Inspiring a Diverse Outdoors with Ambassador Alexis Martin

Inspiring a Diverse Outdoors with Ambassador Alexis Martin

  • Kami York-Feirn

Photos by Tommy Corey

Alexis Martin is a trailblazer, nature photographer and Ruffwear ambassador, originally from Olympus, WA. In addition to hiking, Alexis is a leader within her community, making her voice heard by speaking on important topics such as diversity and inclusion in the outdoor spaces.

Alexis Nature Photo

Photo of Mount Shuksan by Alexis Martin

Paired with beautiful PNW landscapes, Alexis provides powerful and inspiring messages that challenge the lack of diversity within an industry that is still fighting inequity. 

“I want to inspire future generations of black and brown people to continue to get outside.”

Alexis in snow

Usually accompanied by her dogs Shelby, Cookie and Lulu, Alexis loves exploring and documenting her travels through the mountains of Central Oregon and Northern Washington. In 2021, Alexis was featured in a film titled “I Do This Too” where she spoke her truth about being a black woman in outdoor spaces. 

“I’m taking up space doing all of the sports outside that we grew up saying ‘black people don’t do that, black people don’t do this and that.’ I’m changing the narrative, showing them we do do that, we have done that and we’re gonna keep doing that.”

Alexis with pup serious

Beyond the outdoors and her connection to nature, Alexis speaks graciously about her own Black History and the importance of remembering those who came before her. 

“Someone who is close to me who is important in Black History and has experienced it is clearly my Grandfather. He’s told me many stories about discrimination while growing up, being in the army, and being in an interracial marriage.”

Her Grandpa, or as she fondly refers to him, “Grand Daddy,” grew up in New York. At 81 years of age, he and Alexis talk about his childhood and the racial injustices that existed then and today. 

Alexis and Grand Daddy NP

“A month is not enough to learn the history of Black people,” Alexis says, reinstating the importance that beyond the month of February, we should continue to recognize, support and celebrate Black History. 

Lovingly, she adds about her Grand Daddy, “He’s the reason why I’m a tough b*tch today.”

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