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Meet SheJumps Board Members: Q&A with Kristina Ciari

Updated: May 11, 2020

Welcome to the SheJumps Board of Directors: Kristina Ciari. We’re excited to have you and learn more about you.

Photo by Mitch PIttman

Q: Tell us a little about yourself.

A: I’m a skier, climber, runner, biker, and tutu enthusiast. My passion for the outdoors began at age 3 in Bozeman, Montana, where I grew up skiing and camping. I moved to Seattle to attend the UW, graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Marketing in 2006, and fell in love with the lush greenery and endless outdoor pursuits available in the Pacific Northwest. I never left.

As a backcountry skier and proud Turns All Year participant (102 months in a row), you can often find me skiing uphill on the side of a mountain somewhere, generally in a tutu. In my day job I work as the Communications & Membership Director at The Mountaineers, a Seattle-based volunteer-led nonprofit teaching outdoor skills and facilitating memorable outdoor experiences for all. I’m so grateful to the outdoor community for continually inspiring me to try bigger and better adventures - to Jump In, Jump Up, and Jump Out!

Q: Why SheJumps?

A: SheJumps is an incredible community of women and girls. Our programs teach confidence, trust, communication, grit, and resilience. Every time I attend a program, talk to a participant, or read one of our blogs I find inspiration and motivation to go over my own outdoor dreams.

Q: What’s your involvement been with SheJumps before joining the board?

A: I was introduced to SheJumps in 2014 through a film screening of Pretty FacesI at The Mountaineers. The energy of the event was unparalleled, and I was surprised to hit it off immediately with so many women. After that, I attended every event I could because I loved the supportive energy of this community. I learned how to mountain bike with SheJumps, instructed at Get The Girls Out ski days, and supported the launch of the first Wild Skills event. I joined the board two years ago, and am excited to be involved with shaping the future of this wonderful nonprofit.

Q: What goal of the SheJumps 5 year Strategic Plan is the most important to you?

A: I wasn’t involved, but I think the strategic plan was put together very thoughtfully, and each piece of the plan is dependent on the success of the others. I’m most excited to see SheJumps move the needle when it comes to being a leading resource of free and low-cost access to outdoor education for people of all backgrounds. Everyone should feel like they belong in the outdoors, and I’ve seen how invested the leadership is in JEDI (Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion) work. The outdoors is not a place that has been welcoming to everyone, particularly people of color, and while we have a long way to go, I’m excited to see SheJumps investing in JEDI programming directly and supporting partnerships that offer inclusive opportunities as well.

Q: What do you hope to get out of joining the SheJumps Board of Directors?

A: I hope to be able to give back to a community that has given so much to me. As a nonprofit employee I see first hand the positive impact involved board members can have, and I hope to pay that forward to SheJumps.

Q: What is your vision for SheJumps?

A: As the incoming Board Chair, my hope is to use the next two years to help SheJumps ‘Level Up’, or, in SJ speak: Jump Up! While SheJumps benefits from national brand awareness, thanks in part to the memorable Girafficorn logo designed by SheJumps’ cofounder Lynsey Dyer, we’re still a very small organization. We have three employees and 90 volunteers who make hundreds of events happen each year for thousands of participants. In the next two years I’d like to see us grow our staff so we can better support the growing coalition of SheJumps ambassadors and volunteers. We’re also looking to Level Up when it comes to the board, bringing on more members to support the growth. In two years I’d love to see us double our staff, increase our programming, and grow our fundraising capabilities so we can invest even more in our free and low-cost outdoor education for everyone.

Now, it’s time for the lightning round:

Q: Outdoor activity of choice (pick one, two if you must)?

A: Backcountry skiing

Q: What outdoor female inspires you and why?

A: The woman/girl I just met who tried something new in the outdoors!

Q: Who is your favorite female adventure partner and what traits does that person bring to your outings?

A: My ski-wife Theresa Sippel. We’ve been in a skilationship for 8+ years and our skiing styles and tolerance for risk is nearly identical. It’s like we read each other’s mind in the backcountry, which has led to many successful (and not so successful) adventures in the mountains. She’s always planning a new adventure and she inspires me to go bigger and try new things I might not otherwise consider.

Q: What’s your favorite product to have with you outdoors?

A: A down skirt. You should get one and here's why.

Q: What is your favorite trail snack?

A: I like routine, and a few years ago I bought a huge pack of strawberry shot blocs. So, until those run out those are my favorite!

Follow Kristina's adventures on Instagram at @activelifekc.

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