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Find all the official photos, video clips, digital materials, and current information related to the Soldiers to Summits mission. Learn the climbers’ stories, meet expedition leaders, and receive Mt. Whitney expedition updates in one central hub.



  • Mountaineering's finest involved with the mission: Charley Mace, Jeff Evans and Erik Weihenmayer

  • Number of Climbers: 13, along with 2 Expedition Leaders, 3 Expedition Guides and a 2-man videography crew

  • The Mission: Mt. Whitney team is made up of veterans from 4 branches of the military

  • Training Dates: May 18-21 and August 1-6, 2014 in the Colorado Rockies

  • Mission Dates: Launch September 6, 2014. Summit: September 11, 2014

  • UPDATE: The entire team made it to the summit on 9.11.14 where they watched the sunrise at 14,505'


  • “With every step, I learn something new about me. I challenge myself to reach for the unattainable, so that I can pass on my experiences, hopes and dreams to others with disabilities.”

  • U.S. Army Veteran Tommy Carroll, Ecuador Expedition

  • "The climb doesn't build courage and confidence. It's already there. The climb is just a reminder.""These guys aim to achieve something quite remarkable, and in doing so will prove to everybody else that even though you've lost a leg or lost an arm, or whatever your illness may be, that you can achieve pretty much anything if you put your mind to it."

  • Prince Harry, South Pole Expedition

  • "At the base of the mountain, you think only of your limits. At the peak, you realize there are no limits."

  • Alicia Robison, Program Coordinator, Soldiers to Summits

  • "With the strength of our team and the fortitude that lies within each of us, we turned the obstacles and adversity in front of us into opportunities to excel. I firmly believe that every challenge placed before us has the potential for personal growth locked within it. Challenge Accepted!"

  • Aaron Hale, US Army EOF Technician Corp OIF & OEF

Press Releases

  • Soldiers to Summits Announces Mission: Mt. Whitney Gear Sponsors

    View PDF Document
  • Soldiers to Summits, Wells Fargo Announce Mission: Mt. Whitney Expedition Team of Wounded Veterans

    View PDF Document
  • Soldiers to Summits, Wells Fargo Announce Mt. Whitney Expedition for Wounded Veterans;
    Now Accepting Applications, Nominations

    View PDF Document


Charley Mace, Expedition Leader,<br>Mission: Mt. Whitney

Charley Mace

Expedition Leader,
Mission: Mt. Whitney

Charley Mace is a veteran mountaineer who’s climbed some of the most challenging peaks in the world. He has summited four 8000 meter peaks including 8611m K2, a more technically challenging and difficult climb than Mt. Everest. He has also successfully guided 8028m Gasherbrum II in the Karakorum range. Charley has eleven Himalayan expeditions to his credit and in 1998 he became the first American to climb 8163m Manaslu in western Nepal. Additionally, Charley has been on countless international expeditions and has guided on every continent.

 As one of the founders of Soldiers to Summits, Charley has been involved in many aspects of the organization since its inception, including leadership positions for most of our expeditions. He currently serves as Soldiers to Summits Senior Advisor.

 In addition to his experiential guiding experience, Charley combines his years of business knowledge and nonprofit management experience to help strengthen the S2S programming and proudly serve our country’s veterans.


Margaux Mange, Expedition Guide,<br>Mission: Mt. Whitney

Margaux Mange

Expedition Guide,
Mission: Mt. Whitney

During her second tour in Iraq, Margaux’s vehicle was hit by an IED while she was in the gunner’s position. Unaware of the severity of her concussion from the blast, Margaux remained in Iraq and continued her active duty until March, 2007 when she witnessed her best friend and two others die in another IED incident.

After those life changing events, Margaux developed Bell’s palsy, a disorder of the nerve that controls movement of the muscles in the face. She was sent back to Landstuhl and was discharged from the Army in 2008 after brain surgery and a number of treatments. Since has since participated in the Warrior Games, Ride to Recovery, and is a Alumni from the Cotopaxi Expedition and The SPAC Expedition.

Today, Margaux lives in Yuma AZ with her fiancée and her two dogs.


Jeff Evans, Expedition Leader,<br>Mission: Mt. Whitney

Jeff Evans

Expedition Leader,
Mission: Mt. Whitney

Raised in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, Jeff Evans has always followed the call of the excitement and wildness of outdoor adventure. This pursuit of passion led to the formation of MountainVision Incorporated and a career which includes guiding clients up mountain peaks across the globe, professional speaking and practicing as an emergency medicine Physician Assistant.

Jeff’s climbing-life began in the late 80s on the rock faces of Colorado and California. His passions grew bigger and bolder, and he found himself conquering challenging rock faces like Longs Peak, Petit Gripon, and El Capitan. Jeff’s resume also includes ascending iconic mountain peaks like Mt. Rainier, Mt. Kilimanjaro, Mt. McKinley and Mt. Whitney, this years summit and the tallest peak in the contiguous United States.

Jeff’s confidence and experience in the mountains led to his introduction in 1993 to blind climber, Erik Weihenmayer. Together, they have shatter people’s perceptions about the “handicaps” of the disabled by climbing McKinley, El Capitan, and Aconcagua; competing in adventure races; guiding other disabled individuals on peaks around the world; and successfully reaching the summit of Mt. Everest in 2001.

Jeff received his undergraduate degree in anthropology from the University of Colorado in Boulder, and his Masters as a Physician Assistant at Drexel University in Philadelphia. He currently resides in Boulder with his wife Merry Beth, son Jace, and dog Tucker. Jeff has appeared on ABC’s Expedition Impossible, is the published author of MountainVision: Lessons from the Summit, and has played a major role in the award- winning documentaries Farther Than the Eye Can See, Blindsight, and High Ground.

Nick Colgin, Expedition Guide,<br>Mission: Mt. Whitney

Nick Colgin

Expedition Guide,
Mission: Mt. Whitney

Nick Colgin, a native of Chesterfield, VA,  served on active duty as a combat medic in the 82D airborne. Over a 15 month deployment to Afghanistan from 2007-2008, he participated in over 700 combat patrols, earning an Army Achievement Medal and a Bronze Star.

Towards the end of Nick’s deployment, a rocket propelled grenade struck his humvee, and Nick suffered a traumatic brain injury. He returned home and experienced a number of issues during his recovery, including the inability to spell his own name, waking with a cane and barely being able to speak. He also required multiple surgeries on his face.

Despite his injuries, Nick never quit. While recovering, he attended the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and  fought tirelessly for his community of veterans with Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) in New York City. His efforts didn’t go unnoticed and resulted in President Barack Obama telling Nicks’ story in speeches across the nation.

Nick longed for a return to the outdoors and a simpler way of life he had experienced in the mountains of Afghanistan. In 2012, he applied to Soldiers to Summits and climbed Cotopaxi, the third highest active volcano in the world. Inspired by his experience with Soldiers to Summits, he went on to attend the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) for Outdoor Education. He has gone on to work and guide in the outdoors for individuals across the nation with a wide array of disabilities, particularly injured veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and blind individuals. As a result of his experience, Nick was  invited as a mentor on the 2013 Soldiers to Summits trip to Peru.

When Nick is not guiding for Soldiers to Summits, or climbing with nonprofits such as Paradox Sports and Veteran Expeditions, he is living in Western Massachusetts with his dog Dixie, running his own medical company. He never allowed his injuries or his obstacles to stop him.

Joshua Jespersen, Expedition Guide,<br>Mission: Mt. Whitney

Joshua Jespersen

Expedition Guide,
Mission: Mt. Whitney

In Josh’s eyes, there are two Americas. The first is Big America, where most of us reside, and what most of the world sees. Lesser known is Little America, the places that exist outside the city limits in the countryside and in the small towns.  This is where Josh was lucky enough to grow up, and learned the values of a simple life centered around family and happiness.

Early in his life, finding any and every way to enjoy the outdoors quickly became part of Josh’s lifestyle. Later, he followed in the footsteps of his adventurous grandfathers and uncles and joined the military. Josh spent six years in the Navy. He was based in Virginia Beach and deployed to Iraq in 2008 and Afghanistan in 2010 with SEAL Team IV.  Over both deployments, he participated in hundreds of missions with a myriad of different objectives. He was the lead climber for his platoon and worked his way up to a Special Operator 1st Class, ending his career in the Navy as a team leader.

In the military, Josh found what he believed to be the true embodiment of Little America. He appreciated the patriotism, sacrifice, and humility of American soldiers. Taking these traits to heart, Josh completed service time and continued his pursuit of adventure. He moved to Colorado to immerse himself in the mountains and to obtain a college degree.

Didrik Johnck, Adventure Videographer,<br>Mission: Mt. Whitney

Didrik Johnck

Adventure Videographer,
Mission: Mt. Whitney

As a pioneer in the world of online media, Didrik Johnck has created award winning content for almost two decades. He’s worn many hats from Director to Producer, Cinematographer to Photographer.

With a Geography degree and a passion for storytelling and photography, Didrik thought the best way to jumpstart his photojournalism career was to take nothing but a camera and a backpack and spend a year traversing the planet.

 Eventually, Dedrik rode the dot-com wave to San Francisco, where his career evolved into creating media driven, immersive, travel experiences and programming for online audiences. He’s a hands-on type covering over 100 productions with 400+ webisodes.  He’s strategized online content for some of the most well respected publishers in business.

 The subject matter of his interactive and original content work spans Himalayan climbing expeditions, adventure travel programming, music videos, live streaming concerts underground subcultures, automobile and political programs, PBS documentaries, the first online US presidential debate, and the 1st online only interview with a sitting US president.  His work has been awarded with Emmy’s for Cultural/Historical Documentary, Telly’s for Travel/Tourism Documentary and Cinematography, CINE Golden Eagle Award, and the prestigious Lowell Thomas Gold Award in Travel Broadcast Journalism as well as nominations for a Green Oscar by the Environmental Media Association and Cinematography from the Emmy’s.

Dave Shurna, Executive Director,<br>No Barriers USA

Dave Shurna

Executive Director,
No Barriers USA

After losing his hiking boots to a hungry hyena on the Nyika Plateau of northern Malawi, Dave and his friends spent a few intense months backpacking across Southern Africa while crafting their personal visions for changing the world. Years later, Dave would become the Executive Director of No Barriers USA, an organization dedicated to helping people unleash the potential of the human spirit. Through his leadership, Dave has grown Soldiers to Summits into an globally-respected program with a passionate following.

Dave has spent more than 10 years building strong nonprofit organizations. A passionate and seasoned educator, he has worked with such diverse organizations as the World Wildlife Fund, Duke University, Island Press, The Nature Conservancy, and the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens.

Dave earned a master’s degree from Duke University in Environmental Policy and Economics and a B.S. in Biology from Xavier University. He also holds a Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Duke. Prior to his work with No Barriers and Soldiers to Summits, Dave served as the Executive Director of The Catamount Institute and Global Explorers.

Alicia Robison, Program Coordinator,<br>Soldiers to Summits

Alicia Robison

Program Coordinator,
Soldiers to Summits

Alicia was born and raised in a small farming community in eastern Colorado; when she looked west, the mountains were just a small blip on the horizon. Alicia’s first international experience was at 17 when she went on a volunteer mission to the Darien Jungle of Panama with her group. This trip opened Alicia’s eyes to the colorful, diverse world that was waiting to be discovered. She went on to graduate with a BS of Science from the Warner College of Natural Resources at Colorado State University and has worked and lived in countless places around the world. Alicia first began leading youth multi-sport expeditions during her summer breaks in college and has led trips in Costa Rica, Panama, Oregon, Canada and Peru. She is fluent in Spanish, is an avid outdoorswoman and has worked the majority of her adult life in the mountains of Colorado. Alicia discovered rock climbing in college and has since climbed in iconic locations such as Yosemite in California, Paynes Ford in New Zealand, Squamish in Canada and most recently, the famous multi-pitch routes of El Potrero Chico in Nuevo Leon Mexico.

Throughout her travels and work experience, Alicia saw the profound way in which connecting with nature has the ability to transform lives. Immersing yourself in nature and facing the challenges it can present creates a space for personal growth and lessons that help form a person throughout their lives. Being in nature, climbing mountains and rock helps Alicia put life back into perspective and she feels that being humbled by nature helps us stay true to ourselves.

Rob Panos, Marketing and Outreach Coordinator

Rob Panos

Marketing and Outreach Coordinator

Rob is a Washington, DC native that traded in his tie for a Chaco tan and the mountain trail. Rob anticipated a career on Capitol Hill after graduation but headed west for a summer before diving in. This led him to Vista Verde Ranch in northwest Colorado, where the mountains took hold, as they often do. After three seasons as a ski and mountain bike guide, Rob was ready to leave VVR but not Colorado. He was drawn to Fort Collins by its urban opportunities amid a mountain lifestyle. From the moment Rob stumbled upon No Barriers he was hooked. It resonated with his soul and reignited his passions.

Rob first experienced the power of travel as a high school student in the Dominican Republic, where he would later return as an intern for the State Department. His cultural interests prompted him to pursue a degree in Anthropology and Spanish at the University of Virginia, followed by graduate work at UVa’s Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy. By the time Rob completed his Master of Public Policy he was on track for the DC office life but, fortunately enough, Colorado came calling.

Outside of work Rob likes to get outdoors and stay active. He enjoys mountain biking, skiing, and getting lost in a grove of Aspen trees. Rob is also active at Antioch Community Church in Fort Collins.

Sarah Wheatley, Intern,<br>Soldiers to Summits

Sarah Wheatley

Soldiers to Summits

Sarah has just recently moved to Fort Collins CO, fresh from the English Lake District. She is making the most of her new Colorado lifestyle by enjoying the outdoors with her husband and new puppy as much as possible.

Sarah studied Art and Design, but has working backgrounds in management, communications and childcare. Following graduation, Sarah decided to travel and volunteer around Europe. She became hooked on exploration and decided to use this passion to embark on a new career path working for a cause.

Her desire to travel and experience different cultures is never fulfilled, even after visiting many different countries and National Parks within the United States. Zion, the White Mountains and Yellowstone are just some of her favorite hiking, camping, and exploring destinations.

As an S2S intern, Sarah is dedicating a significant amount of personal time to volunteering. She has a strong desire to gain experience in the non-profit industry and loves working with people on a personal level to help to improve and enrich their lives, which stems from both personal and professional interests.

Sarah is an energetic, chatty, and committed individual who has seven plus years in the recreation and outdoor education industry. She still continues to live by her philosophy, believing that a positive mindset can motivate and excite people, while giving an innovative and creative approach to life.