Connie Nelson Retires from Executive Director Position After 22 Years

Connie Nelson Skiing

Connie Nelson, executive director of the Alf Engen Ski Museum Foundation, has announced her retirement.  The foundation oversees the Alf Engen Museum (the history of skiing in the Intermountain Area) and the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Museum (2002 Olympic/Paralympic Winter Games Museum). Both are housed in the S. J. (Joe) Quinney Winter Sports Center at Utah Olympic Park, site of the 2002 games’ luge, bobsled, skeleton, and ski jumping events.   

Nelson served as executive director of the museums for 20 years after serving two years as assistant director. Prior, she worked as business manager for the Utah Olympic Park.

Alan K. Engen, founder of the museums said this about the out-going director: “Connie has been the ‘spirit’ and primary spokesperson behind virtually everything that has transpired regarding the museums since she accepted the role as executive director.”  He added, “The many thousands of museum visitors and members of the museums’ board are the beneficiaries of her efforts in terms of how the museum has been operated and how it has grown from a local attraction to a highly respected ski museum on the world stage.” 

Ron Steele, chairman of the Engen foundation board of trustees and former president of Rossignol North America, acknowledged that “Connie was a major, tireless force behind the museums becoming world-class repositories of skiing history that attract almost 500,000 visitors a year.”  

He said the two museums have received local, state, and national awards and grants under her leadership. Her ongoing expansion and update efforts and the museums’ elementary school student field trip programs are highly regarded among Utah and national museum and educational communities.   “What’s more”, adds Steele, “Connie was an exceptional fund-raiser which, in our case, is the lifeblood of our museums since they have no admission charge.”

Note from Connie:  

Starting as the Assistant Director in March 2002 and then as Executive Director in 2004, I have seen this museum grow and mature into a world-class facility.  I deeply admire the Board, staff, docents, supporters, members, guests, students, vendors, and everyone who has contributed to this museum becoming a world-class facility. Thank you to the community that has supported me in all aspects of this job.   It is hard to thank everyone, but just know this museum is a better place because of all your support.  Thank you, Park City, Summit County, Utah State, and all ski history organizations throughout the U.S.

It has been a pleasure to contribute to the tremendous work that the Alf Engen Ski Museum does to preserve snow sport history in the Intermountain Region. I have greatly enjoyed working in every aspect of the museum and truly appreciate the opportunities and knowledge I have gained.  This museum has always felt like home to me.          

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