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Mt. Adams Institute Receives $1.1 Million in AmeriCorps Funding

Mt. Adams Institute Receives AmeriCorps Grant to Continue Programs


Trout Lake, WA – Mt. Adams Institute has received a $1,119,904 grant from AmeriCorps the federal agency responsible for national service and community volunteerism.

This funding will support up to 95 AmeriCorps members across the country participating in Mt. Adams Institute’s career development programs: VetsWork Environment, VetsWork GreenCorps and Public Lands Stewards. These programs are designed to improve recreation, access, and conservation of our natural resources, while launching military veterans and young adults into careers within the public lands management field.

This AmeriCorps grant will allow us to build on a successful history of helping military veterans and young adults find meaningful careers with public lands agencies and other natural resource organizations,” said Brendan Norman, Executive Director of Mt. Adams Institute.

Mt. Adams Institute AmeriCorps members serve on conservation projects such as trail maintenance; visitor engagement, wildlife research, environmental education, geographic information mapping, invasive species monitoring, and community volunteer coordination.

This grant comes as a direct result of the success of the program. Since 2014, 81% of VetsWork participants who completed the program have been offered employment within the field. With this growth, Mt. Adams Institute looks forward to establishing new local partnerships and providing more opportunities for veterans and young adults to experience the outdoors while shaping their career path.

AmeriCorps will provide an additional $470,000 in Segal AmeriCorps Education Awards for the AmeriCorps members funded by this grant. After completing a full term of service, AmeriCorps members receive an award of approximately $6,300 that they can use to pay for college or to pay off student loans.

For the past year, thousands of AmeriCorps and AmeriCorps Seniors members across all 50 states and U.S. territories have continued their service, quickly adapting to meet the changing needs caused by the pandemic. Dedicated members have persisted to support communities as they respond and recover from the impact of COVID-19, developing new ways to deliver the same services to keep both themselves and those they serve safe.

The recently passed American Rescue Plan includes an additional $1 billion for AmeriCorps. The agency will use this investment to expand national service programs into new communities and increase the opportunity for all Americans to serve their country.

Every year, 75,000 AmeriCorps members serve through thousands of nonprofit, community and faith-based organizations across the country. These citizens have played a critical role in the recovery of communities affected by disasters and helped thousands of first-generation college students access higher education. They also tutor and mentor young people, connect veterans to jobs, care for seniors, reduce crime and revive cities, fight the opioid epidemic, and meet other critical needs.

As the federal agency for volunteering and service, AmeriCorps brings people together to tackle the county’s most pressing challenges. Since the agency’s inception in 1994, nearly 1.2 million AmeriCorps members have served the nation.

Mt. Adams Institute matches the grant funding with additional support from project partners, including but not limited to the U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Columbia River Gorge National Fish Hatchery Complex, King Conservation District, Oregon State Parks, Willamette Resources and Education Network, and Willamette Riverkeeper.

Locally, VetsWork and Public Lands Stewards AmeriCorps members have provided over 42,000 hours of service at local Gorge sites over the past five years including the Conboy Lake National Wildlife Refuge, Columbia River Gorge National Fish Hatchery Complex, Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area, and the Gifford Pinchot and Mt. Hood National Forests.

Mt. Adams Institute is a nonprofit organization with a mission to strengthen the connection between people and the natural world through education, service learning, career development and research. More information about the organization can be found at:

AmeriCorps is a federal agency that engages millions of Americans in national service programs. For more information, visit .

Chris Sutherland

I grew up in Santa Cruz, California. I love hiking, digging around in the dirt and playing with plants. I served in the United States Coast Guard as a Machinery Technician and a shipboard Fire Fighter from 1997 to 2001. I have a B.S. in Science from Portland State University focusing on environmental studies and geography. I have been married almost thirty years and have two sons.
I wanted to return for a third term with MAI because I love working in and for the environment. I’m thrilled to be working with the group here at Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership (LCEP) and their many projects. I’m hoping to gain new experiences in wetland delineation and habitat restoration. I enjoy working with the communities, supporting volunteer events and being a good steward of this planet.

Dan Hofmann

I grew up in SE Portland, graduated from Clackamas High in 2009, joined the Marine Corps in 2010 and served with 1st ANGLICO. I started attending Oregon State in 2016 studying Ecological Engineering. I joined as an AmeriCorps intern because I want to get some hands-on experience working outdoors, and I hope to make contacts in the ecological field along with useful knowledge for habitat restoration.

Roman Miles

I’m Roman Miles and I’m originally from Ventura, CA. I’ve lived in Maui in the 70’s as a young boy, Oklahoma as a teenager and from there, I enlisted in the Army at 18. Boot Camp in Ft. Leonard Wood changed my life forever. Continue Reading…

Sarah Russo

My family moved a lot growing up, but we always came back to Oak Harbor, Washington where I spent most of my life. I believe living in Oak Harbor on beautiful Whidbey Island has a lot to do with my love for the outdoors and passion for the environment. Continue Reading…

Mason Boomgarden

My Name is Mason Boomgarden. I have grown up and currently live in Mankato, MN. I grew up in Scouting and going on camping trips every other weekend. Continue Reading…

Joe Simpson

I grew up in a suburb of Akron, OH right outside the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, where I gained a deep love and appreciation for the outdoors. Continue Reading…

Amanda Williams

Hello world! My name is Amanda Williams, and I have the great pleasure of working with the Mt. Adams Institute, VetsWork family as a Public Outreach Specialist in Cordova, AK! Continue Reading…

Ryan Toth

My name is Ryan Toth, and I’m from Garden Valley, California. I grew up in a fairly rural environment, hunting, fishing, trapping, camping, and working construction. Continue Reading…

William Maness

My name is William, but everyone calls me Billy. I grew up in St. Louis, MO, and joined the United States Navy as a Corpsman in 2010 and separated in 2018. Continue Reading…

Yuri Gerber

My name is Yuri Gerber, and I grew up in Arkadelphia, Arkansas. I was in the boy scouts from an early age and earned the rank of eagle scout my senior year in high school. Continue Reading…

Victor Pinero

My name is Victor Manuel Pinero Pabon, currently 31 years old. I was born in Fayetteville, NC,  and  I moved back to Puerto Rico when I was four years old. Continue Reading…

Tyler Daugherty

Hello, my name is Tyler Daugherty, and I was born and raised in Crossville, Tennessee. I joined the United States Air Force in 2016 after graduating high school and was stationed at Hurlburt Field Air Force Base in Mary Esther, Florida, for four years. Continue Reading…