Borgal, Lorne

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Borgal, Lorne

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Dates of existence

fl. June 1980-


Lorne Borgal arrived in Whistler in June 1980, fresh off an MBA from Stanford University, driving up from California within days of graduating. He had been hired by Hugh Smythe to help manage Blackcomb Mountain. As he recalled, “from accounting, marketing, sales, to any of the operating entities, ski patrol, lift operations or anything to be ready for opening day, on the operating side fell to me.” He completed a wide range of tasks, from wireing the telephone lines himself when BC-Tel was on strike to having to play traffic cop to help skiers get home to Vancouver after a busy day on the slopes. After three seasons, Lorne felt ready to move on, but while on vacation in Europe, he received a phone call from Whistler Mountain marketing executive Mike Hurst informing Lorne that Franz Wilhelmsen was retiring, and Lorne was being considered as his replacement as Whistler Mountain president. Lorne happily accepted the new job, and for the next six years he oversaw the mountain during a period of intense competition with the upstart Blackcomb. He was at the helm of major projects such as the construction of Pika’s Restaurant (Whistler’s first proper on-mountain eatery), the visionary installations of the original Peak Chair and the Village Gondola, leading international trade missions to expand the resort’s global reach, and updating Whistler Mountain’s management and customer service to keep up with a rapidly changing world. Since leaving Whistler Mountain, Lorne has served as an executive for a global software company, president of two other resorts, and continues to consult globally for upstart ski resorts around the world. His contributions to Whistler are most notably recognized in the Whistler alpine, where Bagel Bowl refers to a playful nickname of his, “the Lone Bagel.”



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Former COO of Whistler Mountain

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Dates of creation, revision and deletion

Revised October 10, 2018.




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