Tying In: Progress on Vision 2022

In this piece from Mountaineer magazine, we hear from CEO Tom Vogl on our progress toward Vision 2022.
Tom Vogl Tom Vogl
Mountaineers CEO
March 14, 2020
Tying In: Progress on Vision 2022

Lead innovation in outdoor education, engage future Mountaineers, and advocate for wild places: these are the three strategic initiatives at the foundation of our current strategic plan, Vision 2022. It’s hard to believe we’re nearing the midpoint of the plan that has guided our priorities and investments over the last two years. 

Vision 2022 is bold, and we intentionally set ambitious goals to support our members, volunteers, and the broader outdoor community in the Pacific Northwest and beyond. I can genuinely say that I’m proud of the progress we’ve made on Vision 2022 and am excited about what lies ahead. Some of the highlights over the last two years include:

  • Educating and engaging our members in important conservation issues like the 2019 passage of the Public Lands Package. This legislation, signed into law last year, protected the Methow Headwaters, permanently reauthorized the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and created the Mountains to Sound National Heritage area.
  • Establishing an organization-wide Equity and Inclusion (E&I) effort, led by a committee chartered by our board of directors. Guided by this committee, we took more than 55 actions in the past year to increase transparency and sense of belonging for all members of our community; this included communications, volunteer and staff training sessions, and process improvements. Our engagement in E&I work will be long-term and multi-level, and I’m excited by the commitment at all levels of our organization.
  • Launching a new Leadership Development series, providing more frequent and readily-available education opportunities for our 3,000 volunteers to help recognize and expand their capabilities.
  • Raising the bar on the quality and consistency of our climbing programs through the Progressive Climbing Education program, the Alpine Ambassadors program, and by creating national volunteer climbing education standards in partnership with the American Alpine Club, Colorado Mountain Club, and the Mazamas. 
  • Expanding the reach and impact of our youth programs by adding 20 new partners and a gear lending library. More than half of our youth participants are able to participate thanks to donor-funded scholarships. 
  • Creating a Carbon Footprint Reduction Committee to measure and systematically reduce our impact on the climate. From large projects like converting the Seattle Program Center to solar power to smaller efforts to serve more plant-based foods at events, The Mountaineers is committed to doing our part to address the climate crisis. 

While I’m pleased with our progress on Vision 2022, we hoped to accomplish a number of things that are yet unresourced. For example, one of our ambitious Vision 2022 goals was to expand the number of Teaching & Gathering Places, which support our members and programs and allow us to offer more local opportunities to learn outdoor skills. And, even though we’ve made some investments in our conservation programs, the development and recognition of our volunteers, E&I, and reducing our carbon footprint, there are more things we could be doing to accelerate these efforts. 

In the coming months, we’ll be reaching back out to our community in a variety of ways to solicit your feedback about what actions we should prioritize in the second half of Vision 2022. Our focus will be on developing clear priorities and specific plans for how we’ll fund the projects we commit to. As we did in the original creation of Vision 2022, we’ll co-develop this plan by listening to our community and sharing frequent and transparent updates.  

P.S. If you have feedback or ideas you’d like to share with me and the Vision 2022 sub-committee working on this effort, please email me at tomv@mountaineers.org

This article originally appeared in our Spring 2020 issue of Mountaineer Magazine. To view the original article in magazine form and read more stories from our publication, visit our magazine archive.

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