Aaron Ball

Aaron Ball
Operations Coordinator & Senior Lecturer of Adventure Education

Education

  • Ph.D., Education: Adult, Organizational Learning, and Leadership, University of Idaho, (in progress)
  • M.A., Adventure Education, Prescott College
  • B.S., Environmental Science, California State University

Expertise 

  • Snow and avalanche education: Instructor Trainer, Pro Instructor, and Rec Instructor at American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE)
  • Risk management: Master’s degree focus, involvement with multiple risk management committees, and several conference presentations and publications
  • Judgment and decision-making: Masters and doctoral degree focus and numerous publications, presentations, and workshops.
  • Wilderness medicine: Senior instructor for Wilderness Medicine Training Center
  • Mountain guiding: Guide and instructor with San Juan Mountain Guides, trained with American Mountain Guides Association
  • River running and rescue: Instructor trainer for Rescue 3 International, river guide and instructor for eight years

Contact:

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Media Contact

Our faculty are available to comment on topics related to areas of interest or expertise. If you need further assistance, call Media Relations at 970-247-6073 or email Media Relations.


About Aaron Ball

Aaron has worked in the adventure education and outdoor leadership field for over 20 years as a guide, instructor, trainer, and supervisor. Currently, he is a Senior Lecturer in and the Operations Coordinator for the Adventure Education Department. He joined the department in 2008 as an adjunct faculty and entered his current role in 2013. He has taught almost every course offered in the department and continues to develop new academic opportunities, including a Snow and Avalanche Studies certificate, the first of its kind at Fort Lewis College.

Aaron’s interests span the adventure education discipline, but he is particularly focused on the development of judgment, particularly when high risk and uncertainty exist. He is actively engaged in and contributes to the dialogue surrounding adventure education related topics, and regularly presents and instructs at local, regional, and national courses and conferences.

Selected Presentations and Publications 

“Mitigating the negative effects of heuristics and cognitive bias using decision-making tools & decision aids”. Co-presented workshop the annual Association for Outdoor Recreation and Education and Association for Experiential Education joint national conference (Spokane, WA, 2019)

“An effective model for training program staff”. Co-presented workshop at the Wilderness Risk Management Conference (Portland, OR, 2018)

“Effective outdoor program design and management”. Co-presented pre-conference workshop presented at the Wilderness Risk Management Conference (Portland, OR, 2018; Portland, OR, 2015; Colorado Springs, CO, 2010) and the annual Association for Outdoor Recreation and Education national conference (Keystone, CO, 2010)

“How risk analysis and incident evaluation inform outdoor leadership style and decision-making”. Co-presented workshop presented at the annual Colorado Outdoor Educators Symposium and Association for Experiential Education Rocky Mountain Regional Conference (Durango, CO, 2017)

“Concepts and strategies for developing risk management related decision-making”. Workshop presented at the Wilderness Risk Management Conference (Stone Mountain, GA, 2014)

“Decision-making as risk managers”. Workshop presented at the annual Association for Experiential Education Rocky Mountain Regional Conference (Durango, CO, 2012)

“Some white men just don’t get it. Or do they? Exploring privilege and ally building in outdoor recreation and education”. Co-presented workshop presented at annual Association for Outdoor Recreation and Education national conference (Keystone, CO, 2010)

Professional Connections 

  • American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE)
  • Association of Outdoor Recreation and Education (AORE) (Ambassador)
  • American Avalanche Association (AAA)
  • Association for Experiential Education (AEE)
  • Southwest Rescue
  • Wilderness Medicine Training Center (WMTC)
  • Rescue 3 International
  • American Mountain Guides Association (AMGA)
  • Outward Bound
  • Wilderness Risk Management Conference (WRMC)
  • Wilderness Medical Society (WMS)
  • Open Sky Wilderness
  • San Juan Mountain Guides (SJMG)
  • Friends of the San Juans