Our Lodge and Program Managers are the people on the scene at Alaska Wildland Adventures. These are the folks who make sure each and every experience you have with us is special and unique. This team is friendly, hardworking, and committed to providing you with the best Alaska Wildland Adventures has to offer.
John Beye, Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge Manager
John grew up exploring the lakes, forests and rivers of Wisconsin, but summer road trips to the Western U.S. as a kid quickly sparked a passion for life in the mountains. Amidst many adventures skiing, sea kayaking, backpacking and rock climbing, John earned a graduate certificate in Outdoor Education in Grand Teton National Park and completed his Master’s degree in Sustainable Tourism Management at Colorado State University. His true passion is exposing students of all ages to the wilderness in responsible and respectful ways. This career path has led him to South Africa, India, Norway, Seattle, Lake Tahoe and, of course, Alaska. After guiding for Alaska Wildland Adventures, it became clear that one summer simply wasn’t enough. John couldn’t be more thrilled to spend another season in enchanted Aialik Bay at Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge!
Kevin Blackwell, Kenai Backcountry Lodge Manager
Kevin is originally from Thomasville, North Carolina (also known as The Chair City). Now the Kenai Backcountry Lodge Manager, he has been guiding and managing for Alaska Wildland Adventures for many summers and has spent winters in Utah, Antarctica, Nepal and Thailand. Kevin says, “I still remember the first morning I arrived in Alaska. It was barely 3 a.m. but the sun was up and the mountains were glowing. As I walked around town, I remember stopping sleepy-eyed and thinking, ‘What peculiar statues.’ When they started moving, I realized I had stumbled onto a cow moose and calf. I still feel the magic of that first morning every time I come back home to AWA for the summer.”
Michelle LeFever, Lodge Combination Coordinator
Michelle and her husband, Johnny Hughes, are originally from Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Johnny owned a small construction company and she was a manager in a linens company as well as a server/bartender at a corner bistro. Even in Lancaster they spent as much time as they could in the outdoors, either fishing at their cabin on the Susquehanna River or driving to nearby states to satisfy their addiction to whitewater kayaking. About eight years ago, their adventures brought them to Alaska to visit friends living in Moose Pass, and the seed was planted. Shortly after arriving home from that vacation, they sold their business, quit their jobs, and set their sights north. They took their love for one another and the outdoors, purchased a 24-foot travel trailer, grabbed the dog, and headed up the Al-Can Highway to Seward, Alaska. Michelle joined the AWA family working as the office manager for Weather Permitting and Johnny traded his whitewater kayak for a sea kayak, guiding in Resurrection and Aialik Bays. Last year Michelle took the position of Lodge Combination Coordinator. Michelle says, “Each year brings a chance to learn something new, see something completely breathtaking, make an incredible memory, discover a little more about ourselves and share our experiences with others in hopes that they will be as wowed and excited about Alaska as we are.”