USSA

USSA Honors Athletes And Leaders

by
USSA
2015-05-17 12:33
 

PARK CITY, UT (May 16, 2015) – The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA) recognized accomplished athletes and leaders on Friday at the annual Chairman’s Awards Dinner during USSA Congress. Olympic and World Championship gold medal winning moguls skier Hannah Kearney (Norwich, VT) was honored by the USSA with the Beck International Award, which is awarded to the top USSA athlete in international competition. Kearney, who retired after the 2014-15 season, solidified her position as one of the best moguls skiers in U.S. history, winning a total of 46 World Cups over the course of her career and bringing home both the moguls and overall freestyle titles in her final season.


Thelma Hoessier accepts the Julius Blegen Award on behalf of Allen Church.

Among other awards, Allen Church (Albuquerque, NM), one of the world’s most knowledgeable experts in race timing and has been responsible for training thousands of others, received this year’s Julius Blegen Award for over 45 years of service to the USSA. Park City Nordic Ski Club was named Club of the Year. U.S. Freestyle Ski Team coach Matt Saunders (Park City, UT), who helped lead the aerials team to be Best in the World this season, was named Coach of the Year.


USSA Chairman Dexter Paine, Vail Valley Foundation's Ceil Folz and USSA President and CEO Tiger Shaw celebrate a successful 2015 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships.

Vail Valley Foundation President and CEO Ceil Folz (Vail, CO), cross country athlete Kikkan Randall (Anchorage, AK) and the late Deedee Corradini (Salt Lake City, UT) were also recognized for their service to the sports. Folz was the key leader behind the successful 2015 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in Vail/Beaver Creek, CO and was presented the Bud and Mary Little Award for service to the International Ski Federation (FIS). Randall has been a pioneer in her sport while also empowering young women through positive experiences in sports through Fast and Female (add link). She was presented with the Russell Wilder Award for contribution to youth. Corradini, who passed away in March, mentored the young pioneers of women’s ski jumping to follow their dreams of inclusion in the Olympic Winter Games. She received the USSA’s John Clair Award for service to the U.S. Ski Team.

 

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Moguls champion Hannah Kearney was honored by the USSA with the Beck International Award, which is awarded to the top USSA athlete in international competition.
  • Long-time USSA race official Allen Church was awarded the Julius Blegen Award for his volunteer work with race timing.
  • Park City Nordic Ski Club was named Club of the Year.
  • U.S. Freestyle Ski Team aerials coach Matt Saunders was named Coach of the Year. His athletes won three of four major awards this year on the FIS World Cup circuit, including both men’s and women’s overall aerials titles.
  • Richie Date received the Westhaven Award for his service as a FIS Technical Delegate.
  • Burke Mountain Academy’s Steve Burlack was honored as USSA Development Coach of the Year.
  • Ceil Folz, Deedee Corradini and cross country athlete Kikkan Randall were also recognized for their service.
  • Photos from the evening can be found in USSA's photo catalog.

 

2015 U.S. SKI AND SNOWBOARD ASSOCATION AWARDS

USSA Diamond Award
Julius Blegen Award (Highest honor for service to sport) – Allen Church (Albuquerque, NM)

USSA Gold Awards
Beck International Award (top USSA athlete) – Hannah Kearney (Norwich, VT)
USSA Coach of the Year Award – Matt Saunders (Park City, UT)
USSA Development Coach of the Year Award – Steve Berlack (Franconia, NH/Burke Mountain Academy)
USSA Club of the Year Award – Park City Nordic Ski Club
Westhaven Award (top USSA technical delegate) – Ritchie Date (Park City, UT)

USSA Silver Awards
Paul Bacon Award (event organization) – Beat Hupfer/Mammoth Mountain Race Department
John J. Clair Jr. Award (service to the U.S. Ski Team) – Deedee Corradini (Salt Lake City, UT)
Bud and Mary Little Award (service to FIS/USOC) – Ceil Folz (Vail, CO)
Buddy Werner Award (athlete sportsmanship, leadership) – Faye Gulini (Salt Lake City, UT)
Russell Wilder Award (service to youth) – Kikkan Randall/Fast and Female (Anchorage, AK)
USSA J. Leland Sosman Award (service as team physician) – Dr. Andrew Cooper (Salt Lake City, UT)
West Family Award (USSA official) – Chuck Hughes (Killington, VT)

USSA Athlete of the Year Awards
Adaptive Athlete of the Year Award – Andy Soule (San Antonio, TX)
Alpine Athlete of the Year Award – Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO)
Cross Country Athlete of the Year Award – Liz Stephen (East Montpelier, VT)
Freestyle Athlete of the Year Award – Hannah Kearney (Norwich, VT)
Freeskiing Athlete of the Year Award – David Wise (Reno, NV)
Nordic Combined Athlete of the Year Award - Bryan Fletcher (Steamboat Springs, CO)
Ski Jumping Athlete of the Year Award – Sarah Hendrickson (Park City, UT)
Snowboarding Athlete of the Year Award – Kelly Clark (West Dover, VT)

USSA Coach of the Year Awards
Adaptive International Coach of the Year Award – Eileen Carey (Burlington, VT/U.S. Paralympic Team)
Adaptive Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Scott Olson (Winter Park, CO/Disabled Sports USA)
Alpine International Coach of the Year Award – Forest Carey (Park City, UT/U.S. Ski Team)
Alpine Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Steve Berlack (Franconia, NH/Burke Mountain Academy)
Cross Country International Coach of the Year Award – Jason Cork (North Pole, AK) and Matt Whitcomb (Worthington, MA)
Cross Country Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Sverre Caldwell (Stratton Mountain, VT)
Freestyle International Coach of the Year Award – Matt Saunders (Park City, UT/U.S. Freestyle Ski Team)
Freestyle Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Johnny Kroetz (Rochester, NY/Bristol Mountain)
U.S. Freeskiing International Coach of the Year Award – Skogen Sprang (Park City, UT/U.S. Freeskiing)
U.S. Freeskiing Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Chris “Hatch” Haslock (Park City, UT/Team Park City United)
Ski Jumping/Nordic Combined International Coach of the Year Award – Dave Jarrett (Heber City, UT/U.S. Ski Team)
Ski Jumping/Nordic Combined Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Scott Smith (Cary, IL/Norge Ski Club)
Snowboarding International Coach of the Year Award – Rick Bower (Park City, UT/U.S. Snowboarding)
Snowboarding Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Ross Powers (Stratton Mountain, VT/Stratton Mountain School

USSA Club of the Year Awards
Adaptive Club of the Year Award – Adaptive Action Sports
Alpine Club of the Year Award – Ski & Snowboard Club Vail
Cross Country Club of the Year Award – Craftsbury Nordic Ski Club
Freestyle Club of the Year Award – Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club
Freeskiing Club of the Year Award – Team Park City United
Jumping/Nordic Combined Club of the Year Award – Park City Nordic Ski Club
Snowboarding Club of the Year Award – Team Park City United

 

USSA GOLD AWARDS

Julius Blegen Award – Allen Church (Albuquerque, NM)
Presented for outstanding service to the sport.
Allen Church has been involved as a USSA volunteer for 45 years. He has served from his home club in Taos, NM as well as throughout the Rockies and around the world. With a primary focus on race timing, he became one of the world’s most knowledgeable experts and has been responsible for training thousands of others. Church served as an alpine technical delegate from 1978 to 1995. In his career he has worked at the highest levels of sport, including World Cup, World Championships and Olympics. He is a past recipient of some of USSA’s highest honors for officials, including the Westhaven and Bud and Mary Little Award.

Beck International Award – Hannah Kearney (Norwich, VT)
Presented to the top USSA athlete in international competition.
In her final year as a world-class athlete, Hannah Kearney went down to the wire—matching the all-time record of 46 World Cup wins in her final event as an international athlete. She tied fellow American Donna Weinbrecht – a past Beck Award recipient herself – to etch her name into the record books. In her final World Championships, she won gold and silver, giving her a new sport record of eight World Championship medals. She capped it off winning both the overall and moguls World Cup titles. Kearney retired as not just the greatest female American mogul skier, but the most decorated skier ever in her sport. She is a complete athlete/competitor who is responsible for any fault or weakness and seeks to rid herself of that weakness. Her personal drive and strong character have set an example for an entire generation of freestyle athletes.

USSA Club of the Year – Park City Nordic Ski Club
As part of the Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation, the Park City Nordic Ski Club (PCNSC) is a resource for multi-sport entry programming as well as providing a World Cup and international venue for competitions and training in ski jumping and nordic combined. PCNSC has made significant strides this year to support the nation in all nordic sports. The 2015 season was a good one for PCNSC. The women’s cross country team is ranked second in the country. Club athletes were ranked eighth at junior nationals this season. Ski jumping and nordic combined athletes earned three podium spots across U16 and U18 junior nationals. This season, PCNSC also earned a gold certification in USSA’s Club Development Program. The club has a strong organizational base, an international venue, training and competitions, and programming that serves a wide range of athletes and is coming on strong with results at every level.

USSA International Coach of the Year – Matt Saunders (Park City, UT)
Matt Saunders has been an incredible coaching asset for the U.S. Freestyle Ski Team’s aerials squad. Saunders has been the backbone of the team with a vast knowledge of the technical side of aerials skiing. His consistency has given athletes a sense of confidence in him, and it has shown in their results. Saunders’ experience as a former national team member and his passion and personality has helped his athletes succeed at all levels. The aerials team brought home four major World Cup awards this season: Mac Bohonnon and Kiley McKinnon took home the aerials overall World Cup titles; Alex Bowen was named Rookie of the Year and the team as a whole won the Nations Cup, making them Best in the World. Both McKinnon and Bowen also brought home silver medals from World Championships.

USSA Development Coach of the Year – Steve Berlack (Franconia, NH)
16 years ago, Steve Berlack left his career to follow his passion and become a ski coach. Over the years, has worked in various capacities at Burke Mountain Academy, honing his craft to become an outstanding development coach. He has coached men and women, U16s and FIS-aged athletes, and has served as Burke’s program director. For the past two seasons, Berlack has been an integral member of the FIS men's coaching staff at Burke. This past season, USSA Eastern athletes won the Regions Cup at the U18 National Championship, in large part due to a group of young men Berlack has coached for the past four years.

Westhaven Award – Ritchie Date (Park City, UT)
Presented in recognition of service as a FIS Technical Delegate.
For over 15 years, Ritchie Date has been active in the sports of snowboarding and freeskiing, from his start as a race department manager to his current work as a FIS technical delegate and technical supervisor for the Grand Prix and Revolution Tour events. He has also done an outstanding job of instilling respect of the FIS and USSA rules in the snowboard athletes. Date is just one of two FIS U.S. TDs to be given the opportunity to work in Sochi during the 2014 Winter Olympics.

 

USSA SILVER AWARDS

Paul Bacon Award – Beat Hupfer/Mammoth Mountain Race Department
Presented in recognition of contribution to event organization.
The Mammoth Mountain Race Department, under Beat Hupfer, has hosted U.S. Snowboarding events for over 20 years, starting with the national championships at June Mountain in 1998.  Beat has been a true advocate for the sports of skiing and snowboarding. Mammoth has hosted events for every Olympic cycle, including hosting four of the six qualifying events in 2014. In 2015, Mammoth hosted two Revolution Tour and a Grand Prix event. When other resorts were struggling with snow and couldn’t hold events, Beat stepped up and offered to host. Mammoth also works every year to provide training camps for the U.S. Freeskiing and U.S. Snowboarding Pro Teams. The resort also provides a great opportunity for Project Gold Camps, with over 100 athletes training at Mammoth Mountain for two weeks in May.

John J. Clair Jr. Award – Deedee Corradini (Salt Lake City, UT)
Presented in recognition of service to the U.S. Ski Team and U.S. Snowboarding.
Deedee Corradini was the first female mayor to accept the Olympic flag for a host city in 1998 when Salt Lake City was awarded the 2002 Games. That defining moment foreshadowed the countless volunteer hours and timeless energy she spent throughout 15 years helping women athletes strive for greatness. As President of Women’s Ski Jumping USA, she mentored the young pioneers of the sport to follow their dreams of inclusion in the Olympic Winter Games. Corradini worked closely with USSA and the International Ski Federation to help provide more opportunities for women to participate at the highest levels of sport. Her efforts have helped grow the sport of ski jumping worldwide, including in the U.S. where many clubs have seen a doubling in young female participation.

Bud and Mary Little Award – Ceil Folz (Vail, CO)
Presented in recognition of service to the International Ski Federation or U.S. Olympic Committee.
As leader of the Vail Valley Foundation, Ceil Folz pioneered and produced a remarkable FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in America this past February. She used innovation and experience to blend high-quality ski racing produced by a highly experience on-course team with an American ski festival throughout the Vail Valley. Record crowds of over 200,000 attended races and nightly celebrations showcasing the best of alpine ski racing. Her vision to invest in a superior global broadcast provided the platform for a record 800-million global viewers.

J. Leland Sosman Award – Dr. Andrew Cooper (Salt Lake City, UT)
Presented in recognition of service to the USSA's Physician's Pool.
Andrew Cooper has been a valuable and dependable member of the USSA Physician Pool since 2006 as both a Head Team Physician for U.S. Freeskiing team and a member of the Medical Committee since 2011. He played an integral role in guidance of the medical program as well as planning and attending the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games. He has shown time and time again that he is willing to go the extra mile to give athletes world-class healthcare.

Buddy Werner Award – Faye Gulini (Salt Lake City, UT)
Presented to an outstanding USSA athlete who demonstrated leadership and good sportsmanship.
Snowboarding has been an incredible journey for Faye Gulini, and she wanted to give back as much as snowboarding has given to her. Sharing her passion with orphans and underserved children in Kyrgyzstan was one way of accomplishing that goal. This past February, the Salt Lake City native boarded a plane headed for Bishkek, the capital and largest city in Kyrgyzstan. In four days, she visited the European School in Central Asia, the Kyrgyz Academy of Physical Culture and Sports, and High School #48 to speak of life as a professional female athlete. In return, the 13-17 year olds inspired Gulini with their dedication to making the most of their limited time on the snow.

Russell Wilder Award – Kikkan Randall (Anchorage, AK)
Presented in recognition of contributes to youth.
Cross country skier Kikkan Randall is a pioneer in her sport. The four-time Olympian has racked up a list of firsts, including being the first U.S. woman to win a World Cup event in 2008, first U.S. woman to earn a world championship medal in 2011, first U.S. woman to podium in the overall World Cup sprint standings in 2011 and first U.S. cross country athlete to win World Championship gold in 2013. In addition to being a champion in her sport, the 31 year old is also a champion for female athletes. Randall balances her competitive life by serving as an ambassador for the organization Fast and Female, which started in 2005 as a way to get more girls on skis.

West Family Award – Chuck Hughes (Killington, VT)
Presented in recognition of service as a USSA official.
Chuck Hughes has been a coach, parent, FIS technical delegate, Eastern AO Chairman, Program Director at Killington Mountain School, Vermont Officials Chair and a VARA Board Member. He has dedicated much time to the betterment of alpine skiing. He handles himself with grace and has earned the respect of the national and international community of ski racing.

Team Athletes Giving Back Award – Kelly Clark (West Dover, VT)
In 2010, Kelly Clark started the Kelly Clark Foundation (501c3). Clark has had a very successful snowboard career and she wanted to make sure that she could continue to impact the sport after her days of competing were over. She wants the sport of snowboarding to be better because she was part of it. Clark looked around at the needs and at what her personal experience was like and sought to give opportunity to youth and create access to the sport. This year, the organization gave out over $25,000 to 15 high school students across the U.S.

 

USSA COACHES OF THE YEAR

Adaptive Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Scott Olson (Winter Park, CO)
Scott Olson served as lead coach and mentor at Disabled Sports USA Hartford Ski Spectacular as well at the Disabled Association of Veterans (DAV) Winter Sports Clinic in 2015. He qualified six development athletes to World Championship team in 2015 and coached them at the World Championships.

Adaptive International Coach of the Year Award – Eileen Carey (Burlington, VT)
The 2014-15 season was Carey’s first year as head coach of the U.S. Paralympic Nordic Team. She took athletes from four medals in Sochi to 28 medals in the following season. The team ended the season second in the World Cup standings and had two World Cup overall globe winners. 

Alpine Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Steve Berlack (Franconia, NH)
Steve Berlack has worked in various capacities at Burke Mountain Academy over the past 16 years. He has coached men and women, U16s and FIS-aged athletes, and has served as USSA Program Director. For the past two seasons Berlack has been an integral member of the FIS Men's coaching staff. In 2014-15, the East won the Regions Cup at the U18 National Championship in large part due to a group of athletes Berlack has coached for over three years.

Alpine International Coach of the Year Award – Forest Carey (Park City, UT)
Forest Carey has been leading the multi team (speed/tech) for years now. His athletes' success over the last three years includes five World Championship medals, one bronze Olympic medal and one gold Olympic medal. This year, Carey was able to prepare Bode Miller and Ted Ligety to form for the World Ski Championships in Vail/ Beaver Creek, CO which resulted in gold and bronze medals from Ligety and an incredible performance by Miller despite a very difficult season with injuries leading up to the World Championships.

Cross Country Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Sverre Caldwell (Stratton Mountain, VT)
Stratton Mountain School Nordic Program Director Sverre Caldwell, who has won the domestic coach of the year three times previously, has been an instrumental part of the success of SMS’s nordic program. In the 2014-2015 season, the SMS Nordic Team and SMS T2 Team scored four top-10s at the World Championships—including one silver medal—two top-10s at the U23 World Championships and a sixth-place finish at World Juniors. 14 of his 21 team members qualified for Junior Nationals, and eight of the 14 earned All American status (top-10 or top-three relay). At Junior Nationals, the SMS Nordic Team extended its streak of winning at least one Junior National gold medal for 19 straight years.

Cross Country International Coach of the Year Award – Jason Cork (North Pole, AK) and Matt Whitcomb (Worthington, MA)
The key to the U.S. Cross Country Ski Team’s success this year was teamwork. Head men’s coach Jason Cork and head women’s coach Matt Whitcomb were an integral part of fostering the sense of team that carried the athletes through a season full of highs and lows. With Cork and Whitcomb at the helm, the Team brought home two World Championship medals and skied to two World Cup podiums, with additional strong results on the World Cup and at other major events, including Liz Stephen’s best-ever fifth-place finish at the Tour de Ski.

Freeskiing International Coach of the Year Award – Skogen Sprang (Park City, UT)
Skogen Sprang’s leadership as a U.S. Freeskiing coach continues to help produce Best in the World results. Slopestyle skiing athletes continued their domination this year, never winning less than 50 percent of the podiums available at X Games, Dew Tour and Grand Prix events during the season. Athletes Joss Christensen, McRae Williams and Gus Kenworthy swept the Grand Prix podium in Park City in one of the best finals of the year.

Freeskiing Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Chris Haslock (Park City, UT)
Chris “Hatch” Haslock has been a staple in the sport of freeskiing since it’s inception. Hatch, who runs Team Park City United, has put seven athletes on to the U.S. Freeskiing team over the last three years.  His club continues to dominate regional and national level events. Hatch not only provides excellent coaching, he is also very involved in the governance of the sport as well. Hatch tirelessly helps with the competition guide, providing guidance on the ranking procedures and is actively involved in the Freeskiing Sport Committee. Hatch also sits on the Freeskiing Strategic Working Group, providing feedback to the USSA Board of Directors.

Freestyle Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Johnny Kroetz (Rochester, NY)
Johnny Kroetz has been a freestyle coach for 22 years. He has been an advocate for freestyle skiing and all of its components during this time. Working at Bristol Mountain, he has served as a great representative for eastern freestyle. Four current U.S. Freestyle Ski Team members got their beginnings with Kroetz, including Jonathon Lillis, Dylan Walczyk, Morgan Schild, and Harrison Smith. Kroetz generates a love of the sport from the ground up—building courses and jump sites every weekend for kids to train on in order to advance through the ranks.

Freestyle International Coach of the Year Award – Matt Saunders (Park City, UT)
Matt Saunders has been a coaching asset for the U.S. Freestyle Ski Team’s aerials squad, acting as the backbone of the team with a vast knowledge of the technical side of aerials skiing. His consistency has given athletes a great sense of confidence in him, and it has show in their results. Matt’s experience as a former National Team member and his passion and personality has helped his athletes succeed at all levels.

Jumping/Nordic Combined Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Scott Smith (Cary, IL)
A former U.S. Ski Team jumper, Scott has been a driving force behind the Norge Ski Club outside Chicago. A veteran Olympic and club coach, Smith is presently the club coach for three Norge athletes on the USA Ski Jumping national team.

Jumping/Nordic Combined International Coach of the Year Award – Dave Jarrett (Heber City, UT)
Since stepping into the role of head coach in 2008, Dave Jarrett has played a key roll in deepening and strengthening the U.S. Nordic Combined Ski Team. This season, his athletes Bryan and Taylor Fletcher posted personal-best finishes. Bryan landed fifth at the 2015 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships while Taylor secured a third place podium on the World Cup circuit.

Snowboarding Domestic Coach of the Year Award – Ross Powers (Stratton Mountain, VT)
Ross Powers is currently the Director of Snowboarding at Stratton Mountain School in Vermont. Before Ross’ coaching career, he was a U.S. Snowboarding athlete and a two-time Olympic medalist, including gold in 2002. This year Ross coached a group of SMS female athletes. He promoted building good all around snowboarding. One of his athletes, Madison Barrett, won halfpipe gold at Junior Worlds in China and placed third at the Seven Springs, PA Revolution Tour stop. Another athlete, Kiersten Edwards, placed third at her second snowboardcross Revolution Tour at Ski Cooper, CO. Ross started The Level Field Fund, which supports athletes with financial need. He volunteers for USSA events like Project Gold camps and is also the Eastern Snowboarding Sport Committee Representative.

Snowboarding International Coach of the Year Award – Rick Bower (Park City, UT)
Long-time U.S. Snowboarding halfpipe coach Rick Bower has led the women's program to two medals at the 2010 and 2014 Olympic Winter Games. The women's halfpipe snowboarding team continued at an historic pace in 2014-15, winning 83 percent of the podiums available at the major contests this season. Bower is one of the most respected coaches in the sport for his leadership and technical knowledge.

 

USSA CLUBS OF THE YEAR

Adaptive Club of the Year – Adaptive Action Sports
Adaptive Action Sports is an up-and-coming club program formed by paralympic snowboarding medalist Amy Purdy and former ESPN and X Games organizer Daniel Gale in 2005, with snowboarding as one of its primary focuses. The program is making a key difference for adaptive athletes, in particular disabled veterans. It has been providing pipeline programs for adaptive snowboarders since 2007. Among those thriving in the program is Marine Dustin Fleming, who lost a leg while on a mission to help children in Iraq. Fleming accepted the award on behalf of Adaptive Action Sports.

Alpine Club of the Year – Ski & Snowboard Club Vail
Ski & Snowboard Club Vail (SSCV) completed the gold certification as part of the USSA’s Club Development Program in the first season it was offered, and has been a high-achieving club for many years. During this past year, its athletes have achieved success at all levels of age class, FIS and NorAm competition. Of the 36 Rocky/Central Division athletes to qualify to U16 National Championships, 24 were from SSCV. Five of the 24 U16 athletes who qualified to the NTG in 2014 were from SSCV, more than from any other program in the country. 

Cross Country Club of the Year – Craftsbury Nordic
Craftsbury Nordic has stepped up to host national-level events in each of the last three years. It has hosted U.S. Masters National Championships and two Super Tour weekends of racing with nearly 800 starts on one weekend. In addition to homologated race courses with snowmaking, Craftsbury has now built a 'green' lodge with training facilities, locker rooms and wax rooms. The Craftsbury Green Racing Project is dominating elite racing in New England. CGRP athletes swept the NENSA Gallagher Cup as men's and women's Eastern Cup overall champions. The Craftsbury youth programming has exploded in the last few years.

Freeskiing Club of the Year – Team Park City United
This past season, Park City ski and snowboard clubs came together to form Team Park City United. Together these clubs created a program dedicated to putting athletes first and sharing in the passion for competitive winter sports. The club also hosted the successful Freeskiing Junior Nationals events this spring. Team Park City United athletes had multiple podiums at Junior Worlds, Junior Nationals and USASA Nationals.

Freestyle Club of the Year – Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club
Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club has a long history of supporting freestyle through athlete development and event participation. The club believes it is important to build up the grassroots level and help build up the sport. Three athletes from Steamboat were in the top 10 on this year’s NorAm tour, including NorAm Grand Prix Champion Ryan Dyer. Two athletes, Avital Shimko and Jaelin Kauf, received medals at the 2015 FIS Junior World Championships. Steamboat also played hosted to 2015’s U.S. Freestyle National Championships.

Jumping/Nordic Combined Club of the Year – Park City Nordic Ski Club
As a part of the Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation, Park City Nordic Ski Club (PCNSC) is a resource for multi-sport entry programming as well as providing a World Cup and international venue for competitions and training in ski jumping and nordic combined. PCNSC has the whole package: a strong organizational base, an international venue, training and competitions and programming that serves a wide range of athletes and is coming on strong with results at every level.

Snowboarding Club of the Year – Team Park City United
This past season, Park City ski and snowboard clubs came together to form Team Park City United. Together these clubs created a program dedicated to putting athletes first and sharing in the passion for competitive winter sports. Team Park City United athletes had multiple podiums at Junior Nationals, USASA Nationals and Junior Worlds, including Clara Jenner’s bronze medal in halfpipe snowboarding.
 

USSA ATHLETES OF THE YEAR

Adaptive Athlete of the Year – Andy Soule (San Antonio, TX)
Last season, Andy Soule’s success in cross country skiing was limited and his biathlon success always depended on his impeccable performance in the range, and even then he was infrequently on the podium. The willingness to fail while seeking improvement coupled with patience, determination and hard work brought Soule the performance breakthrough he had been seeking. Of his 10 World Cup and World Championship podium performances this season, eight came in cross country events. He medaled in five of the six World Championship individual races, both biathlon and cross country. Soule outright won four cross country World Cup races this season on his way to winning the overall IPC Cross Country World Cup title.

Alpine Athlete of the Year – Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO)
Lindsey Vonn was able to overcome the mental and physical challenges of coming back from injury. She won eight world cups, earned a bronze medal at the 2015 FIS Alpine Ski World Championships and won a record 17th Audi FIS Alpine World Cup overall globe and record sixth straight downhill title. To top it all off, she brought her Audi FIS Ski World Cup victory total to 67, etching her name into the record books as the winningest women's World Cup racer ever.

Cross Country Athlete of the Year – Liz Stephen (East Montpelier, VT)
Liz Stephen is a powerhouse on the U.S. Cross Country team. This season, she made history with a fifth-place finish at the Tour de Ski, the best result ever by an American in the multi-stage event. She was also part of the relay team that placed fourth at the 2015 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships and scored her first World Cup podium.

Freestyle Athlete of the Year – Hannah Kearney (Norwich, VT)
In her final year as a world-class athlete, Hannah Kearney went down to the wire, matching the all-time record of 46 World Cup wins in her very final event as an international athlete. In her final World Championships, she won gold and bronze giving her a new sport record of eight World Championship medals. And she capped it off winning both the overall and moguls crystal globes. Hannah retired as not just the greatest female American mogul skier, but the most decorated skier ever in her sport.

Freeskiing Athlete of the Year – David Wise (Reno, NV)
David Wise has been on the top of the halfpipe skiing podium since early 2001, including becoming the first-ever Olympic gold medalist in the sport. This past season, Wise had four major event podiums and took home the overall FIS World Cup title. Wise continues to push the progression of the sport. He chooses runs that favor amplitude and difficulty over just a stock run the judges might like.

Nordic Combined Athlete of the Year – Bryan Fletcher (Steamboat Springs, CO)
Bryan Fletcher continued to put up impressive results during the 2014-15 season, most notably a fifth place finish at the 2015 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships. It was a career-best finish for the Steamboat Springs native. Fletcher also had eight top-10 finished on the World Cup circuit.

Ski Jumping Athlete of the Year – Sarah Hendrickson (Park City, UT)
After a tough start to the season, Sarah Hendrickson made a dramatic come back, finishing in the top 10 at the 2015 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships and notching three World Cup podiums in the last events of the season. She was also one of the top performers in the mixed-gender team event, soaring to the longest ride of the day at World Championships.

Snowboarding Athlete of the Year – Kelly Clark (West Dover, VT)
Kelly Clark continues to dominate women’s halfpipe snowboarding while riding with her teammates to push the progression of the sport. This season, she was constantly at the top of the podium, winning two Sprint U.S. Grand Prixs and the overall Grand Prix Title, took her eight Burton U.S. Open win and the TTR halfpipe overall title. Clark also spent the year growing the Kelly Clark Foundation, giving opportunity to youth and creating access to the sport.