Jason Lyle

Jason loves people and loves the outdoors. His life and work experiences are broad, and include teaching middle school social studies in the public school system, working with kids in children’s homes in Georgia, teaching Dalit pastors in India, and working with an orphanage in Uganda creating systems of sustainable economic growth, to name a…

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Jake Stibbe

Jake Stibbe, BFA, is a Wilderness Field Instructor at First Light Wilderness. His primary focus is practicing the CASA model with his students in order to demonstrate and instill the practice of creating healthy relationships. Jake is certified as a Wilderness First Responder and is always attuned to the physical, emotional, and relational safety of…

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Abigail Billingsley

Abbie was born in Texas and fell in love with the outdoors at a very young age. Her passion for the outdoors has led her to explore every rock, river, nook, and cranny that this beautiful world has to offer. Her own experiences with nature as a facilitator of healing led her to pursue wilderness…

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Haley Goodman

Haley grew up on the east coast, spending much of her childhood in the outdoors–hiking, kayaking, camping, swimming, and playing with any animals she could find. She studied Agricultural Science and Environmental Systems at the University of Georgia, where she was a member of the UGA diving team. She applies that level of passion and…

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Brandon Olson

Brandon Olson Portrait

Brandon’s combined passion for service and for the outdoors has been a driving force throughout his career. After graduating with a degree in Outdoor and Environmental Education from Johnson State College in Vermont, Brandon joined the Peace Corp, where he spent 2 years training young service guides in environmental education at a nature reserve in…

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Mycala Cherry, MS, APC, NCC

Mycala Cherry Portrait

Mycala is a nationally certified counselor who comes to First Light Wilderness with a diverse mix of clinical and wilderness experience. She earned her Master of Science in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Georgia State University, and has worked in residential, wilderness, outpatient, and telehealth settings. Mycala is certified in Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training…

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Mary Jo DeGrandi

Mary Jo DeGrandi Portrait

Mary Jo brings more than 20 years of experience in therapeutic settings to her role at First Light Wilderness. She began her career as a child advocate, working with survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault in native Alaskan communities, where she discovered how impactful it could be to provide therapeutic treatment in outdoor settings.…

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Henry Thomas

An avid reader and outdoor enthusiast, Henry spends his free time near the river, in the woods, or reading a book. He began his foray into the outdoor industry through white water rafting on the Chattooga River, where he learned that wilderness can be a powerful force for growth of self-awareness and self-confidence. He gravitated…

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Maureen Fitzgerald

Maureen Fitzgerald, known as “Moe,” is a Lead Field Staff at First Light Wilderness. Her primary focus is providing safety and structure to our students through our treatment model, CASA. Maureen demonstrates this by implementing a fun, healthy environment for students and staff to explore their strengths and weaknesses. Fitzgerald graduated from Western Illinois University…

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