Open Letter to the League of American Bicyclists Board of Directors

To the Board of Directors of the League of American Bicyclists,

Many in the bicycling movement were energized to see the League of American Bicyclists commit to creating a bicycle-friendly America for everyone. Understanding the critical importance of greater equity, diversity and inclusion to the success of the bicycling movement, the League established as one of the four primary goals in its 2015–2018 Strategic Plan to “build a board, staff and network of partners and allies that represent and are connected to America’s diverse communities.

We want to congratulate the board on its recent appointment of Alex Doty as the next Executive Director of the League of American Bicyclists. Mr. Doty has a proven track record of success in both growing nonprofit organizations and creating lasting change that has benefited a diverse range of people who bike. We are confident that Mr. Doty has the competence to restore the League to a level of organizational health that will benefit advocates and bike riders across the country.

We in no way aim to minimize the challenges faced by the League’s Board of Directors nor to criticize the selection of Mr. Doty, who we believe to be a fine candidate for the position. But we must express our concern as diverse leaders — women, advocates of color and equity allies — within our collective active transportation movements that the organization “appointed” a successor to this critical leadership position rather than conducting a formal nationwide search. We believe that the League’s decision to bypass a national search is a recurring example of an organizational practice that systematically undermines equity, diversity and inclusion within our growing bike/walk movement.

As leaders and members, we look to the League of American Bicyclists to communicate our movement’s interests to our federal lawmakers and, as such, it’s critically important for the organization to include our nation’s and movement’s diverse perspectives in its advocacy work. We believe that any organization that values equity, diversity, and inclusion should begin with intentional hiring practices that seek to ensure a diverse pool of candidates. While we understand that an extensive search process takes time and resources, we are confident that an open and transparent search would have yielded many qualified candidates and helped the organization regain the credibility and trust that is essential during a period of transition.

However, we are heartened by Mr. Doty’s stated commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion and we ask that…

  1. The organization pledge to engage in an intentional, and inclusive search to fill current (and future) staff vacancies.
  2. The League pledge to continue to invest in its Women Bike program and/or Equity Initiative (inclusive of gender equity) — ideally through dedicated staff but by whatever means are feasible given current financial challenges — in a way that supports women and advocates of color rising in the ranks of transportation advocacy and policy work.
  3. The League pledge to make a public and intentional effort toward gender equity and increased diversity among speakers and presenters at the National Bike Summit. This approach has already proven fruitful for the Online News Association’s annual conference. (Please contact the undersigned for contacts for ideas in this regard.)

We, the undersigned, believe deeply in the League’s stated mission to create a bicycle-friendly America for everyone. As such, we look forward to engaging in further dialogue on how the League can be a leader in breaking down the structural barriers that stand in the way of the diverse board, staff and network of partners and advocates the organization seeks to achieve — for the benefit of all.

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Liz Cornish
Carolyn Szczepanski
Hamzat Sani
Naomi Doerner
Elizabeth Kiker
Alison Hill Graves
Alexis Lantz
Helen Ho
Dorothy Le
Keith Holt
Katie Monroe
Nelle Pierson
Mary Lauran Hall
Olatunji Oboi Reed
Samantha Ollinger
Chema Hernández Gil
Barb Chamberlain
Monica Garrison
Dr. Adonia Lugo
Tiffany Robinson
Melody Hoffmann
Renée Moore
Zakcq Lockrem
Dena Driscoll
Oliver Rick
David Gordon Wilson (LAB Life Member)
Yvonne Rucker
Megan Ramey
Tanya DeOliveira
Do Lee
Megan Odett
Liz Jose
Gwen Urey
Brian Kall
Meryl LaBorde
Laurie Lemieux
John Stehlin
Lili Leonard
Scott Williams
Sadie Robinson
Brenda Ruby
Elizabeth Lyttleton
Julie Harris
Michelle Swanson
Kimberly Kinchen
Daniel Hoagland
Stephanie Noll
Benjamin Groff
Kristen Jeffers
Ursula Sandstrom
Alexandra Zimmermann
Amy Johnson Ely
Marley Blonsky
Maria Sipin
Eric Bunch
Melissa Balmer
Shannon Brescher Shea
James Hannig
Tami Traeger
Jennifer Klausner
Leah Fantle
Lolly Walsh
Herbie Huff
Jennifer Trujillo
Elizabeth Bolton
Dan Yablonsky
Tara Goddard
Carlos Hernandez
Carina Gaz
Matt Martin
David E Davis
Terrie Chan
Edurne Lopez
Lindsey Parker
Glen Buhlmann
Karl Fundenberger
Paolo Cosulich-Schwartz
Renee Rivera
Joanna Oltman Smith
Morgan Scherer
Francisco D. Grajales
Jim Brown
Nathan Phillips
Erin Daly
Brent Buice
Rachel Clement
Casey Ashenhurst
April Rivera
Amelia Conlen
Darren Flusche
Steve Bozzone
Bekka Wright (Bikeyface)
Dave Snyder
Thomas Hillman
Janet Lafleur
Jessica Norberg
Colin Bogart
A. J. Zelada, OD
Eric Bruins
Vaessa Cascio
Tamika L. Butler
Jay Thatcher
David Palmer
Tony Dang
Stephen Zavestoski
Liz Murphy
Jaime Fearer
Larry Fitzpatrick
Eric Rogers
Adrian Lipscombe
Jessica Roberts
Gillian Burgess
Tina Bechler
Echo Rivera
Jessica Binder
Robin Randels
Andrea Adleman
Leo Stone
Hjordis Grace Armstrong
Lindsey Bartley (Kelley)
Jacob VanSickle
Sylvia Crum
Diane Rudholm
William Abbey
Carol Feucht
Andrea Clinkscales
W. Preston Tyree
Rebecca Resman
Michelle Atkins
Laura Padalino
Mike Freiberger
Gin Kilgore
John A. Petty II
Paul Wirsing
Bill Feeney
Stuart Nottingham
Robert Ping
JI Swiderski
Robert Ping
JI Swiderski
Debi Toews
Iris Sutcliffe
Elly Blue
Mary Anderson, LCI 1678
Josh Kavanagh
Cooper Jones (LAB Life Member)
Andrew Fung Yip
Max Hepp-Buchanan
Kirstin Jensvold-Rumage
Belle Hsu
Jackson Lam
Carlos Morales
Justin Resnick
Danny Gamboa
CJ Voges
Amy Wong
Cynthia Rose
Noel Mickelberry