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Black Diamond Strengthens Commercial Capabilities With Key Hires and Promotion

Black Diamond Equipment®, a global innovator in climbing, skiing and mountain sports equipment, is pleased to announce three new hires and one internal promotion in an effort to strengthen its commercial capabilities. Former Black Diamond employees, Heath Christensen and Tor Brown return to the company in new roles as director of sales for North America and mountain line category director, respectively. Industry veteran Matt Burbach will also join Black Diamond as its senior retail marketing manager. Internally, Glenn Ritter has been promoted to vice president of global sales operations.  

“We are excited to have Heath return to Black Diamond as he has long been a part of the BD community,” states Tim Bantle, managing director for Black Diamond Equipment. “His diverse and comprehensive sales management expertise in specialty outdoor is an ideal fit to lead our North American sales efforts.”

Christensen’s experience spans a career at Black Diamond that began as a dealer sales and service representative in 2002, to director of sales operations in 2014. Most recently, he worked at Petzl America as sport division manager where he managed top line revenue and its sales force in North America. In his new role as director of sales for North America, Christensen will manage all of Black Diamond’s retail and sales agency partners.     

“The opportunity at Black Diamond is tremendous,” comments Christensen. “I am excited to collaborate with trusted friends and continue to build Black Diamond as a brand with limitless potential.”  

After working at Nike from 2010-2015, Black Diamond also welcomes back Tor Brown as he joins the team in the position of mountain line category director. Reporting to vice president of product, Doug Heinrich, Brown will oversee Black Diamond’s mountain category business and focus on customer-centric product strategy in Black Diamond’s key product categories of lighting, trekking poles, packs and gloves. At Nike, Brown served as product line manager for sports performance bags, NFL and men’s running apparel divisions. Prior to that, he served as a ski line category manager for Black Diamond from 2007-2010.

Matt Burbach joins Black Diamond as senior retail marketing manager. While at The North Face for nearly 10 years, Burbach served as a visual merchandising coordinator and retail customer experience manager. Most recently, he worked as the senior retail brand experience manager at The North Face Asia, in Shanghai, China. Burbach, a passionate climber who was once a sponsored athlete and freelance writer, brings a wealth of industry experience that includes an emphasis on visual merchandising and in-store marketing. He will be responsible for continuing Black Diamond’s efforts to increase wholesale sell-through and developing its brand story telling in in-store environments. Burbach will report to Black Diamond’s Niclas Bornling, vice president of marketing.

Internally, Black Diamond promoted Glenn Ritter to vice president of global sales operations. In this capacity, Ritter will oversee Black Diamond’s global wholesale channel. For more than three years, Ritter has served as the vice president of supply chain for Black Diamond Inc., and was responsible for integrating Gregory, POC and Pieps into the Black Diamond platform. Prior, Ritter managed supply chain solutions and served as the general manager for Flextronics.               

“Our success is built upon innovation derived from a deep understanding of the markets we serve,” explains Bantle. “Each of these individuals brings significant experience to help lead our company and will be a cornerstone of our success.”