Nathan Fey leaves the Colorado Office of Outdoor Recreation Industry Office

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Nathan Fey, who took over as head of the Colorado Office of Outdoor Recreation Industry in 2019, is stepping down next month.

Fey, a sixth-generation Coloradan who spent 12 years as the state’s regional director of American Whitewater, leaves the state recreation office to become director of a Colorado-based philanthropic foundation. Fey could not be reached to discuss his new position.

“Nathan is a strong advocate for the outdoor recreation industry and his determined advocacy has positioned Colorado as the base camp for the outdoor industry,” said Pat Meyers, director of the Office of Economic Development and international trade, in a press release.

The Office of the Outdoor Recreation Industry is set to begin distributing nearly $10 million in Economic Development Association grants, helping the state’s recreation economy rebound from the pandemic. .

According to the latest figures from US Bureau of Economic Analysis. Last year, outdoor recreation employed 120,000 coloradans who earned $5.7 billion, compared to 149,000 workers who won $6.4 billion in 2019.

Fey recently began working to increase outdoor recreation opportunities in marginalized communities using the new Colorado Outdoor Equity Grant Program. Using Colorado Lottery money, the program provides grants to communities for outdoor programs, gear rentals, equipment, transportation, and staff supervision.

The Office of the Outdoor Recreation Industry was formed in 2015 under Governor John Hickenlooper as the second state office dedicated to promoting the outdoor recreation economy. This spring, the office for the first time guaranteed annual financing as an item in the state budget. With the office signed by Governor Jared Polis, the Colorado Office of Recreation becomes a perpetual part of state government.

The OEDIT statement announcing Fey’s departure noted his “invaluable stewardship” in establishing consistent funding for the recreation office.

Fey’s last day is January 14. Deputy Office Manager Samantha Albert will act as Acting Manager.

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