Grace leading a hike at Oliver's Woods

White River Docent Program Seeks Volunteers

Have you ever attended one of CILTI’s guided hikes and thought that you might enjoy leading a hike yourself? Have you been inspired by a guided hike or program that you’ve participated in? Consider becoming a White River Docent!

We are now seeking outgoing and enthusiastic volunteers for this pilot program at Oliver’s Woods.

Docents volunteer their time because they believe in CILTI’s mission and have a passion for nature. They might have a desire to share their knowledge in an area of expertise—be it plant or wildlife photography, birding, native wildflowers, Indy trivia, fishing or White River lore. Or they might simply be a big fan of CILTI.

These volunteers will lead outdoor programs throughout the year, including interpretive walks for both public and private groups. They will also take part in restoration and stewardship activities at Oliver’s Woods. They help visitors build connections to nature and Indianapolis, appreciating Oliver Daugherty’s vision of keeping the preserve an undeveloped space.

The purpose of the docent program is to provide visitors with an exceptional opportunity for engagement. Two days each month, a docent will be on site. The docent will greet visitors, lead guided walks through the property, share stories and fun facts, and answer questions. Docents will also help with light trail maintenance.

While docents will be able to choose the dates on which they are present, we are asking for a one-year commitment to the program. A docent training and orientation will be held in late January.

If you are interested in becoming a White River Docent, or you have any questions about the program, please contact our White River Steward at before January 16, 2022.

Many thanks to the Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust for making this new program possible!

Grace van Kan

White River Steward

Grace grew up roaming the woods, creeks and wetlands around the Chesapeake Bay watershed. From an early trout-raising project to a “gap year” spent restoring coral reefs in Thailand, her interest in aquatic conservation has only grown. Now she cares for several riverine nature preserves as CILTI’s White River Steward.