The Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) is pleased to announce that speed hiker Jennifer Pharr Davis of Asheville, North Carolina has been elected to the board of directors. The board is responsible for communicating the mission of the ATC, and enhancing the public standing of the ATC by ensuring legal and ethical integrity and practicing fiscal responsibility.
Davis is an avid hiker and Appalachian Trail (A.T.) enthusiast, having thru-hiked the entirety of the 2,190-mile Trail three times. On one of those hikes, she set the fastest known time on the A.T., earning her a spot on National Geographic’s Adventurers of the Year in 2012. Davis has used her prowess to advise other long-distance hikers through her two guidebooks, two memoirs and her small business, Blue Ridge Hiking Company. The Company offers guided hikes near Asheville in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Davis’ significant firsthand experience on the Trail will be an asset to the ATC as the organization continues to implement a new strategic plan.
“Spending time on the Appalachian Trail will certainly have a positive impact on your life, but as hikers we also need to constantly ask ourselves how our lives can positively impact the trail,” said Davis.
“The board of directors’ passion, expertise and guidance is critical to the mission of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy and the well-being of the Appalachian Trail,” said Ron Tipton, executive director/CEO of the ATC. “The board works tirelessly to ensure the organization runs efficiently and has the necessary resources to fulfill its missions. The Appalachian Trail Conservancy is very excited about the impact this group will have on the management and protection of the Appalachian Trail.”
The 2015 board of directors will provide guidance to the ATC as the organization implements its Strategic Plan. The overarching goals of the Strategic Plan include Proactive Protection, Engaged Partners, Effective Stewardship, Broader Relevancy, and Strengthened Capacity & Operational Excellence. These goals are designed to advance the health and long-term management of the A.T.
Also elected to the board were Norman P. Findley, Daniel A. Howe, John G. Noll, Colleen T. Peterson, and Rubén Rosales. Beth Critton, Edward R. Guyot, Nathaniel Stoddard, Arthur Foley, Mary Higley, Elizabeth Pierce Thompson, Robert E. Hutchinson Jr., Sandra Marra and Greg Winchester will return to the board.
The ATC was founded in 1925 by volunteers and federal officials working to build a continuous footpath along the Appalachian Mountains. A unit of the National Park System, the A.T. ranges from Maine to Georgia and is approximately 2,190 miles in length. It is the longest hiking-only footpath in the world. The mission of the ATC 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.