Live Like Sam and the Sam Jackenthal Fund has partnered with U.S. Ski & Snowboard with the shared objective of providing young athletes with the tools to succeed in sports and life with a sense of gratitude.
The Sam Jackenthal Fund of Park City Community Foundation and LiveLikeSam.org was founded by Ron Jackenthal, the father of the late Sam Jackenthal, a Park City, Utah, local and young man of strong character and values who was also a budding and promising world-class athlete. The 16-year-old freeskiing champion passed away in 2015 from injuries suffered in a training accident in Australia. Since Sam’s passing, Live Like Sam has specified a clear set of core principles (CARE) which support the following services: creating curriculum and an education platform with training modules, fostering a network of community service partnerships, as well as establishing funding for merit and need-based scholarships.
“I am really excited about U.S. Ski & Snowboard supporting LiveLikeSam.org,” said Julie Glusker, Director of Athlete Career and Education at U.S. Ski & Snowboard. “The mission of Live Like Sam parallels our own organizational mission, ‘to lead, encourage, and support athletes in achieving excellence by empowering national teams, clubs, coaches, parents, officials, volunteers, and fans.’”
“Our whole athlete development philosophy at the national team level must have a solid underpinning as young and developing athletes navigate their individual pathways, and Live Like Sam can provide a relevant, meaningful, principled foundation for this process,” added Glusker. “Steeping athlete progression in the Live Like Sam core principles of community, athletics, responsibility, and education (CARE) will ensure that developing athletes grow into capable, caring, and compassionate competitors. Athletes at all levels can appreciate, relate to, and benefit from the lessons of LiveLikeSam.org."
“U.S. Ski & Snowboard's whole athlete development model and mission will benefit from the meaningful foundation of Live Like Sam programs,” said Ron Jackenthal. “As young athletes individually develop in life and in sport, they will thrive athletically and emotionally from the LiveLikeSam.org mission and lessons. I see Live Like Sam as being highly complementary to a performance-based organization. We are focused on whole person development as well as whole athlete development and helping athletes build character on and off the podium. The U.S. Ski & Snowboard values of excellence, passion, integrity, community, team, grit, fun, and safety all align with and complement the Live Like Sam CARE principles.”
The partnership is a natural fit for both organizations as U.S. Ski & Snowboard will provide Live Like Sam a nationwide distribution platform from which to promote its mission, curriculum and philanthropy. Live Like Sam will provide U.S. Ski & Snowboard its curriculum based on CARE principles.
Live Like Sam, although relatively new, has already started making significant contributions to the winter sports community. Since 2017, the Sam Jackenthal Fund has raised more than $125,000 to support more 100 total awards. Additionally, in just a few months since expanding the organization, Live Like Sam brought on 25 community partners. Some of these partners include the Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation, Ski Utah, Park City Mountain Resort, Deer Valley, Woodward, USASA Big Mountain West, and Utah’s own Youth Sports Alliance, Park City Education Foundation, Christian Center of Park City, the Park City Community Foundation, and many more.
In classic Sam Jackenthal fashion, U.S. Ski & Snowboard and Live Like Sam will move forward together with a go-big-or-go-home approach as well as embracing Sam’s coined phrase and philosophy of “Just Jackenthal it!” in their commitment to sport and, more importantly, the community he loved.
“When I think about what Sam would want, I realize he wants us all to go out and live large, be there for others, and be integrated into the community,” said Jackenthal. “That thought has been a big inspiration for me through this loss - and I can now share Sam’s legacy!”
Live Like Sam wants every young athlete to be able to develop the confidence and utilize the tools necessary to excel in life – as an athlete and as a person. Fueled by the Sam Jackenthal Fund, Live Like Sam empowers the positive personal development of young athletes through educational programs and services, community-based partnerships, and merit and need-based scholarships.