Anthony De Rocco, President and CEO of K2 Sports, Inc., presented youth development charity SOS Outreach with a check for $25,000 to demonstrate K2’s support for programs that get youth from diverse demographic backgrounds outdoors.

“At K2 we have built a storied legacy of producing innovative products that put smiles on peoples’ faces while they enjoy the outdoors,” said Anthony De Rocco, president and CEO of K2 Sports. “We recognize the importance of outdoor activity and the true joy associated with skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing…simply being in the mountains.”  

De Rocco, who serves on the SOS Outreach board, referenced the unique drawing power of winter sports to turn kids into lifelong outdoor enthusiasts, and thanked SOS Outreach for their sustained efforts to get kids outdoors and diversify the world of snow sports.

“Similarly, SOS Outreach has built a legacy of its own, developing programs devoted to fostering character development and improved self-esteem in youth through a combination of outdoor activities and the SOS Outreach values-based curriculum.”

K2 and many others in the industry recognize that SOS Outreach is attracting a more diverse audience to mountain sports, an audience that the industry needs to cater to in order to sustain growth in the years ahead.

More and more industry leaders are realizing the importance of connecting with youth from varied backgrounds in order to maintain industry growth. Companies such as K2 are choosing to connect with organizations like SOS Outreach because a significant number of SOS participants become lifetime outdoor enthusiasts. Nearly one in four kids who participate in SOS Outreach programs return to their sport of choice as lifelong participants. This compares to an industry conversion rate of about 16 percent.
“At K2 Sports, one of our key initiatives is to continue to push access and awareness to as many of our winter sports as we can. Not only is this vital for the longevity and success of our industry, but as I have already articulated, we have seen firsthand the joy and personal impact that regular outdoor activity can bring.”

K2 Sports Inc., which also owns 5150 Snowboards, Morrow Snowboards, Ride Snowboards, Line, Tubbs Snowshoes, Full Tilt, Atlas Snowshoes, Planet Earth, Zoot Sports, Madshus, and Powder Ridge, has been one of SOS Outreach’s biggest supporters.

Over the past decade K2 has donated more than $250,000 in cash and in-kind donations as well as SOS office space in K2’s Seattle office. Their support helps SOS to serve nearly 5,000 youth across 15 states and, most recently, in New Zealand.

“By reaching out to today’s youth, many of whom would never have the opportunity to ski or snowboard, K2 has positioned itself as both a leader in winter sports and a leader in the community,” said Arn Menconi, SOS Outreach executive director.  “Together, we are making a difference in the lives of thousands of underserved youth because we share the philosophy that ‘doing good equates to doing well.’ 

Now in its 18th year, SOS Outreach is a leading, Colorado-based youth development non-profit that utilizes outdoor adventure sports, such as skiing and snowboarding, as the platform for a long-term, values-based leadership and character development curriculum.