After supporting kids’ outdoor education for seven years through her leadership of the North Cascades Institute’s Wild program in Sedro-Woolley, educator Amy Brown of Bellingham has received some support of her own.

Brown was awarded the 2011 E3 Washington Award of Excellence in the Informal Educator category at an awards banquet on June 20 in Seattle. This award recognizes an outstanding educator who provides learning for all ages in settings outside of the traditional classroom.

Brown has been coordinating and leading the Wild program since its inception in 2006. The program features summer wilderness expeditions in North Cascades National Park and Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. High school students canoe, camp, backpack and complete conservation service projects while developing leadership skills and learning about the natural and cultural history of the North Cascades region.

Brown earned her Masters in Environmental Education through the Institute’s graduate residency program with Western Washington University. To date, she has helped more than 300 youth experience the wilderness areas of the North Cascades, coordinated stewardship projects that have cumulatively contributed more than 10,000 hours of service work to public lands, and helped to connect alumni with opportunities to continue their engagement in outdoors stewardship. Brown also initiated the first North Cascades Youth Leadership Conference in November 2010.

Brown previously worked as a whitewater kayaking instructor and raft guide in North Carolina and Tennessee, as an adventure travel leader in Panama, Costa Rica and Mexico, as am interpretive park ranger in Utah and as an environmental educator in Washington, D.C., and Washington state.

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