La Malbaie, Quebec–Chip Carey, vice president of marketing and sales for The Canyons, Utah, received the Bob Gillen Memorial Award for 2003, presented by the North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA). The Bob Gillen Memorial Award honors an individual corporate member of the association who exemplifies the highest standards of professionalism in public relations and communications and understands the working relationship between the information specialist and the journalist.
Carey spent 25 years at Sugarloaf/USA, in Carrabassett Valley, Maine, before transferring with the American Ski Company to The Canyons, Park City, Utah. An early adopter of new technologies to get his message out to the media from the mountains, in the ’70s and ’80s, he was at the forefront of fax and computer database technology. At one point, he actually hot-wired a photo transmitter to a telephone pole so he could transmit ski race photos to the AP Wires. He started WSKI TV, a closed-circuit cable TV station. Carey also was a pioneer for ski resort Web sites, introducing people to the World Wide Web, in it’s earliest stages, at the Boston Ski Show, and using it to promote ski conditions and other resort information.
Carey also started the Sugarloaf/Reggae Fest in 1992. The event started out as just a band on the deck with a few hundred people, but it has grown to be the biggest spring ski party in the East, now attracting as many as 11,000 people.
Carey has masterminded some very memorable special events for publicity over the years at Sugarloaf and The Canyons, from the World Heavy Championships and the Virgin Atlantic Balloon crossing at Sugarloaf to having The Canyons be the host for 18 days of NBC’s Today Show during the 2002 Olympics.
The North American Snowsports Journalists Association is the only professional organization for snow sports writers, photographers, broadcasters and electronic media representatives from throughout the United States and Canada. For more information, visit www.nasja.org.