Ray Quinney & Nebeker’s Winter Sports Practice Group is synonymous with Utah skiing and winter sports. Comprised of lawyers who are avid skiers and boarders, RQ&N’s Winter Sports Practice Group offers not only a breadth of experience in resolving legal issues for its winter sports clients, but an understanding of those issues that only a passionate participant will possess. Our unparalleled expertise has been developed over decades of intimate involvement in all aspects of Utah’s (and the Intermountain West’s) winter sports industry.


S. Joe Quinney, a founding partner of RQ&N and ski industry pioneer, is often referred to as “the father of Utah’s ski industry.” Joe Quinney was an original incorporator of the Salt Lake Winter Sports Association in 1938 which later became the Alta Ski Lifts Company. The once-little ski area nestled in Little Cottonwood Canyon was the first to offer “lift-served skiing” in Utah. In 1969, Joe and lawyers at RQ&N drafted Utah’s passenger ski tramways safety bill, regarded as one of the finest laws of its kind in the country . After serving as the President of the Utah Ski Association and filling a myriad of roles in developing recreational skiing in Utah, Joe was inducted into the National Ski Hall of Fame in 1975.


RQ&N was integrally involved in bringing the Olympic Winter Games of 2002 to Salt Lake City. After initially providing pro bono legal services to the bid effort, RQ&N was chosen as general outside counsel to the Salt Lake Organizing Committee for the Olympic Winter Games of 2002 (“SLOC”). RQ&N assisted SLOC with all legal aspects in planning and hosting of the 2002 Games, including environmental issues, brand protection, licensing, employment, real estate acquisitions and leasing, contracts, litigation, and a host of other issues.


We are proud of Joe Quinney’s legacy, and his passion for skiing is carried on by attorneys in the Winter Sports Practice Group at RQ&N. Lawyers in our multifaceted practice group have a thorough understanding of the winter sports industry. Because of our experience, we can effectively plan, negotiate and document transactions, foresee issues, and provide innovative strategies and solutions for our clients. Members of the Winter Sports Practice Group are current and former ski patrollers, ski/snowboard instructors, and avid riders/skiers who enjoy and respect Utah’s resorts and backcountry.

We represent resorts, associations, and winter sports manufacturers in legal issues, not limited to:


  • Management Training and Consultation
  • Policies and Contract Issues
  • Administrative, State, and Federal Court Litigation


  • Product Liability
  • Skier Injuries


  • Environmental Compliance and Litigation, including NEPA
  • National Forest Management Act
  • Special-Use Permitting
  • Land Use (Master Plans, Zoning, Property Division, Land Exchange, etc.)
  • Water Rights, Water Quality, Wetland and Water Source and Supply Issues
  • Conservation Easements


  • Land Acquisition, Development and Use (Master Plans, Zoning, Property Division, Land Exchange, Condominiums, etc.)


  • Brand Protection Strategies
  • Trademark and Copyright Registration
  • Patent, Trademark, and Copyright Litigation and Enforcement
  • Licensing
  • Franchising


  • Antitrust Compliance and Guidelines
  • Counseling on Product Marketing and Distribution
  • Antitrust and Unfair Competition Disputes


  • Alf Engen Ski History Museum
  • Alta Ski Lifts Company
  • Brian Head Resort
  • Goldener Hirsch
  • Salt Lake Organizing Committee for the Olympic Winter Games of 2002
  • Solitude Resort
  • Utah Athletic Foundation / Utah Winter Sports Park
  • Utah Winter Games
  • United States Ski & Snowboard Association
  • Various manufacturers in the winter sports industry.

If you wish to speak with an attorney about your business needs and questions in this area, please contact:

Rick R. Thaler, Chair

Robert O. Rice, Vice Chair

Download PDF