The Rustic Team

The Rustic Team

Our exceptional staff members are the backbone of our organization. Their incredibly diverse backgrounds provide us with a profound understanding of the destinations we visit and offer our students one-of-a-kind experiences.

International Staff

Rustic Pathways spans the globe! Most of our staff members are based outside the United States. While the cultural traditions of our team vary from country to country, the shared values that define Rustic Pathways and make them exceptional extend across all borders. Country Operations teams include international and local staff who work together to ensure Rustic students have fun, empowering, and safe experiences with us.

Exceptional Program Leaders

Our Program Leaders have backgrounds in teaching, experiential education, service learning, wilderness training, international development, and other outdoor and educational fields. Each year, we hold in-country training sessions for both new and returning staff to ensure we maintain our standards in safety, student learning, community service, and the overall Rustic Pathways student experience. Program Leaders are incredible role models for students and, most importantly, they are all dedicated to creating the best possible programs for students.

Leadership

Scott Ingram

Director of Admissions

Scott is the Director of Admissions at Rustic Pathways. He has spent the last 15 years in the student travel and experiential education world. Before helping families find the perfect Rustic Pathways program, he led gap year programs that took students around the world and spent three years teaching English in Japan.

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Dr. Will Smith

Medical Director

Dr. Will Smith is a recognized leader in wilderness medicine who joined Rustic Pathways in 2015. He is an EMS and Emergency Medicine Physician who practices primarily in Jackson, Wyoming, but has practiced around the world from Baghdad ER to Easter Island. He is also a Colonel in the US Army reserve and has several other medical director hats from the National Park Service. He has personally participated in Rustic Pathway programs to Kilimanjaro, Fiji, and the Dominican Republic.

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Anna Beckerman

Director of Education

Anna is an alumna of School Year Abroad and has a dual degree in geoscience and Mandarin from Dartmouth. Anna’s passion for experiential education and travel was sparked in high school and furthered in college. She now applies this passion at Rustic Pathways, providing opportunities for teachers and students to immerse themselves in new surroundings and engage powerfully with other cultures. Anna was previously director of our China operations and now resides in San Francisco.

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Nicholas Pompa

Director of Operations

Nick grew up in Boston, and graduated from Babson with a degree in business but has since lived in California, New Zealand and Colorado. Rustic Pathways combines his passions for the outdoors with traveling to experience new places and cultures. He fills his free time in Colorado with skiing, mountain biking, hiking and paddle boarding, but is sure to travel internationally every chance he gets. Today he introduces students to Rustic Pathways and helps them find the perfect program.

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Patrick Ziemnik

Training and Development Manager

Patrick began his career in experiential education as a Harvard student, managing the University’s First-Year Outdoor Program. After graduating with high honors from the Social Studies Department, Patrick continued his passion for social enterprise as an AmeriCorps volunteer. He now brings his strong leadership skills, love of the outdoors, and experience as Country Director in Mongolia and Tanzania to our team of Personal Travel Advisors in Ohio. Patrick’s immense dedication to community partnerships and passion for creating meaningful student experiences continue to shine through in our customer service.

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Candice Jackson

Team Resources Manager

Candice is a graduate of Baldwin Wallace College in Ohio with a degree in business administration, and she recently earned her MBA from Lake Erie College. Candice brings her expertise, kindness, and attention to detail to our human resources department. She assists with the on-boarding of all staff and manages staff benefits and professional development.

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Team

Emily Green

Admissions Counselor

Emily fell in love with travel and experiential learning after high school while taking a gap year in Bolivia and Peru. During her time at the University of Denver, Emily continued to seek out travel programs and opportunities while double majoring in Geography and International Studies. She was grateful for the opportunity to do coursework in Iceland, Greenland, the Faroe Islands, Mexico, and Nicaragua! Since then she has worked in a variety of jobs including outdoor education, refugee services, ESL teaching, and as a Rustic Pathways Program Leader. Emily currently lives in Costa Rica and is passionate about animals (especially turtles!), rock climbing, cooking, and spending time with friends and family.

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Heather Mallinckrodt

Admissions Counselor

Heather has always loved the outdoors and began organizing trips for her family and friends at a young age. She loves exploring the US National Parks and will hike all day just for a good view! For several years before joining Rustic Pathways, she planned group travel and now brings that experience and attention to detail to our student travel team. She believes that allowing students the opportunity to serve and experience cultures outside of their own enhances their understanding of the world and of themselves.

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Zack Kraushar

Medical Screening and Safety Manager

Focusing his academic research on Genocide studies, Zack graduated from Pomona College with a degree in Sociology. Prior to Rustic, with a lifelong passion for travel and education, Zack worked as a high school English teacher in Japan and a historical tour guide in his hometown of New York City. In his time off, Zack has backpacked extensively throughout Europe and Asia, visiting over fifty-five countries thus far. Zack may be spotted running through the park or dancing at a local music festival. A trained Emergency Medical Technician, Zack uses his expertise to keep our students and staff safe throughout their program experience.

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Teryn Williams

Personal Travel Advisor

Teryn is a Michigan native and graduated from Lake Superior State University with a degree in Parks and Recreation. She has always been passionate about Recreation and Travel and is excited to help students find the best program that will positively impact their lives. She currently spends half of the year living in Italy soaking in all of the culture and amazing food. In her free time, Teryn enjoys photography, hiking, kayaking, and taking off on last minute adventures!

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Gabrielle Greenleaf

Personal Travel Advisor

Gabby is a graduate of the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science in Telecommunications. Once she graduated from college, Gabby combined her love for helping others and travel by serving as a humanitarian in Russia. She has traveled to 23 different countries and her goal is to travel to all seven continents. Since then, she has returned to live in Florida and joined the Rustic Pathways team to encourage students to learn more about different cultures through their own personal experience. While not working, Gabby enjoys being in the sun and in the water, going on spontaneous adventures, and traveling the world! 

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Jonathan Moskal

Personal Travel Advisor

Jonathan grew up around Syracuse, New York, leaving at 18 to join the US Air Force. He spent a short career as a Tactical Air Control Party Specialist where he deployed three times to Iraq and Afghanistan. After five years in Colorado with the Air Force, Jonathan left for Maryland and studied government and international relations. He graduated with a Bachelor’s from the University of Maryland and received a graduate certificate from the Institute of World Politics in Washington DC in peace building, stability and humanitarian development. Jonathan later completed his Master’s in finance while living remotely in Costa Rica. He fell in love with the country and currently resides there in the mountains near San Isidro with his wife and three kids. Jonathan is passionate about playing video games and loves to study history.

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Talia White

Personal Travel Advisor

Talia is a recent graduate of Occidental College where she studied International Relations and Food Studies. Talia is a firm believer in the importance of getting out of your comfort zone through exploring new places and cultures and is excited to help Rustic students attain such experiences. Talia loves to travel and try new foods along the way, whether it be in a new neighborhood in her home base of New York City or a market on the other side of the world. You can also find her hiking, playing tennis, reading on a beach, or walking her two labs.

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Heather Love

Personal Travel Advisor

Heather is a graduate of Cleveland State University with a degree in Psychology. Born and raised in Northeast Ohio, her desire to learn new cultures is always satiated with each day working at Rustic Pathways. Her first international travel was with Rustic and helped her be brave enough to travel alone to Ireland and Scotland. When not working, she enjoys reading, taking nature walks and exploring all parts of Ohio.

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Matija Paunovski

Regional Recruitment Director-International

Matija completed an undergraduate degree at Northeastern University, then went on to earn a master’s degree from Harvard. Her expertise in leadership training and recruitment has enabled her to achieve great success within the Rustic Pathways Group Travel division. Her highest priority is that educators and students walk away completely satisfied and fulfilled from their incredible experience. In her free time, Matija enjoys reading, working out, running, and practicing power vinyasa yoga.

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Hannah Claywell

School Partnerships

Hannah’s passion for experiential learning began during her semester abroad in Chile and has only grown since. She earned a master’s degree in higher education with a focus on international education and students affairs, and brings a breadth of experience managing and running group travel programs. At Rustic Pathways, she supports educators in their goals to provide students with opportunities for meaningful community engagement and to foster a sense of global citizenship through our programs. Hannah lives in Chicago, where you can find her playing beach volleyball, running along the lakeshore, or on a quest to find the best dumplings in the city!

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Devon Proctor

School Partnerships

Hailing from the San Francisco Bay Area, Devon’s journey into travel began with a high school study abroad program in Peru, sparking a lifelong passion for exploration. Engaging in outdoor pursuits like backpacking, skiing, climbing, and biking became his driving pursuit. During his time at the University of California, Santa Barbara, Devon found his calling as a student trip leader, guiding peers through nature to impart crucial lessons in independence and empathy. Armed with a degree in film and media studies, he transitioned to the outdoor recreation industry, assuming roles from Whitewater Guide to Freeride Ski Coach. Devon now channels his love of diverse adventures into Rustic Pathways. Eager to contribute his rich leadership and travel background in innovative ways, he aims to enhance the organization’s commitment to fostering students’ personal growth through unique and impactful programs.

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Cameron Edwards

School Partnerships

Cameron has always had a passion for travel. After her first solo trip to Europe, she knew seeing the world was a goal she hopes to accomplish someday. She has been to 29 countries and can’t wait to visit her 30th. She has lived in China, Vietnam, and is currently living in South Africa. Cameron was a teacher in Florida for nine years before moving overseas to work for international schools. Cameron is a graduate of the University of Florida with a degree from the College of Journalism. Besides traveling, she loves trail running, swimming, cycling, hiking, watching college football, and going to the beach.

Kristi Collom

International Business & Development Rep

Kristi is native to NYC with a background in research, expeditionary learning, nonprofit development, youth empowerment, and marine mammal espionage. At City University of New York, she pursued a graduate degree in animal behavior and conservation. She has several published peer-reviewed articles on marine mammal behavioral ecology, population dynamics, conservation, and bioacoustics. Working with coastal communities and areas of limited bandwidth is what inspired her to work in student travel and youth empowerment initiatives. At Rustic Pathways, she leads outreach efforts as the Northeast Regional Manager – supporting and encouraging students to explore other walks of life and garner insight for how they want to make a difference in the world.

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De'Lynn Boyd

Program Curator

De’Lynn started at Rustic Pathways in February of 2022. Her passion of helping children thrive is evident by her multiple trips to Haiti, where she created incredible bonds with children in need.   She is an alumni of Rochester Institute of Technology with a Master’s Degree in Multidisciplinary Studies. As Program Curator, she plans the group travel programs in all detail. In this role, she supports the development of young people’s focus on their part in this world.

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Janette Daneshmand

Social Media Manager

Born and raised in Southern California, a stone’s throw away from the original Disneyland. Janette spent an unforgettable summer in western Europe and Florence on a study abroad program during her time at Cal State Fullerton. In 2016 she moved to Manchester and worked for a craft magazine publisher as a professional crafter and later at a marketing agency that specializes in life science and biotech businesses as a social media manager. She connected deeply with Rustic’s mission of philanthropy, travel, and training students to build the skills they need to create impact.

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Mary Rogelstad

Content Writer

Mary began her career in the international media, where she met people from all over the globe. She particularly enjoyed working with journalists from developing nations who were expanding news coverage in their countries. After this job, Mary helped open a new school that offers the International Baccalaureate Program for younger students and was involved in other educational ventures. She now relishes the opportunity to share information about Rustic travel programs that enable students to gain an international perspective. In her free time, she enjoys musical theater, basketball, track, soccer, and hiking.

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Kayla Anzalone

Director, Special Projects

Kayla is a California native and San Jose State University graduate who loves sunshine, spending time on the coast and in the mountains. She’s always looking forward to her next travel adventure and the food she can try there. At Rustic Pathways, Kayla enjoys helping others discover their passion for travel and experience the profound impacts of interacting with others around the world. She lives in the Bay Area where you can find her enjoying live music, exercising, or cooking.

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Rustic Pathways Staff Alumni

All-Stars

Founded in Australia in 1983, Rustic Pathways is imbued with the ambition and vision of the explorer in the outback. Here are some of the Rustic Pathways team members who have helped make us who we are today.

Staff Alumni