Bike Summit 2009 Speaker Bios
The Bike Summit will feature leading Canadian and international thinkers, practitioners and decision-makers who are on the fast track to creating bikeable communities. We are pleased to announce these impressive speakers confirmed to speak on May 28th:
Eric Anderson is a bicycle and pedestrian professional with 10 years of experience in the field, spanning agency, advocacy and consulting roles. His first paid job in bicycling was throwing a paper route by bike from age 11-15. Doubtless aided by that formative experience, he went on to manage the bicycle parking project for the City of Chicago Bicycle Program, riding his bicycle to every neighborhood in the city, year-round, to identify locations for new bicycle racks. Since then Mr. Anderson has worked for several non-profits and consulting companies, including the Marin County Bicycle Coalition and Alta Planning + Design, and now serves as the Bicycle and Pedestrian Planner for City of Berkeley, CA. He is proud to serve on the Board of Directors for the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals (APBP), where he is leading a comprehensive update of the APBP Bicycle Parking Guidelines and partnering with other organizations to help release a Bicycle Boulevard Design Guide.
Joshua Benson is the Acting Director of Bicycle & Pedestrian Programs for the New York City Department of Transportation. He was the Bicycle Program Coordinator from 2006 to 2008 and was the Deputy Coordinator from 2000 to 2004. His current projects include New York City’s ambitious expansion of the on-street bicycle network, the creation of new “instant” public space in former roadway space and the priority school initiative to improve pedestrian safety in the vicinity of schools with a history of crashes. The 3-year 200-mile expansion of the bicycle network, which Mr. Benson has overseen since its launch in 2006, is the most aggressive and innovative such buildout in City history. Several new bicycle facility design treatments including on-street protected bicycle paths, have been piloted as part of this expansion. Mr. Benson is a graduate of New York University and holds a Masters degree in Urban Planning from Columbia University. He lives in Brooklyn, New York and is a daily bicycle commuter.
Ralph Buehler is an Assistant Professor in the Urban Affairs and Planning Program at Virginia Tech's Alexandria Center. Most of Dr. Buehler's transportation research has an international comparative perspective. He seeks to disentangle how international differences in travel behavior are shaped by public policies, spatial development patterns, and demographic and socioeconomic factors. The main goal is to determine what countries can learn from each other to improve the sustainability of their urban transportation systems. Over the last five years his research has compared bicycling in Canada, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, the U.K., and the U.S. Together with Dr. John Pucher, from Rutgers University, Dr. Buehler currently compares public transportation trends, policies, and economic efficiency in Germany and the U.S. Dr. Buehler's research has been funded by the German and U.S. Federal Ministries of Transport, the Brookings Institution, the University Transportation Research Center (UTRC), and the Alliance for Biking and Walking. His work has appeared in several peer reviewed journals including: Transport Policy; Transport Reviews; the Transportation Research Record; World Transport Policy and Practice; International Planning Studies; Plan Canada; the Journal of Physical Activity and Health; the Journal of the American Planning Association (book review), and as a chapter in the Handbook of Transportation Strategy, Policy, and Institutions. Dr. Buehler is a native of Germany and has gained research and work experience in his home country, the U.K., France, and the U.S. His dissertation "Transport Policies, Travel Behavior, and Sustainability: A Comparison of Germany and the U.S." was honored with the "Barclay Gibbs Jones Award for Best Dissertation in Planning 2008" by the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning.
Pauline Craig is a Transportation Planner in the Toronto City Planning Division. Her experience includes input on City policy development with ongoing projects such as the Toronto Walking Strategy, neighbourhood active transportation studies and Transportation Demand Management guidelines for new developments. In addition, she has designed and delivered city-wide bicycle parking policies and programs and has worked as project lead for a number of the City’s bicycle promotions initiatives.
Joshua Engel-Yan is a Senior Advisor in the Transportation Policy and Planning Unit at Metrolinx where he specializes in integrated land use and transportation planning. His main file is Mobility Hubs - rapid transit stations that can be easily accessed by many modes and that are great places as well as seamless transportation hubs. He has a B.A.Sc. in Systems Design Engineering from the University of Waterloo and a M.A.Sc. in Civil Engineering and Sustainable Urban Infrastructure from the University of Toronto. Before joining Metrolinx, Joshua worked as a transportation consultant with IBI Group on a wide variety of projects related to bicycle and pedestrian planning, parking management, transportation demand management, and transportation emissions modelling.
Hannah Evans is a Director with the Ontario Growth Secretariat, Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure. She is responsible for leading policy development and consultation on the Provincial Government's Places to Grow initiative - focused on creating more compact, liveable communities. Prior to joining the Secretariat in 2002, Hannah was based for 10 years in New York City and Prague where she worked for the Foundation for a Civil Society on sustainable development projects. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Commerce and Finance from the University of Toronto and a Master's degree in Environmental Studies from York University. In her spare time, she is a member of the advisory board of the Centre for City Ecology, the Huron Street Community Garden and is a year-round commuter cyclist.
Councillor Adrian Heaps was elected City Councillor for Ward 35, Scarborough-Southwest in November 2006 and was appointed the Chair of the Cycling Committee soon after. Since his appointment, Councillor Heaps has worked on many initiatives to promote cycling in Toronto including the extension of Bike Week to Bike Month and the streamlining of the bike lane approval process. In 2009, Councillor Heaps is playing an instrumental role in improving the infrastructure available to cyclists including bicycle parking, bike-share facilities, and an extended bike lane network. Councillor Heaps is an avid cyclist, and has toured around Europe and of course the city of Toronto on his bike.
Adolfo Hernandez has over 5 years of health and wellness work in Chicago’s diverse communities. He joined the Active Transportation Alliance in 2007 at its Community Liaison to the Latino Community. He was the lead organizer in Chicago’s first ever Sunday Parkways, a CicloVia style event that connected five predominantly Latino and African American communities. Mr. Hernandez is currently the Director of Advocacy, organizing and leading campaigns addressing transportation safety, accessibility and equity throughout the city and suburbs. Current projects include: maintaining and building community support for the expansion of Sunday Parkways programming in predominantly Latino and African America communities, program management for Active Living on the Block, a program designed to give residents in underserved communities tools for improving the safety of their streets and accessing improvement funds, as well as program management for Go Healthy, an individualized marketing campaign with the goal of changing sedentary motorized trips to more active forms of transportation including walking, bicycling and public transit. Mr. Hernandez also serves on Mayor Daley’s Pedestrian and Bicycle Advisory Councils, which work to improve conditions for bicyclists and pedestrians in the city of Chicago. He has been a regular bicycle commuter in Chicago for the last seven years during sunshine, rain, or snow.
Paul M. Hess is Associate Professor of Geography and Planning at the University of Toronto. His teaching and research focus is on pedestrian environments and design, planning for activity transportation modes, and streets as public space. Dr. Hess has done research on how built environments influence pedestrian activity for more than 15 years with his early work pioneering measures of pedestrian network connectivity and route-directness now in common use. A recent study with Professor Beth Moore Milroy examined instuitional barriers to improving street design for pedestrians. Current projects include a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada funded project exploring “walkability” in the inner suburbs and how residents without access to cars negotiate their neighbourhoods by walking, cycling, and taking transit. In partnership with the Centre for City Ecology the study has been extended by the Toronto Community Foundation to include pilot sites for the Mayors Tower Renewal program. Dr. Hess is also part of a University of Toronto research team examining the politics of transportation in Canada including the entrenched institutional processes sustaining a culture of “automobility” and auto-dependence.
Megan Jamieson is a Director with ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability. As the Director of the Canadian regional office, she is responsible for all national operational and program activities as well as contributing to ICLEI’s international senior management team. Megan has a Master’s of Arts in Environment and Management from Royal Roads University in Victoria, British Columbia. She also has a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science and an Environmental Engineering diploma, which provides her with a good balance of theoretical and technical understanding. Megan has been with ICLEI since 1999, over which time she has held many roles related to ICLEI’s program activities in strategic energy planning, climate mitigation and adaptation, as well as sustainability management.
Kevin J. Krizek is Associate Professor of Planning, Design, and Civil Engineering at the University of Colorado. He currently serves as Director of the PhD Program in Design and Planning and heads the Active Communities / Transportation (ACT) Research Group, a collection of students and researchers studying how land use-transportation policies influence household residential location decisions and travel behavior. He has been the PI for over $1 million of externally funded research on bicycling specific projects, including PI on the Nonmotorized Transportation Pilot Program-a product of the US Federal Transportation Legislation, SAFETEALU-to evaluate the walking and bicycling impacts of the $25 million projects for four pilot communities. Other bicycling specific research has focused on the safety elements, economic benefits, health dimensions, and general patterns of use related to travel behavior. Dr. Krizek is a founding editor of the Journal of Transport and Land Use, chair of TRB's Committee on Telecommunications and Travel and is on the editorial board of the Journal of the American Planning Association. He is the co-author or editor of two books and over thirty published articles (most recent book recently published, Planning for Place and Plexus: Metropolitan Land Use and Transport). His doctoral research examining relationships between household travel and urban form won the Barclay Gibbs Jones Award for Best Dissertation in the Field of Planning from the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning in 2001. More information is available here.
Eva Ligeti is the Executive Director of the Clean Air Partnership and co-chair of the GTA Clean Air Council. Ms. Ligeti's goal is to build programs, policies and practices that facilitate sustainable urban environments. She develops market and community-based research and strategies for: healthy, clean air; climate adapted, resilient cities; a sustainable built environment that reflects livable, sustainable urban planning, with convenient, accessible, public transit and active forms of transportation. Ms. Ligeti serves on numerous boards and committees including, Federation of Canadian Municipalities' Green Municipal Fund's Council, Brantford Power Inc. and the Advisory Council of the Nuclear Waste Management Organization. She is a member of the Province of Ontario's Expert Panel on Climate Change Adaptation and a co-chair of the Greening Greater Toronto. Ms. Ligeti is a lawyer and she teaches environmental law in the University of Toronto, Graduate Program in Environmental Science. Ms. Ligeti was Ontario's first Environmental Commissioner from 1995 until 1999. She was the Principal, Sheppard Campus, Seneca College of Applied Arts and Technology and Chair, School of Legal and Public Administration.
Martijn J. te Lintelo is a Senior Advisor of Mobility Policy, Department of Public Space, City of Nijmegen. Nijmegen, the oldest city in the Netherlands, has 160,000 inhabitants and invests about 1.0 million euro per year in cycling facilities. Mr. te Lintelo is a traffic/mobility advisor with a specialty in cycling and urban development (spatial planning) towards transport choice and modes. He works on bicycle policy development, advises decision-makers and city council, and conducts cycling projects (such as new cycle routes en cycleparking). Mr. te Lintelo is currently working on a bicycle bridge “The Snelbinder” (‘fast connection’) crossing the river Waal, various fast-bicycle lanes and the policy of cycle parking in the downtown area and around the central station. He designed the first fast bicycle lane in Nijmegen, the ‘snelfietsroute Nijmegen-Wijchen’. He is also a member of the Fietsberaad (Dutch Bicycle Council).
Eleanor McMahon is a communications and marketing professional with over 20 years experience. Ms. McMahon’s work includes senior corporate communications and marketing roles in the private, public and non-for profit sectors. She spent the early part of her career on Parliament Hill in roles of increasing responsibility including that of Press Secretary to the Right Honorable Jean Chrétien. Ms. McMahon is currently Principal of her own communications and marketing consultancy – McMahon Communications – where she works with clients on a broad range of reputation management activities: strategic and crisis communications, media, public and community relations, marketing, brand management, event management and speech preparation. Most recently, following the death of her husband, OPP Sergeant Greg Stobbart -- killed tragically in a cycling collision in June 2006 -- Ms. McMahon has been working to engineer legislative change in Ontario and is leading the development of a provincial, grassroots cycling advocacy organization in Ontario -- the Share the Road Cycling Coalition. In November 2008, Greg’s Law was tabled in the Ontario legislature as part of a larger Road Safety Bill, Bill 126 and it passed on April 22nd, 2009. The Coalition’s primary goals are encouraging cycling and in particular, promoting safe cycling. Ms. McMahon is a frequent speaker on active transportation, most recently at the 2008 National Bike Summit in Washington, hosted by the League of American Bicyclists and the 2008 National Bike Rally in Maine. She continues to visit a number of jurisdictions in the United States and Europe to study best practices in cycling accommodations, law enforcement approaches, legislative, and education and awareness programs and is currently working on organizing the Ontario Bike Summit (September 20-21st) in Waterloo Ontario.
Dave Meslin buried his Pontiac Sunfire in 1997, and immediately joined Toronto's vibrant community of bicycle riders and advocates. He was the lead organiser of Reclaim the Streets in 1998 and 1999 and organised Car Free Day in Toronto in 2001 and 2002. Dave has sat as an appointed member on both the Toronto Cycling Committee and the Pedestrian Committee and in 2002 he attended the Dia Sin Caro (Car Free Day) Mayor's Summit in Bogota, on behalf of Mel Lastman. In 2003, Dave organised 'Trailer Park', Toronto's first bike trailer festival. He has painted 'do it yourself' bike lanes directly on the street, and has outrun angry motorists at Critical Mass. Dave toured the US in 2007, visiting membership-driven bicycle advocacy groups in New York, Chicago, Portland, Seattle and San Francisco. The following year, Dave founded the Toronto Cyclists Union and published the first issue of Dandyhorse magazine.
Norma Moores, P. Eng. is a Senior Transportation Engineer at IBI Group. Ms. Moores was involved in the Transportation Association of Canada’s original Bikeway Traffic Control Guidelines for Canada (1998), a more than seven-year volunteer effort to publish national guidelines on signs and pavement markings for bikeways. She was then part of the consulting team engaged by TAC to update the Guidelines to review pavement markings associated with innovations in bikeway design. Ms. Moores is currently leading TAC’s project on a Synthesis of Practices for Active Transportation in Canada. She recently completed the Cape Breton Regional Municipality Active Transportation Plan, Cambridge Bikeway Network Plan and contributed to Ottawa’s Pedestrian Plan. Ms. Moores is on the Board of Directors for the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals (APBP) and a fellow of the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE). She bikes four seasons to work in Hamilton with help of bike racks on the buses for that escarpment climb home.
Jennifer Niece is a Transportation Planner with GO Transit - the Government of Ontario's inter-regional public transit system which links Toronto with the surrounding regions of the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). Jennifer works on the development of policies and projects that expand the choices for how customers travel to GO Stations with the goal of increasing the proportion of those who walk, cycle or take local transit. Jennifer is an avid cyclist and has over 8 years experience in sustainable community development, transportation demand management, and planning for cycling, walking, and public transit.
Janet O’Connell is the Executive Director of the Bicycle Trade Association of Canada (BTAC). In this role she is responsible for national operations for BTAC, Canada’s bike industry trade association. Members of BTAC include suppliers and retailers from coast-to-coast who gather annually at BTAC’s trade show, ExpoCycle. Ms. O'Connell also overseas the BTAC Grant program which funds cycling facilities, education and advocacy projects across Canada as well as the Canadian Bike Sales Report published annually. Ms. O'Connell and her team work to foster the development of partnerships and relationships across the bike industry, governments and advocacy groups and to promote public policies at all levels of government with the objective of getting more Canadians to cycle more often. She is a past Board member of the International Mountain Bike Association and a keen cyclist who enjoys riding with her two children and hopes that they will always choose a bike over a car when possible.
J. Robert S. Prichard is the President and CEO of Metrolinx. He is also past President and Chief Executive Officer of Torstar Corporation and President Emeritus of the University of Toronto where he previously served as dean of law and as a professor specializing in law and economics. Mr. Prichard is a director of Bank of Montreal, Onex Corporation and George Weston Ltd. He also serves as Vice-Chair of Canada’s Science, Technology and Innovation Council, Chairman of the Visiting Committee of Harvard Law School and a director of the Toronto Community Foundation. Mr. Prichard studied honours economics at Swarthmore College, received his MBA from the University of Chicago and earned law degrees at the University of Toronto and Yale University. He is an Officer of the Order of Canada, a Member of the Order of Ontario and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.
Nigel Tahair is a Senior Transportation Planner with the City of Toronto - a role which encompasses many aspects of cycling. On the planning side this includes policy development, preparation of master plans and conducting environmental assessments, and on the implementation side this covers development review, streetscape improvements and other specific projects. The overall objective is to continually explore and implement initiatives to encourage cycling in the City and reduce the share of automobile use - a key principle of the City's Official Plan. Mr. Tahair is currently involved in implementing a bikeway in conjunction with improvements to a major railway corridor in the northwest of the City, conducting cycle forecast and accommodating cycling in all options for the elevated Gardiner Expressway in the downtown area, incorporating cycling measures in the new Transportation Demand Management (TDM) guidelines for the City, and including cycling improvements as a key component of various new transit line projects. Mr. Tahair once cycled 325 km in one day and still rides a bike for the pure joy of it.
Usman Valiante's role within the Bicycle Trade Association of Canada is to foster partnerships and relationships across the bike industry, governments and advocacy groups and to promote public policies at all levels of government with the objective of getting more Canadians to cycle more often. By vocation Usman is a senior public policy analyst, commercial strategist, negotiator and advocate. His career focus has been on the development and evaluation of public policies and commercial programs regarding the environment. Usman is an avid bike commuter and recreational mountain-bike racer.
Gary Welsh is the General Manager of Transportation Services for the City of Toronto. His division is responsible for the delivery of traffic services, road operations, and right of way control for the City’s 9,500 streets and expressways. The combined operating and capital yearly budgets for this work exceeds $500 M. Gary is attempting to re-focus the role of Transportation Services within the City of Toronto by placing a much higher priority on the safe movement of pedestrians while at the same time accommodating the needs of vehicular traffic. Mr. Welsh is a professional Civil Engineer and is a graduate of the University of Toronto. He is also on the Board of Directors for the Transportation Association of Canada.
Andréa White-Kjoss has been leading Bikestation for 5 years. In her role, she oversees all aspects of planning, designing, building and operating bike-transit centers and multimodal hubs. Ms. White-Kjoss believes that bikes are an integral part of a healthy transportation system that also includes such options as electric bikes, scooters, car and bike sharing, autos, and transit. Bikestation is transforming the possibilities for alternative transportation systems by helping to create the infrastructure to support it. Ms. White-Kjoss embraces Bikestation’s vision for better transportation options and more sustainable mobility.
Paul Young has over 20 years experience as an urban designer, planner and health promoter. He works in a Community Health Centre in Toronto as a health promoter and also as a consultant with his office “Public Space Workshop” promoting active transportation. He has facilitated strategic planning and design workshops throughout Ontario for communities that want to improve walking and cycling. The South Riverdale Community Health Centre – where Mr. Young does some of his work promoting cycling infrastructure, was an early supporter of TCAT. He has been invited to speak at various conferences and universities to share his experiences in strategizing with Public Health, Planning, Transportation and the public to plan for healthier, sustainable communities. Mr. Young has two children that love to bike and walk but are not so keen on public meetings.