Andy Wirth has dedicated his professional life to the world of skiing. He is the CEO of Squaw Valley, an iconic ski resort near Lake Tahoe, California. Squaw Valley began operations in 1949 and was made famous by hosting the 1960 Winter Olympics. They have been in business since the day of the wooden ski and have witnessed the advances in ski equipment and the methods of taking skiers up to the top of the mountain.
In a recent interview conducted by Powder Magazine, Wirth, CEO of Squaw Valley, discussed the proposed gondola that would connect Squaw Valley with Alpine Meadows. This concept of creating mega-size ski resorts has been popular in Europe and is now gaining a foothold with ski resorts in the West.
It is a seemingly simple concept but with ramifications and consequences of great magnitude. In the United States ski resorts provide employment to thousands of persons in the tourist industry. Those in this industry firmly and universally want expansion, which offers more jobs, advancements and opportunities in the tourism industry.
Andy Wirth is the right person to have in the middle of this project. Born in Germany to a family having strong skiing and environmental interests, he has studied and worked extensively in the ski resort industry. He understands the balance which is necessary to accommodate both sides in this never ending struggle between these two very divergent forces.