The Continental Divide Trail Coalition (CDTC) formed in 2012 after the closure of the Continental Divide Trail Alliance (CDTA). When the CDTA closed, Bryan Martin, Kerry Shakarjian, Josh Shusko, and Teresa Martinez, all previous employees and colleagues at the CDTA, realized we couldn’t let the grassroots effort to support the Continental Divide Trail crumble on our watch. So together we formed the CDTC.
Our goal was to bring together the grassroots community who cared not only about the CDT but believed in creating an organization that could support the CDT in perpetuity. On June 14, 2012 the CDTC incorporated and launched with $4 from Josh Shusko’s dining room table.
At CDTC, we are blessed to work with such passionate and supportive companies and partners. Big Agnes is one of those companies that not only provides support, but they also roll up their sleeves and literally dig in the dirt. In this way, Big Agnes exemplifies the types of relationships we like to build with our partners – it’s not just a one-way direction or one-time event – it is a long-term relationship that brings both of our strengths to the table and affects both parties in ways that help us be better, stronger, and grow together in a unique and special way. We have only begun to tap the creativity, passion and innovation that each of us bring to the relationships.
Corporate partnerships provide an avenue for companies who make the gear our supporters use to play an active role in the work we do and participate in even more ways to the stewardship of our public lands. We know not every company will be like Big Agnes or some of our other partners who live near the CDT, or where the CDT is in their literal “backyard”, but we know that every little bit of support helps us protect the CDT. We Hope that all of our existing partners and potential future partners understand that we want real, meaningful relationships that help us showcase the CDT for the right reasons, and help us continue to protect this amazing landscape to maintain and create even more access to the CDT for all those who choose to experience it.
Any organization or future partner can reach out to us here at the CDTC. We welcome and invite you to brainstorm and get creative with us about how to align our organization’s mission and core values to support the CDT, engage more supporters into the CDT Community, and inspire continued stewardship of our public lands.
For much of her 30 year professional career, Teresa Martinez has worked throughout our entire National Trails System. From 1987-2007 she worked for the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, from 2007 to 2012 she worked for the Continental Divide Trail Alliance and since 2012 she has been the Executive Director (and co-founder) of the Continental Divide Trail Coalition. She serves on the board of the Partnership for the National Trails System and currently serves as the Chair of the Federal Advisory Committee to aide the USFS in the development of the Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail. When not working on behalf of one of our National Trails, Teresa may be found exploring trails with her dog by bike, horse, and foot.