Growing up in a farming community in southeast Idaho, I took for granted the beauty of nature and the stewardship required of us to build lives while maintaining the health and vitality of the land.
Summers were spent cycling through Yellowstone, backpacking in the Tetons, camping in the river bottoms along the Snake River as well as working on the local farms moving irrigation pipe in grain and potato fields. Fall gave us opportunities to rock climb the granite faces in the foothills that were now accessible after the leaves had dropped and the chance to work bringing in the harvest as temporary labor for the local farmers that provided money for skiing, dates and gear for the next season. With winter came ski swaps and Warren Miller films and days of untracked powder as we cross country skied in Harriman State Park and explored out of bounds tree runs at Grand Targhee Spring started the cycle all over again with opportunities to both work and play in the great outdoors.
Now, as an adult, I have appreciated the growing trend of stewardship and sustainability in business. Seeing companies and entire industries question their impact on the planet and their roles in changing their practices in order to make a positive difference if possible has been heartening. While there is still much more we can do, the community is growing. The movement is gaining momentum. The lights are being turned on exposing the good and the bad of our actions.
This past summer I returned to one of my favorite spots on the Snake River for a couple of days to relax and fool some native trout with my poorly presented flies. The daily score clearly showed the trout winning the contest, but I finished each day feeling renewed and reconnected. At the base of one of my favorite spots there was a makeshift fire-pit and campground littered with discarded cans, debris and tires. I did return later that trip with bags and an ATV to clean it up, but seeing the disregard for the sacred nature of the river marred an otherwise wonderful trip.
Daily we all make choices both big and small that leave marks on the world. Learning about TREDAGAIN and the opportunity to put my working hours into a business with a mission was too good to pass up. As one of my heroes in business used to say; "doing well and doing good are inextricably linked" I am sincerely grateful to be a part of just that. Everyone should have the opportunity to both build a life and be a wise steward of this great planet.
Jared Oviatt General Manager TREDAGAIN Footwear
If you’re just starting out on your sustainability journey and are looking for resources to learn more about our planet and what’s helping/harming it, we’re here to help!
Below are three starting points: a book, a TED talk, and a documentary on Netflix. Each touches on a different portion of our environment and world, and helps us understand how small sustainable choices can leave a major impact.
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