Who We Are

 Scott Dimetrosky, Founder

Mr. Scott Dimetrosky founded the International Mountain Explorers Connection (originally called the Himalayan Explorers Club) in 1996 after completing a six-month traverse of the entire Himalayan range, through Pakistan, India, and Nepal. Disturbed by the negative environmental and cultural impacts of tourism that he witnessed on this trip, Scott created IMEC, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, to minimize the deleterious effects of tourism on the fragile mountain environments and cultures. IMEC established a number of initiatives, including a homestay program, volunteer handbook, teacher placement program, and the porter clothing bank, as ways to connect tourists more closely with the region and give back to the mountain cultures that provide so much to the tourists that visit. Currently, Mr. Dimetrosky designs and evaluates energy efficiency programs in the U.S. and stays connected to Nepal and Tanzania through his work on the IMEC Board of Directors.

Jack Zuzack, Clothing Coordinator and Board Member

Jack has a love for mountaineering and travel.  After several climbing trips to Nepal and South America, he saw first-hand the needs of the people living and working in these remote mountainous regions of the world. He noticed, in particular, how warm and generous these people are despite their difficult lives. Jack lives in Boulder, Colorado and joined IMEC’s volunteer staff in 2005. He is currently a board member and helps with clothing donations and transport of the gear to Tanzania and Nepal.

Mike Deeds, Board Member and Office Volunteer

Mike has done volunteer work with IMEC since the late 1990’s and has helped support both the Nepal and Tanzania offices.  He loves foreign travel and has greatly enjoyed visiting and learning about mountain cultures through IMEC.  He is an engineer living in Boulder, Colorado.

Andy Crisconi, Board Member

After his 1985 graduation from college in Ohio, Andy set out on a year-long solo backpacking journey across the US. These travels eventually landed him in Aspen, Colorado where, in 1988, Andy joined friend and soon to be business partner Mark Van Alstine on his first exploratory trips into the Karakoram Range of Northern Pakistan and the Himalayas of Nepal. For the past 27 years, Andy has been owner/director of One World Trekking and creates, organizes and guides worldwide trekking, climbing, mountain biking and cultural adventure travel tours. Andy calls Aspen and the Rockies home, where his love for the mountains is never ending.

Anna Oursler, Board Member

Anna has over seven years of experience working on the development and installation of small scale renewable energy technologies in East Africa.  Anna spent two years working as a research analysis for Global Footprint Network, using the Ecological Footprint to evaluate human development projects in Africa.  Anna has worked to develop waste-to-energy technologies in Nairobi, Kenya and to install photovoltaics, biogas and energy efficient cook stoves in Tanzania.  Anna is a post-graduate student at Columbia University’s School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP). Anna volunteered with KPAP through Visions In Action from 2005-2008.  She joined IMEC’s Board in 2009. In her spare time, Anna enjoys outdoor activities such as mountain climbing and camping.

Kerry McCaig and Robert Forrest, Board Members  

Kerry became acquainted with IMEC in 2009 after collecting 75+ boxes of gear to send to porters in Tanzania.  She and her husband Robert spearheaded a major collection of kit that was sent to KPAP via container in 2011. Kerry is an educator in her professional life and has served as a coach at the collegiate level and as a higher education administrator and professor.  Robert is an economist as well as data cruncher for all of KPAP’s research.  They reside in Parker, CO.  They are both avid mountain climbers and have trekked in Colorado, Alaska, Scotland, Ecuador and Bolivia. The 2nd time for Kerry, they both climbed Kilimanjaro in January 2017.

Harry McLaren, IT/Website Support

Having become acquainted with KPAP when he was just 16 years old and living in Moshi Tanzania, Harry later offered his emerging website development skills and has been supporting KPAP over the last 10 years. As a Cybersecurity Consultant, Harry works alongside some of the largest companies in the UK and, in his personal time, a number of charities and NGOs across Scotland. Harry volunteers his services as IT/Website Support, develops and hosts the IMEC and KPAP websites, and provides any additional ad-hoc advice required.

Karen Valenti, Project Manager Kilimanjaro

Since her teen years Karen has always wanted to live in Africa. Her desire persisted after serving with the Peace Corps in 1992-1994 as a physical therapist on the island of Antigua. Karen’s dream finally came true after she received her Masters degree in Nonprofit Management and volunteered in Moshi, Tanzania with Visions in Action in 2002-2003. Karen has been with the Kilimanjaro Porters Assistance Project since 2004. She acts as Project Manager helping to guide and facilitate the development of the nonprofit organization and its Tanzanian porter staff. Karen is surprised that her calling is to help porters and enjoys her simpler lifestyle in Tanzania.