EAST BURKE, VT (APRIL 27, 2015): Burke Mountain Academy announces the return of Tomas Karlsson to lead BMA’s Alpine Program. Karlsson, who was the Men’s Head Coach of the Swedish National Team last season, will assume the new position of Program Director at BMA and will oversee the alpine coaching staff. Jeff Fergus, a former US Ski Team coach and the primary coach for Lindsey Vonn for a number of seasons, will work with the Post Graduate Men’s Group next year.
Karlsson has an extensive leadership background in the sport and in addition to serving as the Head Men’s coach of the Swedish National Team last year he has served as Sweden’s Head Women’s coach, the overall Swedish National Team Program Director and three years as Head Coach of the US Ski Team during his career. Karlsson’s history with BMA includes two years as Program Director in the early 1990’s before joining the US Team, and a year as an exchange student in the 1980’s after he finished racing on the Swedish National team.
“We are delighted to have Tomas join our staff and are confident that his experience and leadership will have an immediate impact on our program,” said Kirk Dwyer, Headmaster of Burke Mountain Academy. Current head FIS coach, and head U16 coach for next year, Sam Damon added, “I am very excited to have Tomas coming on board. The strategic plan that we put in place over the summer is ambitious, and having someone like Tomas at Burke is going to make a huge impact on achieving those initiatives.”
“I still have very great memories of Burke both as a student and as a coach. Great training and great people that have influenced me over the years,” commented Karlsson. “The work ethic and strong involvement is in the DNA of the Burke community. I am very lucky having the opportunity to be part of this again.”
Karlsson’s hiring was announced in tandem with the hiring of Jeff Fergus who has extensive experience in his own right. Early in his career “Ferg” was a coach with the Park City Ski Team and then went on to a long stint with the US Ski Team where he was most notably the primary coach for Lindsey Vonn for a number of seasons. Last year, Ferg worked in association with BMA in addition to coaching a small group of Nor Am women on an independent basis.
“We are really excited to have Jeff Fergus joining our staff,” noted Dwyer. “He is a very accomplished coach and he is going to really bolster our entire program in addition to the group that he will primarily work with this season.”
The hiring of both exceptional coaches comes on the heels of Burke’s recent conclusion of a significant and very successful capital campaign. “Funding the BMA Way” has put in place an endowment in excess of $5 million that will help ensure the school’s success for years to come. “We feel that we are in a very unique position at this moment,” said Willy Booker, Chairman of the Board of Trustees. “Under Kirk’s stewardship, BMA has moved into a position of exceptional financial heath and stability and the program is thriving. The board of trustees is thrilled to see the school making aggressive moves to strive for excellence and we anticipate more to come in the near future.”