2023-2024 Leadership Development Series - It's a Wrap!

After an exciting seven months, we wrapped up our sixth year of the Leadership Development Series.
Michelle Song Michelle Song
Associate Director of Leadership
April 29, 2024
2023-2024 Leadership Development Series - It's a Wrap!
Photo by Martina Kohlus.

After an exciting seven months, we wrapped up our sixth year of the Leadership Development Series, providing high-quality, continuing education opportunities for our volunteer leaders. Thank you to all participants and presenters who joined us.


The Leadership Development Series is a series of free and standalone seminars that cover a wide variety of leadership topics. Current and aspiring volunteer leaders and instructors are encouraged to attend and expand their outdoor leadership skillset. 

The Leadership Development Series runs October through April each year. The seminars are primarily held online, and occasionally at one of our branches. The next season of Leadership Development Series will begin in October 2024.

Leadership Development Series Engagement BY The NUMBERS

This year's Leadership Development Series continued to grow. Throughout the year we saw:

  • 460 total unique attendees
  • 32 sessions, facilitated by 19 presenters
  • 7 New presenters from Washington and beyond
  • 12 returning presenters


This year, the Leadership Development Series presentations were organized into five categories:

  • Equity, & Inclusion (15 sessions)
  • Education & Instruction (5 sessions)
  • Group Facilitation & Mentorship (4 sessions)
  • Risk Management with (7 sessions)
  • Continuing Education with (1 session)

Many presenters agreed to have their presentations recorded. You can find available recordings and a list of past presentations on our Mountaineers Leadership Development page.



We wrapped up in April with our largest group yet! We had more than 90 participants join us for Dealing with Challenging Participant Behaviors: Coaching Individuals Toward Positive Change  with Dr. Laura Thompson on April 17, 2024. 

Throughout the year, most presentations were offered remotely, allowing us to serve a broader range of members. The sessions were well-received by volunteers, and participants shared their appreciation for the excellent learning environment fostered in each session. 

  • "I loved Bam's direct approach and thought-provoking questions. I appreciate that they took the time to dig deep and thoroughly answer people's questions rather than stick to a strict agenda. I've listened to other presentations on this subject, and this was the best I have ever heard. I really appreciated that this was more than a checklist of "do's and don'ts." - For LGBTQIA2S+ Stories: Understanding Pronouns, Gender, and Sexuality in the Outdoors by Bam Mendiola on October 24, 2023
  • "Rumi incorporated a lot of different engaging techniques. She was friendly and upbeat. It didn't seem like a dry lecture. I enjoyed the breakout rooms. Also, I appreciate all the different practical and creative ideas to incorporate in my leadership techniques." - For Making Risk Management Tangible for Trip Leaders Using Cross-Industry Adaptations by Rumi Kodama on November 9, 2023
  • “The content was excellent. It was a good experience and helped me realize I was doing pretty well in designing courses. It has some good ideas on what to think about for the next one and maybe a different way of presenting information so students knew the expectations of the course.” - The Big 3: Planning For, Assessing, and Implementing Effective Instruction by Ben Brown on January 10, 2024
  • "Thought it was a great session. Would like to see more courses like this one... Teamwork, managing conflict, active listening and reflecting, building an inclusive culture - these are essential outdoor skills if you want to have fun and stay safe. And it's important to recognize what existing experiences people bring to activities." - For How Much Longer? Exploring the Journey toward Racial Equity and Inclusion in Nature by Kriste Peoples on February 16, 2024
  • "It made me think about how to accomplish DEI in the outdoor community. How can we encourage people to participate; what barriers are there for participation? Do they need a bike, or a backpack, or appropriate clothing? How do we make it fun, so people want to come back and invite others?" - For Why Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Parks, Recreation, and Outdoor Spaces Matters by Dr. Todd Davis on February 28, 2024
  • “I always love taking leadership courses with The Mountaineers. Picking up tips and tricks to have a great outdoor experience is very rewarding." - Use Your Outside Voice: Lessons From Nature On Speaking Up by Angie Marie on March 19, 2024

If you have any questions, comments, or additional feedback about the Leadership Development Series, please contact Michelle Song.


Do you have an idea for a presentation topic or know a possible presenter for the 2024-2025 Leadership Development Series - we want to hear from you! Please submit your proposal or presenter nominations to Michelle Song.


Our Leadership Development Series is only made possible through the generous support of our organization’s charitable donors. If you’re inspired to support our programming and wish to contribute, please consider making a donation to The Mountaineers.

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