The mission of the Alaska Avalanche School is to provide exceptional experience-based avalanche safety education to all users of the mountain environment.The Alaska Avalanche School (AAS) was founded in 1976 by Doug Fesler, the chief ranger of Chugach State Park, who spent many years recovering the bodies of avalanche victims and wanted to try to stem the rise in avalanche accidents through education. One of the first schools of its type in the country, the AAS gained an international reputation for providing top quality, intensive field-oriented avalanche and mountain safety training for backcountry travelers. In its early years, the School was part of the Snow Avalanche Safety Program under the Alaska Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation. In 1986, when the statewide avalanche program fell victim to budget cuts, Fesler teamed up with Jill Fredston, the director of the newly defunct Alaska Avalanche Forecast Center and co-author of the classic primer Snow Sense: A Guide to Evaluating Avalanche Hazard, to create the Alaska Mountain Safety Center, a nonprofit organization. As part of their mission to promote mountain safety through education, publishing, consulting, and research, they directed the AAS until the winter of 2005-2006 when the Alaska Avalanche School was established as a separate nonprofit organization. With a staff of 37 instructors, the school teaches hundreds of participants each winter season, both in the field and in the classroom.

OUR BOARD

The Alaska Avalanche School’s volunteer Board of Directors is made up of recognized leaders across many areas of expertise. They represent the broad diversity of our community and contribute significant amounts of time, talent, and energy to further the mission of the organization.

Peter Wadsworth : President

Peter Wadsworth

President
Heather Johnson : Vice President

Heather Johnson

Vice President
Andrew Dahlin : Treasurer

Andrew Dahlin

Treasurer
Jessie Janowski : Secretary

Jessie Janowski

Secretary
Alex Lee : Board Member

Alex Lee

Board Member
Andy Moderow : Board Member

Andy Moderow

Board Member
Graham Predeger : Board Member

Graham Predeger

Board Member
Jason Buttrick : Board Member

Jason Buttrick

Board Member
Emily Sullivan : Board Member

Emily Sullivan

Board Member
Eric Dahl : Board Member

Eric Dahl

Board Member
Hazel Blum : Board Member

Hazel Blum

Board Member
Brock Roden : Board Member

Brock Roden

Board Member

OUR STAFF

Get to know the professional instructors at Alaska Avalanche School. Click on an image for a full bio statement.

Melis Coady : Executive Director

Melis Coady

Executive Director
Kakiko Ramos-Leon : Assistant Director / Instructor

Kakiko Ramos-Leon

Assistant Director / Instructor
Brooke Edwards : Staffing Manager / Instructor

Brooke Edwards

Staffing Manager / Instructor
Caleb Rauch : Operations

Caleb Rauch

Operations
Anitra Winkler : Instructor

Anitra Winkler

Instructor
Blaine Smith : Instructor

Blaine Smith

Instructor
Brian Kramp : Instructor

Brian Kramp

Instructor
Chelsea Bomba : Instructor

Chelsea Bomba

Instructor
Christina Twogood : Snowmachine Instructor

Christina Twogood

Snowmachine Instructor
Cory Hughes : Snowmachine Instructor

Cory Hughes

Snowmachine Instructor
Eeva Latosuo : Instructor

Eeva Latosuo

Instructor
Elias Holt : Instructor

Elias Holt

Instructor
Forest Wagner : Instructor

Forest Wagner

Instructor
Fredrik Norrsell : Instructor

Fredrik Norrsell

Instructor
Graham Predeger : Instructor

Graham Predeger

Instructor
George Creighton : Instructor

George Creighton

Instructor
Jake Kayes : Instructor

Jake Kayes

Instructor
Jeff Moskowitz : Instructor

Jeff Moskowitz

Instructor
Karsen Cullen : Instructor

Karsen Cullen

Instructor
Kyle Van Peursem : Instructor

Kyle Van Peursem

Instructor
Lesley Seale : Instructor

Lesley Seale

Instructor
Mark Walters : Instructor

Mark Walters

Instructor
Mike Janes : Instructor

Mike Janes

Instructor
Mike Buck : Snowmachine Instructor

Mike Buck

Snowmachine Instructor
Pat Dryer : Instructor

Pat Dryer

Instructor
Sean “Sully” Sullivan : Snowmachine Instructor

Sean “Sully” Sullivan

Snowmachine Instructor
Sean Fallon : Snowmachine Instructor

Sean Fallon

Snowmachine Instructor
Taylor Guetschow : Instructor

Taylor Guetschow

Instructor