Klim Retires, Snowmobile Assoc. Gets A New Leader In Smith

For more than a quarter-century, Ed Klim has been the face of the snowmobile world to lawmakers, administrators, rules-makers, dealers, grassroots leaders and more. But on January 15 a new (yet familiar to many) face will take the helm.

     It was announced this morning (January 5) that Klim is retiring as the leader of the International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association (ISMA). Yamaha veteran Jaret Smith is taking his place.

     Klim may not have necessarily been a known face to Joe or Jane common snowmobiler. But he’s been a vitally important leader of the sport since taking the lead spot at ISMA in 1995.

     In that position, he has dealt with issues big and small, in North America and beyond, related to snowmobiling at the behest of the major snowmobile manufacturers. Whether it was emissions, land access, safety programs, international manufacturing standards, working with grassroots organizations, the Clean Snowmobile Challenge, industry sales data, joint photo shoots or more, Klim has been a steady hand at the wheel.

     Behind the scenes, keeping the four snowmobile manufacturers working together through the ISMA organization has been a major accomplishment in itself. Previous attempts at industry associations before ISMA fell apart when one manufacturer or another would leave for various reasons.

Ed klim
Ed Klim of the International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association, speaking at the 2022 International Snowmobile Congress in Dubuque, Iowa.

     That said, among insiders there has been speculation how long Klim would want to continue in the job. He has has reached his middle 70s.

     And, for the record, he has absolutely no tie to the Klim snowmobile outerwear brand. That question’s been asked by many over the years. It was just an odd coincidence that Ed Klim (pronounced “Klim” with a soft “I”) joined the industry a few years before apparel brand Klim (pronounced “Climb” with a hard “I”) came to the market.   

Snowmobile Association To Be Led By Jaret Smith

When Klim was hired to run the newly formed ISMA in 1995, the sled manufacturers grabbed him from the Recreational Vehicles Industry Association due to his experience running that sort of organization.

     This time, then went with somebody from inside the snowmobiling industry.

Jaret Smith
Yamaha veteran Jaret Smith will take the lead at the International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association.

     Jaret Smith has in many ways been the outside face of Yamaha’s snowmobile division in recent years. After earning a degree in engineering and experience working at a dealership, he started with Yamaha in 2016. He was a snowmobile product and accessory planner and moved up to snowmobile product manager in 2018.

     In March of 2022, he added the title of Manager, Yamaha Motor Canada and North America Snowmobile Operations. In his various Yamaha roles, he has also served on many ISMA boards/committees. So, he knows some of ISMA’s inner workings, and the folks from the other manufacturers know him.

     Many consumers may recognize Smith from videos on Yamaha’s social media pages. There, he’s given updates from the brand, given tech tips and shared various news.

     Some of that news was the planned demise of Yamaha’s snowmobile division after the 2025 model year. That 2025 model lineup will likely be announced sometime in the next 10 weeks or so. Then, had Smith stayed with Yamaha, he would have transition to a different role within the company.  

     Here at Snow Goer, we’ve always found Smith to be engaging, knowledgeable, easy to work with and diligent. We’re looking forward to dealing with him in his new role. And we wish Ed the very best going forward – he’s been a pleasure to work with.    

     Below is the full press release from ISMA:

International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association Names Jaret Smith President

Ed Klim Retiring after more than 25 years of service

(Jan. 5, 2024) – The International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association (ISMA), today announced that Ed will retire from his position as President in 2024. Jaret will serve as President, effective January 15, 2024.

“In my time serving on the ISMA Board of Directors, I’ve had the privilege to work with Ed as he led the organization and helped cultivate and grow the Snowmobile industry,” said Troy Halvorson, Arctic Cat, ISMA BOD Member. “His passion for the industry and advancing the sport has had an immeasurable impact and we are deeply grateful for his years of distinguished service.”

Ed began his tenure with ISMA in 1995 and has made significant contributions to the Snowmobile industry in the last 28 years including establishing “Safe Riders” safety program and training and working with Snowmobile enthusiasts to keep Yellowstone National Park open to snowmobiling. Ed will work closely with Jaret during this transition period.


“Jaret brings with him a wealth of Snowmobile industry experience in fostering strong relationships with industry partners to promote the sport, and we are excited to have him continue those efforts as President of the organization,” said Halvorson.

Jaret joins ISMA with more than 10 years of snowmobile industry experience, most recently with Yamaha, where he served as Manager of the North American Snowmobile Division. Prior to that, he spent three years at a at a powersports dealership driving growth and modernization. Smith has also served as Board Director at ISMA and previously contributed to the ISMA Statistics Committee, Technical Standards Committee (SSCC & SAE) and the ISMA Communications Committee. Jaret brings with him a life-long passion for snowmobiling, logging more than 2,500 miles annually across the U.S. and Canada.

About ISMA

The International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association (ISMA) was established in 1995 and is an organization representing the four snowmobile manufacturers. ISMA coordinates committees within the industry to handle concerns such as snowmobile safety, the promotion of the lifestyle activity of snowmobiling, keeping accurate statistics, reporting the growth of the industry and the positive economic impact of snowmobiling throughout the world. ISMA maintains strong partnerships with the Canadian Council of Snowmobile Organizations (CCSO/CCOM) and the American Council of Snowmobile Associations (ACSA) .

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