What a year it’s been!!  So many remarkable things have happened in 2014.  We, along with our clients, have grown a lot in 2014, both professionally and personally.  As we reflect on the past year, we know whole-heartedly that the commitment to excellence, ingenuity in sports and entertainment, hard work, and dedication to what we do is all worth it!

There have been Olympic, World and National Championship medals, monumental accomplishments, awe-inspiring performances, marriages, new clients and even new babies to the Shade Global family.

Just some of the 2014 highlights:

Devin Logan, a freestyle skier and three time X Games medalist, competed in her first Olympics in 2014, winning a Silver medal in Ski Slopestyle, an event that made its debut as an Olympic sport.  Devin had a major knee injury followed by surgery in late 2012 forcing her to sit out most of the season, but with her eye on the Olympics, she became a judge to better understand the sport while she was unable to ski. She worked hard to come back strong, took a top spot on the slopestyle team, landed atop the podium in Sochi!  As a first time Olympic event, Devin made history as the first-ever silver medalist in ski slopestyle.

Erin Hamlin, a three-time Olympian and World Champion, made history at the 2014 Sochi Olympics when she won a Bronze Medal, becoming the first American ever (male or female) to win an individual medal in luge, and the first ever woman to win an Olympic luge medal for the U.S.  The reception to Erin’s accomplishments has been widely recognized and she truly played a big role in changing the face of sliding sports on the international scene. Following the Olympics, Erin was honored with The Best of U.S.- Best Female Athlete Award, honoring the most inspiring accomplishments and outstanding performances of Team USA at the 2014 Games.  Erin has not slowed down since.  She won her sixth National Championship title before heading out for the 2014-2015 World Cup season, on which she has already won five medals, including silver and bronze World Cup medals at the World Cup in Lake Placid.

Nick Goepper, the 2013 and 2014 X Games Champion in freestyle skiing, won a Bronze medal at the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games in ski slopestyle, an event that made its debut as an Olympic sport in Sochi.  Nick’s bronze medal wan was part of the U.S. men’s ski slopestyle podium sweep, in which he and his U.S. teammates won all three medals.  This historical milestone is widely recognized as one of the highlights of the 2014 Olympic Games. In April, Nick and his two Olympic podium teammates were nominated for a Best of the U.S. Award for “Best Moment” with Men’s Ski Slopestyle podium sweep, a first time Olympic event. Nick also kicked off his 2015 ski season with a Bronze medal at the Dew Tour in Breckenridge, CO.

Steve Langton, a two-time 2014 Olympic bobsled Bronze medalist and two-time World Champion, who has been the “heart throb” of the 2014 Olympics, along with Steven Holcomb won a Bronze medal in 2-man bobsled- the first medal in men’s 2-man since 1952!  Steve also competed in the 4-man event (Team “Night Train”) and won a second bronze medal, making history as the first time the U.S. had ever won Olympic medals in both 2 and 4-man at the same Olympics.  His youngest brother, Chris, was actually an alternate member of the 2014 Olympic bobsled team as well.  Steven Langton and his “Night Train” sled were nominated for a Best of the U.S. Award as “Best Team” as part of USA Men’s Bobsled. Steve took some time off from bobsled this fall, but he is back and the gym training for his next adventure.

Nastia Liukin, 2008 Olympic Gymnastics All-Around Champion, continues to excel at everything she does.  Retired from the sport as a competitor, Nastia leads the gymnastics world as an ambassador for Team USA.  Nastia made a big leap this year and is expanding her role as a television commentator for various events, including the 2014 American Cup and U.S. National Championships for NBC broadcasts and she was also a special correspondent for NBC Olympics for the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia. She was inducted into the USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame in August of 2014 as well as being named the spokeswoman for the USOC “Road To Rio” campaign. Nastia is also flourishing as an NYU student, where she is studying sports management.

Jamie Greubel won the Bronze medal in bobsled at the 2014 Sochi Olympics with Aja Evans at her first Olympic Games, making history as this was the first time two U.S. sleds had ever won medals at the same Olympic Games.  Part of the U.S. Women’s Bobsled “Wolfpack,” Jamie and her teammates became a staple image of the Games.  Jamie truly had a breakout year prior to the Games, consistently winning several World Cup medals and placing third overall on the 2013-2014 World Cup circuit.  In a year filled with highlights, the icing on the cake for Jamie was marrying her boyfriend Christian Poser, who is an Olympic bobsledder himself for Germany.  As of the beginning of the 2014-2015 World Cup season, Jamie has already won two medals and ,with her new brakeman, is sure to be a star again this season.

David Boudia, the 2012 Olympic Diving Gold medalist is in full force training for Rio 2016. He has had a life changing year in 2014 starting with the birth of his first child, Dakoda Boudia, born on September 10, 2014. Not only did he and his wife, Sonnie Boudia,  start their family this year, but David has also been continuing to compete throughout the year, bringing home the Bronze medal at the FINA World Series in the 10-meter platform as well at the Bronze medal at the FINA World Cup in the 3-meter synchro. David plans to compete in the FINA World Series and US National Championships in 2015 with his goal being his 3rd Olympic Games in Rio 2016.

Chellsie Memmel, 2008 Olympic Silver Medal Gymnast, is now retired from her competitive career but is still very involved in the sport.  Chellsie finished her certifications to serve as a judge for USA Gymnastics and international gymnastics competitions while also coaching at her home gym in Wisconsin.  Keeping in line with a gymnastics family tradition, her youngest sister recently committed to compete at Central Michigan University next year.  Most importantly, the stork is circling the block!  Chellsie and her husband, Kory, are expecting their first baby in February.

Marlen Esparza, is among one of the newest athletes to join the Shade Global family. In the debut of women’s boxing at the 2012 London Olympic Games, Marlen brought home the bronze medal. She has since moved to the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, CO and is now coached by USA Boxing’s, Pedro Roque. She has also kept her U.S. National Championship winning streak alive by taking the title in both 2013 and 2014, amounting to 10 National Championships under her belt. A monumental point in her career came when she took home the Gold medal at the 2014 Women’s World Championships for the first time in her career and she is now focused on Gold in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

Jen Bricker is the only non-Olympic athlete on our roster, but her inspiration is just as great! Jen is a motivational speaker, aerialist, and acrobat that was born without legs, given up for adoption, and found out later in life that her biological sister was none other than Olympic gymnast, Dominique Moceanu. Jen has traveled the world telling her inspirational story and performing aerial silks on some of the biggest stages. Stay tuned to hear so exciting news from Jen in 2015!

Ayden Uhlir, 6-time North American Dressage Champion, has had a whirlwind of a year. She is the first ever Equestrian athlete to be signed to Nike, which has made a huge splash in the horse world! Ayden has also recently picked up and moved from Carlsbad, California to Wellington, Florida to train at Hampton Green Farms with her 4-legged partner, Sjapoer. Her 2015 competition season will start up in just a few short weeks as she has her eye on Rio 2016.

Our incredible clients, what a year!! We can’t wait for 2015!  We are honored and proud to work with some unbelievably talented athletes and most importantly, fine individuals.  They continue to inspire us with their accomplishments both inside and outside of the competitive arena.

To our dear friends at Citi, P&G, Nike, Kellogg’s, DeVry, United, Tumbl-Trak, Deloitte, Red Bull, The North Face, BMW, Volkl, Giro, GoPro, JIF, Kicker, Vail Resorts, Smith Optics, Coca-Cola, Monster, SONY, Subway, Varsity, USA Gymnastics, USA Luge, US Bobsled and Skeleton, US Freeskiing, USA Diving,  Women’s Sports Foundation, USOC, NBC, it has been a pleasure working with you, as always, and we look forward to our continued relationship through the years.

With Rio 2016 just around the corner, we’re very excited to jump in to the swing of things and begin all of the planning and preparations for the next Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  Time will fly by and Rio 2016 will be here before you know it.

As we close the door on the incredible year that was 2014, we’re anxiously looking forward to all of the excitement, promise and opportunity that lay ahead of us in 2015!  Stay tuned to our website and twitter (@shadeglobal) for new and exciting updates that will be announced very soon!

Wishing you all a year full of peace, happiness, health, and success.  Happy 2015!!