Updated: Jan 19
Outside by Design is back this week with Kenzie Rodriguez, head of marketing at Outdoor Prolink. Kenzie talks about her activism, balancing her analytical and creative sides, and getting job offers at ski movies. Comment below with your feedback and let us know who you think we should interview next!
Follow Kenzie: @kung.fu.kenzie
Lisa: Alright, alright, alright. Thank you so much for being here today. It's your host, Lisa Slagle, for Outside by Design and I own a creative agency called Wheelie Creative. Most people just call it Wheelie, but we're a new school creative agency for people who thrive outside. And that's kind of my deal and why I host this podcast because I get to talk to so many awesome humans that I meet throughout the outdoor industry.
Today, I'm talking to Kenzie Rodriguez. She is the head of marketing for Outdoor Prolink. Kenzie just moved to Whitefish and I had the privilege the first time I met her, we went paddleboarding together and I severely messed up her ratchet straps. We were trying to put paddle boards back on her car. But we got it figured out. Kenzie's amazing. She is smart and thoughtful and analytical and creative so I think you guys will really enjoy listening to her speak about her background, what it's like to be the only Puerto Rican in Whitefish, and she talks a lot about the work she did with the Denver women's March that went to DC. So it's exciting and she's got a lot of energy, Kenzie is just an awesome person. So please enjoy the podcast.
Lisa: So Kenzie. Thank you so much for being here today.
Kenzie: Thanks for having me. I'm really excited.
Lisa: So the first question is always to tell us where you are at right now.
Kenzie: So I am sitting in my home office in Whitefish, Montana just down the street from you.
Lisa: I'm sitting at my house in the woods just beyond down the street from you as well. Yeah, so tell us a little bit about yourself and your story and how you ended up being born and now suddenly all these years later here you are in Whitefish, Montana. What happened in between?
Kenzie: Wow, that's a long story. I'll fast-forward a little bit through some of the boring stuff like the nerdy high school years, you don't need to hear about that. Well, I was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, a city girl. I actually grew up there. I went to college at Pitt. And you know, I tried to get outside as much as I could as a kid. I was really lucky, my next door neighbor, who was my best friend, she was the same age as me. Her dad was super gnarly like amazing skier. Heli skier. So fit, triathlete, did all you know, everything in between and my parents weren't so much into skiing in the outdoors, but he was really the one that kind of fostered that love in me and, you know, influenced my parents to get after it and to get me out there and my brother as well. So he is really the one that kind of got me into skiing and got me into water sports. We were on the lake a lot. So lots of wakeboarding and waterskiing and stuff like that. So I was really into that stuff.
But mostly I was a cross country runner. That was really my sport and I really thought I wanted to be in pre-med which was great. It's crazy now to think back in it, but I went to Pitt I originally started majoring in pre-med and all my outdoor sports stuff was kind of on the back burner because I was living in the city, bartending, just like trying to hustle. And then two years into my pre-med degree I kind of had this like moment where I was like, wait a second. I pretty much have two options here. I'm either going to work in a lab forever. And I really like clothes so I can't see myself in a lab coat everyday. Or I'm gonna have to go to med school and be a doctor and I was kind of looking at those two paths and was like, I don't want to do either of those like at all.
And I had always kind of thought of myself as a really analytical left brain, math/science kind of person, but I was like, okay this isn't going to work. So I need to figure out how I can graduate in two years because I was now two years into my degree. And so I looked at all the curriculum and it was like, okay, marketing and business. This is the thing that I can finish in two years. So I'm doing that. So that was like, literally how I got into where I am today or at least initially. And kind of like, finished it up in school thought it was really easy and kind of interesting but I wasn't really sure what I wanted to do with my life. And then right when I graduated my mom was like “hey, a friend of mine has this internship in Fort Collins, Colorado.” I was like where the heck is that? So I Googled it and it was like 300 days of sunshine a year and coming from Pittsburgh where it rains like more than Seattle, I was like, okay I'm in! And that was a internship at a pharmaceutical company which, I hated it. I hated it so much, but it was really valuable because I kind of got thrown into package design and product marketing which I had never tried. And I really enjoyed it. But the problem was that because it was Pharma it was so regulated so literally like any change we made, I had to walk from office to office and get like 12 signatures to QA that every change was okay. So there is no room for creativity, right, it was do the best you can in the first shot and try to get it approved and then get it out the door.
So through a couple friends I heard about this job in a software company in Boulder. So I was like, yeah Boulder sounds cool. Anything's better than Pharma. I'll try that. And that was really just made a huge network of people that is really what got me into outdoor. So I was obviously skiing a ton, hiking a ton, mountain biking, like, you name it. I just loved living in Boulder and everybody kind of knew that about me because that was the way that I made connections with people. So after working, you know, kind of skipping through a couple other jobs where I really got into marketing and design and digital marketing and all that jazz. I was at a ski movie. I think it was the SheJumps movie. I think it was Pretty Faces. So I was like totally stoked because that was the first all women's ski film I had ever been to, I don't know about you.
Lisa: Heck yeah.
Kenzie: So I was like, you know, I was with Clem who's my husband, and we're watching this movie with a bunch of our friends. And you know, ski movies are the shit, you know, like you're drinking you're having a great time, it's all your best friends. And I get this text message and it's from the CTO at one of the software development companies I had worked at and he was like “Hey, I'm working at this company called Outdoor Prolink. We're super small. We need a marketing person. But essentially it's an outdoor industry company. Are you interested?” And I was like, oh my god, like, you know, just the fact that I was at this ski movie and kind of already thinking like what the hell am I doing with my life? I'm working in advertising. I hate it.
So I texted him back and said yeah, I'm super interested, like, tell me what hoops to jump through and I'll jump. And then yeah, just meeting with Gareth who's the CEO of Outdoor Prolink, him and I had met for a coffee date and I basically was like listen, I live the outdoors lifestyle. It's every passion that I have. It's my love. It's how I spend all my time. I have a ton of marketing and design experience but I don't have any outdoor experience, like, just trust me. And him and I bonded instantly, he's a really, really cool guy. And yeah, and that's how I started at Outdoor Prolink and I've been there for almost two years now. I wear pretty much every single marketing and design hat. I was the only person on the team for a long time. I recently just hired someone underneath me, but it's been like, hands down, the funnest thing I've ever done.
And it was a huge relief to me to to finally like... because I've always been really passionate about work. I'm one of those people that like, it's never good enough. I always push really hard on myself and the people around me, my expectations are really high and it was hard to maintain that at a job I just didn't care about you know, like I would kind of push myself all day and then get home and be like, why does it even matter? Like why am I stressing out about this? I'm literally putting digital display ads on breitbart.com. Like that was my job for a while. And that was actually right during the election to so I was totally having this crisis of like. Oh my God, I'm working for the devil. Like I'm literally making money off of Steve Bannon. I gotta get out of here. This isn't me. So it was so like such a breath of fresh air and such a weight off my chest to be able to hustle hard at work and then go home and not really be exhausted by it just because I was so fired up about what I'm doing and the people that I work with. Yeah, it's been it's been a dream. I'm super stoked where I am now, but it was a long road of shitty jobs and lots of cubicles to get here.
Lisa: Yeah, and now you get to work remotely.
Kenzie: Yeah, I so my husband and I, we're skiers. That's our big passion and you know living in Boulder affords a lot of opportunities to ski and it's a really awesome place. I love Boulder and I miss it and a lot of ways but it was such a slog. I mean every Friday we were literally packing the car, packing the camper, driving multiple hours to ski and then getting home late on Sunday night to work and we're like something about this is isn’t right? You know, like if we're leaving the place where we live every single weekend to do what we love, like, let's move closer to what we love. So one day I just sprung it on Gareth, my boss, that Clem had received a job offer in Whitefish and he was like, you know, I'm gonna think about it over the weekend, but let's make this work. Which was just crazy for me. Just the fact that he was so supportive, but he was a mountaineer. He was a total Dirtbag forever and I think that he just understands that passion and that drive and was like, don't you know I want you to have that too. So I'm really lucky to have a boss like that.
Lisa: That's super cool.
Kenzie: Yeah and Whitefish is a dream. I mean, it's awful here. Don't come here. All the locals are like stop telling your friends it's awesome! I’m like, I know, but I just want to share with everyone.
Lisa: It's really fun. I can't wait to go skiing with you.
Kenzie: Yay. I know. I actually I've been dreaming about skiing recently because it's been so hot and it's like that's not really how it's supposed to go. It's crazy too because I'm Puerto Rican so I should love summer, but but after like a month and a half, I'm like, okay. Hurry this up. Time for snow.
Lisa: So now let's kick it over to some commercials.
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Lisa: So what like what do you do? What does Outdoor Prolink do for those people listening that don't know and what do you do to help them do what they do?
Kenzie: So Outdoor Prolink is a pro deal site. So anybody that works in the outdoor industry whether it's someone like me, like a marketing person at an outdoor brand or a mountaineer that's out leading Expeditions on K2 or a paddle guide for a service, pretty much anyone who makes their living in the outdoor industry. We help them get discounts on the gear that they use for work and play. So the idea is that we are the best form of marketing because we are experienced in what we do. We’re out there getting after it and we have a lot of reach in the field and online. So not just like posting on Instagram, oh, check out this or jacket that I'm wearing, but you're actually talking with people and making interactions. And these people are looking up to you for your advice and your expertise about the outdoor industry. So we feel that most of the outdoor industry I think is on board with this, that people like that deserve a discount on that gear because they're helping helping the brand sell it and they really are ambassadors for the brand at that point. It's kind of cool because the outdoor industry really was one of the first to market with this whole idea of influencer marketing, you know, like Pro forms have been around since the 90s. Before, you know, Instagram and Facebook and all the things we think about with influencer marketing now, so it's really cool that the outdoor industry kind of led the charge. People are sometimes mostly more effective than an ad on, you know, online or whatever. It's the recommendations and the connections you have with people in your life that really influence your purchasing decisions, your style, the gear you use, etc.
So that said we have about a hundred brands like Osprey, Dynafit, DPS La Sportiva, all kinds of different outdoor gear brands and we sell gear at discounts to Pros. So if you are a pro, you should sign up. It's free and you can get a bunch of awesome gear. But I basically work with all a hundred of our brands to kind of inform a marketing strategy that's targeted directly to Pros. So I'm kind of like an account manager. And then I also do all of our graphic design. I also do all of our customer acquisition. So all our advertising emails. I do a lot of our UI design for the site. Yeah, I wear a lot of hats but I love it that way. I get super bored when I'm like pigeon-holed in one one project.
Lisa: That's really cool because earlier you described yourself as having an analytical brain and look at you go being super creative all the time.
Kenzie: Yeah, that was kind of a trippy thing for me. Probably just in the last few years. I actually had this review, like an employee review at one of my old companies. My boss described me, like, one of the words that she used to describe me was creative. And I had never really thought of myself in that light because I had always been taught that you're like, sciency or artsy, you know, and I think for people that are kind of in between like me marketing is actually a really awesome place to go. Because a lot of it is really analytical, there's a lot of reporting, there's a lot of strategy but there's also really creative elements of it like coming up with a marketing campaign. Even if you're not directly, like, designing a graphic. It's still a really creative art. So it's been fun for me to spread my wings and honestly, like, I really had no choice but to get into graphic design Because unless you're working at like Black Diamond with million dollar marketing budgets, you're not going to have a whole team of designers for every campaign you do, right? Like, I am the person at Outdoor Prolink and if something is getting designed it's by me so it's got to be... you know, I’ve got to like do the YouTube tutorials and figure out how the fuck to work Photoshop and that's been fun.
Lisa: And then as soon as you get it dialed, they'll update the version and it'll be totally different.
Kenzie: Story of my life. Yeah. Now everybody's using like Sketch or whatever and I was like, son of a bitch. I just learned how to use Photoshop. I'm gonna ignore this.
Lisa: Yeah. Exactly how it goes.
Kenzie: Yeah, I'm sure you understand. Oh, yeah same with marketing too it's like, you know, in school I learned like how to plan an event, how to do a press release, and then literally, you know, I graduated in 2010 so, two years out of school it was like Google AdWords, Facebook advertising, like stuff that I didn't learn in school at all. Which hopefully they're teaching kids that in marketing degrees now, but that stuff is always changing too. It's refreshing though. I would want to die if I was still like writing press releases and that kind of stuff.
Lisa: It is a much more fun landscape now.
Kenzie: For sure.
Lisa: Yeah. So a lot of our listeners are marketing managers and creatives and they work in editorial... a lot of people who work in magazines listen to this podcast. And so I'm curious, like, what's your advice to someone in those positions to help create a more inclusive outdoor industry or more realistic or is there anything that like gets to you about the way the outdoor industry is portrayed? And how can people kind of change that and your opinion?
Kenzie: Oh man. That's such a good question. I think about this so much. I'm kind of obsessed with I mean, I'm definitely a feminist but it just in every way I think a lot about diversity and inclusion in my day-to-day life, you know. Moving from somewhere that's diverse as Pittsburgh and going to a super diverse school in the Inner City at University of Pittsburgh to Boulder which is about a thousand Shades whiter to Whitefish, which is like, you know, there's one Asian person in town. I'm the only Puerto Rican person and you know, like that has definitely made me think a lot about this stuff. I think that one of the things that bugs me about, especially gender inclusion in the outdoor industry, is this kind of like all-or-none approach to media, so. Like I was just talking about with Pretty Faces. It's a ski movie and it's all women. And that is so awesome. Or you see ski movies that are like a hundred percent men, maybe sometimes like Angel Collinson will be in there for like one sick line in Alaska and that's it.
And I don't know about you, but that has not been my experience at all. Not just in skiing or an outdoor sports, but in the industry in general, like I've noticed it in my company's almost 50/50. A lot of the activities that I do it's like me and a few of my girlfriend's and a bunch of guys, like it's so much more intermingled than that. And I think that's what makes it a lot more fun. And so the idea, like, I think Outside Magazine for a while tried to do like an all-women's specific section or magazine or I don't even know what to call it.
Kenzie: Which is great because they're trying to serve us, but I don't think that it needs to be... I don't think it should be separate but equal, you know. Like literally that doesn't work. And what I've noticed in my job is that when it's a mix of people we always come up with the best ideas and I don't know, maybe that's not really advice on how to do it. That's just kind of like my crazy ramblings. But what I would say is that the best impact you can have in your own business life to help bring up others around you is to create space for people. If you're you know, it doesn't have to be like another woman or someone of a person of color or just people whose voices are marginalized within your own office. Just creating opportunities for those people to speak up and be heard is the very very first step. You know if you're in a meeting and there's there's a couple voices dominating like, just being the person to take a minute and say “hey, Jess, what do you think” like, you know just because they're not standing up and speaking up in that moment, giving that person permission and a platform to do so makes a really big difference. So that's kind of the thing that I've been trying to do in my... in my own kind of day-to-day.
Lisa: that's cool. I like that.
Kenzie: I think it's really overwhelming to try and fix everything. Like I know you had my friend Sally from Camber on the podcast and she's incredible. And I think what they're doing is so necessary and amazing and I think just like, you know connecting with organizations like Camber and being aware of what they’re pushing for in the industry and being supportive of what they're doing is really important. I think we need more of that too.
Lisa: Absolutely, absolutely I have qualms with Instagram a little bit even, though like so much of what we do for a living at Wheelie is based upon getting interesting photo shoots and videos and creating content and sometimes I just think it's a little too much when people are like dragging ceramic bathtubs up mountains. Just to get a shot in front of a waterfall. Like, it just makes me want to throw my phone because it's just it's just the bastardization of wild places. It drives me insane.
Kenzie: Yeah, and it's not real. It's not authentic. I mean, the whole idea of Instagram was that it was like a way to show a day in the life. And it seems like it's come so far from that. I don't know. I struggle with it too. I struggle with it too. And I think like, you know, even with Instagram, even with outdoor media, I think what I want to see is more of the real stuff. Like more of the missed attempts, more of the slams, more of the crashes more of the… we have to turn around for the weather or whatever it is. Like it's really easy to look at Instagram and feel like an inferior athlete or just like, oh man, I work at a desk. What am I doing with my life? Because you see all of this perfection out there. And a lot of times I have to talk myself down from the ledge a little bit like Kenzie, you live in Whitefish, Montana, you work in the outdoor industry, love your job like you're doing great, you know. And even if you only get to get after it once a week, it doesn't mean that like you're not as hardcore. You're not as committed or whatever those other words might be. I think Instagram it's a constant battle against the comparison and the “oh man, I'm less than or better than,” whatever.
Lisa: Yes, so yesterday I came across an article that I found fascinating and it was all about how if you were an honor student and you got straight A's all the time which I definitely did, that that mindset like murders your soul as you go into your into your career. Because that's not how real life works, like you work really hard and then you get an A and someone says great job, here's your A. No one gives feedback like that in real life and then it leads to a lot of dissatisfaction and you feel like you're never doing enough. And I think like for me that that like I got to get A’s like that 4.0 mindset transferred directly into my snowboarding and you know, I was like, I have to be the hardest charging and the best I have to hit this line the biggest. You know, I think that I would take that energy of like doing it perfectly.
Kenzie: Yeah, oh my gosh. I was the same, same student and I think too, like, with the corporate ladder this idea that it is a ladder and there's always like one rung above it is total BS, you know, like you're not going to just constantly get promoted and a new title, you know, every year every two years until you die. You know, like and a lot of times the lateral moves are the most important and the most influential in your career. I don't know. Yeah, I definitely get stuck in that too. And it's like if you're really into that pat on the back and then at some point you're your own boss and nobody's patting you on the back. It's it's a really weird transition.
Lisa: It really is and then having employees... like I see that in so many of my really high achieving employees as well where I'm just like. It's cool, like we can we can you know explore different ways of doing things and make mistakes and it doesn't have to be perfect. Like I see that and at the other end and I'm like, oh my gosh, how can I let him know? Like let them know that they're killing it even if it doesn't work out the way they wanted.
Lisa: Especially because creativity, you never know. You know, if you're working on something new or you're working on a design or you're working on a marketing strategy like there's no guarantees.
Kenzie: Right, and your level of perfection is completely subjective. Like there's no objective perfection in the creative arts.
Kenzie: So if you are a perfectionist, it can be really hard to like reconcile that.
Lisa: Yeah, pretty interesting, huh?
Kenzie: Yeah for sure.
Lisa: And now time for another commercial break.
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Lisa: So I know you did a little bit with the Women's March in Denver before you moved up to Whitefish, will you tell us about that?
Kenzie: Yeah, man. That was that's been a crazy crazy just part of my life, but during the during the election or you know before the election, you know, all of 2016 I was in turmoil, just over, you know watching kind of what was going on with politics. The night of the election or the day of the election, me and my brother and my husband and some of my friends were like, oh Hillary Clinton's totally got this in the bag. Like, I wore this shirt that I have that's Sam Jones and like a bunch of different colored power suits from Sex in the City and was like this is my girl power shirt, you know, I was like totally we got this. And my brother, who is also in videography. He took this stupid video of like me with like a fan in my hair my hair like flowing and a Beyoncé song in the background like, “Girls we run this mother,” you know that... and I was like gonna post it on Instagram when Hillary Clinton won the presidency because she was the first female president you know, I was just like so tunnel vision. And that didn't happen and so the next day or maybe later that night I was you know, like all of the like bleeding-heart liberals out there was like up all night crying and like watching the news coverage like no this can't be. And I kind of pulled myself up by my bootstraps a little bit and I was like, I'm just gonna post this video anyway and say like, you know, we got this this isn't the end, you know, one day there will be a female president. Not that I was like the hugest Hillary Clinton fan in the world, but I just felt like that was a milestone. Like that's something that I want to see in my life. And you know, like if you can see it you can be it like that's the best example, the highest glass ceiling yada yada.
So I posted that and my friend from California called me. Her name is Danny. She's amazing and was like Kenzie, shit's happening. There's gonna be a March in DC. We need a person from every state in the U.S. to organize for their state. Will you do it? Like I just saw this video. I know you're passionate about this. I know that you know, you're passionate about this stuff from years before and will you do it? And I was like, sure. I can make a Facebook event page and you know, I had no idea what I was signing up for at all, you know. So I put this little Facebook page together that said, you know. At the time it was called the Million Women's March which they changed the name to the Women's March because that's appropriating the Million Man March, which was a civil huge Civil Rights march in DC. There was a bunch of drama around that. But I started the page and literally within an hour there was thousands of likes on the page. I was getting 50 Facebook messages a minute of women being like, I want to help do you need a co-organiser? Do you need volunteers? I'm in marketing. I'm I'm a nurse. I can be like the medical staff... like it was insane. I was completely like oh shit, like I have a full-time job. I don't know if I can do this. But at the same time like this is the coolest thing I have ever seen.
So I ended up working with a couple other women Wendy D’Olivio, Heather Toth and Tanisha Beauford who helped me organize the group of women from Colorado that went to DC. So we ended up bringing between three and five thousand women from Colorado to the DC March. We're not totally sure the number because a lot of it was on Facebook, but a lot of it was not. And so from November to January 25th I think was the March, the day after the inauguration, was just like radio interviews, fundraisers like Sign Making events. Just something every single night. It was so overwhelming and exhausting but it was definitely like, I'm so grateful that I just randomly happened to post that video at that time and I got to be involved as much as I was. Because it was the coolest thing I've ever done. I was on like, we did a conference call with Bernice King who is Martin Luther King Junior's daughter. I just got to like sort of rub elbows, and we had like a organizing event the night before the March where Reverend Jesse Jackson spoke to all of us like it was just so cool total like starstruck activism. Really cool stuff.
So after that happened, you know, I've been pretty politically involved with the Women's March, but also just you know sort of staying involved with everything that's going on and has been going on since 2016. But I had to step away from the leadership role just because of how... you know, like we thought we would have the protests and then after that it would kind of slow down and we would be able to do just some like organized actions and letter-writing campaigns and work on getting people out for the 2018 midterms, but it never slowed down. I mean literally a month later was the airport protest, you know. After Trump announced the immigration ban, and it has just been constant, which is scary.
And yeah, it's scary, but I think the best medicine for me in my strife was to get involved and it really did help me get out of the negative dystopian space of like “the world is ending everything's fucked” to like... You know, I mean, I guess I was probably the poster child of what Trump was all about. I thought I was politically active. I thought that I was informed. I thought I was better than because I read the news and talk politics, but I wasn't doing anything, you know, I voted for the president every four years and that's it. And so sort of that level of apathy that I think a lot of Democrats had that kind of got us here. I was sort of like the poster child of what happened that night in November that kind of woke so many people up and turned everybody out to the March. I mean it was like the biggest global action in history that day of the Women's March which is just so cool.
Lisa: That's really badass.
Lisa: So now that you're living in Whitefish are you going to try to do anything for the state of Montana or like you know for women's initiatives here or what's your thoughts?
Kenzie: Yes. Oh, oh man. Well Whitefish is an interesting political climate. I'm sure you know that. There is some... Richard Spencer is from here, the lovely Richard Spencer and there was a lot of stuff that went down right around the election in Whitefish as well, which actually is pretty inspiring because long story short. They were trying to do a bunch of Neo-Nazi sort of actions and marches around here and the people of Whitefish were like hell no and shut it down which is so cool. But it's been interesting. My husband is in construction and it's been a real leap out of the bubble coming from Boulder to here. Just from his stories coming home from work. He's had like his crews... neighbors have called ICE on them. He you know, they've had all kinds of vandalism on their job sites that you know, “go home illegals” and all that garbage. And so I've definitely seen more anti-immigrant sentiment that I've ever seen.
So I went to a couple different actions here, both were in Kalispell around sort of like the keep families together actions that have been happening. There's a really cool organization, anyone who's in the Flathead Valley/Whitefish area called Love Lives Here. And so they've been really vocal with kind of the stuff that the Women's March was was doing and carrying the torch there and then some so I've been lucky enough to get to move to a place where that exists, you know, and where someone's already paving that road and I can jump in and help. But I think my struggle lately has just been what to be active about. I’m so frustrated about so many things I mean - there's some really cool organizations in outdoor that are just kicking ass on the climate change front and public lands and we just hired recently in Montana - you might have heard this Lisa - a director of The Office of outdoor recreation for Montana. I think she was like the third nationally
Lisa: Heck yeah.
Kenzie: Yeah. Do you know Luis Benitez?
Lisa: Yes, in Colorado.
Kenzie: Yeah. He is such a gangster. But yeah, so I met him in Colorado and he's one of my heroes I’m so inspired by him, but. So I've been trying to chase down Rachel Vandevoort who is the Luis Benitez of Whitefish. She's so rad. She's like fly fisher woman, hunter, total outdoors woman like awesome Whitefish local.
Lisa: Let's find her. Let's get her.
Kenzie: I know where her office is. Yeah, so I mean to answer your question, yes, I've definitely... People in Whitefish are paying attention and they’re just as fired up as everyone else and I think the moral of that story is the wherever you are. You can find like-minded people and you can find people that are willing to you know stand on a street corner and get the middle finger at them all day because they're holding a sign that says Love More on it, you know, you'll find you'll find your peeps. If you're if you're pissed off you should get out there
Lisa: Exactly. And so, how does that, like, mindset of, I don't know like, how does that translate into your choice to live here and be in the outdoors. Do you find yourself thinking about all these political issues while you're in your outdoor pursuits? And is that like the headspace that lends itself toward a deep thinking for you?
Kenzie: Yeah, for sure. I mean, I have been lucky enough to have jumped around through a couple different industries. And the outdoor industry is the most dialed in when it comes to activism that I've been exposed to because... especially when it comes to the climate and public lands. That directly affects our success as an industry if people can't get out to recreate or we make it really hard for them to do so or God forbid, it doesn't snow anymore. Holy shit. Then like, we're screwed. And now that's like the the dollars and cents side of it. I know that people in the industry care deeply about those things for other reasons, but at the end of the day, let's say about money. You know when you go to OR, I know you were at OR, outdoor retailer this winter the first one that was ever in Denver. Like there was a Vibe, you know, it was palpable like everybody was talking about the move from Utah. Everybody was talking, you know, everyone was fired up about Sally Jewell and her speech about public lands, and it was just. It wasn't just a business trade show conference. It was so much bigger than that, and I've been to you know, advertising technology trade shows and I've been to pharmaceutical industry trade shows - people aren’t fired up to be there. They're like waiting for five o'clock to come so they can like pull their flask out from their purse and like run out of that trade show hall as soon as they can, you know. So yeah, I think outdoor more than anything I'm able to kind of fuse my desire to get more involved with what I'm doing for work and they don't have to be at odds with one another. It’s just so refreshing.
Lisa: Yeah, that's awesome. It's an exciting time to just be a person.
Kenzie: It is, it's an exciting and terrifying time to be a person. I'm on the edge of my seat.
Lisa: Totally. Well, thanks so much for being on our podcast today.
Kenzie: Yes. Thanks for having me.
Lisa: You can follow Kenzie. At @KungFuKenzie on Instagram or you can follow Outdoor Prolink on Instagram and it's @OutdoorProlink.
Tune in next week when I'm talking to Abby Wise, the online managing editor at Outside Magazine. Abby is so positive. I was so excited to talk to Abby. So check it out. Here's a sneak peek and we'll see you next week.
Abigail: Wikipedia is almost totally run by men and it's something that they are working on changing but it's definitely not there yet. So what that means is that when you have a bunch of men who are the ones approving what goes public on this, like, huge encyclopedia that we all look at, you just see a lot more men on there. So we learned about this problem and we started thinking, how can we help? How can we add to this conversation? Because I mean, when you Google someone and you see their Wikipedia page that is a sign that that person is important and is a valuable persona in whatever industry they work within. And so if you Google someone and and that isn't coming up, then I mean, maybe that that flags the opposite and that's not fair. And so we were noticing there were a ton of women who do not have Wikipedia pages from within the outdoor industry. And so we started to host these workshops where we have a handful of people come out and it can be anyone. You don't have to work in media or anything or even in the outdoor industry. You can just be an enthusiast. And you come out and we will teach you how to find valuable resources, how to... I mean unfortunately, Wikipedia as a whole is a little bit clunky to use sometimes, so we'll teach you how to use it, and how to have the best shot at getting your pages approved by those editors. And so then that'll be like the first half of the workshop and then the second half, we'll all just like sit down, have a beer and we have a list of like rad women of the outdoors who we want to get on Wikipedia and we just like start plugging away at those.