After returning from a weekend trip from San Diego where she got fake tips put on her nails, her first adventure to Mission Cliffs with her friend left her scratching at the walls. She had such a great time that she went home and tore off the tips and begged her friend to take her climbing again -The rest is history…SHE WAS HOOKED! Donna has been with the gym for 9 years and has really enjoyed working with the community and assisting the diverse clients at Mission Cliffs.
Frank (he/him)Desk Staff
Frank started climbing when hip belays were the standard technique in belaying. Frank was one of the original members of the gym, and has long been a staple behind the front desk.
Emily (she/her)Desk Staff
Emily first went to Mission Cliffs for a friend’s birthday party while she was growing up in the city. She played other sports as a child, but when she went to college she made some friends who started to take her climbing. While Mission Cliffs is number one in her heart she fondly remembers going to Casa Boulders in Santiago when she used to live there. Even though she has been climbing on and off, she still considers herself a baby climber, so she tries to encourage and assist new climbers.
Patrick (he/him)Desk Staff
Patrick grew up in the sunny/smoggy City of Angels and moved to the unpredictable foggy cold weather of SF recently. He rekindled his love of climbing a few years ago after a long hiatus playing other sports like volleyball and softball. When he is not chuffin on boulders and 5.11s he is probably tending to his 50+ plants. If you have a plant question he probably has your plant answer. Climbing beta 10% Plant beta 90%.
Dan (he/him)Desk Staff
Dan has been a staple at Mission Cliffs since 2015. You’ve probably taken a lead class with him, and maybe, if you’re lucky, had a conversation about his Transformers collectibles.
Katya (she/her)Desk Staff
Coming from faraway Estonia, Katya had never heard of climbing until moving to San Francisco, however once her friends took her bouldering she knew she had discovered a new passion! When not at the gym Katya’s time is taken up by her product design classes.
Austin (he/him/they/them)Desk Staff
Meet Austin. This chaotic urban gremlin hails from the kingdom of suburbia in the East Bay. He started climbing at the UCLA rockwall in 2015, and worked there as a routesetter, safety staff, and questionable music DJ before moving back to the bay. You can easily spot him wandering around the gym with his emotional support lightsaber(s), preaching the gospel of crimp and tip slicing love, or pounding back an absurd amount of caffeine (300 mg on a good day? Maybe?). Anyway, aside from that, he likes to make replica lightsabers, other assorted sci fi props, and generate highly suspect design projects (light up dual texture volumes? flamethrower napoleonic bell hoop skirts anyone?). Inquire about the latter topics at your own risk.
Nina (she/her)Desk Staff
Nina first discovered climbing by Instagram-stalking her crush — “Hey that looks cool,” she thought, scrolling past his pictures of bright colored holds. With her basketball days behind her, she decided it was time to move on from the court to the big walls (also, maaaaaybe get her crush’s attention).
Little did she know that climbing would become a big part of her life some six years later. When Nina isn’t manning the Mission Cliffs front desk or sharing smol beta with her fellow shorties, she’s likely at some other Touchstone gym testing the limits of her ape index. Outside of climbing, Nina is studying to be a nurse and moonlights as a wannabe DJ in her bedroom. Oh, and that guy she had a crush on? He’s now her designated forever belayer.
Harrison got into climbing when his best friend Justin (Manager at Cliffs Of Id) took him to Bishop. Being a former boy scout and avid backpacker, he fell in love with the sport. It combined his love of the outdoors with the pragmatic problem solving side of his brain and the rest is history. You’ll find Harrison behind the desk talking it up about the latest problem in the bouldering area, offering shoe advice for “climbing in comfort” and explaining why the Skaven are definitely not real.