Candidate Statements

Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition Board of Directors Election for 2018 term

All individuals running for the Board have been placed on the current Board of Directors’ recommended slate. There are 6 seats to be filled. Review the candidate statements below.

New candidates

Jorg Heinemann

Jorg is a life-long cycling enthusiast who grew up in Sunnyvale back when kids rode everywhere as basic transportation and drivers kept their eyes on the road.  Jorg recently spent two years based in France where he had a chance to sample the bike infrastructure of most of the major European cities as well as test his legs on the major alpine passes of the Tour de France.  He is eager to use his experience as a business executive to grow SVBC’s capacity to make the roads safe for all types of riders.

Jorg Heinemann is a purpose-driven leader with over 25 years of business development, sales, operational, and large-scale business transformation experience.

He serves as Chief Commercial Officer at Primus Power, a provider of low-cost, long-life and long duration energy storage systems and previously served in several executive leadership roles with SunPower and Accenture.

Jorg lives in San Carlos with his wife and four children (ages 12-25).

 

Josh Mello, AICP

Josh is the District Transportation Lead for Google and has a long track record as a transportation manager specializing in bikeway and complete street planning, design, and construction. Projects he’s worked on include the Cross-City Trail in Wilmington (NC), NACTO Urban Bikeway Design Guide, and the first bicycle plan for the City of Compton. Prior to Google, Josh served as the Chief Transportation Official for the City of Palo Alto, and Vice-chair of the VTA Technical Advisory Committee, where he became a thought leader on all things bikes for neighboring cities to emulate. He has also worked for Alta Planning + Design, Atlanta (GA), and Wilmington (NC). While with the City of Atlanta, he helped establish the position of Chief Bicycle Officer, which is partially grant-funded. In 2013, Josh won an award for Professional of the Year from the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals and a Blinkie Award from the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition.

When he was with Palo Alto, Josh commuted from Millbrae by bike and Caltrain. He is still trying to figure out his Google commute. On weekends, he likes to take his whole family on bicycle rides throughout the Bay Area. With his professional experience in transportation, knowledge of Silicon Valley cities, and personal commitment to bikes as a form of transportation, Josh will be a tremendous asset to SVBC.

Margarita Parra

Margarita is a car-free cities lover, cycling fanatic, coffee addict and a Colombian.

She is trained as an environmental engineer and has been working internationally in the field of sustainable transportation to reduce local pollution and global carbon emissions.

Margarita worked for 8 years with the Hewlett Foundation managing the transport portfolio as part of their Global Climate Initiative, and before that she helped the ClimateWorks Foundation to promote clean energy and sustainable transport solutions to reduce pollution in cities in Latin America.

Currently she is a strategy consultant with GRID Alternatives, integrating zero emissions mobility, renewable energy and equity in California. Margarita also serves on the Board of the Sustainable and Low Carbon Transport Partnership, a global organization dedicated to providing a voice for sustainable transport before the United Nations organizations and development agencies.

In her free time Margarita bikes everywhere in Redwood City with her husband and 6-year-old daughter, including biking to school in the mornings!

Incumbent Candidates

Amie Ashton

Amie is a passionate cycling evangelist, environmentalist, and urbanist. She is committed to the idea that cities should have cyclists in mind during local and regional decision making. Amie works as an environmental planner and project manager and has championed bike-related amenities as part of roadway improvements, commercial office, public park, and residential development projects throughout the Bay Area. She is a dedicated bike/Caltrain commuter and appreciates the physical and mental boost that an active commute provides. As a board member, Amie leverages her connections with city staff and partners the development world to ensure that necessary bicycle infrastructure is included in long-range planning documents and is ultimately constructed. If you build bike paths, they will ride! 

Andrew Hsu

Andrew Hsu has been riding a bicycle ever since a young kid, when his dad needed a companion to go on his bike trips to Washington DC from their suburban Virginia home. From then, Andrew’s passion for cycling has developed, much to the dismay of his family, into a life-long obsession. Rarely a day goes by when Andrew does not talk about bicycles and their complementary benefits to our modern society, or attempt to simplify a complex issue through the use of a bicycle racing analogy.

Andrew joined the Peninsula Velo board of directors in 2010, and then served as president from 2013 to 2018. Outside of PenVelo, Andrew has led the bike-to-work efforts at his work since 2011. Unlike the competition focus of PenVelo, much of Andrew’s bike-to-work advocacy is spent convincing his fellow work colleagues that *anyone* with a bicycle can be a bike commuter. More recently, Andrew became the Boy Scouts Merit Badge counselor for the cycling, teaching safe and responsible cycling to the Scouts in Troop 321. Andrew’s advocacy efforts for all these organizations is reinforced through his close affiliation with the SVBC. Andrew is an outspoken regional advocate for getting more people to ride their bicycles, and for safer roads in the Bay Area.

Andrew works as the Director of Concept Prototyping at Synaptics, the leading supplier of human interface solutions based in the San Jose. Andrew has been with the company for just over 20 years.

James Lucas

As a youth, James Lucas fell in love with the freedom his blue, 24” wheeled Schwinn Varsity could give him. He didn’t know at the time that this passion would cause him to seek out all knowledge bike related and result in his becoming a race mechanic, fit technician, and an expert in retail operations. He has spent the last 10 years managing people, operating a business, and converting people into regular cyclists.

At UCSB, James served the campus community on multiple boards of governance and as the Student Director of the Sport Clubs program. He competed in the first ever Collegiate Mountain Bike National Championships, raced incessantly, and provided mechanical support for Shimano and the USA Cycling National Team during his tenure there. Afterward, he followed his passion to the University of Wyoming to work on his Master’s in Exercise Physiology. There, he taught Exercise Physiology and served his campus community on boards of governance.

James is now working on his next level of service through bicycle advocacy. He went to his first National Bicycle Summit in 2010 and saw what individuals can do accomplish just by showing up. James is the former owner of Calmar Bicycles and recently returned to school to get a teaching credential. When not studying, he follows his two young sons on their rides to the park.