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SAM Magazine—Woodbury, Conn., April 8, 2013—Ryan Bell of CNL Financial Group, Ross Boisvert of McIntyre Ski Area, Rob McSkimming of Whistler Blackcomb, and Justin Rowland of Ski Apache have earned the 2013 SAMMY Leadership Awards, given annually to individuals who will shape the future of the winter resort industry. This is the 14th year for the Awards.

"Every year we at SAM Magazine are amazed at the number of talented leaders we have in this industry," said SAM publisher Jennifer Rowan. "This year's group of SAMMY winners epitomize the creativity, inventiveness and dedication that are needed to run successful mountain resorts year round. SAM is proud to recognize their leadership."

As manager, asset management for CNL Financial Group, Ryan Bell has helped facilitate the growth of CNL’s expansive collection of winter resort holdings from seven to 17, and deployed more than $220 million in capital expansion projects. He also oversees CNL’s portfolio of seven resort commercial villages, encompassing 400,000 square feet of retail space. And he’s just getting started: “Ryan has lots of runway before him in our industry,” one associate said.

Ross Boisvert, VP and GM of McIntyre Ski Area, N.H., embodies creativity, inventiveness and dedication. He began teaching at McIntyre in 1984, became ski school director in 1989, and vastly expanded the local school programs that have become the area’s lifeblood. In 2009, he assumed management control from the city of Manchester parks and recreation department. He has since built a new lodge and three conveyor lifts and improved the snowmaking system. “Ross Boisvert is not only a great man, but as dedicated as a manager can be,” says one admirer.

Whistler Blackcomb VP business development Rob McSkimming has been involved in marketing, sales and snowschool during Whistler’s growth and maturity as a premier destination resort. He also directed development of summer programs, including Whistler’s internationally acclaimed mountain and downhill bike park, and creation of Crankworx, the world’s largest freeride mountain biking festival. A colleague said, “Rob’s passion is limitless and I am positive he will continue to shape industry growth in the future.”

Justin Rowland, director of operations at Ski Apache, N.M., has grown up in the ski business; his father was mountain manager at Sun Valley, Idaho. He has worked in many facets of the industry. Still, he faced a new challenge last summer: the Little Bear Fire. Justin and his team successfully protected much of the resort’s infrastructure from the wildfire, but three lifts were damaged. The resort elected to replace rather than repair them, and Justin oversaw the purchase and installation of two chairlifts and a gondola in just four months. Said one observer, “His dedication and work ethic has made an impression on all of those who have been in contact with him.”

SAM congratulates all four SAMMY recipients and wishes them continued success as future industry leaders.

Full SAMMY bios are available at