my story

Kilele means "peak" or "summit" in Swahili, the lingua franca of East Africa. The mountains of Kenya and Tanzania are where I learned to climb and learned to shoot — and remain where I learn the most about myself.

 

I was born in Kenya and was raised exploring the bush. My family lived with the Maasai on the border of Tanzania — an American family in a deeply African world. My own story, full of complicated identities and dynamics, always led me to others. That’s why I make my living doing two things: telling stories and helping people find their own.

I’ve contributed to the Alpinist, Climbing/Rock & Ice, Nomad Magazine, Nyayo Magazine, The Boston Globe, Nashville Fit Magazine, the Belmont Vision, The Mukutan Conservancy, Wasafiri Consulting, Outward Bound USA, ShutDownDC and many others. I work in writing, photography, and video.

 

I have taught for leading outdoor educators across the world, including NOLS and the North Carolina Outward Bound School, and have expeditioned across East Africa, the United States, and Patagonia.

I tell stories of grit, growth, and joy — stories of humans finding a home on this remarkable rock we woke up on. I tell stories of the wilderness, which simply means the places that are hard to get to: geographically, historically, socially, spiritually. Stories about how we find purpose and peace at the edges of our comfort zone. I want to share my own; I want to hear yours.