Meet The Team

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Shara Zaia

Co-Founder
 

Shara is a first-generation Assyrian-American climber, educator, and community organizer based in Denver, CO. After nearly a decade of teaching and advocating for underserved children in early childhood classrooms, she is focusing her advocacy efforts on the climbing community. Her dream is to pair her passions for education and the outdoors in an effort to break down barriers within the sport so that everyone can experience the mental, physical, and emotional benefits. She is a SCARPA mentor, published author, industry model, and co-founder of Cruxing in Color.  She also serves the American Alpine Club as the Manager of Climb United where she will continue to shift the culture of climbing towards inclusivity and joy. Learn more about Shara at sharazaia.com.

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Menesha Mannepperuma

Co-Founder
 

Menesha is a Sri Lankan-American climber who has been climbing for around ten years. She primarily boulders and started climbing in California followed by a move to Colorado five years ago. Professionally, she’s a former lawyer turned product manager. Menesha is excited to see climbing diversify and thinks it’s important to build a space for climbers of color to connect. When she first started climbing, it was hard for her to find and climb with other people of color. As a co-founder of Cruxing in Color, she hopes to make it easier and less intimidating for other climbers of color to access climbing culture and opportunities.

CIC is fully powered by volunteers.
We appreciate everyone who has played a role in building this beautiful community!

Read About Us!

Climbing Has a Diversity Problem. Cruxing in Color is Working to Change That

“They’re Giving it Their All”: The Cost of BIPOC Affinity Groups

Fighting Life's Trials as a BIPOC Through Climbing
 

Outdoors and Free

(pg. 56-57)