Industry News 1/19/2016

B$Z: OIWC Selects 2016 Professional Mentoring Program Mentees and Mentors

The Outdoors Industries Women’s Coalition (OIWC), the only organization focused on the inclusion of women in the outdoors from participant to CEO, has selected 26 rising industry leaders to join its 2016 Professional Mentoring Program class. It is the only cross-company, cross-industry mentoring program for women in the outdoor, bike, snow, and run industries.

The 9-month program is designed to create a unique one-on-one relationship between seasoned professionals and up-and-coming leaders that takes mentees out of their day-to-day activities to plan for their future, while developing a comprehensive strategy to achieve their career goals. Not only does the program lead to their professional success, but it allows mentors and mentees to contribute on a higher level in their respective companies and to the industry as a whole.

“Research shows that as women progress in their careers, they don’t advance to senior level positions, with only 4 percent of all C-suite positions being held by women,” said Amy Luther, OIWC program director. “As OIWC establishes the outdoor industry and its companies as the employers of choice for women, the Professional Mentoring Program is an opportunity to re-engage mid-level employees to enhance the retention of top-tier talent for a more robust pool of C-suite candidates across all industries.”

Now in its fourth year, the Professional Mentoring Program is part of OIWC’s ongoing efforts to establish outdoor industry companies as the employers of choice for women and the brands of choice for female consumers.

Mentees and Mentors of the 2016 OIWC Mentoring Program include:

2016 OIWC Professional Mentoring Program Mentees

  • Stephanie Bennett, Supply Chain Manager - K2 Sports

  • Lesley Betts, Product Manager (Hardgoods) - Burton Snowboards

  • Julia Blumenfeld, Communications Marketing Manager - Head USA

  • Heather Cooper, Director of Customer Marketing - Clif Bar

  • Melissa Davis, Director Business Technology (The North Face, Jansport, Lucy) - VF Corporation

  • Meg Fogg, Sales Representative/Manager - Alpin Sales

  • Rachel Gitajn, Lead Design Engineer - QBP

  • Tiffany Hampshire, Director of Operations - Backcountry Access

  • Courtney Hans, Adventure Travel Program Manager - REI

  • Mae Harris, Business Development Manager - Optic Nerve

  • Summer Henderson, Brand Director - Yakima

  • Jessica Hollister, Public Relations Manager - The North Face

  • Sharon Houghton, Director of Sales (Backpacker Magazine and Climbing Magazine) - Active Interest Media

  • Dana Howe, Retailer Relations Manager - Grassroots Outdoor Alliance

  • Shannon Jidas, Associate Brand Manager - Leatherman

  • Sally Johnson, Major Events and Activation Manager - REI

  • Sarah MacLeod, Senior Global Demand Planning and Inventory Manager - Burton Snowboards

  • Carla McCord, Marketing Manager - Pivot Cycles

  • Josie Norris, Program Manager - The Conservation Alliance

  • Theresa Salus, Outdoor Program and Outreach Marketing Manager - REI

  • Bri Simpson, Store Manager - REI

  • Jennifer Stevens, Manager Operations - NPD Group - Sports

  • Katie Thompson, Industrial Design Manager - QBP

  • Taldi Walter, Community Affairs Program Manager - REI

  • Wen Yang, Senior Quality Engineer - Skullcandy

2016 OIWC Professional Mentoring Program Mentors

  • Amy Beck, Vice President of Sales - Lucy

  • Karen Bliss, Vice President of Marketing - Advanced Sports International

  • Liz Braund, Vice President of Merchandising and Design - Royal Robbins

  • Linda Brunzell, Chief Marketing Officer - Wolverine World Wide - Merrell

  • Nedra Fabito, Vice President of Product - Eagle Creek

  • Robin Hall, Chief Information Officer - SmartWool

  • Audrey Hicks, Chief Operating Officer/Chief Financial Officer - Miir

  • Lisa Jewett, Organizational Development and Compensation Senior Manager - Zappos

  • Jessica Klodnicki, Executive Vice President and General Manager - Bell, Blackburn and C-Preme brands, part of BRG Sports

  • Josee Larocque, Senior Vice President of Operations - Burton Snowboards

  • Sandi Lennehan, Chief Financial Officer - Yakima

  • Rachel Ligtenberg, Regional Retail Vice President - REI

  • Jen Martin, Vice President of Human Resources - Arc’teryx

  • Liz Mathias, Chief Operating Officer - McNett

  • Laura Miera, Vice President of Technical Product Development - Marmot

  • LaVonne Olsen, Vice President of People, Values and Culture - Superfeet

  • Michele Orr, GMM Apparel - REI

  • Bobbie Parisi, Vice President of Marketing - Leatherman

  • Jennifer Pringle, Vice President of Marketing - Outdoor Industry Association

  • Lori Richman, Vice President of Organizational Development - QBP

  • Anita Rogers, Vice President of Finance - Industrial Revolution, Inc.

  • Nora Stowell, Global Sales Leader - W.L. Gore & Associates

  • Kerri Turri, Vice President of Human Resources - CamelBak

  • Elysa Walk, Vice President of Specialty Accounts - Burton Snowboards

  • Mona West, Vice President of Emerging Brands - Cascade Designs

  • Anne Wiper, Vice President of Product Development - SmartWool

For additional information about the Professional Mentoring Program or to receive email alerts about the 2017 Professional Mentoring Program, visit