Facebook Post: August 28, 2020
I would like to introduce myself as the new Admin to the Phoenix Climbing Scene. I have been climbing for over 50 years. I grew up in a small town near the center of the State of Pennsylvania. From when I was 5 or so I was climbing at Bilger’s Rocks and Mape’s farm. A school teacher, my father was a part-time climbing guide who took his family with him on many guiding trips, so as a young child I learned the beauty of mountains, rock, snow and ice. When I moved to Arizona in 1978 I was professor at ASU. After I gained tenure, I moved to the University of Alabama as a tenured Associate Dean but then returned to the private sector in the Phoenix area in 1987 and have lived here since.
My main focus has been mountaineering, with climbs of over 200 mountains in the North America and Europe. I am an “older guy” but still rock and ice climb. My latest big project was the West Ridge of Forbidden Peak in the State of Washington, alpine rock and ice, 5.6.
I joined the AMC in the early 1990’s and served in a variety of capacities with that organization, including being President. I continue to serve the AMC as its Land Advocacy Chair and its Mountaineering Chair. I have been involved in most local climbing access issues, and am on the Board of the Queen Creek Coalition.
I was a McDowell Sonoran Preserve Commissioner and helped establish what we now see as the McDowell Sonoran Preserve. I was personally responsible for the rock climbing planning there and have been the Climbing Liaison to City staff. My significant other Cheryl Beaver and I wrote the guidebook to the Preserve, McDowell Rock: A Climber’s Guide.
Nowadays I see my major role in the climbing community now as a mentor and gain much pleasure seeing the younger climbers do things that I could only imagine for myself. It is because of the “generativity” that I want to continue to build the climbing community and hope to contribute thereby in this new role.