2013 SAMMY Winners
ryan bell :: manager, asset management
CNL FINANCIAL GROUP
Ryan may have found his way into the ski industry through Orlando-based CNL, but his passion for winter sports was embedded early on, growing up in North Dakota and making early turns at Midwest ski areas like Terry Peak and Buena Vista.
After earning a degree in Finance from the University of Central Florida, Ryan joined CNL as a financial analyst, working with a pair of industry veterans in Steve Rice and Tom Lithgow to build a scalable platform for overseeing the financial performance and capital investments of a budding winter portfolio. In six years with the company, Ryan has helped facilitate the growth of CNL’s winter resort holdings from seven resorts to 17, coupled with deployment of more than $220 million in capital expansion projects along the way.
In 2009, and further to the shared responsibilities within ski area asset management, Ryan assumed oversight for a portfolio of seven resort commercial villages encompassing 400,000 square feet of retail space across 200 tenants.
Ryan credits his team at CNL and a long list of talented resort operating partners for helping immerse him in the business and providing opportunities to succeed.
One of Ryan’s nominators says: “With excellent management skills and a great sense of humor, Ryan has lots of runway before him in our industry!”
ROSS BOISVERT :: VICE PRESIDENT AND GENERAL MANAGER
McIntyre Ski Area, N.H.
Ross began teaching skiing at McIntyre in 1984. The ski area was operated by the Manchester Parks and Recreation, while the ski school, rental and retail shop were a concession to a local ski shop. In 1989-90, the position of ski school director opened up, and Ross took on the challenge. He developed an after-school snowsports program and began marketing it to elementary schools in Manchester and surrounding towns. As more schools joined McIntyre, the after-school programs grew. In 1996, Ross oversaw the construction of a new rental/retail shop building, which contributed to the great growth at McIntyre.
McIntyre Ski School continued to grow under Ross’ direction to more than 5,000 students per week. In September 2009, McIntyre Ski School Inc. took over total operations from Manchester Parks and Recreation. The 25-year management agreement yielded many improvements to the area, including a new lodge, three new conveyor lifts and improved snowmaking. During this changeover, Ross moved from snow sports director to VP and GM.
Ross is a certified PSIA instructor, certified NSP patroller, is part of the PSIA snow sports management committee, and has served on the board of directors of PSIA for 12 years. He currently serves on the Ski NH board of directors.
Ross says McIntyre’s growth could not have occurred without his incredibly talented staff. His staff says of him, “Ross Boisvert is not only a great man, but as dedicated as a manager can be. He works harder than anyone and he knows all his employees and genuinely cares. And, customers are like his second family.”
ROB MCSKIMMING :: VP, BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT
WHISTLER BLACKCOMB, B.C.
Rob has been living and working in Whistler since 1980, the year that the resort’s award-winning village began to emerge Phoenix-like from the ashes of a garbage dump. In the three decades since, Whistler has become one of the leading four-season mountain resorts in the world. Rob has had the fortunate circumstance to have been part of this journey. Along the way, he has played a critical role in many innovative and ground breaking programs, events and projects.
Rob has been involved in marketing, sales, and snowschool during times of unprecedented growth. Rob has also been instrumental in driving the growth of Whistler Blackcomb’s summer business. He has directed the inception, development, and continued success of the world’s leading mountain and downhill bike park, as well as the creation and expansion of Crankworx, the world’s largest freeride mountain biking festival.
In Rob’s current role as Whistler Blackcomb’s VP of business development he is both working on the next big thing and continuing to find opportunities to grow existing business platforms.
Rob is described by one of his nominators as “the pioneer of lift-accessed mountain biking. A true visionary and leader, Rob’s passion and leadership helped forge a new revenue stream for resorts around the world. Rob’s passion is limitless and I am positive he will continue to shape industry growth in the future.”
JUSTIN ROWLAND :: DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS
SKI APACHE, NEW MEXICO
Justin Rowland learned to ski at Sun Valley, Idaho, at the age of two, where his father was the mountain manager. Since, Justin has worked in every facet of the industry, from retail to lift operations, and from snowmaking to food & beverage.
Justin has held positions at Sun Valley and Snowbasin and, for the past six years, has been employed at Ski Apache Ski Resort, where he is the director of operations. At Ski Apache, Justin has installed snowmaking to the top of the mountain and cultivated guest service. Justin’s mettle was truly put to the test when the Little Bear Fire struck the resort in 2012, destroying a large part of the area’s lift infrastructure. This past summer, the resort scrambled to replace the damaged lifts and, under Justin’s direction, installed two fixed-grip lifts and an eight-passenger gondola in four months.
Justin is married to Jennifer Dunn and has a son, Tucker Rowland. In his spare time, Justin loves to ski, hike, bike and fly.
Justin’s nominators say, “Justin’s team worked selflessly to protect the lifts, buildings and snowmaking equipment when the Little Bear Fire swept through the resort in early June .” Once the fire was over, “he went the extra mile to see the project through. His dedication and work ethic has made an impression on all of those who have been in contact with him. Bringing Ski Apache back from the fire was a major accomplishment.”