Luke Jacobson was in college in Reno, Nevada, when a friend told him about a guy named Casey Hakansson, who worked as a mason but was also building skis in a small snowboard factory in town. Jacobson showed up at the factory one day and asked if he could work for free. “My intention was to learn how to make skis so I could eventually go and get a job working at a ski company,” Jacobson says. He never left.
Together, the two guys built Moment Skis, an independent ski brand launched in 2005 that still makes its skis on U.S. soil in the company’s factory outside Reno. Hakansson recently stepped away from the brand to run another company, and Jacobson, who officially became Moment’s CEO in 2016, is now at the helm. Today, Moment makes several thousand pairs of skis each year, having doubled production in 2017 from the year prior. Not to mention that on February 21, halfpipe skier and Reno resident David Wise won an Olympic gold medal on a pair of Moments.
I called up Jacobson while he was working a ski grinder to talk about his secrets to being a good boss and what a skier does during a low-snow winter. Read the full interview here.