Mark – General Manager
10 Things to Know About Mark
- My favorite food is: cheese – the smellier, the better!
- I have degrees from: BA in Economics and Political Science, Queens College; MBA from Baruch College
- I started rock climbing because: I have always had a passion for climbing things: my parents said that I used to climb out of my crib all the time, I spent an abnormal amount of time climbing trees when I was little, and I used to make harnesses from my father’s belts to climb the railings when I was in elementary school. Once I found Island Rock existed in 1996, I directed my passion to rocks and never stopped.
- I like working at Island Rock because: I love constantly being around fun and interesting people who share a similar desire to climb or want to explore climbing for the first time.
- I have worked at Island Rock since: 1999
- My pet peeve: when my extra sauce or dressing in a food delivery is forgotten.
- My favorite animal: penguin
- My favorite word: loquacious
- Pets and their name: my daughter is starting to crawl – does she count?
- My favorite outdoor activities include: rock climbing, ice climbing, hiking, kayaking, swimming, and mountain and road biking
Jen – Manager
12 Things to Know About Jen
- My favorite food: Thanksgiving leftovers
- My favorite book: Welcome to the Monkey House by Kurt Vonnegut
- My educational degrees include: B.S., Business Administration, Studio Art Minor, Stony Brook University; M.A., Public Policy, Stony Brook University; J.D., Fordham University School of Law
- I started rock climbing because: It was something I always wanted to try. I was 16 when a youth group trip to Island Rock was offered and I signed up immediately.
- I like working at Island Rock because: The best thing about Island Rock for me is the sense of community. Sharing experiences with customers and staff members has been what has kept me at Island Rock for so long.
- My favorite place to climb outdoors: Otter Cliffs in Maine has been my favorite
- I have worked at Island Rock since: 2000
- Pet peeve? Pickles, they offend all 5 of my senses individually
- Favorite animal? Ferret
- 2 future goals? Travel to all seven continents, continuing training to eat spicier foods
- Favorite word? Ubiquitous
- Some of my hobbies include: Yoga, hiking, rock climbing, wine
Anthony – Manager
11 Things to Know About Anthony
- My favorite food is: sushi
- My favorite book: IT
- I started rock climbing because: one of my friends introduced me
- One of my favorite reasons I like working at Island Rock: Meeting new people
- My favorite place to climb outdoors: The Gunks
- I can climb: 5.12 and V6
- I have worked at Island Rock for: 5 years
- My desired superhero power: Flight
- My pet: iguana named Yoshi
- My favorite outdoor activity: Climbing
- Some of my hobbies include: Climbing, cooking and video games
Danielle – Youth Program Director and Retail Manager
11 Things to Know About Danielle
- My favorite food: Mashed potatoes
- My favorite movie: Your Name
- My degree: Associates Degree in both Maths and Sciences
- I started rock climbing because: I took a rock climbing course in college and was hooked from there
- I like working at Island Rock because: I like helping people accomplish their goals; the looks on their faces afterwards is priceless
- My favorite place to climb outdoors: The Gunks
- I have climbed: 5.11 and V5
- Pet peeve: When people don’t use their blinkers
- My favorite animal: Elephant
- Pets and their names: Dog - Galileo, Iguana - Yoshi, Gerbils - Rick and Morty, Bearded Dragon - Jeff, Fire-Bellied Toads (4) - The Power Rangers, Ferrets - Robyn and Lil John
- Favorite outdoor activities? Running, Hiking, Climbing, Swimming
Chris – Staff Training Manager and Senior Instructor
11 Things to Know About Chris
- What drives you: My car
- My favorite movie is: Rockstar
- My favorite book is: Mother Night
- I like working at Island Rock because: The atmosphere of the gym is really awesome, I love meeting new people and making connections with guests that climb here - it makes the work day go by really fast!
- I can climb: 5.10b and V4
- I have worked at Island Rock for: 3 years
- If I were in a talent show, I would: I make my own music on guitar, so I would play a song.
- My mother always says: Hello
- My best quality is: I can only pick one?
- Pets and their names: Sara - Puggle, Rocky - Pamapoo
- My favorite outdoor activities include: Climbing, Rugby, fires in my backyard'
DJ - Routesetter
5.5 Things to Know About DJ
- Favorite book: The outsiders
- I like working at Island Rock because: The community is filled with amazing people
- I max out at: V8 and5.12
- My desired superpower: Read minds
- My favorite animal: Panda
- My pets include: 1 cat
Lee – Routesetter
11 Things to Know About Lee
- I’m driven by: I’m driven by the activities I get to pursue in my life and the relationships I build because of these activities. I lived 21 years in my hometown, then decided to leave and explore more and now I have a hunger to see the world and meet rad people from all walks of life.
- My favorite movie: Wall-E
- My favorite book is: 1984
- I like rock climbing because: Rock Climbing has taken me to some of the most beautiful places in the country and gives me experiences and relationships that help me grow as a person.
- I like working at Island Rock because: It is a fun job! A relaxed atmosphere with a great community makes work great.
- My favorite place to climb outdoors: While the Gunks is my home crag and I have spent considerable time there, the Red River Gorge in Kentucky has had some of the greatest single pitch sport and trad climbing that I have climbed so far.
- If I were in a talent show, I would: sing and dance very poorly.
- My desired superpower: teleportation - to save on air travel around the world.
- My mother always says: “Have fun, Be safe and wear your helmet!”
- Best quality: My Beard
- Pets and their names: I have a Yellow Labrador named STELLAAAAA!
Justin – Ninja Fitness Manager
9 Things to Know About Justin
- I’m driven by: Overcoming obstacles in life and helping others do the same!
- My favorite food is: Chocolate Stick from Sugar Bun
- My favorite book is: The Digging-est Dog (yes, a kids book. It's my favorite)
- I started rock climbing because: A Ninja friend of mine invited me to Island Rock to climb one day. I loved it!
- I like rock climbing because: You can constantly solve different problems, strengthen your mind and your body, and it's a great way to hang out with friends.
- I like to work at Island Rock because: I get to make a difference in people's lives by showing them the amazing things that I've been exposed to and teach people skills that allow them to feel stronger!
- If I were in a talent show, I would: Sing and play guitar.
- My favorite animal: Cheetah.
- Some of my hobbies include: Ninja training, parkour, writing and playing music, building obstacles, and climbing.
Marissa – Marketing Manager
9 Things to Know About Marissa
- My favorite food is: Jalapeno poppers (cheddar cheese only)
- My favorite book is: The Chocolate Wedding, it’s one of those children’s books that my family still quotes after 20 years.
- I got my degree from: I have my Bachelor’s degree from Western New England University where I dual-majored in Arts & Entertainment Management and Marketing.
- How did you start rock climbing? I put my hands on the start hold and the rest is history…..
- Why do you like rock climbing? I enjoy puzzles and rock climbing is like a full body puzzle.
- What brought you to Island Rock? My little blue SUV
- My mother always says? “Only boring people get bored”
- Favorite word? “Wicked”
- My future pet: Bernese Mountain Dog named Captain Porkchop