In 2008, Steve suffered a spinal cord injury while skiing in the Granite Chief area at Squaw. After spending a year in different hospitals around the country, Steve returned to Northern California and was introduced to Roy Tuscany. Shortly after the two met in person Roy asked Steve how High Fives could help him, and Steve expressed to Roy his desire to get back out skiing again. In 2010 High Fives helped Steve achieve his goal, and made him the first grant recipient when they bought him all the equipment and lessons needed to get him skiing again in a safe manner. After seeing and experiencing what High Fives Foundation did for him, Steve was honored to pay it forward by helping Roy and Adam with athletes and events for the next year. When a position became available, Steve was offered the role of CR Johnson Healing Center Coordinator and graciously accepted.
Born and raised at sea level, James grew to be a passionate action sports enthusiast surfing the waters of the Atlantic in the summer and sliding the slopes of Vermont in the winter. A University of Vermont Alumni, he spent six years of his early twenties getting hyped on Red Bull working for their marketing team in Vermont and later in New York. Deciding it was time for a change, James landed himself in Lake Tahoe where he connected with Roy Tuscany, fellow High Fives Foundation co-founder. While his time in Tahoe may be viewed as short in comparison to others, his positive energy and love for skiing translated into the creation of what is now High Fives Foundation. James has returned to New York and is continuing his education to become a registered nurse, recently gaining acceptance to Stony Brook University's BSN program. In the meantime, he is successfully holding down weekend warrior status on the slopes of Vermont and New Hampshire, chasing pow wherever he can slay it. Check out what he's up to at www.hotbutterblog.blogspot.com.
Nik David Sullivan
Nik David was born outside of Stockholm, Sweden and grew up ski racing in Stowe, Vermont. His first experiments with video came in high school, when he discovered that making short films was not only a great outlet for his creativity, but a way to charm his teachers into letting him pass his classes. After high school, he started special event videography business Doxa Studios with a friend from Stowe and still shoots weddings and events for Doxa on both coasts. Nik eventually moved to Santa Cruz for college and fell in love with California. After visiting his brother in Lake Tahoe over the holidays, Nik realized that there could really be no better place for a creative skiier and videographer to find his inspiration than in the Sierras. In 2010 Nik co-produced Unofficial Networks' Shane McConkey tribute documentary G.N.A.R., and he is excited to further support the ski community he loves through collaborating with High Fives.
Michelle Parker was born in Truckee, CA and lived in Squaw her whole life. Growing up with skiing as her day care, it was inevitable that this would become a big part of her life. She started out on the mighty might program and raced when she was older. At the age of fifteen Michelle switched her ambitions over to freeskiing and entered into her first big competition, the US Open. From then on out she has been focusing on competing, traveling, and skiing as much as possible. Michelle has had a couple of knee injuries, one of which she is battling right now. 'Whenever I'm injured, I realize how important skiing is in my life. It is my biggest passion. I'm now a professional skier working to get through this injury and back on my skis.'
Katrina was born in New York City and after living in San Francisco for 11 years, moved “Back East” to Stowe in 2011.Skiing has always been a big part of her life – escaping to the mountains from the time she was a kid. While she was forced to spend a few years away from snow as a collegiate rower and coach, she snuck off to ski as often as she could.She is an avid fresh air enthusiast and competitive ski bum racer. After being diagnosed with colon cancer in 2008, she reconnected with her biological father who had suffered a life altering C1 spinal chord injury over 30 years ago skiing in Aspen.He is an inspiration and has never let his injury slow him down.Says Katrina, “I knew when I met Roy that I wanted to work together to empower other athletes like (my father) Les – especially on the East Coast. It is an honor to work with the High Fives team.”Katrina was introduced to the High Fives Foundation through the her cousin at Volkl Skis.She and Roy bonded over their passion for charging forward no matter what the odds, their mutual love of great shots of espresso and the ability to see the positive in any situation.