10 Essential Questions: Tom Vogl

Meet Tom Vogl, the new CEO of The Mountaineers, who is thrilled to combine his personal passions with a job leading this great organization to positively impact the lives of individuals and the well-being of our community.
The Mountaineers The Mountaineers
February 24, 2016

Each week we bring you a personal story from one of our members. For our member profile this week we talked to ....

Name: Tom Vogl
Hometown: Seattle, WA
Member Since: December 2015
Occupation: CEO of The Mountaineers
Favorite Activities: Mountaineering, rock climbing, backcountry and nordic skiing, hiking, and spending time outdoors with my family.

10 ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS

WHY WERE YOU INTERESTED IN JOINING THE MOUNTAINEERS STAFF AS CEO?

The mission of The Mountaineers is highly motivating to me. I love exploring wild places and helping other people learn where to go and how to do new outdoor activities. I’m a believer that we must recreate responsibly on our public lands and that we must protect wilderness so it can be enjoyed by future generations. The opportunity to combine those personal passions with a job leading an organization with the values and history of The Mountaineers is like a dream come true.

WHAT ARE YOUR IMPRESSIONS OF THE MOUNTAINEERS ORGANIZATION?

The Mountaineers organization is simply amazing. The staff is top-notch, and the talent and commitment of our volunteers is jaw-dropping. Everyone here is so passionate about what we do - the enthusiasm is infectious. The opportunity to work with a team like this is literally once in a lifetime.

WHO/WHAT INSPIRES YOU?

I am a climber, a skier, a hiker; I love to play in the mountains. My deep love of wild places has inspired me to get involved in helping develop the next generation of outdoor enthusiasts and to advocate for important causes such as wilderness conservation and responsible access. Whether getting my own family outside or volunteer work I’ve done in the past through groups like the Boy Scouts, I sincerely enjoy seeing the discovery and joy that kids experience when they have fun in outdoors. I’m a believer that when we help make the outdoors a welcome and fun place for all people, we inspire them to be good stewards of our public lands. It’s a simple, yet powerful virtuous circle. I find that process inspirational.

WHAT FUTURE OPPORTUNITIES DO YOU SEE FOR THE MOUNTAINEERS?

One of the biggest opportunities I see for The Mountaineers in the coming years is to raise our visibility both here in the Pacific Northwest and nationally. Mountaineers Books is a world-class publisher, we offer some of the best outdoor classes and programs on the planet for both adults and kids, and we’re a leader in conservation and access-related advocacy. Yet, many people haven’t heard of The Mountaineers and fewer still know much about what we do. By increasing our visibility, we will have an even greater opportunity to positively impact the lives of individuals and the well-being of our community.

The Mountaineers is incredibly fortunate to have deep capabilities in both outdoor programs and publishing. I’m excited about the opportunity for these divisions of The Mountaineers to work even more closely together.

WHAT DOES ADVENTURE MEAN TO YOU?

To me, adventure is all about the excitement of discovery. It’s going to a new place, meeting different people along the way, challenging yourself to try new activities or nurturing lifelong passions. Living in the Northwest for the last 10 years and raising a family here has opened up a whole new world of adventures to me. I’m constantly struck by how fortunate we are to live in such a great place.

Lightning Round

Sunrise or sunset? Sunrise, for sure. I’m very much a morning person, especially after my first coffee.
Smile or game face?
  Smile.
What's your happy place? Anywhere in the North Cascades. It’s one of the most amazing ecosystems in the world and a playground for activities like climbing, skiing and hiking that is second to none.
If you could be a rock star at any 
outdoor activity overnight, what would it be? Rock climbing. I’d like to be better on rock but it doesn’t come as naturally to me as skiing or glacier mountaineering.

Tom will take the helm on February 29. Read the press release announcing his appointment.


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Dick Maguire
Dick Maguire says:
Fri, Mar 4, 2016 9:40 AM

Tom showed up at the Navigation workshop last night to meet the volunteers and to assist with the instruction. He ended working with a group of students as the second/new instructor at their table. Very Impressive! Thanks Tom!