Jane Arbuckle (she/her)
Director of Stewardship
Maine Coast Heritage Trust
Jane serves as the Director of Stewardship at Maine Coast Heritage Trust, a statewide conservation organization. The Stewardship Team manages over 160 Preserves, all of which are open to the public, and over 320 conservation easements along the coast. Jane has many years of experience in the Maine conservation world, and is currently Chair of the Recreational Trails Program Committee, and on the TerraFirma Members Committee which helps provide legal defense insurance for land trusts all over the country. Jane loves to hike, ski, swim, bike, paddle, garden --- just about anything outdoors. And spends as much time as she can at her camp in East Penobscot Bay.
David Berez (he/him)
Outdoor Marketing Manager
Maine Sport Outfitters
David Berez returns to the outdoor industry after a brief thirty year detour as a independent filmmaker and editor much of it spent in the outdoors. After a career cutting hundreds of programs from documentaries to features, David joined Maine Sport Outfitters in the spring of this year to help build its outdoor programming and adventure travel business. David is also a board member of the LifeFlight Foundation where he assists with communications and outreach. David resides in Camden with his wife, three daughters and son when he isn’t out paddling, hiking, or fly fishing in places afar.
Kristina Cannon (she/her)
President & CEO
Main Street Skowhegan
As the president and CEO of Main Street Skowhegan (MSS), Kristina Cannon is the central coordinator of the organization’s strategic projects. She spends much of her time managing and fundraising for the Skowhegan River Park, a community development initiative to construct a river park for paddling, surfing, and tubing in Skowhegan’s downtown river gorge as well as a major trail network and riverfront promenade. Kristina was named a 2019 Mainebiz Next List honoree, recognizing dynamic individuals who are changing Maine's economy and making a significant impact in their industry. Under her leadership, MSS was awarded the 2019 Governor’s Conference on Tourism Award for Marketing & Promotion for the organization’s work to promote the region during the 2018 Skowhegan Moose Festival. Kristina has 15 years of experience in the marketing communications field, having worked at a Boston advertising agency and in the communications office at Colby College.
Andy Cutko (he/him)
Maine Bureau of Parks and Lands
Andy Cutko is the Director of the Maine Bureau of Parks and Lands, which manages 700,000+ acres of Maine State Parks and Public Reserve lands for multiple uses. Andy’s 35-year conservation career includes positions in the private, non-profit, and public sectors. As an avid outdoor enthusiast (hiking, skiing, camping, fishing, kayaking, you name it!), Andy is passionate about conserving Maine’s natural heritage and providing outdoor recreation opportunities for Mainers and visitors alike. Andy lives with his family in Bowdoinham near the shores of Merrymeeting Bay.
Ryan Fecteau (he/him)
Senior Officer of Policy and Planning
Prior to joining Avesta Housing, Ryan served in the Governor's Office of Policy Innovation and the Future in 2023 and as Speaker of the Maine House Representatives from 2020 to 2022. He was, at the time, the youngest presiding officer in the nation and the first openly gay speaker in Maine's history. Ryan's primary legislative achievements included the creation of a state tax incentive for affordable housing, instituting housing-friendly zoning and land use regulations, investing in vocational and trade schools, implementing a child care worker wage stipend, and expanding dental coverage to over 200,000 Mainers. Ryan graduated from The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. in 2014. He resides in his hometown of Biddeford with his partner and two doodles Pancake and Jax.
Enock Glidden (he/him)
Maine Trail Finder
Growing up in Patten Maine, a small town in northern Maine as a child born with Spina Bifida, Enock had to learn to do things differently than others but with the use of adaptive equipment and help from friends and family, he has had a very full life. Enock resides in Bethel Maine, and is an avid skier, rock climber, and hiker and participates in many other sports. These sports include tennis, basketball, paragliding, and skydiving. Through an internship related to his studies in computer science, he was able to travel across the United States and visit some of our most cherished outdoor spaces including many national parks. He culminated his internship experience in California with a 5-day ascent of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park. He is now on a mission to get people of all abilities outdoors in the state of Maine. Through his work, he is showcasing all of the amazing outdoor spaces available to people while also helping to improve access.
Naturally curious, Maura is a critical thinker, excelling at balancing quantitative and qualitative skills to provide contextualized data findings that recognize lived experiences. Maura’s passion for economic development originates from her Mon Valley, Pennsylvania roots. Maura is particularly interested in serving as a steward for postindustrial places finding their place and power in twenty-first-century economics. By centering project purpose and community engagement, Maura communicates and maps data so it can be used, rather than sit on a shelf. Maura’s previous experience is centered around Main Street management, community wealth building, and affordable housing. Maura holds a Master of Science in public policy and management from Carnegie Mellon University.
Matthew Ketchum (he/him)
Juggling all creative titles: copywriter, creative director, brand strategist, mentor, hype man - you name it, Matthew does it. He has mastered the art of pushing creative boundaries while still utilizing logic, which puts him in demand by everyone in the agency. When Matthew isn’t running between meetings, he’s running disgustingly long distances to allegedly relax (jury is out).
Emily MacCabe (she/her)
Director of Public Information and Education
Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife
As Director of Public Information and Education at Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, Emily works to provide innovative solutions to increase outdoor participation, promote responsible use of Maine’s natural resources, and connect with the public to gain their support and trust. Emily has worked at MDIFW for nearly 20 years. Prior to her current role, she served as the Department Outreach Coordinator and later as the Marketing Supervisor. As an active outdoor enthusiast, Emily has dedicated her career to connecting others to the Maine outdoors.
Ponch Membreño (he/him)
Ponch Membreño started his career in the outdoors as an outdoor educator and wilderness trip leader. He later applied those leadership experiences to work first in nonprofits and later in senior management for multiple brands in the outdoor industry. He has been the Wilderness Trip Director at Merrowvista and a Senior Leader at Toad&Co and Intrinsic Provisions - an outdoor lifestyle shop that connects consumers to socially conscious and sustainable brands. He recently joined the team at Mainers, a handwear company cutting and sewing all their mitts and gloves in Trenton, ME. Ponch moved to Maine in 1985 to attend Colby College and currently resides on Peaks Island, his “rooted place.” He is known as an innovative leader, strategic connector, and mentor. He is on the board of the Chewonki Foundation, Portland Parks Conservancy, and Maine Outdoor Brands. He is inspired by nonprofits and companies that can find success while doing good.
Jennifer Neptune (she/her)
Jennifer Neptune is an artist, writer, curator, and guide. A member of the Penobscot Nation, she has worked to revive and pass on traditional cultural art forms such as ash and sweetgrass basketry, traditional styles of beadwork and silk ribbon appliqué. Her work has won awards at National Native American art markets throughout the United States. Jennifer runs the Penobscot Nation Museum which is currently getting ready to move in to a new, larger location. As a registered Maine Guide she works with the Penobscot Nation Cultural Tourism Program to connect visitors to the rivers, history and culture of the Penobscot Nation.
Carolann Ouellette (she/her)
Director, Office of Outdoor Recreation
In 2018 Carolann returned to the Maine Department of Economic & Community Development to serve as the first Director of the newly created Office of Outdoor Recreation. Her prior role at DECD was as Director of the Maine Office of Tourism from 2010-2016. A graduate of Cornell University's School of Hotel Administration, she has a strong background in hospitality and outdoor recreation having been the Executive Director of Maine Huts & Trails, chef/owner of an award-winning Maine restaurant, former whitewater guide/operations manager at New England Outdoor Center, and lodging manager at Sugarloaf Resort. In 2015, she was named by Maine Magazine as one of “50 Mainers Boldly Leading Our State.” Carolann currently serves in board or advisory member capacity on the Maine Sports Commission, Maine Gear Share, Maine Trails Coalition, USM Muskie School of Public Service, UMaine Outdoor Leadership Program and Skowhegan Savings Bank. She is a ski, snowmobile, snowshoe, hike and paddle enthusiast, working on her fishing and hunting skills, and loves the exploration and discovery of adventure travel. The focus of the Maine Office of Outdoor Recreation is to leverage Maine’s assets and outdoor recreation heritage to grow the outdoor recreation economy and build Maine’s outdoor recreation brand as part of a coordinated effort with partners from the public and private sectors. The Office joined the Confluence of States in October 2019.
Ray Ruby (he/him)
Maine Cancer Foundation
Alejandro Strong (he/him)
For over two decades I have been exploring Maine’s rivers and forests as well as studying and teaching philosophy. I worked for Hurricane Island Outward Bound leading canoeing and backpacking courses as well as training staff in whitewater paddling and safety. I founded Packraft Maine to share the As a latino outdoor professional, I am interested in making the outdoor spaces I love a welcome place for more people, while also celebrating and amplifying the diverse voices that are already a part of outdoor spaces.
Michael Wejchert (he/him)
Mountain Rescue Service
Michael Wejchert is an award-winning outdoor writer and has climbed ice, rock, and alpine routes all over the world. He is the current chair of New Hampshire's elite Mountain Rescue Service, the team responsible for carrying out winter and technical rescues in New Hampshire and surrounding states.
Scott Bahr (he/him)
Cairn Consulting Group
Scott Bahr has over 30 years of market research and analytical experience which has included spearheading the research that is an integral part of the strategic planning efforts across a variety of sectors and industries. In particular he has been the research partner with KOA (Kampgrounds of America, Inc.) for 20 years, including the North American Camping and Outdoor Hospitality Report the past nine years. As president of Cairn Consulting Group, he has also worked with RV manufacturers, suppliers, dealers, and associations, as well as outdoor products retailers in their marketing and branding efforts, strategic planning, customer experience, corporate social responsibility, services/amenities and employee development. His work has also included product development, public opinion polling, public health, healthcare, and the broader hospitality category.
Attessa Bradley (she/her)
Head of Marketing
Attessa has been a marketer for over twenty years and has a proven track record of building engaging, mission-forward brands and scaling businesses. She has been in the organic food industry for the majority of her career, driving growth at companies like Stonyfield and Orgain. She is classically trained both through her MBA as well as through her experience at Church & Dwight, a traditional CPG company based in Princeton NJ.She has been with Grandy for 11 months.
Bernstein Shur/Maine Professional Guides Association/Maine Snowmobile Association
James has been a leading voice in Maine’s outdoor community for more than 15 years. As an advocate, he has represented a range of state and national interests before the Maine Legislature and various state agencies, including private landowners, conservation nonprofits, hunters, trappers and motorized and non-motorized recreation. Currently, James represents the Maine Professional Guides Association, Maine Trappers Association, and Maine Snowmobile Association and is co-chair of Bernstein Shur’s Government and Public Affairs Practice Group. In 2014, James successfully led the NO on 1, Save Maine’s Bear Hunt campaign to a victory that protected Maine’s bear management programs. James has served twice on the State’s landowner relations advisory board as a representative of statewide traditional sportsmen and is a former chair of the Sportsmen Forest Landowner Alliance. Recently he completed a term as a State Commissioner on the Maine Indian Tribal State Commission.
William Cyr (he/him)
Chief Operating Officer
LifeFlight of Maine
Bill grew up in Connecticut and moved to Boston to attend nursing school. Bill has worked in the air medical transport industry for over 30 years starting at Umass LifeFlight in Worcester, MA, then on to Boston Medflight as the Chief Operations Manager and in Colorado at Children’s Hospital Colorado as the Program Director. He is now the Chief Operating Officer for LifeFlight of Maine. Bill also sits on the Board of Directors for the Air and Surface Transport Nurses Association as well as the Board of Directors of MaineEMS. Bill has a Master’s degree in Healthcare Management and Informatics from the University of Massachusetts and a Bachelor’s in Nursing from Northeastern University. Bill and his wife reside in Belmont Maine and have 3 grown daughters. He has always loved Maine and his dream of retiring to Maine will be fulfilled in the future.
Emily Foster (she/her)
Director of People and Planet Impact
Emily is the Director of People and Planet Impact at Burton, a global snowboarding company and a certified B Corporation. She leads a team that manages the environmental sustainability and social responsibility of Burton's products, supply chain, and operations - covering climate advocacy, decarbonization, circularity, chemicals management, and responsible sourcing. Prior to Burton, Emily had a career in foreign aid, managing U.S. government-funded economic growth projects in East Africa and designing corporate social responsibility investments for multinational corporations in emerging markets. Emily holds an MBA in Sustainable Innovation from the University of Vermont and a BA in International Development Economics from the George Washington University.
Josh Hastings (he/him)
Camden Hills State Park
Josh Hastings was born in Alabama and received his undergraduate degree in Wildlife Ecology from Auburn University. While in school, he worked at a raptor rehabilitation facility. He loves photography and birding. This is his second season at Camden Hills State Park. As a seasonal park ranger, he spends his winters in a boatyard refinishing boats.
Kevin Kayne (he/him)
Partner and Creative Director
Jenny Kordick (she/her)
Maine Outdoor Brands
Jenny took the helm of MOB in 2019, bringing over a decade of experience working with outdoor-focused non-profit organizations in government and public relations, strategy and organizing. Her work as executive director allows her to lead a powerful and expanding network of businesses united around a clear objective: to create a thriving local outdoor recreation economy. Prior to working at MOB, she served at The Wilderness Society in Washington, D.C. and in Maine. There she directed advocacy campaigns and led coalitions to protect outdoor areas across the country and take meaningful action on climate change. She serves on the board of Maine GearShare and the Outdoor Industry Association’s Recreation Advisory Council. She takes the ferry to Portland from her home on Peaks Island in Casco Bay where she lives with her husband and son pursuing adventures both big and small.
Kristopher MacCabe (he/him)
Game Warden Corporal
Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife
As Game Warden Corporal at Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, Kris focuses on landowner relations and helps manage the Outdoor Partners Program providing support to Maine’s private landowners and offering resources for outdoor enthusiasts to be responsible when recreating on private land. Kris has been a Game Warden at MDIFW for over 15 years. Prior to his current role he served as a District Game Warden and K9 Handler in Franklin County. Growing up in Maine, Kris has always held a love for the outdoors whether he was hunting, fishing, or out on recreational vehicles. His enthusiasm for the outdoors inspired him to want to help protect Maine’s resources for future generations.
Marshall Merriam (he/him)
Marshall is the founder of Uphill Advisory, a Scarborough, Maine-based advisory firm that guides product brands and retailers of all sizes with profitable strategies for growth. Previously, he spent decades in executive leadership roles at Recreational Equipment, Incorporated (REI) and Eastern Mountain Sports (EMS). As a product merchandising leader, Marshall has advocated for sustainable product models, partnered with brands on circular innovations, and spoken at Outdoor Industry Association climate action events.
Nyamuon "Moon" Nguany (she/her)
Maine Association for New Americans
In Portland, Moon works as the Wellness program manager where she oversees Peer counseling services for MANA, the Maine Association for New Americans. In this position, she helps asylum seekers, especially children, who need pathways to mental health services and safe spaces where they can speak about past and present traumas. She recently developed an outdoor program for immigrant youth called #weoutside. Through this program immigrant youth are able to engage and enjoy the outdoors of Maine without the barriers or transportation, representation or lack of preparation.
Gabe Perkins (he/him)
Inland Woods + Trails
Gabe grew up in Bethel, ME. In 2011, Gabe started as a founding board member of Inland Woods + Trails and since 2014, has served as the Executive Director. In that time, he has led the organizations efforts to steward and develop 85 miles of trails at 21 locations in nine communities throughout Oxford County. Gabe holds a degree in Environmental Policy and Planning from the University of Maine at Farmington. He serves as co-coordinator of the Maine Trails Coalition, is a Senior Fellow in the Environmental Leadership Program, and an alumnus of the Community Practitioners Network. He can sometimes be found patiently renovating his grandparents’ old home on in Bethel with his wife, Jessie, dogs Champ, Mike, and cat, Indiana Jones.
Korah Soll (she/her)
Rural Aspirations Project
Korah grew up on the outskirts of a Maine milltown, daughter to a community activator and a small business owner. After graduating from Unity College, Korah spent 16 years designing/directing alternative programs across three Maine districts. She worked with hundreds of students to strengthen aspirations and connection, helping them actualize a bright future for themselves in their communities. In 2013, she rallied a group of veteran educators to start Rural Aspirations, an organization focused solely on expanding educational opportunities in rural schools. Since then, she and her colleagues have worked with teachers, administrators and community leaders from over 40 districts to collaboratively design programs and curricula that connect students with their communities. In 2010, she received the MDOE Commissioner's Award for her work with at-risk students. She was a semi-finalist for the Hancock County Teacher of the Year in 2012, and received an M.Ed. Leadership degree in 2014.
Mark Thibadeau (he/him)
I have led product design and development teams for almost 20 years in the outdoor industry. For the past 3 years I have been working with NEMO equipment on our Endless Promise initiative, a way to keep gear out of the landfill. As a maker of equipment with a background in Industrial Design, I am excited to be a part of the conversation about how to make more with less.
Mid-Coast School of Technology Outdoor Leadership Program
A 2-year Outdoor Leadership program that provides the basic training and skills necessary to students that are interested in pursuing post-secondary education and/or employment in the many professions that relate to the outdoors.
Scarlet Batchelor (she/her)
Chief Growth Officer
Appalachian Mountain Club
Scarlet believes in the power of positive change through recreation and the outdoors. She’s passionate about innovation, analysis, and creativity. Scarlet is a seasoned marketer, starting her career at Digitas then moving to mission-driven big brands like Ocean Spray and New Balance to Startups like Hydrow and FEED. Scarlet recently joined AMC and is thrilled to support the mission of getting more people outdoors. She lives in Cambridge, MA with her husband, three kids, and very shy rescue dog.
Erik Brooks (he/him)
Camden Hills State Park
Erik is the new Trails Supervisor for Camden Hills State Park. He grew up in the coastal town of Harpswell, though he has always found greater joy in the mountains than the sea. His family would sometimes hike in the Camden Hills, and he began visiting frequently in high school to rock climb here. After obtaining a bachelor's degree in Environmental Studies at Middlebury College in Vermont, Erik tried guiding, teaching, and farming, then settled into a career of carpentry. A few years after moving to Camden (and now Lincolnville) he realized that he really has more passion for the maintenance of trails and wanted to return to the kind of work he did on trail crew during the summers of his college years, but with more emphasis on working locally and building community to better conserve our public lands into the future.
Angela Cowger (she/her)
Extended Learning Opportunity (ELO) Coordinator
East Grand School
Angela is the Extended Learning Opportunity (ELO) Coordinator at East Grand School in Danforth, Maine. The school district recently received an expansion grant for the ELO Program. ELOs are hands-on, credit-bearing experiences outside the traditional classroom, with an emphasis on community-based career exploration. Over the past decade, East Grand has been designing a school-wide Small Business Pathway, connecting Career and Life Readiness, Economics and Guiding Principle standards to each grade level. This program is a final piece of the puzzle. The school has supported high school students with opportunities for paid meaningful work, work readiness skills, and to become connected to the business/work community. ELOs have been able to partner with East Grand’s well established Outdoor Education program and leaders, licensed Maine Guides Tammi Matula and Dave Conley. A native of Maine, Angela, her husband, and three children reside on East Grand Lake in Danforth where they own and operate year-round rental cabins.
Kelly Davis (she/her)
Director of Research
Outdoor Industry Association
Kelly Davis has more than 25 years of experience in Market Research including 11 years as the Director Research for SnowSports Industries America, and 4 years as the Senior Director of Research for the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association. In addition, she has worked with the Cross-Country Ski Areas Association, the Winter Wildlands Alliance, and the Stand-Up Paddle Industry Association. Kelly is a methodologist with innovative leanings, she is always looking for more effective ways to gather and apply insights. Kelly likes to share interesting findings and insights and has been a featured speaker at industry events like the Snow Show. The focus of her work is helping industry stakeholders understand mechanisms that affect their markets. She has helped many brands understand and target participants more effectively, track their customers’ journeys, build clearer views of potential customers, and design products. Kelly has also helped many start-ups to find their footing in a variety of markets and she has helped businesses find their way when times are tough. When Kelly isn’t working, you will most likely find her outdoor skiing, running trail, biking, hiking, longboarding, walking with her dogs, fly fishing, SUPing…this list goes on and on.
Eva Fury (they/them)
Community builder, facilitator, big picture planner, silly face maker, doodler, and cloud watcher. Can throw a great party with limited resources and no time; would rather tell you a funny story. Eva has 8 years of experience as a project manager, professional development trainer, and community organizer for projects and nonprofits focused on racial and gender justice, public health, and redistributing resources. Eva has spent over 20 years playing and coaching competitive ultimate frisbee.
Hallie Herz (they/them)
Hallie is the co-founder of Kindling Collective, a queer-centered outdoor gear library and education center in Portland. They are a canoeing instructor, teacher, outdoor trip leader, goofball, and big dreamer. Hal can teach you how to bake cinnamon buns over coals, write a poem, eat like a dinosaur, or stand on your head in a canoe. They taught middle and high school students for 10 years and is an instructor and trip leader at The Venture Out Project, leading paddling and hiking trips for members of the LGTBQ+ community. Hallie also spent more than 20 summers as a camper, counselor, canoe expedition leader, and wilderness trips director at Camp Wanapitei in Temagami, Ontario. Hallie has planned, supported, and led canoe trips up to 52-days long in Maine, northern Ontario, Quebec, the Northwest Territories, and the Yukon.
Stephen Kasacek (he/him)
Director Trails & Education
Outdoor Sport Institute
Steve Kasacek brings over 10 years of professional consulting experience to the Outdoor Sport Institute team. With an education and foundation in civil engineering focusing on stormwater management and restoration, Steve brings years of low impact design, natural resource protection, and sustainable trail expertise to OSI’s Trail Development initiatives. Steve has worked in over 20 states helping communities navigate complex trail development projects from vision to management. He has assisted with more than 1000 miles of high-quality trails planning and design and has directly managed over 50 miles of trail construction, helping land managers, government agencies, organizations, and communities secure more than ten million dollars in funding for natural surface trail projects. Steve brings his passion for local capacity building to the variety of workshops and trainings he leads for volunteers, land managers, and professionals. He is dedicated to growing local pipelines of leadership to support trail projects big and small.
Kayla Lessard (she/her)
Manager of Partnerships Marketing
Responsible for the management and implementation of L.L.Bean’s partnership portfolio - focused on supporting the company’s brand and purpose work.
Zachary McCarthy (he/him)
Founder + Executive Director
Inclusive Ski Touring
Zach McCarthy, born in Saco, Maine, is a dynamic individual on a mission to create more inclusive and accessible outdoor recreation opportunities. With a degree in Economics from the University of Southern Maine, Zach is the Founder and Executive Director of Inclusive Ski Touring and the previous Marketing Director at Mt. Abram Family Resort. In addition, he is one of the founding Board Members for the new non-profit organization Uphill New England. His approach to partnership development and programming has made outdoor adventures more financially accessible, while boosting public relations and business revenues. Outside of his professional endeavors, Zach embodies the spirit of adventure finding fulfillment, inspiration and drive through backcountry skiing, trail running, biking, and photography. Zach's future aspirations include expanding Inclusive Ski Touring and developing alternative nationwide outdoor accessibility initiatives. Zach’s story demonstrates his unwavering commitment to make the outdoors an inclusive playground for all. He has been the Wilderness Trip Director at Merrowvista and a Senior Leader at Toad&Co and Intrinsic Provisions - an outdoor lifestyle shop that connects consumers to socially conscious and sustainable brands. He recently joined the team at Mainers, a handwear company cutting and sewing all their mitts and gloves in Trenton, ME. Ponch moved to Maine in 1985 to attend Colby College and currently resides on Peaks Island, his “rooted place.” He is known as an innovative leader, strategic connector, and mentor. He is on the board of the Chewonki Foundation, Portland Parks Conservancy, and Maine Outdoor Brands. He is inspired by nonprofits and companies that can find success while doing good.
James Merrill (he/him)
Founder & CEO
CEO and Founder of Opolis and StokedPlastics Inc. Creator of award winning patent-pending technology that allows Opolis to make durable eyewear and other upcycled goods out of ocean-found water bottles - StokedPlastic®. Responsible to bringing two award winning products to market; (1) Stokedplastic Sunglasses Collection winner of MOB Innovation and Trailblazer Award, (2) StokedSnow Goggle Collection winner of the Outdoor Retailer Innovation Award (3) Individual Finalist Nomination for the Outdoor Retailer Inspiration Award. Former US Government Contractor specializing in Counter Violent Extremism for 10 years. Environmental activist, avid surfer, snowboarder, adventurer, and motorcycle enthusiast.
Chip Noble (he/him)
Senior Project Manager
Chip Noble is a Senior Product Manager in the Outdoor segment at Garmin, managing the inReach and traditional handheld product lines. In 1997 Chip began working for DeLorme, a Maine-based company, which was acquired by Garmin in 2016. Over the years Chip enjoyed working with users through Tech Support, Quality Assurance, and User Interface Design, before navigating to Product Management. He now helps guide new Garmin inReach and traditional products through the development lifecycle – from initial concept to design, development, testing, and on to production and sale. Chip is an avid outdoor person who enjoys solo and family adventures in all four seasons here in the great state of Maine!
Kristy Phinney (she/her)
Senior Director, Client Strategy
In her role as Senior Director of Client Strategy at Rinck Advertising, Kristy Phinney plays a pivotal role in ensuring that the agency consistently exceeds client expectations. Kristy's expertise lies in providing strategic solutions, direction, and resources that empower the Rinck team to achieve clients' business objectives and performance goals. She is known for her collaborative spirit, working closely with the account team and subject matter experts to craft strategic plans and approaches that are not only effective but also innovative. One of Kristy's standout qualities is her deep understanding of consumer needs, which she seamlessly integrates into her role. This unique perspective allows her to develop marketing and creative strategies that cut across various industries, categories, and platforms.
Mish Sommers (she/her)
Mish Sommers founded Happier Outside to inspire and provide opportunities for accessible outdoor experiences to help everyday people step outside in nature and reap the benefits. She facilitates walking experiences, mindfulness and meditation sessions, and the occasional retreat for people in her midcoast Maine community, and has led experiences and expeditions on land and sea in Australia, Baja California, Florida, and Maine for over thirty years. Mish moved to Maine from Australia almost 25 years ago, and now lives with her husband and two teenagers in Lincolnville in a house with seemingly endless projects. In her day job, she helps facilitate strategic transformations for organizations.
Brian Threlkeld (he/him)
Membership & Marketing Director
Maine Outdoor Brands
Having been involved with MOB since the beginning, Brian was hired full time in March of 2021. As a climber, paddler, skier, backpacker, adventure photographer and a nonprofit aficionado, Brian brings valuable experience to connecting and promoting brands. He sits on the advisory board for Baxter State Park and recently joined the board of Rippleffect in hopes of ensuring wild places stay wild and anyone and everyone can access the outdoors. Brian lives in Portland with his wife and stepson and can often be seen frequenting the Fore River Sanctuary in his backyard.
Shay Bellas (she/her)
CEO and Founder
Shay Bellas is an accomplished marketing and sales strategist with over 21 years of industry experience. After leaving law school in 2000, Shay embarked on a unique entrepreneurial journey. She purchased and successfully operated the first women's professional football team in the State of Maine, ultimately selling the team and her solid sales and marketing playbook to other teams in her league. Her entrepreneurial spirit led her to establish 19 Oaks, a strategic sales and marketing agency in Portland, Maine, in 2008. Shay's expertise lies in creating and implementing Strategic Sales and Marketing Playbooks for businesses, helping them exceed their goals and objectives. She became a certified HubSpot partner in 2010, specializing in inbound marketing and sales strategies. Shay's passion lies in helping businesses grow both professionally and financially, building stronger brands and increasing revenue through sales. She is renowned for her ability to incorporate Channel Marketing, establishing solid partnerships that drive long-term sales growth. In her latest venture, NaviTour, a tourism tech company, Shay aims to revolutionize the guiding industry in Maine and beyond. The platform connects travelers with local guides, offering a seamless booking experience, while empowering guides to manage their businesses efficiently. Shay and her team are dedicated to fostering year-round opportunities for guides in Maine, addressing challenges such as the short traditional touring season. Shay Bellas is driven by inspiration and a desire to create innovative solutions in the business world. Her entrepreneurial journey has been marked by her ability to identify needs and openings in the market, leading her to build successful ventures that make a positive impact.
Josh Bubier (he/him)
Sergeant & Statewide Seach and Rescue Coordinator
Maine Warden Service
Sergeant Bubier began his career with the Maine Warden Service in 2008 as a district game warden in Somerset County. In 2009 he joined the Warden Service's incident management team primarily working on planning large scale searches. In 2020 he promoted to Sergeant and took over the role of the State of Maine's Search and Rescue Coordinator. Sergeant Bubier has been involved with the State's largest searches over the last 16 years to include the Appalachian Trail search for Geraldine Largay in 2013. Sergeant Bubier resides in Cornville, Maine with his wife and two daughters. He enjoys hunting, fishing, hiking, skiing and watching his daughters play sports.
Samantha Cuccaro (she/her)
Sam has worked with Toad&Co for 6 years, starting as a part-time sales associate in the Freeport store. Over the last year and a half, she has worked on the development and launch of Toad&Co's resale program, ToadAgain. She now works out of the new Portland location where ToadAgain resides. She splits her time between growing the resale program, inventory management, and all the other miscellaneous tasks that are necessary when running a multi-faceted business. When she's not working, she and her partner are fixing up their little house in the woods of Durham, Maine. She enjoys hanging with her pup, gardening, baking, and cross-country skiing.
Bri Dostie (she/her)
Bri Dostie is founder of Confluence Collective, Artist, Maine Recreation and Fishing Guide, and rural kid who grew up in the Maine woods. She focuses her energy into expanding access + belonging on the water for everybody through fly fishing education and community-building opportunities, interrupting exclusive and extractive cultural norms whenever possible to establish more mutually beneficial and reciprocally determined ways of being. Bri has been fly fishing since she was 15 and drawing birds since she could hold a pencil. She brings 8 years of program design and facilitation experience to riverbanks across the country, and will get distracted by bird song or foraging finds when sharing what she knows. When not on the water or otherwise holding space for others to connect in nature, she works as a freelance illustrator + designer, creating art inspired by nature, queerness, and supporting science communication through educational resource creation and grassroots conservation work.
Ryan Gates (he/him)
Coastal Mountain Land Trust
Ryan oversees Coastal Mountain Land Trust's stewardship program that takes care of 13,000+ acres of conserved land. He focuses on managing large projects like the Round the Mountain Trail and other community relationships. Ryan came to Maine from Connecticut when he chose to attend Unity College. After working in different parts of the state, he settled on the Midcoast in 2004. He worked for Maine Coast Heritage Trust’s Aldermere Farm in Rockport, before he started at the Land Trust in 2018. He and his family are out in the woods or on the water as much as possible.
Amy Hopkins (she/her)
Partner and Creative Founder
Saltwater Mountain Co.
Amy Hopkins is a cold-water dipping enthusiast and guide, born and raised in Maine. With her professional background as a birthing nurse, massage therapist, yoga teacher and wellness studio owner, Amy has since created Saltwater Mountain Co. to inspire, educate and spread her timely mission of empowering women, supporting mental health and building community. "Dip Down To Rise Up!"
Stacey Keefer (she/her)
Maine Marine Trades Association
Stacey is the Executive Director of the Maine Marine Trades Association and has been primarily involved in the marine industry for nearly 30 years. She started as a charter boat cleaner after college and then worked at a boatyard/marina in the midcoast for over 12 years. Growing up in Vermont she started her passion for many outdoor activities and now spends as much time as possible seeking mini adventures mostly in northern, eastern, and coastal Maine. Some of her favorite activities include sailing kitewings on ice, mountain biking, camping, kayaking, bird watching, and nature photography. Her volunteer work includes her local Midcoast Maine NEMBA chapter and seabird conservation for the Audubon Project Puffin Seabird Institute.
Tammi Matula (she/her)
East Grand School
Tammi has been involved in education for over 20 years and has been working to combine her passion for teaching and the outdoors throughout that time. She is currently working for East Grand School, where she teaches Health and PE for PK-12, with an emphasis in outdoor education. She guides extensively for Canoe the Wild in the summer, and has tripped on the Mountain River (NWT), Mistissibi, DePas Bonaventure, Allagash, and St. Croix Rivers. She has also participated in two winter ascents to Mount Katahdin and is passionate about snowboarding and cross country skiing. She has a vision to see the youngest of her students (4 years old!), to the graduating senior, enjoying time in the outdoors and gaining skills. She believes that students need multiple exposures to scenarios that require risk, failure, and skill in order to learn humility, resilience, and self control.
Megan McConville (she/her)
Megan is a community planner with over 15 years of experience tackling tough issues in rural and urban places. At EPR, she works hand in hand with cities and towns to recognize their potential, build consensus around a plan, and identify the policy changes, partnerships, and implementation resources to achieve their goals. Previously, at the U.S. EPA’s Office of Community Revitalization, USDA Rural Development, and the National Association of Development Organizations, Megan oversaw national programs providing critical technical assistance and training and rallying powerful federal resources to address economic distress, neighborhood disinvestment, poverty and inequality, and disaster and climate change impacts. Megan lives in Vermont with her husband and two kids, where she loves running, biking, hiking, cross country skiing, and all other forms of playing outside.
Nicole Muise-Kielkucki (she/her)
As a director at Fourth Economy, Nicole serves as project manager on many of the firm’s strategic planning projects, helping clients access their unique financial, natural, and human capital assets to create robust, sustainable, resilient local economies that increase quality of life for all. With more than ten years of economic development experience, Nicole specializes in designing meaningful community engagement to build a shared understanding and vision for the future. Before joining Fourth Economy, Nicole worked at a regional start-up incubator, where she led social enterprise and impact investing initiatives to support entrepreneurs building triple-bottom-line companies, helping them to assess market opportunities, prove their concept, and test assumptions. She currently serves on the board of the Union Project, a local arts organization and community gathering space.
George O'Keefe (he/him)
Economic Development Director
Town of Rumford
George has served as the Economic Development Director for the Town of Rumford since 2018. In that time the Town has undertaken rebranding, a TV marketing campaign, and supported the completion of the new 63 room Rumford Falls Best Western Plus.
Cassandra Prenn-Vasilakis (she/her)
Government and Community Relations Manager
Cassandra Prenn-Vasilakis began her career in wilderness restoration and political organizing, and has worked as an outdoor guide and educator in California, Minnesota, and Vermont. She currently works in government affairs at Hipcamp, partnering with communities and landowners to fund conservation with outdoor recreation, drive rural economic development, and increase access to the outdoors. Cassandra also serves on the Adirondack Land Trust's Next Generation Council and the Society of Outdoor Recreation Professionals' Policy Committee.
Mike Smith (he/him)
Outdoor Sport Institute
Mike has worked at the intersection of outdoor leadership, recreation, and community development for over 20 years. His technical background includes titles such as raft guide, sea kayak guide, ski coach, backcountry trip leader, whitewater kayak instructor, and bike shop manager. He is a registered Maine Recreational & Sea Kayak Guide, ACA Whitewater Kayak Instructor Trainer, Swiftwater Rescue Instructor, BICP Mountain Bike Instructor, and a Wilderness First Responder. Mike’s passion, however, is in helping people discover the possibilities in themselves and their communities through the outdoors. It’s this focus that has defined his career and lead to the co-founding of the Outdoor Sport Institute in 2016. Mike has spent over 15 years working with non-profits, businesses, and local governments to find creative and sustainable solutions to enhancing human-powered outdoor recreation. A dedicated teacher, Mike brings the lens of learning to all of OSI’s efforts.
Jenny Ward (she/her)
Director of Brand Experience
Appalachian Mountain Club
Jenny is the Director of Brand Experience for the Appalachian Mountain Club. A graduate of the University of Maine and Senior Fellow of the Environmental Leadership Program, she was instrumental in the successful launch of AMC’s Medawisla Lodge & Cabins and led the effort to designate AMC’s Maine Woods as an International Dark Sky Park. She serves on the boards of Destination Moosehead Lake, Moosehead Lake Region Economic Development Corp, Allagash Wilderness Waterway Foundation, Greenville Planning Board, Maine Trails Coalition and is a Piscataquis County Advisor for the Maine Community Foundation. Her numerous volunteer efforts are centered around her love of the people and landscape of the Moosehead region. She is a Registered Maine Guide and in her free time she loves to hike, trail run, cross country ski, and stand under the stars and look up.