Liz Rocks Foundation Announces 2017 Leaders of Tomorrow Scholarship Recipient.

The Liz Rocks Foundation is thrilled to announce its first scholarship recipient! We had many inspiring applications and it was difficult to only pick one winner.  We hope to offer more scholarship opportunities as the Liz Rocks Foundation grows. 

About Maria:

Maria is a 16 year old student at Puget Sound High School. She first fell in love with the outdoors serving as a high school leader for 6th grade students at Waskowitz Outdoor School where she took them on long hikes. After having an opportunity to go on an overnight snowshoeing trip this winter she yearned to get back to the mountains and learn more. A proud Latina and dedicated scholar, she has shown tremendous potential, is outgoing, and exhibits endless stoke. She welcomes challenge and has already overcome many obstacles in life. Maria is the first to admit that she is obsessed with animals and hopes to see some out in the wild.

The Scholarship

Maria will be spending 9 days on Mount Baker with the American Alpine Institute (AAI).  AAI’s youth leadership program focuses on situational judgment and decision-making in a mountain setting while providing a base of general outdoor know-how and mountain sense. Participants learn rock-climbing skills, glacier travel techniques, crevasse rescue, navigation and other skills necessary for an attempt on 10,781-foot Mt. Baker as well as on other peaks.



Full Circle

The Liz Rocks Campaign has been so blessed with tremendous support from he outdoor community.  Many of our corporate donors had a close relationship with Liz.  At our first Auction event in 2015 the American Alpine Institute donated a few amazing courses for the cause.  We were stoked when our close friend Erin won the Ave 1 course.  We recently followed up with her about her experience!  

Her Story

So I did my Avalanche 1 with American Alpine Institute in Bellingham last February 2016. It was such a great experience! I got more into backcountry skiing and touring in 2011 but didn't know much about avalanche safety, snow science, or group decision making. I always relied on someone else more experienced to lead the way. Liz encouraged me that I should to do my Avy 1 and do it through AAI in Bellingham. A couple seasons went by and I never got around to it. After Liz passed away I, I thought "If I am going to be in the backcountry and taking these risks I definitely need some education.".

When I saw it was an item to bid on at The Liz Rocks Your Socks Off Action I knew there couldn't be a better time or reason to do it.

I did the course with my friend Brie and we had such a blast! The guide who taught the course, Tom Curtis turned out to be a friend of Liz's and had actually certified her as a guide. We shared some memories of her and it just seemed like the whole thing came full circle. I am so happy I did it!! 

- Erin

Erin also won a spot on the private Liz Rocks Baker Skills and Climb donated by AAI to summit Mt. Baker at this years 2016 Liz Rocks Your Socks Off event.  She will be joining two Liz Rocks Committee members along with two others who also won slots. All the slots were filled with first time climbers so this will be an incredible opportunity for them to get exposure to alpine basics.

 We can't thank the AAI enough for their continuous support of Liz Rocks and also for honoring Liz with their Guide Like Liz Scholarship ! They are now accepting applications for 2017.  

Laura Berridge on inpsiration and a love affair with climbing


I can never compare my friendship with Liz Daley in the way many of you can. I worked with Liz for about three years on and off. We spent most of our time working together giggling, speaking our version of Spanglish, and her telling me about her latest adventures. Liz was the type of person that sparkled, even if you just knew her for a brief period of time. When I got the news of her death on September 29, 2014, I remember feeling gutted. I had recently gone through a break-up, hated my job, and felt alone. It was only a few days prior that I was contemplating reaching out to her and finally taking her up on the offer to go rock climbing. I cannot change things, and never will be able to. I was so lost when Liz died. I hated myself, my life, and that I was a bystander in life.

The outpouring of love and admiration that Liz received even in death was mind blowing. It is amazing how much one person can change a community. Liz’s passing woke me up and made me face reality of my situation. She lived a million lifetimes in her short amount of years on Earth. Experiencing as much as life had to offer her, with her classic smile on her face and her positive attitude. I had been obsessed with mountaineering since I was 16, but my confidence never allowed me to really push myself to do it.

On January 1, 2015, enough was a enough. I started hiking as much as a possibly could, the beauty in the world around me saved me. I built my confidence, I saw the world, my community, and myself differently. About a year ago, I started rock climbing. It is my great love affair. I love everything about it, the places I climb, the amazing people from all different walks of life I meet, and the way it makes me feel. Most of all, I feel like myself. I love who I am, I feel empowered, and I see why Liz loved it so much. Although, I have a degree from the University of Washington, have lived the corporate life, and live just outside the city, I find inspiration from the life Liz Daley lead. I don’t need all of those things to make me happy. It is following my passion and being with my community that makes me complete.

When Liz died, I promised myself that I would “live like Liz,” and do my best to honor the memory of an amazing woman that I had the pleasure of knowing. Even in death, people can inspire us to be better. Liz, you have done this for me. Over the next year, I will be focusing on getting my Single Pitch Instructor for Rock Climbing, Wilderness First Responder, and work towards starting my own non-profit to help others to feel empowered with outdoor activities. Life is so unbelievably short, and I do not want anyone to ever spend a moment not living. Liz will forever hold a special place in all of our hearts. I chose to honor her by smiling and living my adventure.

-Laura Berridge

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