Harpers Ferry, WV (January 12, 2012) – Kweli Kitwana has been selected to serve as the volunteer ambassador to the designated Appalachian Trail (A.T.) Communities of Harpers Ferry and Bolivar, WV. In this role, she will serve as a community liaison to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) and the local volunteer club, the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club, to bolster volunteerism and stewardship of the Trail the local level.
“The Appalachian Trail Conservancy is excited about building off its volunteer base by providing A.T. Ambassadors to designated A. T. Communities to help increase local stewardship of public lands and support healthy lifestyles for community citizens,” stated Julie Judkins, Community Program Manager of the ATC.
Kweli recently moved into the Harpers Ferry community and served as the lead volunteer in coordinating the Family Hiking Day. Kweli is a skilled community organizer and facilitator with over 35 years of professional community engagement and training experience. She and her husband are lifelong hikers and outdoor enthusiast. They have hiked many state and national trails, and she is excited to share her experience and skills to advance the mission of the ATC.
“As an Appalachian Trail Community Ambassador, it is my hope to advance the organization and its partners’ events, efforts and programs. In particular, I am interest in increasing the awareness and involvement of people of color,” said Kitwana.
The Appalachian Trail Community™ program is designed to recognize communities that promote and protect the A.T. Towns, counties, and communities along the A.T.’s corridor are considered assets by A.T. hikers and many of these towns act as good friends and neighbors to the Trail. The program serves to assist communities with local initiatives such as sustainable economic development through tourism and outdoor recreation, while preserving and protecting the A.T. The A.T. Community Ambassador opportunity is the first of its kind within the A.T. cooperative management partnership.
The ATC was founded in 1925 by volunteers and federal officials working to build a continuous footpath along the Appalachian Mountains. The A.T. is approximately 2,185 miles in length, ranging from Maine to Georgia, making it one of the longest, continuously marked footpath in the world. Volunteers typically donate more than 220,000 hours each year on Trail-related work and about 2 to 3 million visitors walk a portion of the A.T. each year. This year also marks the 75th anniversary of the completion of the A.T.
About the Appalachian Trail Conservancy
The Appalachian Trail Conservancy mission is to preserve and manage the Appalachian Trail – ensuring that its vast natural beauty and priceless cultural heritage can be shared and enjoyed today, tomorrow, and for centuries to come. For more information please visit www.appalachiantrail.org.
Contact: Julie Judkins
Appalachian Trail Conservancy
Tel: 828.254.3708 x11
Email: [email protected]