Published the 08 August 2014
Commitment with passion... and reflection. A phrase that could well describe Jean Béranger... Mr Jean Béranger.
One of Val Thorens' great men
A seminal figure in French skiing, Allevard born Jean Béranger was amongst the creators of the Val Thorens resort. A key player in the development of the highest altitude resort in Europe, he founded Val Thorens' French Ski School and is popularly recognised as one of the Tourist Office's foremost managers and presidents.
From the French Team to the Presidency of the French Skiing Federation
An experienced skier who was selected to be part of the French National Team a number of times, it was Béranger's role as coach that really made the headlines. A close friend of Honoré Bonnet, he went on to become the architect of sisters Christine and Marielle Goitschel's success in the 66' world championship in Portillo, and again in the 68' Olympic Games in Grenoble. After marrying Christine in 1966, he brought his career as national coach to an end in 1972. One year earlier, he was made vice-president of the National Syndicate of Instructors, a post he occupied until 1989. Throughout this period, Jean Béranger was a regular participant in the famous Instructors Challenge!
The director of the Savoie Ski Committee, and deputy mayor of St Martin de Belleville, he was elected President of the French Ski Federation in 2002. For a great number of his friends, he was above all considered a poised consensus builder "someone we would go to when we needed to reach a solution."
Before his unexpected death during a bicycle ride on the 17th of August 2012, Jean Béranger made a profound impact on the world of skiing and the French mountains.
Every year, Val Thorens honours his memory at the Jean Béranger Val Tho Downhill Memorial event.