Teton Adaptive Sports (TAS) was formed in the spring of 2005 in Teton County and is the first non-profit in Wyoming to be associated as a chapter with Disabled Sports/USA. Our mission is to promote and support sports and recreation opportunities for people with disabilities living in and visiting the Greater Teton Area. Headquartered in Jackson Hole, Teton Adaptive Sports is centered in a region known for endless outdoor adventures. TAS was initially created as a support organization for the Adaptive Ski Programs at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort and Grand Targhee Resort; to provide funding for adaptive ski equipment, instructor training, and financial assistance for individuals taking adaptive ski lessons. The summer of 2008 marked efforts by Teton Adaptive Sports to encourage and assist with the development of year round adaptive opportunities. Our model is to partner with existing recreation providers to enhance their ability to deliver a quality experience, while developing our own “in house” possibilities. We are in the business of growing and enhancing opportunities. The core TAS belief is that active participation in sports and recreation promotes individuals’ physical strength, develops confidence and self esteem, forges relationships, and contributes to a level of enjoyment and quality of life that otherwise might not be experienced. And then there’s the fun part…
Disabled Sports/USA was formed in 1967 by a group of disabled Vietnam veterans and is dedicated to the promotion of sports and recreation for people with disabilities. The organization is a nationwide network of community based chapters that serve over 60,000 people with year round activities and competitions. In addition DS/USA has been designated the lead agency to provide sports rehabilitation for permanently disabled service members through the Wounded Warrior Disabled Sports Project. DS/USA is a nonprofit, tax exempt, educational organization and is sponsored primarily by corporate grants and donations from the private sector.
Executive Director Kurt Henry first began working with people with developmental disabilities in the early 1970’s while earning a degree in Psychology and the Humanities at Ohio University. Over the years, Kurt has worked in the classroom, residential programs and vocational programs, but prefers the recreational arena. He worked as a therapeutic wilderness instructor for 15 years and has been involved with the adaptive ski program at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort for the past 20 years, as an instructor and program supervisor. He is one of the TAS founders. Kurt and his family have lived in Jackson, Wyoming for 30 years and he adamantly believes in the magic of the Tetons
Summer Program Manager Ryan Burke discovered adaptive sports through volunteering for Maine Handicapped Skiing at Sunday River Resort. His interest in disabled athletes and their never ending capabilities grew from there. His first job after graduating from Hamilton College was as an adaptive ski instructor. In the winter of 2007, Ryan took over as the operations manager for the adaptive ski program at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort. During the summer months, Ryan has fine tuned his outdoor skills by leading backcountry hiking and rafting trips in Alaska, Thailand, and Europe. He is now putting those skills to work at Teton Adaptive Sports.