Which of the following matches your idea of a membership organization? (1) You insist that members choose the board members (ALL of the board) and members control the agenda; or (2) You are content in having only a token vote with your duty being sending money and writing letters when the leaders say so.
If you like alternative (2) then relax. That's what the board plans for you. And if you don't act, that's what will happen. But if you think that's unacceptable then you need to act to get reform candidates on the ballot and elected to the board.
Want proof of the League's drift from a member organization to a Washington Lobby group? Then read the sad history of LAB governance. LAB Governance Timeline and A Brief History of LAB.
Below you can see information about the candidates we supported.
John Brooking came to cycling from a desire to find a more sustainable method of transportation to work and around town. Since commuting by bike year-round in Maine for the last 8 years, he has discovered that he also appreciates being part of the larger cycling community, enjoys the satisfaction of being able to get anywhere in the local community under his own power, and has even become a bit of a traffic engineering geek!
A member since 2007, John became an LCI in 2009, and wants to see the LAB continue to improve the Smart Cycling program, particularly in helping LCI's creatively structure and market the program content. He also would like to see more transparency in the Bicycle Friendly Communities program, especially to ensure that communities are not rewarded for mere quantity of bicycle-specific road infrastructure without regard to its quality.
His vision for the League is that beginning cyclists are supported with the education necessary to be efficient and safe bicyclists able to access all required destinations, and supported by an organization that advocates for their rights to use all public roads.
More about John
Additional details may be found in his Candidate's statement.
Khalil J. Spencer of Los Alamos, NM is a chemist and technical staff member at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. He has a Ph.D. in Geochemistry from SUNY Stony Brook.
Khalil is an active LCI (#1173) and a four-season bicycle commuter. He serves (2002-present) as a member of the Transportation Board of Los Alamos County, NM. He was a board member of the Bicycle Coalition of New Mexico and board member Vice President, and President of the Hawaii Bicycling League and was formerly a member of the Honolulu Mayor's Advisory Committee on Bicycling. Khalil organized the Los Alamos bike blog
More about Khalil
I am an active member of the Massachusetts Bicycle Coalition (MassBike), where my focus is on educating people about good cycling technique and advocating for cyclists' right to the road. I have been a League Cycling Instructor since 2008. I served on the Amherst Public Transportation and Bicycle Committee for six years.
I first learned to ride a bike, in the common sense, at the age of six or seven but I learned to DRIVE a bike in 2005. Due to a visual disability I cannot acquire a driver's license. I once thought of this limitation as a severe one. I made some trips by foot, bike, and bus and relied on friends and family members with cars to give me rides for some other trips. For the most part, however, the difficulty I had in traveling prevented me from living what most people would consider a full life.
In the summer of 2005, I was looking for another way to get to my choir practice. I had been going with my wife in her car. I dug out a copy of John Forester's Effective Cycling, which I had never read and knew nothing about. From this book, I learned that I could go wherever I wanted, whenever I wanted, without the excessive thinking, planning, and worrying that I had formerly associated with bicycle travel. It was the most revelatory experience of my life.
I travel almost exclusively by bicycle. I have found that good cycling habits provide me with more freedom and flexibility than I could ever achieve through driving a motor vehicle. I have cycled in nine states and the District of Columbia, on a wide variety of roads under a wide variety of conditions. I have made trips of up to 200 miles. One of my 200-mile trips was to Fryeburg, Maine for my instructor certification. My typical annual cycling distance over the past several years has been about 2,500 miles.
Over the past year, my life has been made very difficult by police officers in two nearby towns who disapprove of my controlling a narrow lane and even of my cycling on major roads at all. I have been stopped and threatened numerous times, arrested once, had my property seized twice, and charged with disorderly conduct twice and unlawful wiretapping once (because of the camera I had on my helmet the last time I was stopped). More information about my saga is accessible from my blog.
This experience has made my right-to-the-road mission extremely personal. These police officers left me in such a vulnerable state while traveling that I was virtually imprisoned in my home. It became impractical for me travel except within Amherst and for particularly important trips. My options for these important trips were either cycling with the risk of another disastrous police encounter, finding someone to drive me in a car, or in rare cases taking a bus.
My case is not unique. Over the past fifteen years, the League's efforts to overturn the widespread myths and biases regarding cycling, which partially motivated the abusive treatment I received from police officers, and defend cyclists' right to the road have grown increasingly lethargic. The League completely ignored my pleas for help and did not even communicate the problem to other League members to aid me in gathering support.
In another case that is similar to mine, the League went so far as to spread misinformation about cyclist Reed Bates in an attempt to publicly discredit him and his supporters. I want to see the League return to its historic mission of educating the public about cycling and defending the right to travel. I want to see a League that is open, responsive, and loyal to its members. This is why I am running for a director position.
More about Eli
Link to Eli's blog and on-line petition.
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Revised 9/30/10 Post-election update on 12/7/10