"I feel the greatest sense of gratitude and responsibility for this opportunity to lead an iconic organization and its members, the Mazamas. With my identity forged in high mountain places, stewarding our collective mission to inspire everyone to love and protect the mountains speaks to me deeply." – said Mitsu
Mitsu arrives at the Mazamas with nearly three decades of experience in the outdoor industry. His career started in 1996 as an assistant instructor for Outward Bound. From there, he spent the next ten years working as instructor and guide, climbing, skiing, and traversing mountains and mountain ranges from the Southern Sierras to the North Cascades. Transitioning from field-based to administrative roles, he has been the Director for Operations and Safety for Big City Mountaineers in Denver, Colo., Executive Director for Northwest Outward Bound School in Portland, Ore., and most recent served as Interim CEO for the Association for Experiential Education, and Partner at the Outdoor Policy Outfit based in Seattle.
In addition to his professional roles, Mitsu has been very active in our local and national community as a board and committee member with organizations such as Outward Bound, Big City Mountaineers, American Leadership Forum, Friends of Gateway Green, Paradox Sports, and the Free Forest School among many others.
Mitsu brings professional experience in the nonprofit sector with exposure to teaching/instruction, program development and evaluation, operations, safety, finance, budgeting, fundraising, and board relations. He has extensive experience in conservation, outdoor education, training climbers, and youth outreach, and development.
When not in the office, Mitsu can be found climbing, running, and skiing high peaks in the Northwest and around the world.
We look forward to hearing more updates as Mitsu joins the Mazamas team.
Founded in 1894 on the summit of Mt. Hood, the Mazamas is a nonprofit mountaineering education organization located in Portland, Oregon. The Mazamas offer over 700 hikes and 350 climbs annually. A variety of classes and activities are offered for every skill and fitness level and are open to both members and nonmembers.
The Mazamas promotes climbing, responsible recreation, and conservation values through outdoor education, advocacy, and outreach.
About Valtas Group
Valtas Group works as Interim Executive Directors, supporting organizations in times of transition and helps organizations navigate uncertainty during leadership change.
Valtas Group also leads the search process in partnership with the board and staff leadership, as consultants for recruiting and search to support organizations identify the ideal Executive Director or leader.
Valtas Group partners with board members and senior nonprofit leaders on a variety of strategic consulting assignments. Valtas Group has a variety of comprehensive resources to guide your transition needs. Contact us to learn about executive interim and placement services.
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