MEET THE PEOPLE

Thin Air delivers speakers and panelists with proven backgrounds in leading change and driving performance across a wide mix of industries. Also, they’re big on being open and honest about sharing stories of success and failure. Adding in the fact that Event Conference Partners and select attendees are encouraged to join on-stage, means new ideas and connections actually do come out of Thin Air.

Speaker submissions for Thin Air 2017 are now closed. But, we are always open to showcasing interesting and innovative leaders for Thin Air 2018 (April 4-6, 2018), so please contact us if you or anyone from your partnering Event Conference is interested in sharing the stage in 2018.

Featured Participants

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Dave
Pottruck
Educator, Author, Executive
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Chris
Fischer
Founder of Ocearch
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Marc
Harrison
President & CEO of Intermountain Healthcare
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Michelle
MacLaren
Producer and Director
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Jim
Quigley
Hess Corporation, Wells Fargo, Merrimack
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Hannah
Kearney
Retired Olympic Mogul Skier
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Edd
Wilder-James
VP of Technology Strategy at Silicon Valley Data Science
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Hoby
Darling
President and CEO, Advisor, Board Member
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Laura
Kaiser
Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Intermountain Healthcare
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Shea
Jensen
VP of Customer Experience for Nordstrom
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Jeremy
Hanks
Founder & CEO at Dsco
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Andy
Walshe
Red Bull Stratos High Performance Director
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Anita
Grantham
Chief People Officer at Pluralsight
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Shanna
Tellerman
Co-founder & CEO, Modsy
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Davis
Smith
Founder & CEO of Cotopaxi
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George
Severence
Navy SEAL
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Lincoln
Nadauld
Executive Director of Precision Medicine and Precision Genomics at Intermountain Healthcare
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Darwin
Lui
Executive Producer at Paypal
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Lonnie
Mayne
President at inMoment
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Heather
Zynczak
Chief Marketing Officer at Pluralsight
ERIK SNYDER - FORMER CEO OF ARMADA SKIS

Erik Snyder's love of skiing brought him to Armada Skis as CEO in 2009. Armada is the North America's largest privately held ski company and the reference for modern skiing and mountain lifestyle; Armada designs, develops, markets, and sells skis, outerwear, and apparel in over 40 countries. Prior to Armada, Erik received his MBA from Harvard Business School (HBS) where he was a recipient of the Rock Entrepreneurial Fellowship. Before HBS, Erik worked at Partners Capital Investment Group managing a multi-asset class hedge fund and overseeing private equity investments. Erik's corporate career began with PRTM Management Consultants after graduating from Cornell University with Honors.

Erik's background is as diverse as his passions. He has been involved in a number of successful entrepreneurial enterprises, worked for a non-profit in Nepal, was a climbing guide in Mexico, and played professional soccer in Bolivia. Outside of work, Erik spends his time being as active as possible with his wife, Julie, and two boys, Jake (6) and Nate (3). You might find him running through the mountains preparing for an ultra-marathon or skiing in a remote part of the world. Regardless of the adventure, Erik always enjoys coming home to Park City for Sunday brunch with his family.

BOB WHEATON - PRESIDENT & GENERAL MANAGER OF DEER VALLEY RESORT

Bob Wheaton brings over 45 years of ski industry expertise to his position as president and general manager of Deer Valley Resort, Park City, Utah.  Wheaton joined Deer Valley in 1981 and has held a variety of positions with the resort, being appointed general manager in 1988, vice-president of operations in 1989 and president in 1997.

In addition to his responsibilities at the Resort, Wheaton is very active in community organizations, including being a past member and president of the Board of Directors for the Park City Chamber and Visitor’s Bureau, as well as president of the Intermountain Ski Areas Association Board of Directors.  He is currently a member of the Executive Committee and president of the Utah Ski Association and has served on the Board of Governors for the Salt Lake Area Chamber of Commerce and the Utah Symphony and Opera.  Bob received the Outstanding Contribution Award from the Intermountain Ski Areas Association and was awarded Park City Rotary Club’s Professional Citizen of the Year.  In 2011, Bob was inducted into the Utah Tourism Hall of Fame. As Deer Valley was a venue site for the 2002 Winter Olympic Games, he worked closely with the Salt Lake Organizing Committee to ensure all facets of the events were carried out with the highest standards. Wheaton now serves on the Olympic Legacy Board.

Originally from Michigan, Wheaton is a graduate of Macomb College and has been a certified ski instructor since 1976.  He currently resides just outside of Park City in Woodland with his wife Marion.  His son Cody recently retired from the United States Army as a Captain in the 75th Ranger Battalion and his daughter Emily is currently in the U.S. Air Force playing in the Air Force Band and stationed at Yokota Air Base just North of Tokyo.  His favorite activities include skiing, fly fishing, horseback riding, and camping.

BILL SANDS - SPORTS TECHNOLOGIST AT USSA

Dr. William A. Sands is currently a Sport Technologist at the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association. Dr. Sands is a former professor at East Tennessee State University. He recently served as the Director of Education for the National Strength and Conditioning Association in Colorado Springs, CO. He has served as the Director of the Monfort Family Human Performance Research Laboratory at Colorado Mesa University. At the U.S. Olympic Committee in Colorado Springs, he was

At the U.S. Olympic Committee in Colorado Springs, he was Recovery Center Leader, Head of Sport Biomechanics, and Engineering and Senior Physiologist. He has nearly 50 years of experience in Olympic sports. Dr. Sands has served as an associate professor at the University of Utah’s Department of Exercise and Sport Science and Co-Director of the Motor Behavior Research Laboratory with adjunct appointments in Bioengineering and Physical Therapy.

He was the Department Chair of Exercise Science & Sports Medicine at California Lutheran University and Director of the Human Performance Laboratory. Other positions include: Director of Research and Development for USA Gymnastics, Scientific Commission of the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG), and Chair of the United States Elite Coaches Association for Women’s Gymnastics. He has written 11 books, received over $¼ million in grants and contracts, published over 300 articles on sport performance, and received 35 professional awards. He is a Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine, was certified as an Athlete Recovery Specialist, Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), Wilderness EMT, and has several certifications in emergency communications, emergency medicine, and search and rescue. Dr. Sands is a former All- American, MVP, Co-Captain, and NAIA Gymnast of the Year. He was also a World Championship coach in gymnastics and produced several Olympians, more than a dozen national team members, and several World Championship Team members. His primary service and research interests involve athlete recovery, high-performance training, strength and power performance.

AARON FORTH - CHIEF PRODUCT OFFICER AT STRAVA

Aaron is an experienced Internet executive that has a track record of success in both start-ups and established companies. His passion is building great products that change people’s lives. Over his 15 years in the software he has lead many functions (Product, Marketing, Engineering, Business Development and Customer Service), he has worked with multiple business models (enterprise, marketplace & advertising) across different industries. He has lead startups to successful exits and operated large business units in even larger companies.

After graduating from the University of California at Berkeley, Aaron joined at Kana Communications, a CRM start-up. Aaron held the title of Product Manager but did many jobs. Everything from selling, implementing, supporting and managing the evolution of Kana's products gave Aaron a deep understanding of how Kana's clients (companies like eBay and Ford) used CRM to manage their businesses. In his time Kana grew from twenty employees to over one thousand and in 1999 went public.

After Kana Aaron joined another startup, Half.com. Half.com, a Philadelphia based person-to-person marketplace, was acquired by eBay Inc. in 2002. Over 5+ years Aaron held several leadership positions at Half / eBay Inc. with responsible for Product strategy, Design and Product Development.

In 2007 Aaron left eBay Inc. to become VP of Product at Mint.com. Aaron was responsible for Product Management, Design, Customer Service and Analytics. When he joined, Mint.com was pre-launch but soon won TechCrunch 40. Over the next two years Mint.com grew dramatically, inspiring Intuit Inc. to acquire the company in 2009. Aaron stayed on with Intuit through July 2012, serving for the last year as Vice President & General Manager of Personal Finance. As GM he oversaw Product, Engineering, Marketing and Business Development across Quicken and Mint.com.

JEREMY KOENIG - FOUNDER OF ATHLETIGEN

Dr. Jeremy Koenig was a national caliber varsity track athlete while simultaneously completing his PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Following graduate school, Dr. Koenig pursued Postdoctoral training in genetics at Cornell University. He was a Professor of Nutrigenomics before moving to the biomedical industry focussing on genomics-based health solutions. Throughout his formal training and athletic endeavors, Dr. Koenig worked as a high-performance coach to some the world's top athletes. He founded Athletigen in 2013 in an effort to combine his passion for sport performance with his formal training in genetics. Accordingly, Athletigen's product offering was discovered through extensive collaboration with the world's top performing athletes and the health experts who coach them. Since its inception, Athletigen has been committed to involving the athlete community in the genesis of a game-changing DNA-based training and discovery tool designed to push the artificial boundaries of human performance.

REED GALEN - OWNER AT JEDBURGHS

A veteran public affairs and political professional with more than 20 years’ experience, Reed has been involved in politics, government and business at the highest levels. Since 2011, Galen has been the owner of Jedburghs, LLC – a full-service public affairs, public relations and political consultancy that focuses on providing boutique service to its clients.

Galen has spent the last eight years servicing major corporate clients and political campaigns, advising Fortune 50, 100 and 1000 companies in need of high-level counsel in the fields of strategic communications, procurement and legislation. In addition to his private sector work, Reed has managed several high-profile ballot measure campaigns in California, Texas and Colorado – directing all aspects of message development and voter contact.

Before moving to the private sector, Reed served as Deputy Campaign Manager for John McCain’s presidential campaign and Deputy Campaign Manager for Arnold Schwarzenegger’s successful 2006 re-election campaign.

Prior to his move to California, Galen worked on both the 2000 and 2004 campaigns of President George W. Bush’s. Between campaigns, Galen spent a year at the White House and served the Bush Administration at both the US Department of the Treasury and the Department of Homeland Security.Since 2015, Reed began writing a weekly column on the 2016 presidential race, the American

Since 2015, Reed began writing a weekly column on the 2016 presidential race, the American Singularity. Drawing on his long experience and excellent connections with top-tier campaigns, Galen keeps his readers up to date with the latest insights from his contacts in politics and the media and enjoys a readership of top tier reporters and operatives.In January 2017, he released his first book, compilation of essays from the presidential

In January 2017, he released his first book, compilation of essays from the presidential campaign: The American Singularity – A Guided Tour of Campaign 2016.Reed has had his work published in such outlets as The Orange County Register,

Reed has had his work published in such outlets as The Orange County Register, RealClearPolitics and Politico and is regularly an expert voice on California and national politics and is regularly featured on the NBC Nightly News, National Public Radio and in outlets such as The Washington Post, The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times.Reed attended the University of Texas at Austin. He lives in Park City, Utah with his wife

Reed attended the University of Texas at Austin. He lives in Park City, Utah with his wife Lindsay, and their daughters, Dylan and Tessa.

BRINT MARKLE - CO-FOUNDER & CEO OF MOUNTAIN HUB

Brint Markle is the Co-Founder and CEO of Mountain Hub.  Mountain Hub is the first social and information network for the outdoors, a "Waze for the outdoors".  Mountain Hub's mission is to inspire safe exploration and a culture of contribution in the outdoors and is used across 50 countries around the world.  Prior to Mountain Hub, Brint completed his MBA at MIT Sloan where he was an Anderson Fellow.  Before MIT, Brint worked at Bain & Company across the US and Europe on a variety of consulting, private equity, and non-profit projects.  Brint also formerly founded Rival Magazine, the first intercollegiate publication between Duke & UNC.  Brint is an avid outdoorsman and ski mountaineer with extensive experience spanning the Himalaya, Switzerland, Canada, South America and the US.  He is Level III certified by the American Avalanche Institute and graduated cum laude from Duke University where he studied Public Policy & Economics.

SHAUN RITCHIE - CEO & CO-FOUNDER OF TEEM

Shaun Ritchie is co-founder and CEO of Teem Technologies Inc., the creator of tools that dramatically improve the productivity, efficiency and happiness of organizations by providing the platform to optimize how people, places, and technology work together. Teems initial product, EventBoard has been adopted by 2000 companies worldwide and has become the standard for meeting room management.

BRUCE KASANOFF - GHOSTWRITER
Bruce Kasanoff is a social media ghostwriter who pens business and technology articles for leading executives and entrepreneurs. His strength is simplifying complex topics and making them engaging.

He is also a LinkedIn Influencer - with over half a million followers - who focuses on personal development and bringing out talent in others. 

Bruce is the author of How to Self-Promote without Being a Jerk, which shows people who hate to self-promote how to do it anyway.

JON JESSUP - FOUNDER & CEO/CTO AT CLOUDCONVERSION

With over 12 years of on-demand software experience, including 6 years working in the eCommerce space and 4 1/2 years working on the Oracle eBusiness Suite, Jon is able to combine large company experience to help drive the success of an innovative new company dedicated to revolutionizing cloud computing for online retailers.

DON MACDONALD - CMO AT MX.COM

For financial institutions that want to become true advocates for their account holders, MX developed a revolutionary category of data-driven money management that combines a world-class user experience with the power of analytics.

GEORGE SEVERANCE - US NAVY SEALS (RETIRED)
ERIC MILLER - FOUNDER & CEO OF AVI-ON LABS

Eric Miller is co-founder and CEO of Avi-on Labs and CEO of SCVsoft.

Avi-on is a turnkey lighting and home controls platform that makes smart lighting easy to install, easy to change, and easy to life with. Avi-on provides residential and commercial solutions in partnership with major lighting companies to retail and professional markets.

SCVsoft is a software development firm that creates leading edge mobile, server, and analytic software for the energy, big data analytics, and internet of things markets.

Eric is an entrepreneur and leader in the energy efficiency, home and commercial energy control area for over 25 years. Eric has held a number of senior management positions with leading companies including Trilliant, Mohr Davidow Ventures, Itron, Silicon Energy, Foresight Energy, Kenetech, and AES.

Mr. Miller has testified before the U.S. Congress, California Legislature, and Public Utility Commissions Nationwide. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Physics from Colorado College and a Master in Engineering from Dartmouth College, Thayer School of Engineering.

KURT NICOLL - VP OF GLOBAL TOURING AT NITRO CIRCUS

Kurt Nicoll is a former professional motocross racer from England. Nicoll was one of the top riders in the Motocross Grand Prix World Championships during the late 1980s and 1990s, finishing as the runner up four times in the F.I.M. 500cc World Championships. Nicoll was a member of the victorious British 1994 Motocross des Nations team. In 2004 and 2009 Nicoll won the AMA Supermoto Championship, and also multiple World Vet Championships in Motocross and Endurocross in the past 5 years.

Previous to his current role at Nitro Circus, Nicoll was the Chief Operating Officer of Godfrey Entertainment, and a key player in securing the global distribution rights agreement with Universal for the Nitro Circus 3D Movie. Prior to working on the Nitro Circus brand he was the Global Director of Racing for KTM Sportmotorcycle AG.

Nicoll currently leads the team routing all Nitro Circus Live tours around the World and oversees the negotiation of deals with international promoter partners and buyers of the show. He was instrumental in bringing the highly acclaimed Nitro World Games to Salt Lake City in 2016.

STEVE MESLER - CO-FOUNDER, PRESIDENT, AND CEO OF CLASSROOM CHAMPIONS

Steve Mesler is the co-founder, President, and CEO of Classroom Champions, an international award-winning education and mentorship organization. A three-time American Olympian, Steve led his team to gold at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympic Games in 4-man bobsleigh. This was the U.S.’s first gold medal in the event in 62 years. Steve is now a member of the Board of Directors of the United States Olympic Committee.

Under Steve’s vision and leadership, Classroom Champions has grown from Steve being the only athlete involved in the pilot, working with 200 students, to now more than 80 Olympians and Paralympians who have mentored more than 17,000 students across the U.S., Canada, Grenada, St. Lucia, Dominica, and Costa Rica in less than five years.

Steve was formerly a leadership development and employee engagement consultant supporting companies with assets over a billions dollars on improving productivity and performance in Western Canada and the U.S. As a finalist for the International Champion for Peace award, Steve was also named one of Sports Illustrated's “Athletes Who Care”.

PARKER KUNCL - MARKETPLACE DESIGN AT UBER

Parker Kuncl is an award winning product designer. He has led teams within some of the most respected design studios world-wide at Samsung, PayPal, and T-Mobile. Now at Uber, Parker visually demonstrates the value that Uber creates for their riders and drivers.

Over the course of his career, he has observed the need to communicate the value of a design quickly to gain buy-in, but also, to gain rapid feedback as part of an iterative process. Pushing the iteration cycle faster has led him to develop wizard-of-oz prototyping skills which revolutionize the discovery phase of projects.

In his rapid prototyping workshops, he replaces the paper prototype with a toolbox that turns every team member into an effective product manager, designer, and builder. His quick interactive models and wizard-of-oz techniques capitalize on nascent technology, embedded sensors, and more productive ways to share visionary concepts.

MIKE KREADEN - EXECUTIVE-IN-RESIDENCE AT THE INCUBATOR AT SALESFORCE

Mike Kreaden has helped hundreds of startups get to market during his 15 years at Salesforce. Mike was one of the original product managers at Salesforce, where he helped manage the first public API and the first platform brand (Sforce).  He conceived of and developed the first Salesforce business app marketplace (On Demand Marketplace), and then helped to seed the AppExchange with its initial apps by forming the technical evangelist team. He went on to serve as the Managing Director of the AppExchange Incubator from 2006–2008, and is currently managing The Incubator at Salesforce, as its Executive-in-Residence. Mike got his startup mojo going in 1987, as the co-founder of Honeybee Software, a Canadian business software company that successfully IPO’d in 1998. He earned a Bachelor of Engineering, in Mechanical Engineering from McGill University.

S.J. CAMARATA - DIRECTOR AT ESRI

S.J. Camarata is a director of ESRI. He focuses on the company’s global corporate strategies. He also currently serves on a number of boards—both for profit and nonprofit organizations—and has held a number of other board seats over the years. He has been a founder and co-founder of several companies in the GIS, technology, and mobile medical industries. He holds a B.S. degree from the University of Utah and an M.L.A. degree from Utah State University.

KAREY BARKER - MANAGING DIRECTOR OF CROSS CREEK ADVISORS

Karey first developed the concept for Cross Creek in 2004 while managing Wasatch Advisors' Small Cap Ultra Growth portfolios. As a public equity money manager, she saw a need to develop expertise in the private equity markets to better understand emerging themes and competition.  She formed the Cross Creek group inside of Wasatch Advisors in 2006 and managed the Cross Creek team inside of Wasatch Advisors until 2012.  In 2013, Cross Creek became a separate entity from Wasatch.  

Prior to Cross Creek, Karey was a portfolio manager for Wasatch Small Cap Ultra Growth portfolios for nearly 16 years.  She joined Wasatch Advisors in 1989 and served in a variety of roles including as a member of the Wasatch Advisors Board of Directors from 1995 through 2012.

DAVID WIENER - DAVID WIENER VENTURES

The driving force behind David Wiener Ventures is David Wiener, whose design and entrepreneurial talents have been recognized worldwide in international newspapers, magazines, design books and television shows, including a PBS-TV documentary about his work with high-performance vehicles. Mr. Wiener holds over a dozen technology patents and is the recipient of both business and design awards.

From human powered vehicles to aircraft design, David Wiener has been a part of numerous intriguing and highly publicized projects throughout his life. From the age of 15, when he became a professional photographer covering sports and entertainment events to today, as the leader of design innovation studio, DWV, and founder of SoundTube Entertainment,

David Wiener has pushed the boundaries of design, business and product innovation. David Wiener Ventures specializes in the design and development of products, fashions, vehicles, furnishings and entertainment systems. DWV creates exclusive designs, which are preemptive in both form and function, and can be manufactured and marketed profitably.

DWV develops complete, integrated programs to bring products to market, via DWV design, production, marketing, product positioning, corporate identity as well as all necessary development and production of supporting collateral and sales training and execution.

David Wiener Ventures' ability to successfully create exciting products and their requisite graphics and packaging for many industries is based on an active involvement in numerous activities, and underscores DWV's extraordinary versatility in creating usable and unique products. From Olympic skiwear to consumer electronics, DWV has placed no borders on the possibilities of innovation, invention and design. In addition to developing its own products, DWV’s advice and services have been commissioned by such recognized firms as Adidas, AMF, Ben & Jerry's, Campagnolo, Cannondale, Celanese, CCM, DuPont, Ferrari, Fischer, Flying Tigers, Ganassi IndyCar, GAP, Hollywood, Nike, Old Navy, Premier Resorts, Revo, Salomon, U.S. Ski Team, Vans and Vuarnet.

JERRY ROPELATO - FOUNDER & CEO OF WHITECLOUDS

Jerry Ropelato is founder and CEO of WhiteClouds, a cloud-based 3D Printing company.  Mr. Ropelato has over 30 years of technology and internet media experience. Prior to founding WhiteClouds, Mr. Ropelato served as the Founder and CEO of Purch, an Internet Technology Media Company.  He has been involved with 14 company acquisitions and has founded 8 startups.