2014 ExCom Candidates
Monday, December 16, 2013
Posted by: Mark Alpert
Below are biographies of Candidates for the 2014 Executive Committee. In order to vote you must attend the
Annual Meeting on January 11, 2014.
is a lifelong bicycling advocate and enthusiast as part of deeper commitment to
healthy and sustainable living. He brings years of experience to working
with public and non-profit organizations and welcomes the opportunity to give
back to Potomac Padalers for the joys it has given to him as a member since
arriving to Washington, DC in 2004.
Matt holds a PhD in urban and regional planning. He has
applied his craft in many areas of public concern, including a stint with the
National Fish and Wildlife Foundation from 2004 to 2010 and his current
position as senior evaluation officer for the Institute of Museum and Library
Services. While on faculty at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh from
1998 to 2003, Matt received several research grants funded by the U.S.
Department of Transportation for studying the effectiveness of educational
strategies involving bicycling health and safety. During that time, he also
served as vice chair of the Bicycle Federation of Wisconsin where he led the
creation of the organization's first long-range strategic plan.
regularly participates in PP club rides, including proud camaraderie with the
Downtown Breakaway crew and all B and BB riders. He has three bicycles in
DC -- his trusty Gunnar Hot Dog, beloved Specialized Roubaix and the
everlasting Rans V-Rex. He still has not ridden naked or in tweed.
As chair-elect, he is committed to facilitating a highly
participatory, long-range compressive, strategic plan for Potomac Pedalers in
repositioning the Club for enriching current and future generation of area
riders. Stay tuned for more details!
Member-At-Large - 2 positions available - 3 candidates running
Eric Lengel: Retired Teacher, Never
One measure of a good cyclist is the degree to
whichone gives back to the community. I'm an avid cyclist and longtime
member of PPTC since the 1980's and have led dozens of rides in the area. I
appreciate the importance of increasing accessibility to the sport, such as
helping people with disabilities who want to experience the joy of cycling but
need support. I am currently working with atandem group that includes
blind cyclists - wonderful people who are often better cyclists then their
sighted partners. I have also been involved in the organizational end of
cycling and have run "Bike Rodeos" in northern Virginia, one of which
was sponsored by PPTC. As a teacher, I've taught the importance of bike
safety to hundreds of children over the years. I would enjoy the
opportunity to contribute more of my time to PPTC!
I first began biking as a kid, biking all over the neighborhood
with my best friend. Then in college, I used my bicycle to get from one
end of the large campus to the other. But, when I got my first job, moved
to D.C., and got my first really nice bike – a Trek touring bike that felt like
it was part of me – I began biking on a whole new level. I first took my
new bike on the area trails, and then around 1980, decided I would try
commuting from Alexandria into D.C. on my bicycle. Even though the only
place for me to shower was in a janitor’s locker room at the agency where I
worked, I did it. Sometime around this period I first joined Potomac
Pedalers, and in celebration of my 30th birthday, I did a century
ride with the club.
After my two sons were born, I took a leave of absence from bike
commuting and serious biking and mostly rode with my sons. When my
younger son graduated from high school, I bought my next really nice bicycle,
and started riding again – soon commuting again by bicycle – this time with
access to a really nice locker room. I also started riding a lot on
weekends with Potomac Pedalers and became a life-time member. Having lost
my husband to leukemia, being able to bike with others through the club has
been important to me. The past two
years, I have volunteered during the Backroads Century, first as a ride leader
and then as part of the food and supply team and as a ride leader. I am also a life-time member of the
Washington Area Bicycle Association. The bottom line is that I love
biking. If I didn’t need to work for a living, I would bike all
day. I work as one of the too many attorneys in D.C., practicing labor
and employment law.
As a member at large of Potomac Pedalers, I would be interested
in working on promoting bicycle safety. Commuting by bicycle pretty much
daily, I see a lot of need for improvement of bicycle safety - both on the part
of bikers and drivers. I would also be interested in working on promoting
membership in the club.
Payne feels that when it comes to bicycle riding she has a bit of a split
personality. Half the time she can be found riding the Fairfax County Connector
Trail in Fairfax, VA on her Specialized Hardrock Sport Disc 26 mountain bike.
The other half of the time she is tooling around on her Cannondale Synapse
Carbon 5 105 road bike with her Potomac Pedaler friends out of Wakefield Park
(WKP) Annandale Training Works rides. She said that she and a small group of
those riders ride year-round; bike lights and under-clothing galore. The group,
she says, cheats Old Man Winter and Old Man Time with a one-two punch and have
a blast doing it.
of her fondest memories as a young girl was riding her bike to school each day.
Some of the winters were particularly harsh in New Jersey, but it never
deterred her from those moments of freedom from the house and the realization
that you can go places on a bike, many places.
As one of four children, she shared a Gitane 10-speed with her other
siblings; and that was precious little time. Gitane, a French manufacturer of
bicycles based in Machecoul, France, means "gypsy woman.” Ah, she thought, this
was all starting to piece together well: freedom, long bike rides, and a free
spirit equaled adventure.
has volunteered for the past several years at the Fairview Church rest stop in
the Back Roads Century. She admits that the home-baked sweets that the church
ladies donate are one of the selling points to serving at that rest stop. She
consistently learns best practices and other tricks of the trade from the
riders, such as component performance, cycling shoes, climbing techniques, and
new routes to try.
Pedalers is a very encouraging organization for riders of all levels. Some of
Susan’s friendships have gone well beyond riding bikes into triathlon training,
having Chinese soup after a winter’s ride, and even, more recently, being
invited to take dips in a friend’s brand new Jacuzzi. Membership has its
privileges, and being a Potomac Pedaler is no exception, it just means that it
goes well beyond the trail.