Adam joined the SSWSC staff in 2016, and promptly raised the level earning the SSWSC recognition by U.S. Ski & Snowboard as its Alpine Club of the Year in 2017 and 2018. Prior to coming to Steamboat, Adam was Alpine Program Director for the Burke Mountain Academy (Vermont), Snowsports Director at Waterville Valley (New Hampshire), and a four-year U.S. Ski Team coach where he worked with Olympic medalists Ted Ligety and Andrew Weibrecht as juniors. In 2017, Adam was asked by the Shiffrin’s to step in to help coach Mikaela during a prep period camp in Austria. A Level 500 certified coach by U.S. Ski & Snowboard, Adam was honored by both the USSA and the Vermont Alpine Racing Association as their Coach of the Year in 2010. While working in the Eastern Region of the USSA, Chadbourne was the chairman of the Eastern Development Committee, where he focused on enhancing training and competition opportunities for Eastern alpine ski racers.
Amber McHugh joins the SSWSC from her long-standing position at Burke Mountain Academy; coaching both men and women at the FIS level since 2007. Amber brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise in a number of areas. First and foremost she is a highly intelligent and knowledgeable ski racing coach, leader, and mentor. During recent years Amber worked extensively with the strength and conditioning program at Burke and has earned her strength and conditioning certifications from the NSCA and USA Weightlifting as she worked toward completing a Master’s degree in Strength and Conditioning. Amber is a Level 300 certified coach by U.S. Ski & Snowboard, earning “head of the class” honors at the 2011 Alpine National Coaches Academy.
Jake Benda comes to the SSWSC from his most recent coaching position as a FIS coach for the Snowbird Sports Education Foundation. Jake brings with him tremendous work ethic and skiing ability. Jake is an accomplished racer in his own right who has now turned his attention to the coaching world. His own philosophy on athletics aligns wonderfully with ours at SSWSC. There is little doubt that Jake brings much to this vibrant community. Jake will be the SSWSC lead men’s coach for athletes born in 2002 and 2001, while Mike Bansmer joins the leadership team as lead coach of the men’s 2000 and older group.
Thomas was born and raised in Scranton, Pennsylvania. He started skiing at the age of three, chasing his older sister around the mountain. He skied and raced at Elk Mountain in Northeastern PA where he was ranked among the best skiers in the state. During High School he attended Mount Mansfield Winter Academy in Stowe, VT where he raced both USSA and FIS. Deciding to forego racing in college, Thomas started coaching at his home hill. After five years of coaching, he was put in charge of the U16 age group and the weekly night training. He is starting his third season with the SSWSC. Thomas has a great passion for the sport and is committed to helping develop young athletes to the best of their abilities both on and off the hill. Thomas graduated from the University of Scranton with a degree in Political Science. When not on the hill, Thomas enjoys hunting, fishing, playing tennis and golfing. He is also a major fan of Notre Dame Football.
Ty attended the Whiteman School as their first ski racer. Ty started coaching at the University of Colorado in 1987 and then returned to the Winter Sports Club. He has been coaching at the FIS, Nor-Am and World Cup level and has worked with numerous NCAA champions, US Ski Teamers and Olympic racers in both alpine and telemark racing. Along the way he has picked up full certification with the PSIA in both Alpine and Telemark and the same with the US Ski Coaches Association.
In his free time, Ty volunteers with Routt County Search and Rescue and the Clark Colorado Volunteer Fire Department. The Marine Corps added some saltiness to his already intense personality and spending two years in Mesopotamia taking on bad guys did little to tone down his zest and enthusiasm for skiing. He enjoys reading, empty spaces and sea glass collecting.
Ben grew up racing in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. He continued his racing career at Western State Colorado University, competing Division 1 NCAA. After graduating college Ben continued racing full-time at the Continental Cup level in pursuit of his goals. He began ski coaching at Loveland Racing Club. After 3 years at Loveland, Ben coached 1 season for a private team, Iced-Out Racing, based out of Summit County. Most recently Ben spent 3 years coaching FIS athletes at the Green Mountain Valley School in Vermont. Ben was invited to coach in several Regional and NDS Camps, as a representative of the Eastern Region. Ben is excited to be back in Colorado coaching, and enjoying his favorite hobbies of bike racing and back-country skiing.
Michael was born and raised in Mequon, Wisconsin. He skied USSA and FIS during high school and continued to race in college at the University of Minnesota. Michael followed his passion for sports, earning a degree in sports management. After graduating, Michael moved back to Milwaukee and started his coaching career with Heiliger Huegel. Michael spent 6 years coaching U14s and also served as the assistant program director before taking the position with SSWSC. Michael is going on his 3rd year with SSWSC and just recently received his Level 300 coaching certification. Michael has a passion for working with youth athletes! When not on the hill, Michael enjoys traveling, hiking and listening to music.
Mack grew up outside of Buffalo, New York. He spent his weekends skiing at Holimont in Ellicottville, New York with his family. He joined Holimont’s freestyle team as a J5. He decided to take up ski instruction during his high school years. After a brief hiatus nordic ski racing in college, Mack returned to ski instruction at Holiday Valley in Ellicottville New York. In 2011 Mack moved to Steamboat Springs to work at Steamboat Resort as a ski instructor. The following season he joined the U12 coaching staff at SSWSC and has been here ever since. This past season Mack coached for Colorado Mountain College as well as working with the SSWSC U14’s.
Erika Hill grew up skiing for the Winter Sports Club. She raced alpine for SSWSC before telemark skiing for the United States Telemark Team on the World Cup circuit. She began assistant coaching the Buddy Werner Program with SSWSC while still competing. Erika began formally coaching with Loveland Ski Club in 2011, where she coached alpine racing and all mountain skiing. Erika is an environmental and geotechnical engineer, and loves sharing her passion for skiing and the outdoors with young athletes.
Matt Graves moved with his family to Steamboat from Denver in 1976 at the age of 5. With four winters of skiing under his belt he began with the SSWSC, he started in Training Squad, a multidisciplinary program in 1978. Since then he raced, jumped, and cross countried his way through to some national level performances. Matt has coached for well over ten years, two years now leading the U12 program. He’s also coached nordic ski jumping and cross country skiing. Matt lives with his wife Sandy and their sons Wyatt and Sawyer, both SSWSC athletes. Matt is a builder, wood sculptor, hunter, gardener and cook. Growing up in Steamboat as a Winter Sports Club athlete, coach and now parent, Matt feels a strong connection to the tradition and legacy of what happens here at Howelsen Hill.
Cassady grew up in Steamboat and was an athlete with the SSWSC for 10 years. After high school she went to Colby College where she spent 4 years on the Division I ski team. She was the captain for 3 years and qualified for the NCAA Championships twice. After graduating college, Cassady was a 2nd grade teacher in Denver. She recently moved back to the Yampa Valley and is continuing to teach elementary school at the Mountain Village Montessori School. She is so excited to be joining SSWSC again this season, now as a coach!
Melissa Jones (MJ) grew up in Holderness, NH and skied for Waterville Valley’s Black and Blue Trail Smashers in Waterville Valley, NH. Melissa graduated from Bates College in Lewiston, ME in 2008 with a degree in Environmental Science with a concentration in Chemistry. During her time at Bates, she was a member of their NCAA Division 1 Alpine Team and served as Captain her senior year. After college, she relocated to Colorado, where she coached at Ski and Snowboard Club Vail for four years before moving to Steamboat in 2014 where she has been coaching since and teaching science at the Steamboat Springs High School. Some of MJ’s favorite things include dorking out on chemistry, rock climbing, attempting to fly fish, cheering on the Red Sox and bacon.
Scott joined the Winter Sports Cub during the past season. His coaching background includes: Head Coach of Ski Club Vail, Head Coach of the USSA-CD, Coach of the Sun Valley Ski Team, Associate Coach of the USST, and most recently coaching for Buck Hill. Scott was one of the founders and original managing directors of the US Ski Coaches Association.
Scott was very fortunate to be coached and mentored by great coaches and skiers at Arapaho’s Basin and Sun Valley. He has loved skiing, racing, and coaching all his life and is very proud and happy to be with the Winter Sports Club.