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Alec griswold - founder & executive director

Alec has spent the past decade working in the outdoor industry and he has turned his focus to engaging communities of color in the outdoor world. Alec is responsible for creating and maintaining program partners and sponsorships. He currently heads the fundraising development committee and works closely with the Board to engage donors and community leaders. Alec attended Dickinson College, where he studied Political Science and played Lacrosse. He went on to the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) and spent several years in Chilean Patagonia. He has been selected to the 2018-2019 cohort of the Emerging Leaders Program at Umass Boston and resides in Charlestown, MA. Alec is a passionate outdoorsman and an advocate for youth mentoring in Massachusetts.

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annie hayes - program coordinator

Annie coordinates outdoor programs for our three partner organizations and provides supplemental help to our senior outdoor instructors. During her time at St. Lawrence University, she studied creative writing and environmental studies, and spent four months living abroad in Australia. Upon graduating in 2016, Annie moved to Nevada where she spent a season working for the Nevada Conservation Corps as a member of a five person trail crew. She then moved to Naches, Washington to work as a Special Uses intern for the U.S. Forest Service, during which time she became certified as a Wildland Firefighter. After moving back to the East Coast in 2017, Annie began working for Elevate Youth and has played a vital role in driving our organization forward.

NICK CHERTAVIAN - LEAD INSTRUCTOR

When Nick was eighteen he attended a semester with the National Outdoor Leadership School, where he developed his skills as an outdoorsman.  He began teaching kids in the outdoors while working for the Mass Audubon Society’s Drumlin Farm location as a teacher-naturalist and trip leader.  Nick discovered a passion for connecting kids to the natural world around them and went on to complete a degree in Outdoor Education at the University of New Hampshire.  Nick honed his skills leading backpacking expeditions with teens in Alaska and went on to return to Mass Audubon as a program coordinator for overnight trips. After returning to Boston Nick took on a new role working with Thompson Island Outward Bound, focusing on hands-on natural science curriculum, challenge course programing, and personal development for Boston Public School students.