National Geographic Adventurer of the Year to speak at The Longevity Project event Wednesday

Explorer Mike Libecki climbs icebergs in Greenland in 2012.
Courtesy Mike Libecki

FRISCO — The Summit Daily News will present the second annual Longevity Project event Wednesday, Oct. 2. The event will feature National Geographic Adventurer of the Year Mike Libecki as well as a panel discussion on high elevation health featuring Dr. Marshall Denkinger from St. Anthony Summit Medical Center, Dr. Christine Ebert-Santos of the Ebert Family Clinic, Betsy Casey of Building Hope and Sheriff Jaime FitzSimons.

Libecki, a world-renowned mountaineer, was featured as NatGeo’s Adventurer of the Year in 2013. He has been on 87 expeditions in more than 100 countries, taking him to some of the most remote and dangerous corners of the planet to feed his climbing addiction. He specializes in technical climbing and prefers to go where others have not. He’s done 220 first ascents, climbing sheer walls that nobody has ever dreamed of scaling. 

But aside from his physical accomplishments, Libecki is a advocate for pursuing better mental health. He believes human emotion to be the most powerful force on the planet and that inner peace is as important as physical preparation for his perilous adventures. 

Libecki will be speaking about mental health, his adventures and other aspects of adventurer life as The Longevity Project’s featured speaker.

This year’s panel discussion will focus on the physical and mental health aspects of living in a high elevation community. 

Denkinger, chief informatics officer for Centura Health and former chief medical officer at St. Anthony’s, will bring his wealth of experience in hospital medicine and talk about the High Altitude Research Center, which will conduct the first longitudinal population study of its kind for a high elevation community like Summit County.

Ebert-Santos has been practicing pediatric and family medicine in Summit County for 20 years. During that time, she has made groundbreaking discoveries about health conditions at high election, including the diagnosis of high altitude residential pulmonary edema, which affects residents regardless of elevation change.

Casey is program manager for Building Hope, a Summit County-based nonprofit dedicated to suicide prevention advocacy as well as helping people navigate the mental health system. Building Hope provides resources, activities and community events to bring people together and encouraging a community dialogue on mental health. 

If you go

What: The Longevity Project
When: 6 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 2
Where: Riverwalk Center, 150 W Adams Ave. in Breckenridge
Cost: $25

FitzSimons has been Summit County’s sheriff since 2016, during which time he’s prioritized an appropriate law enforcement response to mental health and substance use calls. FitzSimons will be overseeing the launch of a new Systemwide Mental Assessment Response Team that will send a mental health clinician along with law enforcement officers when responding to calls involving a mental health crisis or disturbance.

Those who would like to learn more about living and thriving in the mountains should attend the event, which also will take a look at how the Summit County community is working to find solutions to some of the High Country’s most pressing health and social concerns.

The event will take place at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 2, at the Riverwalk Center, 150 W Adams Ave. in Breckenridge. 

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

As a Summit Daily News reader, you make our work possible.

Summit Daily is embarking on a multiyear project to digitize its archives going back to 1989 and make them available to the public in partnership with the Colorado Historic Newspapers Collection. The full project is expected to cost about $165,000. All donations made in 2023 will go directly toward this project.

Every contribution, no matter the size, will make a difference.