As the ski world prepares for the 2016-17 season, the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation (SVSEF) has announced several key hires for the upcoming year.

Phil McNichol, SVSEF alpine technical director last season, has been named athletic director. In his new, expanded role, McNichol will serve as the leader of all athletic programs of the organization and is responsible for guiding the evolution and sustaining a best-in-class athletic development program consistent with all SVSEF’s goals and objectives. At the helm of the U.S. Men’s Alpine Team for 11 years, McNichol’s athletes produced World Cup overall and discipline titles, 42 World Cup victories, 98 World Cup podiums, four World Championship titles and an Olympic gold medal. McNichol’s notable athletes are a veritable who’s who of the alpine world, including Ted Ligety, Bode Miller, Steven Nyman, Andrew Weibrecht, Daron Rahlves and Marco Sullivan. McNichol was named Coach of the Year by USSA and International Coach of the Year by U.S. Alpine, both in 2008.


SVSEF has also hired John Grigsby, head coach of the freestyle program, and Tyler Conway, head coach of the freeskiing program.

Grigsby, 35, most recently served as director of freestyle development at Ski and Snowboard Club Vail for six years where he was in charge of a staff of seven coaches and 57 athletes. Grigsby, with nearly 20 years of coaching experience at Carrabassett Valley Academy and Gould Academy in Maine, has guided eight athletes to the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Team. His certifications include USSA Level I Moguls, USSA Level II Inverted Aerials and USSA Level III Coach and Chief of Course. Grigsby is a 2005 graduate of Maine College of Fine Arts.

Conway, 36, hails from Western New York. For the last seven years, he has been the assistant program manager and head coach at Team Breck Sports Club in Colorado. Conway’s certifications include Level 100 and 200 freestyle licenses, and Level IV Woodward Trampoline Progression. His former athletes, including U.S. Team member Emilia Wint, regularly competed in X Games, U.S. Grand Prix, USASA Nationals, Dew Tour and Revolution Tour events.

Release and photo courtesy of Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation