World-renowned Mountaineer and
Executive Leadership Development Expert
Vision. Perseverance. Fortitude. Innovation. Curiosity. Adaptability. Unwavering belief in self and team. Determination to make the impossible possible. Ethics. Resilience. All characteristics central to success in entrepreneurship…and high altitude mountaineering at the top of the world’s highest peaks in the harshest conditions imaginable.
Over the last decade, as the ranks of high altitude mountaineering fill with capable amateur climbers pursuing their personal adventure dreams, Benitez has quietly emerged as one of the most experienced, respected and busiest professional guides and Leadership Development consultants in the world, managing expeditions to the tallest, most remote peaks on the planet as well as speaking/consulting with a deep and varied group of clientele.
Throughout his career, as a professional mountaineering guide, Luis has summited the top of the famed “Seven Summits” a cumulative 32 times, including being a six-time summiteer of Mt. Everest.
Because of this, between managing expeditions on some of the most remote peaks in the world, while consulting with a deep and varied group of clientele, Benitez works to tie the lessons available from the outdoors and carry them back to the everyday challenges of life and business while always holding a keen focus on the global development and advancement of the outdoor industry.
At the start of his career, Benitez spent a decade managing the well-established leadership development school, Outward Bound Professional in Colorado.
Luis has also served as the COO and Director of Operations for Adventure Consultants (AC), a highly respected New Zealand-based global expedition firm with a long and storied history of leading trips on Mt. Everest that was featured both in the book Into Thin Air and in the movie Everest.
Benitez has reported from Mt. Everest for ABC-TV News, and has filmed segments for National Geographic on Mt. Everest.
At the heart of his career, Luis has always focused on teaching as well as serving. Some of his most rewarding work has been to help create the internal university for Vail Resorts, focusing on leadership development for every level of employee. Benitez also helped create the nonprofit Trekking For Kids, which focuses on service based expeditions allowing participants to climb and trek while teaching them about local issues like housing and healthcare for disadvantaged youth around the world. Benitez was also a founding partner for Warriors to Summits, a nonprofit focusing on serving returning Veterans by connecting them with the outdoors.
Throughout all of this, Benitez has served as an adjunct professor in Ecuador and Chile for the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.
In the last 10 years, Benitez has grown to have a deeper investment in public service 1st by serving as a Town Councilman in Eagle, Colorado and for the last four years, served as the 1st State Director for the Outdoor Recreation Industry office for the State of Colorado. He has recently been appointed the Vice President of Government Affairs and Global Impact for VF Corporation.
Benitez holds a professional guide accreditation from ASEGUIM in Ecuador and an Executive MBA from the University of Denver (DU) with an emphasis certification on behavioral sciences and public policy from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.
Benitez weaves the life lessons available in the mountains through to success in entrepreneurship and overcoming the challenges of building ethical, sustainable businesses, as he has done as a highly sought after speaker and leadership development expert. He has pioneered experiential leadership development programs at global companies such as Vail Resorts, at world-leading universities like The Wharton School, and many others.