Other NewsBirkie Announces New Executive Director Ben Popp

Ben Popp (American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation courtesy photo)
Ben Popp (American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation courtesy photo)

Ben Popp to Take on Leadership of Largest Ski Race in North America

(Press release)

HAYWARD, Wisconsin (May 8, 2013) – The American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation (ABSF) has appointed Ben Popp as its new Executive Director. Popp will replace Ned Zuelsdorff who has served as Executive Director for eight years and announced his retirement earlier this year. Popp will be leaving his current position as Executive Director of the SISU Nordic Ski Foundation, based in Willernie, MN. He assumes the ABSF position on June 1, 2013.

Birkie executive director Ben Popp
New Birkie executive director Ben Popp

“We are thrilled to have Ben on board. His Nordic skiing background and experience are a great fit for the Birkebeiner organization. We’re confident Ben’s leadership, creativity, and passion will help us advance our goals and meet the challenges ahead,” said Sue Scheer, Board President, American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation.

Popp has been instrumental in building the SISU Foundation, also a non-profit centered around Nordic skiing and promoting an active, outdoor lifestyle. Under his leadership, SISU has grown rapidly, in part through a combination of expanded programming, hosting a variety of races and events, and building community relationships. Popp brings to the American Birkebeiner his experience in marketing, fundraising, sponsorship, programming, and project management.

Originally from northern Wisconsin, Popp has been involved in American Birkebeiner events since the late 1970s. “Having grown up participating in North America’s greatest ski race, I’m excited to join the ABSF team and continue the tradition of excellence, hosting quality events and getting people involved in an outdoor lifestyle,” said Popp. “My family and I are looking forward to becoming a part of the Northwoods community.”

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