J. N. Cooke
Hall of Fame Class of 1978
Information submitted in a nomination letter to the U.S. National Ski Hall and Fame by Hans Kraus, M.D., P.C.
Cooke had a love of mankind. He liked people – he liked to help people – and they responded. He never put off until tomorrow – he got the job done with enthusiasm, thoroughness and hard work. He was proud of the U.S.A. and wanted to help our U.S. skiers truly represent our country and do the best they could – without any government subsidy.
J. N. Cooke, with his friend Roland Palmedo, developed two major ski areas in Vermont (Stowe and Mad River) thereby making it possible to introduce thousands of people to this wonderful sport.
In 1967, realizing the need for money to fund the U.S. ski teams, Cooke formed the New York Committee for the U.S. Ski Team fund. This committee has consistently raised more money for our U.S. ski teams than any other group in the country. In 1968, Cooke launched the first New York Ski Ball. He also gave willingly of his time to help other cities develop their own fundraising projects.
In 1938, Cooke and Roland Palmedo formed the Mount Mansfield Co. in Stowe, Vermont and built the first aerial chairlift in the Eastern U.S.A. (Sun Valley, in 1937 was the first). Cookie concentrated on the problems involved with the Vermont government (i.e., Mount Mansfield State Forest) as well as the necessary Vermont fundraising. Cookie was vice-president and a director of The Mount Mansfield Co. from 1938 to 1974 when he voluntarily resigned because of a possible conflict of interest.
Cooke was a former Director of the United States Eastern Amateur Ski Association and was one of their delegates to many USSA Annual Meetings.
In 1946, again with Roland Palmedo, formed the Mad River Corporation, building the first aerial chairlift there, developing the ski area and helping in the building of lodges. Cooke was the vice-president and a director of the Mad River Corporation for many years.
In 1967, he formed the New York Committee for the United States Ski Team Fund and was its chairman. Cooke also pioneered the development of similar committees in Boston, Philadelphia and Rochester, New York.
He was the honorary vice-chairman of the Board of Trustees of the U.S. Ski Education Foundation, Park City, Utah. Formerly, he was on the staff of Chet Huntley’s Big Sky Mountain Resort in the area of sales. He then became the director of Topnotch at Stowe, Vermont, confining his efforts to the corporate area.
Cooke married the former Nancy Reynolds of Montclair, New Jersey. She was the Women’s U.S.A. Champion in slalom in 1940, member of the U.S. Ski Team and chosen for the Olympic team in 1940, amateur downhill and combined champion in 1941 and elected to the U.S. National Ski Hall of Fame in the athlete category in 1972.
J. N. Cooke was elected to the U.S. National Ski Hall of Fame in 1978.
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