Business SealsMeet the Xero Shoes Team

If you email or call us, see us at a race or a trade show, come to Broomfield (in between Boulder and Denver) and stop by the office or join us for a run, here’s who you’ll meet.

Lena Phoenix and Steven Sashen from Xero Shoes Barefoot SandalsSteven Sashen, CEO and Lena Phoenix, COO

Steven and Lena are husband and wife (I’m sure you can guess which is which) and life-long entrepreneurs.

Steven is the visionary and marketer for Xero Shoes. He is a Masters All-American sprinter (one of the fastest men over the age of 50 in the US) and former All-American gymnast. He was also a professional stand-up comic, cognitive psychology researcher, and taught Tai Chi and Zen Archery. Steven is also the creator of Scriptware, the industry-standard word processor for film and TV writers.

Lena is an avid hiker. In her previous life she created and sold a home mortgage company, and has managed the back-end of numerous companies. She’s the glue that keeps Xero Shoes from busting at the proverbial seams as it grows, taking care of all things logistical and numeric.

If you want a good laugh and some insight into Steven and Lena’s relationship, read the story of how Xero Shoes began.


Dennis Driscoll, Chief Development Officer for Xero Shoes Barefoot SandalsDennis Driscoll, Chief Product Officer

Dennis not only spearheads our new product development, but brings invaluable experience to Xero Shoes.

A 35-year industry veteran, Dennis co-founded Avia Athletic Footwear (which sold to Reebok) and, prior to joining Xero Shoes, was Global Design Director for Crocs. He started in footwear in 1978 with Osaga Athletic Footwear, was the Global Business Unit Director of Footwear for Wilson Sporting Goods, spent 7 years at Converse in senior product roles, and worked at Doc Martens Footwear as the Global Director of Product.

Says Dennis of Xero Shoes, “Xero Shoes are genuine, legitimate. We don’t need to create ways to differentiate our product… it actually IS different!”


Emilio Torres - Xero Shoes VP of Sales and MarketingEmilio Torres – VP of Sales and Marketing

Emilio brings 25+ years of Outdoor / Shoe industry experience to Xero Shoes. He was an original employee at Crocs Shoes and was promoted to Director of Sales Operations during their tremendous growth period of 2004 – 2009. Before Crocs, Emilio owned and operated Oilme Bikes & Boards, a successful Bicycle & Snowboard Shop in Niwot, Colorado. He likes to say, “I’ve been on both sides of the table, as a buyer and a seller of consumer goods.”

Most recently, Emilio founded “The Association of Slackline Professionals” and was the driving force behind the new and growing sport of Slacklining, hosting competitions around the world as a marketing effort to build awareness of a new product and fun activity.

Originally from Boston, Massachusetts he moved to Colorado in 1990 to pursue his goal of being more involved in an active, outdoor scene. He picked the right place.

Says Emilio, “Xero Shoes is an amazing new product line and team with so much potential. You couldn’t keep me away. Everyone is going to love the way these shoes make you feel.”


janice busey - xero shoes customer happiness managerJanice Busey – Customer Happiness Manager

Janice comes to Xero Shoes with a diverse background; from the military to elementary education, she has experience relating to a wide range of people. Janice summed it up to her dad when at 9 years old he asked the age-old question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Her answer? “I just want to be happy!” Now as the Xero Shoes Customer Happiness Manager she brings her positive attitude to helping our customers get the most out of their Xero Shoes experience.

Janice is an active person and loves the outdoors. She enjoys hiking, mountain biking, weight-lifting, snowboarding and snowshoeing with her husband and their two dogs. They love that they can do most of these activities in their Xero Shoes! “I slip-on my Z-Treks when going into the mountains, but love my Clouds for everyday wear,” says Janice. Her husband wears his Z-Treks everyday and has even developed an arch in his previously flat feet!


Andrew at Spartan RaceAndrew Gillette – Retail Account Manager

A native Coloradan, he attended Metropolitan State College of Denver, and has a background in sales and customer service across a variety of industries. He is an avid painter, loves to run, and enjoys participating in obstacle course races such as Tough Mudder and Spartan Race. He lives in the Denver area with his beautiful wife and daughter, as well as a shadowy cat and a hyperactive dog.

Pam Tuck at Xero ShoesPam Tuck – Special Projects Manager

Pam lives in northern Colorado with her family, and is a 2nd generation Colorado native. A keen traveler and yoga enthusiast, Pam loves to explore other cities, countries, and cultures. She loves that her Clouds and Ventures allow her to practice yoga in exotic locations without needing a mat.

Pam has over 20 years in Sales and Customer Service, over a variety of industries, and is a valuable addition to our Xero family.

jacob-ridingJacob Lee – Customer Happiness Specialist

What’s it like meeting Jacob? It’s like meeting a scientist’s description of the ideal human. Smart? Check. He’s studying mechanical engineering, writes a blog, and reads books for the story arc. Athletic? Check. He ran cross country and biked in high school, still loves riding any velodrome, trail, or mountain road, joneses for rock climbing, and likes snowboarding and backcountry skis. He does all of this with only a third of a lung. Artistic? Well, he played guitar once so we’ll count it.

Courtney from Xero ShoesCourtney Condy – Customer Happiness Specialist

Who is this mystery that is so helpful on the phone? Courtney is a star in the Customer Happiness department here at Xero Shoes. She’s a vegan, and her life revolves around running and her dog, a lab mix named Smokey. How much does she love running? She cried when she met ultra runner Scott Jurek for the first time.

Courtney is a Colorado resident by way of Bucknell University in Pennsylvania, and originally California. During college, she raced on the alpine ski team, and became an ordained minister at the Universal Life Church. What else makes Courtney exceptional? She’s fluent in Chinese and has previous experience in the outdoor industry, as well as significant adventure experience. John Cena may or may not be her hero.