For the past seven years, WV Living magazine has selected 50 West Virginia women to be named Wonder Women for their contributions to the state.
Included in the 2020 Class of Wonder Women is Snowshoe native Sarah Eilers Guyette for her work as Vice President of Marketing and Sales at Snowshoe Mountain Resort.
“That entails the marketing department, which handles all kinds of creative campaigns and guest communication,” Guyette said of her position. “I also handle our group sales department – weddings and conferences, things like that. Our call center – all our travel planners that take reservations and answer questions about the resort.”
Guyette also oversees the On Mountain Sales or OMS and revenue management. She became VP last year, but has been working at the resort for 11 years.
“I was the director of marketing before this position and a year ago, took over the sales portion,” she said. “Most recently – the Snowshoe Foundation has their executive director who was a community liaison for Snowshoe, so the community liaison has been newly absorbed into my role as of last month.”
Guyette began her venture into marketing with earning a degree in communications from Shepherd University. From there, she wanted to explore and go anywhere but West Virginia for an entirely new experience.
“I decided after graduating, I wanted to just go somewhere brand new I’d never been before – where nobody knew me, and I’d never met anyone,” she said. “So I moved to Portland, Oregon, and worked in a snowboard shop, and then as a videographer for a place that did weddings and roller derby at the same time.”
While there were, unfortunately, never any roller derby weddings, Guyette said it was an interesting juxtaposition to have a wedding video being edited in one room and a roller derby video in the next.
“That’s where I really got started in the marketing field,” she said. “I thought videography would be it.”
But, as most West Virginians know, Guyette felt a pull to return to the mountains of West Virginia and her home in Pocahontas County.
“I got really homesick and wanted to come back,” she said. “West Virginia hills have a way of calling you. I came home and took an AmeriCorps VISTA position with the Pocahontas County Libraries and worked throughout the county, but mainly focused on creating the new Linwood branch at the base of the mountain.”
Guyette considered leaving again, but never did. Instead she took a position on the mountain and slowly worked her way up the ranks in the marketing department.
“I took a producer role in the marketing department doing videography and just kind of bounced around the department, and took different rolls – whether it was website or social media or email marketing – to get the full scope of the marketing machine, and just kind of slowly worked my way to here.”
Guyette never expected that she would be recognized for her work at the resort, but this past summer, she received a call in which she learned she was nominated and selected as one of 50 West Virginia women to be named a Wonder Woman by WV Living.
“They just called me up and said, ‘hey, we have this honor for you,’” she said. “I was very shocked; very surprised by it, but very honored to be a part of it.
“It’s a really amazing group of women because everyone has very diverse backgrounds,” she continued. “It is a lot of independent business owners, a lot of people who are community leaders. They have everything from a nurse practitioner to a documentarian to somebody who is doing equine therapy. It’s really all across the board.”
The women are usually celebrated at an annual banquet in Charleston, but due to the Covid-19 pandemic, it became a virtual event, which allowed many of the women in leadership roles at Snowshoe to attend with Guyette.
Included in that group was 2019 Wonder Woman and president and COO of Snowshoe Mountain Resort Patti Duncan.
“We all got to go to that banquet, and they tell stories about every single person who’s honored and then have a keynote speaker,” Guyette said. “This year we did it virtually, and it was really fun.”
The keynote speaker was 2018 Wonder Woman Ivin B. Lee, West Virginia’s first female police chief and Charleston’s first black female police officer.
“She has a really wonderful, inspiring story,” Guyette said.
As a member of the 2020 Class, Guyette will be on the nominating committee next year and hopes to continue to honor women in Pocahontas County, as well as the region.
“I know we’re very rural and it feels like sometimes there’s more deer than people, but it’s nice to see our county included,” she said. “I’m glad that now the nomination has come to this area, and we have a chance to recognize people next year, too.”
The Fall edition of WV Living featured photos and blurbs about all 50 Wonder Women. In describing Guy-ette, the magazine stated, “She views tourism as an opportunity to economically strengthen the region and provide more opportunity for its residents while protecting its pristine wilderness. She finds wonder and peace in the outdoors and believes nature holds an infinite learning potential.”
“It’s not just our job to invite people here,” Guyette was quoted saying, “but to help guide them through the experience and show them what we see every day.”
Guyette resides in Snowshoe with her husband, Scott, and their daughters, Genevieve, 5, and Abby, 2.
She is a 2002 graduate of Pocahontas County High School.