PRESIDENT / OWNER
Gunther Jochl, a native of Austria, begins his 47th year at the helm of Sugar Mountain Resort. Mr. Jochl, who believes in a “hands-on” approach to managing, has actively been involved in all aspects of the ski industry. His constant pursuit of perfection is a result of his intense love and passion for the sport of skiing and the outdoors. It is the foundation of the company’s culture. Mr. Jochl is an excellent skier and competes regularly in Sugar Mountain ski events.
In 2019 Mr. Jochl received the Order of the Long Leaf Pine, an honor granted by the State of North Carolina to individuals who have shown extraordinary service to the state. It is the highest award for state service granted by the Office of the Governor.
VICE-PRESIDENT / DIRECTOR OF MARKETING AND MERCHANDISING
Kimberley Jochl, a former nine-year member of the United States Alpine Ski Team (1984-1993), brings unique experiences and diverse knowledge to Sugar. In the spring of 1993 she joined the Sugar Mountain Resort team as the special events director and in 2001 was promoted to director of marketing. In 2005 Mrs. Jochl took over the management of the Sports Shop and in 2014 she was named vice president. As Sugar Mountain Resort’s brand steward, she leads advertising, branding, event management, media relations and direct marketing across print, digital and social platforms. firstname.lastname@example.org. Press information can be found at www.skisugar.com/press-releases.
DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS
Andrew Jochl, born and raised in the High Country, grew up on Sugar Mountain wishing he could skip school to go to work with his dad or to tinker with his homemade snow machine. He spent many summers and Christmas breaks learning the ins and outs of the Sugar Mountain operation. Andrew spent one year working at Doppelmayr located in Wolfurt, Austria and nine years as a design and test engineer at Kassbohrer in Laupheim, Germany. He enjoys racing in local ski events and cruising the slopes on his snowboard. In the fall of 2015 Andrew became Sugar Mountain Resort’s Director of Operations. He is responsible for the overall management and execution of the resort’s operations.
SKI AREA AND RESORT MANAGER
Erich Schmidinger grew up in western Massachusetts where he learned to ski in the Berkshire Hills. After ski racing nationally and internationally Erich took a position in 1995 at Sugar Mountain Resort as the ski club director. In 1998 he filled the much-needed position as night manager. He continues to supervise, manage, and execute the ski area’s complex operations. Wherever Erich is needed, you’ll find him. email@example.com
SKI/SNOWBOARD SCHOOL DIRECTOR
Len Bauer’s teaching experience ranges from New England to the Southeast and spans 43 years. Even though this is his 32nd year as ski/snowboard school director at Sugar, he has been teaching at Sugar for 36 years and has served the ski/snowboard school as a supervisor and as race coach. Mr. Bauer is a fully certified level 3 PSIA instructor.
DIRECTOR OF GROUP SALES
Tristan Bowen, originally from Shelby, North Carolina, spent five years in the Marine Corps serving as an intelligence analyst at Camp Lejeune. He retired as a Sergeant (E-5) in 2019. Shortly thereafter, in early 2020 while attending Appalachian State University, Tristan began working at Sugar Mountain Ski Resort as a cashier/auditor. In 2023 he was promoted to director of group sales. Tristan welcomes groups from all over the Southeast and intends to make group outings to Sugar Mountain Resort seamless and wonderfully memorable. In his free time, he enjoys spending time hiking and snowboarding. firstname.lastname@example.org
SKI AND SNOWBOARD PATROL DIRECTOR
Robin Griffith began volunteering as a ski patroller at Sugar Mountain Resort in 1980. She is a member of the National Ski Patrol (NSP) and is trained in Outdoor Emergency Care (OEC). Robin served on the NSP national finance and endowment committees from 2011-2016. She is an OEC instructor, OET instructor, an IT for OEC courses, and has been an Instructor Development instructor. In 2020 Robin became Sugar’s volunteer patrol leader. In 2023 she took on the leadership role of both the volunteer and paid patrol staffs. In her free time, Robin enjoys playing golf and mountaineering on the world’s highest peaks, summiting Kilimanjaro, Denali, Aconcagua, and a few others.
CLOTHING & EQUIPMENT RENTAL AND REPAIR MANAGER
After football or basketball practice at nearby Mitchell High School, Justin Silver and his buddies used to tear up the slopes on Sugar Mountain. Thirteen years later, including six years of service as a military policeman in the Army, Justin found himself back at Sugar Mountain Resort. This time as the building maintenance manager. In 2022 he was promoted to clothing & equipment rental and repair shop manager. Mr. Silver absolutely loves his job. He always has a smile on his face and an outgoing and optimistic disposition. He enjoys biking, fly fishing, skiing, and anything outdoors with his little girls.
RETAIL MERCHANDISE MANAGER
Mike Thomas grew up in East Tennessee. He has over 30 years of experience in the ski and snowboard industry. In 2020 Mike joined the Sugar Mountain Resort team. He strives for excellence in every detail and his sociable personality is sure to make each customer happy and satisfied. Mike loves being outdoors with his wife and two daughters, skiing, biking, hiking, camping, or just lounging. Stop by the shop and say hello. He’ll talk your ear off. email@example.com
IT MANAGER & AUDITOR/CASHIER SUPERVISOR
Florian Kasper, born and raised in the Austrian Alps, loves the mountains, especially when it comes to hiking. That is why he felt right at home when he moved to Avery County and began working at Sugar Mountain Resort in 2017. Florian has over 20 years of IT experience beginning with Tyrolean Airways, Austrian Airlines, and Thoeni Industriebetriebe. Mr. Kasper is responsible for all things IT, graphic & website design, ticket sales, supervising auditors & cashiers, and everything in between. firstname.lastname@example.org