Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In


Press Releases

Grassroots Outdoor Alliance builds on data and communications strengths with new hires, new roles

Get access to everything we publish when you sign up for Outside+.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Asheville, N.C.) — Grassroots Outdoor Alliance, the collaborative strategic network of independent outdoor specialty retailers, is making key promotions to their internal team and adding new staff roles to bolster their data and communications capabilities.

Promotions include Dana Howe, who will now serve as Grassroots Director of Membership and Education, an expansion of her previous role to now manage all membership including vendors; and Hope Buttitta, who will grow her role as Grassroots Director of Operations and Finance to oversee both data and business analysis.

“While Grassroots executes at nearly every level through a broad team effort, building out the roles of Dana and Hope will specifically help our ongoing efforts to break down the communication barriers that exist between shops and vendors, and will also further solidify the role of data within our operations,” said Rich Hill, president of Grassroots Outdoor Alliance.

Another key staffing note is the return of Devaki Murch, Grassroots Connect trade show manager, who has resumed full-time efforts ahead of next fall’s Connect buying event in Kansas City. The November show will be the first gathering of the Grassroots retail community in two years, and is anticipating record attendance of both retailers and vendors.

Grassroots is also announcing the hiring of O’Ryan Lovins, who joins the internal team in early May in the new position of Data and Business Analyst. Previously, Lovins was a data analyst and buyer for GearHead Outfitters, Camping World, and Rock/Creek Outfitters.

A second new position, Vendor Relations Manager, is currently in the hiring process. Both new positions were created following the departure of vice president Gabe Maier, who left the group in late April to pursue new career opportunities. Interested applicants are encouraged to submit their materials at

“It was certainly hard to say goodbye to a valued team member, but it has also provided Grassroots with an opportunity to strengthen some of our key strategic initiatives,” added Hill.



Grassroots Outdoor Alliance is a collaborative strategic network of 93 independent retailers with 195 retail locations in 46 states, working together for the health and growth of specialty independent outdoor retail. Through data collection and analysis, direct member support, specialty events and deep vendor partnerships, Grassroots Outdoor Alliance is creating both a vision and roadmap for the long-term success of independent specialty retail. Grassroots Outdoor Alliance is also recognized as a catalyst for the success of its retailers and vendor partners; an advocate for specialty independent retail; a promoter of education and community within the specialty channel; and a key influencer of the national outdoor industry. For more information on Grassroots Outdoor Alliance, please go to


Grassroots Connect is an ideally timed, invitation-only buying show for the specialty outdoor industry hosted by Grassroots Outdoor Alliance. Scheduled as early as possible in the buying cycle, Connect provides a highly efficient opportunity for retailers, reps and vendors to present, discuss, plan and collect pre-season orders. Cost-effective and simple, Connect is both an incubator and testing ground for the greater outdoor industry. Invited retailers receive a per attendee reimbursement to offset their travel costs. The next Grassroots Connect will be held Nov. 8-11, 2021 (Kansas City, Mo.).