Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Nominees for the Board

The Board of Directors of the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia present the following slate of nominees for the board to be voted on by the membership at the annual meeting on May 2, 2010.

Tanya Seaman

As an advocate of non-automobile travel, I have become ever more drawn to using my bicycle for the vast majority of my trips. Thus I have become increasingly aware of the issues bicyclists face, and applaud the work of the Coalition to work with the City to bring about a number of recent changes. It is exciting to see more “mainstream” cyclists commuting to work on a daily basis as a result of the physical and cultural changes that the city has experienced.

Since receiving my master’s degree in city planning, I have worked exclusively in nonprofit organizations while volunteering in my neighborhood associations. These experiences have taught me not only how to manage projects and organizations with small budgets, but also about the partnership-building aspect of nonprofits that is required for them to be successful. The majority of my nonprofit experience has been in building and managing PhillyCarShare, which I helped to create.

Heidi Siegel (Philadelphia)

My appreciation for the Bicycle Coalition began with the Bike Philly ride a few years ago. I think it is events like this that can be tipping points for organizations. Once an event like this occurs, many things can change: awareness increases, volunteer support improves, fundraising becomes slightly easier and advocacy work gains more public attention. I’m happy to have seen all of these areas positively impacted for the Bicycle Coalition.

I ride for exercise. I also ride to work. I do this because I too believe that cycling is a healthy, low-cost and environmentally-friendly form of transportation and recreation. As a member of the Board, I would be able to contribute my knowledge of Human Resources, Communication, Marketing and Public Relations, as well as supporting Education, Advocacy and Events needs.

Jim Meyer (Montgomery County)

My interest in serving on the Coalition’s Board stems from my life-long interest in cycling. I have long been a member of and a supporter of the Coalition as well as the Bicycling Club of Philadelphia.

I have commuted from West Mount Airy and now Lafayette Hill throughout my 40 year professional career. I regularly participate in recreational rides, various charity bike rides including the ACS Bike-A-Thon as well as the MS Ride. For three years, I rode in the Pan Mass Challenge. In recent years I have toured in Israel, Oregon and Yellowstone. I have organized our firm’s team to participate in local charity rides and co-chaired the Philadelphia Bar Association’s bike team. I served on the organizing committee of the ACS Bike-A-Thon.

Russell Meddin (Philadelphia)

I currently Chair the Philadelphia County Committee of the Bicycle Coalition and participate as an animated volunteer at most every Bicycle Coalition event. I founded Bike Share Philadelphia calling for the creation of Public Use Bicycling for the City of Philadelphia. This organization was one of the catalysts that sparked the renewed interest in bicycling as daily transportation which brought increased interest and awareness of the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia.

For four years, I have presided on the governing Council (the “Board”) of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, a multi-million dollar nonprofit organization with over 100 full-time employees. I currently sit on The Reading Terminal Preservation Trust Fund Board as Vice President and on the Lower Schuylkill River Users Association Board. I've presided on the Mural Arts Advocates Board of the Mural Arts Program of Philadelphia and the Logan Square Neighborhood Association Board.

Chris Kingsley (Philadelphia)

I have been extremely impressed with the Coalition’s work the last several years and would be pleased if I could contribute to your efforts in fundraising and finance. I have participated in the Complete the Schuylkill River Trail campaign as part of Friends of Ivy Ridge Trail, been involved in several community associations in the city’s northwest, and as a former program administrator at University City District I had the great fun of helping submit the application to launch the Bicycle Coalition’s Bicycle Ambassadors program.

This would be my first position on the board of a nonprofit organization. I will finish my Masters in Government Administration at the Fels Institute this May.

Brian Hackford (Philadelphia)

As the owner of Keswick Cycle, my livelyhood, passion and happiness are intertwined. My livelihood and quality of life is also intertwined with bicycle advocacy. Without supporting organization like the BCGP with my time and financial resources then cyclists and the laws that protect them are in jeopardy. The BCGP is an organization that combines all the things that motivate me and drive me in life. I have been proud to take the lead in organizing a dozen bike shops to provide mechanical support at Bike Philly and for the Red Bowl party.

Keswick Cycle has garnered many industry accolades, including twice-voted the coveted "Best of Philly" for best bike shop by Philadelphia Magazine and making Bicycle Retailer Magazine’s Top 100 Bicycle Retailers list for the last four years. Keswick has also won The Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce's Retailer of the Year Award and was recently featured in a January Issue of The Philadelphia Business Journal. Brian recently won the Philadelphia Business Journal’s 40 under 40 award.

Sheryl Bullitt (Montgomery County)

I ride for the many of the same reasons stated in the Coalition's mission statement, that cycling is "…a healthy, low- cost and environmentally friendly form of transportation and recreation." Not to mention the pure joy of experiencing being close to nature while cycling along a country or even suburban road. I began riding with various clubs, including the Bicycle Club of Philadelphia, approximately 8 years ago, and began cycling to work approximately 6 years ago.

For the past 8 years I have worked in development, learning to identify, cultivate, solicit and steward donors to various non profit organizations in Philadelphia, and would bring these skills to the Coalition.

Rick Bluhm (Philadelphia)

I have enjoyed recreational bike riding continuously since childhood. I discovered a new passion for biking when I recently lived in Chicago for a year. I have been in Philadelphia now for about two and a half years, and a primary reason for me to accept a job and relocate here was its accessibility by bike.

In addition to regular biking along the Schuylkill in the summer, I occasionally commute and run errands by bike and do not own a car. I participated in Bike Philly last year and absolutely loved it. My recent work as

Director of Experience Design at The Franklin Institute on two new exhibits, Changing Earth and Electricity, has helped to reinforce my dedication to keep a low carbon footprint. I was thrilled to see the Spruce/Pine bike lanes finally become a reality (particularly because the westbound one is steps from my front door!)

Rick is Director of Experience Design at the Franklin Institute, a founding board member of the Philadelphia Liberty Tennis Association and is participating in Leadership Philadelphia.

Perry Benson (Philadelphia)

I have been involved in the Bicycle Coalition since the days of Sue McNamara and helped with early auctions, signed every petition and participated in almost every ride offered and talked up the Coalition with supportive and even non supportive cyclists. Serving on the Board is a way to promote cycling as a form of exercise, a way to get around without a car and to campaign for trails and bike lanes. My support of Bike Philly has been rewarding as it has brought some important donors to the event and helped set Philadelphia as a stage for all to see.

Leslye Abruyton (Montgomery County)

My passion for biking extends back to childhood and continues today as I bike for recreation and exercise. I also have a firm commitment to the idea that biking is a valuable tool in creating a better community through its ability to promote a healthy lifestyle and contribute to the environmental well being of the region.

There are many professional skills and experiences that I feel would contribute to my success as a board member. As a lifelong professional educator and administrator with a doctoral degree in educational administration I have a great deal of experience in leading an organization and the dynamics of board participation. I am well versed in all aspects of using education to promote objectives, management skills to fulfill organizational goals, and possess a multitude of tools helpful to not-for-profit organizations such as strategic planning, budgeting, grant writing, human resources, law, transportation of students, construction, marketing, and public relations. Throughout my career I have used my oral and written communication skills to present ideas and convey information.

Over the years I have volunteered my time and services to many not-for-profit organizations, lobbied for causes, and fund raised. I am currently volunteering my time to serve as a board member and on committees for the Anti Defamation League and the Beth David Synagogue. For those organizations I serve on committees such as budgeting and fund raising.

Nominated for Reelection

Tim Ifill (Philadelphia)

Tim currently serves as Treasurer of the Bicycle Coalition.

Claudia Crane (Philadelphia)

Claudia has served on the board for six years and was the former executive director of Neighborhood Bike Works.