About Us

VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY – BOARD MEMBER

TKO is seeking community members to serve on our volunteer board. For a snapshot of the work we are doing, please read the TKO Strategic Plan. If you are interested in helping TKO work towards our goals and objectives, please fill out this interest form to let us know a bit more about yourself and we’ll be in touch!



    TKO’s 2020-2030 Strategic Plan

    Over the course of 2019, TKO underwent an update to our 10-year plan and you can now view the content at the link below. Special thanks to our TKO board, volunteers and staff who helped bring together this powerful document that will help inform our work for the next decade!

    TKO Strategic Plan 2020-2030

    Taking Action to Save Oregon’s Trails

    Our greatest trail building era occurred in the 1930s, when President Roosevelt’s Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) built thousands of miles of trails on public lands across the country.

    The CCC was the first New Deal program created in response to the Great Depression and aimed at helping young men gain working skills and earn a wage during difficult times.

    While the times have changed, volunteers on TKO projects take home a similar sense of satisfaction as those CCC boys experienced in the 1930s. In exchange for muddy clothes, sore muscles and tired hands, our volunteers come away with a strong sense of satisfaction from having done their part to keep a trail alive and, in turn, ensure that future generations can also share the hiking experience. Often, our projects are on trails built by the CCC; in that way, TKO is part of the same legacy.

    The CCC trails marked a turning point in our history, as most of these trails were built expressly for recreation and to give ordinary Americans a way to enjoy our public lands. Since that time, the country has outgrown our legacy trail system, and we see that today at popular trails around Oregon.

    Hikers on the new Wahkeena Trail, 1922
    Hikers on the new Wahkeena Trail, 1922
    CCC crews building trails in the Gifford Pinchot, 1933
    CCC crews building trails in the Gifford Pinchot, 1933

    Volunteer Based

    Today, almost all trails on our public lands are now maintained by volunteers. From team building events, to trail parties, and organizing behind the scenes, there’s a way everyone can help.

    Get Involved

    How We Work

    We begin with maintenance and stewardship projects that preserve current trails, with the idea that we’re not willing to lose another trail to neglect.

    Our Mission

    Long Term Goal

    We’re also committed to restoring proper funding and renewing public agency interest in trails for all the proven benefits they provide for the public.

    Advocacy

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    Feet of Trail Maintained in 2018

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    Trail Parties in 2018

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    Volunteers in 2018

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    In Kind Value of Volunteer Time

    People & Partners

    As a Trailkeepers of Oregon supporter, you’re helping ensure that our sacred outdoor spaces are protected and maintained for years to come.

    Our Staff

    Steve Kruger

    Steve Kruger

    Executive Director

    Steve has worked in parks and natural areas for nearly 15 years, around San Francisco, Milwaukee, WI, and Portland – connecting people to nature was integral to his passion. Prior to TKO, he served 10 years with Oregon State Parks, spending his last 2 years with the Gorge State Parks management team.

    Natalie Ferraro

    Natalie Ferraro

    Engagement Manager

    A life long Cascadian, Natalie grew up hiking, camping, and climbing trees in Southwest Washington. She earned her degree in Environmental Science from Washington State University and has worked in outdoor recreation and education since 2012. Before joining Trailkeepers of Oregon as a staff person in 2018, Natalie was a volunteer with TKO and actually helped with the very first Tread School event. In addition to helping out with all of TKO’s volunteer and fundraising programs, she also manages the Trail Ambassador Network. She began with the program as it’s volunteer coordinator under Friends of the Columbia Gorge in 2019 and oversaw its successful transition to Trailkeepers of Oregon in 2020.

    Amariah Jean-Baptiste

    Producer – Comms. & Data Specialist

    Amariah is a Florida native who fell in love with the Pacific Northwest after seeing the beauty of its trails. She has spent the last 4 years gaining experience in the marketing industry and is in the final year of obtaining her Bachelor’s Degree in Public Relations and Communications from Florida International University. Growing up with few trails in her region she has developed a passion for educating the public on the importance of connecting with nature. She is excited to be able to spread this message through TKO!

    Brandon Tigner

    North Coast Stewardship Coordinator

    Brandon is an Ohio native who found his place in the Pacific Northwest. His passion for trails and stewardship was sparked while volunteering with the Main Appalachian Trail Club, then as an assistant crew leader. Volunteering on an organic farm brought him to the coast and he has since worked in landscaping, construction and fisheries. Brandon has spent the last two seasons as a Trail Crew Leader with Washington Trails Association.

    Josh Durham

    South Coast Stewardship Coordinator

    An Oregon native, Josh cut his teeth on the woods of Mt. Hood and the waterfalls of the Columbia River Gorge.  He has spent the last three years engaged with TKO in various capacities including a season as the Gorge FS Trails Intern, and a season on the Forest Service Trail Crew in the Willamette National Forest. He’s excited to bring our brand of engaging and quality stewardship to the southern reaches of the Oregon Coast.

    Current Intern

    Jonathan Bennett

    South Coast Trails Intern

    Jon is an outdoor enthusiast who has been in the PNW for over 6 years. He has been a self-employed glass artist for over 19 years and worked last year as an Oregon State Parks Ranger for Harris Beach State Park. He has also worked as a deck hand on a Tender boat in the southeastern islands of Alexander Archipelago in Alaska and built mountain biking trails on the southern Oregon coast. Not only proud to call the southern Oregon coast his home, Jon is proud to be a trail crew leader and ambassador for Trailkeepers of Oregon and the southern Oregon Coast.

    tools on the ground

    Emily VanCleve

    Gorge Forest Service Trails Intern

    Start date September 1st, 2020.

    Past Interns

    Riley McManus

    Gorge FS Trails Intern

    Karen Cheney

    Karen Cheney

    Gorge State Parks Trails Intern

    Josh Durham

    Josh Durham

    Gorge FS Trails Intern

    Our Board

    Paul Gerald

    Paul Gerald

    President

    Paul joined the board in 2014. He is a freelance writer, author, publisher, and tour guide. He has written for The Oregonian and Willamette Week, and more than 300 travel and food articles for the Memphis Flyer before moving to Oregon in 1996. Paul became board president in 2018.

    Jaime English

    Vice President

    Jaime joined up with the TKO board to further help in parks and natural areas planning and development, much of which she has first hand knowledge of leading in the Columbia River Gorge when she worked for Oregon State Parks. She also has planning and development of nature play areas, looking to engage youth in the outdoors.

    Terry Donahe

    Treasurer

    Terry comes to us with many years hiking and climbing in the Pacific Northwest and is eager to continue his passion by joining TKO’s board. Terry has given time and energy through extensive volunteer work for the Mazamas, Albertina Kerr, the Stanford Alumni Association and OPB. Bringing an undergrad degree in Economics and masters degrees in Financial Services and Management, he’s also a Certified Financial Planner and wealth manager for a small firm in Portland.

    Claudio Berstein

    Board Member

    Claudio joined the board in January 2020. He’s a native Venezuelan where he spent his free time hiking and bushwhacking in the surrounding mountains of Caracas. After a 6 year hiking hiatus while he lived in Chicago, he moved to Portland and quickly fell in love with all the outdoor opportunities the state has to offer. He’s an avid hiker, backpacker and  photographer who’s lead hundreds of hikes with one of Portland’s social hiking group.

    Elaine Keavney

    Elaine Keavney

    Board Member

    Elaine Keavney joined the board in December 2016.  She is a registered nurse who spent her clinical years primarily in the emergency department.  Later, she became a nurse educator and worked both in clinical and online academic education, where she still works part time.

    Vicente Harrison

    Board Member

    Vicente rose from part-time, park ranger to his appointment in 2018 to lead the program as Portland Parks & Recreation’s Security and Emergency Manager. He holds a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies-psychology from Concordia University and is an accomplished author of a children’s book called My Nature Exploration. When he’s not working, he enjoys exploring Oregon with his wife Rachel, son Vicente II, and daughter Harper – on a trail or with a pair of binoculars as an avid hiker and bird watcher.

    Megan Zabel Holmes

    Megan Zabel Holmes

    Board Member

    Megan joined the board in 2017. After growing up in Minnesota and attending college in Wisconsin, she headed west in 2005 and quickly fell in love with Oregon’s wild places. Megan is an avid hiker, photographer and forager who’s dreaming up ways to cultivate a love of the outdoors in her toddler daughter.

    Ben Hedstrom

    Board Member

    Ben joined the board in 2018. He is trained as a landscape architect and has worked for public agencies planning and constructing public recreation areas and trails in Oregon since 2012. He is currently a park planner in the Portland area.

    Schuyler Warren

    Schuyler Warren

    Board Member

    Schuyler joined the board in 2016 shortly after returning to Oregon from Kentucky, where he worked for an environmental education non-profit and served on the board of an urban trails organization. An urban planner and landscape architect by training, he currently works as a planner. Schuyler became board treasurer in 2017 and board vice president in 2018.

    Kendra Manton

    Board Member

    Kendra Manton joined the TKO board at the end of 2019. Kendra is a Portland native and grew up enjoying the wonders of the PNW.  She spent 10 years teaching experiential education across the West and abroad.  She happily returned to Portland 10 years ago to once again explore and now teach her own children what makes this part of the world so special.  She spent the last 5 years working in communications for Oregon land trusts.

    Tom Kloster

    Tom Kloster

    Board Member

    Tom is a founding member and past board president and has served in a variety of other board positions over the years in helping get TKO established. Tom grew up in Oregon and has been hiking since he learned to walk, thanks to an outdoors-oriented family life. He’s passionate about giving today’s young families the same amazing experiences he had growing up.

    Our Advisory Council

    Curtis Smith

    Board Advisor

    John Sparks

    Board Advisor

    Maegan Jossy

    Board Advisor

    Cody Simmonds

    Cody Simmonds

    Board Advisor

    Cheryl Hill

    Board Advisor

    Emily Swensen

    Emily Swensen

    Board Advisor

    Jeff Statt

    Jeff Statt

    Board Advisor

    Jamie Chabot

    Jamie Chabot

    Board Advisor

    Jane Garbisch

    Jane Garbisch

    Board Advisor

    Renee Tkach

    Renee Tkach

    Board Advisor

    Alex Brown

    Alex Brown

    Board Advisor

    Ron Northway

    Ron Northway

    Board Advisor

    Ryan Ojerio

    Ryan Ojerio

    Board Advisor

    Dan Porter

    Dan Porter

    Board Advisor

    Cindy Lee

    Cindy Lee

    Board Advisor

    Tom Helmer

    Tom Helmer

    Board Advisor

    Jeff Lawton

    Jeff Lawton

    Board Advisor

    Want to Get Involved?

    Send us a message to learn more about how you can help us advocate for Oregon’s trails. Or contact us at:

    Trailkeepers of Oregon
    P.O. Box 14814
    Portland, Oregon 97293
    (971) 206-4351



      Partners & Supporters

      TKO’s mission is accomplished through thoughtful relationships with passionate partners and supporters.

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