Our Team




Jon O'Connor, MS Organizational Leadership

Owner/Share Holder


Jon has a diverse experience in management, leadership, training, and development.  Jon has worked with staff teams, executive leadership, and youth in educational, recreation, therapeutic, and wilderness settings.  While leading NCAC's expansion and growth, he continues to be an active trainer and capacity builder in many areas of the business.

He is an active consultant and has been part of numerous small businesses start ups, including the creation of North Coast Adventure Centers Inc. as a employee owned "co-op" model.  When he is not developing programs and training he loves international travel and exploring rivers of the Pacific Northwest and the world.


Direct: 858-692-3581
Company: 800-808-2836

Derek Kingham
Facilitator, Trainer, and Chief Operating Officer

Owner/Share Holder


Growing up in England Derek attended the United World College of the Atlantic, an international outward bound school.   He has served on cliff rescue teams, as a Lifeboat coxswain and as a trainer/examiner in costal small craft. Derek has run a wide variety of adventure/outward bound programs for youth groups both in the US and the UK.  Derek is also an active business consultant in San Francisco and the Humboldt area.

Derek is the executive and administrative wing of North Coast Adventure Centers.  He helps support the companies vision, direction, and financial health.  His love however, is in the field playing and working programs.  Derek volunteers extensively with Girl Scouts, he leads two troops in McKinleyville,  organizes adventure programs for girls in the Humboldt area, and is NNCTC trainer of Girl Scout leaders.

Direct: 707-840-9160
Company: 800-808-2836

Roger Pryor
Trainer and Curriculum Developer

Owner/Share Holder


Roger is a building designer, general contractor, life coach, first aid trainer, community developer, team builder, and river guide (among other things). 

Roger has been part of North Coast Adventure Centers direction since before its inception.  He continues to be active in the company.  In his spare time he leads trainings of all kinds, rafts local rivers, and spends time with his wife Peggy.


Direct: 707-822-0222
Company: 800-808-2836

Charity Freitas

Facilitator and Guide


Charity has a passion for curriculum development, facilitation, outdoor activities, and personal and professional development. She has led various health education topics based on the Harm Reduction Model for almost 7 years around San Francisco and Humboldt County. She attended College of the Redwoods and most recently completed her time as a Straight Up Americorps member working as a Life Skills Coach and Mentor. She has worked with people from various demographic backgrounds and loves to help people grow and learn more about themselves.
She enjoys guiding canopy and river tours and recently became a Swiftwater Rescue Technician. In her free time she likes to garden, play music, hike, travel, learn, and explore the many things life has to offer. She plans on pursuing a career in outdoor adventure and working toward a degree in Recreation Administration.


Company: 800-808-2836

Alegria Sita
Facilitator, Trainer
Alegria has a broad spectrum of skills and experience in teambuilding, experiential education, personal & professional development, and event organizing.  Alegria has been facilitating, training, and leading adventure programming for over 15 years.  She has also worked with parents, teachers and youth fostering Heartful Communication through private counsel, workshops and trainings.   
Currently, she has launched her small business in event planning and consulting (www.galabeleza.com).  When Alegria is not leading groups or planning events, she can be exploring the world visiting other cultures, communities, and countries.
Direct: 707-845-4998
Company: 800-808-2836

Adam Wanden
Guide and Trainer

Owner/Share Holder


Adam has diverse set of climbing skills. He has been rock climbing in Humboldt for fifteen years, competed in the speed climbs at the Lumberjack World Championships in Hayward, Wisconsin and worked in tree canopies looking for Red Tree Voles in Oregon and California.

He and his is wife, Shoshanna, own Redwood Raks World Dance Studio in Arcata's historic Creamery Building.

Adam can be found climbing at Far North Climbing gym and at local climbing "hot spots."


Direct: 707-832-2607
Company: 800-808-2836


Matt Deshazo

Trainer, Guide, and Climbing Director


Matt is the owner of Far North Climbing Gym in Arcata, CA as well as a ropes course facilitator and semi-pro climber. When he is not doubling for Johnny Depp, Matt is leading classes as his gym, climbing Humboldt's beautiful coastal crags, and eating lots of tofu.

Matt is one of the Directors for our Outdoor Rock Climbing.  He plans events, organizes trips, and trains new guides.


Direct: 707-495-2774
Company: 800-808-2836

Amy Cirincione LCSW, CADC I
Adventure Therapy Consultant



Amy is currently the Director of Social Services for Hospice of Humboldt. Previously Amy was an staff member of Outward Bound as well as a Field Therapist, Coordinating Therapist, and later Clinical Director of Catherine Freer Wilderness Therapy Programs in Albany, OR.


Amy has led trainings on Wilderness Therapy, Secondary and Vicarious Trauma, Anxiety Disorders, Individual and Group Counseling Skills, Drug and Alcohol Treatment, Internet Addictions, and Suicide Assessment & Prevention.


Direct: 707-267-5926

Company: 800-808-2836
Peggy Pryor



Peggy is the drive behind our best pictures.  She strives to document the intense emotions our clients experience during our programs and tours.

Peggy offers her beautiful pictures for individuals, families, and companies.


Direct: 707-822-0222
Company: 800-808-2836
Dan Coyle CADC I

Guide, Trainer, and Pacific NorthWest Director


Dan has worked in the Wilderness Therapy and Therapeutic School Industry for over 10 years.  He has developed and run adventure programs and most recently was the School Director for Santiam Crossing a Boarding School in Scio, Oregon.  Dan is a Certified Drug and Alcohol Counselor, a Swiftwater Rescue Technition, and a ACA Kayak Instructor.  Dan Studied at Cornell University and did Post Baccalaureate Studies at the University of Oregon.

Dan loves the outdoors, especially the California North Coast upward to Oregon.  In his off time he loves to rock climb, run canyoneering expeditions, and surf.


Direct: 541-760-0774
Company: 800-808-2836

Derek Hilson
Guide, Facilitator, & Red Cross Instructor
Humboldt AdventureWear Co-Founder

Derek assists North Coast AdventureCenters in connecting and building relationships with individuals, non-profits, schools, and businesses in our community. 

Derek loves riding his bike, hiking in the redwoods, exploring the dunes on our local beaches, playing Disc Golf at any one of Humboldt County's many courses, and assisting with Ropes Courses & Canopy Tours.

Direct: 510-828-9913
Company: 800-808-2836

Liz Valls
Booking Manager

Liz was born in Spain and moved to the US when she was 7.  She speaks English, Spanish and Catalan.  She has worked mostly as a paralegal / admin assistant for the past 20 years.  When she is not working she enjoys spending time with her kids and husband hiking through the forest & sand dunes, working on crafts and reading.  She is also an active supporter to her crazy hubby with all of his extreme races.



Jeremy Robertson

Guide, Facilitator, and Red Cross Instructor


After serving a term as our Straight Up AmeriCorps member, Jeremy is continuing to work as a canopy tour guide and ropes course facilitator.  Jeremy has spent a few summers working with youth as a ropes course facilitator, rock wall instructor and program head.  He is currently working on his degree in Recreation Administration with a focus in outdoor adventure at Humboldt State.

Direct: 314-610-4570
Company: 800-808-2836 x9

Elijah Andrews
Trainer, Guide and Climbing Director

Owner/Share Holder


Elijah is passionate about training and facilitating adventure through the outdoors and rock climbing.

As an American Mountian Guide Association Certified climbing instructor, Elijah has worked as a rock climbing and outdoor adventure trainer around Northern California for over 8 years for companies like REI, Center Activities of Humboldt State University, and North Coast Adventure Centers.  


Company: 800-808-2836
Nicole Stephens

Facilitator and Trainer


Nicole is the past Managing Director of North Coast Adventure Centers and is currently a contract facilitator and trainer for us.  She continues to be active in the field working as a turtle counter in the Nevada and California Deserts or as a river guide in the Pacific Northwest.

Nicole is available to facilitate programs when we are lucky enough to have her in town.



Karen Gomez, M.S. Educational Technology
Director of Educational Technology

Owner/Share Holder


Karen is in charge of NCAC's leap into the future of Educational Technology.  Connecting our clients goals with technology keeps up moving toward the future.  Karen has a California  Teaching Credential and a Masters Degree in Educational Technology.  She has 18 years full time teaching experience (grades K – 8).  She is currently teaching Kindergarten with the San Diego Unified School District.

A lead teacher for technology planning and implementation at Hawthorne Elementary School.  She enjoys sewing, crafts, cooking and long walks.



Justin Graves

Mountain Bike Consultant 


Justin has grown up cycling on the North Coast.  For the past ten years he has pursued competitive cycling in all disciplines from coast to coast, has served as a youth athletics coach, action sports camp counselor, cycling event promoter, documentary film producer, professional downhill cyclist, and full time bicycle mechanic. 

You can visit him at Revolution Bicycle Repair, in Arcata, Monday through Wednesday and book a tour Thursday through Sunday.  Justin brings his biking passion to the North Coast and looks forward to sharing his experience and local knowledge with you.


Direct: 609-304-3349
Company: 800-808-2836
John Murphy
Director of Del Norte Development

Owner/Share Holder


John is our Crescent City representive developing our future region in Del Norte County, CA.

John is the lead ropes couse trainer and teacher for the Del Norte School district.  When John is not climbing in trees he is surfing or playing with his 2 kids.


Company: 800-808-2836
Robert O'Connor
Chairman of the Board

Owner/Share Holder


Bob is active in the executive management of North Coast Adventure Centers and gives a crucial outside approach to business development, growth, and sustainability.

Bob is a Wealth Management Consultant for Morgan Stanley in Rancho Santa Fe, CA.  In his former life he was a marathoner, kayaker, and body surfer.


Company: 800-808-2836




Elijah Andrews is the Climbing Coordinator for North Coast Adventure Centers Inc.