Ava Isaacson is a native Idahoan with a passion for environmental preservation and outdoor recreation. Hired as a Conservation Associate in May, she's the newest addition to the IRU team.
Ava grew up outside of Moscow, but she spent her summers roaming around the Big Lost River Range and catching critters along the banks of the Salmon River when her family camped at Challis Hot Springs for her father's geology work for the University of Idaho. Ava has fond memories of finding any excuse to get outside during her childhood.
Graduating with an undergraduate degree in Environmental Science from the University of Idaho in 2014, Ava spent the following year pursuing interests in environmental education. Her first position in the field was working as an AmeriCorps member for Palouse-Clearwater Environmental Institute in Moscow. Upon completion of her first AmeriCorps term, she and her partner, Alexander, moved to McCall where she began graduate school at the McCall Outdoor Science School (MOSS).
While living in McCall for 16 months, Ava completed a second AmeriCorps term, her master’s project with the McCall Chamber of Commerce and the MOSS requirements for a Master’s of Science in Natural Resources.
While in McCall Ava fell back in love with downhill skiing and indulged in all the outdoor wonders of the area as much as possible. In addition, she worked on a curriculum development contract with Wild Science Explorers, an educational rafting nonprofit. In the name of professional development for the organization, she had the opportunity to go to river and guide school in Washington on the White Salmon and Klickitat Rivers. Even more exciting, she worked as an apprentice through a five-day Hells Canyon trip, a transformative experience for Ava. These immersive river journeys ignited Ava’s love and passions for rivers.
Ava comes to IRU with a life-long love for Idaho’s wild places and a newfound passion for its wild rivers. She is thrilled to apply her loves with a knowledge of the complex environmental landscapes of the West to Idaho Rivers United's long and respected history for river preservation and restoration.
Ava said she cannot wait to meet the Idaho Rivers United community over a dark espresso drink, oar on the water or a fly-rod waist deep in a river.