Program Director/Junior Head Coach
Mighty Mite Head Coach
Masters Coordinator
Jimmy Matthiesen



nils-erik 1 Nils-Erik Riise
The 2016-17 ski season marks 32 years of working in the ski industry. Nils’ passion for skiing and coaching/teaching began at a very early age. He grew up skiing in Olympic Ski School at Stevens Pass and got his start in ski racing at age five. He then gradually transitioned into ski teaching at the age of thirteen. His passion for skiing and ski racing continued throughout his teens, which lead him into coaching for the Mission Ridge Buddy Werner Program and teaching for Mission Ridge Ski School. Those early years at Mission Ridge laid the foundation for a full time career in ski teaching and coaching.

In the 1990’s, Nils added Telemark skiing into his repertoire, and quickly found himself drawn back into competing. He raced in the Northwest Telemark Series for many years and also competed on the National Telemark Circuit and Telemark World Cup. His time in the race course was balanced with a full time ski teaching career, as well. This naturally led him into working for PSIA-NW as a Divisional Clinic Leader in Telemark and Alpine skiing and also the Northwest Technical Team from 2010-2013. The last 20 years of his career have mostly been spent at Stevens Pass Ski School, with a year spent as Ski School Manager at Crystal Mountain. In 2005, he landed a job as Training Director at Stevens Pass Ski School. This job paved the way for combining his TD responsibilities along with the responsibilities of working as “On-Snow Supervisor” for the ski school. The winters of 2008-2012 were spent managing and training the Stevens Pass staff of over 160 instructors, as well as being involved with the instructor training and educational programs for PSIA-NW.

• PSIA Level III – Alpine
• PSIA Level III – Telemark
• AASI Level One – Snowboard
• Divisional Clinic Leader – Alpine and Telemark
• Former NW Technical Team Member 2010-2013
• PSIA ACE Level One Children’s Certification
• USSA Level 100
• USSA Level 200
• USSA Level 300 – Completion planned for May 2015

Email address:


Masters Program Coordinator

Curt Spiel
I began skiing at Hyak in 1968 with Edmonds District 15 Ski School, raced a little in high school, and taught skiing at Hyak for three years. I went to school, grew up, established a career as a piano technician, and taught my kids to ski. All the family skis, with older son Gabe a Level 1 Instructor working with Outdoors For All. One daughter-in-law ski raced in California growing up and occasionally races Masters. In 2003 I found myself in a GS course at Apex Mountain on a family ski vacation. About three gates in I said to myself, “I have GOT to start doing this again!” I started race training at Stevens Pass in 2006 and Pacific Northwest Masters Racing the same year and have been at it ever since. I am currently working towards my Level 100 Coaching Credentials as well as getting to be a better ski racer. I enjoy the camaraderie and friendly competition of Masters ski racing as well as watching adult skiers develop skills to ski better!

For more information on the masters program feel free to email Curt


Linda Cowan
Coaching goals: To provide every athlete the opportunity to grow technically and tactically, but most importantly, racing teaches so many intangibles: responsibility, respect, teamwork, patience and perseverance and our job as coaches is to help guide athletes along this journey, both as athletes and young citizens developing lifelong skills.
Coaching/Teaching Experience:
• PSIA-NW Technical Team Member
• Divisional Clinic Leader
• Alpine Examiner
• Alpine Level III Certification
• Started teaching skiing 1989 for Bellevue Ski School
• Started coaching for Team Lyon in 2002
• Taught 5th grade in the Northshore School District from 1989-2013
• Currently a District Induction Coach for first year elementary teachers in the Northshore School District

Erik Bracht Erik Bracht
2016/17 will be my 5th year coaching for SPAC. I love watching the progression of all the racers and am thankful that they have helped me to improve as a coach. I raced on SPAC for 15 years, was a part of the Pacific Northwest Alpine Team in 2010 and qualified for the Junior Olympics, now known as the Junior Championships, 6 years in a row. I know what it takes to be a racer and I know what I like in a coach. I believe that racers of all abilities deserve the same individualized attention so my goal is reach out equally to each of the racers I coach. My parents, Bob and Dana Bracht, Uncle Klev Schoening and Grandparents Carm and Bill Schoening, all dedicated countless hours to SPAC’s racing program as coaches and volunteers; my mom and uncle even raced for the team so you can see that SPAC runs in my family blood! Here’s to getting after it this season!

Sean Bold Sean Bold
Sean has always had enormous passion for skiing. He started skiing at age 5, started teaching skiing at age 15 and started selling ski gear and fitting boots as a teenager. Sean’s 32 years of experience in the ski coaching /instruction side of the industry includes many years teaching and coaching full time, 10 years in Ski Area management; working in roles as Director of Snow Sports for Crystal Mountain and Training Director for the Steamboat Ski and Ride school. While at Crystal Sean started the Crystal Mountain Free Ride team that is still in existence today. He also owned Bold Solutions a small boot fitting business during his 10 years living in Park City Utah. While in Park City Sean raced and trained with the Park City Masters program and taught skiing for Deer Valley while part time coaching for the Silver Lake Ski Team.

This will be Sean’s first season with the Stevens Pass Alpine Club. Sean loves kids and loves hanging out with kids on the ski hill. He is very excited to share his knowledge and passion for skiing with the athletes and looks forward to learning as much from them as he is certain they will learn from him. When not coaching Sean loves to free ski and takes great pleasure in skiing non-stops, from top to bottom…his motto “chair lifts are for stopping and talking, not ski hills”! The kids in his groups will be taught plenty of great skills while logging lots of miles!

Certification and education:
USSA Level 100 coach
PSIA Level III Alpine with Children’s and Freestyle Accreditation
PSIA-NW National Examiner and clinician
Board Certified Pedorthist

larry calvin Larry Calvin
I began skiing at the age of 14 when I was invited to tag along with my older sister and one of her friends on a day trip to Snoqualmie Pass. I was hooked! The next year I convinced my parents to enroll me in ski lessons at Ski Acres and my passion for skiing was born. I skied recreationally through my freshman year at the University of Washington, before beginning my teaching career in 1979 for the Stevens Pass Ski School. Since then I have had the opportunity to teach skiing at Stevens Pass, Ski Acres, and Deer Valley Resort as well as coach for TEAM Lyon Alpine Race Team. During my career I have been an instructor, manager, program supervisor, trainer, training director, coach and race referee. Along the way I have been blessed with the opportunity to share my love and passion for the mountains with hundreds of people and look forward to doing so this winter.When not skiing, I enjoy road biking, playing golf, wine tasting and hanging-out with my wife of 30 years, Carrie.

Apple Cup 2014 022 Andrew Calvin
Racing/Coaching experience:
• 10 years Team Lyon racer
• 2 year coaching experience
Certification: PSIA Alpine Level 2
Goal: To positively impact athletes skiing, since I am close in age to many of the athletes be a good role model, and to have fun.

Apple Cup 2014 022 Katie Cutting
Racing/Coaching experience:
Katie is a Vermonter who spent the past two years in Wyoming before becoming a new Washingtonian! She started skiing at the age of two, and racing around the age of ten, based out of Green Mountain Valley School Ski Club. As she approached high school my parents decided against attending a ski academy, so they started a high school ski team at my 400-student high school in South Burlington, VT, which is still going strong today! She was recruited to ski for Boston College, where she studied nursing and was named captain of the ski team my senior year. After graduating she decided it was time to leave the East Coast and chase some big mountains. She landed in Jackson Hole, WY where she learned how to soul shred and backcountry ski. Her newest adventure has been travel nursing, which brought me to Seattle and to SPAC! She is very excited for her first season coaching, to share the love that she has for skiing and promote the life lessons and skills that years of racing gave her.

MikeGrimm Mike Grimm
Coaching goal: To help young racers ski fast, smart and to have fun doing it.
Coaching/Teaching Experience:
• Coaching career spans 1981 to 2001
• Head Coach for Mission Ridge Ski Academy
• Head Jr Coach for SPAC
• Represented PNSA as Head Coach for Western Regional and J1/J2 Olympic events
• Participated on the PNSCA board and held the president position for 2 years
Racing experience:
• 10 years SPAC racer
• USSA Level 2 Coach & PSIA Cert


Holly Holton

Born into a ski family of parents who were former race coaches and ski patrol at Mission Ridge and instructors at Park City, Snoqualmie and Stevens Pass; she grew up pretending to coach both her older and younger sister into perfect form, skiing around the back yard up Olalla Canyon, then tagging along clinic groups through grade school, racing for TAS (Team Alpental Snoqualmie) for a short stint and began teaching at Stevens Pass in 1986. Holly offers a wholistic approach to coaching that aims to develop passion for striving toward excellence in skiing and in life, as well as fostering a love of skiing and community.

• PSIA Level 3 Alpine
• PSIA Level 2 Snowboard
• PSIA Level 1 Telemark
• PSIA Freestyle Level 1
• PSIA Children’s Specialist
• Everett Ski School/Sno-Tec Ski School 1986-1989
• Shoreline Ski School 1989-1992 1993-1995
• Bob Hall Ski School 1993-1997
• Stevens Pass Ski School 1995- Present
• Full Time 1991-2000
• Team Lyon 2006-2010
• Private Coach 2010-2012 – Hiatus from ski racing to coach Ama Hartman, who left Team Lyon to pursue freeride competition. At 15, in a 15-18 year age bracket, she placed 2nd in her first event followed by, 1st in 4 events, 2nd overall at the Triple Crown, 1st overall at the Cowboy up and 9th at the North American Championships.
• SPAC 2012-Present

brehuston Bre Huston
I grew up skiing at Steven’s pass probably before I knew how to walk (family joke). After tearing up the mountain as a free skier I begged my parents to race, thus starting a lifelong love for not only skiing, but racing. I raced for Team Lyon through High School, and after graduating I spent a year racing for the Montana State University Ski Team. I then decided to start teaching. I spent 4 years teaching for the Big Sky Snowsports School gaining great teaching experiences and developing a passion for guiding others to discover their own passion for the sport.Coaching Goal: To have a positive impact on individuals and the team as a whole to help athletes move closer to their goals and have a great time out on the hill doing so.

Personal Goal: To continue my education as an instructor and as a coach by working towards certifications and to continue exploring skiing.
• PSIA Level III – Alpine
• PSIA Children’s Specialist II

Apple Cup 2014 208 Sara Larson
I grew up racing for Mount Hood Race Team and Bogus Basin Ski Racing Alliance. I raced in the Junior Olympics, U.S. Nationals, Nor-Ams, College Nationals, and a U.S Women’s Pro race. After racing sixteen years in PNSA, I continued racing on Scholarship for four years at Montana State University. While racing in College I raced NCAA my first two years and NCSA my last two years. The highlight of my College racing was being crowned the NCSA National Slalom Champion in 1987. I was also an All-American for 2 years, and team captain my senior year.I have fourteen years experience as a ski coach including coaching for: Bridger Bowl Ski Education Foundation, (Montana), Snow Summit Race Team (Big Bear Lake,
California), White Pass Alpine Club, and Stevens Pass Alpine Club. My main goal in ski coaching is to make sure the kids are “having fun” and to coach them to be better
life long skiers. I enjoy seeing smiles on the kid’s faces after they have accomplished a run they have never attempted/skied down before. I love to give back to the sport of ski racing what I got “out of it” and more.

I am in my 14th year as the Certified Athletic Trainer at Snohomish High School. In my spare time I love to ski with the family, hike, backpack, camp, bike, play soccer, and watch our kids in their sporting events.

• Level 1 Ski coach
• Certified Athletic Trainer
• Licensed Athletic Trainer

dave lucas spac Dave Lucas
My parents met through skiing while riding the train to the old Milwaukee Ski Bowl. They taught skiing for many years and later owned and ran a ski school at Snoqualmie Summit, where I grew up on skis from the time I could walk. I raced up through high school and then started teaching skiing. I worked in ski retail for many years working for the Boot Barn, Fiorini Sports and Flamingo Sports. When I went back to college at the UW, I trained with the ski team and even made the cut for the traveling team, although at the time I was working full time for Ski Lifts Inc. at Snoqualmie Summit as Skier Services Manager and chose not to travel. I have worked at many areas, Snoqualmie Summit, Alpental, Mission Ridge and Stevens Pass, as an instructor, supervisor, trainer, NASTAR Pacesetter, and coach. In the ski instruction world, I am a Level III alpine instructor, a national examiner, a divisional clinic leader, a PSIA-NW Technical Team Member, and past president of PSIA-NW. In the ski racing world I have completed my USSA Coaches Level 100 & 200 certifications and completed the USSA Level 300 Coaches School.

Dave Rowe Dave Rowe
Dave learned to ski at an early age spending most of his time chasing his father at Anthony Lakes, White Pass and Sun Valley. After years of moving back and forth between the Tri-Cities and the Seattle area, Dave refined his skiing by advancing through the Bellevue Ski School ranks at Snoqualmie Pass, Stevens Pass and Crystal Mountain. During his college years, Dave was a USSA freestyle and NASTAR competitor medaling in both Alpine and Telemark disciplines. Dave started his teaching career in 1991 by coaching a small racing program for Bellevue Ski School at Stevens Pass. Since that time, Dave has served as a training director/staff clinician for Bellevue Ski School, Clancy’s Ski School, Crystal Mountain and Stevens Pass.Dave’s Coaching Goal: “Above all else, I want my athletes to have fun, ski safely, do their best and encourage their peers to do the same. While ski racing is an individual sport, we train and compete as a unified SPAC team.”
Certifications & Experience:
• PSIA Level III Certified – Alpine & Telemark
• PSIA Level I Examiner – Alpine & Telemark
• PSIA-NW Divisional Clinic Leader since 2006
• PSIA Accredited Children’s Specialist since 2000
• PSIA Member since 1992
• PSIA-NW Senior Specialist Clinician
• USSA Level 100
• USSA Level 200 – Completion planned for January 2014

Outside Activities: During the week, Dave works as a registered investment advisor building a community of organizations and individuals that strive to experience more financial security in their lives. Dave enjoys cycling, fly fishing, climbing, ski mountaineering, kayaking, cooking and time with the family.

aaron Aaron Sharp
I have enjoyed teaching skiing for 18 years starting in 1984 with North South Ski Bowl where I helped with the small but energetic race team. I have taught skiing for Blue Wood, Alpental, Mini Mountain, and Lyons ski schools. I currently have my PSIA level one Alpine certificate .
Through the years I have encouraged my kids Chandler and Karey to learn to ski well. While Chandler’s ski career is purely recreational, Karey is motivated and excited to improve her skiing in the SPAC junior program. One of my favorite things to witness is helping skiers skill set move from wedge to rail.