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Meet SheJumps Board Members: Q&A with Sara Boilen

Welcome to the Board of Directors: Sara Boilen. We’re excited to have you and learn more about you.

Q: Tell us a little about yourself.

I grew up hating physical challenges and sleeping on the ground. Once the choice to participate in the outdoors became mine, I developed a passion for adventure and came to discover that I could, in fact, do (and enjoy!) hard things. I'm a mountaineer, a telemark skier, an ultrarunner, and a swimmer and am known to carry desserts of all sorts up mountains to share with friends. I'm drawn to the mission of SheJumps because I believe that all girls and women deserve a spot in the outdoors and a chance to find their voice, strength, joy, courage, or whatever it is they find when they step out of their comfort and jump into something new. I'm a passionate outdoors woman and a feminist and believes that SheJumps’ efforts flow at the confluence of these two values.

As a PsyD., I'm a clinical psychologist by training and the founder and owner of Sweetgrass Psychological, a community minded clinic with the aim of helping Montanans experience mental wellness. There, I work with individuals as they reveal their brightest selves through assessment and therapy. I conducted her dissertation research on the effects of rock climbing on a woman’s sense of hope and courage. I authored the book: Ethics in Rural Psychology: Case Studies and Guidance for Practice.

Q: Place of work, title, location.

A: Sweetgrass Psychological, Owner and Chief Psychologist, Northwest Montana

Q: Why did you join SheJumps as a board member?

A: I joined SheJumps as a board member because I believe that we should all find something we believe in and are passionate about and serve. Communities thrive when members show up and participate. For me, that participation looks like board service. I value the work that SheJumps does and rather than simply supporting it financially or by volunteering at events, I decided that my skills in the field of psychology and child development, my experience on other boards, and my passion for getting people excited about giving money to valuable causes, made me a good candidate. Turns out SheJumps thought so too!

Q: What goal of the SheJumps 5 year Strategic Plan is the most important to you?

A: I am passionate about all of the strategic goals but I would have to say I am currently most inspired by #2: SheJumps is a leading resource of free and low-cost access to outdoor education for girls and women of all backgrounds.

Q: What do you hope to contribute to the SheJumps Board of Directors?

A: Other than money, I hope to contribute my knowledge of board governance, my passion for getting people excited about the mission of SheJumps and dessert.

Q: What is your vision for SheJumps?

A: I envision a well-known organization that has reduces all possible barriers to participation in the outdoors. We contribute to growth and development of the next generation of leaders by inspiring jumping in all aspects of life.

Now, it’s time for the lightning round:

Q: Outdoor activity of choice (pick one, two if you must)?

A: Mountaineering. Swimming.

Q: Who inspires you to go outside and why?

A: My friends Beth and Kim. They are strong and fierce and also not scared to show their vulnerability. I also really just love being with them in the outdoors.

Q: Where is your favorite place to go outside or on an adventure?

A: Glacier National Park’s alpine.

Q: How has the outdoors benefited your health and overall physical, emotional, and spiritual wellbeing?

A: Gosh, how hasn’t it!

I am so strong. I have giant quads and love them!

I am mentally well when I am regularly in the outdoors. I have found bravery and courage that I never knew possible. Every time I climb a mountain I am reminded that I can do hard things.

Follow Sara's adventures on Instagram @mtmaven or @treatsonpeaks.

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