Christopher Rutgers is the founder of Outdoor Outreach, and now serves as the Executive Director of TYO: Transforming Youth Outdoors. As a competitive skier, whitewater river guide, expedition rock climber and avid surfer, Chris has spent most of his life developing a passion for the outdoors. It was this passion that helped Chris overcome his own at-risk childhood. In 1999, he founded Outdoor Outreach as a means to give at-risk and underprivileged youth the same life-changing opportunities. Drawing from his own personal experiences, Chris developed the Outdoor Outreach program model and philosophies that have proven to be so successful working with at-risk and underprivileged youth. Chris is now spearheading the national initiative TYO, an online learning community created to scale the impact in outdoor youth development and transform the lives of youth by providing best practices, tools and support to individuals and organizations working with youth in the outdoors.
Mr. Rutgers will moderate the Conservation Leadership lightning talks during the SHIFT Summit.
About Transforming Youth Outdoors: We curate, organize and maintain an ever-growing collection of resources–including knowledge, best practices, practical tools and guidance–that help the members of our community deliver impactful outdoor programming to the youth they serve.