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Local Voices, Local Choices

Ogden-area locals making a difference.

R. Brandon Long

Founder of The Banyan Collective and host of the Ogden Outdoor Adventure Show. The Banyan Collective produces several locally themed podcasts focused on local arts, literature, and outdoor recreation. Brandon is also a member of the Ogden City Arts Advisory Committee and has served as its chairman. You can catch him emceeing several prominent events around town and at Gear 30, a local outdoor gear shop. Keep up with Brandon and all of the latest Banyan Collective podcasts here.


Cam McLeod

Preeminent outdoor photographer whose work is consistently featured in prominent ski and outdoor magazines as well as outdoor recreation company marketing. If you’ve picked up a ski magazine in the last decade, you’ve seen Cam’s work. He also serves on the Ogden City Arts Advisory Committee and chronicles the arts, culture and adventure scenes around Ogden. Learn a bit more about Cam and check out his work here. 


Jacquie King Wright

Jacquie’s two primary passions are rivers and brewing beer for Roosters, where she became the first female commercial brewer in the state. Since then, she has seen many more women enter the field and works with them every year to create new seasonal brews, including an annual Pink Boots collaboration beer. When she’s not mucking out brew kettles or scrubbing down fermenters, you can find her at the oars on rivers throughout the western United States. Get to know Jacquie a bit better here.


Daniel Turner

As the Associate Director of Campus Recreation at Weber State University, Daniel has been instrumental in bringing thousands of people into the world of outdoor recreation. Working in the Outdoor Adventure & Welcome Center, his reach goes well beyond the student body of WSU. The facility is heavily utilized for equipment rental by the entire Ogden community and is even used to train search and rescue personnel and proper safety rigging for construction workers. Learn a bit more about it all here

Steve Ballard

Pandemic-related supply chain issues and an eye focused on sustainability led local restaurateur, Steve Ballard, to some pretty forward-thinking solutions. The owner/operator of local restaurants, Sonora Grill and Thai Curry Kitchen, invested in highly efficient hydroponic grow operations for sizable chunks of the produce his operations required. If you dine at either of his restaurants, many of the greens you’re consuming have traveled literally less than a few blocks, making their carbon footprint virtually non-existent and the freshest you’ll find anywhere. Perhaps more importantly, they haven’t been exposed to pesticides or pollutants in any way. Steve’s passion for the local community also let him to start Ogden’s Food Truck Rally before the pandemic hit. Learn a bit more about Steve here.


Jeff & Beth Furton

If you spend more than a day or two around Ogden, you’re probably going to enjoy a bit of Daily Rise coffee. It might be at one of their local locations, or possibly at Farmers Market Ogden, Snowbasin Resort or Weber State University. Local roasters, Jeff and Beth Furton, have been operating under the slogan “Caffeinate & Recreate” for a while now, and they live up to the mantra. Their energy, positivity, and friendly vibe has fully enveloped their entire staff, and you won’t find a more enthusiastic crew anywhere. Jeff has also been an integral part of the GOAL Foundation (our local volunteer and event production organization), and more or less leads the organizations youth efforts, particularly the Young Runner’s program. Learn a bit more about Jeff, Beth and Daily Rise here


Tony Chen

Tony and his wife, Tina, are the founders of Ogden’s premier sushi restaurant, Tona. The restaurant is consistently recognized as the Best Sushi Restaurant in the State of Utah. Tony cultivates many of his herbs and greens right in the basement of Tona. When he’s not at the restaurant, you’ll find Chef Tony riding his mountain bike on our local trail system, or snowboarding at one of our resorts. His unique approach to his culinary craft has been highlighted in multiple places. For example…


Mayor Mike Caldwell

Upon election for his first term, Mayor Caldwell committed to commute by bicycle for his entire first term. It must have had some sort of impact beyond his own personal fitness and positive effect on the environment, because over the subsequent years, more designated bike paths have popped up and Ogden’s Green Bike program is currently only waiting on supply chain issues to sort themselves out before launching. Get to know Mayor Caldwell a bit more here…