I grew up outside of Seattle living kind of a double sport’s life. My Dad loves traditional sports, but while raising our family he developed a passion for outdoor sports. So, my sister, brother, and I grew up doing both. I played a sport every season and was involved with school, but then every weekend my Mom and Dad would set up an outdoor adventure. We never played traveling sports and so the weekends were always free. We skied the mashed potatoes of the Cascades, biked all the islands in the northwest, and hiked and fished every lake we could find. Holidays were spent on family outdoor vacations. Self-contained bike tours, backpacking trips, and ski vacations took up most of the time. In high school, I got pretty deep into traditional sports, but I never forgot about getting outside. I spent my last summer at home training for the Seattle to Portland ride (STP). I had always ridden but never to challenge myself physically. It was eye-opening.
I went to college in the Fall at the University of Montana. Missoula fueled my fire to ride bikes, ski, and adventure. I joined the UM Cycling Team and raced for 3 years. I got a part-time job at Adventure Cycling Association. This was one of the best things that have ever happened to me. Adventure Cycling introduced me to the idea that you can be a professional in recreation. I changed my degree path and focused on the Recreation Management Program. I graduated and worked full time with ACA. I was good at having fun and being outside but I hadn’t developed the work ethic needed to really impact a work environment. I started to get involved in volunteering in the Missoula Community with local bike groups. I started to put on events. The Missoula XC and Rolling Thunder were the biggest. Through putting those events on I learned the hard way that the buck stopped with me. Those experiences shaped who I am today and really put in focus my personal and career desires. Around the Fall of 2011 Owen offered to let me help with the Cycling House Store. Owen was a friend and I had followed the progression of TCH closely. Once we talked that first time, I actually knew that this could be a perfect fit. I worked hard to prove myself. It felt really rewarding and I knew that if Owen was willing TCH would be a long term fit.