Group aims to put athlete in the Olympics |

Group aims to put athlete in the Olympics

Veronica Whitney

The National Brotherhood of Skiers’ goal is to have several athletes on the podium in the next winter Olympics, said Schone Malliet, executive vice president of the organization.And the National Brotherhood of Skiers can help black skiers such as Ralph Green, a member of the U.S. Disabled Ski Team, to achieve that dream, Malliet added.”The cost of being an elite athlete is about $30,000 a year,” Malliet said. “That’s why, through our programs, we subsidize their competition expenses.”The nonprofit ski organization’s mission is to identify, develop and support black athletes who can win international and Olympic winter sports competitions representing the United States. The National Brotherhood of Skiers Summit, which takes place every year, is the biggest fund-raiser for athlete scholarships and training.The National Brotherhood of Skiers brings more than 20,000 African Americans to major resorts each year, Malliet said. “We are the largest ski organization in the United States with 84 clubs in 41 cities,” Malliet said.The Summit is the largest, continuously running ski convention in America and has been hosted by the National Brotherhood of Skiers for the last 30 years. Unlike other ski weeks, in addition to winter sports access and competitions, this event includes the organization’s annual meeting, a full program of night-time parties, concerts, a formal dinner and a youth camp. “We have 2,000 people here in Vail this year,” said Andrea Yowman, president of the National Brotherhood of Skiers. “People like the social aspect of the organization because it’s an awesome opportunity for networking and socializing.”And we’re expanding,” Yowman added. “We started out with downhill and we’re expanding into snowboarding and freestyle.”The National Brotherhood of Skiers, founded in February 1973 in Aspen and incorporated in 1975, began with 13 black ski clubs from across the country meeting annually to ski.Vail, Colorado

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