Chip Smith, President

As a California native, Chip developed an early love for outdoor sports through water and snow skiing, road and mountain biking, surfing and a few years of football and cross-country running.SOAR-Chip-Smith

His passion for sports helped him develop into a successful marketing professional with more than 25 years of experience in the sporting goods, healthcare, software and communications industries. The majority of those years were spent with sporting goods industry leaders Shimano American Corporation and Specialized Bicycles, Inc.

Chip began his career in 1988 with the Los Angeles office of Ogilvy & Mather advertising, where he spent three years as a billing supervisor. He then spent seven years in sales and marketing positions with Shimano American Corporation, the world’s dominant leader in bicycle components. As marketing manager, Chip directed the company’s strategy and execution of advertising, collateral, point-of-purchase, trade show, advocacy efforts, governmental outreach, promotional efforts, as well as product launches to the trade, government and consumers in the U.S. market.

Specialized Bicycles recruited Chip away from Shimano to become its global marcom manager, a position he held for nearly three years as he directed a team in all aspects of Specialized’s international marketing communications efforts. Chip then spent the next four-plus years in a variety of marketing and sales consulting engagements with firms both inside and outside the recreation marketplace before joining SOAR Communications in 2005.

Chip earned his bachelor’s degree in Business Management from Brigham Young University, and his MBA from Pepperdine University. He also lived in Tokyo, Japan for a year and half, where he learned the Japanese language.

He moved to Salt Lake City, Utah in 2004 where he lives, skis, and rides with his wife, Debbie.

Julie Kelly, Account Executive

Julie is SOAR’s account executive based in Southern California and works on the SealSkinz, Kinetic trainers and Haibike accounts. She also worked on projects for SOAR clients Bike Utah and the Utah High School Cycling League, and is a great sounding board for ideas on SOAR’s other clients.

Jullie Kelly

Julie grew up in Connecticut and earned a BA at UConn. Her career began at a boutique marketing agency owned by advertising powerhouse DMB&B, where she worked in Account Service for clients British Airways, Revlon, Cadbury Beverages, and Chase Bank. She learned about big budget media buys, print jobs, direct mail, and trade marketing.

Next, she took a walk on the client side as Marketing Manager for a Bruegger’s Bagels franchise, where she learned about small budget media buys, event sponsorship, and guerrilla marketing. She may or may not have made appearances in the company’s inflatable “Bagel Dude” costume.

Julie subsequently held positions as department supervisor, recruiter, and nonprofit fundraiser and gained experience in the mortgage, humanitarian, and creative services industries. Each job involved copywriting, communications, sales, and OCD-level attention to detail.

A former Cat 2 bicycle racer who met her husband on a training ride, Julie considers breaking into the bike industry as one of her best career accomplishments. She joined Canari Cyclewear as an Inside Sales Rep in 2010, servicing 50% of their U.S. dealers and supporting a dozen outside sales reps.

Next, she combined her insight into bike shops, passion for cycling, and marketing knowledge to create a successful freelance business as a copywriter and project manager. Julie has written websites, press releases, catalogs, and media kits for a host of bike industry clients. She began working with SOAR in 2014.

There’s road, track, and mountain bikes in Julie’s garage, though she admits that her road bike logs the most miles. When she’s not out riding or spending time with her family, she volunteers for Girl Scouts, PTA, and Canine Companions for Independence.

Beth Cochran, Special Projects

Beth Cochran is a business pioneer. Serving national and inter-national multi-million dollar companies since 1997, her firm as one of the first in satellite companies in the business of Beth Cochrancommunications for the outdoor industry. She is founder of What’s Up Public Relations, whose mission is to provide immediate brand positioning and marketing expertise to both new and established high-end specialty manufacturers in the outdoor, ski, and sport industries. In addition to PR, Beth’s firm also offers event planning, promotions, and athlete programs.

Beth is an industry expert with 18 years in the field. Her firm has been named a top ranking public relations agency in the outdoor industry by Gear Trends-SNEWS. She has served as an Outdoor Industries Women’s Coalition (OIWC) board member and chair for more than five years, and has served as an Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) seminar facilitator. Beth has created award-winning designs that include logos, catalogs, and trade-show booths. She was selected as a Rotarian business delegate to Japan, was a founding board member of the Children’s Museum in Bozeman, Montana, and has biked unsupported across America in 60 days to raise awareness of homelessness in America.

When beth is not working, her passions include adventure travel, camping, steep slopes, sunny trails, cooking and gardening. She lives in Denver, CO with her family clan and two children, two children and a new dog. Experience/Clients include: Bausch & Lomb, Outlook Eyewear, Marker bindings, K2, Dana Design, National Geographic Society, Backpackers Pantry, Sportif, LaFuma, Deuter, Gramicci, Chaos Headwear, Fits Socks, Bergan’s of Norway, Treksta, Krimson Klover and Precision Travel Werx.

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