Ambassador Program

  Holly Mandarich

Would you like to join us as we empower all to enjoy, share, and preserve the hiking experience? Learn more about our NextGen Trail Leader and Ambassador programs.

Two Ways Individuals Can Partner With American Hiking Society

  Clint McKoy

NextGen Trail Leaders are rising stars in the outdoor community and the voice of young hikers who take part in a yearlong program of advocacy and stewardship to protect public lands.

Each year American Hiking brings together rising stars in the outdoor community from all walks of life and across the country. Through American Hiking, NextGen Trail Leaders are the voice of young hikers and speak out to elected officials and the public on the need to protect public lands for all to enjoy and to expand and preserve trail access. Over the course of the year, NextGen Trail Leaders share their passions to advocate for public lands and trails and inspire other young hikers to get out and experience what the trails have to offer.

Coming Late Fall 2021

Bam Mendiola

NextGen Stories

2020 NextGen graphic overlay on a glacial mountain skyline

Third Class of American Hiking Society’s NextGen Trail Leaders Announced

American Hiking Society is pleased to announce the third class of NextGen Trail Leaders, bringing together rising stars in the outdoor community from across the country. Through American Hiking Society,…

NextGen Trail Leader 2021 graphic over a cloudy sunset and evergreen forest

Apply Now to Be a NextGen Trail Leader

Apply to Be a 2021 NextGen Trail Leader American Hiking Society (AHS) invites applications for its fourth class of NextGen Trail Leaders. With the goal to welcome all into the…

“Does anything I do even matter?”- A NextGen Trail Leader recounts their first advocacy experience.

“Does anything I do even matter? Even as I educate community members and participate in service projects at trailheads in my own community, can I actually change things? Do my elected officials truly hear my emails, phone calls, and petitions?” These questions have been stirring in my mind for years as I have tried to be more active in advocacy for policies that protect the wild places I love.

Reality Check: National Public Lands Advocacy

I learned a lot about federal politics in just a few short days, and while I’m still trying to figure out what it means to me, I think that it’s important to keep perspective. That said, I’m not going to stop dreaming – about ways to improve trails and my community today, and about ways to advocate for change in the future.

Hike the Hill® 2019 Wraps-up with Senate Passage of Public Lands Package, including LWCF

Hike the Hill® 2019 Wraps-up with Senate Passage of Public Lands Package, including LWCF Photographer’s Name   A whirlwind Hike the Hill® just concluded with major victories and breakthroughs on legislation…

Introducing the 2019 NextGen Trail Leaders

American Hiking Launches 2019 NextGen Trail Leaders The second class of AHS NextGen Trail Leaders brings together rising stars in the outdoor community from all walks of life and across…

Meet the 2021 NextGen Trail Leaders

   Kaci Stringer
Satya Akquia takes a selfie during a hike. Satya wears a pack, buff, and baseball style hat with a lake in the distant background

Satya Akquia

Justin Tucker is geared up with a warm hat, jacket, and backpack for a wintery portrait with snow and bare trees in the background.

Justin Tucker

shira ungar smiles for an outdoor portrait wearing a bright yellow hat and black jacket in front a forest overlook

Shira Ungar

Irene Ogeto smiles for outdoor portrait in a white jacket and yellow cap with a lake in the background

Irene Ogeto

Jeremiah Su smiles for an outdoor portrait in a baseball cap with a forested hillside in the background

Jeremiah Su


American Hiking Society Ambassadors

   Shawnte Salabert

Hiking experts, leaders, content creators, and most importantly passionate advocates of the hiking experience.

AHS Ambassadors:

  • Represent American Hiking Society as a voice for hiking and public lands across social media and AHS communications.
  • Provide content and storytelling for the AHS Blog and social media channels.
  • Receive advocacy and communications resources to be effective advocates and leaders.
  • Join or support annual National Trails Day® events in their local areas in June as a host or participant.
  • Have the opportunity to participate in an American Hiking Volunteer Vacation stewardship trip.
  • Participate in other AHS advocacy campaigns, programs, and activities.

AHS Provides Ambassadors:

  • 1-year Hiker membership to AHS (includes a 1 year subscription to BACKPACKER magazine).
  • Discounted registration for an American Hiking Volunteer Vacation trip.
  • Networking opportunities with leaders and other professionals in the outdoor industry.
  • Swag and gear from AHS and corporate sponsors.

AHS Ambassador Applicants should be:

  • Passionate about outdoor advocacy, hiking, and stewardship.
  • Excellent, dynamic communicators.
  • Available to engage regularly throughout the year on social media and AHS communications on efforts to protect public lands, hiking, and diversity in the outdoors.

Meet the AHS Ambassadors

Liz Thomas

Carolyn Hartfield

Hiker/Adventure Leader/Speaker

Michael Lanza

Michael Lanza


Bob and Martha Manning cropped

Bob and Martha Manning



Jennifer Pharr Davis



Liz Thomas