Dan Empfield - Slowtwitch Publisher: Born in California in 1957, Empfield is a graduate of South Tahoe High School and the University of Nevada (Reno), earning a Bachelor of Science in biology.
Empfield competed in his first triathlon in 1978, and in the first Ironman held on Hawaii's Big Island, in 1981.
He designed the original triathlon wetsuit, and founded wetsuit manufacturer Quintana Roo in 1987.
In 1989 Empfield debuted another design, the first bike "built from the aerobars back." The first Quintana Roo Superform had 650c wheels front and back, and an 80-degree seat angle. Today's modern triathlon and time trial bikes are progeny of the Superform.
He sold Quintana Roo to Saucony, Inc., in 1995, and stayed on to run Saucony's bike division - which included Quintana Roo and Merlin - for four years. He left in 1999 and founded Slowtwitch.com.
In 2003 Empfield developed the F.I.S.T. Tri Bike Fit System for triathletes, featuring "stack" and "reach," a set of bike fit metrics now popular among tri and road bike manufacturers and fitters. He's given fit clinics and workshops all over the United States and Europe. Today many modern fit systems employ the protocol, mechanics and metrics that are the backbone of the F.I.S.T. fit system.
Empfield was inducted into the Triathlete Magazine Hall of Fame in 2004, and received the World Open Water Swimming Association's (WOWSA) lifetime achievement award in 2010.
Empfield is a former USA Triathlon board member and, along with Lew Kidder, helped craft a set of USAT bylaws that reformed voting procedures, and redrew USAT voting regions. Most of those bylaws and districts remain in force today.
Empfield hosted the U.S. Professional National Triathlon Championship in 1998, held in accordance with Olympic draft-legal rules. This race was part of the first national series devoted to Olympic-rules triathlon – a series Empfield produced and funded.
Empfield continues to write for, and publish, Slowtwitch.com. He still swims, bikes, runs and races several times a year. He lives with wife Tanya, dogs, and horses on 8 acres in the San Gabriel Mountains of Southern California.
Herbert Krabel - Slowtwitch Editor in Chief: Born and raised in Southern Germany, Krabel graduated from Temple University in Philadelphia with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication in 1991.
While working full time at WYBE-TV 35 in Philadelphia as an editor, Krabel raced Mountain Bikes in the Pro category from 1991 through 1996. In 1997 he accepted a position as the Director of Marketing for Litespeed Titanium, the company he had raced for professionally. After the acquisition of the brands Quintana Roo and Merlin in 1999, the company became the American Bicycle Group and Krabel took over world wide marketing for all the brands.
In the spring of 2007 Krabel left the American Bicycle Group to start his non traditional marketing firm called Guerrilla Communication. That summer he also accepted the Editor in Chief position for Slowtwitch.com. He currently holds both these positions.
Krabel's athletic experiences include various Ironman finishes, the 24 Hours of Canaan in West Virginia, Wilderness 101 and Punxsutawney 50 in Pennsylvania and the Iditabike in Alaska. He lives with his wife Amy Hildreth and Silvie the feisty cat in Winston-Salem, NC.
Jordan Rapp - Slowtwitch Chief Technology Officer: After spending four years studying mechanical and aerospace engineering at Princeton University, Jordan Rapp only really came to enjoy it as a result of triathlon. A novice in all three sports, the idea of using equipment to go faster seemed like a great idea to a college rower used to racing for six minutes. 2012 was his 10th season of racing, and 7th as a pro, though he's enjoying a second crack at this whole triathlon thing and at life after being nearly killed in a hit-and-run in March of 2010 while riding his bicycle.
He earned his rainbow stripes by winning the ITU Long Distance World Championships in 2011. He's a five-time Ironman winner (US Championships in New York '12, Texas '12, Canada '09 & '11, and Arizona '09). And his first trip to the big dance in Kona in 2012 saw him finishing lucky number 13.
As CTO, Jordan is in charge of wrangling the multi-headed hydra of a website that is Slowtwitch.com. Despite being a somewhat Sisyphean ordeal, he nevertheless does his best to make sure Slowtwitch walks and talks the way it is supposed to. If you like Slowtwitch, feel free to let him know. If you don't, please tell Dan instead. Armed with his trusty Macbook Air, he tries to stay one step ahead of his ever growing “To Do” list.
More than a bit of a technophile, Jordan does the occasional product review for the site. Nothing makes him happier than cardboard boxes, with the possible exception of swim goggles, so this is the opiate that offsets the occasionally overwhelming job of coding the site.
Jordan also co-instructed the F.I.S.T. bike fit workshops with Dan for several years, where they helped people find enlightenment aboard a bicycle, before taking a leave of absence after the birth of his son. In addition to F.I.S.T.ing people, you can regularly find him around Xantusia where his favorite activity is climbing the mountain to Wrightwood, which is just about the only time Dan lets him away from his laptop.
Jordan is married to Canadian Olympian Jill Savege (Athens '04), winner of three ITU World Cups, and the holder of the best Kona debut in the house with a 10th place in 2001. They have one child - Quentin Thomas - born in 2011.
Greg Kopecky - Slowtwitch Editor-At-Large: A true Midwesterner, Kopecky was born and raised in central Indiana. He graduated with a degree in Organizational Leadership and Supervision from Purdue University, in West Lafayette. In addition to his formal education, Kopecky minored in reading Slowtwitch.com and riding his bike through the cornfields.
His sporting life began at a young age, joining the local club swim team at age seven. Over time, he took to distance running and weight training. Rather than pursue swimming as a college sport, Kopecky chose to join the university’s student-managed Triathlon Club. This fostered a huge interest in the sport (in particular, the mechanical workings of bicycles), and led to the meeting of his now-wife at Collegiate Nationals in Reno, NV.
During college, Kopecky spent his summers working in a bike shop, and expanded his knowledge with book purchases and free education on the internet. After college, he worked for Zipp and SRAM, doing sports marketing and athlete support for ‘skinny tire’ cycling disciplines – triathlon, road, cyclocross, and track. He took up his lifelong passion for writing in April of 2012, as the Tech Editor for Slowtwitch.com and LAVA Magazine (thanks to an endorsement from his friend, Jordan Rapp). After two years and many, many tech articles, Kopecky stepped down from the Tech Editor position, and took on a career with ISM Saddles as Brand Commander. He remains as an Editor-at-Large and occasional contributor to Slowtwitch when the creative itch finds him.
Timothy Carlson - Slowtwitch Senior Correspondent and Photographer: Born in Daytona Beach, Florida, Carlson is a graduate of Seabreeze Senior High where he set a school record for most touchdown passes caught (and dropped) and ran a leg on the state champion 880 relay in which he did not drop the baton. He also cleared 8 feet 6 inches in the pole vault, landing six feet past the pit, tumbled into a beautiful girl and subsequently asked her out. At Harvard College, he punted for the freshman football squad until he sailed a kick into a stuff wind which came backward, forcing him to down the ball before it settled in the Crimson's end zone. In his sophomore year, he took pictures for the Harvard Crimson daily newspaper and was on assignment inside University Hall during a student occupation when he was arrested with the demonstrators by Cambridge police. After successfully smuggling his pictures out of jail, several of his photos appeared in Life Magazine coverage of the event.
In an eclectic post graduate period, he taught expository writing and worked as a freelance writer and photographer during which he covered a wide range of events including the Super Bowl, the Democratic and Republican conventions, a coal miner's strike in West Virginia, the Daytona 500, NBA finals and Palestinian refugees in Lebanon. In his most exciting assignment, he served as a co-driver for the Polish Racing Drivers of America Ford Econoline van in the original Cannonball Sea-to-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash race from New York to Redondo Beach, California. With a makeshift 120-gallon fuel tank, no one smoked and the first gas stop was in Missouri.
Finally gaining regular employment, he worked as a staff writer at the Los Angeles Herald Examiner for 10 years, during which he wrote for the Style, Sports, News, Magazine and editorial sections. During one feature assignment, he rode as passenger at Riverside raceway in an off road truck which flipped end over end. In another assignment to cover a murder in south central LA, he was abducted and held overnight by a crack addict. At the Herald's demise, he went to work for the LA Bureau of TV Guide magazine. During that four year stint, he wrapped up a 10-year career racing off road motorcycles (which included one spectacular crash which required he be airlifted from Erendira to Scripps Hospital in San Diego)co-riding to a 5th place finish in the Open Motorcycle division in the 1992 Baja 1000.
Also during this period, Carlson took up running and triathlon. On a freelance assignment for the LA Times covering the 1993 Hawaiian Ironman, Dan Empfield lent the newbie a bike to ride on the Queen K and thus he was forever hooked on the magnificent sport.
From 1994 to 1999, Carlson wrote and took pictures for various multisport magazines including Triathlete, Competitor, Multisport and Winning. From 1999 to July 2008, he moved to Boulder and served as editor and then senior correspondent for Inside Triathlon. Since then, he happily signed on with the Slowtwitch crew.
Jonathan Toker - Slowtwitch Science Editor: Jonathan is an elite-level runner and triathlete who hails from Canada and lives in Southern California. He received a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from The Scripps Research Institute in 2001, and raced in the professional ranks as a triathlete and runner for 5 years. A 9-time Ironman finisher, with a personal best of 9:13, Jonathan recently completed the arduous 6-day TransRockies running stage race and continues to seek new athletic challenges. Dr. Toker worked as a scientist in the biotech industry for 5 years prior to launching his unique SaltStick Electrolyte Capsule and Dispenser lineup.
Tanya Williams - Slowtwitch Business Manager: Tanya comes from a background as a technical writer but her chief tasks, beyond managing the office, are Social Secretary and Whip Cracker.
Also among Tanya's duties are those that attend being Mrs. Slowman, so, the two horses, seven dogs, and one husband are fed, housed, made presentable to guests and visitors, and kept from barking and braying and otherwise annoying the neighbors.
Mark Montgomery Xantusia Camp Host and Chief Storytelling Officer: Montomery's five-acre gentleman's ranch, adjacent to Empfield's ranchette (the collection of properties is called "Xantusia"), is the place where visiting pro triathletes, workshop attendees, manufacturers and others headquarter themselves while on the property. "Monty's" job is to house, feed, and ride and run with with guests of Xantusia, and to continue his quest for the perfect margarita.
Monty began his multisport career in the early 70's as a lifeguard working the beaches of Los Angeles County. His forte was the "Lifeguard Ironman" which included swimming, running, paddling, rowing, and kayaking. In 1978 he began training for his first triathlon and won his first 3 races. Since then Mark has over 60 multisport wins in over 400 races during a 15 year pro career as a triathlete and bike racer.
Montgomvery has also worked "behind the camera" in triathlon, as promoter and race director of over 50 races, including the Los Angeles Triathlon Series (ongoing since 1982). He founded the Triaction Sports triathlon shop in the late 80's, which at the time was the shop to the stars and headquarters for the latest in new technology. He worked closely with Dan Empfield in designing the tri-specific bike and wetsuit.
Montgomery went back to work for the L.A. County Fire Department in 1994 as a full time lifeguard retiring in 2003. He had a pacemaker installed in 2001, and after 18 months of recovery got himself back in shape and qualified for the U.S. Worlds team in the 45+ age group. He competed on the U.S. team in both New Zealand and Portugal (World Championship sites for 2003 and 2004).