|By Jason Blevins, The Denver Post|
Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News
Aug. 6, 2004 - John Norton, president and chief executive of Crested Butte Mountain Resort, has resigned after a little more than two years at the helm of the ski area.
He's leaving the day-to-day stuff for someone else while he launches a business consulting firm that will help the resort pursue aggressive plans for expansion and upgrade.
"On one hand I won't have to worry if the toilet paper rolls are full in the bathroom, but on the other hand, I'll probably still be thinking about that," said Norton, 48, who left Aspen Skiing Co. in 2002 to return to the Crested Butte hill where he worked from 1985 to 1991.
In the late 1980s, Norton campaigned for a new base area and an expansion of the ski area onto the intermediate slopes of nearby Snodgrass Mountain.
Local opposition killed those plans, and the ski area languished with diminishing visits and financially struggling owners.
Now, with Vermont resort developers Tim and Diane Mueller as the new owners of the ski area, the expansion and development plans are back.
Norton will help the Muellers shepherd the Snodgrass expansion and a sweeping redevelopment of the Mt. Crested Butte town center and base village through the local approval process.
"The community here has grown to respect John as a straight shooter and I think it is imperative that his association with CBMR (Crested Butte Mountain Resort) continues," said Woodie Sprouse, the former mayor of Mt. Crested Butte and a 14-year resident of the valley.
Norton and a partner will soon open their consulting firm in Crested Butte. The unnamed firm has already enlisted nonskiing business clients in several states and will help those businesses increase efficiency and hone goals, Norton said.
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