OSI Staff

Josh Firmin

Team Head Coach & Initiative Coordinator

Growing up in southwest New Hampshire, Josh was exposed to the wonders of the outdoors at a young age. Family fishing trips, night skiing at the local rope tow, and biking on dusty back roads all helped to solidify a strong connection with nature and the outdoors.

 

After high school, Josh attended the University of Maine, Orono where he was actively involved n outdoor leadership development and trip leading with Maine Bound, the University’s out- door education program.

 

After graduating from UMaine in 2008, Josh set his sights on the big skies and deep snow of the northern Rocky Mountains around Bozeman, Montana. During this time, Josh worked as a youth ski instructor, raft guide, and production associate for Mystery Ranch Backpacks.

 

Even with all of the wonderful recreation opportunities available, he could not resist the siren song of Maine. Returning to Maine, Josh brings an infectious enthusiasm for the outdoors and a wealth of experience to share. He is a registered Maine Guide, Wilderness First Responder. and ACA Whitewater Kayak Instructor.

Erin Fay

Team Head Coach & Initiative Coordinator

Erin grew up in and on the water of the Belgrade Lakes Region in Maine and has spent much of her life exploring the Maine outdoors. She returned to Maine in 2013 after graduating from the University of Vermont with a degree in Political Science and Community Development.

 

She is a registered Maine Sea Kayak Guide, Recreation Guide, Wilderness First Responder, and a Kripalu Certified Yoga Instructor. Erin has a huge passion for the Maine outdoors and its abundance of life-long activities, and loves to share her passion with others.

 

 

Justin Fereshetian

Team Head Coach & Initiative Coordinator

Justin has lived in Maine since the age of 5 and started skiing when he was 8.  During high school he helped his Leavitt Hornets win 3 consecutive Class A State team titles and was the individual classic state champion his senior year. Following high school Justin spent a post-graduate year racing for the MWSC, during which he represented New England at Junior National Championships.

 

The following year he began his collegiate racing career with the University of Maine at Presque Isle's (UMPI) division I ski program. Along with skiing, Justin has a background in running. He started competing in USATF track meets at the age of 7 and went on to be competitive at the high school and collegiate levels with Leavitt and UMPI.

 

Prior to taking on his current role as one of the Head Coaches for Team OSI, Justin was an assistant coach in the program and quickly earned the respect of the staff and athletes for his dedication to his athletes, his humility and his work ethic. As a coach, his goal is not to simply make his athletes better skiers, but to help them build the skills they'll need to succeed in life.

Brian Threlkeld

Team Storyteller

Brian grew up in Minnesota, getting his first taste of adventure and outdoor sport by canoeing through the Boundary Waters at an early age. After high school, he road-tripped for months on end, climbing rocks and sleeping in the dirt before making his way to Alaska for college. After exploring the last frontier for 5 years, he made his way to Maine and has called it home ever since. He comes from a teaching background and has been a photographer and creative all along the way.

 

When not out in the backcountry, Brian loves living a pretty simple live in Portland with his partner, Anna, and her son, Arlo. One of his favorite things to do is go grocery shopping with his Xtracycle, and if you don’t know what that is, look it up and get one! They’re the best and so much fun!

 

 

Erin Jackson

Communications Manager

Since graduating from the University of New Hampshire with a dual major in Business Administration and EcoGastronomy, Erin has gone on to hold an array of positions in outdoor education, business development, and investment banking. She found her passion in empowering youth and helping organizations build sustainable business strategies.

 

Erin was the captain of the UNH women’s soccer team, where she developed her knowledge and appreciation of experiential education, teamwork, and mentorship. Upon graduating, she sought ways to bring these values to her community.

 

Erin has always had an affinity for exploring the natural world and the diversity of people whom call different places home. She has also developed a passion for rock climbing, backcountry snowboarding, and sailing. These pursuits brought her to live, work, and travel in places such as; Costa Rica, Patagonia, Ghana, Italy, Colorado, Martha’s Vineyard, and many more!  Erin discovered Midcoast Maine while on a sailing trip with friends and fell in love with the community and natural beauty. She moved to the area in May of 2016. She is excited to empower the youth of Maine through outdoor sports that foster learning, mentorship, and most importantly – fun!

Kyle Folsom

Office Manager

Kyle was born and raised in Presque Isle Maine. His parents were summer camp counselors and physical education teachers, giving him a love for the outdoors and athletics. A degree in Economics from St. Lawrence University created an opportunity for exploration into business management.

 

After working in New York in property and construction management Kyle returned to Maine, working as an independent contractor for over a decade and developing the skills necessary to succeed in business.

 

He brings to OSI a strong work ethic, a love for being active, and a commitment to excellence that will encourage success and offer support for all people and programs involved. He currently lives in Presque Isle with his young family and hopes to instill in them the same connection to the community through outdoor activity that he was provided.

Mike Smith

Chief Operating Officer & Program Director

Mike is an Aroostook County native who attended the University of Maine, Orono. Upon graduating he immersed himself in the field of outdoor education, outdoor sport, teaching, and guiding. He has worked as a whitewater kayak instructor and raft guide in the Southeastern U.S., sea kayak guide on the coast of Maine, whitewater kayak guide in Central America, a cross-country ski coach, in northern Maine, and backcountry ski instructor and trip leader in the northeast.

 

Prior to joining OSI Mike worked as an outdoor educator for the University of Maine, and then manager of a small bike and ski shop in Presque Isle, ME. In those roles he implemented a variety of outdoor programs focused on paddling, skiing and mountain biking. Mike shares his love for the outdoors in his capacity as Program Director and Chief Operating Officer of OSI.

 

Mike is a registered Maine Guide, registered Maine Sea Kayak Guide, ACA Whitewater Kayak Instructor Trainer, Swiftwater Rescue Instructor, BICP L1 Mountain Bike Ride Guide, and Wilderness First Responder.

Andy Shepard

President/Chief Executive Officer

Andy spent 16 years at L.L.Bean in Freeport, Maine working on strategies, products and services to inspire people to spend time outdoors. While at L.L.Bean Andy developed a strategy to create a new economic and cultural model for Northern Maine, which became the Maine Winter Sports Center (MWSC) in the Spring of 1999.

 

Over the next 17 years the MWSC evolved into a globally respected, year-round, statewide organization that used the challenge inherent in the outdoors and outdoor sport to preparing kids and adults for the challenges in life. But by 2016, what started out focused on getting people in Northern Maine on skis had also evolved into so much more. It needed a new name that more accurately reflected that evolution—the Outdoor Sport Institute.

 

Andy was named the Outstanding Non-Profit Business Executive for Maine in 2010, recipient of the Russell Wilder Award by the US Ski and Snowboard Association in 2009 and was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Maine in 2005. He carries forward the culture of excellence with the Outdoor Sport Institute.

 

Andy is co-founder, Vice Chairman and trustee of the United States Biathlon Foundation and past trustee of Carrabassett Valley Academy and Pineland Farms.

OSI STAFF
OSI STAFF