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Design and photos by Chris Wiley

RuNT Austin: Build Brands. Give Back.

Written By Molly Hitchings | Feb 23, 2018

The second RuNT event in Austin has come and gone, and was a huge success. The theme of the night was “Build Brands. Give Back”. With presentations from Haley Robison, CEO of Kammok, Laura Nettleton, Director of Development of Explore Austin, and Adam Saraceno, CMO of Peak Design, it was inspirational to learn about these unique companies and how they are impacting the communities around them.

With beer from Hops & Grain, pizza from Via 313, and High Brew coffee, the sold out event filled Kammok HQ to the brim.

Haley kicked off the evening with a challenging PechaKucha presentation. This PK style is 20 pictures, each one displayed for 20 seconds. It was her first time doing a presentation like this, and she knocked it out of the park. Haley said, “you can’t grow as a person if you don’t push yourself outside your comfort zone,” and we could not agree more. We learned about how Kammok got its start on KickStarter, and how it’s developed into one of the most innovative outdoor brands today. Their Thylacine sleeping bag was recently named Outside Magazine’s ‘gear of the year’ award in 2017; pretty rad for a company of less than ten. Kammok is a 1% For The Planet company, has given 100% of proceeds to disaster relief multiple times, and also partners with Explore Austin, a local nonprofit.

Laura from Explore Austin opened our eyes to the amazing organization and what they accomplish. Their mission at Explore Austin is to change the lives of underserved youth through leadership, mentoring, and adventure. Laura taught us that the average child spends a total of seven minutes outdoors, per day, something Explore Austin is striving to change.

Explore Austin has plenty of ways for you to get involved, as well. There are sub-mentor opportunities available, or you can apply to be in the program as a mentor for the 3-6 year commitment.

Adam from Peak Design wrapped up the evening with a humorous presentation along with a drinking game we called “Wink and Drink” whenever he needed a slide changed. Peak is another beautiful, innovative company that got its start on KickStarter, and is also a 1% For The Planet company. Peak creates products that keep your gear organized, protected, and accessible, so you are free to adventure, commute, and create. They pride themselves in creating true utility through elegant, thoughtful design.

It was an awesome night filled with laughter, great speakers, and amazing insight into three companies that not only benefit the creative and outdoor communities, but also give back to the communities that helped build them.

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