Turning your passion into your profession

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Fall is a great time of year to reflect on your career goals. Camber Outdoors recently launched their new career site which connects women to careers in the outdoor industry. It’s exciting to see so many companies taking their CEO pledge to help expand women’s opportunities both in the backcountry and the boardroom. We took some time to chat with a few ladies on our SheJumps team of volunteers who also work in the outdoor industry to share more on their career paths. Looking for a new job? Check out Camber’s new platform.

Megan Davin. Salt Lake City. Utah Ambassador.

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How long you’ve been part of SheJumps? Currently, I am a Utah Ambassador, but I began with SheJumps back in 2012, and have done a little bit of everything. I began as an online-volunteer for SheJumps writing countless blogs. And I created and attended many events while serving as the Northeast Regional Coordinator. I love every aspect and am a huge supporter!

How did you first get into the outdoors? I grew up at the ocean and playing in the woods, but would have never considered myself as outdoorsy. That transitioned to going to college in Vermont where I first went camping and really got into hiking, sea kayaking, skiing, and eventually mountain biking. College was the crucial point for me that snowballed into not only a lifelong passion, but also my career.

What is your outdoor passion? My passions are mountain biking, alpine skiing, ski touring, and hiking. I’ve dabbled in a little bit of everything but my current seasonal cycles are mountain bike – hike – camp – ski all winter long! I can’t get enough of everything, so I will keep it up until I get bored, or try something new.

What is your current role and company? I am a Customer Account Manager at Backcountry, also known as an Expert Gearhead. I work with and manage a book of around 2,500 people, assisting with everything from gear advice to sales and customer service.

How did you turn your passion into your profession? Persistence. Every time someone has told me I can’t do something, it lights an extra fire under me to keep going and never give up or give in. Rather, it just gives me inspiration to get creative.

What advice do you have for other women who want to get into the Outdoor Industry? Don’t give up. Find like-minded friends, or a mentor, and have someone to talk with who understands you and wants to genuinely see you succeed.

Shari Karber. Bellingham. Washington Ambassador.

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How long you’ve been part of SheJumps? I’ve been a SheJumps Pacific Coast Ambassador in Bellingham, WA for 4 months and a SheJumps follower / attendee for 3 years.

How did you first get into the outdoors? I grew up in the country and loved getting outside, but it wasn’t until college when I stopped staring at the mountains and bought gear to start backpacking.

What is your outdoor passion? In the summer, I love backpacking and spending multiple days up in the high country. In the winter I love snowshoeing – both blend into Spring / Fall activities too!

What is your current role and company? I am a Sales Coordinator for Superfeet Worldwide, a 100% employee owned premium insole company that is best known for putting shape under your feet for every adventure through over the counter insoles and footwear. My focus is in Internet Sales and International Sales, I do everything from managing our brand image on Amazon to processing orders from all over the world. I love the variety and there is never a dull moment!

How did you turn your passion into your profession? I started wearing Superfeet insoles about 7 years ago while working in the hospitality industry; Superfeet was actually a client of mine. I knew a lot about the company, the products, the culture, the values, and eventually through the relationships I had built, along with great timing – I joined the Superfeet team!

What advice do you have for other women who want to get into the Outdoor Industry? If you want to get in the outdoor industry, my advice is to build genuine relationships, find a company that’s values reflect your own, and simply GO FOR IT! If you’re a good fit and you live and breathe the company’s core values, you will get the job in a heartbeat!

Steph Bennett. Winthrop. Washington Ambassador.

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How long have you been part of SheJumps? I’ve been a Pacific Northwest Ambassador for 2 months, and have been a SheJumps advocate for 4+ years.

How did you first get into the outdoors? I totally lucked out growing up. We have a family cabin in the Adirondacks, where we were always out canoeing, hiking, swimming, fishing, building trails, and exploring.

What is your outdoor passion? Winters are spent splitboarding, and all other moments are spent either trail running or plotting my next adventure.

What is your current role and company? My current role is working for a small apparel/outerwear start-up called MtnLogic, which requires wearing multiple hats. My technical title is Supply Chain & Planning Director, but one day I may be working as a sales manager and the next climbing Rainier for a marketing shoot.

How did you turn your passion into your profession? I remember sitting in class during college and writing a list of all of the companies I wanted to work for when I graduated. I would go online every day and scour the job pages at Burton, K2, Kelty, Columbia, Patagonia, The North Face, etc. I realized early on that it was incredibly important for me to work for a company that made products that I use to get outside, explore and make me smile. Right after graduating, I took an unpaid internship with Burton Snowboards, and the rest is history.

What advice do you have for other women who want to get into the Outdoor Industry? Network, network, network. If there is a company you want to work for, reach out to their HR department and see if you can talk to someone about what it’s like to work there. Then, if you happen to see a job posted at that company in the future, you already have a connection when you submit your resume.

Mallory Ottariano. Missoula. Montana Regional Coordinator.

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How long have you been part of SheJumps? I’ve been the Montana Regional Coordinator for just over a year and first got  involved with SheJumps when I attended Alpine Finishing School in 2015.

How did you first get into the outdoors? I grew up in New England, which is so rich with wonderful places to recreate, and my family is really active in the outdoors. Being outside has been a part of my my identity since before I can remember, and my best memories of childhood have to do with the incredible outdoor activities my family exposed me to.

What is your outdoor passion? Anything that gets me outside and moving my body! I love ski touring, mountain biking, and hiking, but this year I took up some new activities too – trail running and skate skiing. Even a gentle walk with my dog after work is at the top of my list.

What is your current role and company? In 2015 I founded Kind Apparel, a women’s adventure clothing company. It’s a small operation and I’m responsible for a lot of tasks. We do all our designing and production in our studio in Montana, so a lot of my time is spent behind a sewing machine. But product testing is always a good time. We make all sorts of apparel for active women: skorts, swimwear, dresses, and ski headwear; and all our fabrics are made from recycled materials. I create all the graphics for our fabric, so we’re kind to the planet, and one-of-a-kind.

How did you turn your passion into your profession? I studied design in college and have been a lifelong artist, so when I graduated I started selling some of my work on Etsy. After a few years of growing online, I branded my work a bit differently and started making things that really complimented my active, outdoor lifestyle.

What advice do you have for other women who want to get into the Outdoor Industry? First of all, I think this is an amazing time for women to get involved in the outdoor industry. We’re getting more representation than ever and it’s leading to big changes. However, authenticity is key. With so many people trying to be seen and heard in this industry, it’s important that your voice shines through unmasked. Pursue endeavors that you truly identify with and your passion will be channeled into success.