Katherine (Kat) was born in the California wine-growing region of Napa Valley, where she found an early appreciation for nature and the outdoors in a deeply-rooted agricultural community. From 2013 to 2019, she lived, worked and traveled throughout the Hawaiian Islands, falling in love with the lush tropical rain forests, pristine beaches and vibrant ocean life.
Some of her best writing memories include interviewing a traditional Irezumi Japanese tattoo artist (while he was in the middle of a tattoo), getting an impromptu meditation lesson from a Buddhist minister at Myohoji Temple in Honolulu, exploring sustainable tourism in Palau and completing an in-depth guide to Na Pali Coast State Park on Kauai. Throughout her travels, she's discovered natural mud baths in Costa Rica's rainforests, gotten lost touring castles in the Portuguese city of Sintra, ridden on night trains through India, watched turtles hatch in Mexico and poured cider in Spain.
See more of Katherine's photography on her Instagram page, @katgalla
Katherine has been active in the environmental/animal welfare non-profit community since high school, where she worked as a volunteer at Sunrise Stables Horse Rescue and Paws for Healing. After graduating with a B.A. in English from Chapman University, she spent a month living in a small village in Surin, Thailand, working with the Save Elephant Foundation. She completed internships at City Lights Publishing in 2013 and the Borgen Project, a non-profit publication fighting global poverty through advocacy, fundraising and education, in 2017. Currently, Katherine volunteers at Jameson Animal Rescue Ranch in California.
While her love of travel and non-profit work have given her insight into the issues plaguing the world today, Katherine's time in Hawaii opened her eyes even further to the plight of the earth due to climate change and global pollution. During her time in Honolulu, she began shifting her focus toward sustainability and nature writing.
Katherine has been a regular contributor for Tripsavvy since 2018, covering travel topics primarily about California and Hawaii. Most recently, Katherine has worked as a regular contributor for Inhabitat, exploring topics like current environmental events and sustainable lifestyle, and Treehugger, a modern sustainability and nature site with more than 120 million readers each year. Katherine is also certified in sustainable tourism by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) and has 10 years of hospitality experience in the food industry.
Katherine received a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from Chapman University, where she was also a member of the Sigma Tau Delta English Honor Society. She also holds a certificate in Sustainable Tourism from the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC).