President and Owner
Director and founder of Alpine Ascents International, Todd has achieved unparalleled success in the mountain guiding industry and is one of the world's leading mountaineers. Todd spent most of his childhood in Alaska where his prowess and love for mountaineering were developed. In his eighteen years of guiding, he has led 8 expeditions to Mt. Everest, and has guided successful expeditions on every continent including all of the Seven Summits. In addition to instructing mountaineering courses, Todd has recently led successful expeditions to Mongolia, Rainier, Elbrus, Kilimanjaro, Vinson, Everest and a number of first ascents in the arctic region of Greenland. Recently, Todd led our trip to Cho-Oyu and runs our school and Denali programs in Alaska. Todd joins many of our expeditions in a support role, overseeing logistics, climber development and ensuring a good time is had by all. He currently lives in Alaska where he is raising yaks, fishing and flying. Forever climbing great peaks around the world, Todd just climbed Aconcagua again as well as Australia's Kosciusko, completing his Seven Summits for the second time. In 1998 Todd was awarded the American Alpine Club's prestigious David J. Sowles award for his rescue efforts on Mt. Everest in 1996.
Article on Kilimanjaro Interview with Todd
Director of Programs
Gordon is a founding member of Alpine Ascents and is responsible for overseeing all operations and creating written materials, researching climbing and cultural histories. He manages all aspects of the business, office and is our marketing expert with a keen interest in client care and customer service.
On the travel front, he is a long-time independent traveler, as he scouts new locations such around the globe with a particular focus on the Indian subcontinent. (Current focus for 2013/14 is on newly opened peaks in the Indian Himalayas). Gordon has traveled extensively for the past twenty years, with numerous visits and long stays in West Asia. As a writer, he has had both fiction and travel works published in the U.S. and India. Gordon has served as an Indian subcontinent expert for numerous media sources such the New York Times and Outside Magazine and has appeared on CNN, MSNBC and the NBC Nightly News. He has a particular interest in hill tribes, having visited India’s remote Nagaland state. Most recently Gordon and his family joined our trek to Everest base camp, introducing his kids to the joys of Asian travel. Gordon currently leads cultural tours (art, architecture and history) in India, the last trip with a small group to Central India’s remote areas. Please feel free to contact Gordon should you be interested in private tours of India or any of Alpine Ascents programs.email Gordon
Director of Finance & Operations
Gary directs the day-to-day financial operations of Alpine Ascents. He's recently arrived in Seattle after living overseas for a number of years whilst working for various not for profits. Gary's interests include soccer, cricket and a growing understanding of baseball.email Gary
As Guide Manager, Melanie supports guide staff in the field, oversees guide scheduling & recruitment, permitting, and coordinates guide trainings. In addition she acts as a liaison between office and guide staff in order to provide the highest quality programs possible to our climbers. Melanie brings diverse professional experience working as a field Instructor and Course Director for Outward Bound, a guide for young adult cancer survivors on wilderness trips, a classroom teacher and an outdoor educator. Melanie has traveled extensively in the United States and abroad but is happy to call Seattle home. In her free time she explores the outdoors by foot, bike, skis, or boat as much as possible.email Melanie
Director of Information Technology
A life-long outdoor enthusiast, Matt has over 15 years of outdoor industry experience and a penchant for media and information design which has garnered multiple awards. As Director of Information Technology, Matt manages and refines our network, media, and business systems, develops and designs our marketing, advertising, and promotional materials, and is in charge of all facets of our expedition cybercasts. He is also responsible for creating and maintaining our award-winning web site and keeping us sane when said technology become all together too much.email Matt
Store & Gear Manager
As Gear Manager, Brent oversees the logistics for our Cascade climbs in addition to managing all rentals and equipment. His mountaineering experience includes extensive climbing in the Cascades and internationally in Mexico, Ecuador, and Argentina. Brent is a Pacific Northwest native and a graduate of the Western Washington University Recreation Program. When not working at the office you'll find Brent continuing his outdoor passions climbing, skiing in the Cascades or sailing in Puget Sound.email Brent
Born and raised in Vermont, Alayna moved out west in 2006 and has been with Alpine Ascents ever since. As our Accounting Specialist, Alayna handles our payroll and land use permits as well as assisting with accounting, trip reservations and customer service. Outside the office Alayna is an avid potter and enjoys exploring Seattle's many neighborhoods that cross her walking and jogging paths.email Alayna
Specialty Programs Coordinator
Since 1999 Kristine has been an integral part of our Alpine Ascents staff. She recently stepped down from her position as the Director of Operations that she held for 10 years to allow more time for her other three passions: family, travel and climbing. These passions figure prominently in her new role at Alpine Ascents as Specialty Programs Coordinator where she plans to get more people out "experiencing the world". Kristine's intimate knowledge of the day-to-day operations, finance, and expedition planning of Alpine Ascents combined with her travel and climbing background suit perfectly to lead new trip development focusing on custom travel. The goal of her position is to create unparalleled expeditions or treks for private and small groups looking for an expertly crafted experience. She also will be a partner to non-profit organizations interested in developing new and unique fundraising opportunities. If you have interest in setting up a private, custom trip or charity fundraiser please contact Kristine to help plan your next adventure.email Kristine
As the Program Coordinator, Ellen handles all climber confirmation packets as well as handling hotel reservations, arranging excursions, and preparing other necessary in country services. Ellen is originally from the Midwest, but is excited to call Seattle home. Her passions include human rights, global affairs, traveling, and movies (quiz her, she knows them all!).email Ellen
Chris is often the first point of contact for clients. He signs people up for trips, juggles the various waitlists, and keeps the trip availability up-to-date on the website. Chris only recently arrived in Seattle, having grown up in Wisconsin and lived in Los Angeles for a dozen years. His interests include music, movies, and books.email Chris
Having climbed, skied, and paddled whitewater both nationally and internationally, Matt comes to Alpine Ascents with a versatile and thorough knowledge of all-things gear. As Equipment Supervisor, aka "Resident Gear Junkie", Matt is responsible for ensuring that all climbers are well-outfitted for any trip- summit climbs, school courses, and mountain treks.email Matt
Willi has been climbing, guiding and teaching for the past quarter century. Willi is considered one of the premier instructors in America and his students have had outstanding success in reaching personal goals. He has amassed hundreds of ascents (many while guiding) in Washington, Canada and Alaska. Willi is an AMGA Certified Alpine Guide and in the past was responsible for training and certifying new guides, and accrediting guide services. Fluent in Spanish and well versed in South American culture he has an outstanding reputation for leading safe and successful trips. Needless to say, Willi has developed quite a following and has led climbs to Mt. Sajama, Cho-Oyu, Pumori, Island & Mera Peak and multiple guided ascents of Denali and in Mexico, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia. Willi has led over thirty climbs to the summit of Aconcagua and is considered one of the world's leading climbing and logistical experts in the region. Willi also bears the responsibility of training new guides on climbs around the world. Willi led our 2000 Everest, Vinson, Aconcagua, Denali and Kilimanjaro expeditions. Willi is the consummate mountain guide and one of the most respected mountaineers in America. Most recently Willi led our 2002 & 2003 Mt. Everest expeditions that put 31 climbers on the summit! Willi oversees our Alaska Mountaineering School and Denali Programs.
As an assistant guide, Ellie has added a superb dimension to our domestic and international programs. A naturalist by profession, Ellie has assisted Willi in guiding Aconcagua, Ecuador's Volcanoes, Mt. Baker, Rainier, and teaching classes at the AAMS for over 15 years. A talented artist, she is an asset to every trip she joins, bringing a wealth of experience, cultural knowledge and teaching skills to every expedition. Ellie has been our Base Camp Manager on Aconcagua and Mount Everest and has overseen base camp operations for some of our most successful high altitude climbs. Currently Ellie manages our Alaska Mountaineering School and Denali Programs.