Lisa Szela

Volunteer Support Coordinator

Lisa plans, promotes, and executes a wide range of tasks as an active, engaged liaison between volunteers and staff members. 

Ice Age Trail Alliance, Ice Age Trail, Lisa Szela, Volunteer Support CoordinatorLisa is the initial point of contact for Alliance volunteers. She regularly meets in person with the Alliance’s 19 volunteer chapters to learn about their activities and needs for Alliance support. In addition, she coordinates volunteer orientation and training sessions, regional volunteer meetings, and the annual Chapter Leadership Summit.

Lisa’s involvement with the Alliance began as a segment hiker. She quickly set her sights on becoming a Thousand-Miler. She also volunteered with chapter-led land stewardship efforts and MSC trailbuilding events. In 2022, she accepted the Volunteer Support Coordinator position with the Alliance.

Before joining the Alliance, Lisa worked as a research coordinator at the University of Wisconsin School of Pharmacy and a member of the Overdose Prevention Team at Public Health Madison & Dane County.

Lisa grew up in a small town “just north of Green Bay,” where she, her sister, and her cousins spent hours outdoors climbing trees. They also learned to navigate brush, catch crayfish in the river, and build snow forts in the yard. As an adult, she re-discovered her love for the outdoors while living in La Crosse, Wisconsin, taking advantage of all the opportunities for outdoor recreation among the bluffs and along the Mississippi River.

After completing a Bachelor of Science in Cell and Molecular Biology from Winona State University and determining a career in healthcare wasn’t a good fit, she found the Ice Age Trail. The yellow blazes pointed the way ahead and ultimately led to her current role.