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34520 US HWY 6, C10, Edwards, CO 81632   ||  P.O. Box 4613, Edwards, CO 81632   ||   970.949.9250   ||

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Michelle Hartel Stecher
Executive Director

Michelle joined Mountain Youth in February 2011 as the Executive Director, due to her commitment to providing positive youth development opportunities and strengthen collaborative efforts in Eagle County. Prior to her work with Mountain Youth, Michelle managed experiential learning programs for SOS Outreach, taught at an emergency preschool in Boulder and served with underprivileged families in diverse environments throughout North America. Michelle

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Mikayla Curtis
Manager of Strategic Impact

Mikayla joined the Mountain Youth team in March 2014, bringing a passion for positive youth development and community development. She is committed to enhancing supports for youth and families, and ensuring a space for the youth voice. Previously, Mikayla oversaw leadership development programs in outdoor adventure settings, managed high school afterschool programs and managed a community resource office. Mikayla grew up in Eagle

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Hillary Higgins M.A.
Safe Driving Coordinator

Hillary joined Mountain Youth in December 2018. Born and raised in Vail, Hillary has a degree in Sociology with a minor in Mexican American Studies and Master of Arts degree in Sociology from the University of Northern Colorado. While in graduate school, she developed a variety of programs focused on the arts. She pursued a career in Denver working with troubled youth and adults as a group facilitator for court mandated classes, facilitating drug and alcohol classes, female offender groups and

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Heather Hower
Marketing and Special Events Coordinator

Heather joined Mountain Youth in September 2016 as the Events and Marketing Coordinator. Heather has a wealth of nonprofit experience, working at the Vail Valley Foundation, YouthPower365 and the Red Ribbon Project over the past few years. She collaborates with other nonprofits, fostering strong relationships and creating inspired, fun events. Heather also oversees all communication projects for Mountain Youth. 

Carol Johnson
Community Education Manager 

Carol joined Mountain Youth in August 2015 as the Community Engagement Coordinator and is currently serving as the Community Education Manager. An Eagle County resident since 1989, Carol has held a variety of marketing and public relations positions for several organizations including Vail Resorts and Slifer Designs. As a mother of three, Carol brings personal experience and passion to her work. She has also worked directly with local youth in various settings including Beaver Creek Resort

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Denise Kipp

Denise began formally working with Mountain Youth in September 2017 as Prevention Manager, although she had worked in partnership with Mountain Youth as the Director of the Red Ribbon Project. Denise was born and raised just outside of New York City, finished her Masters Degree at Iona College and began teaching high school science in Manhattan. After a short ski trip to Vail, she decided it was time to make a change and moved to Eagle County in

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Gerardo Lopez
Youth Advisor/
Office Assistant

Gerry joined Mountain Youth in September 2017 as Youth Advisor and Office Assistant. Gerry is a graduate of Eagle Valley High School and has an associates in business administration from Colorado Mountain College. Gerry believes the best way to make an impact with the youth is through genuine relationship building and opportunities for them to thrive in the field they want to pursue. Gerry was born in Mexico, but came to the United States ate the age of six. Gerry is pursuing his bachelor's degree in business administration at Colorado Mountain College.

Sandy Schroeder
Communities That Care Coordinator 
& Valley’s Voice Liaison 

Sandy joined the Mountain Youth team in June 2018 with robust experience in education as a teacher and administrator. In her past, she has taught prevention classes, French and special education. She also spent 8 years as a principal in two rural middle schools in New England. She taught English as a Second Language for Colorado Mountain College for 3 years, and she taught in Eagle County Schools for 8 years. Sandy holds Master's degrees in International Relations, French, Educational Leadership and Educating

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