Please welcome our newest staff member, Bethany Overfield. Bethany is stepping into the large shoes being vacated with the retirement of Carla Miner. Both Bethany and Carla are working together through the month of December to ensure a smooth membership services transition. All of us at American Whitewater are going to miss Carla’s steady and consistent response to member questions and we wish her the best for her world travels in retirement. We are thrilled to have Bethany step into her new role with American Whitewater.
Meet Bethany, she has been an outdoor adventurer for most of her life, but wasn’t exposed to whitewater until she was in her early 30s. Once she started kayaking, she went on a multi-year stint where she only thought in terms of navigating through life on the water. She was forced to slow down after a couple of bad shoulder injuries, however, and now finds joy in being on or near any river, creek, or lake. She’s an avid mountain biker, paddler, reader, gardener, traveler, and observer.
Raised in Kentucky, she earned a B.S. double majoring in geology and geography from Western Kentucky University and later earned an M.S. degree in geology from the University of Kentucky. Bethany spent the first part of her professional career as a research geologist at the Kentucky Geological Survey working on derivative maps focusing on the impact of geology on human health. She can talk about river morphology for hours and will continue to nerd out on rocks for the rest of her life. She serves as a science advisor and on the Board of Directors for the Kentucky River Watershed Watch and is on the Board of Directors for the Bluegrass Chapter of the Kentucky Mountain Bike Association. Bethany was heavily involved in the National Paddling Film Festival in various roles as Director, Volunteer Coordinator, Donor and Sponsor liaison, and Emcee from 2010-2017. Her exposure to working with every facet of the whitewater community compelled her to switch careers and hop on the AW train.
Bethany loves working with people and will always be accessible to all the members of AW —don’t hesitate to reach out to her. She knows that people are more compelled to protect that to which they are exposed and thinks American Whitewater’s mission is incredibly important in getting people out on our splendid rivers and creeks all across the country.
Bethany is based in Lexington, KY, but travels around quite a bit.