For years, outdoor brands have used high-profile athletes, mountaineers, and explorers to help sell gear. The idea has always been that when customers learn what kind of equipment their heroes take with them into the field, perhaps they will want to use those same tents, backpacks, boots, and jackets, too. But recently, Mountain Hardwear decided to take a different tactic when choosing its brand ambassadors, searching instead for a new breed of heroes that are still incredibly inspiring, just in a different way.
Using the tagline “different times call for different heroes,” Mountain Hardwear launched the Impact Initiative to introduce its latest group of sponsored athletes. Dubbed the “Ambassadors of Impact,” these men and women are outdoor personalities with impressive résumés, including mountain guides, professional climbers, photographers, and explorers. But they are also environmentalists, humanitarians, and conservationists, and they are storytellers who have some fascinating projects to share with the world.
The list of ambassadors includes impressive names like Freddie Wilkinson, Garret Madison, and Mike Libecki, who are among the top mountaineers in the world. They are joined by polar explorer Vincent Colliard and ecologist Charles Post, as well as professional climbers Kyra Condie and Angie Payne.
In addition to being top-notch athletes, each member of the team is working on a unique and interesting project designed to preserve and protect our favorite outdoor playgrounds too. For instance, Topher White is using old cell phones to create listening posts that could prevent illegal logging, while Sonya Iverson is introducing slacklining to the Middle East while assisting refugees at the same time.
In all, the Impact Initiative program features 18 different athletes and adventurers, but Mountain Hardwear promises that in the weeks and months ahead, we can expect more to join the team. The goal is to help these inspiring men and women to not only be recognized for their athletic accomplishments but the great environmental and humanitarian efforts that they are pursuing as well.
The Impact Initiative website includes profiles of all of the ambassadors and features videos that share more information about them, as well as their personal project. If you’re looking for a little inspiration today, this is certainly a good place to start.