Verde PR and Outdoor Retailer Present Business of the Backcountry Update


Panel discussion at Outdoor Retailer will explore the Outdoor Industry’s backcountry gear and safety standards – follow on Twitter with #OrBizBC & #ORShow


Durango, Colo. (January 14, 2014) – Backcountry use has significantly increased in the last few years, but there is a mixed message with the available gear and a lack of safety measure standards within the industry.

During Outdoor Retailer Winter Market, join an all-star panel of manufacturers, retailers and adventurers who will discuss how the business of the backcountry has changed the landscape of business today. From manufacturing to the sales floor, is the industry responsible and ready for regulation?

Moderated by Kristin Carpenter-Ogden, founder and CEO of Verde Brand Communications and Kenji Haroutunian, Vice President at Emerald Exposition, and OR show director the panel discussion takes place January 24th at Outdoor Retailer Winter Market in Salt Lake City.

The panel includes Black Diamond’s Brand President, Ryan Gellert; Kim Miller, CEO of SCARPA North America; Bruce Tremper, Utah Avalanche Forecaster; Mike Hattrup, Global Director of K2’s Adventure Category; Hud Knight,, Director of Merchandising/GMM Hardgoods & Footwear; and Dave DeSeelhorst, Owner/GM at Solitude Mountain Resort.

Date: January 24th, 2014

Location: New Product Zone, Outdoor Retailer

Time: 10:00 - 11:30 am


“The number of consumers going into the backcountry has significantly increased in the last few years,” said Kristin Carpenter-Ogden, Verde founder and CEO. “Given this increased risk and interest, Emerald Expositions and Verde felt it would be timely to explore the subject in more detail, with a panel of experts who will speak to the various sections of our business – from retailers to manufactures, media and sales reps.”

“Outdoor Retailer Winter Market was formed in 1990 out of a need to focus the market’s energy on issues and innovation relevant to the core activities of Backcountry wintersports on public lands. This panel is an important evolution in the show, delivering value to the industry as it deals with growing pains along with fun, healthy exploration of the winter wilderness. There is a ton of wisdom and experience on this panel, and I’m positive anyone involved in the business of off-piste recreation will want to be there,” said Kenji Haroutunian[KL4] , Vice President at Emerald Exposition, [KH5] and OR show director.

Panelist Biographies:

Ryan Gellert is the President of Black Diamond Equipment, a global leader in the design, manufacture and distribution of technical equipment for climbing, skiing and mountain sports. In this role, he is responsible for Black Diamond’s global product, sales and marketing strategies. Previously, Gellert served as the Managing Director of Black Diamond Equipment Asia in Zhuhai, China from 2005-2010 and as the Vice President of Supply Chain Management in 2011. Gellert is an avid backcountry snowboarder and an active climber for over 15 years, having climbed in Asia, Europe, North America, Australia, the Middle East and South Africa.

Kim Miller is CEO of SCARPA North America, the North American arm of the global SCARPA brand. With more than three decades of experience in the outdoor industry, Miller has worked on all sides of the business – in-house in various management, sales and R+D posts at major outdoor brands, as the founder of independent sales representative agency, and as an outdoor retail shop owner. Miller currently serves on the board of Snowsports Industries America, the member-owned trade association representing the snowsports industry. His love for the industry stems from his passion for the sports. Miller is an accomplished alpinist, climber, skier and all-around outdoorsman.

Bruce Temper has been the Director of the Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center since 1986 and learned the basics of avalanches at the age of 10. After a successful 15-year ski racing career, he did avalanche control at Bridger Bowl Ski Area in Montana, earned a Masters Degree in Geology from Montana State University, studying under the well-known avalanche scientists Dr. John Montagne and Dr. Bob Brown. He then took over as the Director of Avalanche Control at Big Sky Ski Area in Montana and worked as a backcountry avalanche forecaster for the Alaska Avalanche Center. Temper has been featured in a number of national and international television documentaries about avalanches including those produced by National Geographic, Discovery Channel and PBS as well as appearing on a number of national network news programs. Temper wrote the book “Staying Alive in Avalanche Terrain,” published by Mountaineers Books, now in its second edition.

Hud Knight began working in the industry as a teenager in the mid 80’s and has been skiing for 35 years now. He worked at White Pine Touring, which is a specialty outdoor store and guide service in Park City. Knight then shifted gears and worked for Surefoot and now currently works as the Director/GMM of all the HG Divisions at

Mike Hattrup is the Brand Director for the K2 Sports Backside category and has 24 years of sales, marketing and product development experience in the ski and outdoor industries. He is a brand consultant for Outdoor Research and a Ski Mountaineering Guide leading trips in both North America and Europe. Hattrup is a certified AMGA Ski Mountaineering guide and was on the 1987 Mogul U.S. Freestyle Ski Team. He has been recognized by the industry and entered into the 2008 Backcountry Magazine Hall of Fame, 2006 Powder Magazine “48 Most Influential Skiers of our Time,” and the 1998 Powder Magazine “50 Best Skier in North America.”

Dave DeSeelhorst is the Owner and GM at Solitude Mountain Resort. Since 1990, DeSeelhorst has been at the resort and has actively participated in many industry and governmental boards and numerous governmental studies. DeSeelhorts has a BSBA from Northern Arizona University and is a Captain, Aviation, and U.S. Army.

About Verde Brand Communications

Verde Brand Communications is a full-service public relations, digital media, branding, and consulting agency, founded in the outdoor active lifestyle markets. Verde’s clients are in the outdoor, bike, snowsports, health and wellness markets. Visit for more information.

About Emerald Expositions

Emerald Expositions is a leading operator of large business-to-business tradeshows in the United States, producing over 65 tradeshows and conference events per year connecting over 335,000 buyers and sellers across nine diversified end-markets, including general merchandise, sports, hospitality and retail design, jewelry, photography, decorated apparel, building, healthcare and military. Emerald Expositions is headquartered in San Juan Capistrano, California. The company’s shows are typically the most prominent and important for exhibitors and attendees within their various industries. To learn more about Emerald Expositions, please visit

About Outdoor Retailer

Outdoor Retailer (OR) brings together retailers, manufacturers, industry advocates and media to conduct the business of outdoor recreation through tradeshows, product demo events and web-based business solutions. Produced by Emerald Expositions and based in San Juan Capistrano, California, Outdoor Retailer also provides and promotes retailer education, advocacy, responsibility and critical face-to-face business initiatives within the outdoor industry. 

Consistently named among Trade Show News Network’s 25 fastest-growing tradeshows by attendance, Outdoor Retailer ( connects approximately 50,000 attendees on a semi-annual basis for its Summer and Winter Market shows, and thousands more through its year-round online resources and platforms.

Media Contacts:

Kelly Blake

Verde Brand Communications

Kate Lowery

Outdoor Retailer