Panamanian prisoner. Power broker. Himalayan avalanche survivor. And now Patagonia‘s VP of Environmental Affairs. We got to break the ice with legendary mountaineer and conservationist Rick Ridgeway (aka “The real Indiana Jones”), who wanted to tell us about the importance of managing risks – not taking them – and the uselessness of despair.
Also an environmentalist, writer and filmmaker, Ridgeway has walked from the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro to the Indian Ocean and hauled a rickshaw 275 miles across a Tibetan plateau, one of the world’s remotest places – just to prove a point to the Chinese government.
► Just don’t buy his jacket.
The legendary adventurer didn’t get his first ‘real job’ until 12 years ago (not the only reason we applaud him). Life as a mountaineer (he was one of the first Americans to ascend Pakistan’s K2) has prepared him well for his role at Patagonia as their Vice President of Environmental Affairs. Rick’s team implement the company’s mission statement to “cause no unnecessary harm and use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.” They even ask people not to buy their stuff, taking transparency to the extreme. All these things and more make Rick Ridgeway a legend.