Staff and Board

LINK TO SECURE AREA

for Board, Leadership Council and other working documents

  • Gary Werner, Executive Director

    Gary WernerGary Werner has served since 1991 as Chair and now as Executive Director of the Partnership for the National Trails System, a 501c3 non-profit organization. Gary represents the Partnership in work with Federal agency staff and other non-profit organizations to develop national trails’ policy initiatives. Under Gary’s guidance and as a member of national coalitions with a focus on trails, the Partnership works to influence public policy to provide better preservation, conservation, and stewardship of nationally significant cultural, historic, scenic and recreational resources. These coalitions include the Conservation Lands Alliance, the Land & Water Conservation Fund Coalition, and the Cultural Resources Preservation Coalition.

    In 1997, he helped organize Americans for Our Heritage and Recreation, a national organization representing more than 150 conservation organizations, to revive Congressional and Administration support for the Land & Water Conservation Fund. Gary serves on the Board of Directors of the National Trails Training Partnership (NTTP) a consortium of non-profit trail organizations working to promote more and better training opportunities for volunteers and professional trail builders to improve the quality of trails and protect the environments around them. Members of NTTP include the American Hiking Society, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, International Mountain Biking Association, Leave No Trace, and the National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council.

    A resident of Madison, Wisconsin, Gary worked for 12 years for the Ice Age Park & Trail Foundation organizing volunteers, coordinating trail planning and construction projects with the National Park Service, Wisconsin Departments of Natural Resources and Transportation, and negotiating right of way purchases with landowners. Over the past 28 years Gary has organized and led volunteers in a variety of trail construction and maintenance and natural resource preservation projects for the Sierra Club, The Nature Conservancy, the Rails to Trails Conservancy, American Hiking Society, and the Ice Age Trail Alliance.

    Contact Gary: (608) 249-7870 ext. 1 // gary@pnts.org

    Chelsea Bodamer, Outreach and Youth Programs Coordinator

    Chelsea Bodamer Chelsea Bodamer was drawn to the PNTS after attending various workshops and conferences as a trail apprentice. On any given day she can be found managing the PNTS social media, developing youth programing, advocating for the trails, and helping to plan events.

    Originally a Pittsburgh native, Chelsea attended the University of Pittsburgh where she majored in Media & Professional Communications with a Certificate in Digital Media. Upon graduation, she moved to Texas to join a Conservation Corps. It was during this time that she began to develop her relationship with the great outdoors. Shortly thereafter, she moved to St. Louis to join an AmeriCorps program. Running a homeless shelter, responding to disasters across the United States, and volunteer recruitment were just a few of her roles during this time. In 2012, she received the AmeriCorps State Service award for her service from the state of Missouri.

    In her free time she can be found exploring with her dog, teaching and practicing yoga, and volunteering.

    Contact Chelsea: (608) 285-2254 // chelsea@pnts.org

    Julia Glad Pooler, Communications Coordinator

    Julia GladJulia Glad Pooler is the communications coordinator for the Partnership for the National Trails System. She compiles and designs Pathways Across America, the quarterly magazine of the National Trails System, and assembles print materials and reports. She also assists with Partnership for the National Trails System workshops and conferences and a variety of projects. Julia completed her undergraduate education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and earned her Masters of Business Administration through Thunderbird School of Global Management. She is a lifetime Girl Scout who received her Gold Award and has experience in youth program development. She enjoys a wide range of outdoor activities and ballroom dancing.

    Contact Julia: julia@pnts.org

    Don Owen, Consultant

    Don Owen, of Round Hill, Virginia, is the senior executive of Lands Trails and Parks LLC, a consulting firm specializing in working with national scenic and historic trail organizations, non-profit land trusts, conservation groups, and parks.

    He consults regularly for the Partnership for the National Trails System, the Maryland Environmental Trust, the West Virginia Land Trust, the Land Trust of Virginia, and a variety of other conservation organizations. He also serves as the Potomac River Watershed Circuit Rider for the Land Trust Alliance.

    Don worked for the National Park Service from 1985 to 2008 in several different capacities: as a realty specialist for the Appalachian Trail Land Office, as the resource management coordinator for the Appalachian Trail Conservancy on special assignment, and as the environmental protection specialist with the Appalachian Trail Park Office.

    He then served as executive director of the Land Trust of Virginia from 2008 until 2014. Don was a volunteer trail maintainer for the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club from 1988 to 2013, and continues to serve as a volunteer corridor monitor.

    He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Continental Divide Trail Coalition, the Stewardship Council for the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, and the Advisory Council for the Mosby Heritage Area Association.

    Liz Wessel, Consultant

    Liz WesselLiz Wessel opened Green Concierge Travel in 2006. She has a strong interest in building the market for ecotourism and supplying the needs of ecotravelers either inbound or outbound to destinations in North America and beyond. By identifying and enhancing links between ecotourism destinations in North America and green tourism infrastructure such as lodging, transit, restaurants, indigenous sites and local natural areas and trails we can continue to strengthen the ecotourism market in North America.

    In her consulting work for Partnership for the National Trails System, she has supported fundraising efforts, coordinated the 2013 Biennial conference in Tucson, and worked on the redesign of the Partnership website.

    Contact Liz at: 608.204.2717 or liz@pnts.org

  • Officers and Executive Committee

    • Liz Bergeron, Pacific Crest Trail Association – PNTS President
    • Reba Wells Grandrud, Old Spanish Trail Association – PNTS Secretary
    • Ross Marshall, Santa Fe Trail Association – Vice President for Governance
    • Christy Corzine – Director-at-Large
    • Vacant – Vice President for Development
    • Steve Elkinton
    • Margaret Gorski, Lewis and Clark Trail Heritage Foundation
    • Charlie Willard
    • Kathy DeCoster, Trust for Public Land
    • Teresa Martinez, Continental Divide Trail Coalition
    • James Mallory, Lewis & Clark Trail Trust
    • Steven Gonzales, Camino Real de los Tejas NHT Assn
    • Elizabeth Stewart, Anza Trail Foundation
    • Bruce Matthews, North Country Trail Association
    • Mike Dawson, Pacific Crest Trail Association
    • Mike Wollmer, Ice Age Trail Alliance
    • Jim Zimmerman, Nez Perce Trail Foundation
    • Carlos Schomaker, Florida Trail Association

    Other Committees

    Advocacy & Policy, Conferences & Workshops, Finance, Honors & Awards, Pathways & Website

    Our Leadership Council

    • Kanani Frazer, Ala Kahakai Trail Association
    • Kaleo Paik, Ala Kahakai Trail Association
    • Elizabeth Stewart, Anza Trail Foundation
    • Josh Surette, Appalachian Mountain Club (NET)
    • Morgan Sommerville, Appalachian Trail Conservancy
    • Matt Nelson, Arizona Trail Association
    • Kate Baker, Chesapeake Conservancy
    • Clare Cain, Connecticut Forest & Park Assn (NENST)
    • Teresa Martinez, Continental Divide Trail Coalition
    • Jim Wolf, Continental Divide Trail Society
    • Barbara Schaefer, E Mau Na Ala Hele (Ala Kahakai)
    • Steven Gonzales, El Camino Real de los Tejas NHT Assn
    • Troy Ainsworth, El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro Trail Association
    • Carlos Schomaker, Florida Trail Association
    • Mike Wollmer, Ice Age Trail Alliance
    • Judy Bittner, Iditarod Historic Trail Alliance
    • Lindy Hatcher, Lewis & Clark Trail Heritage Foundation
    • James L. Mallory, Lewis & Clark Trail Trust, Inc.
    • Ron Andersen, Mormon Pioneer Trail Association
    • Tony Turnbow , Natchez Trace Parkway Association
    • Pat Hearty, National Pony Express Association
    • Jim Zimmerman, Nez Perce Trail Foundation
    • Bruce Matthews, North Country Trail Association
    • John Hiscock, Old Spanish Trail Association
    • Jere Krakow, Oregon-California Trails Association
    • RG Absher, Overmountain Victory Trail Assn
    • Mike Dawson, Pacific Crest Trail Association
    • Reed Waite, Pacific Northwest Trail Association
    • Ric Francke, Potomac Heritage Trail Association
    • Ross Marshall, Santa Fe Trail Association
    • Jack Baker, Trail of Tears Association
    • Ursula Reed, W3R-US (Washington Rochambeau NHT Association)

     

    Affiliate Members

    • Eric Seaborg, American Discovery Trail Society
    • Peter Olsen, American Hiking Society
    • Greg Miller, American Hiking Society
    • Alan Hill, Back Country Horsemen of America
    • Randy Rasmussen, Back Country Horsemen of America
    • Kerstin Wolle, Carson Valley Trail Association
    • Gary Hicks, Kansas City Area Historic Trails Association
    • Dave Aamodt, National Frontier Trails Museum
    • Mike Baughn, Smoky Hill Trail Association
    • Mary Bennington, Tahoe Rim Trail Association
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