We’re hiring for our new Executive Director!

Washington Bikes and Cascade Bicycle Club are looking to hire! We seek a bold, creative, experienced and visionary leader to serve as the next Executive Director. The next Executive Director will lead these dynamic, well-established and respected organizations by demonstrating  a passion for growing and expanding our influence and impact in pursuing Washington Bikes’ mission of ‘People Who Bike Make a Difference’ and Cascade’s mission of ‘Improving Lives Through Bicycling.’

The next Executive Director of WA Bikes and Cascade will have an opportunity to take the helm of a vibrant, growing and respected organization and build a lasting legacy for Washington state. The E.D. of both 501(c)4 Washington Bikes and 501(c)3 Cascade Bicycle Club will be the torchbearer; setting out immediately to build trust while creating a culture of “best practices” and embodying the values already set forth by the missions of the organizations. We are seeking the consummate manager of managers who is as comfortable in the budgeting process as they are working with key partners, political stakeholders and major donors.

The Washington Bikes & Cascade Bicycle Club Executive Director will have overall strategic and operational responsibility for fulfillment of WA Bikes’ 5-year strategic plan with a mission of being the statewide voice for people of all ages and abilities who ride bicycles for transportation, health, travel and recreation. WA Bikes works to elect, build relationships with, and hold accountable policymakers to improve the safety and accessibility of bicycling throughout Washington state thereby improving the health and prosperity of our communities. The Executive Director also oversees Cascade’s mission to improve lives through bicycling, teaching the joys of bicycling, advocating for safe places to ride and producing world-class rides.

Please review our Position Profile for more details. Annual salary is $110,000 – $150,000 based on experience and qualifications.

Cover letter and resumes should be submitted via email to Adam Forest (adam@theforestgroup.com). This announcement was originally posted on April 20, 2017. The position will remain open until filled. Applications reviewed on a frequent rolling basis.

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It’s filing week in Washington!

Candidates are officially declaring their intent to run for elected office, and Washington Bikes is gearing up for endorsement season.

2017 filing week is upon us and the deadline to file as a candidate for elected office is this Friday, May 19 (which is also F5 Bike Everywhere Day!). Here at Washington Bikes we’ve been busy getting ready for the 2017 electoral season. You might wonder, what does that really mean? Well, in a nutshell: writing endorsement questionnaires, assessing where a WA Bikes endorsement will be most meaningful, planning candidate forums and fundraising for the WA Bike PAC. (Save the date: WA Bike PAC will celebrate Seattle’s pedal power with an event at Optimism Brewing on Thursday, June 15!)

Washington Bikes is excited for all that lies ahead on the 2017 campaign trail; we hope you’ll join us in helping to elect leaders who share our vision for active, connected and safe communities.

Why Washington Bikes endorses

Washington Bikes endorses electoral candidates at all levels of government. Endorsement and support are given to candidates who commit to or have a record of making communities better for people on bikes — through growing local economies, improving health outcomes, or creating safer streets and roadways. Additionally, Washington Bikes makes endorsements of ballot measures which will benefit Washington communities through bolstering transportation choices, supporting outdoor recreation, and working to safely connect neighborhoods and cities.

Where Washington Bikes endorses

Washington Bikes has identified key regions for engagement in the 2017 electoral season. These regions include: Bellevue, King County, Port Angeles, Sammamish, Seattle metropolitan area, Shoreline, Spokane, Tacoma, Redmond and Vancouver.

Reasons for regional focus:

  • Our goal is to build an endorsement program that has strong accountability and follow-through built in, to both the candidate and Washington Bikes. Washington Bikes endorsement process is in its second year, and so it is beneficial to begin in communities where partners who advocate for bicycling already work. Washington Bikes endorsement program will continue to grow as we build statewide relationships and execute plans of engagement, while continuing to support and monitor endorsed candidates.
  • Races that fall outside of the regions of focus may also be considered.

Read on for details on Washington Bikes’ endorsement process.

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Governor Inslee finalizes the Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Council

Throughout the 2017 legislative session, Washington Bikes shared the importance of SB 5402. Now we’re celebrating the legislation’s enactment and the creation of the Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Council!

Gov. Inslee signs Substitute Senate Bill No. 5402, May 16, 2017. Relating to the Cooper Jones bicyclist safety advisory council. Primary Sponsor: Marko Liias

Gov. Inslee signs Substitute Senate Bill No. 5402, May 16, 2017. Relating to the Cooper Jones bicyclist safety advisory council. Primary Sponsor: Marko Liias

On Tuesday, May 16, Governor Inlsee signed SB 5402, creating the Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Council. David Jones (Cooper Jones father) was able to make the trip from Spokane for the bill signing. We missed Cooper’s mom, Martha Jones, who was unable to make the trip, but the Jones’ presence was strong and felt by all at the ceremony.

This year marks 20 years since the heart-wrenching loss of Cooper. While Washington Bikes looks forward to eliminating traffic deaths on Washington’s streets, the work of the Council will entail studying stories similar to Cooper’s, which are devastating and in some instances preventable. This day was full of emotions, both hope for a day when Washington’s streets are designed to keep all users safe, especially the most vulnerable and also sadness for the unnecessary loss of life experienced at a disproportionate rate for people on bikes.  

Washington Bikes is grateful to David and Martha Jones advocacy and support over the last couple of decades and to the members of the legislature who helped ensure passage of this bill. And with the creation of the Council, now our work really begins.

Washington Bikes’ statement on the passage of SB 5402:

On Tuesday, May 16, Governor Inlsee signed SB 5402, creating the Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Council. In Washington state, bicyclist fatalities and serious injuries make up 7.2 percent of all traffic fatalities and serious injuries. The risk is disproportionate for people who bike compared with other modes. SB 5402, sponsored by Senator Marko Liias and five other Senators, establishes the first interdisciplinary panel dedicated to examining causes of serious injury and death for people who bike and providing subsequent recommendations for prevention to the legislature. Through this Council, Washington Bikes looks forward to working with a diverse set of stakeholders to improve bicycle safety for all users.

Right: Cooper Jones' dad, David Jones, celebrates #SB5402 bill signing w/ our State Policy Director, Alex Alston & her daughter Sawyer.

Right: Cooper Jones’ dad, David Jones, celebrates #SB5402 bill signing w/ our State Policy Director, Alex Alston & her daughter Sawyer.

Washington Bikes is proud this bill saw broad bipartisan support in both the State House and Senate. Special thanks to House sponsor, Representative Shelley Kloba, and the additional House co-sponsors, as well as Representative Ed Orcutt, who added important amendments to secure its passage. Riding bikes for health, recreation or transportation should be accessible and safe throughout Washington state.

Stay tuned for updates as the Council meets for the first time in July. Sign up for the Washington Bikes e-news for updates on policy priorities or to stay on top of action alerts when it’s time to speak up in the legislature.

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Making transit work for bikes even more!

Washington state adds more bike capacity on buses with the passage of HB 1149.

Washington state adds more bike capacity on busses with the passage of HB 1149.

Gov. Inslee signs HB 1149 into law, adding more bike capacity on buses in Washington state.

Many of you are familiar with this scenario: You ride your bike to your nearest bus stop and discover that the racks are already full.

This unfortunate scenario was in part due to a state law, which said that most buses could only be equipped with racks long enough to accommodate only two bikes. Prior to a recent change in law, transit providers had to go through a lengthy process just to ensure three-bike racks were allowed. That is until last week when Governor Inslee signed HB 1149. Thanks to our friends at the Washington State Transit Association who led the charge to fix this law, bike racks on buses can now be up to a suitable four feet in length, allowing bike racks that can hold three bikes!

“Now, instead of nearly all transits in the state…filling out a bunch of paperwork annually, they can have the longer bike racks on current and future buses,”  said Justin Leighton, Executive Director at WSTA. “This is great for multi-modal connections.”

Washington Bikes was pleased to support this legislative effort which helps to ensure mass transit access to as many bicycle riders as possible.

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Let’s get Washington’s kids moving!

Gov. Inslee signs Substitute House Bill No. 1235, April 20, 2017. Relating to assessing physical education practices in public schools. Primary Sponsor: Marcus Riccelli

Gov. Inslee signs Substitute House Bill No. 1235, April 20, 2017. Relating to assessing physical education practices in public schools. Primary Sponsor: Marcus Riccelli

Last week Washington state took the first step towards ensuring all students have access to quality physical education with the enactment of HB 1235.

Thanks to the bipartisan leadership of Reps. Riccelli, Harris, and Stonier, the importance of getting Washington’s kids moving has been elevated. On April 20, Governor Jay Inslee signed HB 1235 into law; this bill was a 2017 Childhood Obesity Prevention Coalition (COPC) legislative priority. As a COPC member, Washington Bikes is excited that physical education assessments will now be uniform throughout the state.

Currently, one in five school-aged children is obese. PE classes taught in school are sometimes the only way for a child to get physical activity. Healthy kids have better learning outcomes in the classroom. This fact is also true for kids having access to safe and connected routes to school, allowing them to bike and walk to and from school. Washington Bikes advocates for safe and connected routes through the Safe Routes To School (SRTS) program. We are committed to ensuring the youngest in our communities have safe spaces to be active and increasing the likelihood that they develop healthy life habits at a young age.

HB 1235 is focused on getting an accurate picture of Washington state’s current physical education curricula in schools — the first step in understanding the quality and quantity of Washington’s PE programs. The bill establishes a reporting requirement so we can better know details such as: curricula, teacher credentials, length of time, class size, and class space. Currently, there is no uniform reporting requirement, which makes understanding student’s access to and experience with PE unclear. Having this data is significant because it will allow for addressing gaps in access and identifying future improvements to PE curricula.

Thanks to our COPC leads and partners for bringing the PE bill to fruition!

This bill comes just in time for Bike to School Month, when students across the state can track their biking minutes to earn cool prizes! Register your school for the statewide Bike to School Challenge with our affiliate organization, Cascade Bicycle Club.

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Press Release: Washington Bikes Bike Everywhere Challenge kicks off May 1

Media Contact: Diana Bryant
Communications & Marketing Specialist
(206) 939-4314 (office)
comms@wabikes.org

More than 15,000 expected to participate in the
annual trip tracking challenge

SEATTLE, Wash. April 26, 2017 –  Are you in? The Washington Bikes Bike Everywhere Challenge begins Monday, May 1 and runs through the end of the month. The Challenge is a fun, free online trip-tracking contest designed to encourage people to ride to work, school and everywhere else. The annual Challenge inspires thousands of people to start riding and encourages experienced riders to bike more. Riders can go solo or form a team of coworkers or friends and challenge each other to ride as much as possible throughout the month of May.

Learn more and sign up for the Washington Bikes Bike Everywhere Challenge at challenge.wabikes.org.
New this year:

With our improved leaderboard functions participants will be able to see how they stack up against others within their county, age range and level of riding experience.
Participants now earn points by encouraging others to ride. Winning individuals and teams will be selected based on a combination of points earned from miles ridden, days ridden and encouragement given.
To encourage new riders to join the Challenge we are awarding double points for anyone who has only ridden a few times in the last year.
The Washington Bikes Bike Everywhere Challenge is one of many fun bike challenges happening across the state throughout the month of May.

Find other Washington state bike challenges at wabikes.org/growing-bicycling/resources/bike-month-challenges-in-washington-state/.
Stats from the 2016 Challenge:

  • 15,741 participants
  • 1,730 teams
  • 338,886 bike trips logged
  • 1,563 new riders
  • 30 percent of Challenge riders identified as a woman
  • More than 700 organizations represented

Follow #BikeEverywhere on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for news and updates throughout the month.

# # #

About Washington Bikes
Washington Bikes grows bicycling all across the state of Washington every day. We advocate for bicyclists’ rights, endorse political candidates and hold officials accountable at every level of government, working with them to shape the policies that will make bicycling a safe, accessible form of transportation, travel and recreation. Through our efforts we increase funding for bicycle facilities; provide tools for local advocates to improve their communities; and promote the health, safety and economic benefits of bicycling. Our work and that of our many partner organizations means more biking all across Washington, the #1 Bicycle Friendly State in America (eight years in a row)! To learn more, visit WAbikes.org.

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Making Bikes Count: Washington creates interdisciplinary panel dedicated to the safety of people who bike

People who bike make up a disproportionate number of traffic fatalities and serious injuries when compared to people that travel by other means. While experts across fields, from law enforcement to transportation planning to public health, are dedicated to eliminating this disparity, these sectors need a better way to collaborate.

That’s why Washington Bikes is celebrating the creation of the Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Council.

Senate bill 5402 passed the legislature on April 17, and Gov. Inslee will soon sign this legislation into law, forming the first interdisciplinary panel dedicated to examining causes of serious injury and death of people who bike in Washington. This means bicyclist safety will be treated with the same diligence as pedestrian safety as well as impaired driving, both of which already have their own dedicated panels.

Experts and advocates representing more than 10 disciplines and stakeholder groups will convene quarterly to review, analyze and share data; identify patterns in bicyclist injury and death; and identify points at which the transportation system can be improved.

Facilitating these practices puts us on the path to eliminate disparities in traffic injury and death for people who bike, and ultimately, to achieve Target Zero objectives.

What’s more, investing in bicyclist safety at the state level spurs action among counties and municipalities. When the state leads, local advocates and agencies follow suit, using vetted, trusted and evidence-based recommendations to advance policies in their own communities.

Advocating for the safety of people who bike is a core tenant of all that we do at Washington Bikes. With the creation of the Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Council, we are elevating the safety of some of the most vulnerable road users in a comprehensive statewide manner.

Washington Bikes would like to express gratitude to the family of Cooper Jones, who after the loss of their son, worked tirelessly to lay the groundwork for bicyclist and pedestrian safety legislation in Washington state. Also, we’d like to give a huge thanks to Senator Liias and Representative Kloba, the prime sponsors of the companion bills this year. Their leadership and commitment to making Washington’s communities safer for people who bike is greatly valued.

To stay engaged on this and other important bike issues, sign up for WA Bikes E-News.

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Day 96 of the legislative session: An update on where things stand for people who bike

Safety improvements for Washington’s streets and roadways, connecting and protecting trails, and ensuring active transportation and recreation are supported through the state’s budgets.

Less than two weeks until Sine Die

It’s day 96 of the legislative session. Washington Bikes has been head down, working our priorities through the legislative process. Wednesday, April 12 was the cutoff for bills to make it out of their opposite chamber in order to continue on to the Governor’s desk for signature. And with that, the focus in Olympia has turned towards the budgeting process. The Republican-controlled Senate and the Democratic-controlled House have both released their initial versions of the Operating, Transportation and Capital budgets. The regular session will Sine Die (adjourn) on Sunday, April 23. Budget negotiations have yet to start, which means we are awaiting an announcement of the special session. The special session will be dedicated to passing the final budgets and addressing the McCleary mandate for K-12 education.

Legislation

Washington Bikes’ priority legislation — creating the Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Council — has almost made it through the legislative process. SB 5402 passed the full House last week and now awaits concurrence in the Senate before heading to the Governor’s desk. Huge thanks to our prime sponsors, Senator Liias (21st LD) and Representative Kloba (1st LD), for championing this legislation to help address improving street and road conditions by taking a dedicated look at crashes involving people on bikes.

Washington Bikes has been working with a coalition of organizations, construction professionals, medical professionals, law enforcement, and families who’ve lost loved ones to distracted driving collisions to update Washington’s outdated distracted driving laws. SB 5289 passed the full House this week — this bill too, needs concurrence in the Senate before heading to the Governor’s desk for signature. When the bill is enacted in 2019, holding a wireless device while driving will be a traffic infraction with penalties that will hopefully deter the current common usage of phones while driving. This distraction while driving correlates to disturbing trends in collisions and injury.

Budgets

Still a work in progress, but Washington Bikes is advocating for priorities that impact people who bike in all three budgets.

  • Transportation Budget — Safe Routes to School (SRTS) and bike/pedestrian grant funding levels are currently maintained in both the House and Senate versions of the budget.
  • Capital Budget — We are working to secure funds for maintenance, protection, and development of trails statewide. The Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program (WWRP) contains the majority of these trail projects through the recreational trails program.
  • Operating Budget — We are working along with Washington Trails Association to secure funding for an economic impact study. The study will take a deep dive looking at how hiking, biking, and walking positively impact Washington’s economy. In addition, the study will quantify the health benefits of these activities.

Stay tuned as regular session concludes and for an update on how Washington Bikes’ 2017 legislative priorities faired. Stay touch by signing up for Washington Bikes’ alerts!

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Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Council

SB 5402 and HB 1795 introduced in both the House and Senate target reversing the trend in fatalities and serious injuries of people on bikes throughout Washington’s transportation system.

Fatalities and serious injuries for people who bike make up 7.2% of all traffic fatalities and serious injuries in Washington state, yet only 0.9% of commute trips are made by those biking. In short, it’s riskier to bicycle than to drive a car, but why?

To answer this question, Washington Bikes has partnered with Sen. Liias and Rep. Kloba in efforts to better understand the causes of serious injuries and deaths in Washington state and find strategies improve safety for those biking on Washington’s streets and roads.

At its heart, SB 5402/HB 1795: establishes the Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Council to convene a panel of interdisciplinary professionals from law enforcement, multimodal transportation planners, public health representatives, municipalities, victim’s families, bicycle advocates and transportation researchers. The panel will meet quarterly to analyze bicyclist-involved collision data. This will be an opportunity to take a systemic look and gain a statewide understanding of what is taking place, where are the biggest weaknesses, and what solutions will curb the current, alarming trends. The council will submit an annual report to the legislature that includes recommendations for safety improvements.

Washington Bikes’ expects the recommendations of this panel to help inform and guide future policy and funding decisions made in Olympia and at the local level, leading to a reduction in deaths and serious injuries on Washington’s streets and roadways.

Cooper Jones

Cooper Jones

The legislation honors the heritage of The Cooper Jones Act of 1998 which set the foundation for bicycle safety legislation in Washington state. Named for 13-year-old Cooper Jones of Spokane, Wash., the Jones family worked relentlessly after the tragic loss of their son to strengthen safety laws for people who bike. Now, 20 years later, Washington still has a lot of work ahead to make streets and roads safe for people who bike. The Cooper Jones Bicyclist Safety Advisory Committee aims to honor the work of the Jones’ family while making much-needed transportation system safety improvements for those that bike.

SB 5402 was heard in the Senate Transportation Committee on Tuesday, Feb. 7. HB 1795 is scheduled for a hearing on Monday, Feb. 13 in the House Transportation Committee.

Let’s make Washington’s transportation system safe for ALL users. Keep in touch with us by signing up to Washington Bikes’ alerts to help us pass this important safety legislation.

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Cascade and Washington Bikes’ Chief Strategic Officer Barb Chamberlain accepts director role at WSDOT’s new Division of Active Transportation

barb-w-bike-2011-mediumThe Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) has named Barb Chamberlain Director of the newly created Division of Active Transportation. Barb served as the Executive Director of Washington Bikes 2012-2015, then became Chief Strategic Officer (CSO) when Washington Bikes and Cascade Bicycle Club merged to form the nation’s largest statewide bike nonprofit.

Barb helped lead the orchestration of a successful merger between Cascade and Washington Bikes. As Chief Strategic Officer, she was instrumental in the development of new 5-year strategic plans for both organizations. Under her leadership as CSO, Cascade began to increase activation and engagement statewide as well as lay the groundwork for becoming a resource hub across the state.

“Barb has been instrumental in expanding our impact and our partnerships across the state of Washington, and is recognized nationally as a leader,” said Charles Ruthford, Cascade board president. “She will be sorely missed at Cascade and Washington Bikes, but we are excited about her future and appreciate her continued dedication to active transportation.”

Cascade applauds WSDOT for establishing the Division of Active Transportation, ensuring that Washington state continues to be a leader in planning and building for the future of transportation for everyone. A focus on biking and walking is critical in achieving active, sustainable transportation and improved safety across the state, and Cascade looks forward to the positive impact of this new division.

“I’m proud of all that has been accomplished during my time at Cascade and Washington Bikes,” said Barb. “I wouldn’t consider leaving if it weren’t for this incredible opportunity to set the direction of a new division from its inception. I look forward to continued collaboration with biking, walking and trail groups all across the state as partners in the future.”

Barb’s last day at Washington Bikes and Cascade is February 24. Please join us in congratulating her on this new position!

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