This week Bay Area Bike to Work Day (BTWD) organizers named the winners of the 2018 Bike Commuter of the Year awards. Given to individuals for inspiring bicycling in their Bay Area communities, the Bike Commuter of the Year award recognize a winner from each of the nine San Francisco Bay Area counties for their commitment to bicycling as their primary mode of transport.
The 2018 winners include Jeffrey Buell from Alameda County, who drops his two kids off at school on a three-seater tandem bicycle, and then pedals on to his work in social services with the city of Berkeley. He hopes to pass on the tradition of bike commuting to his kids. In San Francisco County, Maggie Chestney has dealt with nine different knee operations over the course of 17 years. The first eight left her in pain, but thankfully, the ninth was a success, and by August, just one year after the surgery, she’s hoping to be able to bike commute five days a week!
The complete list of 2018 Bike Commuter of the Year award winners:
- Alameda County: Jeffrey Buell (see above) is teaching his children how to live a more healthy and sustainable lifestyle.
- Contra Costa County: Laura Davis is a nurse practitioner in Walnut Creek who bikes 10 miles roundtrip to and from work. A strong advocate for preventing injuries before they occur, Laura’s passion for being healthy and active inspires her patients and others around her.
- Marin County: Matt Young bike commutes daily 26 miles round trip from Mill Valley to San Francisco to his job at First Republic Bank. The best part of his ride to work? “The daily camaraderie with my commute friends and everyone I meet along the way,” says Matt.
- Napa County: Zac Soper, who became an avid bike commuter after a car accident in 2009, often rides over 100 miles each week, going to work, doing errands, visiting friends and more.
- San Francisco: Maggie Chestney (see above) says that “biking throughout San Francisco gives you the chance to explore the city’s many historic neighborhoods and vibrant cultures through a unique lens — a lens that allows you to be more present in your surroundings.”
- San Mateo County: Morgan Cole rides 17 miles round trip from his home in Portola Valley to his job at the David and Lucile Packard Foundation in Los Altos. Morgan champions BTWD activities, bicycle workshops and more for his colleagues.
- Santa Clara County: Molly Clancy has been a cyclist from a very early age and a committed two-wheeled commuter starting in college when she got her $20 blue Schwinn bike. Since moving to the Bay Area four years ago, she has continued to ride her trusty blue bike everywhere.
- Solano County: Kenneth Stats began biking when he was eight years old and for the last 10 years has pedaled to work every day from his home in Suisun City to the Clorox plant in Fairfield unless the weather is too stormy to ride safely.
- Sonoma County: Tracey Jones, a medical doctor in physical medicine and rehabilitation, demonstrates the benefits of physical activity to her patients and coworkers at Kaiser Permanente in Santa Rosa by bicycle commuting to work every day. In fact, when she moved to Santa Rosa, she prioritized choosing a home within cycling distance of the hospital.
Each winner will receive dinner for four and a water bottle from Chipotle; a bike headlight and mini toolkit from Mike’s Bikes; and a laminated, boxed set of San Francisco Bay Trail map cards from the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG). You can read all about the winners at youcanbikethere.com/bike-commuter-of-the-year.
Many of the winners will be honored on Bike to Work Day — the Bay Area’s premier bicycling celebration — on Thursday, May 10, 2018. The awards are part of many events scheduled during the San Francisco Bay Area’s National Bike Month celebration this May.
Become a Bike Commute Champion — Participate in the Bay Area Bike Challenge!
Get on the road to becoming a future Bike Commuter of the Year winner by joining the Bay Area Bike Challenge in May. Teams of up to eight — made up of friends, families, coworkers or neighbors — compete for top honors and bragging rights by collectively riding thousands of miles all month long. The Challenge begins May 1 and runs through May 31. To register, visit www.lovetoride.net/bayarea?locale=en-US
Not ready for a month-long bike commute commitment? Join hundreds of thousands new and seasoned bike commuters on Bike to Work Day. Presented by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), 511 and Kaiser Permanente, Bike to Work Day encourages local residents to try commuting on two wheels for the first time and celebrates those who bike to work regularly. Complete event information, including Energizer Station locations, is available at YouCanBikeThere.com.
In addition to MTC (the transportation planning, financing and coordinating agency for the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area), 511 (the region’s traveler information system) and Kaiser Permanente, Bike to Work Day 2018 receives regional support from the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD), Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART), Clear Channel Outdoor, Clif Bar, Ride Report and Exodus Travel, as well as from many sponsors at the local level. Bike to Work Day’s media sponsor is NBC Bay Area-KNTV/Telemundo 48. Prizes for the Bike Commuter of the Year winners were donated by the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG), Chipotle and Mike’s Bikes. Day-of 2-for-1 promotion provided by Chipotle. The event is made possible through the cooperation of thousands of volunteers, county congestion management agencies, local jurisdictions, local bicycling coalitions and MTC.