Birger Torrissen (deceased)
Year Inducted: 1972
Born: 1901, Bardu, NOR
Died: February 28, 1991, Lakeville, CT
Birger Torrissen was a ski jumping and cross country competitor in Norway. He immigrated to the United States in 1929 and was named to the All-American cross country team in 1931. He competed for the United States Olympic Team in 1936.
Torrissen is recognized more importantly for his work in ski instruction. He instructed nordic skiing in Lake Placid influencing many famous skiers like Art Devlin, who is an Honored Member of the Hall of Fame. He also instructed the mountain troopers at Fort Lewis making many important contributions including simplifying the methods for teaching skiing to thousands of troopers who were required to develop these skills quickly. Four members of his armed forces skiers eventually were named to U. S. Olympic teams.
He made a contribution to the 1960 Squaw Valley Olympic Games as the person in charge of the ski jumping venues. In the 1960's he went to Salisbury, Connecticut and led junior and high school ski instruction programs there.