Spencer Brendel - President, Co-Founder and Sports Sales Manager
Spencer started PlayHard GiveBack with his dad, Jeff, in 2012. During his four-year stint at the University of St. Thomas—where he skated through four years of NCAA hockey and earned degrees in marketing and entrepreneurship—Spencer’s passion was ignited. Upon graduating, he anticipated melding his love of sports with a desire to make the world a better place. However, his interest to give back was sparked long before he laced up his skates at St. Thomas. When Spencer was young, he had the opportunity to travel to developing countries with his grandparents. Unbeknownst to him, these experiences inevitably shaped his desire to help those less fortunate than himself. In regards to athletics, Spencer has always gravitated towards team sports because of the camaraderie, collaboration, and community they evoke. When Spencer turned in his final marketing thesis—his PHGB business plan—his college professor handed him a $7,000 check, the catalyst Spencer needed to propel PHGB forward. Since then, Spencer has worked tirelessly to make his vision a reality. He is honored to lead a team dedicated to one unified mission: PlayHard and GiveBack.
Jeff Brendel - Co-Founder and Hospitality Sales Manager
As a lifelong entrepreneur, creativity and passion are at the forefront of Jeff’s work days. In his early 20s, he established his first business: a campus-based exercise and fitness program launched in conjunction with his exercise and physiology college classes. Following graduation, Jeff hit the ground running. He pioneered the development of a sports medicine facility in northern California, established (and expanded) Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory franchises in Park City, Utah, collaborated in real estate development in Idaho, and partnered in Internet program development in the Silicon Valley. Today, Jeff is a successful leader because of his learning experiences, acquired management skills, and the inevitable successes and failures that have shaped him as a business professional. Jeff is able to energetically guide a group of young, dynamic, and talented team members as they navigate the challenges of a snack food start-up. Jeff is passionate about growing a brand that stretches beyond snacks and athletes; he believes PHGB is a company that empowers, motivates, and mobilizes a corporate tribe around Playing Hard and Giving Back.
Candace ‘Candy’ Crew - Marketing Manager
At PlayHard GiveBack, Candy combines her forward-thinking marketing experience with her passion for small town business. From one mountain adventure to the next, Candy yearns for fresh air, sunshine, and a life filled with seasonal activities. In the summer and fall, she’s lacing up her tennis shoes for daily hikes and trail runs with her dog, Fritz. In the winter and spring, she’s clipping into her skies—attracted by cold, quiet mornings and white, powdery slopes. While she was born and raised in Boise, Idaho, she undeniably calls Sun Valley, Idaho home. From a young age, she’s had a passion for both playing hard and giving back. Candy started skiing and riding dirt bikes by the time she was five years old; from basketball shorts to soccer cleats, she played (just about) every sport. She’s proud of her hometown and her athletic abilities—she was a year-round athlete in high school and graduated from college as a four-year volleyball and track and field teammate. Whether it’s picking up a backcountry skier who's hitch-hiking, volunteering time to various organizations, or simply making friends at coffee shops, Candy is quick to pass on the feel good, do good vibes.
Mike Dommert - Business Manager
Despite his Austin, Texas roots, the Rocky Mountains are a place of solace and adventure for Mike. From the challenges they provide, to the fresh air and year-round activities, Mike has been a Colorado aficionado since his very first ski trip. After graduating from the University of Texas A&M, Mike worked in the finance sector at HomeAdvisor’s Denver office. Ironically, though, he spent every hard-earned vacation day outside of the state—in Idaho. As a previous whitewater guide on the Main Salmon, Mike made the ultimate decision to move to Ketchum full-time. While Mike has a passion for whitewater guiding, his experience working for a successful technology startup lead him to PlayHard GiveBack. He searched for a local startup where he could truly make a difference (and put his finance skills to the test), and PlayHard GiveBack fit the bill. The company’s motivation to make the world a better place—while fueling the sports Mike loves—made joining the team a perfect match.
Edie Horstman - Operations and Brand Communications Manager
Originally from the Bay Area, Edie resides in Denver, Colorado, a place she has grown to love over the last decade. A graduate from the University of Denver, Edie works in publishing and technology and has previously engaged in various entrepreneurship and start-up opportunities. Both a business-oriented and creative-thinking individual, Edie joins the PHGB team to meld her passion for holistic nutrition with her copywriting experience. When she's not working, you can find Edie on her yoga mat or in a cycling class, meal prepping for the week ahead, chipping away at her health coach certification, or enjoying the Rocky Mountains with her husband. A dedicated member of the PHGB team, she wears a few hats. She's either helping create (or edit) content, assisting Spencer and Max in their sales endeavors, or suggesting new, healthy PHGB snacks. All the while, she's keeping the PHGB team goal-oriented on the road to success.
Chase Nuttall - Graphic Design
Joining PlayHard GiveBack with over four years of freelance experience—and various entrepreneurial endeavors—Chase is an advocate for everything the PHGB brand has to offer. For Chase, it’s not just about the snacks (which are phenomenal); rather, the company is devoted to giving back and inspiring others to live an active, well rounded life. He believes PHGB’s small mountain town influence is another facet that distinguishes the company from its larger competitors. Bringing an Associate's degree in Graphic Design from San Diego City College, as well as a Bachelors of Science in Communication from ASU, Chase is able to put his skills to the test. Visually revealing the PlayHard GiveBack brand as it continues to grow, he is proud to be a member of the PHGB team. When Chase isn’t behind his computer, you can find him playing competitive beach volleyball, and ode to his college volleyball days.
Silvia Martinez - Production and Shipping
Silvia is one of the most beloved members of the PlayHard GiveBack team. She's a ray of sunshine during production days, and her seamless coordination makes shipping and fulfillment an organized, lighthearted affair. Although an immigrant to America, Silvia is proud of her Hispanic roots. During her teenage years, Silvia emigrated from Mexico to become a factory supervisor in the U.S. She eventually attended college and obtained her certification as a certified nurses assistant (CNA). Inevitably, she quickly found her passion for caring for the sick. In 1999, she became a U.S. citizen and raised two children on her own. She is now a grandmother, and everyone at PHGB appreciates her doting, nurturing instincts. If you were to ask her what her biggest challenge is, she'd tell you that it's running the PHGB herd while keeping Spencer and Jeff out of the kitchen.