Bill’s Banff Film Festival Summit Experience

Bill’s Banff Film Festival Summit Experience

The Banff Mountain Film Festival and World Tour is the largest environmental Film Festival in the world. To say that we were delighted when they chose Tom’s of Maine as a sponsor to the event this year is an understatement. As the first personal care sponsor the Film Festival has taken on, initially it may be hard to see the connection, however, our corporate culture and values are so directly aligned that it seemed to be a perfect match. Our own Supply Chain Manufacturing Leader, Bill Hetzel attended The Banff Mountain Film Festival Sponsor Summit to represent Tom’s of Maine and our commitment to sustainability, community, and environment. Here, he and the other sponsors discussed their support and passion for the arts and the outdoors as they experienced physical challenges for the reward of beautiful scenery and self accomplishment… Below, Bill tells his story…

Skiiers blasting off a mountain precipice in explosions of powder

A kayaker bouncing through haystacks of whitewater in a remote gorge

A family of elusive snow leopards prowling rocky slopes in Pakistan

These are the exhilarating outdoor adventure images recently featured at the Banff Mountain Film Festival and World Tour. Tom’s of Maine sponsored the 2010 event because of its connection to goodness.

The Banff Centre helps to mentor budding filmmakers in the areas of audio, video and remastering with the help of their experienced faculty and high-quality facilities. The film festival brings together artists and audiences who share a love of mountain adventure and a respect for the environment and culture. Transportation, food service, and written materials for this event are all run with green principles in mind.

After the event, the films go on tour to 30 countries and 560 screenings. Many of the tour hosts sponsor goodness by donating proceeds to nearby land conservation organizations or other local causes.

I was lucky enough to connect into the Banff Mountain goodness last week at the sponsor summit. Representatives of all the sponsors met to discuss the film festival and the greater benefit of our partnership. But we did it in true Banff fashion. No conference room. We hiked and snowshoed 11 km through a pass in the Alberta Canadian Rockies to the remote Skoki Lodge. No electricity, no running water, but lots of breathtaking mountains and shared values.

For me, the theme that emerged was respect for individual choice. Everyone has a favorite adventure film, a favorite extreme sport, a favorite charitable cause, and even a favorite toothpaste flavor! We come together to share common passions and common beliefs, but we also respect the diversity of each person. We even demonstrated this theme as we hiked back 11 km through the snow and mountains to finish our sponsor summit and return to our lives – we each went our own pace spread out along the trail, but gathered at the end for one final group hug.

In the spirit of Bill’s adventure we welcome your stories about a favorite adventure, charitable cause, and even your favorite toothpaste flavor…We love to learn about what our friends are passionate about, and look forward to hearing from you. To learn more about the Banff Mountain Film Festival and World Tour Click Here

Photos by: Bill Hetzel, 2010

Banff Mountain

Banff Bill

Banff Goat