SAM Magazine—Whistler, B.C., June 16, 2017—Vail Resorts has appointed Pete Sonntag, the current senior vice president of the company's Lake Tahoe region, to become chief operating officer of Whistler Blackcomb. Sonntag will start this summer, once his Canadian work visa is approved.
The appointment follows the departure of longtime Whistler Blackcomb COO Dave Brownlie.
“Pete brings more than three decades of experience in the ski industry and has held a variety of senior leadership roles with Vail Resorts at Heavenly, Vail, Beaver Creek, and Keystone in addition to his current role overseeing our three Tahoe resorts, Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood,” said Pat Campbell, Vail Resorts mountain division president. “He has had the opportunity to focus on both winter and summer operations at several of our resorts, a perspective that will continue to be invaluable to the team and guest experience at Whistler Blackcomb.”
Sonntag has been the senior vice president of the company's Lake Tahoe region since 2015, serving as COO of Heavenly Mountain Resort with oversight of Northstar and Kirkwood. He was appointed to lead Heavenly in 2010. Prior to that, he directed the Ski & Snowboard Schools at Vail and Beaver Creek. He holds a bachelor's degree in economics from the University of Albany (New York) and a master's degree in business administration from the University of Vermont.
Brownlie will continue with Whistler Blackcomb through mid-summer to ensure a smooth transition for the resort and surrounding community. The search for Sonntag's successor in Lake Tahoe will begin immediately.