Wilderness First Responder
Hometown: Terre Hill, PA
School: Messiah College/Denver Seminary
Ben was born in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, where he was one of 49 grandchildren in his family. He went on to college and received a Marketing degree from Messiah College in 1988. There, he participated in soccer and track. He then went on to play professional indoor soccer for two years. Ben went back to college to pursue his Master’s degree in Youth and Family Studies at Denver Seminary. He proceeded to then use that degree to work with high school students until getting into the guest ranching industry; he has worked with guest ranches for the past 15 years. In Ben’s free time, he enjoys watching sporting events. He also enjoys spending time with his wife, Holly and the two of their four kids still at home, Annie and Jack. Chelsea will be a senior this fall at Colorado State University and Amanda is living happily with her husband, David Gillie.
Charlie has been in the Colorado area since he was 24 years old and gradually worked his way up to Clark. Charlie has been a part of the VVR team since the late-90′s and quietly keeps the ranch running as the master organizer of our team. He and his wife Barb enjoy spending time with their two grandkids, as well as road biking. Charlie rides a brown 1974 Motobécane and his wife rides a silver 1975 Motobécane. He also enjoys barbeques outside on the patio of the timber frame house he built looking out on Farwell Mountain.
Director of Hospitality
Hometown: Woodside, CA
School: UC Davis
Steph has been employed at Vista Verde since 1997, where she takes care of all things related to making your experience as wonderful as possible at the ranch. Though Steph is a California native, she has never surfed and has a distaste for fish. As a mother of two, Steph loves to spend time with her daughters, as well as ride horses, mountain bike, practice yoga, and ski. Steph’s husband is a former Olympic skier and now coaches ski jumpers in Steamboat Springs.
Bill has been around Vista Verde for almost 22 years now! In his free time, Bill enjoys fixing up old, damaged cars and is also very skilled at making furniture. Much of the furniture located amongst the ranch’s cabins was created by Bill. The way to Bill’s heart is definitely through his stomach; Bill absolutely loves pies. His favorite is rhubarb pie!
Beka studied Child and Family Development at the University of Georgia before meandering out west to the beautiful Colorado area. She is an avid traveler, having been to 17 different countries. She also just finished the “El Camino de Santiago” this past off season; this adventure entails 30 days of hiking across Spain. Beka loves avocados, as well as bonfires, summertime, running, yoga, fishing, horseback riding, and camping.
A Colorado native, Malori grew up playing in the Rocky Mountains. True to her home, she loves hiking and fly fishing in the mountains, a big cup of coffee, lots of sunshine, and bluegrass music.These days she is squeezing in as much travel as she can manage – 8 countries down and many more to go, the most recent being Thailand. This season she is taking over managing the front office, but has spent past seasons serving and helping out in the front office.
Patricia “Trish” Burger
Accounts Payable & Payroll Processing
Hometown: Steamboat Springs, CO
School: Mountain Heart School of BodyworkTrish is Vista Verde’s Licensed Massage Therapist. She provides tranquil relaxation and muscle recovery for each guest interested in massage therapy. Trish’s past experience includes many years in the restaurant industry where she honed her excellent guest service skills. She is thrilled to be a part of the Vista Verde team this summer!
This is Kerri’s fourth season at Vista Verde Ranch. After receiving a bachelor’s degree in Interior Design a couple years back, she realized the fast-paced life is not for her. She spends her time between breathing in the Rocky Mountain air at the ranch and working on her family’s grain farm back in Indiana. You can usually find her line dancing, traveling, reading, shooting, or looking for any live country music shows!
This is Erica’s third season managing the youth program at VVR. In her spare time, you can usually find her hiking with her dogs, practicing yoga beneath the aspens or enjoying some of her husband’s (Chef John) cooking. Erica has taught all over the world, including in Florida and Thailand. She loves living on the ranch where she can appreciate the beautiful nature that surrounds us, especially in the summer time.
Javin loves to spend his weekends hanging out with his wife, Johanna. They enjoy being outside, eating great food, watching movies and working on their property. Javin is skilled at welding, has a degree in diesel mechanics and can figure out how to fix anything you put in front of him. We are very lucky to have him back for the second time around here at Vista Verde.
Phil loves anything to do with sports; specifically, he loves to bass fish. During 2010, Phil lived in Sweden for four months, participating in a study abroad program through University of Wisconsin Stout. His favorite types of music are country and oldies. He also loves spending time as “Uncle Phil” to his niece and nephew, CeCe and Sam. Fun fact: Phil likes to think that he is fluent in two languages, English and “movie quotes.”
Neil has a degree in Mathematics and Economics from Indiana University. Some of his hobbies consist of running, reading, napping, beekeeping, and drinking coffee. Before landing at Vista Verde, he worked on a farm in Indiana and also at an IT company in downtown Chicago. Neil is very excited to switch lifestyles from hectic, city life to our rustic, rural community.
Matthew recently graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice, Law Enforcement & Psychology; in the near future, he plans to be a police officer. He knows how to work hard and that mentality gained him the nickname “Bulldog.” He’s a happy guy when he is outdoors and likes to be around dogs and horses. One of his favorite principles is “paying it forward.”
CPR, First Aid, AED
Hometown: San Marcos, TX
School: Texas State University–San Marcos
Ryan is the second oldest of ten children. He enjoys playing piano, guitar and singing. He is a thrill seeker and loves to do anything outdoor adventure related, i.e. hiking, biking, fishing, shooting sports, horses, motorcycles, etc. Ryan has a degree in Communications with a focus on Interpersonal Communication and a minor in Business. When he was a kid, Ryan dreamed of being a cowboy and is now living his dream at Vista Verde.