2010 Bike Hero and Extraordinary Bike Professional Award Winners Announced

Jamie Taliaferro, Bicycle Hero

The Regional Bicycle Advisory Committee, organized by the Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional Commission, has announced the winners of its 2nd Annual Bike Hero and Extraordinary Bike Professional awards.  The awards honor individuals who have shown extraordinary dedication to improving bicycle accommodations, education, access, and safety in the region.  Individuals were nominated throughout Bike Month, and winners were selected by the Regional Bicycle Advisory Committee.  The awards and winners are as follows:

Jamie Taliaferro, Bicycle Hero: The Bike Hero Award is awarded to an individual who has shown dedication to the use and advocacy of the bicycle as a transportation alternative in their day-to-day activities, their work in the community to improve bicycle accommodations, and their encouragement through advocacy or by example for others to replace vehicle trips with bicycle trips.

Sixth-grader Jamie Taliaferro has been recognized for his daily dedication to riding his bike to school, a habit he brought with him from his previous home in Colorado.  Given that his suburban neighborhood is not entirely bicycle friendly, the undertaking required some planning and cooperation by his school, which created safe parking for his bicycle and installed signage making drivers aware of bicyclists on the campus.  The Valley’s notoriously hilly topography contributes to an up-hill ride home, but the presence of a nearby greenway makes it easier for Jamie to make his trip with minimal conflict with motor vehicles.

Among the benefits cited by both Jamie and his mother, Patty, are improved health, increased concentration both at school and doing homework in the evenings, and the sense of independence Jamie gets from being in charge of his own transportation.  A video interview with Jamie can be seen on the RIDE Solutions YouTube channel at tinyurl.com/jamiehero.

Mike Jamison, Extraordinary Bike Professional.

Mark Jamison, Extraordinary Bike Professional: The Extraordinary Bicycle Professional Award is given to an employee in the public or private sector who has shown remarkable leadership in encouraging the use of bicycling as a transportation alternative.

Through Mark’s guidance and leadership, and more importantly, his direct participation in the planning and provision of bicycle accommodations, the City of Roanoke has made great strides in its efforts to facilitate and promote bicycling, locally and regionally.

Beyond his general duties as the City of Roanoke Transportation Division’s Manager of Transportation, Mark’s dedication and commitment is exemplified through his service on the City of Roanoke Bicycle Advisory Committee, the Regional Bicycle Advisory Committee, the Ciclovía planning committee, as well as his participation in various bicycle, pedestrian, and greenway-related meetings and activities too numerous to mention.

Additionally, Mark has been integral in developing the city’s Complete Streets Policy, Street Design Guidelines, Safe Routes to School Programs, and the Regional Bikeway Plan. Mark has also made consideration of bicycle accommodations an integral component of the Transportation Division’s annual paving program. Mark’s leadership and ongoing commitment to promoting and facilitating cycling were instrumental in the City of Roanoke’s recent designation as a Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Cyclists in May 2010.

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