The awards are given to people, brands, and organizations for their dedication to “getting more people outside, supporting access, and improving the outdoor experience.”
The winners will be announced at the live awards ceremony at the Hyatt Regency in Salt Lake City on June 20, 2023, at Outdoor Retailer Summer.
“All of this year’s finalists are committed to building a better experience – both in the outdoors and to improve overall quality of life – and, they’re focused on providing more sustainable and inclusive pathways toward outdoor recreation,” said Marisa Nicholson, Outdoor Retailer senior vice president and show director. “Their work and their passions inspire others to think beyond the ordinary and embrace the joy that nature provides.”
Inspiration Awards Finalists
Individual: Becky Rom, volunteer national chair of the Campaign to Save the Boundary Waters, retired attorney, and citizen activist; Will “Akuna” Robinson, Triple Crown thru-hiker, 2022 George Mallory award recipient, and community advocate; and Alma Busby-Williams, director of equity & inclusion at the North Cascades Institute and advocate.
Emerging leader: Cassie Abel, founder and CEO of Wild Rye and creator of Women-Led Wednesday; James Merrill, founder of Opolis and inventor of StokedPlastic; and Brian Mister, co-founder of Around the Crown 10K: A Sustainable Running Race.
Manufacturer: BUFF, specializing in headwear and neckwear accessories for outdoor activities; GU Energy Labs, a performance sports nutrition company; and ILLA, a women’s adventure collective.
Non-profit: Adaptive Adventures, which provides outdoor sports opportunities for children, adults, and veterans with physical disabilities and their families; SOS Outreach, a youth development organization; and Youth Empowerment Stewards (YES) Internship Program, which offers employment and education benefits by providing internships at public land agencies.
Retailer: Alpinistas, a women-led online-only retailer; Ascent Outdoors, an outdoor equipment and clothing store in Seattle; and Great Outdoor Provision Company, a retailer with nine locations in North Carolina and Virginia.
Inspiration Awards Ceremony
The awards ceremony will once again be hosted by rock climber, outdoor advocate, and past recipient Timmy O’Neill. Held on the second floor of the Hyatt Regency, located adjacent to the Salt Palace Convention Center, doors for the ceremony will open at 6 p.m. with food and drinks provided. The ceremony is open to all Outdoor Retailer attendees.
Outdoor Retailer Summer runs June 19-21, 2023, at the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City, providing opportunities to discover, learn, and connect with the outdoor community. Alongside industry celebrations, attendees can find three days of education sessions, networking events, and nearly 700 exhibitors Registration and the daily schedule can be found at outdoorretailer.com.