The Beaumier U.P. Heritage Center is hosting a live virtual event, “An Evening with Jeannie Thoren,” at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 30. The Marquette native and NMU alumna has spent the past three decades researching the way women ski and developing specialized equipment for them, earning her a place among Skiing magazine's “Top 25 Most Influential People in Skiing in the last 50 years.” She will share her career experiences, as well as what it was like growing up skiing on Cliff's Ridge (Marquette Mountain). Participants will be able to ask questions during the live stream.
Thoren won many medals and trophies at Cliff's Ridge—one of many U.P. hills featured in the Beaumier Center's current exhibit on alpine skiing history—before joining the Junior Olympic Team. After graduating from Northern, she took off for Switzerland to ski—washing dishes to pay the bills—and eventually did the same in Jackson Hole, Wyo. and Sun Valley, Idaho.
She developed the “Thoren Theory” after 30 years of retrofitting her own equipment as a method of improving the technique of women skiers through modified gear. In 1978, she brought her ideas to a ski trade show in Las Vegas and started to make waves in the industry.
Thoren later began a regular column in Ski Magazine on the need for the development of ski equipment just for women. This led to working with the Blizzard Ski Company in Austria, developing the first true skis for women. Later in the 2000s, she developed a new women's ski for Dynastar, which won the 2007 Ski of the Year award from Ski Magazine.
Thoren was inducted into the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Hall of Fame in 2014 and the Colorado Snow Sports Hall of Fame in 2022. In 2014, she received the Alumni Achievement Award from NMU.
To watch the event, click here.