Climate advocacy organization Protect Our Winters (POW) is honored to announce the hiring of Erin Sprague as CEO. Erin is the third CEO and first female to lead POW in the organization’s history, which was founded in 2007 by professional snowboarder Jeremy Jones. Currently serving as POW’s Board Chair, Erin brings 20 years of professional experience at opinion-leading and mission-driven brands, proven leadership and commitment to climate advocacy, and her unique experiences at both for-profit and nonprofit organizations.
“As we enter 2024, the stakes on climate action could not be higher. Society is in an “all hands on deck” scenario, and we are so excited to welcome Erin Sprague as our new leader. Erin’s joining POW as the CEO represents a new era as we will draw off her background in business, climate tech, and marketing to lead POW in 2024 and beyond. As the POW Board Chair, I’ve seen her tenacity, intelligence, and commitment to reaching our climate goals firsthand, and I’m confident she’ll bring fresh energy, perspective, and opportunity to drive impact at POW and in the climate movement,” said Jeremy Jones.
Erin attended Harvard, started her career at Blackstone where she focused on policy work, and attended Stanford’s Graduate School of Business before transitioning to the outdoor industry. She led the women’s division at Specialized Bicycles, was VP of Marketing at fitness event company Virgin Sport, and was SVP and Chief Brand Officer at Aspen Skiing Company where she led marketing, sales, and retail. Most recently, she has helped launch climate tech start-ups in food waste management and heat pump adoption. Erin is passionate about skiing, hiking, cycling, and running, and was previously the youngest woman to complete marathons on all seven continents. Erin is currently running marathons in 50 states (15 and counting!) and lives in Boulder, Colorado with her family.
“After years as a POW Brand Alliance Partner and Board member, I have experienced the passion and power of this organization first-hand,” says Erin. “Climate is the opportunity of our lifetime, and POW’s unique combination of athletes, creators, scientists, and brand partners creates the most compelling platform for change. I can’t wait to dig in with our talented team, welcome more outdoor enthusiasts into our community, and accelerate POW’s leadership in the climate movement.”
Erin brings proven marketing and leadership skills in the sports and outdoor industry, along with a deep passion to make an impact with climate. Former colleagues have regarded Erin as highly motivated and inclusive among diverse voices and community stakeholders. POW has been fortunate to see these traits demonstrated in her role serving on the POW BOD, since January 2022.
POW Board and Alliance member Hilary Hutcheson adds, “2023 was the warmest year on record, which is something our river, snow, and trail communities have understood and endured for years. Erin is stepping up to lead POW at a mission-critical moment, rallying the Outdoor State to lead the future vitality of our planet.”
Erin is already well versed in POW’s mission of protecting the places we live and experiences we love from climate change and the organization’s tremendous opportunity to empower the Outdoor State to be the most influential voice for climate action. Sprague will succeed Torrey Udall, who has served as Interim Executive Director since Fall of 2023.
About Protect Our Winters (POW):
Protect Our Winters is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that helps passionate outdoor people protect the places and experiences they love from climate change. Founded in 2007 by professional snowboarder Jeremy Jones, POW is a community of athletes, scientists, creatives, and business leaders advancing non-partisan policies that protect our world today and for future generations. For more information, visit www.protectourwinters.org.