Ron Rash, Executive Director
Start Date: 1995
Ron joined Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers after working for Ascendigo Autism Services as an Interim Executive Director and then the Adventures Director. Ron was past owner for Aspen Alpine Guides, and was a senior instructor for the National Outdoor Leadership School.
Working for a non-profit organization dedicated to public lands stewardship, conservation, and restoration is exciting and extremely rewarding. The mission of engaging volunteers for restoration projects develops a sense of community for everyone involved. Ron has volunteered for over 20 years with Mountain Rescue Aspen that also engages individuals in the community for the benefit of others. The Young Stewards Initiative is another part of Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers that offers experiential educational opportunities for valley youths from Aspen to Parachute. Teaching young ones the importance of conservation and public stewardship, plus having fun in the process. Ron's work with the National Outdoor Leadership School will prove invaluable in expanding the Young Stewards Initiative in our area schools.
Olivia Deihs, Program Manager
Start Date: 2018
Olivia is excited to combine her work and passion for the outdoors in her position. Her love for public lands began as a child when she spent winters snowboarding in Crested Butte and summers on family road trips exploring the US. After completing a Bachelor's degree in Environmental Science from Norther Illinois University, she traveled west and began her career leading conservation crews in Utah's canyon country. Olivia loves working with volunteers and facilitating community engagement through conservation activities.
Elizabeth Bailey, Youth Coordinator
Start Date: 2016
Lizz joins Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers from Catalina Island, where she began her environmental education experience three years ago. Her experiences teaching students both in and out of the classroom have shaped her teaching philosophy to include the concepts of stewardship for protected lands through conservation work that also utilizes recreation as an important tool to interact with the landscape. Prior to the Conservancy, she was part of AmeriCorps NCCC where she first learned about trail work and native plant conservation. Her love for the outdoors began in her mother's garden, grew through trips to the Jersey shore, and bloomed through a 10-week camping adventure with AmeriCorps. She is excited to explore the mountains, having only heard rumor of the mysterious beauty of the Colorado River before accepting her position at RFOV. Originally from New Jersey, she is a graduate from Montclair State University, and is looking forward to expanding the youth programs of RFOV.
Ben Sherman, Assistant Youth Coordinator
Start Date: 2018
Ben brings versatile education experience to Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers, having taught outdoor and environmental education with several organizations around the country. Most recently he worked as an Educator and Naturalist with the Aspen Center for Environmental Studies, where he taught all ages about the unique nature and history of the upper Roaring Fork Valley. In the past Ben worked for Outward Bound, taught at a popular Minnesota nature center and studied endangered bats throughout California. A Tufts University graduate, he was raised in Minnesota, where he grew up hiking, skiing, canoeing and enjoying time outdoors. Ben is excited to help students from Parachute to Aspen connect to public lands and make lasting and meaningful improvements to the area's trails.
Shea Courtney, Marketing & Outreach Coordinator
Start Date: 2017
Shea grew up in Carbondale. Sparked by environmental activism at 8 years old when a development in town pushed out wildlife, she dedicated her younger years to writing letters to the editor and handing out fliers to her classmates about animal habitats and sustainability. Shea has always had a connection to the great outdoors and travel, which is the motivation to adventure to new places and has allowed her to explore much of Western Colorado, the USA, and Europe. She enjoys spontaneous trips, hiking and backpacking, and her desire to care for the environment, as well as educate the public is what brought her to RFOV.
Carl Nelson, Seasonal Field Coordinator
Start Date: 2014
Carl Nelson brings 10 years of outdoor experience to his new role as seasonal Field Coordinator, having worked on outdoor projects in the mountain West. He served in supervisory capacities on projects for the U.S. Geological Survey, Colorado Division of Wildlife, and the Forest Service, earned a B.A. in Anthropology from Western State College in Gunnison, and completed a CMC (Leadville) Outdoor Semester in the Rockies. An avid hiker and climber, Carl was born in the Boulder area, and relocated to the Valley from Durango.
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