Executive Director, Adam Kolton
Adam rejoined Alaska Wilderness League as its Executive Director in October, 2017. Earlier in his career he worked for the organization as Arctic Campaign Director, leading the successful defense of the Arctic Wildlife Refuge during the early George W. Bush years. In that role, Adam traveled to Alaska extensively, working with Alaska Native leaders and state-based groups, and experiencing many of the state’s iconic landscapes first hand. He also testified before Congress, debated Arctic drilling before the House Democratic Caucus, the D.C. Bar Association, and on major news outlets like CNN and Fox News. Between stints at the League, Adam held three different positions at National Wildlife Federation (NWF) over the course of 15 years, most recently overseeing its 40 person Washington, D.C., office as Vice President of National Advocacy. During his NWF tenure Adam was named one of the top environmental lobbyists by The Hill. He oversaw legislative strategy and campaigns related to the protection of public lands in the Rocky Mountain West, funding for agriculture conservation, the reform of U.S Army Corps of Engineers policies and the protection of millions of acres of wetlands and streams. Adam was also a co-chair of the America’s Great Waters Coalition and helped re-launch National Wildlife Federation Action Fund and its associated bipartisan political activities. Adam has had a variety of other roles including working in the public affairs department of Sierra Club, as the lead media coordinator for a 1992 presidential environmental forum, and as a technical advisor of conservation awards given out by President George H.W Bush. Outside of the conservation arena, Adam co-founded a consumer advocacy group called Sports Fans United and an organization that arranged youth baseball events in and cultural exchanges with Puerto Rico. Adam graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has degrees in Journalism and History. He lives in Bethesda, MD, with his wife Laura, two boys and dog Riley.
Annual Giving Manager, Arielle Baker
Arielle joined Alaska Wilderness League in the summer of 2018. She grew up in Michigan and moved to D.C. after obtaining her BA in Psychology from Calvin College. During her six years in D.C., Arielle has helped start a grant writing firm, trained nonprofit professionals on development best practices and managed the community engagement program at a transitional housing program for women. She is passionate about connecting good people to organizations that are making an impact, and was excited to bring her fundraising knowledge to an organization dedicated to preserving beautiful lands and waters. Arielle first visited Alaska in the summer of 2013 and still counts it as one of her favorite places in America. When she isn’t writing emails or creating fundraising plans, she can usually be found attending concerts, enjoying D.C.’s public pools or adding stamps to her National Parks Passport.
Conservation Associate, Noa Banayan
Noa joined Alaska Wilderness League as Conservation Associate in the summer of 2017 after graduating from American University in Washington, D.C. She studied international relations with a focus on environmental sustainability. Focused on domestic public lands issues now, she finds that the distance between Washington, D.C., and Alaska can certainly feel international at times! She learned more about how the legislative sausage is made while interning with a couple of the League’s partners, and to her surprise, actually liked it. As Conservation Associate, Noa spends most of her time on Capitol Hill talking to lawmakers (okay, their staff) about legislation that impacts public lands and waters in Alaska. When she’s not in the office or on the Hill, Noa spends as much time as she can playing outside, but will concede to the indoors for yoga, rock climbing walls and stand-up comedy shows.
Development Coordinator, Paul Christianson
Paul joined the Alaska Wilderness team in early 2018. He graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2013, where his studies ranged from political science and history to the German and Russian languages. He developed an interest in environmental issues early on in his life and has always been an outdoorsman. Prior to joining the League, he worked in a variety of positions across the political spectrum, gaining experience on Capitol Hill, congressional campaigns, and the field of political software. Paul seeks to involve more people in protecting these wild areas, and to help fund the dedicated team that keeps them that way.
Legislative Director, Leah Donahey
Leah joined Alaska Wilderness League in the fall of 2010. She grew up in campaign politics in Southern California and started advocating for candidates and issues at age 3. Her parents taught Leah the importance of citizen action and the environment especially through annual trips to Yosemite. For almost a decade before joining the League, Leah ran environmental protection campaigns for CREDO Action. Leah has in-depth experience in campaign strategy and policy initiative development, leading strategic coalitions, implementing the design and execution of online and in-person campaigns. Leah has led some of our most successful campaigns to protect the Arctic and manages all of our efforts in D.C. While you can often find Leah walking the halls of Congress, she spends her favorite hours rallying in the streets to protect Alaska or hiking in our awesome public lands with both two- and four-legged friends.
Senior Communications Manager, Corey Himrod
Corey has been with Alaska Wilderness League since February 2013, and has led its communications  and social media shop since the beginning of 2018. Originally from Michigan and still a Midwesterner at heart, Corey has lived in the metro-D.C. area for nearly 15 years. He is a graduate of Indiana University where he earned his BA in Journalism, and earned his law degree from Northeastern University School of Law. Following three-plus years of working at advocacy group Walmart Watch on legal issues related to big box development, he moved into the environmental realm (and the communications field) for good, spending time at the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, League of Conservation Voters and Conservation Lands Foundation. Corey has made multiple trips to Alaska, although Southeast Alaska and its amazing forests (and bears!!!) has a special place in his heart. When not defending Alaska, you’ll find him in the wilds of Northern Virginia with his wife and daughter.
Development Manager, Chris Konish
Chris began working at Alaska Wilderness League in September 2017. A California native, he graduated with a degree in Literature from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and shortly thereafter began fundraising for Los Angeles-based arts and education nonprofits while enjoying the beaches, mountains and deserts of southern California. After starting his career at nonprofit publisher Red Hen Press (featuring an Alaskan imprint, Boreal Books), he moved on to support individual fundraising at The Broad Stage in Santa Monica, and later, transitioned into the world of grantmaking at the Carl and Roberta Deutsch Foundation. These experiences inform his work in managing the fundraising operations for the League, and help him ensure supporters remain connected and invested in protecting Alaska public lands and waters. As a new D.C. resident, Chris spends his off hours exploring the District and its nearby hiking trails with his wife and their dog.
Director of Finance and Operations, Mladen Mates
Mladen joined the Alaska Wilderness League team in January 2008. He graduated from Empire State College with a Bachelor of Arts in International and European Economic Studies. He is a Certified Nonprofit Accounting Professional and works daily to make the most of the League’s limited resources. He’s also an amazing photographer and our website and materials feature many of his images. When not at work, you can find him on the water honing his sailing skills or paddle-boarding.
Alaska Director, Andy Moderow
Based in Anchorage, Andy joined the Alaska Wilderness League team in January 2016. A lifelong Alaskan, Andy grew up running sled dogs and finished the 1,100 mile Iditarod in 2001 just before attending Cornell University. After graduating, he returned to Alaska and interned in the National Parks Conservation Association Alaska office. Following that, he spent four years as a state legislative aide, taking a yearlong break to manage a statewide political campaign. Just prior to joining the League team, he worked for the Alaska LCV State League in a variety of roles, ranging from Executive Director, Political Director, and Data Director. When not working, Andy can be found at the family dog kennel – located just outside Denali National Park – or in the mountains skiing and studying the snowpack.
National Field Organizer, Lois Norrgard
With Alaska Wilderness League since 2007, Lois transitioned from small business owner to environmental organizer in 2000. As a powerhouse advocate for the protection of our amazing public lands in Alaska, she strengthens, empowers and organizes our passionate grassroots volunteers so they can leave a lasting impact on decision-makers. She cares deeply about sustainable living and spends time gardening, hiking with her dogs, and exploring nature’s beauty in her home state of Minnesota.
Arctic Campaign Manager, Kelsie Rudolph
Kelsie joined Alaska Wilderness League in the spring of 2014. She graduated from Valparaiso University in 2013 with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science. Since starting as an intern with the League, Kelsie has held several positions within the organization. With a passion for environmental issues and a little fundraising support experience, she first started full time in the development department and after one year moved to the campaign/program team to work on our Arctic campaigns. As campaign manager, she supports our internal staff and external partners across our Arctic campaigns to run winning campaigns to America’s public lands and waters in Arctic Alaska. In her free time, she enjoys reading, knitting, watching British crime dramas, and going to Orange Theory.
Director of Outreach, Monica Scherer
Monica develops and manages volunteer efforts for all the Leagues campaigns across the continental United States and coordinates efforts between partner organizations. She strives to empower and support individuals and organizations to engage in meaningful actions on behalf of Alaska’s public lands. Monica joined Alaska Wilderness League in January of 2007 as a field organizer and later started the Alaska Wild Educator Network, growing it currently to more than 1,000 educators across the country. Prior to working at the League, she worked at the League of Conservation Voters and for Representative John Dingell (D-MI). She has a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Policy and Behavior from the University of Michigan and a law degree from Widener University. In her free time she….wait, what free time?!
Operations Manager, Basia Sikora
Basia joined the League in the spring of 2013. She graduated from Illinois State University where she studied Political Science. Basia previously worked on logistics and operations for political campaigns in Illinois before moving to Washington, D.C., to indulge her love of history. While working as an educational guide with mostly foreign exchange students, Basia discovered the importance of passion when advocating — this is when she knew she wanted to pursue a nonprofit career. In her multifaceted role, she provides League staff with support and logistics that help League campaigns win. When Basia is not at work, she is surely thinking of her next adventure — which probably includes chasing a flying disc somewhere across the globe, or petting a local dog.
Online Director, Hilary Stamper
Hilary has been helping organizations and individuals drive progressive social change for more than 18 years. After graduating from Stanford with a Master of Arts and Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a burning desire to help wildlife, Hilary spent nearly 10 years at Care2.com working with nonprofit clients. At Alaska Wilderness League since spring 2013, she continues to focus on developing winning online strategies that engage supporters and turn online activities into offline results. She has continued to evaluate and couple online tools with concise, compelling communications that make it easy for individuals to give money and take actions to protect our wild places. When not working, coaching club soccer or tending a menagerie of pets and kids, Hilary and her dogs are running along the beach or sauntering through California mountains.
Conservation Associate, Emily Sullivan Prior to joining the Alaska Wilderness League team in November 2018, Emily spent nine seasons as a naturalist guide in Denali National Park. After graduating from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2009, she traveled to Alaska to spend “one summer” exploring its dreamy landscape. She immediately fell in love with the state and has returned to Alaska to live and work every year since, becoming a resident in 2014. Her intimacy with the subarctic ecosystem and her explorations across Alaska’s untouched lands have inspired her freelance writing and photography as well as her desire to work in conservation. When not working to protect the Alaskan landscape that she loves, Emily can be found in the mountains: her favorite days are spent ski mountaineering, trail running, backpacking, or packrafting through the state’s pristine wild lands.