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Sustainability

U.S. Ski & Snowboard, a national and global leader in snow sports, is committed to addressing climate change and stewarding sustainability of winter sports. Millions globally are inspired by winter sports and enjoy healthy, active lifestyles in winter environments. Climate change threatens our winter environments with receding glaciers, rising sea levels, volatile weather cycles and less snowfall.

Spirit Of Giving Back Instilled In Keely Cashman

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
August, 2 2022
Keely Cashman Giving Back
Olympian Keely Cashman, shown here training prior to the FIS Ski World Cup opener in Soelden, Austria, won U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s Team Athletes Giving Back Award for 2022. (Ryan Mooney - U.S. Ski Team)

Growing up in a small California town not far from Yosemite National Park instilled a real love of nature in U.S. Ski Team speed racer Keely Cashman (Strawberry, Calif.). Cashman’s passion for the park and her spirit for giving back landed her U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s Team Athletes Giving Back Award for 2022. In addition to the honor, she will receive $5,000 for the Yosemite Facelift project at Yosemite National Park. It’s a nice reward for her cause, as Cashman prepares in earnest for the 2022-23 World Cup season.

The annual award is presented to a national team athlete for their efforts giving back to causes of importance to them. Each year the Yosemite Facelift holds a three-day park cleanup effort where volunteers, including Cashman’s family, help put a fresh face on the revered national park.

As a child, Cashman visited the park often with her family. “Every ski season we made a trip to compete in the coveted Silver Ski race in the park at Badger Pass. Being surrounded by such beauty made me realize, from a young age, that the land needs to be preserved and protected.”

She learned about the Yosemite Facelift program from a high school friend a few years ago. “The past few years my mom and I have volunteered,” said Cashman. “We are already looking forward to helping again this September.”

Her participation in the program has been recognized by others locally. Among the many thank you’s she received was a handwritten note from professional rock climber Timmy O’Neill.

Cashman learned about the award itself from her team teammate, Nicola Rountree-Williams, who won the honor a year earlier. Rountree-Williams, who was diagnosed with autism, won the $5,000 to support the Autistic Self Advocacy Network.

A rising star on the women’s speed team, Cashman is coming off a pivotal season where she successfully returned from injury and made a strong Olympic debut in Beijing. 

“Last season was tricky for me,” she said. “I was coming back from my first injury ever. It took a little more time than I had initially hoped to get back to the top level. Each race I got more confident. I thought my peak skiing was in China at the Olympics.”

A strong multi-event skier as a junior, Cashman had three top-14 finishes as a 16-year-old at the 2016 Youth Olympic Games in Lillehammer, including 10th in super-G. In 2019, she was fourth in combined at the Junior World Championships in Val di Fassa, Italy. A year later in Narvik, Norway, she stepped it up to bronze. 

Just nine months later, she had a breakthrough World Cup weekend in Val d’Isere, racing to 10th in super-G and finishing 15th and 17th in two downhills. But three weeks later, her racing world crashed down around her as a downhill training accident in Garmisch-Partenkirchen knocked her unconscious and put her into a German hospital for eight days. Six months later, she was back on snow.

She admits today that getting back into the starting gate at Garmisch last January was tough. “It was one of the most mentally challenging things I've ever done,” she said. “From the start, you stare at the spot where I crashed. That was crazy. But I skied decently there and was super proud of myself.”

Her Olympic experience in Beijing was another big boost to her confidence. “It was a dream come true for me,” she said. “Leading up to it with all the COVID things happening, I didn’t let it sink in until I was in the village. Once we got there, it was awesome.”

Staying in the Yanqing Athlete Village gave her the opportunity to meet athletes from around the world, both from her sport of alpine skiing as well as ice sliding sports. 

She admitted to being nervous in her opening event, taking 27th in super-G. But she had a strong downhill, finishing 17th. In the combined downhill, she skied to an impressive seventh in downhill - just .65 off the lead - before going out in slalom.

It buoyed her confidence and she’s looking forward to the 2022-23 season.

Looking ahead to the coming season with a new set of coaches and fresh, young teammates who are creating a new team dynamic, she’s feeling confident. “Right now I have a great mindset,” she said. “I've been training hard in the gym. I feel stronger than I've ever been! We have a whole new coaching staff with some younger girls coming up. It kind of feels like a fresh start."

“I’m trying to take my skiing and my confidence and the mental approach that I took into the last races of last season into the next season. So, I’m really excited – and happy!”

In a way, Cashman is emerging as a young leader on a team in a very positive transition. “We have probably the youngest speed team of any nation,” she said. “It's a really young group of girls. We have good bonds off the hill – we push each other.”

Veterans Jackie Wiles and Alice Merryweather are still on the sidelines with injuries. But their veteran presence is still felt by the team. Breezy Johnson, one of the top-ranked downhillers in the world, is expected back from injury for the season.

Like many, Cashman’s wondering how the planned Zermatt downhills will work in early November. She’s especially looking forward to running the downhill track at St. Moritz and Kvitfjell, where the women will be running the 1994 Olympic course for the first time since 1996.

Cashman takes great pride in the Team Athletes Giving Back Award – it’s a part of her overall growth as a world-class athlete. She also has a positive vibe for the future, not letting her January 2021 injury get in the way.

“Before I got injured, I had the best results that I've ever had,” she said confidently. “I just try to remember that I can ski with the best in the world. I have the skill. I have what it takes to make it. So I’ll just take it day-by-day and (move forward with) small victories.”
 

2022 BoosterSummer Fun Nationals Recap

By Lauren Beckos
July, 29 2022
2022 Booster Summer Fun Nationals
Masters at the start of the 2022 Booster Sumer Fun Nationals on the West Mile at Mt. Hood!

SFN 2022 Wrap

 
Message from Meri Stratton, the event organizer:

I want to thank all of you for whatever level of participation you added to ensure a very successful event.  It takes everyone to make it a success.  It takes a village! Thank You!

I have sent all the results, worker pictures and special winners to the webmaster to post on our website.  Hopefully she can get it all posted soon. Check back often to see if it is up  www.SummerFunNationals.com . Brian Robb, our photographer has all your photos  ready on his site to preview and purchase. brianrobbphoto.com 

How special was it to race on the West Mile!  Never in any of the previous 33 years has there been enough snow to even consider racing on Mile.  I believe we ended up with a total of 78 total participants.  Not all participated in all events, a few just worked and there were a few minor casualties both before and during the races. However, all had a wonderful time.  Racers came from all across the US and ranged in age from 13 to 84.   Having that wide age spread is what the Summer Fun Nationals is all about!  Ski racing is a lifelong family affair! 

The weather was primo.  The course sets were fabulous. The Gate Grunts were phenomenal.  The snow was superb. Timberline was awesome. The parties were sumptuous. What a fantastic set of circumstances to make for the perfect event!  THANK YOU ALL!!!

Now, let’s look to next summer.  We are scheduling the 2023 Summer Fun Nationals for July 14-15-16, 2023.  Please put it on your calendar and start making plans now.  We look forward to seeing you then. Let’s have some more ski racing fun!

2022 Masters National Championships at Sun Valley

By Lauren Beckos
July, 28 2022
Men's Class 4 Podium at the 2022 Master National Championship
Class 4 Racers celebrating with their kids in tow at the 2022 Masters National Championships!

After a 2 year delay, we threw quite the party at Sun Valley for the 2022 A Racer's Edge Masters National Championships! We had a full week of sunshine and great races. A big thank you to the Sun Valley Race Department and Meri Stratton for helping to pull it all together for us! Parties were beach style with food and drinks outside the race yurt and it was great to all be hanging out again! Congratulations to all the competitors and winners!

RACE PHOTOS: Thank you to Smiley's Mountain Photo for taking race photos during the event. View and buy photos!

VIDEO: Thank you to Steve Ferguson at Sun Video Productions for the video recaps of all the events and awards! Watch all the videos on his Vimeo Channel!

Downloadable PDF results packet

2022 Al Sise Award Winners

2022 Division Cup2022 Men's Overall National Champs2022 Women's Overall National Champs

2022 National Masters Team

 2022 Nationals Sponsors

Voisin Highlights List Of Organizational Volunteer Award Winners

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
July, 27 2022
Maggie Voisin Buddy Werner Award Recipient
Three-time Olympian Maggie Voisin was recognized with the Buddy Werner Award, honoring sportsmanship. (Mike Dawson - U.S. Ski & Snowboard)

U.S. Ski & Snowboard honored individuals and organizations for their service to the sport with its final gold and silver level awards. The gold and silver-level awards recognize volunteers and organizations around the country for their service to athletes in a variety of categories, following the acknowledgment of athletes, coaches, and clubs of the year announced earlier.

PAUL BACON AWARD (event organization)
New York Ski Educational Foundation (NYSEF)/Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA), Lake Placid, N.Y.

The Paul Bacon Award for event organization went to Lake Placid’s New York Ski Educational Foundation (NYSEF) and Olympic Regional Development Authority. The two partnering organizations were recognized for the wide array of events they produced during challenging times.

The 2021-22 season came after a series of significant upgrades to venues by ORDA in anticipation of the upcoming 2023 World University Games. NYSEF and ORDA stepped up during Christmas to produce the Olympic Trials for Ski Jumping and Nordic Combined on the newly-renovated ski jumps. They were back on the nordic venues in March for the finale of the FIS Nordic Combined Continental Cup and women’s FIS Ski Jumping Continental Cup.

In February, NYSEF produced calendared NorAm Cup women’s races but also added a men’s series at the last minute after COVID restrictions in Quebec forced schedule changes. They also stepped up to run men’s super-G and combined events that had to be moved because of low snow elsewhere. In all, they ran 14 FIS events over a two-week period.

In addition, they also hosted a U.S. Ski & Snowboard Hole Shot ski cross and snowboardcross event, plus a USASA Futures Tour at Gore Mountain - new venues for each tour. At the newly-remodeled Mount Van Hoevenberg venue, they held a cross-country Super Tour in January as well as U.S. Biathlon national championships in March. Also on the calendar was the U.S. Collegiate Ski Association national championships in alpine and freeride at Whiteface Mountain, plus cross country at Mount Van Hoevenberg in March.

JOHN J. CLAIR AWARD (service to national teams)
Rex Bell, Portland, Maine

Rex Bell, a pioneering leader in ski jumping and nordic combined, was honored with the John J. Clair Award for his service to national teams. A former ski jumper and coach himself, Bell was a founder of USA Nordic and continues to be a strong supporter of its programs.

A tireless supporter of ski jumping, Bell has continued to fight to bring the FIS Ski Jumping World Cup back to America. He was successful in that endeavor, with the tour coming back to Iron Mountain, Mich. next February. The last event in America was at Park City in 2004.

Bell chaired the USA Nordic board until 2020 and remains active on its executive committee. He also represents the USA on the FIS Equipment Subcommittee. He is a real estate developer in Maine and his company, Northland Enterprises, is a USA Nordic sponsor.

BUD & MARY LITTLE AWARD (service to USOPC or FIS)
Jeff Weinman, Park City, Utah

U.S. Ski & Snowboard Director of Competition Services Jeff Weinman (Park City, Utah) was honored with the Bud & Mary Little Award for service to the International Ski & Snowboard Federation (FIS). The award memorializes longtime FIS vice president Bud Little.

Weinman joined U.S. Ski & Snowboard in 1998 to oversee its National Points System and to manage competition rules. Over nearly a quarter century, he became a vital cog within global ranking systems with FIS. During his tenure, Weinman was instrumental in reforming the National Points system and helping usher it into the electronic age. It is an important role as points are the foundation of all competition rankings.

Along the way, he established a synergistic relationship with FIS staff and has had a strong voice in classification system improvements. In 2007, he was appointed to the FIS Classification Committee, following in the footsteps of Americans Warren Lowry and Bruce Crane. In 2010, FIS asked Weinman to take on the chairman’s role.

A quiet leader, Weinman’s work with U.S. Ski & Snowboard from ranking systems to rules management to competition guide production has played a vital role for officials, clubs, coaches, and athletes across the country and the world.

J. LELAND SOSMAN AWARD (service to physician’s pool)
Dr. Heather Cichanowski, St. Paul, Minn. 

Dr. Heather Cichanowski, the head team physician for the U.S. Cross Country Ski Team, was honored with the J. Leland Sosman Award for her service to the team’s physician’s pool. 

The J. Leland Sosman Award is presented annually in recognition of service to the U.S. Ski & Snowboard volunteer physician’s pool. It is named in honor of Dr. Sosman, affectionately known as ‘Sos,’ who was a volunteer leader and competition official known for his energy, persistence, and passion for U.S. Ski & Snowboard sports. This award recognizes an individual from the medical community who best exemplifies these traits.

Dr. Cichanowski, who serves as medical director for women’s sports medicine at TRIA Orthopedics in Woodbury, has been engaged with the team’s physician’s pool since 2011 and was named head cross physician in 2021.

She is known across the team as one of the most dedicated physicians, managing athlete care on a regular basis and going out of her way to guide and coordinate the details through her strong communications with athletes, coaches and parents. Despite the challenges of the pandemic, she put in significant volunteer time leading up to the Beijing Olympics, helping guide cross country athletes through a challenging environment.

BUDDY WERNER AWARD (sportsmanship)
Maggie Voisin, Whitefish, Mont.

Three-time Olympian Maggie Voisin (Whitefish, Mont.) was recognized with the Buddy Werner Award, honoring sportsmanship. The award is named in honor of the great Buddy Werner, a great downhill ski racer from the 1950s and ‘60s who was known for his great caring attitude towards his teammates.

Voisin was cited as being the epitome of athletic sportsmanship. One of the world’s top freeski slopestyle athletes, Voisin is known for her supportive and encouraging personality with teammates. She has been integral in creating a family dynamic within the freeski slopestyle world.

She is known for her support of all other female athletes on the global tour - regardless of their team. When she won, she won with grace. And when she didn’t, she kept cheering for others. This past season, Voisin also served as the athlete liaison for freeski slopestyle, ensuring that her team’s wants and needs were addressed and also helping enhance the culture, equality, and opportunity for all U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes.

Her peers recognized her with the Buddy Werner Award in honor of her selflessness on and off the hill, her humility in success, and her demeanor as an athlete and a friend - true characteristics of sportsmanship.

WEST FAMILY CUP (event officials)
Barb Wagner, Platsburgh, N.Y.

Barb Wagner (Lake Placid, N.Y.), one of U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s most dedicated alpine ski racing officials, was recognized with the West Family Cup. Named in memory of noted volunteer Fraser West and his wife Teddy, the West Family Cup is presented annually to recognize a long-serving competition official.

Wagner is a longstanding start referee who puts in thousands of miles a year to ensure she will be standing in the starting gate for most of the races that take place at both Whiteface Mountain in New York and Sugarbush, Vt., serving both NYSEF and Green Mountain Valley School clubs. Her nomination came on a wave of support from fellow officials at both club programs.

She was acknowledged for her true dedication to the role, her knowledge of the rules and her ability to work with athletes, coaches, and fellow officials. Her take-charge, diligent demeanor is a vital trait in her role as the start referee where she has to balance course holds, time changes, weather, and more. She is typically one of the first on a chairlift in the morning and stays until the very last racer has hit the finish line.

Most of all, her nominators on both sides of Lake Champlain recognized her for the friendly and welcoming smile on her face as she very professionally engages in her role as a start referee - very much in the spirit the late Fraser West intended with the West Family Cup award.

Calm demeanor is not necessarily what she’s known for - she’s more of a presence at the start, directing everyone to be in place for a timely race. In charge, Diligent, passionate, those are words I’d use. Rarely leaves the start from being the first on the chair in the morning until the last racer hits the finish line.

WESTHAVEN AWARD (service as technical delegate)
Greg Johnson, Vail, Colo.

One of America’s most experienced alpine technical delegates, Greg Johnson (Vail, Colo.) has been honored with the Westhaven Award for his service as a TD. Johnson has been a U.S. Ski & Snowboard official since 1983, becoming an International Ski & Snowboard Federation TD in 1995. The Westhaven Award is presented annually in memory of longtime TD Fraser West. It dates back to 1991.

Beginning his career as an athlete, he moved into professional race department management and event organization in 1982, quickly becoming productive and supportive of race organizers. His work took him literally around the globe serving as a FIS TD at some of the biggest races in the world.

In only his third year as a FIS TD, he served at the 1998 Lake Louise World Cups. In 2007 he became the first American TD (and one of only two, to date) to serve as TD at the fabled Hahnenkamm in Kitzbϋhel, working with the legendary three-time Olympic champion Tony Sailor in his final event as chief of race. He also became only the second American (Hank Tauber the other) to serve as an Olympic TD when he worked the men’s races at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games at Whistler, B.C.

Back in America, Johnson has worked for decades at races. Largely due to his role in producing the acclaimed  Birds of Prey World Cups, at Beaver Creek, he has gained high respect in course preparation, protection, and safety. He has been a frequent contributor at clinics, sharing his knowledge with others. 

After retiring from his ski industry role in 2020, Johnson has had even more time to serve. This past season he hit a personal mark serving as a TD for 35 race CODEXs.

RUSSELL WILDER AWARD (service to youth)
Rick Kapala, Sun Valley, Idaho
Youth Sports Alliance, Park City, Utah

Two recipients were recognized with the Russell Wilder Award for service to youth. Longtime Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation cross-country leader Rick Kapala (Sun Valley, Idaho) and the Youth Sports Alliance (Park City, Utah) were each recognized for their long service to youth. The award is the second oldest from U.S. Ski & Snowboard, dating back to 1955. 

Kapala, who is retiring from his role as program director and head coach for cross country at the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation after 35 years, was recognized for his work in developing Sun Valley into one of the premier cross country clubs in America. He has long been acknowledged for not only providing youth with opportunities to grow into top, elite athletes, but also building an environment that focuses on being good citizens and good people, as well.

He was cited for his impact on literally thousands of youth and their families in the Wood River Valley. Kapala’s mission has been to develop character in young people and to teach a lifelong respect for the outdoors that goes far beyond sport.

His work also extended well beyond just Sun Valley. He was long been actively engaged in national programs, both as a regular host of events as well as his participation in governance at a national level. His impact has been felt across the Wood River Valley and the entire nation.

The Youth Sports Alliance (YSA), based in Park City, Utah, was established as a part of the legacy of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games to increase the number of children participating in winter sport programs in the local area. Now 20 years later, YSA remains committed to providing tangible need-based financial assistance to ensure that all youth can participate in sport. It's popular introductory Get Out & Play and ACTiV8 programs have become an outstanding feeder into local clubs across a wide array of sports.

Each year YSA engages 3,300 youth in its communities through after-school programs, need-based scholarships, and financial support - all in partnership with local winter sport clubs. It is a diverse program covering winter sports from skiing to riding to figure skating, hockey, and luge. During the pandemic, YSA doubled down to make a major effort to ensure that kids still had an opportunity to participate in sport. 

In the 2021-22 season, 902 students participated in YSA ski and ride programs. Of those, 27% were scholarshipped by YSA and 30% were minority students. The program covers 20 area schools in the Park City, South Summit, and Wasatch school districts.

The mission of YSA’s programs go well beyond sport, promoting good sportsmanship, healthy lifestyles and education. Since its inception in 2002, YSA has become integral in the community and helping the community take advantage of the 2002 Olympic legacy by promoting sport and building good citizens among its youth.

 

Cashman Featured In FIS Behind-The-Scenes

By Megan Harrod
July, 27 2022
Keely Cashman
Olympian Keely Cashman, shown here training in Val Senales in Schnalstal, Italy prior to Soelden in 2021, was recently featured in the International Ski Federation's (FIS) recent behind-the-scenes feature. (Ryan Mooney - U.S. Ski Team)

Olympian Keely Cashman was recently featured in the International Ski Federation's (FIS) recent behind-the-scenes feature. In the piece, she talks about her love of skiing, growing up in a small town in California, and her interests off the mountain. Cashman also discusses her season-ending injury during the 2020-21 season after starting the season off with a string of strong results. The injury had her sidelined for what would have been her first World Championships. 

 

ELLE Feature: Shiffrin Lost the Olympics But Won the World

By Megan Harrod
July, 27 2022
Shiffrin Elle Feature
The August edition of ELLE features two-time Olympic champion and six-time world champion Mikaela Shiffrin, as she talks in depth with writer Rose Minutaglio about topics such as mental health, performance pressure, and trauma. (Caleb Santiago Alvarado)

The August edition of ELLE features two-time Olympic champion and six-time world champion Mikaela Shiffrin, as she talks in depth with writer Rose Minutaglio about topics such as mental health, performance pressure, and trauma. After crashing and DNFin in her three marquee events at the Beijing 2022 Olympics, Shiffrin is using her experience to remind us that no one—not even an Olympian—is immune to mental health issues.

Minutaglio writes, 

Mikaela Shiffrin is used to steering through twists and turns. But nothing could have prepared the champion Alpine skier for the last two years: the sudden death of her father, a debilitating back injury, and a positive COVID-19 test that forced her to miss some World Cup races. Then, in one of the most shocking sequences in the sport’s history, Shiffrin was disqualified from not one, not two, but three races at the 2022 Winter Olympic Games. After stumbling through the slalom, her signature event, she veered off to the side of the course, took her skis off, and bowed her head as cameras zoomed in.

“Everybody experiences the hard days when it’s difficult to keep a positive attitude, and you just kind of need to sit down and cry,” Shiffrin says. “Except, for me, it all became a very public thing.”

At that moment, on top of an Olympic mountain, Shiffrin bottomed out. In the past, she might have concealed her burnout with platitudes about being mentally tough or pushing through the pain. This time, Shiffrin knew that in order to move forward, she needed to look back. “I’m a different person than I was,” she says, “and I didn’t want to hide what I’m feeling anymore.”

By sharing honestly, Shiffrin joins the ranks of major female athletes in recent history who’ve shined a light on once-taboo subjects like mental health, trauma, and performance pressure. “It’s scary,” she says, “because it shows vulnerability. But there’s no reason to feel shame anymore.”

Shiffrin has become a spokesperson for mental health since the tragic loss of her father Jeff in 2020, then dealing with the isolation of COVID-19 for two years. During the 2021-22 Olympic season, Shiffrin started the season off strong, with a win at the FIS Ski World Cup opener in Soelden, Austria, then struggled with nagging back pain that had her sidelined from training before falling to COVID and having to quarantine for 10 days in the middle of the busiest period of technical races over the holidays, and went into the Olympics completely exhausted, only to fail on the world's stage.

However, Shiffrin handled the failure with grace and ended up prevailing by finishing the season with a strong push at the final World Cup races to earn herself the biggest annual prize in ski racing—her fourth overall World Cup title. 

Read the full story at ELLE.com.

Vonn Talks Transitioning To Life After Skiing On TODAY

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
July, 26 2022
Vonn on TODAY Show
Olympic champion and U.S. Ski Team alumna Lindsey Vonn recently joined Hoda and Jenna on TODAY to talk about transitioning to life after professional skiing.

Olympic champion Lindsey Vonn recently joined Hoda and Jenna on TODAY to talk about transitioning to life after professional skiing, as well as how she's learned to manage her insomnia with Idorsia. She also talks about how she’s enjoying her retirement, being inducted into the Olympic Hall of Fame, and more.

 

U.S. Ski & Snowboard Announces Matt Gnoza as Freestyle Sport Director

By Lara Carlton
July, 21 2022
Matt Gnoza freestyle coach
Longtime moguls coach Matt Gnoza was promoted to U.S. Ski & Snowboard's Freestyle Sport Director. (Steven Earl Photography)

U.S. Ski & Snowboard announced the promotion of Matt Gnoza to Freestyle Sport Director. Gnoza brings extensive freestyle leadership and coaching experience to his new position.

Gnoza began his career at U.S. Ski & Snowboard as the Moguls C Team coach in 2014 and was promoted to Head Moguls Coach in 2015. He coached the 2018 and 2022 Olympic teams and brought home silver with Jaelin Kauf’s performance in Beijing in February. Prior to U.S. Ski & Snowboard, Gnoza served as the Action Sports Athletic Director and Freestyle Head Coach at Killington Mountain School from 1994 to 2014. He has over 28 years of coaching experience.

Gnoza was instrumental in helping to include dual moguls in the 2026 Olympic program, having brought the elite international moguls community together for a successful petition to the International Ski Federation and the International Olympic Committee to have the sport confirmed in June. Throughout his career, Gnoza has been committed to continuing to learn, grow and develop as a coach and leader, as well as apply those same principles to his teams.

“I am deeply invested in the U.S. freestyle community and am excited to be in this new role at U.S. Ski & Snowboard,” said Gnoza. “Freestyle has a rich history in the U.S. and I look forward to extending our sport's legacy for years to come. We have some serious momentum building from our hugely successful 2022 U.S. Olympic Freestyle Team and I look forward to developing this program’s incredible potential. I am excited to work with our elite teams as well as the development pipeline to realize success at every level.”

With Gnoza’s promotion, Bryon Wilson takes over as Head Moguls Coach for the U.S. Freestyle Ski Team. 

As Freestyle Sport Director, Gnoza’s scope extends from the elite to the grassroots levels. He will oversee the U.S. national moguls and aerials ski teams, as well as be tasked with developing and managing a high-quality talent identification and development program for freestyle athletes, coaches, officials and judges to ensure the U.S. not only remains competitive in the discipline, but has a solid foundation and infrastructure to support excellence in freestyle skiing long term.  

“Matt brings a tremendous amount of coaching and leadership experience to this role,” said Chief of Sport Anouk Patty. “He has a great vision for the sport at both the grassroots and at the elite level and he knows what he needs to do to implement that vision.”

Immediate goals for Gnoza are to recruit top talent to round out the national team’s staff. One of his first moves as director was to name a dedicated Moguls D Team coach, Josh Kober. “This is an investment in development, ensuring we have a thriving pipeline to draw from for the next two to three Olympic cycles at least,” said Gnoza. “Development is a theme for freestyle right now. I am spending my first weeks and months on the job meeting with key stakeholders from the freestyle community and the organization to understand how we build on our national team’s success while simultaneously developing the up-and-comers and supporting our clubs.”

Gnoza will look to revamp the Project Gold Program, including extending the program to aerials, to provide targeted opportunities for young, developing athletes to collaborate and learn from each other, as well as from the national team at select national camps throughout the training season. In order to ensure there is a pipeline of development talent to pull from, Gnoza will work with U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s sport education department to update long-term athlete development systems and freestyle coaches’ education offerings. 

Through enhancing relationships with clubs, Gnoza will create an open and collaborative dialogue with the nation’s freestyle community. On the event side, Gnoza will work towards a well-developed NorAm tour and pursue additional FIS Freestyle World Cup opportunities. 

Gnoza’s appointment as the Freestyle Sport Director position is part of an organizational restructure for U.S. Ski & Snowboard. Under his leadership, freestyle stands on its own and reports directly to the Chief of Sport. 

Hall, Kim Nominated for 2022 ESPYS

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
July, 12 2022
Alex Hall
Olympic champion Alex Hall, pictured here with teammate Nick Goepper celebrating their 1-2 finish in freeski slopestyle at Beijing 2022, is nominated for an ESPY Award in the Best Athlete - Men's Action Sports category this year. (Ryan Escandon - U.S. Ski & Snowboard)

Two-time Olympic champion Chloe Kim and Olympic gold medalist Alex Hall, who each earned gold medals at Beijing 2022, are nominated for the 2022 ESPY Awards. 

Kim, who is no stranger to the ESPYs (with five to her name already), is nominated in the Best Athlete - Women's Action Sports category, while Hall is up for Best Athlete - Men's Action Sports. 

The award show gathers top celebrities from sports and entertainment to commemorate the past year in sports by recognizing major sports achievements, reliving unforgettable moments, and saluting the leading performers and performances. Honorees will include college basketball analyst Dick Vitale receiving the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance and boxing champion Vitali Klitschko who will receive the Arthur Ashe Courage award. NBA Finals MVP, Stephen Curry, will host this year's show.  

Voting for the awards is open at www.espn.com/espys, and fans can vote multiple times - so vote for your favorite U.S. Ski & Snowboard athlete, and then vote again and again. And again. Voting for all categories will be open until Sunday, July 17 at 8 p.m. EST and the ESPYS will be held on Wednesday, July 20 at 8 p.m. EST on ABC.

VOTE NOW