In SAM’s monthly Snow People, we highlight recent personnel moves that have been made in the mountain resort industry. This report was written by Katie Brinton.
JOE HESSION, N.J. Snow Operating CEO Joe Hession was named the keynote speaker for the 2019 Interski Congress at Pamporovo, Bulgaria, this March. Hession was nominated by the PSIA-AASI executive staff to represent the U.S. delegation, and was selected for the keynote address from among the international group of nominees by the Interski Presidium. It is the first time in many years that an American has been selected to address the congress. Hession will speak to the congress about growing the sport and the challenges facing the industry in North America and abroad.
SAM WILLIAMS, COLO. Purgatory Resort, Colo., has named Sam Williams senior director of mountain operations. Before joining Purgatory, Williams was the general manager of Powderhorn Mountain Resort, Colo. Williams also previously worked for Copper Mountain in a number of roles, and owned and operated his own construction management and contracting firm for 15 years.
MATT GEBO, CALIF. Matt Gebo is the new director of marketing for Mammoth Lakes Tourism. Gebo is a mountain tourism veteran who has worked in communications for the American Ski Company and Colorado Ski Country. Before joining Mammoth Lakes, Gebo was the director of marketing for Mount Snow in 2011, moved to Park City Mountain Resort in 2013 as head of marketing and communications, and in 2015 established his own marketing consulting brand.
JORDAN ELLIOT AND JOHN GIFFORD, ORE. John Gifford, former president of PNSAA, officially retired Dec. 31, 2018. Gifford had been president of the organization since 2012. Gifford cedes his role to Jordan Elliot, who has served as Mt. Bachelor’s HR director since2012 and, prior to that, was lift operations manager at the resort. Before heading to Oregon, Elliot worked in lift operations at Park City, Utah. He has been involved with the PNSAA steering committee since 2011. Elliot and Gifford have been working together through the transition since mid October.
BO BIGELOW, MAINE Bo Bigelow stepped down from his role with Ski Maine as the show coordinator for the annual New England Summit and NSAA Fall Education series. Bigelow left Ski Maine to focus on his position with U.S. Collegiate Ski and Snowboard Association (USCSA), where he is the VP of conference coordinators for USCSA collegiate ski racing. Bigelow will remain in New England for the winter of 2018-19 to oversee Eastern operations for USCSA racing operations.
ANDY PORTER, WASH. Mount Spokane, Wash., volunteer ski patroller Andy Porter has been named the Outstanding Alpine Patroller by the National Ski Patrol. Porter, a lifelong skier and former collegiate racer, has been a ski patroller for nearly 20 years. Randy Foiles, the Mt. Spokane ski patrol director, nominated Porter for the award.
VERMONT ADAPTIVE SKI AND SPORTS Norm Staunton has been named the director of technical operations and advancement for Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sports. In this role, he will oversee training programs, equipment management and maintenance, collaborative efforts with program coordinators, and efforts to build a permanent facility in Burlington, Vt. Staunton has been a coach and volunteer instructor with Vermont Adaptive since 2008, and a director for the organization’s 2014 Home Sweet Home campaign. He is also a member of the PSIA-AASI eastern division adaptive development team.
Vermont Adaptive has also named Felicia Fowler as its program coordinator. Fowler will work with winter sports programs out of Mt. Ellen, Sugarbush, and summer sports programs in the Waterbury and Montpelier areas. Fowler previously served as the coach for the men’s and women’s rowing teams at the University of New Hampshire (UNH). She holds a master’s in therapeutic recreation administration from UNH and is a certified therapeutic recreation specialist.
TYSON GOODRICH, CHINA Pipe shaper and terrain park builder Tyson Goodrich died in a car accident while working in China in early January. Goodrich was one half of Khunos Snow Pros, an independent park consulting and building group. Goodrich had a successful career building pipes, boardercross, and slopestyle courses on the world event stage for the Olympics, Dew Tour, X Games, and many FIS events around the world. He got his start at Mt. Shasta Ski Park in 1999 as a groomer, and later a park designer and builder. Goodrich went on to work for The Remarkables, N.Z., Park City, Utah, and Whistler, B.C.,
BOB BEATTIE, COLO. Hundreds of people attended celebrations at Aspen Highlands and Hotel Jerome in honor of the late Bob Beattie. Beattie was a long time resident of Woody Creek and known for his roles in developing World Cup Racing, ushering in the dual format on the pro racing tour, establishing NASTAR, and coaching the 1964 Olympic U.S. Ski team. Beattie was also an advocate for making skiing accessible to all kids, regardless of socioeconomic status, a goal he worked toward with the Aspen Valley Ski and Snowboard Club and Aspen Skiing Co.