a background in financial management for mid-size companies  As a native of Seattle, she grew up boating, hiking, fishing and spending summers in the San Juan Islands.  She has long aspired for a clean environment and loves working with an organization that promotes that mission.  Barbara holds a degree in Business with an emphasis in Accounting from Eastern Oregon University.


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Isabel "Issy" Steckel

Member Services Associate

Joined Staff: 2021

Phone: 206-521-6016 (member services line)
Email Issy

Issy is one of the friendly voices on the phone when you call the Program Center. Her goal is to support members and volunteers with various technological needs and create a positive experience through good customer service.

Core Responsibilities: In Member Services, Issy assists members in course and activity enrollment, supports volunteers in listing programs online, processes cancellations and refunds, onboards new members, processes donations, responds to inquiries from info@mountaineers.org, and provides general support to our membership.

Background: Growing up in the Bay Area, Issy’s love for outdoor adventure began at sleepaway camp in Yosemite. She was empowered to get outside of her comfort zone through backpacking trips (with a pack that was bigger than she was) and cliff jumping into freezing cold water.

Issy has traveled several interconnected pathways in the world of non-profits, following her passion for building more sustainable, connected, and just communities. Much of her work has focused on providing equitable access to education, including teaching writing to incarcerated students with the Center for Prison Education and bringing empathy education programs into K-12 schools in the Pacific Northwest with Narrative 4. She also has experience working on and for organic farms in Northern Italy, Connecticut, and Seattle.

She is thrilled to join The Mountaineers to share the joy of being outside with everyone!

Outdoor Activities: Trail running, cycling, hiking, backpacking, gardening, and finding every opportunity to soak up some sun.


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Hannah Tennent

associate outreach manager

Joined Staff: 2019

Phone: 206-521-6047
Email Hannah

As the Associate Outreach Manager, Hannah manages Mountain Workshops and the Gear Library, empowering people of all ages to develop skills, be safe, and have fun outdoors.

Background: Hannah grew up in the desert of New Mexico and got her first taste of what it was like to live in a green place when she attended Bowdoin College in Maine. After graduating with a B.A. in Earth and Oceanographic Science, she has held a variety of roles in the conservation and environmental world. This includes positions as an environmental educator in Massachusetts, an intern with Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico, a Volunteer Coordinator with Habitat for Humanity in Tacoma, and as an intern aboard the American Promise, the sailboat on which Dodge Morgan completed his solo, non-stop, global circumnavigation in 1986. Before joining The Mountaineers, Hannah worked with the Washington Trails Association and led trail work parties in Mt. Rainier National Park. She is thrilled to work with an organization that promotes conservation and share the joy of being outside with everyone. 

Core Responsibilities: Establish and maintain community relationships and work with youth groups to build programming that fits their students needs and hopes. Coordinate and maintain the Gear Library, ensuring that adventurers of all ages have what they need to get outside and adventure safely and comfortably. Reports to the Associate Director of Leadership & Operations. 

Outdoor Activities: Hiking, backpacking, learning to climb, lake swimming, and generally finding sunny spots in which to read, play games, and nap.

More: Being outside with folks and having the opportunity to learn from them and share my experiences is one of my favorite things to do. I’m thrilled to be able to do that with The Mountaineers and the next generation of explorers and conservationists. When I’m not wandering around outside looking for good views, I like to flex my competitive solitaire skills, try new recipes, and catch Pokémon. 

Pronouns: She/her


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BRIANNE VANDERLINDEN 

Associate Director of Development

Joined Staff: 2017

Phone: 206-521-6006
Email Bri

Core Responsibilities:  As a member of the fundraising team, Bri is responsible for effective  stewardship of our donor audience, The Mountaineers' giving clubs, including Peak Society and Summit Society, and serves as project manager for the department's strategic communications. Reporting to the Director of Development, Bri works to share the strategic vision of The Mountaineers and cultivates the culture of philanthropy inherent in the organization.  Manages the Development Associate. 

Background: Bri brings 15 years of professional experience in non-profit development, fundraising, communications, and donor stewardship. Currently pursuing an MBA from Seattle University, her passion for social justice and human connection grounds her in non-profit work. After starting her own business, Bri was introduced to The Mountaineers through her contract work on the annual Gala starting in 2013, and fell in love with the mission and vision of the organization. In previous positions, Bri worked as an fundraising auction consultant for seven years and later directed donor relations and fundraising events at The Museum of Pop Culture, Seattle University, and JDRF. 

Outdoor Activities: Hiking, urban exploration, backpacking, snowshoeing, fishing, camping, cycling, snowboarding, cloud watching, and meditation.

More from Bri: "What inspires me the most about working with The Mountaineers is how "adventure with purpose" encompasses everything we do.  The outdoor experience has played a critical role in my development and I am grateful for the lessons I continue to learn through seasonal rhythms and spending time in the natural environment. I love supporting others to get outside and witnessing the personal growth that occurs as they strengthen their connection with the earth."

Pronouns: she/her

Tacoma Program Center

SARAH HOLT

TACOMA PROGRAM MANAGER

Joined Staff: 2014

Phone: 253-566-6965

As our Tacoma Program Manager, Sarah is the jack of all trades for the Tacoma Branch. You’ll see her leading youth programs, managing the rental business, and supporting volunteers in any way she can.

Core Responsibilities: Programming and leading all Tacoma Branch Youth Programs, including Explorers, MAC, Summer Camp, and Mountain Workshops; Managing Tacoma Program Center rental business; Managing Tacoma Program Center facility and schedule; Providing advertising/communications/website/building support for Tacoma Branch leaders and members. Reports to Education Director.

Background: A UW grad with a degree in music education, Sarah has taught everything from kindergarten music to high school marching band. After seven years of teaching in local public schools, she decided to shift from teaching music to teaching outdoor skills. An avid hiker since her college days, Sarah’s interest in climbing was piqued after hiking the Wonderland Trail in 2010. In 2012, she found The Mountaineers, completed the Basic Climbing Course, and fell in love with mountaineering. 

Outdoor Activities: Climbing and Mountaineering, Skiing, Cycling, Hiking/Backpacking

More: When she's not working or chasing after her son, Sarah is also an active Climb Leader and volunteer for The Mountaineers. She currently is working on the Leadership Development Committee, and gets super stoked about finding new and better ways to teach our students and help our leaders grow.

Olympia 

programstaff_BeckyN.jpgBecky Nielsen

Olympia Youth Program manager

Joined Staff: 2018

Phone: 206-521-6044
Email Becky

As the Olympia Branch Youth Program Manager, Becky has her focus on building strong programs for youth specifically in the Olympia Branch. She works in conjunction with qualified volunteer leadership to ensure that all family and youth activities are well supported.

Core Responsibilities: Provides programming and leadership to all of the Olympia Branch Youth Programs, including Summer Camp and Mountain Workshops. Ensures that all logistical details within the youth program are aligned. Provides advertising, communications, and website support to Olympia Branch youth leaders and members. Reports to the Youth Education Manager.

Background: Growing up in the shadow of the Tetons, Becky’s enthusiastic passion for the outdoors has been a part of her life for as long as she can remember. With a BS in Sociology and an emphasis in international relations from BYU-Idaho, She joins The Mountaineers with over twelve years experience in program development and training management and has developed and directed numerous volunteer-led outdoor programs in multiple countries. She enjoys providing outdoor experiences for adventurers of all skill levels and continually encourages all to get out, explore, and protect our most beautiful places.

Outdoor Activities: Mountaineering, backpacking, alpine skiing, scuba diving, traveling, cycling, rock climbing, kayaking, and wilderness watercoloring.

More: The day I moved to Washington and caught the breathtaking glaciated mountains, I knew I would never leave. Every bit of the PNW speaks excitement and adventure, and raising three young girls to appreciate this is invigorating. They will push you to the top of St Helen’s, show all of the best huckleberry patches on Mt Rainier, as well as the coolest streams to soak your feet after a long days hike through the Olympics.  I am honored and excited to work with the next generation of our outdoor enthusiasts by providing others a chance to explore, discover, and create memories.