All Mountain Kids Staff are trained in First Aid and CPR (at a minimum) and have passed a criminal background check.  Staff Training includes learning Mountain Kids safety protocol, and our mission, philosophy and activities.

 


Katie MacaulayKatie Macaulay
Founder, Director
Mountain Biking & Mountain Girls Instructor

Katie Macaulay is the Founder and Director of Mountain Kids!  She feels strongly about enabling kids to leave hectic schedules and technology behind in order to wonder, learn, and play in nature. 

Katie earned her degree in Education from the University of British Columbia and studied the Art of Nature Mentoring at the Wilderness Awareness School. However, some of her most formative learning occurred during her participation and subsequent leadership with a Canadian Peace Corps program. In Guyana, Katie initiated a Big Brother-Big Sister program for street children, taking them out into wild nature. This challenging and ultimately rewarding program led her to value experiential learning and wish to make a difference in her own community.

Katie taught middle school for 10 years, has accumulated more than 20 years experience leading children in outdoor settings, and has led Mountain Kids! for the past 13 years.  During this time, she has developed programs in partnership with the Santa Fe Public Schools (SFPS), Journey Montessori School, various summer camps and of course, Mountain Kids! 

In 2020, Mountain Kids! received one of the first Outdoor Equity Fund grants to work with SFPS to support teachers in taking their learning outside through Local Outdoor Learning Adventures (LOLA).  Katie is over the moon to be working on this project and excited to support Every Kids, Every Day, Every Way in New Mexico.

Katie lives in Santa Fe surrounded by wild nature with her husband, two kids and four furry friends. Yes, they are all wild.


Carmen HarrisCarmen Harris
Wildside Afterschool/Saturdays Instructor

Carmen Harris has worked in early childhood education throughout the last decade. Her work couples her concern to nourish the exuberant wonder of childhood with her love for the magic of the natural world. She has a great love for wildness (within and without), and an abiding passion for the rooted world of plants. Herbcraft, botany, and gardening all feed Carmen’s spirit, as does her pleasure in dance, and her training in the visual arts.

Growing up in New Zealand, Carmen was informed by the mountains, valleys and waters of that land, and by her proximity to Maori culture. She has been participant in and organized numerous classes in plant medicine, primitive skills, tracking, and bodywork. Carmen is a graduate of Waldorf Early Childhood Education from Sunbridge Institute in New York. She is inspired by the Northern European tradition of the Forest – Farm School seeing a resurgence world wide and she is dedicated to moving education out of the classroom and into the land, to make hands-on outdoor education available to kids of all ages.


Sal Blakemore
Mountain Girls, Mountain Biking and Teen Mountaineers Instructor

Sal (they/she) is a beasty wild one. They have a deep love, respect and appreciation for the outdoors; travelling, mountain biking, camping, reading & writing, floating down rivers and wandering through the landscapes of the high desert make up Sal’s self-care system.

After leaving the country for [what was supposed to be] a two-month trip, Sal spent an entire year (May 2018-May 2019) travelling by herself through Australia and New Zealand. Since returning to Santa Fe, Sal has returned to academia to continue their education within the fields of Human Sexuality and LGBTQ+ studies.

Sal has professional backgrounds in outdoor education, human sexuality, education, social work and culinary arts and is fascinated at the intersectionality of it all. Sal aims to inform, empower and inspire youth so that they can make informed decisions about how they choose to move through their own lives.


Gabe Otter
Wildschool Instructor

At the age of five, Gabe looked up at his mom from his car seat, headed north on I-89 through Central Vermont and asked, “What is on the other side of the mountain?” Ever since the question left his lips he has been on a quest to get to the bottom of this mystery. Following his curiosity led him to work for several summer camps in Vermont, took him on a 15 country, 4 year journey during his undergrad with Long Island University Global, and landed him a job teaching bilingual kindergarten at an international school in Chiang Mai, Thailand. His latest adventure was a cross-country road trip that landed him in Santa Fe, which he gratefully now calls home.

Gabe is absolutely elated to be working with young ones in the high desert this year at Mountain Kids! He is particularly excited to tell stories, climb trees and to drink SO much water!


Monique “Mo” Schoustra
Wildschool Instructor

Monique (Mo) Schoustra has a hard time being indoors. She has been guiding cultural and natural history excursions in the southwest for over 20 years.  She enjoys teaching and learning from people of all ages in the outdoor classroom of the Colorado Plateau, and guides for several companies in Utah, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico.

A “child in a very tall body,” she delights in playing, singing, hiking, story telling, story listening and making discoveries outdoors.   Mo is a dedicated life-long learner who continues to broaden her knowledge of the geology, history, archeology, paleontology and ecology of the region.  Her interests have fueled her volunteer work in advocating for public lands protection and access, including the spectacular Valles Caldera National Preserve.

She has been involved with Mountain Kids! in a variety of ways since its inception and looks forward to ongoing adventures with the wonderful kids who bring their enthusiasm, cheer and creative ideas to the program.


Steph Findon
Operations Director, Wildschool and After School Instructor

Stephanie’s love for nature is most evident in how she shares it with others: with patience, respect and infectious enthusiasm! While you’ll be inspired by her remarkable solo travels, such as backpacking John Muir Trail, it’s the spark she’ll awaken within you that you’ll remember.  Steph has spent over a decade dedicated to learning, teaching, and living her love of the outdoors and human connection.  

As a yoga instructor, Steph observed first hand how students self-study can be hampered in a high-profit setting and pivoted both her instruction and studies to the outdoors. In 2016, she founded Mindfulness in the Mountains, a yoga/hiking course set in the mountains outside Los Angeles, and later completed her 500 RYT in an Earth Elements-driven curriculum. 

Her outreach efforts have been consistently focused on youth and kids, with experience spanning from farms in Central America to homeless shelters in Chicago. Steph is particularly driven to share an appreciation for nature with kids at a young age, knowing that’s a pivotal moment for kids to find their own drive to enjoy and protect the Earth.  It’s these same kids who leave her the most inspired and why she’s so excited to be a part of the Mountain Kids team!


Carolyn Shayte
Summer Camp Instructor

Carolyn (they/them) is a multimedia and community artist, poet, and avid nature lover living in Santa Fe, NM with their very fluffy cat, Jewel. They moved to the southwest at the end of 2019 to pursue their M.A. in Art Therapy and Counseling at Southwestern College. They believe having access to and a relationship with nature is important for everyone’s mental health. Plus, Carolyn finds much inspiration for their own art and writing in the outdoors. 

Originally hailing from Baltimore, MD, they previously split their time between working at an art non-profit for adults with disabilities and teaching art and art history to senior adults in various settings. Through this work Carolyn discovered they have enthusiasm for helping people of any age find their inner artist through an affordable and sustainable art practice. They have exhibited work in galleries around the Baltimore area and published poems in The Purple Poetry Book, HYRSTERIA, The Poetry and Fiction Issue of Baltimore City Paper, and more. Carolyn will combine their passion for art, writing, mental health, and the great outdoors in their future therapy practice.