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

  Wesley Trimble

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 five early to early-mid career leaders in the outdoor community with a diversity of identities from across the country. American Hiking provides these Leaders with training, mentorship, networking, trail stewardship opportunities, and professional development and gear stipends.  Through this partnership, NextGen Trail Leaders build and refine their advocacy and outdoor leadership experience and skills, speaking out to elected officials, serving as ambassadors to the hiking community, building a nationwide stewardship movement, and championing conservation, equity, and inclusion.

Coming Late 2023

NextGen Stories

A group of trail volunteers smile for the camera in Natchez Trace State Park

Volunteering in Natchez Trace State Park

By 2022 NextGen Trail Leader Aleshea Carriere I packed my bag and loaded the truck. My sister’s rushed voice beckoned from the truck speakers, “you’ll miss your flight if you…

Hike the Hill® — We Go Further as a Community

As an active outdoor volunteer I have seen the amount of maintenance and funding needed to keep trails in top condition and sustainably maintained for many years to come. Championing for more trail funding and protection of our public lands led me to advocacy.

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

Hike The Hill 2021 – Strengthening A New Trail Muscle

By Justin Tucker I’ve come to feel pretty sure of myself whenever I head out on trail. At this point in my life and in my hiking tenure, I’m fully…

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

Hike the Hill 2021 – Showing Up Is The Hardest Part

By Jeremy Su I have normally been someone who refrains from making things political, if I felt like it wasn’t necessary. At times, I found that it was easier to…

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,…

“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.

Meet the 2023 NextGen Trail Leaders

   Kaci Stringer
A hiker stands next to a trailhead sign.

Tamika Graham

A Hiker stands on top of Mt. Whitney holding a Mt. Whitney sign.

Liz Guerrero

A backpacker hikes on a trail in a forest.

Thurman Hogan III

A hiker stands in front of an alpine lake.

Irasema Romero

A hiker stands in Mt Baker Wilderness

Tammy VuPham


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:

  • 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