Kate Svitek Memorial Foundation
Kate Svitek Memorial Foundation

"Although I didn't make it to the summit of Mt. Rainier that sunrise, near the top of the world, gave me a new perspective on life. I realized the importance of challenging one's own limits and ingenuity even if you are not able to achieve a goal. That sunrise placed into me a sense of wonder that had nothing to do with whether or not I made it to the summit. It is not always necessary to achieve an ultimate goal, because the reward of self satisfaction was enough from within. "
- Kate Svitek


The Kate Memorial was established in Spring, 2002 shortly after Kate died on Mt. Bachelor in a snowboard accident. The Foundation's mission is to provide financial support to individuals, groups, and various institutions whose interests and goals align with Kate's hopes and dreams. The primary focus is to promote and underwrite a range of activities and education principally related to outdoor and wilderness exploration study, observation, preservation, improvement, expansion, and enhancement.

Past Recipients

Since our inception, we have awarded grants to over 53 different organizations, including:

Pajorito Environmental Education Center

Camp Kesem

Roots & Wings Community School

Paddle Without Pollution

Russell Byers Charter School

Camp Thunderbird South Dakota

Robin's Park Envionmental Education Center

National Outdoor Leadership School

Green Valleys Assoication

Wissahickon Charter School

Pennsylvania Horticultural Society

Riverbend Environmental Education Center

New Heights Academy

Urban Blazers

Community Academy of Philadelphia

Schuylkill Nature Center

Neighborhood Bikeworks

Boys Latin Charter School of Philadelphia



No Barriers

Los Angeles Waterkeeper

Benscreek Canoe Club

Gateway to the Great Outdoors

Grow Portland

Des Moines County Conservation


Harris Center for Conservation Education

Lee G. Simmons Conservation Park

Project USE

New England Science and Sailing Foundation

Franklin School of Innovation

Baltimore Yearly Meeting

Exploring New Horizons Outdoor Schools

Phipps Conservancy

Center for Aquatic Sciences

First Descents

Central PA Conservancy

I-Lead Charter School

University of Vermont

North Carolina Outward Bound

Sauve Island Center

Camp Attaway

New Jersey Academy of Aquatic Sciences

College Settlement Camp

West Virginia University - Parkersburg

Venture Outdoors

Boys & Girls Club of Philadelphia

Eric Weihenmayer, Touch the Top

Camp Rainbow, Montgomery County PA

Monarch Academy

Chipping Hill Micro Farms

Grassy Waters Conservancy

Bucks County Audubon Society

Something Good In The World Inc.


Volunteers at Sippican Elementary

100 Elk Outdoor Center

Roanoke Outside Foundation

Laketrails Base Camp

Great Schools Partnership

North Cascades Institute

The Life School of Atlanta

Get Outside Utah



Letters from Participants

Over the years, we have received many thank you notes from students who have participated in programs supported by the Foundation. We are so proud of their achievements and we wanted to share a few here:

Ethan from UVM
A Poem by Ariana Velez of North Carolina Outward Bound
Genesis from North Carolina Outward Bound
Sierra Zischke
Community Academy of Philadelphia Students
Sean Donovan
Zachary Lance
Brian Martino
Ralph Rogers
Patrina Sanchez
Katie Tausendfreundt