U.S. Ski & Snowboard, the Olympic national governing body of skiing and snowboarding in the United States, today announced a new four-year partnership with the National Brotherhood of Skiers (NBS). Founded in 1973, the NBS promotes winter sports among minorities and seeks to develop elite-level minority winter sports athletes. U.S. Ski & Snowboard and NBS will work together to increase the participation of minorities in elite-level skiing and snowboarding competition.
“We are extremely pleased to partner and work for hand in hand with U.S. Ski & Snowboard. Their goal and the goals of the National Brotherhood of Skiers clearly focus on the same path of being the best in the world and making snowsports and elite-level competition more inclusive to African Americans and people of color. Elevating an African American to a World Cup podium in skiing and snowboarding would bring the United States to a new level of being the best in the world.”
– National Brotherhood of Skiers President Henri Rivers
This new partnership seeks to establish a comprehensive program involving outreach efforts, training, funding and other resources aimed at achieving athletic excellence and furthering the mission of the NBS and developing a pipeline of elite-level minority winter sports athletes. U.S. Ski & Snowboard will provide NBS coaches access to its Sport Education programs as well as provide training opportunities to NBS athletes commensurate with their level of athletic accomplishment and qualifications. Both organizations will facilitate access to resources for minority athletes who have experienced economic barriers to the entry into and continued participation in winter sports.
“We are honored to officially partner with the National Brotherhood of Skiers. I regret we have not done so sooner, as our missions are aligned in making the U.S. Best in the World at Olympic skiing and snowboarding. We cannot truly be the best until we are more inclusive and accessible to all. We recognize the economic and geographical barriers to our sports and in partnering with NBS know we will be better equipped to engage with minority and underrepresented communities. The mountains are a place we can find common ground, recognize our similarities and appreciate our differences. We look forward to working with NBS over the next four years, and well into the future, in creating a more inclusive winter sports community.”
– U.S. Ski & Snowboard President and CEO Tiger Shaw
To kick off the partnership U.S. Ski & Snowboard is proud to announce its title sponsorship of the NBS 2021 Virtual Black Ski Summit. Traditionally held on the slopes, the Summit is one of the largest gatherings of skiers and riders in the United States bringing together over 5,000 people from across the country. Due to COVID-19, this year’s Summit will be virtual. The primary purpose of the Summit is to fundraise to support the NBS’ Olympic Scholarship Fund, designed to provide financial support for exceptional athletes of color who excel in winter sports. Ski and snowboard fans and supporters can participate in the public online auction, live at http://auction.nbs.org through Feb. 28, 2021.
As a leader in the snowsports community domestically and abroad, U.S. Ski & Snowboard recognizes the opportunity it has in fostering, cultivating, and maintaining a culture of inclusion and diversity in the mountains. In working with NBS, U.S. Ski & Snowboard hopes to grow the visibility of winter sports in underrepresented communities, as well as increase engagement with those populations.
Over the next four years, U.S. Ski & Snowboard and NBS will work together on efforts to dismantle stereotypes and discrimination and promote racial inclusion and equity throughout the winter sports industry.