Roots Rated: How to be a KEEN Ambassador

29 05 2014

Ever wonder how someone becomes a brand ambassador? What do you do? What are the benefits, besides free gear? Any downsides? Well I wrote all about it for RootsRated. The story includes an interview with Ben Mauser, Ambassador Honcho for KEEN, and some inside perspective from yours truly. Click here to check it out.





10 responses

30 05 2014
Tamara Muldoon


I hope things are going well for you. It’s taken a week, but I finally feel like I’m back to normal after my Spokane adventures.

How do you send these snazzy messages from WordPress? Is it a “plug in” for WordPress or some other tool? I like the way it looks and that people can unsubscribe or manage subscriptions. I’d love to know if you are willing to share. ๐Ÿ™‚

Tamara Muldoon

Writer | Photographer

Office: 503.631.3929

Mobile: 503.998.2722

30 05 2014

Hey Tamara,

Not exactly sure what you mean by “Snazzy messages.” Email notifications? I’ll get with you offline and figure it out ๐Ÿ™‚

30 05 2014

Sadly, as any given brand gains popularity and veers off into modern media fluff and glitter the quality often begins a downhill slide.
Keen has been my footwear of choice for nearly 15 years now, but the last two pairs have shown the inevitable signs of cheaper manufacture, wearing out twice as fast as any previous pair.
I’ll welcome any suggestions for quality footwear from folks with boots on the ground, and pass on any from those with boots on the desk.

30 05 2014

Hi ehkstram,

Sorry to hear about the issues you’ve had with your last two pairs of KEENs. I would suggest getting in contact with them, as I know that sort of issue doesn’t sit lightly with those folks. I won’t pretend to know everything that goes on with KEEN or their quality control, but everything I’ve witnessed shows a continued commitment to community as well as product standards. I’m not sure what happened with regards to your last couple pairs, but over the last two years I hiked to every waterfall I could find in the state of Oregon, and I still own the pair that got me to 90% of those cascades. I’ve had my boots on the ground almost non-stop, I hope you give them the opportunity to take care of yours. Sounds like you’re on the ground quite a bit as well ๐Ÿ™‚

30 05 2014

Thank you for your reply Adam, and for posting what could be viewed as a disparaging comment…
The second to the last pair held for about a year before having the sole separate from the uppers on an inside edge, possibly due to my propensity for kicking rocks aside in the trail as I pass…
The current (last) pair has de-laminated at the sole after less than 2 months, and I am no longer doing trail work. This flaw I also noticed with Merrill boots after they had gone “mainstream” as a less expensive boot. Numerous other outdoor products follow this same pattern… the original product is well made and engineered, after popularity and confidence has been gained the quality goes down (sometimes drastically, Jet Boil stoves is a good example) while the retail price remains the same. I can’t help but wonder if the cost of producing quality goods is short circuited by the expense of social media style hype and advertizing…

30 05 2014

Hi again Ehkstream,

I sincerely apologize for anything I said in my reply that came across as disparaging. I assure you that was not my intent in the slightest. I appreciate your input and don’t doubt for a moment the issues you have experienced with the product. My intention was just to communicate that I am proud to represent the company and have not personally experienced any slip in quality. Again, I would encourage you to contact them directly regarding the problems you experienced with your last two pairs. I’m confident they will make it better. Thanks again for taking to time to comment, and please accept my apologies for coming across as anything other than respectful. If you ever want to hit the trail or grab a cup of coffee sometime, I would welcome the opportunity ๐Ÿ™‚

31 05 2014

Goodness no, Adam! I was commending you for posting MY critical comment! I appreciate your perspective, and especially the willingness to engage in discourse.
I guess I’m considered “old school” nowadays. In this era of consumerism, planned obsolescence, etc, etc, I hark back to the days when one met a hiker on the Appalachian Trail who had his Merrills custom made from the foot tracings sent to the one or two bootmakers in their Maine (New Hampshire?) shop… we’ll never find that trail again… -chuckle-
Pardon the misinterpretation, I glean much from your posts and look forward to your perspectives.
I’m more of a working man, former wildland firefighter and trail crew foreman, still on the trail and learning to adapt to modern backwoods recreational pursuits.
As far as a cup of coffee, the Green Salmon in Yachats has good brew, I’m up river about 8.25 miles as the Subarus go… ๐Ÿ˜‰

31 05 2014

Oh my…..I see now. Well color me embarrassed ๐Ÿ™‚ You’re not “old school” in my book, friend. I try to learn as many lessons as I can from the school you attend ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks again for your input. I appreciate it all the more now that I’ve got my head screwed on straight. And the next time I’m down Yachats way, I’ll try and take you up on that cup of coffee ๐Ÿ™‚

31 05 2014

By all means! If you turn over enough rocks on my blog you’ll uncover an e-mail address, drop a line and we’ll get our boots wet ๐Ÿ™‚

31 05 2014

You got a deal ๐Ÿ™‚

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