Year Inducted: 1998
Born: February 18, 1915 ID
John Woodward's participation in skiing has been as a ski racer, both in his youth and as an elder stateman on the slopes and in retailing. He also was at the center of action in training the famous ski troopers of the 10th Mountain Division.
He had been the Pacific Northwest Intercollegiate Champion in 1936 and prior to the outbreak of war managed a ski shop for Bon Marche in Seattle. He joined the military and led the first ski patrol of the 15th Infantry presaging the establishment of the 10th Mountain Division. He was a leader and with John Jay, Walter Prager and Freidl Pfeiffer under his command he was in charge of the detachment that made the army's first ski training film.
He was ordered to direct all the ski instructors at Camp Hale and as a result thousands of men became competent skiers under his command. He had to set standards for training hundreds of instructors which exceeded the available supply of experienced instructors available in the United States at that time. He also saw action as a Major in the 1st Battalion of the 87th Mountain Infantry in Italy.
Post wartime he had a thirty year career in the ski industry starting out running ski schools and managing the ski shop of the University of Washington. He became a partner in the Anderson and Thompson Ski Company in Seattle. He edited and published Ski World Magazine.
Following retirement in 1975 he returned to racing in Masters and then NASTAR. In 1997, at the age of 82 he was the Masters Class 12 champion in slalom, giant slalom, Super G and combined. In 2001, he won gold medals in the Super G, giant slalom and combined at the World Masters Championships. Victories continued in the years that followed and he raced past his ninetieth birthday.