Honoring Georgia’s Trail Women

campfiregirlsIn honor of Women’s History month in March and international women’s day TODAY, we offer a list of Georgia women trailblazers leading the way and paving a positive path for a world-class trail system here. Now in its 36th year, Women’s History month’s 2016 theme is “Working to Form a More Perfect Union: Honoring Women in Public Service and Government”. We’ve come a long way since the days of Camp Fire Girls.

The Georgia Trail Summit is grateful for these female trail pioneers:

  • Amanda Clay – Trail patrol officer for Alpharetta Public Safety and leader of volunteer patrol model
  • Andrea Greco, senior project manager & trail builder, Pond & Company
  • Becky Kelley – former leader at DeKalb County’s parks and recreation, and currently director of Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites.
  • Bobbie Byers – outreach champion for Chattahoochee Trail Horse Association creating trail clean up days and major events for equestrians.
  • Camilla Warren – USA EPA Region 4 director dedicated to cleaning up brownfields and incorporating new greenways at those reclaimed sites.
  • Carla Bamatraf, Trail designer and planner at J. R. Wilburn and Associates
  • Charlotte Gillis  newly retired National Park Service/ Rivers, Trails & Conservation Assistance Program manager who has fostered trail efforts for many years across Georgia.
  • Denise Starling – director of Livable Buckhead spearheading the effort to build the quickly growing PATH400 trail.
  • Erica Studdard – executive director of the Carrollton Greenbelt and a great public private partnership (P3) example.
  • Grandma Gatewood  the oldest and first female Appalachian Trail thru-hiker whose legend is preserved in the book and film Grandma Gatewood: Trail Magic.
  • Greta deMayo, principal owner, KAIZEN Collaborative
  • Gwyneth Moody – outreach champion for Georgia River Network developing water trails across the state.
  • Jackie Tyson – is the founder of Bike Alpharetta, a non-profit dedicated to promoting fun and safe cycling in the area. Jackie has helped build trails for RAMBO, find funding for Mt. Adams trail, and worked with the city to approve the first-ever City Bike Routes.
  • Jo Hickson – a dedicated trail champion, and director of Coastal Georgia Greenway who works across the south advocating for trail legislation.
  • Julie Smith – bicycle shop owner in Rome and co-founder of trail advocacy group TRED.
  • Katelyn DiGioia, state bicycle and pedestrian coordinator, Georgia Department of Transportation
  • Kelly Pack – Rails-to-Trails Conservancy director of development providing assistance to Georgia and several states not served by regional trail chapters.
  • Laura Richards – founder and Chair of the Carrollton Greenbelt
  • Lisa Frank – PR writer and trail champion at Frank Relations
  • Liz Cole, senior project manager, Greenberg Farrow
  • Marcie Moore, trail and greenway planner, Gwinnett County
  • Mera Cardenas – director of Arabia Mountain National Heritage Area Alliance who leads #AMP –  a new branding effort to connect a network of trails renamed Arabia Mountain Path.
  • Nan Dragonfly Reisinger – oldest living female thru-hiker of the Appalachian Trail.
  • Renee Gable – planning commissioner and Greenprints Alliance trail advocate.
  • Rue Mapp – CEO of Outdoor Afro, leading people of color back to nature.
  • Sally Jewell – Department of Interior Secretary whose work resulted in more national parks protected and a Kid in Every Park program.
  • Sally Sears – Atlanta TV journalist turned executive director of South Fork Conservancy, leading the effort to protect creeks and watersheds.
  • Tonya Bechtler – outreach manager of impressive amenities at Yellow River Water Trail.
  • Tracie Sanchez – grassroots organizer of the Georgia Trail Summit and future statewide trail resource Georgia Trails Alliance.

Who are we missing?  Drop us a line if you know other Georgia women forging new paths for building trails in Georgia.  We’ll keep growing this list.

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