With state recreation leaders nationwide launching collaborative plans to steward the outdoor industry, REI is pledging to be proactive in the efforts.

The Kent-based retail co-op has committed to fund travel for those leaders and their delegation to attend the second-ever Confluence Summit in North Carolina, an event bringing together state-level leaders this July. Eight states — Washington, Colorado, Montana, North Carolina, Oregon, Utah, Vermont and Wyoming — with an office, director or task force dedicated to the well-being of their local recreation industries.

“Gatherings like this can be a model for the future. They look to bridge across local, state and federal stakeholders to create a sense of shared mission and responsibility,” said REI CEO Jerry Stritzke. “This work can be foundational for creating a next generation that loves and cares for the outdoors, and is vital in shaping the future of our towns, states and country.”

The first Confluence Summit took place in Denver last month, with approximately 100 delegates and staffers taking part.