Katherine Donnelly | 08.22.2018

As part of Outdoor Project's Women In the Wild series this summer, I have had the honor of working with outdoor women from all over the industry to dig a bit deeper into who they are, how they got to where they are now, how they approach the outdoors, and more. These women are all rad in their own right, regardless of where they come from, what they look like, or how "badass" they might be. Whether they're mothers, daughters, sisters, professional athletes, beginners, weekend warriors, "instafamous," or anywhere in-between, their unique stories, journeys, opinions, and perspectives are incredibly valuable and insightful as Outdoor Project - and the industry as a whole - progresses and evolves to become more inclusive to every type of outdoors person. 

Through in-depth and often thought-provoking interviews, I hope to highlight these women's stories, their work, their adventures, and so much more with an eye toward giving them their well-deserved share of the spotlight while inspiring and empowering even more women to get outside!

In this feature we talk to Georgina Miranda.

I have had the distinct honor of getting to know Georgina over the past few years, and if there's one thing you should know about this Woman In The Wild, it's that she is an absolute force to be reckoned with when she puts her mind to something. Her drive, passion, and enthusiasm is inspiring in itself and emanates from every action and decision she makes. She has already been a catalyst for good across the outdoor and entrepreneurial worlds, and I am 100% confident that there is much more to come from this spectacular human. Get the full scoop below.

Photo by Kristina Frost.

OP: Give us the skinny on who Georgina Miranda is.

Georgina Miranda: I am the founder and CEO of She Ventures and creator of Move 30 Collective. I am an entrepreneur, adventurer, activist, speaker, consultant, writer, and someone generally curious to explore and experience as much of the world as possible. I have and live by my three truths, and most of my work revolves around these:

  • Women were the largest untapped resource in the world
  • Violence against women needs to be something that is no longer acceptable
  • Adventure changes lives

I’m inspired to do work that wakes people up, especially women. To show people that we are all powerful beyond measure, and that this power can be used to do good in the world. To show the beauty of life and to trigger in other people what is beautiful inside of them, because we all have this inside of us.

I am a 100% latina born in L.A. and probably your least likely adventurer. It’s captured my heart and way of life. I redefine adventure for myself constantly and carve my own path. I don’t fit in any one box- thank goodness for that!

I think I’m on the greatest adventure of all right now, the one of going deep inside myself.

OP: When did you first know that you were going to spend your life in the outdoors?

Georgina Miranda: I can’t say I spend “my life outdoors.” I definitely try to spend as much time outside as possible. I run a business that has taken a lot of years of hard work, and so most days are in front of a computer or on the road.

Adventure did capture my heart in my mid-twenties in the middle of working full time and going to grad school full time at night and commuting in hellacious L.A. traffic. I knew there had to be more to living. I took an indoor rock climbing class out of curiosity, and for once my mind and spirit felt free and like a kid again. That led to me starting to walk 20 to 30 minutes a day in hopes of one day being able to run a mile, which led to longer hikes, which lead to an interest in mountaineering and activism, which led to me launching a project to complete the Explorer Grand Slam to raise awareness around gender-based violence by climbing the highest peak on each continent and skiing the last degree of the North Pole and South Pole. I have three expeditions remaining, and when I started in 2008, I did not know how to climb or ski. Let’s just say I’m hooked now. It’s changed my life.

OP: What does it mean to you to be a woman in the outdoor industry?

Georgina Miranda: It’s a gift to try to share the gift of adventure with others. I know the wonderful positive effects the outdoors and adventure has had in my life, and I hope to sprinkle that to others. When I started out in the industry and was trying to create a movement to raise the visibility of women in this space and as leaders in 2014, many looked at me like a crazy lady and like “who are you to do this?” I’ve followed my heart and tried to live true to my mission. It’s not been an easy road, but I still think it is worth it.

It’s wonderful to see how the conversation has shifted and to be a leader in this space now. There is a lot of opportunity to encourage more women of every type to join in this lifestyle and enjoy the wonderful benefits in can bring to their lives. There is no one-size fits all to adventure, it’s for each person to define, that’s the beauty of it.

OP: What has the outdoors done for you, and how do you pay it back?

Georgina Miranda: Adventure changed my life in every sense. It also opened the doors to a world I only read about in magazines. To have reached the highest point on Earth is still a “pinch me moment”....me, the girl that couldn’t run a mile, that never adventured growing up, that is not a sponsored athlete, that grew up with a lot of financial struggle, really? Hiking and mountains in general were my gateway to adventure living. Now I also ski, dive, bike, and travel as much as I can to see new parts of the world. I have jumped out of planes and off of bridges, run a few marathons and lots of half marathons, and I know there are many more adventures to be had in my lifetime.

As far as paying that back, I try to do so in my work with She Ventures by creating a company that celebrates and ignites adventure as a way of life for women around the world via our event series, platform, and now coaching and consulting programs. We also use our events to actively fundraise for nonprofits working to make the lives of women and our planet better.

I serve on the board of Big City Mountaineers, whose mission is to get more under-served youth outdoors.

OP: Conservation and protection of our public lands are central themes in today’s outdoor recreation narrative. As someone who spends a significant amount of time outdoors and on public lands, what role do you think small business owners - and outdoor enthusiasts, in general - should play in this evolving conversation and landscape?

Georgina Miranda: We all have a responsibility for ourselves and future generations. If we want to keep enjoying this amazing lifestyle, we need to protect the places we recreate. We all share that responsibility, small business owners, big companies, and people who recreate. It also goes a step further beyond just public lands and the general health and well being of our planet. We all need to show it love to ensure it’s health for us and future generations.

OP: Who has inspired you along the way?

Georgina Miranda: My key sources of inspiration have been:

  • Eve Ensler, founder of VDAY and author of the Vagina Monologues and generally one of the most amazing women you will ever meet. She is a force for women in the world.
  • International Medical Corps and the staff I have had the privilege of getting to know the past decade.
  • Richard Branson, the entrepreneur of all entrepreneurs merging business and impact. Life goal to work with him in some capacity one day.
  • Ed Viesturs; His books and life made me think, "Georgina, you can be a mountaineer too!" It’s also how I first learned about Big City Mountaineers, and I am now a board member. He is the only American to have climbed all 14 of the world's eight-thousander mountain peaks and the fifth person to do so without using supplemental oxygen. He started off in veterinary school and has an unlikely path, which I love.

OP: What does adventure mean to you?

Georgina Miranda: Adventure is a way you live, not just something you do. My relationship with the word has evolved over the past decade.

I wrote this recently: Sometimes adventure means leaving the past behind, breaking old patterns and thoughts, trusting that life is working for you, setting an intention for a beautiful new beginning, and simply following your heart. It's not always on top of a massive mountain or shredding down some perfect pow.

Life's greatest adventures can happen in your own journey of self discovery if you are willing to take leaps and jump into the unknown for the sake of the journey....for the sake of the adventure...for the sake of going to places you had not been to before. Every day can be an adventure if you want it to be.

Love the journey. Dive into adventure.

OP: What does the term "badass" mean to you?

Georgina Miranda: A person that carves their own path courageously despite any odds passed down or presented along the way. They follow their own course with solid good intention in their heart.

OP: We are seeing a shift in what the term woman or female might bring to mind (LGBTQ), both in the outdoor community and throughout the world. What does being a woman mean to you? Femininity?

Georgina Miranda: Femininity, like adventure, is something for each person to define. I cannot define what it means to be feminine for another woman, regardless of her sexual orientation.

I am a girly girl at heart but a badass on the mountain and on my endurance adventures, and many times feel like I connect with my full/true essence on the mountain while also losing a bit of my femininity at the same time- if that makes sense.

Lately, I have been writing about staying connected to my divine feminine energy. This is something that both men and women have actually, as we can also have divine masculine energy as women. I know I like how I work, love, and live when I am more connected to my divine feminine energy, and so that’s been my focus lately.

Being a woman means: you are amazing, a goddess, and you can do anything you heart desires.

OP: What mantra or set of words do you live by?

Georgina Miranda: I came up with this in 2007 and live to it everyday: The extraordinary is always possible, never limit yourself or life’s potential.

OP: In a perfect world, what does the outdoors (the people, the places, the community as a whole, etc.) look like to you? And what can outdoor brands and media companies, such as Outdoor Project, do better to help get us there?

Georgina Miranda: In perfect world the outdoors and nature is a place everyone can enjoy in their own way. It does not look a specific way, it’s not our job to prescribe that. This space remains, fun, life-changing, and we all keep our hearts invested in making sure our planet and places at risk are protected. It’s all of our responsibility.

I think all companies can keep extending an invitation to everyone to come enjoy this way of life, meet people where they are, don’t be prescriptive, keep it fun, and keep it real. Also, be mindful of how we can all do a better job of being good stewards in our world. No one person has all the answers.

OP: What is one thing that you never leave home without?

Georgina Miranda: My phone.

OP: Let’s talk gear - what are your thoughts on women-specific gear? Love it, hate it? Are there any companies out there doing it right? And how so? When does it matter to you most to have gear specific to women versus unisex products?

Georgina Miranda: This would be an essay response as it was one of my biggest frustrations as a mountaineer and still is. There is a lot of opportunity to make more relevant gear for women.

OP: What is the greatest piece of advice or direction that you’ve ever received and what’s the story behind it?

Georgina Miranda: “Change your eyes. See the world with your heart." Annick Pachamama, November 2017. I was on a personal healing journey in Southeast Asia, and this was said to me during a Mayan calendar reading. The world is a better place when you live from your heart and see the world that way.

OP: If you could give one piece of advice to yourself when you were just starting out with She Ventures, what would it be?

Georgina Miranda: Let go. There is a grasping as humans to make things be a certain way. Business are meant to be of service, and how you serve best can change over the course of the journey in building a company. So, know your “why,” and be open to changing and adjusting your “how.”

OP: In a world seemingly run by online personas, how do you approach social media, and how does it play into your lifestyle - both work and play?

Georgina Miranda: I try to keep it real. That does not get me the most followers, but I'd rather be real than have hundreds of thousands of people following me because that is how the world wants to see me. I honestly have struggled to be more vulnerable in my personal Instagram account, but now in combination with my blog and writing, it feels right. There are so many aspects to my life, it’s not all mountain tops.

As far as the business goes, at She Ventures we are about real women, real stories, pretty simple. We want to let all women know that adventure living and living well is for everyone.

OP: What’s next for you in the coming months and years?

Georgina Miranda: I have a new home base in Amsterdam and split my time between here and the U.S. I look forward to living out my dream of living abroad and exploring a new continent and more parts of the world. I am also pretty deep in a journey of self discovery and loving it.

I aim to complete the Explorer Grand Slam by April 2019, but that is all dependent on me getting sponsors for my last three expeditions.

Grow She Ventures into everything it can be to serve more women around the world.

OP: The title of your autobiography would be...

Georgina Miranda: "Bold by Nature," and I have a proposal out for it.

OP: In your next life, you will come back as...

Georgina Miranda: That’s a tough one. A mountain goat, a writer, or a spiritual teacher.

OP: Tell us one thing about yourself that no one knows.

Georgina Miranda: Gosh, I am a bit of an open book these days, I think I have put it all out there. Funny facts:

  • Voted most improved in every sport I played growing up
  • My parents sent me to pre-school only knowing the word “hello” in English so I wouldn’t lose my Spanish language. Let’s just say I didn’t find it so funny when I came home from school that day. But I am fluent in English and Spanish at a business level and very grateful for that, and it’s allowed me to work with companies all over the world.

OP: If our readers were to take one thing from this interview, what would you like it to be?

Georgina Miranda: What’s the goal in life? Joy. Live your best life, whatever that means to you. Don’t ever lose the joy in the journey and in chasing those dreams. Follow your heart.

Learn more about Georgina online and by following her on Instagram, and make sure to check out her work with She Ventures and Move 30 Collective.


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