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Northland Challenge 2012: Caucasus

Aug 12, 2012

Our clients, suppliers and staff take on difficult challenges daily in the pursuit of making global enterprises more secure. Most of the time, we all know what we are doing, rely on our experience, training and policies. But some of the time, we are put in a situation in which we do not have specific experience or training. However, we simply overcome the challenges and get it done. What we do affects the safety and security of others.

We started the idea of the Challenge quite simply with two people in 2008 with the idea of putting ourselves outside our comfort zone. In 2010, fourteen people joined in, and this year we are twenty-two. As an organization we look to take on difficult challenges on a global stage, deliver excellent results while having fun. The Challenge is intended to create an environment in which we must overcome our environment and given conditions with limited resources.

Why the Caucasus I am often asked. After two fantastic Tuk Tuk challenges in India, it was time for a change to the completely unknown. To Western businesspeople, the Caucasus is very much the unknown. We are certain we will encounter new situations we will need to navigate to successfully arrive at the end.

Lastly, although we have completed projects in some 50 countries over the past few years, we are constantly asked what about this country? Or that country? To which we can only respond we are confident that our approach to projects, challenges and life will ensure we will do as good a job or better than anyone else doing work in any of those countries. The Caucasus trip is a way for a bunch of us to take on a challenge as a team, share the difficulties and enjoy the unknown. Too many times as individuals we are in a country, and only see the inside of an equipment closet, a conference room, or the hotel restaurant. We believe it is important to occasionally stop and smell the roses.

The Teams
(1) Caucasian Invasion
Shelly Pearce & John Ventura

(2) Traveling with the Stars
Mark Avison & Eric Van Muijen

(3) Road Dogs
Marco Ruttar & John Foster

(4) Bear Nutz
Michael Riedl & Zach Henderson

(5) Ursus Contentus
Marc Zeiger & David Skeber

(6) Driving Miss Daisy
Kim Fagan & Paul Thomas

(7) Wreck & Roll
Alan Riegler & Jim Conley

(8) Chacha Trek 2012
Tim Nestor & Patricia Trapanese

(9) Midnight Express
Charles Duncan & Alonso Carrasco

(10) Virus Enforcer
James Thorpe-Kingsley & Kevin Wang