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Press Releases

Diane Van Deren Named Adventurer of the Year

National Geographic Adventure awards The North Face endurance runner with prestigious honor, rounding out her stellar 2009

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The North Face, the world’s premier supplier of authentic, innovative and technically advanced outdoor apparel, equipment and footwear, today announced Running Team athlete Diane Van Deren has been honored as one of National Geographic Adventure’s Adventurers of the Year.

Adventurer of the Year is awarded to individuals who excel in exploration, conservation, action sports and humanitarian work. The Adventurer of the Year award culminates a stellar 2009 for Van Deren. She began the year winning the Yukon Arctic Ultra in February, touted as the world’s coldest and toughest footrace. Van Deren covered 430 miles in a punishing arctic environment, placing fifth overall, first female, thus nabbing the title of first woman to complete this feat.

“Being recognized by National Geographic Adventure magazine as an Adventurer of The Year, is an honor and a reflection of the passion and drive one must have to push yourself beyond the limit of what you think is possible,” said Van Deren. “I am so thrilled and excited to be receiving this award.”

This summer, she broke her personal record at the Hardrock 100 Endurance Run, Colorado, and placed third female in the Bighorn Trail 100 Mile Endurance Run, Wyoming, and in the Canadian Death Race, Canada. She placed fourth overall in The North Face 100 2009 Outdoor Endurance Challenge in China.

In July, Van Deren graced the front page of The New York Times, in a feature focusing on her running, her brain surgery, goals and inspiration. In 2009 she was also featured on the BBC and ABC News radio networks.

“Diane is an inspiration not just to elite runners and enthusiasts, but to our entire company,” said Aaron Carpenter, Vice President of Marketing for The North Face. “Her constant energy and enthusiasm sets the bar for many athletes and employees. The North Face is proud to be aligned with such an inspiring and motivated athlete.”

For the first time, readers will have the opportunity to vote on their favorite of the honorees for the Reader’s Choice Award, to be announced Tuesday, January 19, 2010. Other honorees of the award include Marc Hoffmeister, Stephen Bouey, Steven Shoppman, Kahdija Bahram, Katey Walter Anthony, Louie Psihoyos and John Grunsfeld. To vote for the Reader’s Choice Award and to learn more about Adventurer of the Year, check out

For more than 40 years The North Face has teamed up with the world’s finest endurance adventurers, mountaineers, alpinists, climbers, skiers and snowboarders who have defined the limits of what is humanly possible. The North Face Athlete team works closely with Research, Design & Development, creating innovative designs that push new technologies and inspire cutting-edge products. For information on The North Face Endurance Team and where they’ll be next, head to

About The North Face®
The North Face, a division of VF Outdoor, Inc., was founded in 1968. Headquartered in San Leandro, California, the company offers the most technically advanced products in the market to accomplished climbers, mountaineers, snowsport athletes, endurance athletes, and explorers. The company’s products are sold in specialty mountaineering, backpacking, running, and snowsport retailers, premium-sporting goods retailers and major outdoor specialty retail chains.