Columbia Sportswear began as a family-owned hat distributor. Former chairwoman Gert Boyle's parents, Paul and Marie Lamfrom, fled Nazi Germany in 1937 and immediately purchased a Portland hat distributorship. The company became Columbia Hat Company, named for the nearby Columbia River. In 1948, Gert married Neal Boyle, who became the head of the company. Frustrations over suppliers influenced the family to start manufacturing their own products, and Columbia Hat Company became Columbia Sportswear Company in 1960.In 1970, Neal Boyle died following a heart attack. Gert and son Tim Boyle, then a University of Oregon senior, took over the operations of Columbia, rescuing it from bankruptcy. Gert Boyle served as company president from 1970 until 1988 and additionally became chairman of its board of directors in 1983. She remained chairman until her death in 2019. Tim Boyle succeeded his mother as Columbia's president and CEO in 1988 and continues to hold the position in 2019.Columbia became a publicly traded company in 1998. It acquired footwear maker Sorel in 2000 and Mountain Hardwear in 2003. In 2006, Columbia acquired the Pacific Trail and Montrail brands, and in 2014 they acquired prAna.
In 2001, the company moved its headquarters from Portland to a site in an unincorporated part of Washington County, in the Cedar Mill area and just outside the Beaverton city limits. The site on NW Science Park Drive has a Portland mailing address, but is not in Portland. In 2007, City of Portland officials attempted to convince Columbia Sportswear to move back to Portland, but the company ultimately rejected the idea due to the increased corporate tax burden such a move would entail and decided to expand its existing headquarters instead.In 2001, it was the largest American retailer of ski apparel based on gross revenue.On June 15, 2008, Columbia Sportswear announced a three-year sponsorship of the cycling team formerly known as Team High Road and before that T-Mobile and Team Telekom. The sponsorship began on July 5, 2008, with the start of the Tour de France. The team's name was "Team Columbia". The sponsorship included both the men's and women's teams, and ended at the end of 2010.On August 4, 2010, Columbia Sportswear Company signed an agreement to acquire OutDry Technologies S.r.l., which owns the intellectual property and other assets comprising the OutDry brand and related business, via a cash purchase from Nextec S.r.l., based near Milan, Italy. The transaction was expected to close during the third quarter of 2010, subject to customary closing conditions, and is not expected to have a material effect on the company's 2010 operating results.In March 2015, Bryan Timm was named president of the company, taking over that position from Tim Boyle, who remained CEO. In May 2017 it was announced Timm would step down and the duties of president would revert to Tim Boyle.On November 3, 2019, chairwoman Gert Boyle died at the age of 95. Tim Boyle was named as Acting Chairman of the company's board of directors.In October 2020, the company announced that alpaca wool would no longer be a part of their collections, including their other brands PrAna, Mountain Hardwear and Sorel.
Mr. Joseph P. Boyle (Exec. VP & Columbia Brand Pres)
Mr. Skip Potter (Exec. VP & Chief Digital Information Officer)
Mr. Andrew Shuler Burns CFA (Director of Investor Relations & Competitive Intelligence)
Ms. Mary Ellen Glynn (Sr. Director of Corp. Communications)
Mr. Pri Shumate (Chief Marketing Officer)
Ms. Richelle T. Luther (Sr. VP of Corp. Affairs & Chief Human Resource Officer)
Ms. Lisa A. Kulok (Exec. VP & Chief Supply Chain Officer)
Recognition and Awards
Mr. Timothy P. Boyle (Chairman, CEO & Pres)
Mr. Jim A. Swanson (Exec. VP & CFO)
Mr. Peter J. Bragdon (Exec. VP, Chief Admin. Officer, Gen. Counsel & Sec.)