Deborah combines outdoor adventure with youth centered social impact. She is a board member of Discover Outdoors, the founder of #NYCEDU, and a mentor of Young Women Who Crush. Her belief is that by working together, we can ensure that ALL of New York City's young people are equipped to flourish. If you are for championing youth leadership, contributing time, talent, or treasure to community causes, and/or joining a group of adventurists who meet as a monthly climbing crew, you can contact her directly at [email protected].
Carolyn grew up as far away from climbing mountains as you can imagine in the Flatlands of Brooklyn. She grew up in a conservative Irish Italian family - went to Catholic School in Canarsie and hung out in metal bars in Bensonhurst.
Carolyn began climbing at the age of 38 after nearly 4 decades of hating sports and never exercising. Carolyn is a member of the American Mountain Guide Association. She is an SPI. An Apprentice Rock Guide and an Apprentice Alpine Guide. When she is not guiding she works for a residential construction company building houses.
Prior to guiding Carolyn worked as a sex educator in New York City. She was widely sought after appearing on the Today Show, VH1, Bravo and in print in the New York Times, GQ, the Wall Street Journal, Cosmopolitan, and New York Magazine. Carolyn has been a political activist and performer for three decades. She identifies as Queer blue collar and a metalhead. When she’s not working, Carolyn is writing a memoir about growing up in south Brooklyn.
Kareemah , a climbing enthusiast, cancer survivor, amputee, founder of Adaptive Climbing Group (ACG), overall "badass" by friends definition, and unrelenting explorer of human potential. In her late twenties, Kareemah Batts was diagnosed with synovial sarcoma, a super rare cancer that strikes young adults. Rather than endure multiple surgeries to battle the illness, Kareemah opted for amputation of her left leg below the knee. In her recovery, the New York City native discovered a passion for climbing and uncovered a penchant for defying the odds. As founder of the Adaptive Climbing Group, she has provided inspirational pathways for fellow amputees and adaptive climbers to discover the sport and has worked tirelessly to help redefine athleticism in the climbing culture. Kareemah also serves on various committees in the larger national and international outdoor community ( American Alpine, Access Fund, USA Climbing, Color The Crag, etc.) to better improve access and decrease active stigma to those looking to bridge the gap of access to the outdoors and increase conservancy activation.
Lou is a non-binary transgender climber, gymnastics coach, snowboard instructor and photographer based in NYC. Lou started climbing when they moved to NYC four years ago and became obsessed. They are part of a queer climbing group and are working to make space for queer and trans bodies outdoors. Lou is a mentor with Young Women Who Crush and hopes to help young women build friendships and discover their strength through climbing. They coach gymnastics at LIC Kids Gymnastics and are the founder of a Gender-Expansive gymnastics program. Lou is an advocate for trans athletes and is working with USA Gymnastics to write a new Transgender Inclusion Policy for competitive gymnasts. Lou grew up in the mountains and has been snowboarding for 19 years. They spend their winter weekends spreading their love of sliding down hills at Stratton Mountain, Vermont where they teach snowboarding. Lou’s photographic work celebrates LGBTQ+ bodies and personal identity. Their images have been shown at Philadelphia Photo Arts Center, sUgAR Gallery, Brooklyn Grain and Leonard Pearlstein Gallery. Their work has been published in American Photography, Aint-Bad, Autostraddle and BUST Magazine. Their collaboration with lesbian filmmaker Barbara Hammer (1939-2019), Vintage Beinecke, has been shown at the Whitney Museum of American Art and published in the New Yorker Online, Art Forum and Triple Canopy.