Hello my name is Finn Kavanaugh. I am 16 years old, and I am a sophomore in High School. I was born in Arvada, Colorado and have lived in this beautiful town my entire life. Growing up, I feel like I was always an adventurous kid. I always wanted to do things that pushed my limits, like flips, and I even feel that way now to this day. From the moment I was born, I started off my life crazy, having a stroke and several eye surgeries, I was working hard at life right off the bat, but I was fortunate enough to still have a good fun life even with those very early speed bumps.
From the moment I was able to walk (around 1 year old) my parents put me on skis, and I would clomp around the house with my boots, skis and goggles on. The following winter I was on real snow, and I wish I could remember my first time on skis at Loveland Ski Resort. I guess you can say that’s where I started off my ski career. From there I spent winters skiing with my family, and I don’t mean just my parents. I mean I have grown up skiing with my grandparents (I still ski with my 75 year old grandma), my aunts, my uncles, my cousins and my younger brother, who will be joining me on the Big Mountain Team this season.
I eventually started to compete in skiing when I was 13. It was after my first year of competitive Alpine Skiing, with Team Summit, that I found my true passion – Big Mountain skiing. Being able to choose your own line, and having the creativity to explore the face of a course as you please was what inspired me to make the transfer over to Big Mountain. My first year with Big Mountain was amazing! I learned new tricks, met new people and made great friends. My overall skiing improved, and I did well enough to place in the top 50% at my competitions. The following season I transitioned into a 15-18 youth skier for IFSA competitions, and I was competing with older kids. I still had a great season, with incredible growth, and even got to ski all day with some pro skiers at my home mountain, Arapahoe Basin. I also improved my overall skiing and my competitions results. Now, this coming ski season I am excited to get out there, do my best, take calculated risks, and have fun on the mountain.
My Core Values
- Adventure: Being open to trying new things and exploring uncharted territories.
- Responsibility: Taking ownership for your actions and being accountable for your decisions.
- Respect: Showing consideration for others and treating everyone with kindness and dignity, including the environment.
- Passion: Having a deep love and enthusiasm for skiing and all it entails.
- Perseverance: Being determined to push past challenges and overcome obstacles.
- Optimism: Maintaining a positive attitude even in tough times, and seeing the good in every situation.
- Fun: Enjoying every moment and finding humor in the little things.
- Community: Being part of a larger group and supporting one another through teamwork and camaraderie.
- Sustainability: Taking care of the planet and the surrounding environment, and being mindful of your impact as a skier.
Meet More Scholars
The Foundation has awarded more than 150 Adventure Scholarships to people who have a dream, believe in the Core Values Matter philosophy and were able to demonstrate financial need. Our Adventure Scholars are a distinctive group of students, athletes, and others. We believe you'll find someone here you can identify with, or perhaps you will help us make this outstanding team of individuals even more diverse and inclusive.See All Adventure Scholars