Meet the new EMXC Coaches
January 3, 2024
We are excited to introduce Chris Stock as the new Head Coach and Program Director and Avery Ellis as the new Assistant Coach and Program Director for EMXC Juniors.
Learn a little more about Chris and Avery:
What is your favorite “non-skiing” ski team memory from your career (social stuff, not training)?
Chris: Traveling with college teammates to training camps and races -- sharing big Thanksgiving meals, screening questionable cult movies, preparing interesting Carni Crush performances, and generally hanging out off campus with awesome people who share my core values.
Avery: From team dinners in the Middlebury dining hall or at team training camps to sledding during a snowstorm on the dirt roads surrounding Middlebury. Sledding: the requirements: a pickup truck, a tow-rope, a sled, a snowstorm, and an off-day from training. When all of these requirements aligned, the team would organize and drive away from the "bustling" campus and onto the less-trafficked surrounding dirt roads. Teammates took turns being towed on sleds, watching from the truck, or making snowballs in the snow banks. The laughter, exhaustion and sense of snowy adventure is a feeling I look back on fondly and strive to achieve on the ski trails with friends.
What is your favorite rest day activity?
Avery: On my rest days I love to paint. Painting is something that has always been present in my life, but that blossomed during my college years. My favorite things to paint are landscapes of moments from hiking and skiing adventures. I think all those years spent in the woods ski training has given me an eye for patterns and color in nature, and I have a lot of fun zoning out and suspending my favorite memories on canvas.
Chris: Beyond eating, sleeping, and hydrating?? Hm. I end up sending lots of emails. This winter I'm looking forward to watching World Cup races.
If you weren’t a ski Coach right now, what would you be doing?
Chris: Short answer is I'm not sure, but I love seeing the big picture, making things work better, and staying in touch with the people, purpose, and human impact of what I do. Turns out ski coaching is a great fit for those interests! My PhD is in computational neuroscience, and my last job was in data engineering and data science. A couple of my favorite endeavors in grad school were teaching a course on math and statistics and building a machine learning system and web app to help local journalists keep tabs on government proceedings.
Avery: I love that ski coaching is active, takes me to new places and allows me to be a part of an adventurous and hard working community. Being a skier and coach has certainly set some high standards in terms of community, lifestyle, and fun! It's hard to imagine giving that up. However, If I wasn’t a ski coach, I’d probably be on the hunt for a job that could meet those standards. I’d perhaps be exploring opportunities related to my major in conservation biology; minor in studio art, or something that combined the two. Alternatively, I've also always wondered where I could go if I took up mountain bike racing more seriously; maybe I'd be trying my hand at that!