Two years ago, I rode in the Climate Ride of California. Now, I am a full-time staffer at the organization for which I raised funds in the first place. It sounds serendipitous, but please continue reading about how I went on one of the greatest bicycle tours of my life, raised money for the cause, and found myself pursuing my passion. More importantly, find out about how you can do the same.

This year I am back in the saddle for the Climate Ride, but this time I work for the organization. The first time, I rode with my fiance Rose. We are now happily married. Truth be told, she is the one who actually got me into the whole thing in the first place. One day I came home and she said, ” Oh by the way, I am going on a bicycle tour.”

I replied, ” Like hell, without me!”

So naturally I got online and signed myself up. About four months later I recalled that moment as I rode up and over the hills of San Francisco, a bag full of a week’s supplies on my back. And that was just to get to the starting bus! Honestly, we might have made it a little bit more difficult than necessary on ourselves.

Three hundred riders, four hundred miles; we were about to begin our epic journey. Upon arrival at the bus we met up with our team captain, Jen, SVBC’s veteran event coordinator. We had no idea what the next five days had in store for us. From Eureka to San Francisco, we made new friends, enjoyed good laughs and good food.

The necessary experience to get there was alien to me: fundraising. Surprisingly, it was easier than it first seemed. All you have to do is ask. It is truly amazing to see some of the people that you know and would never suspect being some of your biggest supporters.

On the ride, I was given the opportunity to meet environmental and non-profit leaders from all over the country. There were executives from the National Resource Defense Council, The Nature Conservancy, and many other national and globally active non-profits. Little did I know I was going to be putting my own nose to the grindstone at the organization for which I was riding.

After that ride, I found myself to be even more of a dedicated bicycle commuter. I had experimented with racing in college and found myself riding on the weekends. Yet, after that experience, I found myself dedicated to being on two wheels day in and day out. I found that it truly is the solution to almost all our problems.

So here I am, the new and first ever Membership & Volunteer Coordinator at Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition writing to you, asking you to join me on this year’s Climate Ride. Wheels roll out May 17th for a wild adventure from San Francisco to Sacramento. We’ll tour through wine country for the name of the environment and advocacy. Join me!