ANNEMARIE DOMPE

Annemarie grew up calling two very different California ecosystems home. Raised in the floodplains of the Central Valley, she also inherited a love of the Central Coast, where her great-grandparents had put down roots. Hours spent exploring the touch pools at the Monterey Bay Aquarium became formative for her, and her first work experience was as a student guide there during her teenage years. Weaving connections—whether it be between people to each other, to place, to plants, to the past —has been her driving force throughout her career. In the last five years, she has reconnected to doing this work in the context of environmental education. In her most recent position, she worked at a restored wetland adjacent to San Francisco’s only Superfund site, connecting youth to the history of struggle by grassroots organizers of color fighting for environmental justice, and to the lessons of resilience offered by the plants and animals of that place. As a queer white woman, she feels privileged to frequently encounter people working in this field who look like her, and recognizes that many who claim minority identities do not have this experience. While acknowledging the importance of representation for groups who experience marginalization in outdoor spaces, she also envisions moving beyond mere representation towards agency for those historically dispossessed of restorative connection with nature. She hopes that being a part of this cohort will help her co-create powerful coalitions that protect and expand access to such connection for all.