Colorado governor John Hickenlooper announced the creation of the state’s first office for outdoor recreation last week. The Colorado Outdoor Recreation Industry Office will operate within the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, according to a press release.
The Outdoor Industry Association calculates that the outdoor recreation industry brings in $13 billion annually in consumer spending and generates $4.2 billion in salaries and wages per year.
Eagle, Colorado resident Luis Guillermo Benitez will be the office’s director. A six-time Everest climber, professional guide, and former executive at Vail Resorts, Benitez will help grow the office into a statewide advocacy, resource, and support organization for companies in the outdoor recreation industry, the Denver Post reports.
“Colorado is in a strong position to lead the outdoor recreation industry on many levels,” Benitez said in the press release. “And this office will be the start of creating, not only the collective voice for the outdoor community in our state, but also starting to craft the collaborative vision for the future of the outdoor recreation industry in Colorado.”