It's a team effort

Catherine Girves, Yay Bikes! Executive Director

Catherine Girves, Yay Bikes! Executive Director

'From the Saddle' is a monthly note from our Executive Director. 

I'm in too many pictures. Yay Bikes! is a world-class team of staff and volunteers and members and sponsors and partners and more, but it's my mug that too often ends up published. I do attend many, many meetings, rides and events—it's my job, after all, as well as my super power (I'm really really good at meetings, in particular)—and I'm pretty shameless with the selfie (NO I do not own a stick!). But do not let that confuse you: Yay Bikes! is a glorious peacock, of which I am but one feather.   

This month, as we've reviewed the outcomes of our Ride Buddy pilot program and read about what makes a good team a la Google (spoiler alert: it's being kind to one another), I've been reflecting on the role of team at Yay Bikes!. Of course kindness and meaningful relationships are fundamental to who we are as an organization, but specifically who are the people I lean on in this work? And what about them helps makes Yay Bikes! among the very most innovative bicycle advocacy organizations in the country? Luckily, bike rides create ample head space for such considerations.

As with all who win the lottery of life, I've got far too many people to love on than there is space to do it. But here are a few top-of-mind shout outs:

  • To Meredith Joy, our wicked smart writer and program designer and founder
  • To Kathleen Watkins, who makes all the [bikes] run on time
  • To Steve Puhl, our dancing queen in the bike corral
  • To Tiffany Dixon, who has helped us (finally!) relay our untold stories
  • To Shyra Allen, who will usher Year of Yay! to even greater heights
  • To Emily Monnig, who gets what a non-profit is and how to lead it like a boss
  • To Brian Laliberte, our in-house attorney and schmooze meister
  • To Joe Powell, who builds spread sheets that make me swoon
  • To Rahel Babb, who can herd a group of cats or volunteers like nobody's business
  • To Ray George, a marketing genius and work horse we could not live without
  • To Ken Cohen, who has been there from the beginning through all our ups & downs
  • To Duane McCoy, who has a mind that identifies and cleans up bottle necks
  • To Bill Ferriot, who protects our brand like a pro
  • To Abby Rhodebeck, who steps up where needed and get shit done
  • To the entire team of people who submitted to the rigorous 2-day How We Roll ride leader training and elegantly lead those rides (Art Kadlec, Rahel Babb, Steve Puhl, Mitzy Noisette, Ashley Kay Rifkouky, Rob Hendricks, Caleb Caldwell, Cherie Snyder, Ken Cohen, Denis de Vertuil, Marie Jarden, Alex Smith, Julie Walcoff, Matt Locke, Meredith Joy, Bambo Sanusi, Jonathon Youngman, Shibnum Blewett, Catherine Girves, Will Hughen, Kathleen Koechlin, Jason Poindexter, Shyra Allen, and Randy Dull)
  • To Kathleen Koechlin and the entire Ride of Silence planning team (David Curran, John Bannon, Shyra Allen, Jeff Gove, Abby Rhodebeck, Cory Hopwood, Pat Landusky, Rahel Meyers Babb, Joel Spokas, June Krayer, and Liza Rose Farrell)
  • To this year's team of Year of Yay ride leaders/sweeps/cruise directors/wrenches/photographers and all our ride organizers (Cassie Patterson, Darrel McGrath, Aliceanne Inskeep, Grant Sumner, Shiley Droney, Ken Cohen, John Bannon, Kathleen O'Dowd, Craig Clark, Jeff Gove, Bambo Sanusi, Rahel Meyers Babb, John Cresencia, Yolande Berger, Brian Meyers, Kathleen Koechlin, Bryan Barr, Jennier Evans Cowley, David Curran, Shyra Allen, Joel Spokas, Steve Puhl, Theo White, Tiffany Dixon, and Nik Olah)
  • To the bike corral champions Sarah Mellino, Steve Puhl, Mike Coakely, Duane McCoy, Andrew Hulvey, Deanne Kirillow, Jim Good, Alex Anderson, Katie Ervin, Mark Ervin, Nancy Neimuth, Craig Clark, Jason Poindexter, Kirsten Knodt, Mairead Reddy, Steve Shaffer, Maya Girves, Michael Webb, Phil Weckesser, Ra'Sheeda Donaldson, Adam Porr, Jeremy Slagel, Wiley Jackson, and the 200+ others who volunteer in the bike corral every year.
  • To Grand Poo Bah Ray George and the Bike the Cbus planning team (Bill Ferriot, Kathleen Watkins, Brian Jackson, Cherie Snyder, Brian Meyers, Jay Cheplowitz, Rob Hendricks, Gloria Hendricks, Craig Clark, Abby Rhodebeck, Nik Olah, Brian Laliberte, John Bannon, Cole Miller, Roger Beck, Kai Landis, John Waddy and Annie Ross Womack) and the 60 other people who make this happen every year.
  • To all our donors including the 900+ members and donors who keep the lights on, and this wonderful operation running.
  • To all our friends in high (and low) places who make sure we are invited into conversations about creating safe streets

I love you all. Thanks for being on our Yay Bikes! team. We are making magic happen and I am grateful.