There is now light at the end of the tunnel as Lake Tahoe’s north shore communities and the Squaw Valley Resort are experiencing relief from the two most serious challenges that they have been faced with in the last few years. A devastating drought and the threat of incorporating Olympic Valley, home to Squaw Valley Resort, took a heavy toll on winter sports resorts and other small businesses here. The fear of losing business and the threat of an unwelcome incorporation of the area had been the worry of many for years.The area is no longer under the incorporation threat and also early season storms and cold temperatures have ensured that Squaw Valley and other resorts in the area opened earlier than usual, for the first time for nearly a decade.
Andy Wirth, the CEO of Squaw Holding on rgj.com, fought against the incorporation because he believed that it could have increased taxes, reduced services and ultimately isolate the communities living here from the others as Reno-Gazette Journal reported it. His efforts were rewarded when the incorporation backers withdrew their pursuit due to legalities. To this effect, the Holdings plan on increasing developments in both commercial and residential undertakings in the area to improve the profile and harmony of the communities living here. At the same time, they also have plans to connect Squaw Valley and the neighboring Alpine Meadow area by the use of a gondola. This connection will integrate the local communities to live and work together. The Local Agency Formation Commission in California stalled the incorporation campaign for the main reason that a town council was not a viable proposition for the area. Wirth now believes that the way forward now for the area is uniting the local communities through a well-developed transportation network.
Currently, Andy Wirth is the CEO of Squaw Valley Ski Holdings, a company that has made the area a world-class tourist destination. He was also appointed to the board of the Reno Sparks Convention and Visitors’ Authority (RSCVA) in 2013. He has vast experience in international resort management having worked with various airlines in Utah, Colorado, and Canada. He is also actively involved in contributing to both the environmental and community activities in the Lake Tahoe area with the objective of improving the wellbeing of the local communities. He is also the co-founder of Ironman team known as the “Wounded Warrior Support” that raises funds for the Navy SEAL Foundation to honor and support the fine men of the Navy SEALs together with their families after they return home. He mooted this idea after being involved in a skydiving accident which motivated him to encourage others to have hope despite the odds they face in life.