Not only has RDM produced a few of snowboarding’s era-defining movie parts, he (alongside amigos JP Solberg and DCP) also runs his own snowboard company, YES. Hot off a season back filming with Absinthe, we hit him up to talk business… 

Has running your own brand opened your eyes to anything that you maybe didn’t appreciate when you were a team rider?
It made me see the other side of our sport, the business side, which I had an idea of how it was but didn’t really know how it was. Now I have a better understanding on why this and why that [happens], but I try to approach the business side with a rider’s perspective, and not as a businessman.

You’re all riders of the highest calibre. What do you guys look for when you want to recruit someone to the team?
Thanks for the props. YES is more than just a snowboarding company. When we started six years ago, DCP, JP and myself wanted to give back what snowboarding gave us – a lifestyle, a way of conducting your life true the sport we love. YES is a way of living this lifestyle, so this is what we are looking for in a rider that will be on the YES team.

It seems rare for pro and ex-pro riders to take run their own companies compared to, say, skateboarding. Would you agree?
Yes, I think snowboarding as changed into two groups the past decade: we have the ones that are core and close to the roots of snowboarding, and the [other] more popular one. I feel that there is more infatuation for the core that want to see snowboarding being run by snowboarders, so we could see a change in the future.

If more riders would run brands, would snowboarding benefit?
Who know snowboarding better than a snowboarder? I think it can only beneficial for the sport if more athletes take control; this goes not only for snowboarders.

Do you think many snowboard brands focus too much on youth and ignore the input more experienced riders can offer?
I feel that in snowboarding we are forgetting the roots in some ways so, yes, forgetting to take care of our legendary peers. I’d like to see snowboarding following surfing’s spirit, and skateboarding where the legends are still in front of the camera so the youth can understand the culture and roots of the sport they’re into. But I feel that we are changing slowly.

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