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Athletes to Shine Bright in New York City

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
August, 15 2018
Jonny Moseley introduces athletes at last year's New York Gold Medal Gala.
Jonny Moseley introduces athletes at last year's New York Gold Medal Gala. (U.S. Ski & Snowboard)

U.S. Ski & Snowboard will host its annual New York Gold Medal Gala at the Ziegfield Ballroom in New York City, New York, on October 25, 2018. Olympic ski and snowboard stars including Lindsey Vonn, Red Gerard and Jessie Diggins, among many more, will descend on New York City for the event, now in its 52nd year. The New York Gold Medal Gala plays a critical role in raising funds which directly help ski and snowboard athletes achieve their goals of being the Best in the World.

A small number of tickets are still available for what will be the social highlight of the snowsports world, but demand is high so anyone considering attending should click here to purchase. However, even those who cannot make it to the New York Gold Medal Gala can still take part in the event by bidding on some incredible auction items here

Among the highlights of this year’s Gala live auction is an ultimate VIP experience for four people to attend the 2019 FIS Snowboard Freestyle Freeski World Championships in Park City, Utah. This package includes a sneak-peak behind-the-scenes tour of a competition course, a VIP dining experience at High West Saloon in historic Park City, the use of four Gold Passes for skiing or riding at Deer Valley Resort and/or Park City Mountain and dinner with Kyle Mack, 2018 Winter Olympic Silver Medalist in Big Air Snowboarding, among many others.

“The passionate support from our New York community and everyone who flies in from around the world always makes the New York Gold Medal Gala a festive celebration of our athletes’ journeys to become the Best in the World, “ said U.S. Ski & Snowboard President and CEO Tiger Shaw. “Each year I am astounded and humbled by the generosity of this community. Without support like this, historic Olympic moments such as those we witnessed during the 2018 Winter Games wouldn’t be possible. This year’s Gala will be a culmination of all of that hard work and a chance to look forward to the next four years.”

The New York Gold Medal Gala will raise nearly $2 million for U.S. skiers and snowboarders through the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Foundation – a critical element of funding for the United States’ Olympic national governing body of ski and snowboard sports. The Gala’s storied history began in 1967 as the Ski Ball, which sought to benefit alpine athletes on the U.S. Ski Team. Today the tradition continues as a celebration of all of U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s ski and snowboard athletes, including some of the biggest names in sport. It has become a staple of the New York City social philanthropic scene and provides a grand send-off for athletes before the start of the winter competition season.

This year’s event will be hosted by Gala favorite and Olympic legend Jonny Moseley, gold medalist at the 1998 Olympic Winter Games for moguls skiing. This year’s event chairs are U.S. Ski & Snowboard Foundation trustees David Saunders, John Townsend III and Dani Virtue. The event will be sold out, such is the demand for tickets, and participants will have a chance to celebrate some already iconic moments from the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, such as Red Gerard’s gold medal in slopestyle snowboarding and Kikkan Randall and Jessie Diggin’s historic gold medal in cross country skiing. The night’s program includes a silent and live auction as well as a spectacular technology and dance fusion performance by iLuminateLabeled as the “best new act in America” during their run on America’s Got Talent in 2011, attendees of this year’s Gala will see dancers in electrified glow-in-the-dark suits performing a dynamic routine guaranteed to dazzle the crowd.

The evening kicks off at 6 p.m. with a star-studded White Carpet immediately preceding the official start of the Gala, from 5 to 5:45 p.m. This is a great opportunity to connect with some of the greatest athletes in the world. Athletes confirmed for attendance so far include:

Lindsey Vonn, 2018 and 2010 Olympic Bronze Medalist; 2010 Gold Medalist, alpine
Shaun White 2006, 2010, 2018 Olympic Gold Medalist, halfpipe snowboarding
Jessie Diggins, 2018 Olympic Gold Medalist, cross country
Red Gerard2018 Olympic Gold Medalist, slopestyle snowboarding
David Wise, 2014 and 2018 Olympic Gold Medalist, halfpipe skiing
Alex Ferreira2018 Olympic Silver Medalist, halfpipe skiing

Kyle Mack, 2018 Olympic Silver Medalist, big air snowboarding
Brita Sigourney, 2018 Olympic Bronze Medalist, halfpipe skiing
Casey Andringa, 2018 Olympian, moguls

Mac Bohonnon, 2014 and 2018 Olympian, aerials
Ashley Caldwell, 2012, 2014 and 2018 Olympian, aerials
Annalisa Drew, 2014 and 2018 Olympian, halfpipe skiing
Breezy Johnson, 2018 Olympian, alpine skiing
Tess Johnson2018 Olympian, moguls
Jaelin Kauf, 2018 Olympian, moguls

Hagen Kearney2018 Olympian, snowboard cross
Alice McKennis, 2018 Olympian, alpine skiing

Kylie McKinnon, 2018 Olympian, aerials
Alice Merryweather, 2018 Olympian, alpine skiing 
Brad Wilson, 2014 and 2018 Olympian, moguls
Hannah Kearney, 2010 Olympic Gold Medalist; 2014 Olympic Bronze Medalist, moguls
JJ Thomas, 2002 Olympic Bronze Medalist, halfpipe snowboarding

Based on competition and training schedules, athlete appearances subject to change without notice. 

For ticket purchase and live auction information, please click here.

To stay up to date on the New York Gold Medal Gala happenings, search #NYGoldMedalGala on social media.

Waterville Valley to Host 2019, 2021 U.S. Alpine Championships

By Megan Harrod
August, 14 2018
Waterville Valley to Host the Toyota U.S. Alpine Championships

The nation’s best alpine ski racers will descend upon New Hampshire’s Waterville Valley Resort in 2019 and 2021 for the Toyota U.S. Alpine Tech Championships - the biggest race the resort has hosted since the White Circus visited in 1991 when Julie Parisien won the World Cup giant slalom.

Waterville Valley Resort will play host to the slalom, giant slalom, and parallel slalom events March 23-26, 2019. The parallel slalom event will be a new addition to the U.S. Alpine Championships calendar.

“The introduction of the parallel event into the U.S. Alpine Championships tech week is an effort the alpine department has been advocating for and is excited about,” noted U.S. Ski & Snowboard Alpine Director, Jesse Hunt. “It’s a format that spectators understand and enjoy. With the introduction of more parallel events in the World Cup, as well as the team event in the Olympic Games’ calendar, it’s important we begin to place more focus on the event. The inclusion of parallel into U.S. Alpine Championships is proof of our commitment to developing our young talent to reach the podium for this discipline at all levels in the future.”

At this point, the plan is to run the current International Ski Federation (FIS) format for the parallel event:

  • Qualification: one-run, single-pole “traditional-style” SL (120-200m VD), for each gender

  • Heats: two-run, dual paneled SL for 32 athletes (80-100m VD; 5 heats), per gender

FIS is currently considering modifications to their format, which will be determined at the fall FIS meetings. Based on these conversations, format and qualification details will be modified accordingly for U.S. Alpine Championships.

“We are looking forward to bringing elite ski racing back to Waterville Valley Resort,” said U.S. Ski & Snowboard Chief of Systems and Operations Calum Clark. “The membership and fan base in the east is vast and extremely engaged with the sport, and our athletes love competing in front of them. Julie Parisien had a commanding and inspiring World Cup victory there in 1991, and U.S. Ski & Snowboard is excited to bring some of the best ski racers in the world, like two-time Olympic gold medalists Mikaela Shiffrin and Ted Ligety and Olympic champion Lindsey Vonn, back to the resort in hopes that they too will inspire the next generation.”

Waterville Valley Resort shares the enthusiasm for hosting the event. “This will be the biggest race that Waterville Valley Resort has hosted since our last World Cup in 1991. The whole team is excited to be bringing elite racing back to Waterville Valley,” says Waterville Valley Resort’s President and General Manager, Tim Smith. “I know our guests and pass holders won’t want to miss the opportunity to see these athletes in action.”

Julie Parisien Skis Giant Slalom at Waterville Valley in 1991
Julie Parisien competes in the World Cup giant slalom at Waterville Valley in 1991. 


The downhill, super-G and alpine combined events will take place prior to the Waterville Valley events, and the venue will be announced shortly. Much like the 2015-2018 Sugarloaf, Maine/Sun Valley, Idaho venue arrangement, U.S. Ski & Snowboard looks to continue the successful long-term calendar plan to move the annual celebration of American ski racing to top resorts around the United States. That said, U.S. Ski & Snowboard will be looking to the west for 2020 and 2022 and the announcement will be forthcoming.

About Waterville Valley
Waterville Valley is a four-season resort set on 540 private acres surrounded by 360° of National Forest. Sitting atop the 4,004-foot Mt. Tecumseh, “New Hampshire’s Family Resort” features 265 acres of skiable terrain, a vertical drop of 2,020 feet, 60 trails, 11 lifts, and 74k of groomed Nordic terrain nestled in the valley below.  Shuttles provide easy access to year-round events, shopping, and dining in the Town Square as well as a variety of lodging options, including country inns, condominiums, and all-suite hotels. This year Waterville Valley Resort continues on Phase II of a multi-year capital improvement and expansion project. For more information, visit waterville.com.

Event Schedule
March 16     Downhill Training - Sugarloaf, Maine
March 17     Downhill Training - Sugarloaf, Maine
March 18     Downhill (NorAm Cup Finals) - Sugarloaf, Maine
March 19     Downhill (National Championships) - Sugarloaf - Maine
March 20     Alpine Combined (National Championships) - Sugarloaf, Maine
March 21     Super-G (National Championships) - Sugarloaf, Maine
March 23     Slalom (National Championships) - Waterville Valley Resort, N.H.
March 24    Parallel Slalom (National Championships) - Waterville Valley Resort, N.H.
March 25    Women’s Giant Slalom (National Championships) - Waterville Valley Resort, N.H.
March 26    Men’s Giant Slalom (National Championships) - Waterville Valley Resort, N.H.

Bergoust, Kavunov Return to Coach U.S. Freestyle Team

By Lara Carlton
August, 13 2018
Ashley Caldwell, the reigning female aerial World Champion, was coached by Kavunov in the EADP
Ashley Caldwell, the reigning female aerial World Champion, was coached by Kavunov in the EADP

The U.S. Freestyle Ski Team welcomes two familiar faces to their aerials’ coaching roster. Dmitriy Kavunov has joined as Head Coach of the Elite Aerials Development Program (EADP) in Lake Placid and Eric Bergoust has joined as World Cup Aerials Coach in Park City. Both Kavunov and Bergoust have storied aerials careers and are excited to be back with the organization.

Kavunov comes from a gymnastics background and was an aerialist in Uzbekistan from 1982 to 1984. “There was no official team at that time, it was more like a club,” Kavunov said. “Me and a couple of guys would go out and practice ourselves.”

In 1985, after the first sanctioned FIS World Cup Aerials event, the discipline became an official sport in the Union of Soviet Social Republics (USSR) and Kavunov became the team’s coach. It was during this early time of aerials in the USSR that Kavunov started coaching Lina Cheryasova (Tashkent, Uzbekistan), who won gold at the 1994 Olympic Winter Games in Lillehammer, Norway. “Lina was the athlete that put Dmitriy on the map,” noted Todd Ossian, head aerials coach for U.S. Ski & Snowboard.

In 1992 Kavunov went back to Uzbekistan to coach aerials until 1999 when he moved to New York to coach gymnastics. During his time in New York, he worked with the Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA). From there Kavunov coached the Canadian aerials team for six years, the last two of which he worked specifically with their development program. In 2008 Kavunov helped start the EADP for U.S. Ski & Snowboard and was with the program until 2010. For the next eight years Kavunov contracted with the Russian Federation, working through two Olympic cycles.

It’s come full circle now for Kavunov with U.S. Ski & Snowboard as he returns to running the EADP. “I’m excited to be back with the EADP, which I helped start. Without the EADP there wouldn't be a opportunity for aerial athletes to train for Olympic-level competition since there are [few] club-level aerials teams in the U.S,” Kavunov  said.

“We’re so excited to have Dmitriy back. He helped build our current team,” said U.S. Ski & Snowboard C-Team Aerial Coach Emily Cook. “He’s coached our two current World Champions and Grand Prix Champion. We’re looking forward to him being a part of that process for new athletes.”

Following Kavunov’s departure from the EADP in 2010, Eric Bergoust took up the mantle of head coach until 2013. Bergoust was an aerialist on the U.S. Freestyle Team from 1989 - 2006.  He competed in four Olympics (1994, 1998, 2002 and 2006) and won gold at the 1998 Olympic Winter Games Nagano, Japan. Bergoust has consulted with U.S. Ski & Snowboard for the past five years and is now back as the World Cup Aerials Coach.

“It will be fun to work with the national team athletes that I coached during my time at the EADP,” Bergoust said about being at U.S. Ski & Snowboard full time.

“Having Bergy back with [us] is so awesome,” Cook remarked. “He was an amazing teammate and I am really looking forward to coaching with him full time now. He has a massive technical knowledge of the sport and the athletes are so fortunate to be learning from one the best.”

Bickner 11th in Courchevel Grand Prix

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
August, 12 2018
Kevin Bickner
Kevin Bickner finished 11th in summer Gran Prix competition in Courchevel, France, Saturday. (Tom Kelly)

Kevin Bickner (Wauconda, Ill.) finished 11th in the HS135 at a Summer Grand Prix event in Courchevel, France, Saturday.

Bickner sailed 125.0 meters in his first jump, and his second was 122.0. Russia's Evgeniy Klimov won the event with jumps of 132 and 129 meters.

"We should be satisfied with that result against this strong field of competitors, but there is still some space for improvement," said Bine Norcic, men's ski jumping head coach for USA Nordic. "We are confident to go to the next events and I am sure that this 11th place was not the best one of the season." 

RESULTS
Men's Large Hill Individual

“Winning at Every Level” Revisited with the Return of Jesse Hunt

By Ski Racing
August, 7 2018
Bode Miller and Steven Nyman Share the Podium at Beaver Creek in 2006
Bode Miller and Steven Nyman share the podium at Birds of Prey in 2006. During Hunt's tenure, the Team experienced great success on all levels, from NorAm to World Cup - on both the men's and women's teams.

Alpine Director Jesse Hunt rejoined the U.S. Alpine Ski Team at the helm, as Alpine Director this spring - a role he formerly occupied from 2002-09. He recently sat down with Sean Higgins from Ski Racing Media to discuss his past success and his future plans for the Team, including Project 26. 

During Hunt's previous tenure as Alpine Director, the U.S. Alpine Ski Team had an incredible depth and talent, featuring now-alumni Bode Miller, Daron Rahlves, and Julia Mancuso, as well as current Team members Lindsey Vonn (Vail, Colo.) and Ted Ligety (Park City, Utah). “Winning at every level” became the mantra associated with Hunt as NorAm titles, World Junior Championships, Olympic and World Championship medals, and World Cup globes were all secured while he was at the helm of the program.

"One of our efforts is to support development the way it needs to be supported because it hasn’t been supported to the level it needs to be supported. I think that’s something that I’ve identified and the organization has identified and I think the country as a whole has identified,” Hunt explains. “The question now is how do we move forward with a sustainable approach to development and support it financially the way it needs to be supported and still take care of athletes that are further up in the system.” 

Hunt believes that, though it is a tough time right now, there is also a great opportunity. “That’s really what compelled me to get back involved. I feel like I can make a difference and I feel like I have enough experience to understand where the resources need to go and how they need to be deployed and how we can affect some change and move the program.”

Read the full story on SkiRacing.com

Hendrickson Considers Postponing Retirement

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
August, 4 2018
Sarah Hendrickson
Olympian Sarah Hendrickson may postponing retirement after the FIS added large hill events to the World Cup calendar. (U.S. Ski & Snowboard)

Rest is important to ski jumper Sarah Hendrickson, as it is to any athlete. But she says the idea of rest is more than a necessity, it's something she relishes; part of her brand, one might say.

But this season, it's taking on a new meaning.

Midway through last winter, over which Hendrickson finished 19th at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, she was approached by Sleep Number, a manufacturer of luxury mattresses.

"They've been a great partner," she said of her sponsor at the USA Nordic Summer Soiree at Jeremy Ranch Country Club. "I sleep a lot – like, 9 to 10 hours every night."

... Read the full story by Ben Ramsey in the Park Record

The Rehab Race

By Elise Saarela
July, 31 2018
Tom Rowley is recovering from an ACL tear
Tom Rowley works out at U.S. Ski & Snowboard's Center of Excellence to recover from his ACL tear.

U.S. Ski & Snowboard's Center of Excellence in Park City, Utah, is currently booming with athletes for summer strength and conditioning sessions. Rehabbing athletes are specifically making the Center of Excellence their home for the summer. With 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. sessions at least five days a week, these rehabbing athletes are working vigorously with our high performance staff to get back onto the snow.

“The gym essentially becomes your life,” says mogul skier Morgan Schild (Pittsford, N.Y.). Schild is recovering from her second ACL tear, which happened last March during the first World Cup event after the Olympics. The first time she tore her ACL, it took her 12 months to recover, which is double the time it typically takes athletes to reach a full recovery. This time around, she is working hard to get back on snow earlier. “I want to be that one story that comes back in six months, is on the snow in seven and is competing at nine. That would be my ideal plan.”

Mogul skier Tom Rowley (Long Beach, N.Y.) shares teammate Schild’s desire for getting back on snow. Rowley is also recovering from an ACL tear. “At this point I am ready to move on. I want to get back to how I was,” Rowley reflected.  

Rowley sustained his injury on his first run of his first event last season in Finland, crushing his 2018 Olympic Games dreams. However, it has also been a huge motivator for Rowley to get back into shape and get back on the snow. “It was definitely hard missing the Olympic season,” says Rowley, “I hopefully want to work my way back to where I was and be around for the next Olympic year. It’s hard to say - it’s four years away - but it’s pretty tough to miss that one and I feel like I couldn’t live with myself if I didn’t try to go for it.”

After dislocating his shoulder at a snowboardcross event in Austria, Hagen Kearney (Telluride, Colo.) is also looking forward to his future and is more than ready to be healthy and strong again. Kearney has been on the team for six years, but has never experienced an injury of this magnitude until now. He explained that there have always been rehabbing athletes in the Center of Excellence, but he never truly understood what the process was like until just a few months ago.

“For me, it’s been a full circle experience,” says Kearney. “My awareness has been expanded. It’s cool to now experience what many other athletes have experienced in the past, it has given me a bigger awareness of what it means to be an athlete. I need better self control. I need to not get ahead of myself and to be more patient.”

Kearney is 11 weeks into his rehab and hopes to be fully recovered by six months. “I try to just accept being patient and believing that when I do come back, I am going to be reborn. I am looking forward to that moment.”

Rowley also spoke to the significance of being a part of the team as a U.S. Ski & Snowboard athlete - especially one recovering from injury; “It’s easier to motivate yourself when you have someone doing it with you,” said Rowley. “I was here [Center of Excellence] alone for the majority of the winter, so it was kind of hard to get myself out there. Going through a workout when you’re all alone isn’t the easiest thing to do when your pretty bummed anyway. I appreciate my team a lot more because of it.”

The takeaway from each athlete is a newfound appreciation for their abilities as an athlete. Schild, Rowley and Kearney now truly appreciate what they can do when they are healthy, and are thankful for the ability to be world-class athletes.

“This injury process really opens your eyes to why you love the sport in the first place,” said Schild. “To me, it’s laughing with my friends on powder days and just being able to ski in the first place, with no competition in mind. Going back to the root of it is always fun and always will be.”

With the finish line well in sight, U.S. Ski & Snowboard rehabbing athletes are pushing forward with the optimism and perseverance of a champion. There is no doubt they will come out stronger than they were, hungry for more snow and for more success.

Ski Jumping, Nordic Combined Titles Awarded at L.L.Bean U.S. Championships

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
July, 31 2018
Kevin Bickner
Kevin Bickner soars to gold in the HS134m event at the L.L.Bean U.S. Ski Jumping Championships. (Tom Kelly)

Kevin Bickner (Wauconda, Ill.) and Nita Englund (Florence, Wis.) were the top U.S. finishers in HS134 competition at the 20th annual Springer Tournee/L.L.Bean U.S. Championships at the Utah Olympic Park on July 27. Taylor Fletcher (Park City, Utah) and Tara Gereghty-Moats (West Fairlee, Vt.) won their respective nordic combined U.S. titles.

U.S. athletes now move on to Europe next to complete their summer training prior to the kickoff of the World Cup season in Lillehammer, Norway in December.

“I’m excited to go over to Courchevel and see how I compare to the rest of the world right now,” said Bickner, who also won the Springer Tournee in 2015.

“We’re coming off a good training this spring and summer and we’re all ready and looking forward to getting some more competitions under our belt,” noted 2018 Olympian Ben Loomis, who finished second to Fletcher at the Springer Tournee.

RESULTS
Men and Women’s HS134
Men and Women’s HS100 Nordic Combined

Olympians Take A Somewhat Unfamiliar Center Stage

By Megan Harrod
July, 30 2018
Speaker Bureau

U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes are used to competing on the big stage – particularly those who have made the U.S. Olympic Team. However, what doesn’t often come naturally is the ability to speak confidently publicly – both in front of crowds and to the media. Just last week, though, a new program known as the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Speaker’s Bureau was launched through their Athlete Career & Education (ACE) team, led by Director Julie Glusker.

Offered to 10 elite-level U.S. Ski & Snowboard Olympic and World Championship athletes – both current and alumni – U.S. Ski & Snowboard partnered with the Slomoff Consulting Group to lead a year-long, intensive training program for a select group of athletes looking to learn what it takes to be a successful keynote speaker.
  

“We teach all of our clients to approach speaking the way great athletes approach their skill, by developing awareness, control and consistency."
- Danny Slomoff, Slomoff Consulting Group

Danny Slomoff, who has worked closely with U.S. Ski & Snowboard President & CEO Tiger Shaw for the last several years, was first introduced through Board of Trustees contacts. For the last three years, Slomoff has offered generous pro bono work to athletes and staff of U.S. Ski & Snowboard from across all sports. Oftentimes, those who have met with Slomoff have said his training has been some of the most beneficial they’ve received from the organization, off the snow.

Glusker is particularly excited about the program because it is an excellent opportunity for these athletes to share their compelling sport and life stories, build public speaking skills progressively throughout the year, and develop as effective, impactful speakers. Slomoff and his team of skilled professionals will provide personalized, targeted coaching to each of the athletes during the year, as well as introduce them to corporations and organizations and help them prepare for U.S. Ski & Snowboard events, galas, engagements, media and personal sponsor activities. Speaker’s Bureau topics include preparation and practice of presentations and talks, marketing, slide and video development, writing and publishing articles. All of this valuable, meaningful coaching is being donated by Slomoff Consulting Group.

Slomoff takes great pride in the work he does, and it certainly shows, as he grew emotional at the end of the two-day Speaker’s Bureau, following the final presentations – almost akin to a proud father.

“We teach all of our clients to approach speaking the way great athletes approach their skill, by developing awareness, control and consistency,” Slomoff remarked. “These world-class athletes understand the work needed to develop a new skill and are accustomed to putting in the coaching and practice time to master it. They were able to make progress very quickly and take leaps and bounds toward greatness. We cannot wait to see them reach their potential as peak performing speakers.

The Speaker’s Bureau entailed two full days of training with the first day being more of a group setting. Athletes met for an initial welcome session before breaking into two groups to work in small group scenarios with four skilled coaches. In these small groups, they broke down the basics of successful speaking through improv work, with the belief that successful public speaking is acting more than it is public speaking. They discussed topics like awareness of body language, tone, tempo, diction and the psychology of public speaking and connecting with your audience.

Without giving away too much, some of the key points were: try not to have an ego, care for the listener, when your content and your energy match, there is authenticity, the importance of talking with your face, voice, and fingers and having a strong message and purpose. The coaches worked with each individual athlete utilizing their strengths and improving their weaknesses. They broke down the skills and then rebuilt them over the next two days so there was a progression that athletes could see. This approach, of course, coincides well with the type of performance/feedback loop the athlete is accustomed to in their sport.

The final goal is to get these current and former U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes into speaking engagements, but more so it is to build professional skills and allow them to experience the courage it takes to make mistakes and then make improvements and move forward in a setting that may be more uncomfortable to them than the mountain. The results were positive, and the athletes may have surprised themselves more than anything.  

“It was a great opportunity to work on a skill set that will benefit athletes long after their competitive careers are over."
- Alex Deibold, U.S. Snowboard Team

U.S. Alpine Ski Team alumnus and four-time Olympian Marco Sullivan (Squaw Valley, Calif.) commented on how beneficial the training was. “It was amazing to me that the room was full of Olympians and World Champions of our respective sports but we were all acting like beginners when it came to addressing a crowded room of people,” Sullivan said. “Everyone was excited to overcome our anxiety and luckily, we are all very coachable so we made huge gains with Danny and his team in just the two days that we were together. I think that speaking and being able to express ourselves is part of being a professional sportsman that often gets overlooked. I am excited to see all of the athletes in our group progress over the next year. I think it can only be positive for the individuals and U.S. Ski & Snowboard.”

World Championship gold medalist and Olympian aerialist Ashley Caldwell (Ashburn, Va.) echoed Sullivan’s sentiments. “I loved the Speaker's Bureau this weekend. I was a little nervous going into the training but came out feeling much more confident speaking in front of any size group of people,” reflected Caldwell. “Danny and his team were awesome to work with. It was incredibly fun and humbling to learn and be embarrassed with a group of your peers, who happen to all be Olympic athletes. We all walked out of our two-day series exponentially more confident and excited about sharing our stories!”

2014 Olympic bronze medalist snowboard cross athlete Alex Deibold (Boulder, Colo.) – perhaps one of the most comfortable in front of crowds going into the two-day Speaker's Bureau – walked away with a lot of valuable learnings from the two days that have made him even more comfortable center stage. “I thought the Speaker's Bureau was a challenging and insightful experience. It was a great opportunity to work on a skill set that will benefit athletes long after their competitive careers are over. I’m looking forward to honing my newfound knowledge and hopefully putting it to use.”

Shaw was there to watch athletes give final presentations and was very impressed with how they worked together and the progress they made as a group, “I’m very excited to see you work together over the next year,” noted Shaw. “I’ve worked with Danny for years now, but it’s heartwarming to see world-class athletes mesh as a group from different sports in the organization and pair up with world-class coaches. All involved did a very good job.”

Athletes involved included: 
Mac Bohonnon (Madison, Conn., Aerials - Freestyle)
Maddie Bowman (South Lake Tahoe, Calif., Pro Halfpipe - Freeskiing)
Ashley Caldwell (Ashburn, Va., Aerials - Freestyle)
Alex Deibold (Boulder, Colo., Snowboard Cross)
Nick Goepper (Lawrenceburg, Ind., Pro Slopestyle - Freeskiing)
Hannah Kearney (Norwich, Vt., Moguls - Freestyle)
Jaelin Kauf (Alta, Wyo., Moguls - Freestyle)
Steve Nyman (Sundance, Utah, Alpine)
Marco Sullivan (Squaw Valley, Calif., Alpine Alumnus)
Andrew Weibrecht (Lake Placid, Calif., Alpine Alumnus)

Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation Breaks Ground on Athlete Housing

By Lara Carlton
July, 27 2018
Groundingbreaking ceremony at the Utah Olympic Park
Leaders of the project, including Colin Hilton, president and CEO of the Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation; Chris Robinson, Summit County Council; Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biksupski; Utah State Senator Wayne Niederhauser; and Luke Bodensteiner, chief of sport for U.S. Ski & Snowboard; as well as U.S. Snowboard Team member Jake Vedder, officially broke ground on the facility at the Utah Olympic Park.

The Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation broke ground on a new 72-unit athlete and workforce housing facility July 19 at the Utah Olympic Park. With the toss of some dirt with their golden shovels, leaders of the project, including Colin Hilton, president and CEO of the Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation; Chris Robinson, Summit County Council; Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biksupski; Utah State Senator Wayne Niederhauser; and Luke Bodensteiner, chief of sport for U.S. Ski & Snowboard; as well as U.S. Snowboard Team member Jake Vedder, officially broke ground on the facility.

“This facility is a testament to the vitality of Utah’s Olympic venues and a reflection of our ever-expanding commitment to Olympic winter sport,” said Hilton.

In an increasingly competitive real estate market, finding athlete housing in Park City becomes more challenging each year. The Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation’s $13.6 million facility will provide peace of mind for many athletes who come to train, whether they do so at the Utah Olympic Park or at U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s Center of Excellence, among other training sites in the area. The 72 units will provide 146 beds, of which 29 units will be used for short-term stays and 43 units will be used for long-term apartment rentals. The target price ranges for long-term units will be $600 – $700 per month and for the short-term units $35 – $40 per night.

“This athlete housing facility is going to add a new dimension to what we’re doing at the Legacy Foundation,” Bodensteiner said. “For our Olympians and Olympic hopefuls, easy access to low-cost housing is a real challenge for them. To be able to have access to housing like this, right where they train, is a huge benefit to their performance. I think we’re going to see that show up in Olympics in the future. And I expect this residence will attract more athletes to come train here, not only from the U.S. but also probably from around the world. And that will help Utah become known as an international Olympic training site.”  

The creation of athlete housing and continued investment in the Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation cements Utah as the premier place for winter sports. Leaders of the project hope this housing development will showcase Utah’s commitment to hosting another Olympic Winter Games in the not-so-distant future.