It’s that time of year where we reflect on the past and plan for the coming year. I am extremely thankful for this year and all the lessons learned. Most importantly, I am grateful for my family, friends, and the kindness of strangers that supported me in all I do and encourage me to dream big. So without any further or do, Lady Hawk’s 2015 by the numbers.
This is probably the catalyst in my life, let alone the year. In February, I traveled to Nozawa Japan, outside of Nagano for a week of skiing powder with friends. I arrived two days early, since I wanted to explore the city and also take some time to ski by myself.
I went out the morning of February 15th, it was snowing and there wasn’t much in the way of visibility. I decided to go and ski in the trees, which led me off piste and down the mountain to what I thought was the mouth of canyon. There was no mouth at the end of the canyon and I was lost in the backcountry for 29 hours. I am thankful for my friends and former colleagues at Black Diamond for leading the rescue, Jacqui the Australian, who translated from Japanese to English, Search and Rescue Nozawa, and finally my higher power for watching over me that night. Every day I continue to process what happened that day and haven’t really shared the story till now. I don’t know when or if I will ever get over this experience, but sharing this here is a start.
I still can’t believe this number when I see it. This is all happened while traveling throughout the US and Canada for my role at Marmot. Many of my trips, involved flying to see our customers and show them our women’s categories. I love this part about my job and being the one in front of the customer to champion our women’s collection, is exactly what I love doing. Being the only female sales manager at Marmot (and only one of handful in the industry) has given me the opportunity to work directly with our retailers on business development of their women’s assortments. I have run point on everything to line presentations, product enhancement strategies, sales presentations, and traveling to our retailers for women’s specific events. One of my favorite events from this past year was going to Adventure 16 Ladies Night back in November. There were a number of industry reps and sales manager who attended the event in San Diego. It was an opportunity interact with customers, answer questions, and share stories of our outdoor experiences. I came prepared, with a ton of Marmot Schwag for the event, so we were a popular brand that night. What I liked so much about the event is that A16 recognized that they needed to have a Ladies Only event to draw in more female outdoor enthusiast and have an open forum so that they could ask questions on products, get discounts on merchandise, and just have a FUN night out.
Hand’s down, one of my most favorite things about my job is showing our women’s categories – I know, it’s weird. But there is something to be said being in front of our retail partners and giving a solid line showing, especially with women’s specific products. In the spring of 2015, Marmot asked that I join the sales force in key line showing meetings. This included going to key accounts in North America, GOA, industry trade shows, and finally giving a presentation on the globals trends of women’s buying power at Marmot’s F16 Global Sales Meeting. In my presentation, “SheConomy”, where I presented to our sales force the global trends, strategies, tactics, and information that can be used when presenting our brand to women. This was a large task, but at the end by giving our sales team more information on how to be strategic in their partnership meetings, will ultimately make Marmot a better brand. I am looking forward to presenting on this topic more and continuing to champion women’s categories in the outdoor and active lifestyle markets.
I feel like a Jonny Cash song, “Crossed the deserts bare, man I’ve breatherd the mountain air, man Travel, I’ve had my share, man I’ve been everywhere.”
True that. Looking at my United Airlines miles and cities traveled, I have to say that my favorite place that I went this year was Pittsburgh, PA. I had never been to Pittsburgh, didn’t know much about it – other than the Steelers and Heinz ketchup is based there. Well, I have been to Pittsburgh 5 times this year visiting one of the largest US retailers, Dicks Sporting Goods. I was asked to be apart of these meetings and develop strategies for Marmot’s women’s assortment in their stores. Dick’s is one of the most sophisticated retailers in the nation and I have been able to learn more about successful strategies that can be applied to other distribution channels. I am looking forward to going back out there to present our Spring collection, but also eating one of the most iconic sandwiches known to man – The Primanti Sandwich.
I first saw Michael Franti and Spearhead at the Showbox in Seattle in 1999 and was blown away – his music, lyrics, and his message spoke to me on so many levels.
If you haven’t heard his music, I suggest you listen to this live performance from my hometown music station KEXP. Besides being an amazing musician, he also is a philanthropist having started a foundation called Do It for the Love. The foundation works with the music industry and provides live music concert wishes to people living with life-threatening illnesses, children with various challenges and wounded veterans. I have volunteered for the organization several times and have seen first hand the positive impact that this experience makes on the grantee. Franti recognized that concerts are probably one of the best medicine one could receive. He started this foundation with his wife Sarah, who is a Marmot ambassador and together they have made over 500 concert grants happen since its inception. Music is truly uplifting for the soul and I am so thankful to be associated with this organization.
My life would not be complete without the love and support of my husband, Chris. It takes a confident man, to support Lady Hawk and put up with all the traveling and working non stop – but he does it. Having gone through my experience lost in the backcountry, I really had to look deep at myself and our relationship. I am more confident today that this man was meant to be my husband and guide in life. Here is to many more life experiences with Chris.
With my new role at Marmot and travel commitments, I had to pass the torch onto a fellow industry leader and stepped down at the Regional Manager for the OIWC in the Bay Area. I am so proud of my work at the OIWC and what I was able to accomplish in the Bay Area. This year’s events were at some of the finest organizations in the industry, The Sierra Club, Mountain Hardwear, and BRG Sports.
At each event we had record setting attendance 90 + at each event, compared to 25 – 40 attendees at prior events. My goals for coming into the position was to make sure that the attendees received some sort of tool that they could use in their career development. Examples being, offering free head shots for your LinkedIn profiles, seminar on “Authentic Networking”, and giving informative sessions on OIWC’s mentoring and pitchfest programs. I am beyond proud of my involvement and the women I have met that are members of the OIWC. I am thankful for the many women that continue to be in the #LadyHawk fan club and I am looking forward to supporting the next wave of up and coming female leaders in the Outdoor, Ski, and Bike industry.
If you’re going through hell, keep going. – Winston Churchill
Everyone has this thought about their life at some point in their life. Mine was this year. At one point, I asked my higher power just to throw me a softball so I can hit it out of the park. That is all I wanted, one life event that was down the middle with a little loft on it. But then the self awareness set in and I have to stop and be thankful. Thankful for my health, family, friends, spirituality, and for coming out of Japan alive. I have this fiery energy that has come out of my experiences from 2015. It’s in the pit of my stomach and radiates like a fire in a wood burning stove. I am NOT here to shrink my ideas and passion, rather here to inspire, grow, and connect with all of you. This will be the first of many Lady Hawk posts, and quoting my favorite band, Pearl Jam – I’m still Alive.
See you in 2016 – LadyHawk