Gus Kenworthy was born and raised in the quintessential ski town Telluride, Colorado. Born into a family of avid skiers, saying that Gus started skiing at an early age is an understatement — his parents got him out on the hill shortly after he was walking — and he’s never looked back. Currently, Gus is one of the most decorated free skiers in the world.
As a member of the inaugural U.S. Olympic slope style team during the 2014 Winter Olympics, Gus made his country and sport proud by crushing the Russian slopestyle course and taking home the silver medal. With two of his fellow U.S. Ski Team members, Gus took to the podium for one of only three U.S. podium sweeps in Winter Olympic Games history.
In addition to his amazing career, Gus is known by many for something else that he accomplished while in Sochi, Russia, in 2014. He made headlines by saving a family of stray dogs (a mom and four pups) that he met on the streets of the Olympic town. Although it took longer than he thought, Gus finally got the family back to the U.S. and in the process he raised awareness for the cause of homeless pets both internationally and at home.
Working with the International Humane Society, Gus used social media and the press to bring awareness to the plight of the hundreds of Sochi strays. Gaining a silver medal and several new furry family members was great, but Gus says that, "I think that's the best part for me [is that people tell me] that they've either donated to the Humane Society, or they went and adopted a dog here or whatever, so that's awesome to see. I think that we're really just kind of hoping to bring awareness to the plight of the dogs in Russia and hopefully set up some shelters and stuff there so that in future World Cups and different events, there will be a better system in place so that this doesn't happen again, so that if someone does want to take a dog back, they can take a dog back and it's not going to be a horrible process."
The Humane Society of Utah (HSU) is the largest and most effective animal shelter in the state of Utah, saving the lives of more pets than any other. The HSU, founded in 1960, has always fostered an atmosphere of love and respect for animals in Utah.
Our many programs that benefit not only Utah’s animals, but Utahns as well, include: low-cost spay/neuter and vaccination services to the community; transfer and rescue of at-risk pets from other shelters around the state; receiving of owner-surrendered pets that can no longer be a part of their family; shelter and adoption of homeless pets into new loving homes; education of school-aged children and teens across the Wasatch Front about the humane treatment of animals and the homeless pet population; cruelty investigations of animal abuse and neglect around the state; and the promotion of legislation and ordinances that will enhance Utah’s standing in the country.