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2020 CWA Summit

Conference Sessions

Each year the CWA convenes the industry's top presenters, who are experts in climbing gym ownership, operations, programs, and expansion. Don't miss the opportunity for growth and development with your indoor climbing industry peers!

EXPLORE THE 

Click the session title to review details for each presentation that will be offered at this year's CWA Summit.

KEYNOTE

North Star: Remembering Our Why | Kevin Jorgeson


Description: During the CWA Summit, you have the opportunity to learn from the best in the business. Whatever your role in the indoor climbing industry, this event is full of resources to help you learn and grow. And the timing is perfect! The stakes have never been higher, with increased mainstream awareness, a competitive market, and a forthcoming Olympic debut, there are a lot of reasons to be optimistic and aggressive. For these same reasons, it’s critical to remember our “why.” The sport and lifestyle of climbing are experiencing a period of unprecedented growth, but what is our responsibility to it? Join Kevin Jorgeson as he shares his “why” and helps you uncover yours. Hear personal stories, including Kevin’s introduction to climbing as an 11-year-old boy, his success on the Dawn Wall, and the vision he’s pursuing for the future. Reconnect with your “why” so you can navigate the future with a renewed sense of purpose. About the Presenter: After discovering rock climbing in 1995, Kevin was instantly hooked. At 14, too young to obtain a work permit, Kevin belayed birthday parties in exchange for Snickers bars until he was old enough to be added to the payroll. From there, Kevin went on to become an instructor, youth team coach, front desk staff, head routesetter, and assistant manager. By his early 20’s, Kevin fully committed to his climbing career and began establishing the most beautiful and dangerous highball boulder problems in the world. In 2009, he began work on the Dawn Wall project with Tommy Caldwell. Six years later, they finally succeeded on what is considered the hardest big wall free climb in the world. The ascent earned both Kevin and Tommy the American Alpine Club’s highest distinction: Lifetime Honorary Membership. In addition to his climbing career, Kevin is the co-founder of Session Climbing and Fitness, a 23,000 square foot, ground-up climbing gym being built in downtown Santa Rosa in 2021. He is also the co-founder of the 1Climb Foundation, which has raised over $1.5m to date to help introduce 100,000 kids to climbing by installing climbing walls in Boys and Girls Clubs across the United States.





LEADERSHIP

North Star: Remembering Our Why | Kevin Jorgeson


Description: During the CWA Summit, you have the opportunity to learn from the best in the business. Whatever your role in the indoor climbing industry, this event is full of resources to help you learn and grow. And the timing is perfect! The stakes have never been higher, with increased mainstream awareness, a competitive market, and a forthcoming Olympic debut, there are a lot of reasons to be optimistic and aggressive. For these same reasons, it’s critical to remember our “why.” The sport and lifestyle of climbing are experiencing a period of unprecedented growth, but what is our responsibility to it? Join Kevin Jorgeson as he shares his “why” and helps you uncover yours. Hear personal stories, including Kevin’s introduction to climbing as an 11-year-old boy, his success on the Dawn Wall, and the vision he’s pursuing for the future. Reconnect with your “why” so you can navigate the future with a renewed sense of purpose. About the Presenter: After discovering rock climbing in 1995, Kevin was instantly hooked. At 14, too young to obtain a work permit, Kevin belayed birthday parties in exchange for Snickers bars until he was old enough to be added to the payroll. From there, Kevin went on to become an instructor, youth team coach, front desk staff, head routesetter, and assistant manager. By his early 20’s, Kevin fully committed to his climbing career and began establishing the most beautiful and dangerous highball boulder problems in the world. In 2009, he began work on the Dawn Wall project with Tommy Caldwell. Six years later, they finally succeeded on what is considered the hardest big wall free climb in the world. The ascent earned both Kevin and Tommy the American Alpine Club’s highest distinction: Lifetime Honorary Membership. In addition to his climbing career, Kevin is the co-founder of Session Climbing and Fitness, a 23,000 square foot, ground-up climbing gym being built in downtown Santa Rosa in 2021. He is also the co-founder of the 1Climb Foundation, which has raised over $1.5m to date to help introduce 100,000 kids to climbing by installing climbing walls in Boys and Girls Clubs across the United States.





MANAGEMENT & OPERATIONS

An Update on Economic and Lending Conditions | Matthew Roberts, 5.Life


Description: The economic environment continues to evolve in unexpected ways. In this session, we will review the current economy as it relates to the fitness industry, including wages, costs, and income trends, and recent and looming interest rate changes. Using this as our foundation, we will discuss the impact that the current situation and the near future will have on lending decisions made by banks. About the Presenter: Matt Roberts is the President of 5.Life, a collection of rock-climbing gyms in Ohio and Pennsylvania, as well as the owner of The Kernmantle Group, an agricultural risk management consulting firm. Dr. Roberts became a partner in 5.Life in 2013, while an Agricultural Economics Professor at The Ohio State University. In 2017 Dr. Roberts left OSU to found the Kernmantle Group and become a full-time gym owner, consultant and professional speaker. Dr. Roberts is also a loan committee member and Director of Sutton Bank of Ohio, a FinTech-focused community bank located in Attica, OH, as well as the CFO of Ascent Ventures, Inc, a climbing gym chain based in San Luis Obisbo, CA, and the Treasurer-Director of USA Climbing.




Gym Design and Construction - An Honest Discussion | Lance Brock, Climb HQ & Adam Koberna, Walltopia


Description: This session will help prospective gym owners know what to expect while building a gym and avoid common mistakes. Objectives include: - Discuss gym design from the perspective of the owner, architect, contractor and wall builder
- How to avoid common mistakes and pitfalls
- Q & A with honest discussion from multiple perspectives About the Presenters: Lance Brock studied architecture at the University of Tennessee and practiced architecture for about 7 years before deciding to open Climb Nashville. He was a sponsored climber and has served on the board of directors for the Access Fund. In 2003, Lance and his business partner, Drew Sloss, had a vision for indoor climbing as a form of fitness and included workout space, yoga, and fitness classes in the first gym they built. They bought their first gym in 2003 and opened the second in 2004. Over the last 16 years they have bought and sold gyms, opened and relocated gyms and built more. They have seen our industry grow from a tiny niche market to a large industry and are glad to be part of the excitement. Adam Koberna... he's built a LOT of gyms.




Startup Panel Part I: Journey to Gym Ownership | Moderated by: Michael Lary, Source Climbing Center


Description: This panel will convene a group of gym owners who are just starting out in their businesses. We will explore their journeys, including obstacles, challenges, lessons learned, and wins. The discussion will be particularly valuable for future gym owners, as well as current owners and operators. There will be time at the end for Q&A. Objectives:

  • Discuss lessons learned throughout the process of funding, constructing, and opening a new gym.
  • Describe things that went well and things that could’ve gone better
  • Provide tips on what to look out for when developing a new gym




Startup Panel Part II: Exploration of the First Four Years | Moderated by: Michael Lary, The Source Climbing Center


Description: In part two of this panel, we will convene a group of gym owners who are a few years into their businesses. We will explore their unique perspectives of the financial, operational, and marketing functions of a commercial climbing gym by relating to a few simple charts drawn from the Moderator’s own experiences. There will be time at the end for Q&A. Objectives:

  • Give participants a tangible sense of what is involved with the finances, operations, and marketing of a running a business.
  • Relate those broader business functions to the panelists’ own industry experiences.
  • Provide insight into what it means to be a gym operator, and how that may impact the type of facility you open or expand with.




Building a Lasting Brand | Hannah Stael von Holstein, Discover Strength


Description: Building a lasting brand starts with your strategy. Think about the Ritz-Carlton, Lexus, Nordstrom - what do they all have in common? A brand that has lasted a lifetime. They are not based on discounts or the next tactic. They know who they are, who they serve, and how they differ from their competition. In this presentation, we will walk through each of these elements to ensure you are standing out from your competition, telling a compelling story to a specific person, and building trust through your branding. The objective of this session is to help attendees: - Determine your differentiators from your competition
- Determine your target market
- Paint the picture for your customer's journey
- Narrow your "say-do" gap About the Presenter: Hannah Stael von Holstein is the VP of Sales and Marketing for Discover Strength, one the largest revenue-producing personal training studios in the country and the 27th fastest-growing private company in Minnesota according to the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.




Gender Lens Investing: Supporting Female Investors and Business Owners in the Climbing Sector | Moderator: Chelsea Burns, Escaladora Ventures


Description: An immense funding gap exists between the financing that women and nonbinary femmes need to start and grow businesses and their current access to capital. Moreover, longstanding gender inequity in the workplace and throughout supply chains has resulted in missed opportunities for improving social and financial returns. Despite the evidence that gender inclusion increases ROI, many business owners and investors overlook the potential of how a gender inclusive lens can help them enhance their internal operational performance, increase market share, and grow the demand for their products and services. And while some businesses do see the benefits of gender inclusion, they often lack the know-how and the technical support required to adopt gender-inclusive strategies.This panel will explore gender lens investing and the incredible opportunity for climbing business owners and investors to become leaders within the gender lens investing movement. About the Moderator: Chelsea Burns is an analyst, an operator, an investor, and a rock climber. She is the founder of Escaladora Ventures, a company that invests in the booming rock climbing sector. Currently she is part owner of Pura Roca, an indoor climbing gym in San Pedro, Costa Rica. In addition to climbing, gender lens investing and environmental sustainability are the leading themes behind her investment thesis. She is a member of Pipeline Angels, whose mission is to teach women and non-binary femmes how to become better angel investors. Chelsea has a decade of experience working in the water and energy efficiency space. Previously she was the COO of Urban Energy Group, an ESCO that finances and installs LED lighting projects across Washington State. Currently, she is a business analysis consultant in the workplace performance sector. She holds dual BAs in International Relations and Anthropology and dual MAs in International Relations and Natural Resources & Sustainable Development. She lives in Seattle with her husband, Jesse, and their dog, Rusty.





STARTUPS/BUSINESS FORMATION

An Update on Economic and Lending Conditions | Matthew Roberts, 5.Life


Description: The economic environment continues to evolve in unexpected ways. In this session, we will review the current economy as it relates to the fitness industry, including wages, costs, and income trends, and recent and looming interest rate changes. Using this as our foundation, we will discuss the impact that the current situation and the near future will have on lending decisions made by banks. About the Presenter: Matt Roberts is the President of 5.Life, a collection of rock-climbing gyms in Ohio and Pennsylvania, as well as the owner of The Kernmantle Group, an agricultural risk management consulting firm. Dr. Roberts became a partner in 5.Life in 2013, while an Agricultural Economics Professor at The Ohio State University. In 2017 Dr. Roberts left OSU to found the Kernmantle Group and become a full-time gym owner, consultant and professional speaker. Dr. Roberts is also a loan committee member and Director of Sutton Bank of Ohio, a FinTech-focused community bank located in Attica, OH, as well as the CFO of Ascent Ventures, Inc, a climbing gym chain based in San Luis Obisbo, CA, and the Treasurer-Director of USA Climbing.




Gym Design and Construction - An Honest Discussion | Lance Brock, Climb HQ & Adam Koberna, Walltopia


Description: This session will help prospective gym owners know what to expect while building a gym and avoid common mistakes. Objectives include: - Discuss gym design from the perspective of the owner, architect, contractor and wall builder
- How to avoid common mistakes and pitfalls
- Q & A with honest discussion from multiple perspectives About the Presenters: Lance Brock studied architecture at the University of Tennessee and practiced architecture for about 7 years before deciding to open Climb Nashville. He was a sponsored climber and has served on the board of directors for the Access Fund. In 2003, Lance and his business partner, Drew Sloss, had a vision for indoor climbing as a form of fitness and included workout space, yoga, and fitness classes in the first gym they built. They bought their first gym in 2003 and opened the second in 2004. Over the last 16 years they have bought and sold gyms, opened and relocated gyms and built more. They have seen our industry grow from a tiny niche market to a large industry and are glad to be part of the excitement. Adam Koberna... he's built a LOT of gyms.




Startup Panel Part I: Journey to Gym Ownership | Moderated by: Michael Lary, Source Climbing Center


Description: This panel will convene a group of gym owners who are just starting out in their businesses. We will explore their journeys, including obstacles, challenges, lessons learned, and wins. The discussion will be particularly valuable for future gym owners, as well as current owners and operators. There will be time at the end for Q&A. Objectives:

  • Discuss lessons learned throughout the process of funding, constructing, and opening a new gym.
  • Describe things that went well and things that could’ve gone better
  • Provide tips on what to look out for when developing a new gym




Startup Panel Part II: Exploration of the First Four Years | Moderated by: Michael Lary, The Source Climbing Center


Description: In part two of this panel, we will convene a group of gym owners who are a few years into their businesses. We will explore their unique perspectives of the financial, operational, and marketing functions of a commercial climbing gym by relating to a few simple charts drawn from the Moderator’s own experiences. There will be time at the end for Q&A. Objectives:

  • Give participants a tangible sense of what is involved with the finances, operations, and marketing of a running a business.
  • Relate those broader business functions to the panelists’ own industry experiences.
  • Provide insight into what it means to be a gym operator, and how that may impact the type of facility you open or expand with.




Building a Lasting Brand | Hannah Stael von Holstein, Discover Strength


Description: Building a lasting brand starts with your strategy. Think about the Ritz-Carlton, Lexus, Nordstrom - what do they all have in common? A brand that has lasted a lifetime. They are not based on discounts or the next tactic. They know who they are, who they serve, and how they differ from their competition. In this presentation, we will walk through each of these elements to ensure you are standing out from your competition, telling a compelling story to a specific person, and building trust through your branding. The objective of this session is to help attendees: - Determine your differentiators from your competition
- Determine your target market
- Paint the picture for your customer's journey
- Narrow your "say-do" gap About the Presenter: Hannah Stael von Holstein is the VP of Sales and Marketing for Discover Strength, one the largest revenue-producing personal training studios in the country and the 27th fastest-growing private company in Minnesota according to the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.




Gender Lens Investing: Supporting Female Investors and Business Owners in the Climbing Sector | Moderator: Chelsea Burns, Escaladora Ventures


Description: An immense funding gap exists between the financing that women and nonbinary femmes need to start and grow businesses and their current access to capital. Moreover, longstanding gender inequity in the workplace and throughout supply chains has resulted in missed opportunities for improving social and financial returns. Despite the evidence that gender inclusion increases ROI, many business owners and investors overlook the potential of how a gender inclusive lens can help them enhance their internal operational performance, increase market share, and grow the demand for their products and services. And while some businesses do see the benefits of gender inclusion, they often lack the know-how and the technical support required to adopt gender-inclusive strategies.This panel will explore gender lens investing and the incredible opportunity for climbing business owners and investors to become leaders within the gender lens investing movement. About the Moderator: Chelsea Burns is an analyst, an operator, an investor, and a rock climber. She is the founder of Escaladora Ventures, a company that invests in the booming rock climbing sector. Currently she is part owner of Pura Roca, an indoor climbing gym in San Pedro, Costa Rica. In addition to climbing, gender lens investing and environmental sustainability are the leading themes behind her investment thesis. She is a member of Pipeline Angels, whose mission is to teach women and non-binary femmes how to become better angel investors. Chelsea has a decade of experience working in the water and energy efficiency space. Previously she was the COO of Urban Energy Group, an ESCO that finances and installs LED lighting projects across Washington State. Currently, she is a business analysis consultant in the workplace performance sector. She holds dual BAs in International Relations and Anthropology and dual MAs in International Relations and Natural Resources & Sustainable Development. She lives in Seattle with her husband, Jesse, and their dog, Rusty.





BUSINESS GROWTH & EXPANSION

North Star: Remembering Our Why | Kevin Jorgeson


Description: During the CWA Summit, you have the opportunity to learn from the best in the business. Whatever your role in the indoor climbing industry, this event is full of resources to help you learn and grow. And the timing is perfect! The stakes have never been higher, with increased mainstream awareness, a competitive market, and a forthcoming Olympic debut, there are a lot of reasons to be optimistic and aggressive. For these same reasons, it’s critical to remember our “why.” The sport and lifestyle of climbing are experiencing a period of unprecedented growth, but what is our responsibility to it? Join Kevin Jorgeson as he shares his “why” and helps you uncover yours. Hear personal stories, including Kevin’s introduction to climbing as an 11-year-old boy, his success on the Dawn Wall, and the vision he’s pursuing for the future. Reconnect with your “why” so you can navigate the future with a renewed sense of purpose. About the Presenter: After discovering rock climbing in 1995, Kevin was instantly hooked. At 14, too young to obtain a work permit, Kevin belayed birthday parties in exchange for Snickers bars until he was old enough to be added to the payroll. From there, Kevin went on to become an instructor, youth team coach, front desk staff, head routesetter, and assistant manager. By his early 20’s, Kevin fully committed to his climbing career and began establishing the most beautiful and dangerous highball boulder problems in the world. In 2009, he began work on the Dawn Wall project with Tommy Caldwell. Six years later, they finally succeeded on what is considered the hardest big wall free climb in the world. The ascent earned both Kevin and Tommy the American Alpine Club’s highest distinction: Lifetime Honorary Membership. In addition to his climbing career, Kevin is the co-founder of Session Climbing and Fitness, a 23,000 square foot, ground-up climbing gym being built in downtown Santa Rosa in 2021. He is also the co-founder of the 1Climb Foundation, which has raised over $1.5m to date to help introduce 100,000 kids to climbing by installing climbing walls in Boys and Girls Clubs across the United States.





LEGAL/RISK MANAGEMENT

North Star: Remembering Our Why | Kevin Jorgeson


Description: During the CWA Summit, you have the opportunity to learn from the best in the business. Whatever your role in the indoor climbing industry, this event is full of resources to help you learn and grow. And the timing is perfect! The stakes have never been higher, with increased mainstream awareness, a competitive market, and a forthcoming Olympic debut, there are a lot of reasons to be optimistic and aggressive. For these same reasons, it’s critical to remember our “why.” The sport and lifestyle of climbing are experiencing a period of unprecedented growth, but what is our responsibility to it? Join Kevin Jorgeson as he shares his “why” and helps you uncover yours. Hear personal stories, including Kevin’s introduction to climbing as an 11-year-old boy, his success on the Dawn Wall, and the vision he’s pursuing for the future. Reconnect with your “why” so you can navigate the future with a renewed sense of purpose. About the Presenter: After discovering rock climbing in 1995, Kevin was instantly hooked. At 14, too young to obtain a work permit, Kevin belayed birthday parties in exchange for Snickers bars until he was old enough to be added to the payroll. From there, Kevin went on to become an instructor, youth team coach, front desk staff, head routesetter, and assistant manager. By his early 20’s, Kevin fully committed to his climbing career and began establishing the most beautiful and dangerous highball boulder problems in the world. In 2009, he began work on the Dawn Wall project with Tommy Caldwell. Six years later, they finally succeeded on what is considered the hardest big wall free climb in the world. The ascent earned both Kevin and Tommy the American Alpine Club’s highest distinction: Lifetime Honorary Membership. In addition to his climbing career, Kevin is the co-founder of Session Climbing and Fitness, a 23,000 square foot, ground-up climbing gym being built in downtown Santa Rosa in 2021. He is also the co-founder of the 1Climb Foundation, which has raised over $1.5m to date to help introduce 100,000 kids to climbing by installing climbing walls in Boys and Girls Clubs across the United States.





COACHING/TRAINING

North Star: Remembering Our Why | Kevin Jorgeson


Description: During the CWA Summit, you have the opportunity to learn from the best in the business. Whatever your role in the indoor climbing industry, this event is full of resources to help you learn and grow. And the timing is perfect! The stakes have never been higher, with increased mainstream awareness, a competitive market, and a forthcoming Olympic debut, there are a lot of reasons to be optimistic and aggressive. For these same reasons, it’s critical to remember our “why.” The sport and lifestyle of climbing are experiencing a period of unprecedented growth, but what is our responsibility to it? Join Kevin Jorgeson as he shares his “why” and helps you uncover yours. Hear personal stories, including Kevin’s introduction to climbing as an 11-year-old boy, his success on the Dawn Wall, and the vision he’s pursuing for the future. Reconnect with your “why” so you can navigate the future with a renewed sense of purpose. About the Presenter: After discovering rock climbing in 1995, Kevin was instantly hooked. At 14, too young to obtain a work permit, Kevin belayed birthday parties in exchange for Snickers bars until he was old enough to be added to the payroll. From there, Kevin went on to become an instructor, youth team coach, front desk staff, head routesetter, and assistant manager. By his early 20’s, Kevin fully committed to his climbing career and began establishing the most beautiful and dangerous highball boulder problems in the world. In 2009, he began work on the Dawn Wall project with Tommy Caldwell. Six years later, they finally succeeded on what is considered the hardest big wall free climb in the world. The ascent earned both Kevin and Tommy the American Alpine Club’s highest distinction: Lifetime Honorary Membership. In addition to his climbing career, Kevin is the co-founder of Session Climbing and Fitness, a 23,000 square foot, ground-up climbing gym being built in downtown Santa Rosa in 2021. He is also the co-founder of the 1Climb Foundation, which has raised over $1.5m to date to help introduce 100,000 kids to climbing by installing climbing walls in Boys and Girls Clubs across the United States.





ROUTESETTING

An Update on Economic and Lending Conditions | Matthew Roberts, 5.Life


Description: The economic environment continues to evolve in unexpected ways. In this session, we will review the current economy as it relates to the fitness industry, including wages, costs, and income trends, and recent and looming interest rate changes. Using this as our foundation, we will discuss the impact that the current situation and the near future will have on lending decisions made by banks. About the Presenter: Matt Roberts is the President of 5.Life, a collection of rock-climbing gyms in Ohio and Pennsylvania, as well as the owner of The Kernmantle Group, an agricultural risk management consulting firm. Dr. Roberts became a partner in 5.Life in 2013, while an Agricultural Economics Professor at The Ohio State University. In 2017 Dr. Roberts left OSU to found the Kernmantle Group and become a full-time gym owner, consultant and professional speaker. Dr. Roberts is also a loan committee member and Director of Sutton Bank of Ohio, a FinTech-focused community bank located in Attica, OH, as well as the CFO of Ascent Ventures, Inc, a climbing gym chain based in San Luis Obisbo, CA, and the Treasurer-Director of USA Climbing.




Gym Design and Construction - An Honest Discussion | Lance Brock, Climb HQ & Adam Koberna, Walltopia


Description: This session will help prospective gym owners know what to expect while building a gym and avoid common mistakes. Objectives include: - Discuss gym design from the perspective of the owner, architect, contractor and wall builder
- How to avoid common mistakes and pitfalls
- Q & A with honest discussion from multiple perspectives About the Presenters: Lance Brock studied architecture at the University of Tennessee and practiced architecture for about 7 years before deciding to open Climb Nashville. He was a sponsored climber and has served on the board of directors for the Access Fund. In 2003, Lance and his business partner, Drew Sloss, had a vision for indoor climbing as a form of fitness and included workout space, yoga, and fitness classes in the first gym they built. They bought their first gym in 2003 and opened the second in 2004. Over the last 16 years they have bought and sold gyms, opened and relocated gyms and built more. They have seen our industry grow from a tiny niche market to a large industry and are glad to be part of the excitement. Adam Koberna... he's built a LOT of gyms.




Startup Panel Part I: Journey to Gym Ownership | Moderated by: Michael Lary, Source Climbing Center


Description: This panel will convene a group of gym owners who are just starting out in their businesses. We will explore their journeys, including obstacles, challenges, lessons learned, and wins. The discussion will be particularly valuable for future gym owners, as well as current owners and operators. There will be time at the end for Q&A. Objectives:

  • Discuss lessons learned throughout the process of funding, constructing, and opening a new gym.
  • Describe things that went well and things that could’ve gone better
  • Provide tips on what to look out for when developing a new gym




Startup Panel Part II: Exploration of the First Four Years | Moderated by: Michael Lary, The Source Climbing Center


Description: In part two of this panel, we will convene a group of gym owners who are a few years into their businesses. We will explore their unique perspectives of the financial, operational, and marketing functions of a commercial climbing gym by relating to a few simple charts drawn from the Moderator’s own experiences. There will be time at the end for Q&A. Objectives:

  • Give participants a tangible sense of what is involved with the finances, operations, and marketing of a running a business.
  • Relate those broader business functions to the panelists’ own industry experiences.
  • Provide insight into what it means to be a gym operator, and how that may impact the type of facility you open or expand with.




Building a Lasting Brand | Hannah Stael von Holstein, Discover Strength


Description: Building a lasting brand starts with your strategy. Think about the Ritz-Carlton, Lexus, Nordstrom - what do they all have in common? A brand that has lasted a lifetime. They are not based on discounts or the next tactic. They know who they are, who they serve, and how they differ from their competition. In this presentation, we will walk through each of these elements to ensure you are standing out from your competition, telling a compelling story to a specific person, and building trust through your branding. The objective of this session is to help attendees: - Determine your differentiators from your competition
- Determine your target market
- Paint the picture for your customer's journey
- Narrow your "say-do" gap About the Presenter: Hannah Stael von Holstein is the VP of Sales and Marketing for Discover Strength, one the largest revenue-producing personal training studios in the country and the 27th fastest-growing private company in Minnesota according to the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.




Gender Lens Investing: Supporting Female Investors and Business Owners in the Climbing Sector | Moderator: Chelsea Burns, Escaladora Ventures


Description: An immense funding gap exists between the financing that women and nonbinary femmes need to start and grow businesses and their current access to capital. Moreover, longstanding gender inequity in the workplace and throughout supply chains has resulted in missed opportunities for improving social and financial returns. Despite the evidence that gender inclusion increases ROI, many business owners and investors overlook the potential of how a gender inclusive lens can help them enhance their internal operational performance, increase market share, and grow the demand for their products and services. And while some businesses do see the benefits of gender inclusion, they often lack the know-how and the technical support required to adopt gender-inclusive strategies.This panel will explore gender lens investing and the incredible opportunity for climbing business owners and investors to become leaders within the gender lens investing movement. About the Moderator: Chelsea Burns is an analyst, an operator, an investor, and a rock climber. She is the founder of Escaladora Ventures, a company that invests in the booming rock climbing sector. Currently she is part owner of Pura Roca, an indoor climbing gym in San Pedro, Costa Rica. In addition to climbing, gender lens investing and environmental sustainability are the leading themes behind her investment thesis. She is a member of Pipeline Angels, whose mission is to teach women and non-binary femmes how to become better angel investors. Chelsea has a decade of experience working in the water and energy efficiency space. Previously she was the COO of Urban Energy Group, an ESCO that finances and installs LED lighting projects across Washington State. Currently, she is a business analysis consultant in the workplace performance sector. She holds dual BAs in International Relations and Anthropology and dual MAs in International Relations and Natural Resources & Sustainable Development. She lives in Seattle with her husband, Jesse, and their dog, Rusty.





PROGRAM MANAGEMENT

Creative Climbing Activities | Pat Brehm & Bix Firer, The Headwall Group


Description: In this session participants will learn new climbing activities that train participants in technical climbing skills and social skills by participating in them as they are led by experienced facilitators. All the activities in the session can be used to bring new life to participants' youth or adult programs. The activities will also act as a model for participant's to invent their own creative activities for their programs. This session will be hands on, engaging and fun for everyone who joins. About the Presenters: Patrick Brehm (BA Marquette University) has worked in several capacities of youth advocacy, developing and delivering curriculum based in social-emotional learning, experiential education, and special education. He has passionately brought high-level, energetic facilitation and training to diverse communities of youth and adults in Milwaukee and Denver through various non-profits, schools, and community-oriented businesses. As a dedicated rock climbing instructor, Pat is passionate about sharing a unique perspective, encouraging groups and individuals to use rock climbing and other adventures to find connection and balance within oneself, community, and natural environment. When Pat is not teaching, you can find him climbing. Bix Firer (MA University of Chicago, BA University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee) has worked in experiential and adventure education with national non-profits and school districts in Chicago, Milwaukee, Colorado, and Alaska since 2007. . Bix is currently the Director of Outdoor Programs at the College of Idaho and consults with youth serving programs and climbing gyms with The Headwall Group. His passion is facilitating challenging and fun experiences that help the next generation of facilitators approach themselves and each other with excitement, empathy, and a sense of adventure. While not working, Bix can be found exploring the rivers and mountains of Idaho by his own power.




Enhancing Your One on One Coaching Program | Brian Soileau, New Orleans Boulder Lounge


Description: Learn how to enhance your one on one coaching and training sales through stronger relationships between your trainers, management staff, and members. Make sure your trainers are approachable, your personal coaching programs are sellable and interesting, and find ways to link your trainers and members in meaningful ways.​ About the Presenter: Brian was employed in the traditional fitness industry in multiple roles including sports & wellness director and assistant executive director, supervising fitness, youth sports, aquatics, database management, membership and marketing for 12 years. Brian also worked for as a fitness business consultant with JCC Association of North America for four years, serving as the sports & wellness and membership consultant. He provided staff training in sales, program development, customer service, data and database management, and member engagement. He is currently the Director of Operations for the New Orleans Boulder Lounge.




Event Sponsorship: From Strategy to Procurement to Delivery, How to Create Sustainable Partnerships | Chloe Mandell, Mandell Experiences LLC


Description: This session is a must for any manager or staff involved in events at your gym. Let’s face it, events cost money and sometimes it’s too much for your gym to foot the whole bill. Or maybe you’re just looking for some raffle prizes or ways to engage with the brands in your pro shop. Whatever the case may be, this session will give you all the tools you’ll need to approach sponsorship and sponsors with confidence. Chloe Mandell will cover everything from sponsorship strategy (including 5 simple questions to ask at the beginning of any event, and what sponsorship is like from the sponsor’s point of view), the 4 Steps to getting sponsors, and how to deliver on your sponsorship like a champ so they keep coming back. Join for a session packed with information that will serve you even outside of the context of events, and bring your questions for a robust Q&A session at the end. This session will:

  1. Inform how to approach event sponsorship strategically – 5 simple questions to ask yourself at the beginning of any event
  2. Inform how to conduct sponsorship “sales” – 4 steps to getting sponsors
  3. Inform how to properly deliver on a sponsorship
  4. Inform overall how to create and maintain sustainable event partnerships
About the Presenter: Chloe Mandell brings a unique understanding of sponsorship from every angle, having served Xbox and Cisco Systems at the X Games and Olympic Games, respectively, as well as procuring sponsorship for climbing and non-endemic events. Chloe got her start as Marketing Manager at The Circuit Bouldering Gym in 2005. In 2015 she founded her own events company, Mandell Experiences LLC, and ran Psicobloc. Since then she has supported such events as the Portland Boulder Rally (The Circuit), The Hang (Earth Treks), Woman Up (Touchstone), ProLo (Momentum), TriState Bouldering Series (The Cliffs), Inside Out Challenge (Access Fund), and founded Comp Calendar.




Developing the Whole Person: Coach & Inter-Athlete Mentorship | Jessica Haynes, Hoosier Heights


Description: Coaching youth athletes is both a particularly complex and particularly important skill. It requires trainers to not only focus on developing strong athletes, but healthy, confident ones, and ones capable of independence, goal-setting, leadership, responsible decision-making, self-reflection, emotional regulation, mental fortitude, and more. The development of the whole person, rather than just the athlete, requires coaches to have a skillset beyond knowledge of training protocols, and this discussion will not only present those challenges but will present realistic, practical approaches to instilling service-mindedness and leadership skills in youth athletes and developing close, positive bonds between teammates and competitors that will last a lifetime. Objectives:

  • Emphasize to coaches the importance of our role as mentors and developers of future community leaders, and the importance of instilling within our athletes a service-minded attitude toward their fellow teammates, competitors, and the community as a whole
  • Provide coaches with practical tools for instilling service-mindedness and leadership skills in youth athletes and developing close, positive bonds between teammates and competitors
  • Describe an exceptional and unique aspect of our program that has become the foundation of our Team culture and how we have utilized our inter-athlete mentorship program to help develop a service-minded attitude and leadership skills among our athletes
About the Presenter: Jessi Haynes is the Head Coach of Team Hoosier Heights. Jessi holds a Master's degree in Foreign Policy from American University in Washington, DC and a Bachelor's degree in Chinese & Political Science from Indiana University. She spent several years in the corporate world before leaving to pursue a career coaching rock climbing in 2015. Jessi believes in following your heart and intuition in everything that you do and wants her impact on the climbing community to be more than making strong climbers - she wants to help instill confidence, independence, and positive decision-making abilities in all youth athletes so they can pursue whatever brings them true joy and fulfillment in life. She believes children have a greater capacity for independent thought and understanding than they are often given credit for and approaches her coaching from that perspective.





LUNCH N LEARN SESSIONS

Creative Climbing Activities | Pat Brehm & Bix Firer, The Headwall Group


Description: In this session participants will learn new climbing activities that train participants in technical climbing skills and social skills by participating in them as they are led by experienced facilitators. All the activities in the session can be used to bring new life to participants' youth or adult programs. The activities will also act as a model for participant's to invent their own creative activities for their programs. This session will be hands on, engaging and fun for everyone who joins. About the Presenters: Patrick Brehm (BA Marquette University) has worked in several capacities of youth advocacy, developing and delivering curriculum based in social-emotional learning, experiential education, and special education. He has passionately brought high-level, energetic facilitation and training to diverse communities of youth and adults in Milwaukee and Denver through various non-profits, schools, and community-oriented businesses. As a dedicated rock climbing instructor, Pat is passionate about sharing a unique perspective, encouraging groups and individuals to use rock climbing and other adventures to find connection and balance within oneself, community, and natural environment. When Pat is not teaching, you can find him climbing. Bix Firer (MA University of Chicago, BA University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee) has worked in experiential and adventure education with national non-profits and school districts in Chicago, Milwaukee, Colorado, and Alaska since 2007. . Bix is currently the Director of Outdoor Programs at the College of Idaho and consults with youth serving programs and climbing gyms with The Headwall Group. His passion is facilitating challenging and fun experiences that help the next generation of facilitators approach themselves and each other with excitement, empathy, and a sense of adventure. While not working, Bix can be found exploring the rivers and mountains of Idaho by his own power.




Enhancing Your One on One Coaching Program | Brian Soileau, New Orleans Boulder Lounge


Description: Learn how to enhance your one on one coaching and training sales through stronger relationships between your trainers, management staff, and members. Make sure your trainers are approachable, your personal coaching programs are sellable and interesting, and find ways to link your trainers and members in meaningful ways.​ About the Presenter: Brian was employed in the traditional fitness industry in multiple roles including sports & wellness director and assistant executive director, supervising fitness, youth sports, aquatics, database management, membership and marketing for 12 years. Brian also worked for as a fitness business consultant with JCC Association of North America for four years, serving as the sports & wellness and membership consultant. He provided staff training in sales, program development, customer service, data and database management, and member engagement. He is currently the Director of Operations for the New Orleans Boulder Lounge.




Event Sponsorship: From Strategy to Procurement to Delivery, How to Create Sustainable Partnerships | Chloe Mandell, Mandell Experiences LLC


Description: This session is a must for any manager or staff involved in events at your gym. Let’s face it, events cost money and sometimes it’s too much for your gym to foot the whole bill. Or maybe you’re just looking for some raffle prizes or ways to engage with the brands in your pro shop. Whatever the case may be, this session will give you all the tools you’ll need to approach sponsorship and sponsors with confidence. Chloe Mandell will cover everything from sponsorship strategy (including 5 simple questions to ask at the beginning of any event, and what sponsorship is like from the sponsor’s point of view), the 4 Steps to getting sponsors, and how to deliver on your sponsorship like a champ so they keep coming back. Join for a session packed with information that will serve you even outside of the context of events, and bring your questions for a robust Q&A session at the end. This session will:

  1. Inform how to approach event sponsorship strategically – 5 simple questions to ask yourself at the beginning of any event
  2. Inform how to conduct sponsorship “sales” – 4 steps to getting sponsors
  3. Inform how to properly deliver on a sponsorship
  4. Inform overall how to create and maintain sustainable event partnerships
About the Presenter: Chloe Mandell brings a unique understanding of sponsorship from every angle, having served Xbox and Cisco Systems at the X Games and Olympic Games, respectively, as well as procuring sponsorship for climbing and non-endemic events. Chloe got her start as Marketing Manager at The Circuit Bouldering Gym in 2005. In 2015 she founded her own events company, Mandell Experiences LLC, and ran Psicobloc. Since then she has supported such events as the Portland Boulder Rally (The Circuit), The Hang (Earth Treks), Woman Up (Touchstone), ProLo (Momentum), TriState Bouldering Series (The Cliffs), Inside Out Challenge (Access Fund), and founded Comp Calendar.




Developing the Whole Person: Coach & Inter-Athlete Mentorship | Jessica Haynes, Hoosier Heights


Description: Coaching youth athletes is both a particularly complex and particularly important skill. It requires trainers to not only focus on developing strong athletes, but healthy, confident ones, and ones capable of independence, goal-setting, leadership, responsible decision-making, self-reflection, emotional regulation, mental fortitude, and more. The development of the whole person, rather than just the athlete, requires coaches to have a skillset beyond knowledge of training protocols, and this discussion will not only present those challenges but will present realistic, practical approaches to instilling service-mindedness and leadership skills in youth athletes and developing close, positive bonds between teammates and competitors that will last a lifetime. Objectives:

  • Emphasize to coaches the importance of our role as mentors and developers of future community leaders, and the importance of instilling within our athletes a service-minded attitude toward their fellow teammates, competitors, and the community as a whole
  • Provide coaches with practical tools for instilling service-mindedness and leadership skills in youth athletes and developing close, positive bonds between teammates and competitors
  • Describe an exceptional and unique aspect of our program that has become the foundation of our Team culture and how we have utilized our inter-athlete mentorship program to help develop a service-minded attitude and leadership skills among our athletes
About the Presenter: Jessi Haynes is the Head Coach of Team Hoosier Heights. Jessi holds a Master's degree in Foreign Policy from American University in Washington, DC and a Bachelor's degree in Chinese & Political Science from Indiana University. She spent several years in the corporate world before leaving to pursue a career coaching rock climbing in 2015. Jessi believes in following your heart and intuition in everything that you do and wants her impact on the climbing community to be more than making strong climbers - she wants to help instill confidence, independence, and positive decision-making abilities in all youth athletes so they can pursue whatever brings them true joy and fulfillment in life. She believes children have a greater capacity for independent thought and understanding than they are often given credit for and approaches her coaching from that perspective.





CONTACT US

720.838.8284

events@climbingwallindustry.org

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