Park City, Utah, July, 22nd – Former Nordic Combined Skier Jed Hinkley began his role as Sport Development Director this week and joined the rest of the USA Nordic Sport staff in Park City, Utah as they prepare for the 18th Annual Springer Tournee. Jed replaces Gary Crawford who’s service to USA Nordic for the past two years has greatly helped our organization and community understand the landscape of Ski Jumping and Nordic Combined in the United States. Executive Director Billy Demong and High Performance Director Jon Schafer redesigned the position this spring to emphasize a more data-driven and analytical approach. Jed will focus on growing the sport at the club level by implementing proven strategies and best practices from across the country and around the world. Key areas for this updated position will be coaches’ education and club development. This will be accomplished through the creation of resources that assist coaches and clubs in recruiting young athletes, retaining those athletes, and providing athletes with the most up-to-date physical and technical skills to enhance existing structures for both Ski Jumping and Nordic Combined. A large component of Jed’s role will be monthly visits to clubs, constant and consistent communication with coaches, and acting as a liaison between coaches and USA Nordic Staff.
Jed brings his seven years of experience as a National Team athlete and he was also a member of four Junior World Championship Teams, the 2002 Olympic Team, and the 2003 World Championship Team. Following his time as an athlete, Jed received his BS. in Health and Wellness from UNC Asheville. He then taught high school Chemistry and coached cross-country running for four years, ironically at Hinkley High School. Following his time as a teacher he received his Master of Public Health from UNC Chapel Hill. Most recently Jed worked on health education initiatives under a federal grant aimed at improving health outcomes for economically distressed regions of the country.
Jed is enthusiastic about working with clubs, coaches, and communities across the country, and he returned to the sport because of his passion to give back to a sport that greatly helped shape him as a person. His graduate work and job experience bring a strong analytical background to the organization and this will be focused toward all aspects of this new role. Jed will be helping expand the scope, reach and effectiveness of USA Nordic with the ultimate goal of making the US the best Nordic nation in the world.
Congratulations Jed! Welcome and I look forward to seeing you on the hill!