Dominique Vetromile

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Diver Diva

Dominique, Nique, Dom, Domster - a woman of many names with beachy hair that is always out of control, blue eyes and usually dressed in a chic NYC black. Her daily look is completed with a coffee in hand and her dog, Ruthie scurrying around her ankles. 

What are your three most prized accomplishments?

1. Since I was 10 years old I have wanted to live in New York City. I didn't know what I would do there but I know it was a place I needed to be. I felt like life happened so loudly there, bigger than anywhere else and somehow, equally grungier and more sparkly than anywhere else. After I lived in Milan in college I knew I wanted to work in the fashion industry so I finished my degree in Public Relations with the intent of going into Fashion PR. In January of 2015 I packed two duffel bags, bought a one-way ticket and I was off. I slept on couches, took over a part-time lease and eventually signed a lease in Lower Manhattan. I worked an internship for 8 months and then I started as the in-house PR + Marketing Coordinator at a small denim brand called 3x1. I did everything I had wanted as a kid and it was so different than what I expected but I truly cherished it.

2. After almost two years in the city, I went on a family vacation to Alaska. It was a week-long whale watching trip and about 2 days into the trip I knew I couldn't return to New York. I was so happy being outside and on the water that I just couldn't imagine going back to an office job knowing all that was out there. So, I went back to the city at the end of the week, quit my job, packed my bags and moved back to Colorado where I taught skiing all winter. While moving to New York was such a huge accomplishment in itself, I also feel like recognizing that I needed something different, that my dream had changed and that the world was so much bigger than I realized was a big accomplishment as well.

3. Graduating from college felt like an enormous feat. I left for my Junior year to live in Milan, Italy and had no intention of going back to school. After a year and a half in Italy, I did decide I wanted to finish my degree and thank goodness I did because I met some of my best friends that last year of college.

What are your three favorite things to do?

I love to ski, scuba dive and be with friends + family. I spend so much time traveling that my best friends are spread all over the world, so any chance I get to be with them is really special.

Where are your three favorite places to be?

I love to be in the mountains, in the ocean or in a foreign country. There is something grounding about the mountains, the ocean always surprises me and being in a foreign country keeps me out of my comfort zone. The balance of all these things keeps me sane.

What is your greatest passion?

My greatest passion is storytelling but in terms of people. I love that the way you dress, the music you listen to, the way you take your coffee, the books you read and the pictures you keep with you all tell a story of who you are. I think we could learn so much about each other just by being a little more observant and curious about the other people in the world.

What keeps your passion alive?

I keep my passion alive through travel and I love late night conversations. I think there is something beautiful about being vulnerable and asking someone for help. Those conversations often lead to advice through stories of someone's past and a little more understanding of each other is reached. I also grew up in a family that valued travel. Learning the customs of a new country, a language or just spending time getting to know a city opens your eyes. It makes your world just a little bit bigger.

What is one thing that people don't know about you, but should?

I’ve never been on a roller coaster, but I don’t really feel the need to try it.

What is your wildest adventure?

I am not allowed to tell that story, but if we ever sit down and have a glass of wine and I’ll tell you. Instead, I’ll tell one about a night dive I did this summer. I went on a pelagic night dive in Kona, Hawaii. The boat picked us up around 10 pm and took us offshore into about 6,000 feet of water. We were then tethered to the boat and dove to about 45 feet in dark water. Very dark water. We had a spotlight light that allowed us to see all the critters that come to the surface at night to feed. There were juvenile ahi (tuna) and squid but mostly we were looking at things the size of your pinky nail. Things like larval fish, lobsters and other invertebrates, siphonophores and even cephalopods. It was one of the most amazing dives I have ever done.

If you could go anywhere and do anything, what would it be?

There are so many things I want to do! I want to do a through-hike in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. I want to go to the Himalayas and hike or ski. There are so many countries I want to visit and I definitely want to live abroad again. I'm young, I can't pick just one place I want to go and one thing I want to do...

What is your personal definition of feminism?

I think that feminism is about being unapologetic about who you are. There are no boxes, no girly girls or outdoorsy girls. I think we are all a mix and we, simply, are who we are. I think that feminism is about celebrating people no matter what and giving them space to be who they are without judgment or cruelty.

What do you find valuable in being a woman in the adventure/outdoor industry?

I think that women in the outdoor community push the envelope in some really unique and inspiring ways. It is very cool to be around a group of girls that want to push their limits and the limits of what people tell them they are capable of. I have found that the scope of what I think is possible for myself has broadened by being around women who won’t take "no" for an answer and won’t compromise on what they believe they are capable of.

Who is another woman who inspires you?

I am inspired by people who are unapologetically themselves. I am lucky in that many of the women in my life have this trait but I also think women like Emily Weiss and Ruthie Lindsey live life exactly the way they want - unapologetically. They also push the boundaries of what people thought was possible in their own unique ways. It’s awesome.

In the coming years, where would you like to see women in sports/adventure/outdoors?

I want to see women continue to push themselves and the sports they love. I think we can do anything. It is amazing to see women pushing the boundaries of what they can be told they can do - I hope to see that continue.