Futurist Project Background
In 2011, Stasia Raines and Deanna Lloyd gathered a group they considered to be the best and brightest young leaders in the outdoor industry for a dinner at OR Winter Market. Called The Futurist Project, they discussed ideas, questions, concerns and the passion behind things they cared most about. The evening was a result of countless conversations had with peers in the outdoor industry.
There was a growing sentiment among this generation in the outdoor industry that there wasn’t a venue that fit them – a place for meaningful conversation, mentoring or relationship building. These leaders were starving for connectivity – to relate on why they had all chosen this industry in the first place, what kept them there and how the industry needed to grow and evolve.
This evening grew into twice-yearly gatherings for emerging leaders in the outdoor industry. The Futurist Project continues to create space for community and collaboration consisting of 50 – 135 individuals. These participants, or Futurists, are chosen by peers or recommended by an industry executive.
It became apparent that there is an opportunity for deeper-training for a subset of Futurists – from leadership training, to industry learning to mentoring. To meet this need, Futurist Advisory Council consisting of Deanna Lloyd, Christian Folk, Kevin Hogan and Eric Bacous partnered with the Outdoor Industry Association to develop the Future Leadership Academy.