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Rock Climber Paul Piana to Speak at UW


February 23, 2012 — Legendary Wyoming rock climber Paul Piana will deliver the third Todd Skinner Leadership Lecture Tuesday, Feb. 28, at 7:30 p.m.at the University of Wyoming Yellowstone Ballroom. Admission is free.

A native of Newcastle, Piana is recognized as one of rock climbing's most influential and prolific free climbers. He has more than 600 first free ascents and teamed with fellow Wyomingite Todd Skinner on many first ascents, ranging in locales from Greenland to the Amazon jungle. Piana received his bachelor's degree in English literature from UW.

Piana and Skinner became pioneers in the emerging sport of gymnastic rock-climbing in the 1980s and 1990s. Skinner, who resided in Lander, was killed in a 2006 climbing accident in Yosemite National Park. 

Piana has appeared in many films and videos about free-climbing adventures, including ESPN's "Amazon Journey to the Lost World" and Outdoor Life's "Into the Dragon's Teeth: Climbing in Viet Nam." In 1988, he and Skinner received the American Alpine Club's most prestigious Underhill Award for Lifetime Climbing.

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Legendary Wyoming rock climber Paul Piana will deliver the third Todd Skinner Leadership Lecture Tuesday, Feb. 28, at 7:30 p.m. in the Wyoming Union Yellowstone Ballroom.

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