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National Bike Summit news briefs

Published March 5, 2013
UPDATED: The League rebrands, LaHood speaks, Alliance issues awards and winning poster unveiled

League of American Bicyclists launches rebranding

WASHINGTON, DC (BRAIN) — Following the dissolution of a proposed merger of cycling’s most powerful advocacy groups, the League of American Bicyclists used the opening of its annual National Bike Summit to rebrand the organization and set a new course for the future.

“Yes, there’s a new logo, but there’s also a change in the League that goes much deeper than that,” LAB president Andy Clarke said in Monday night’s opening keynote. “We’ve taken a hard look at our programs, our products, our messages. We’ve looked closely in the mirror. We’ve asked what we really stand for and who we are.”

Though the League’s overall mission of “celebrating the bike as a high ground of freedom and discovery” remains unchanged, said Clarke, the organization will strive to be more inclusive going forward.

“We have to be the league of many, many people. Many places, many backgrounds. For too long perhaps we’ve empowered only the strong and fearless rider, but now we’re committed to everyone who wants to ride a bike.”

The rebranding will be accompanied by new-look American Bicyclist magazine to tell members’ stories, as well as an overhaul of the League’s website—one that “will allow you to actually find information,” Clarke joked.

With 750 registered attendees, the Summit continues Tuesday in Washington with the theme “Bicycling Means Business.”

LaHood makes likely final Summit appearance as DOT secretary

WASHINGTON, DC (BRAIN)—Making his fifth consecutive—and almost certainly final—National Bike Summit appearance as U.S. Department of Transportation secretary, Ray LaHood issued a call to action during Monday’s keynote, urging attendees to build on strides he has witnessed since taking the Cabinet position four and half years ago.

“We need to continue the momentum. We can’t let up,” said LaHood, who will cede his post in the Obama administration once a replacement is confirmed. “When you visit your congresspersons and your senators, you need to talk about your passion and why this is important. There are communities all over America getting into bike share programs, getting into walking and biking paths. You’ve all been leaders in that.”

He urged League members to continue working on the leading edge of advocacy to reduce cycling deaths and push for the construction of modern highways, streets and bridges to keep everyone safe, including cyclists. 

“You’ve been ahead of the politicians—not Earl (Blumenauer, U.S. representative from Oregon)—but the politicians,” noted LaHood.

“What a ride: four and half years with all of you,” he said. “I hope we can stay in touch and keep the momentum moving.”

League president Andy Clarke praised LaHood for his service to cycling and to the League in particular. “He even talks about bikes after we leave the room,” said Clarke.

Alliance for Biking & Walking honors advocates 

WASHINGTON, D.C. (BRAIN) — Following the opening of the Summit on Monday night, the Alliance for Biking & Walking presented its 2013 Advocacy Awards. 

Since 2009, the Alliance has solicited public nominations and recognized the individuals, organizations and business leaders who propel the organization’s “People Powered Movement.”

The 2013 winners were:

  • Advocacy Organization of the Year: Bike Walk Mississippi  
  • Advocate of the Year: Rebecca Serna, Atlanta Bicycle Coalition 
  • Business Advocate of the Year: Primal Wear 
  • Winning Campaign of the Year: Georgia Bikes! 
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: Barb Culp, Bicycle Alliance of Washington/Cascade Bicycle Club
  • Susie Stephens Joyful Enthusiasm Award: Renee Rivera, East Bay Bicycle Coalition
  • Innovation Award: Local Spokes

Saris unveils 5th-grade poster contest winner

WASHINGTON, DC (BRAIN)—Isabell Gehrt, a student from West Bend-Mallard Elementary School in Iowa, took the stage at the National Bike Summit on Monday night to be recognized as the winner of Saris’ annual Fifth Grade National Poster contest.

Gehrt’s art was selected from among 6,500 entries from 26 states tackling the theme of “Bicycling Takes Me Places.” Additional winners were also selected on the state level, with each student receiving a bike, light and helmet. The national winning school also receives bike parking for 20 bikes and The Hub, a web-based system that tracks and encourages active transportation.

Saris is one of nearly 30 sponsors of this year’s National Bike Summit. 

New York City Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan presents outgoing U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood with an honorary NYC street sign.
Topics associated with this article: Advocacy/Non-profits

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