American Hiking Society Announces Kathryn Van Waes as New Executive Director

May 17, 2017

American Hiking Society (AHS) is pleased to announce Kathryn Van Waes, Ph.D. as its new Executive Director. Van Waes will step into the leadership role on June 5, 2017. “The AHS board underwent a thorough five-month search prior to selecting Kathryn Van Waes,” said Jack Hess, AHS Board Chair. “We are excited to work with Dr. Van Waes to grow American Hiking Society and ensure that all Americans have access to hiking trails where they can explore the outdoors.”

Kathryn Van Waes has served as a Policy Director for The ONE Campaign since 2014, where she helped establish the organization’s policy and strategy for agricultural development, nutrition, women and girls, climate change, trade and investment, energy poverty, and global security and development. Prior to this, she worked for the U.S. Department of State as Chief of Staff/Senior Policy Advisor in the Secretary’s Office of Global Food Security.

After earning her Ph.D. in Geological Sciences from Brown University, Van Waes worked as a Postdoctoral Scientist at the International Space Science Institute in Bern Switzerland, as a visiting scientist at the University of Copenhagen Center for Ice and Climate, and at the Smithsonian Center for Earth and Planetary Studies.

Van Waes is an avid hiker, backpacker, and rock climber. A Montana native who makes frequent trips back to hike in Glacier National Park and the Beartooth Range, Van Waes is excited to apply her leadership and policy expertise in her new role with American Hiking Society.

Founded in 1976, American Hiking Society is the only national, recreation-based nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting and protecting America’s hiking trails, their surrounding natural areas, and the hiking experience.  To learn more about American Hiking Society and its mission and programs, visit www.AmericanHiking.org or call (301) 565-6704.