Colorado Ski and Snowboard Hall of Fame announces new class
VAIL — The Colorado Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame has announced the election of four sport builders and athletes and one pioneer of the ski industry to be inducted into the Hall of Fame in October.
Elected from a deserving group of 15 finalists, the Class of 2015 includes sport builders and athletes Dr. Jack Eck, Ceil Folz, George “Bud” Marolt, Kent Myers, and as well as pioneer Bob Singley.
The five new inductees join a prestigious roster of Hall of Fame athletes, sport builders and visionaries who made major contributions to Colorado’s ski industry over many decades.
They’ll be formally inducted during the 39th annual Colorado Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame Gala at the Vail Marriott Mountain Resort on Oct. 2.
“We are pleased to honor this incredible class of Hall of Fame inductees selected from an inspiring list of richly deserving nominees,” said Susie Tjossem, executive director of the Colorado Ski & Snowboard Museum Hall of Fame. “The voting panel truly had a tough task in selecting only five from among so many great candidates.”
This year’s class was selected from 15 finalists, including Pam Conklin, Shannon Dunn, Cheryl Jensen, Scott Kennett, John Lovett, Paul Major, Mike and Steve Marolt, John McBride, Casey Puckett, Chris Puckett and Charles Smith.
The Colorado Ski & Snowboard Museum and Hall of Fame is located on the third level of the Vail Village parking structure. It is a trove of ski and snowboard history with themed galleries displaying artifacts, narratives and film documentaries including the featured story of famed 10th Mountain Division training at Colorado’s Camp Hale.
For more information about the Ski & Snowboard Museum, call 970-476-1876 or visit http://www.skimuseum.net.
Dr. Jack Eck, Sport Builder
Since 1971, Jack Eck has been on the ground floor of many of the life-saving techniques used on-hill to treat injured skiers. He applied his experience as a Vietnam medic to shape advanced orthopedic and medical first-responder techniques used by the ski patrol. His practices influenced the U.S. Ski Team and were adopted by resorts nationwide. He played a lead role in gaining acceptance of ski brakes to replace injury prone safety straps. He established an emergency medical services system, the professional ski patrol basic qualification requirements and did annual training for new patrollers. He was the course medical director for the 1989 and 1999 FIS World Alpine Ski Championships and was the medical committee chairman for the 2015 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships.
Ceil Folz, Sport Builder
Ceil Folz has worked for the Vail Valley Foundation since 1989 and has been president of the Vail Valley Foundation since 1999. Her leadership created a huge amount of support for the annual World Cup alpine events in Beaver Creek. As president of the Vail Valley Foundation, she was responsible for executing the successful bid and execution of the 2015 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships, which took the world-class event to new heights in February. Folz and her staff deserve credit for recruiting and directing more than 2,200 volunteers, accommodating the huge crowds that watched the races and organizing TV coverage that was broadcast around the world, reaching 800 million people. She has provided leadership to support World Cup skiing in Colorado.
George ‘Bud’ Marolt, Athlete AND Sport Builder
Bud Marolt is the eldest of the Marolt brothers, who hail from Aspen. An accomplished ski racer, he won the 1950 R.M. Downhill, Slalom and Combined Championships and was a forerunner in the 1950 FIS World Championships in Aspen. By age 20, he was a ski instructor and certified National Ski Patrolman. He was a member of the 1952 national team and qualified for the 1952 Olympic team but was unable to participate because of family obligations. He continued to patrol and teach in Aspen through 1953. After moving to Denver, he became involved with Gordie Wren at Loveland Ski School. He started kids ski programs that brought 2,500 kids from Denver to ski each winter. He founded the Loveland Basin Ski Club and established the Loveland Derby, the oldest amateur ski race in the U.S. He served as president of RMSIA, helping build the organization. He brought Clif Taylor to Loveland to introduce the Graduated Length Method. All at the same time, his “day job” was a hard goods buyer for Denver Dry Goods and consultant for Rosemont boots.
Kent Myers, Sport Builder
Kent Myers’ career in ski resort marketing spanned five Colorado ski resorts — Copper Mountain, Winter Park, Steamboat, Vail and Beaver Creek — before starting Airplanners LLC, which is best known for direct air service programs to ski resorts. At Winter Park, Kent started its transformation to a destination resort. During his time at Steamboat, he created the first kids ski free promotion and nonstop air service to Yampa Valley Regional Airport. At Vail, he started the successful Fly Vail campaign, and at Beaver Creek he shepherded development of Strawberry Park, redevelopment of Beaver Creek Village and the ski connection to Arrowhead. Airplanners LLC develops and manages commercial air service for resort communities through alliances between the local airports, communities and airlines. Through airline guarantees, resort community airports have attracted new direct flights, saving the desirable destination skiers valuable time and reducing travel hassle. Direct flights have resulted in increased skier days.
Bob Singley, Athlete ANd Pioneer
Bob Singley is a humble man, yet this colorful character is credited with being the visionary and innovator of freestyle and extreme skiing. A legendary Winter Park ski patroller in the 1960s, his enthusiastic and infectious joy for skiing and unbelievable skills pushed the boundaries and expanded the sport of skiing from the beautifully executed parallel turns of the 1940s into the unimaginable feats of freestyle and extreme skiing that we see today. This pioneer of skiing helped found Fraser’s Tirebitter Ski Club, which he still runs today. The club is based on having fun instead of serious ski racing, which aligns with Singley’s rule-eschewing ethos. The club’s signature ski race, the Singley Epworth Cup, is one of the nation’s longest running summer ski races — a tribute to grassroots fun-first ski competitions. Singley’s audacious skiing lead him to be a skiing stuntman in pal Robert Redford’s “Downhill Racer” as well as the James Bond movie “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.” New hips and knees are lingering evidence of the skiing escapades that made him one of the most memorable ski patrollers in Colorado history.
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