Episode 01

Summit: A History

By Whitewall
Whitewall Presents, February 20, 2019
Chapter 1

The Beginning

The Summit Mountain Series Winter Jam II takes place March 1—3, 2019, bringing together a select group of 125 people for a weekend of talks, performances, workshops, experiences, and, of course, skiing. It takes place at Powder Mountain, Summit’s mountain ski community in Eden, Utah.

In advance of Winter Jam II, we’re taking a look back at the organization’s biggest milestones over the past decade.

Summit—founded in 2008 by Elliott Bisnow, Brett Leve, Jeff Rosenthal, Jeremy Schwartz, and Ryan Begelman as a way to connect with like-minded young entrepreneurs and creatives—designs year-round experiences that connect, educate, and inspire today’s brightest leaders. Through a series of invitation-only events, they work to foster a global community of entrepreneurs, artists, and creatives to affect positive change in the world.

SummitCourtesy of Summit.

2008: Summit in Park City, Utah

The first-ever Summit event was a 19-person ski trip. The founders maxed out their credit cards to fund the trip and recuperated costs afterward, based on how successful and enjoyable that first event was.

Courtesy of Summit.

2009: Summit at the White House in D.C.

Less than a year later, the Obama administration reached out and asked Summit to curate a meeting around the “State of Technology” between senior officials and 35 young entrepreneurs.

SummitCourtesy of Summit.

2011: The first Summit at Sea in Miami, FL

The first Summit at Sea took 1100 people to a destination unknown via a chartered ocean liner for a series of moving talks, music, and intellectual events. Keynote speakers and performers included Richard Branson, Peter Thiel, and The Roots.

SummitCourtesy of Summit.

2012: Powder Mountain in Eden, Utah

The founders of Summit launched sister company Powder Mountain by purchasing the largest ski resort—by skiable acres—in North America to build a year-round community focused on the values of Summit.

Chapter 1 — Noteworthy

Summit

The first-ever Summit event was a 19-person ski trip in 2008.

Courtesy of Summit.

Less than a year later, the Obama administration reached out and asked Summit to curate a meeting around the “State of Technology.”

Summit

The first Summit at Sea in 2011 featured keynote speakers Richard Branson, Peter Thiel, and The Roots.

Chapter 2

Summit Finds its Home

Summit
Courtesy of Summit.

After five years of exciting events all over the world, Summit worked to build a home on Powder Mountain, and over the next five years, continued to foster its mission of creating a community that embraced the unexpected, encouraged connections, and promoted the act of being present, all while not taking anything too seriously.

SummitCourtesy of Summit.

2013: Summit Outside in Eden, Utah

The inaugural event, after the purchase of Powder Mountain, featured 800 people, a pop-up town constructed from scratch at 6000 feet elevation, and the longest seated dinner Summit has ever hosted.

SummitCourtesy of Summit.

2015: Summit Tulum in Tulum, Mexico

Summit launched a more intimate event series, Summit Tulum, bringing together 400 people with full hotel takeovers, stages constructed on the beach, and wellness- and culinary-oriented programming.

SummitCourtesy of Summit.

2016: Summit China in Shanghai, China

Summit hosted 400 of China’s top business entrepreneurs and executives in Shanghai. Kobe Bryant was the feature keynote speaker.

SummitCourtesy of Summit.

2016: Summit at Sea Returns in the Bahamas

Back by popular demand, Summit at Sea returned with 3000 people on a chartered ocean liner from Miami to the Bahamas. Quentin Tarantino interviewed Kendrick Lamar for the keynote presentation.

SummitCourtesy of Summit.

2017: Summit L.A. in Los Angeles, CA

After years of hosting gatherings in remote, disconnected locations, Summit arrived in Downtown Los Angeles for its most ambitious project yet—to take over two-and-a-half blocks of dense urban infrastructure to build a pop-up city. Jeff Bezos, Malcolm Gladwell, and Jane Fonda, among others, keynoted. Summit LA will be returning this November 8 for its third installment.

SummitCourtesy of Summit.

2018: First homes finish at Powder Mountain, Eden, Utah

After five years of paving roads, building infrastructure, and sourcing power, the first set of custom homes were completed with Summit community members now able to ski, live, and host on top of Powder Mountain.

Chapter 2 — Noteworthy

Summit

Summit Outside took place in 2013 in Eden, Utah, featuring 800 people to inaugurate the location of Powder Mountain.

Summit

After years of hosting gatherings in remote, disconnected locations, Summit arrived in Downtown Los Angeles for its most ambitious project yet, Summit L.A. in 2017.

Summit

In 2018, the first homes finish at Powder Mountain in Eden, Utah.

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