Hi, my name is John Anderson and I’m happy to be writing to you today to introduce myself as the new Interim Executive Director of Bike San Diego (BikeSD). I’ve been a board member of BikeSD for a couple of years and am now stepping into the Executive Director role previously held by Sam Ollinger. Sam has led BikeSD since it was formed five years ago (and even before then, when it was first born as a website). Her efforts with BikeSD have clearly moved the conversation about bicycling and biking infrastructure in San Diego and I thank her for all the work and passion she has given to BikeSD. Thanks to work done in the past, there is progress on new bike lanes around town, increased attention to better policies and more funding for bike projects from elected officials and civic employees, and there is momentum toward better on-the-ground infrastructure. However, much of this progress is slow, start and stop, or at risk of being walked back. It takes consistent attention and pressure to ensure that projects move forward and the ideas (many of them good or even great) come to fruition and don’t remain on paper alone.
That is the role that BikeSD plays. We are present at public meetings, meeting with city staff and decision makers, and engaging with local media to push projects forward, question delays, and highlight examples of peer cities executing on transformational projects. If Chicago can add “108 miles of new protected bike lanes” San Diego can as well and we should expect no less than benchmarking to world leading cities. Along with other local organizations like Circulate San Diego, the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition and many others Bike San Diego is working everyday to push forward on making this a great place to live and biking is a big part of that.
Many of you reading this have been supporters of BikeSD for a long time – thank you! Whether you are a member that attends every event, an occasional speaker at public hearings, or a person that simply enjoys biking around town and enjoying our beautiful city you are the real power of this organization. Every additional voice amplifies the ability of BikeSD to push forward on our mission to “establish San Diego as a world-class bicycling city and create a more livable urban community by promoting everyday riding and advocating for bicycling infrastructure”.