Learn More about Our Unique, Nationally Recognized Learning Environment


The 2015 Outdoor Afro Leaders

The 2015 Outdoor Afro Leaders


In 2013, Outdoor Afro convened a team of 13 individuals in Clearlake, California. Inspired by founder Rue Mapp’s invitation to build a broader community and leadership in nature, participants traveled from around the country to contribute to a curriculum grounded in relevant engagement, risk management, conservation and community organizing. The team was introduced to select outdoor industry partners and collaborated with them on relevant messaging for their product. Following the training, newly minted Outdoor Afro Leaders returned home, and leveraged nature to grow healthier families, neighborhoods, churches, and cities.

Today, Outdoor Afro reviews hundreds of applications annually and selects 65 individuals to join our nationally recognized team. Driven by the same enthusiasm and commitment to serve, leaders come together to connect to each other and acquire tools to lead creative and relevant outdoor adventures.

The 2016 Outdoor Afro Leaders at Yosemite National Park

The 2016 Outdoor Afro Leaders at Yosemite National Park


Our training locations are carefully selected to leverage our environment and integrate our tailored instruction into activities including

  • Camping
  • Wildlife Engagement
  • Hiking
  • Birdwatching
  • Watershed Exploration
  • Nature Photography
  • Geology
  • Trail Running
  • Sunrise Yoga
  • Stargazing
  • Campfire Activities

A Yoga Break



“I love our partners! Having them attend and present at the Outdoor Afro Leadership Training enabled me to develop a personal relationship with their representatives and grow more confident in speaking about the gear. I have tried and trust their products, and I know that their values align with Outdoor Afro and therefore my own. I’ve already begun talking to family, friends and classmates.” 

Each year, Outdoor Afro invites select premium outfitters to attend our training and engage with our leadership team. Our partners present on the value alignment between their brand and Outdoor Afro. Our leaders become technical experts on gear selection and messaging and model gear to their participants across the country in relevant and impactful ways.

Outdoor Afro is deeply grateful to sponsors including REI, KEEN Footwear, Klean Kanteen,  Columbia, Go RVing, National Wildlife Federation – California, The North Face, Osprey,  US Fish and Wildlife Service and Yakima.

If you’d like to learn more about becoming an Outdoor Afro partner or sponsor please contact Outdoor Afro Strategic Partnership Director, Matthew Reese matt@old-outdoor-afro.k31u286g-liquidwebsites.com.

Training Locations

Past training locations have included Marconi Conference Center, Point Reyes National Seashore, National Training Conversation Center, Harpers Ferry National Park and Yosemite National Park

In 2019, we are excited to convene at the National Conservation Training Center in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. (Travel costs covered by participant).


Individuals interested in applying to join our team, should visit to our recruitment page to complete an application and learn about our program.