Meet WTA's New CEO: Jaime Loucky
From growing up in the foot of the North Cascades to taking on the leadership of WTA, learn why Jaime is passionate about WTA's vision and community.
Meet WTA's new Chief Executive Officer, Jaime Loucky. Jaime came to WTA as our first chief impact officer three years ago and has been leading our organization as interim CEO since mid-2022. We asked Jaime to reflect on what brought him to WTA, and what hopes he has for our work in the coming years.
Here's what he had to say:
by Jaime Loucky
As the new CEO of Washington Trails Association, I want to take a minute to introduce myself and say how thrilled I am to be leading our organization forward. Now that I'm formally starting this new role, I wanted to reach out to the WTA community and express my gratitude for all you do for WTA.
Here’s a little about me and why I’m so passionate about WTA.
My love of the outdoors started early, growing up in Bellingham. I have so many wonderful memories of hiking and backpacking throughout the Pacific Northwest, and particularly in the North Cascades. I’ve been fortunate enough to have explored a variety of landscapes around the world, and I can honestly say that what we have in Washington is special.
Most recently, I've had the pleasure of helping my daughter, Sasha Luz, discover Washington’s many natural wonders. Seeing her sense of awe and delight in the outdoors has redoubled my commitment to ensuring that everyone has opportunities to benefit from nature and green spaces.
Working together to create trails for everyone, forever.
I was first drawn to WTA by our long-term vision of trails for everyone, forever. But what has truly impressed me is how the WTA community continues to grow and come together to build a better future for trails and public lands.
Over the past three years, I helped lead our organization’s efforts to put our strategic plan into practice — including creating trail systems that stand the test of time and nurturing a hiking community that is truly welcoming and representative. Despite the many challenges of the last few years, WTA has thrived and has continued to evolve to meet the changing needs of hikers.
With your help, I am excited to continue this work. In addition to my passion for trails and the outdoors, I bring more than two decades of professional experience in the public and private sectors. My areas of expertise include helping organizations scale up their work by finding innovative solutions to complex problems — and helping mission-driven organizations expand their impact by investing in people, partnerships, and program excellence. I'm excited to apply these same skills in service of Washington’s incredible trails and hiking community.
A voice for trails and a conduit for hikers and everyone who loves the outdoors.
WTA is in a unique place as an organization. We’ve become a leading voice for trails not just in Washington state, but across the country. In recent years, we've quadrupled in size and impact. But the volume of need, demand for and appreciation of our work, has grown even faster. Even as more people discover the benefits of spending time in nature, investment in recreation infrastructure hasn’t kept up. To navigate this disparity, WTA must continue exploring new ways of protecting and maintaining trails, ensuring access to a variety of landscapes and empowering hikers to be stewards and champions of these important places while celebrating the many benefits that trails and nature bring to our lives.
We go farther together.
Every day I am grateful for the incredible WTA community — from members to dedicated volunteers, partner organizations, staff and board. Our shared passion, vast range of experiences and variety of backgrounds all come together to create a strong foundation for recreation in Washington. Building community is core to everything that WTA does and is ultimately what makes our organization unique. I am honored to be a part of this and grateful to each of you for all you do to protect trails. I invite you to continue this journey with me and be a part of this powerful collection of voices. Together we can create trails for everyone, forever.
I am looking forward to the adventure.
Rachel Wendling on Meet WTA's New CEO: Jaime Loucky
Congrats Jaime! 🎉
Rachel Wendling on Jan 12, 2023 04:24 PM
VerkistT on Meet WTA's New CEO: Jaime Loucky
I would love to hear what your beliefs are regarding diversity in WTA.
VerkistT on Jan 12, 2023 06:33 PM
Washington Trails Association on Meet WTA's New CEO: Jaime Loucky
Great question, thanks for asking! Expanding diversity on trail and continuing to make the outdoors a safe, welcoming and inclusive place for all are two of the things I’m most passionate about in my new role.
As a mixed race person of color I know how much joy spending time in the outdoors has brought to my life. I think one of the most important things we can do as a hiking community is to help new communities and new generations experience the wonders of time in nature and build their personal connections to the outdoors.
I am enormously proud of the work WTA has been doing for the last several years to make both our organization and the broader hiking community more welcoming to all people, through things like our Outdoor Leadership Training programs and gear lending libraries, our shared identity work parties and our Emerging Leaders Program. You can read more about our diversity, equity and inclusion work here - https://www.wta.org/news/signpost/what-weve-learned-in-our-work-toward-diversity-equity-and-inclusion.
Building community is at the heart of all we do at WTA, and the more our community grows and reflects the rich diversity of our state in all aspects — gender, age, race, background, ability and more — the stronger we will be and the more sustainable, equitable and inclusive the outdoors will be. I am committed to continuing and expanding these efforts.
I hope this helps give you a bit more insight into my thinking and passions in this area. Happy to talk with you more about this if you have other questions, feel free to send me an email, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Washington Trails Association on Jan 13, 2023 11:06 AM
VerkistT on Meet WTA's New CEO: Jaime Loucky
Thank you for sharing you beliefs and passions about diversity.
Inclusivity and equity are a passion of mine and I’m so happy to hear they are for you too.
WTA has been a life changer for me. I have always felt welcomed and safe. I love the community, the work and WTA’s commitment to protecting our wilderness and making it accessible to all people.
VerkistT on Jan 13, 2023 11:33 AM