Mountain Hardwear Named One of Best Places To Work By Outside

Mountain Hardwear was named to Outside magazine’s (www.outsideonline.com) second annual “Best Places to Work” list. Mountain Hardwear was ranked No. 19 out of 30 selected companies.
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Richmond, CA (April 9, 2009) – Mountain Hardwear today was named to Outside magazine's (www.outsideonline.com) second annual “Best Places to Work” list. Mountain Hardwear was ranked No. 19 out of 30 selected companies. The full list and related story will be published in the May issue of Outside magazine, available on newsstands April 14, 2009.

Mountain Hardwear, a leading manufacturer of outdoor equipment and apparel, is honored to be among the few to receive this great distinction. "Mountain Hardwear's commitment to making top-end products has employees getting outside and testing gear in real mountains," say Outside Magazine executive editor Michael Roberts. "Plus, their solar-powered headquarters in Richmond has loaner bikes so the staff can roll to lunch spots and it will soon offer a kayak launch into the San Francisco Bay. It's an ideal environment for balancing hard work with a fun, active lifestyle."

“I think we have to give Mike Wallenfels a lot of credit. Many companies may try to mandate a company culture, but if the top of the pyramid isn't participating, it's meaningless – employees are hesitant. But Mike is leading by example. He's the cornerstone to the culture here. Some days he has his dogs in his office and he's almost always up for a lunchtime mountain bike ride,” says Ted Ganio, Director of Merchandising.

Outside's “Best Places to Work” list was compiled with the help of the Outdoor Industry Association (outdoorindustry.org) and Best Companies Group (bestcompaniesgroup.com). The year-long selection process began with an outreach effort that identified a wide range of non-profit and for-profit organizations with at least 15 employees working in the United States. Participating companies were then sent confidential employee-satisfaction surveys and employer-questionnaires to collect information about benefits, compensation, policies, job satisfaction, environmental initiatives, and community outreach programs. All of the results were analyzed by Best Companies Group experts, who selected the 30 companies that best enable employees to balance productivity with an active, eco-conscious lifestyle.

“These 30 companies share a common belief: that the secret to success in any economy is empowering employees to live balanced lives and remain committed to their communities and the environment,” said Michael Roberts, Executive Editor of Outside. “Our winners know that happy workers are good for the bottom line. So even in the current financial storm, they're offering on-site fitness classes and massage, reimbursements for gym memberships and ski passes, flexible hours, amazing travel benefits, and opportunities for on-the-clock community service.”

ABOUT MOUNTAIN HARDWEAR
Mountain Hardwear makes cutting-edge mountaineering and outdoor equipment, apparel and accessories for the most extreme conditions. Mountain Hardwear was established in 1993 by a group of outdoor industry veterans and is based in Richmond, Calif. The company distributes its products through specialty outdoor and sporting goods retailers in the United States and over 40 countries worldwide. Mountain Hardwear has won numerous product and customer service awards since its inception, reflecting the company's commitment and passion toward innovation. It is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Columbia Sportswear Company. For more information about Mountain Hardwear, visit the company's Internet home page at: www.mountainhardwear.com.

ABOUT OUTSIDE MAGAZINE
Outside is America's leading active lifestyle magazine, with over two million readers a month. For more than 30 years, the magazine has covered travel, sports, adventure, health, and fitness, as well as the personalities, the environment, and the style and culture of the world Outside. Along with receiving many other accolades, Outside is the only magazine to win three consecutive National Magazine Awards for General Excellence. Visit the magazine online at www.outsideonline.com.

ABOUT BEST COMPANIES GROUP
Best Companies Group was formed in January of 2004, with the purpose of identifying and recognizing best companies around the country. By using state-of-the art survey and indexing tools, BCG has been able to achieve that purpose on national, state-wide, city, and industry stages. BCG will partner with B-to-B and consumer media and other business or human resource organizations to publicize the opportunity, encourage participation and to recognize those who are good enough to make the lists of “Best Places to Work”. BCG currently manages 25 similar programs around the US and in Canada. For more information and a complete list of “Best Employer” programs, visit www.bestcompaniesgroup.com Best Companies Group is headquartered in Harrisburg, PA.

ABOUT THE OUTDOOR INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION
Founded in 1989, Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) is the premier trade association for companies in the active outdoor recreation business. OIA provides trade services for over 4000 manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, sales representatives and retailers in the outdoor industry. Outdoor Industry Association seeks to ensure a healthy and diverse specialty retail and supply chain based on quality, innovation and service. To this end, OIA works diligently to raise the standards of the industry; increase participation in outdoor recreation to strengthen business markets; provide support services to improve member profitability; represent member interests in the legislative/regulatory process; promote professional training and education; support innovation; and offer cost-saving member benefits.

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