AORE Association News March 2017 - Page 10


Within our current political climate, we believe advocating for diversity, equity, and inclusion should be on the forefront of the minds and goals of educators worldwide. We are thrilled that celebrating the successes of people of color in the outdoors, increasing programming for women in the industry, and seriously addressing the “adventure gap” in the outdoor industry have become more significant priorities for AORE.

We are making significant strides toward a more inclusive AORE within every facet of the organization. The

Roanoke host team sought out and effectively recruited Rue Mapp as our keynote speaker, Jeannette Stawski and the national office staff have been researching funding streams for DEI initiatives and are crafting a DEI-themed Outdoor Insider, and the Event Garde team has been designing a phenomenal DEI-related pre-conference program.

At the conference, many of you may have heard about a proposal we submitted to work with the Avarna Group. This was a multi-faceted proposal that would take place over a period of two years. It included increased DEI education for the Board of Directors and executive director, a comprehensive inventory of existing DEI efforts, and a vision and strategy for ensuring that DEI efforts are integral to AORE and effective moving forward. Due to the cost and multi-faceted nature of this proposal, it has yet to be approved by the board. Additionally, the Avarna Group’s services were in such high demand that they were no longer able to fit us into their schedule given the delay in the approval process. We still believe that these efforts would be incredibly valuable for AORE and are optimistic that we will work with the Avarna Group in the future.

Most important, we are making significant strides toward ensuring increased access to and support for outdoor recreation and education for all people. And we are committed to helping AORE become the leader in diversity, equity, and inclusion work in the outdoor industry.

Progress on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Katie Hecker

Abby Rowe