This November, one of the world’s greatest survivalists Robert Swan, along with his son Barney will journey 600 miles to the South Pole, powered entirely on renewable energy. They will be the first people in history to attempt such an incredible feat. Robert is a polar explorer, a leader in energy innovation and founder of the 2041 Foundation. His story of unbelievable spirit takes us on a journey of inspiration, courage and humility. The message of Robert and Barney’s mission is that if they can survive in the most inhospitable place on earth only on renewable energy, then we as a species can do it everywhere. Over the course of his life, Robert has drawn inspiration from history’s greatest explorers to achieve the impossible. He shares a vision for how the adventure industry might unite, help build personal leadership skills among travelers and create massive action to protect planet Earth.
Adventure travel exists today because of motivated leaders in our industry: those we work with today and those who have come before us. As we look to the challenges and opportunities our community must address in the coming years, it is clear that the leaders we cultivate now will tackle important work of community development and nature and wildlife conservation begun in this era. Today’s leaders, therefore, must be courageous and intentional: empowering and promoting qualified women, mentoring and investing in youth and measuring meaningful indicators of success.
To guide us in this pursuit, we will hear from an exemplary leader from adventure’s sister industry, the outdoor gear and apparel industry: Sally McCoy. As the former CEO of Camelbak and Sierra Designs, VP of Product and Marketing at The North Face, and founding member of The Conservation Alliance and Camber Outdoors (formerly the Outdoor Industries Women’s Coalition), Ms. McCoy has been referred to as a “brilliant fixer and grower of companies”. Her no-nonsense, authentic and compassionate approach to leadership has enabled her to deliver impressive financial gains in the companies she has led as well as establish the sort of workplace cultures that breed leaders capable of guiding these companies successfully into the future.
Human lives are inextricably linked with biodiversity and its protection is essential for our survival. Already, more than 350 million people worldwide suffer from severe water scarcity. And tragically, many biologists believe one-half of Earth’s animals will be extinct by 2100. While scientists and activists have spent recent decades publicizing this, attention must now also expand beyond simple awareness building to scaling and replicating successful approaches to nature and biodiversity protection. Adventure companies find themselves at the intersection of conservation and business, and must start thinking not only about best practices and partners for advancing conservation initiatives, but also how to use to their platform with an increasing number of global tourists to build awareness and inspire action. In this session hear from conservation leaders applying creative approaches to mobilize and scale conservation.
Our bodies were created with an immense desire to experience the world around us. We are one giant ecosystem of senses living in a universe based on reciprocity. We experience personally and socially, internally and outerly, consciously and unconsciously, willingly and unwillingly. While we live in a world saturated and engineered for distractions, our responsibility is to carefully orchestrate opportunities for others to experience the world in a new way; to slightly push their boundaries and help them see the beauty in the unexpected and unfamiliar. In the midst of an exhilarating and energetic Summit, this meditative pause offers a path for us to see the world with a new perspective using nature as a mentor, a mindset and an incredible source of profound experiences.