9/23/11 – Five Ten, a leader in innovative, premium, high-friction outdoor footwear and technical apparel, has appointed Wally Barker as Chief Financial Officer. As CFO, Mr. Barker will be responsible for the overall financial strategy and direction of Five Ten. In addition to climbing, his career spans a wide range of academic and business successes. Mr. Barker’s formal education includes an MBA from University of California, an MS in Engineering from University of Alaska, and a BS in Mechanical Engineering from University of Washington. His professional background included serving as President and CFO of Quiksilver, Japan; Manager of Mergers and Acquisitions for Ernst and Young; Audit Manager for Deloitte Touche; as well as an early career working for the investment banks Merrill Lynch and Shearson Lehman.“Wally is a fantastic addition to our team,” notes Charles Cole, founder and president of Five Ten. “There are few people in the world who combine such passion for adventure and business. It is rare to find a person with such strong pedigrees in both climbing and business. We are proud and lucky to have him on board.” Dean Potter, Five Ten athlete and National Geographic 2011 Athlete of the Year, said, “Wally and I lived in the dirt together during my formative years. We rigged and tested early highlines. Barker opened my eyes to what's possible on the walls with his tenacious style. I can’t think of a better fit for Five Ten.” When noted climber and Five Ten athlete Cedar Wright heard that Barker was joining the Five Ten team, he said, “Five Ten has executed a slam dunk by hiring Wally. In Yosemite, we nicknamed him Big Wall Wally, as he is one of the all-time great big wall climbers. Plus, he’s a business ninja who excelled at his career and still pushed the limits of the sport.” While Mr. Barker is more interested in what he will do in the future, there is no escaping the past. His climbing career spans 30-plus years; remote big wall first ascents in Pakistan and Baffin Island, solo ascents of most of all of El Capitan’s hard aid climbing test pieces [Yosemite, CA] and ground-breaking speed climbing link-ups of walls, such as Astroman, The Rostrum and The West Face of El Cap in a single day, as well as a host of other accomplishments on rock and on ice. Mr. Barker says “After living nine years overseas, it’s great to be back in the States and to be among the brotherhood of climbers and adventurers. I’m looking forward to raising my young family in Redlands and seeing my children grow up around similarly minded people.” He adds, “It is a privilege to join such an authentic brand and have a role where I can make a major impact.” Mr. Barker is very proud of what the company has accomplished to date. “While many people think of Five Ten as a rock climbing shoe company, sales in mountain biking and other action outdoor sports footwear are exploding – overall company sales are up 50 percent overall.” He notes, “Good things are happening with Five Ten, and I am positive I can help lead the company’s transition into being truly integrated global company.”ABOUT FIVE TEN: Five Ten, and its proprietary Stealth rubber, are at the forefront of the adventure footwear category, with Brand of the Brave™ athletes and footwear showcased in international competitions, blockbuster movies, and hundreds of magazines and television productions around the globe.
Five Ten is a privately owned manufacturer of equipment for biking, rock climbing, water sports, trail running, and any activity where high-friction footwear is a necessity. For more than 25 years as the Brand of the Brave™, Five Ten has made cutting footwear used by athletes in the World's Most Exciting Sports™. With the help of top national and international athletes and guides, combined with a world-class rubber-testing and R&D facility, Five Ten provides footwear to top international athletes including JT Holmes, Dean Potter, Sonnie Trotter, Greg Minnaar, Danny MacAskill and Nico Favresse. Check out the 2011 movie blockbusters-- Mission Impossible 4: Ghost Protocol; Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon; and Twilight; Breaking Dawn for shots of Five Ten in some of Hollywood’s most exciting stunts.