BWTB Coalition

Bike/Walk Tampa Bay is a regional coalition of citizens, advocates, professionals, and allied organizations created to make walking and bicycling the preferred modes of transportation in the Tampa Bay region. The Coalition was formed by a partnership between the following:

  • New North Transportation Alliance
  • Tampa Downtown Partnership
  • Westshore Alliance
  • Tampa Bay Area Regional Transportation Authority
  • St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership
  • Florida Department of Transportation
  • Community Traffic Safety Teams of Tampa Bay
  • Metropolitan Planning Organizations of Hillsborough and Pinellas Counties

What the community can expect

We will work to make walking and bicycling safe, healthy, and fun for everyone who lives, works, or plays in the Tampa Bay area.

  • We tell the story of why walking and bicycling benefits everyone in the Tampa Bay area
  • We are the regional resource for the E’s – education, enforcement, engineering, encouragement, evaluation
  • We advocate for a culture change: walkable and bikeable communities

To accomplish this goal, we engage and empower local communities and stakeholders to achieve our region’s vision for a better transportation future.

Dave Andreychuk


Dave Andreychuck was confirmed in October 2020 as the second chair of the Bike/Walk Tampa Bay Advisory Board. Mr. Andreychuk is best known as a player for the Tampa Bay Lightning, which he joined in 2001. He retired from the Lightning in 2006, and went on to serve as a Community Representative for the team. He currently serves as the Lightning’s Vice President of Corporate & Community Affairs. In 2007 he founded the Dave Andreychuk foundation

Rob Zimprich

Vice Chair

Rob is the Chief Financial Officer of the University Area Community Development Corporation (UACDC) in northern Tampa. Rob is a recreational bicyclist and runner and enjoys anything outdoors: fishing, kayaking, boating, and motorcycling. Rob is passionate about children’s education and safety, cancer awareness, and volunteering in his community.

Channing Bickford

Westshore Alliance Representative

Channing Bickford is a Transportation Planner with AECOM in Tampa and is passionate about planning, expanding, and improving the region’s active transportation network. As a transportation planning professional, Channing has worked on pedestrian and bicycle focused projects such as the Westshore Area Transportation Action Plan and the 131st Avenue Preliminary Land Use and Transportation (PLAT) Study. After being introduced to cycle-commuting while living in Beijing, Channing frequently rides between his home in Tampa Heights and the AECOM office in the Westshore area. Channing also bicycles for exercise, recreation, and as a way to explore new parts of the region and Florida as a whole. Channing also likes to explore the region on-foot and can often be found strolling around historic areas in the region such as Ybor City, Hyde Park, Old Northeast, and Roser Park. As a member of the Bike Walk Tampa Bay Board, Channing hopes to use his professional and personal experience to bring about a safer and more complete transportation network for all users.

Joe Freeman

St. Petersburg Representative

As the operations manager of Coast Bike Share, Joe has found a way to turn his passion for bicycles into a career. Joe moved to Tampa in 2014, and got involved with Coast shortly after. He helped facilitate the launches of Coast Tampa, Juice Bike Share in Orlando, Coast St Pete, and Share A Bull Bikes at USF. He is very active in the local cycling community, and helps out as ride support/safety for many social rides in the Tampa area.

Prior to moving to Tampa, Joe attended college at Florida Gulf Coast University in Ft Myers, with a major in Environmental Studies. He was very involved in the cycling scene in the SWFL area, including helping to relaunch Critical Mass in Ft Myers. Joe sees cycling not only as a fun, healthy activity, but also as a tool of empowerment.

Billy Hattaway

Regional/At Large Representative

Billy Hattaway, PE, is a Principal in Fehr & Peers’ Orlando office with over 40 years of professional transportation planning and engineering experience. During his career, he has held many roles, including key-leadership roles with the Florida Department of Transportation, consulting, and most recently as Director of Transportation for the City of Orlando. While leading FDOT District One, Billy also led the development and implementation of the Department’s Complete Streets policy, and Pedestrian Bicycle Safety initiatives focused on improving bicycle and pedestrian safety. Most recently while with the City of Orlando, Billy led the development of the Vision Zero Action Plan, and brought Orlando into membership status at NACTO, Complete Streets Coalition, Vision Zero Network, and the Congress for the New Urbanism. He also formed and leads the Vision Zero Emphasis Area at the FDOT Pedestrian/Bike Safety Coalition and is the Co-Chair for rewriting the Florida Greenbook to a Complete Streets approach.

J. Steele Olmstead

Regional/At Large Representative

J. Steele Olmstead is a trial attorney who has helped injured bicyclists for years. He grew up riding a bicycle and adopted a bicycling lifestyle beginning as a military kid on the U. S. Air Force bases on which he lived. He has been active on behalf of bicyclists’ rights years, representing injured cyclists, writing to government agencies about dangerous cycling conditions, and speaking before transit agencies, governmental boards, and Bike/Ped committees to promote bicycling. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Florida Bicycling Association.

Lena Pacheco

Tampa's Downtown Representative

Lena works at Tampa General Hospital where she is the Manager of Parking and Transportation and where her responsibilities include oversight of the visitor and team member garage and surface lot parking, the shuttle bus and on campus courtesy shuttle cart operations, valet, and courier services.

New North Transportation Alliance

A public-private partnership that unites government, business, and the community to address transportation needs in the New North area of Tampa, FL from Temple Terrace and Busch Boulevard North from the University Area and New Tampa.

St Petersburg Downtown Partnership


Established in 1962, the St Petersburg Downtown Partnership is a shareholder supported, not-for-profit organization that is focused on promoting urban (sustainable) growth and redevelopment in downtown St. Petersburg, Florida.

Tampa Downtown Partnership


Fostering Tampa’s vibrant and diverse multi-use downtown neighborhoods, TDP plays a key role in creating a 24-hour urban center where people can learn, live, work and play. Programs such as the Clean and Safe team and transportation initiatives make accessing and navigating downtown an easy and enjoyable experience.

Westshore Alliance


A business-based, membership-driven, organization dedicated to promoting, shaping future growth and fostering economic prosperity of the Westshore Business District. The Alliance has made significant progress in the areas of beautification, transportation, crime prevention, education, area marketing of the District, and improving the working environment of Florida’s largest commercial business district.

Community Traffic Safety Teams

The CTST program is a multi-disciplined Federal, State and Local Government endorsed program developed to reduce the number of traffic crashes that occur on Florida roadways. The program was created in response to federal legislation (the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1990), which calls for local participation, and solutions to traffic crashes, injuries and fatalities on local roadways. The program is managed by the Florida Department of Transportation and supported by a wide range of community partners.

Armed with carefully developed missions, goals and objectives, the Teams undertake traffic safety-related projects and activities and serve as a resource to any and all communities, local government agencies and roadway users to assist in the reduction of traffic crashes and the related injuries and fatalities on our roadways.

Alert Today Alive Tomorrow

As part of the FDOT initiative, the “Alert Today Alive Tomorrow” campaign is presented via TV, radio, social media, transit advertising, local education, and enforcement activities. The message that “Alert Today Alive Tomorrow” is a reminder for all roadway users to pay attention and follow the rules of the road.

Armed with carefully developed missions, goals and objectives, the Teams undertake traffic safety-related projects and activities and serve as a resource to any and all communities, local government agencies and roadway users to assist in the reduction of traffic crashes and the related injuries and fatalities on our roadways.



The Tampa Bay Area Regional Transportation Authority (TBARTA) was created by the Florida State Legislature in 2007 to develop and implement a Regional Transportation Master Plan for the seven-county West Central Florida region consisting of Citrus, Hernando, Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas and Sarasota Counties. The authority’s purpose is to improve mobility and expand multimodal transportation options for passengers and freight throughout the seven-county region.

Hillsborough MPO

(813) 272-5940

The Hillsborough County Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) is a transportation policy-making board comprised of representatives from local governments and transportation agencies. According to federal and state laws, the Hillsborough County MPO is responsible for establishing a continuing, cooperative and comprehensive transportation planning process for Hillsborough County. Key responsibilities are the creation of the twenty-year Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP) and the five-year Transportation Improvement Program (TIP).

Pinellas MPO

(727) 464-8250

The Pinellas County Metropolitan Planning OrganizationPhoto of an MPO in session at Courthouse (MPO) was established in 1977 following the passage of the Federal Highway Act of 1974. The task of the MPO is to develop plans, policies and priorities that guide local decision making on transportation issues. Principal responsibilities include the development of a 20-year Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP), a five-year Transportation Improvement Program (TIP), a two-year Unified Planning Work Program, and related transportation planning studies and projects.

The MPO seeks to improve transportation in the county for all principal modes of travel, including mass transit, walking, and bicycling, as well as automobile. The MPO prioritizes capital improvements to address the county’s travel needs and allocates federal funding to implement the projects as identified in the TIP and the LRTP.

The MPO relies extensively on public involvement to guide the development of its plans and programs. Staff members regularly appear before professional and civic groups to discuss transportation topics and issues related to its planning program. Staff also attends public events such as community forums, workshops and festivals to share information about MPO plans and to collect feedback from citizens regarding their transportation concerns and interests.

Nicole Roberts

St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership

Community Outreach Coordinator

Nicole Roberts didn’t always embrace bicycling. “I learned how to ride a bike at four years old, proclaiming to my neighborhood that my father was ‘trying to kill me’ when he would let me roll down our driveway without holding my bike to ensure I didn’t fall over,” she reflected. Nicole remained fairly apprehensive of bike riding until she got older, and it wasn’t until riding Coast Bike Share bikes while planning the St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership’s 2019 Car-Free Scavenger Hunt that she truly felt comfortable biking around downtown St. Pete. “I still plan my routes around the Pinellas Trail and other bike lanes around downtown when I can.”

When Nicole interviewed for the position of Community Outreach Coordinator with the St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership, the CEO, Jason Mathis, shared about its rich history in Downtown St. Pete, and how the founders were particularly instrumental in bringing the University of South Florida St. Petersburg campus to the community. “As a recent USFSP graduate, I felt compelled and honored to have the opportunity to give back to this organization that was responsible for the reason I had come to this city I love so much to begin with,” Nicole shared. “After being in my role only a few weeks, we gathered the transportation providers in the area and kicked off the Car-Free St. Pete campaign, which I now feel is some of my most important work in this role! I feel so honored to be involved in helping our city become more car-free, resulting in better sense of place, healthier individuals, safer streets, a cleaner environment, and a stronger economy.”

“My best moment [in my role] so far was earlier this year when we were selecting applicants to put together our Car-Free St. Pete Committee. Honestly, I thought we would be struggling to get 12 individuals to sign up, which is how big we wanted our committee to be, but we ended up having over 20 applicants! While it was awful to have to turn people away, it was so exciting to see how many people are passionate about transportation in our community!”

Laura Cisneros

Love to Ride

Region Manager, North America

Laura Cisneros, Love to Ride Region Manager for North America, has been riding ever since she got her first Schwinn Sting-Ray banana bike in 1974. “It was cute and I felt cute on it!” Laura reminisced. “Today, I ride because it makes me feel strong, independent, and free, and a little goofy, too,” she shared. “I feel like ‘me’ when I’m on my bike.”

Love to Ride was a very natural fit for Laura. As a CEO and long-time health and fitness professional, she spent years building service and consumer goods brands to spread the great word about exercise. Along with being eco-conscious, her love for biking made Love to Ride a heavenly fit. “I could not be happier.”

“Most moments are great on a bike,” said Laura. Some of her best are when she has no particular place to be, no particular pace to ride, and nothing on her mind. “On those rides, I’m just aware of everything––the leaves shimmering on the trees, the bug crossing my path, the smell of bread from the bakery, the breeze in my hair (under my helmet of course!).”

Joy Hancock

Bike Florida

Executive Director

Joy joined the Bike Florida team in late 2014 and has been Executive Director since 2016.

Originally from Oklahoma, Joy and her husband discovered Florida when they competed in a triathlon at Clearwater Beach in 2009. The combination of beach, perfect November weather, and the Pinellas Trail was all it took for them to fall in love with the Sunshine State. Now they spend as much time as possible outside, whether it be bicycling, running, walking, or kayaking.

Joy’s other interests include photography, learning foreign languages, creative writing, and travel, and she can’t wait to begin her next adventure.

Paul Schlimme

Tampa Bay Cycling

Group Leader

I started riding five years ago after my son did the triathlon on Honeymoon Island and I saw there were people of all different ages and abilities also participating––and they were happy! I told my son at his event I would do a sprint triathlon with him the next year, and he said “okay, dad.” I went from an overweight couch potato at 58 to figuring out how to swim a half mile, bike 12 miles, and run a 5K. I loved the biking––running, not so much.

I became a ride leader right away as there were very few introductory (slower) group rides. I also love variety so I could do different trails every weekend (if you lead a ride, you get to choose when, where, what, how far, how fast, etc.). It has been very rewarding for me to lead rides. I lost 60 pounds, am off all medications, including anti-depressants and cholesterol meds. Riding has been my fountain of youth and I have made dozens of new friends.

The group I lead, Tampa Bay Cycling, used to be called Pinellas Pedalers, but that name was limiting and misleading as we love variety and lead rides not only in Pinellas County, but also Hillsborough, Pasco, Manatee, and occasionally in other counties, too. Because we offer over 50 group rides a month, have a friendly non-trash-talking environment, and are free to participants, our growth has been phenomenal. We have doubled our participation in the past year to over 2,100 members on Meetup and over 2,800 on Facebook.

With Bike/Walk Tampa Bay’s support, we just added a third tool to Tampa Bay Cycling’s group growth: Love to Ride Tampa Bay, which includes ride tracking and periodic contests. In just three months, our Love to Ride group has logged the second-highest number of miles worldwide of any size group. Hopefully that recognition will help Tampa Bay Cycling grow even further and make folks aware that Tampa Bay is the place to bike!

Tampa Bay Cycling is different than many groups as we have no dues, we offer rides at a variety of speeds, and in many varied locations throughout Tampa Bay. We aren’t limited to one town or neighborhood. All rides are guided by volunteer leaders. We foster group safety on rides, and truly do not allow trash-talking about other riders. The vast majority of rides are social, not race types, or with pacelines. It is a group where folks can start biking and grow in ability all while having fun, making new friends, and biking new places throughout Florida.

Riding the waterfront in St. Pete and Pass-A-Grille are favorites. One great ride with four distinct sections is Courtney Campbell Causeway to Bayshore, then Ream Wilson Trail, then on to Phillippe Park. Truly amazing and so varied. We live in paradise.

My personal goal for 2021 is to surpass my mileage of 6,511 in 2020 by at least a mile, continue to find and give free rides to blind stokers via the Blind Stokers Club on my tandem, and keep the rubber side down at all times! I am also contemplating becoming ride leader for Fuller Center Bike Adventure, including cross-country fundraising bike rides for the homeless. I also hope to once again spend a week riding with my nine grandchildren at a Delaware beach.

Ginger Regalado

Florida Department of Transportation District Seven

Bicyclist and Pedestrian Program Manager

Ginger Regalado is the Bicyclist and Pedestrian Program Manager for FDOT District Seven Traffic Operations. She works to develop and program projects that will enhance bicyclist and pedestrian safety throughout the District’s five counties (Citrus, Hernando, Hillsborough, Pasco, and Pinellas). Ginger also manages the BWTB Program along with other education and outreach programs. Prior to joining FDOT, Ginger was a social science teacher for the Hillsborough County School District and she worked for FDOT previously in the Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Department. Ginger has a Masters in the Art of Teaching. She loves cooking, spending time with her husband, children and grandson. Ginger also enjoys interacting with the community and helping them understand what they can do to better protect themselves while they are out and about walking or cycling. Ginger believes that education is a key aspect to our future. We must lay a strong foundation for all future generations to build upon for many reasons, but if we want safety to improve, evolve and prevail they must learn about it now.

Rodney Chatman

Forward Pinellas

Planning Division Manager

Rodney Chatman is the planning division manager for Forward Pinellas. In his spare time, he takes full advantage of the bicycling network he contributes to by day. “I try to commute to work by bike once a month when the weather is comfortable,” said Rodney. “It’s a 52-mile round trip so I am really blessed to work for an agency that supports alternative commuting and flexible work schedules.”

Rodney has always been very active throughout his life. He even earned a scholarship to play basketball for Eckerd College. After graduation, he continued to play basketball and lift weights. Rodney also started cycling casually; he bought a Trek 1000 so that he and his wife could ride the Pinellas Trail together. A basketball injury to his Achilles heel redefined activity level, however. “After I recovered, I went back to lifting weights at the gym and running on the treadmill, because it was something to do, but found that pretty boring and was never able to get into a good routine.” His eating habits also changed as his work responsibilities and family commitments increased and he found himself slowly gaining weight. “My ‘wake-up’ moment occurred a few years ago when one of my wife’s friends from college died of a sudden heart attack in his mid-40s. That tragedy really impacted me because I thought I was heading down the same road,” he shared. “I found that cycling was exactly what I was looking for and it even inspired me to drastically change my eating habits. I now am back down to the weight that I was in high school and my last physical exam was really good.” He has since purchased a Cannondale SuperSix Evo road bike and now strives to ride 100 to 130 miles each week.

“I feel that my quality of life has vastly improved by being able to bicycle along the many connected trails and bike lanes in the Tampa Bay region,” said Rodney. “Cycling allows me to live a healthier lifestyle, relieve stress, and enjoy the outdoors.”

Tina Russo

Metropolitan Planning Organization Planning and Development Department Pasco County

Active Transportation Planner

After briefly retiring to South Carolina, Tina Russo recently returned to her home state of Florida to serve as active transportation planner for Pasco County’s Metropolitan Planning Organization. Prior to her departure from Florida, Tina retired from Hillsborough County as a regional park coordinator where she spent most of her time developing the trail system within Hillsborough County. Tina previously served as president for the Florida Bicycle Association and has been a member of both the Hillsborough County and Pasco County BPACs.

She’s also a League of American Bicyclists league certified instructor (LCI). As an LCI, Tina has taught bicycle education to hundreds of people, from members of law enforcement to children at bicycle rodeo events. Tina has also coached the USA Disabled Cycling Team at two Paralympics events and at several international championship events.

Tina enjoys riding her bike on roadways, multi-use shared paths, and off-road trails. She has had the honor and privilege of riding in the Police Unity Tour and the Law Enforcement United Ruff Ride.

Paula Flores

Greenman-Pedersen, Inc.

Transportation Planning Practice Leader at GPI

Paula Flores started riding a bike as an adult back in 2010. At the time, she considered herself “a roadie, a comfortable rider, part of the elite one percent of bicyclists that do it for sport.” Over time, her priorities changed as she became aware of the many people in her community who are concerned riders because of a lack of safe streets. “As a professional transportation planner focusing on active transportation and safety, I’ve taken a slightly different path,” Paula explained. “I certainly enjoy riding… but now I prefer to ride as a commuter to truly experience the harsh reality of that experience. You learn so much when you put yourself in the shoes of those that depend on a bike for mobility.” Paula’s goal, as a professional, is to transform Tampa Bay’s streets so everyone can safely walk, bike, or ride safely.

“So, why do I ride? Because my job isn’t complete until our children can ride to school, our residents feel safe riding to parks, work, and play. In the meantime, we have a lot of work to do until we no longer experience fatalities and serious injuries on our streets.”

Heidi Ferraro


Heidi Ferraro is very passionate about helping others, especially kids, participate in fitness and the arts. One of Heidi’s mantras is to make a positive difference in this world by doing what you are passionate about. “I believe not only in the health benefits of fitness but also in the mind/body connection,” shared Heidi. “I saw the pride in my son’s face when he first learned how to ride a bike and how much he continues to enjoy riding regularly. Learning how to ride a bike is something that many neurotypical individuals inherently learn but those with special needs may need this skill broken down into additional steps in order to master it.” Heidi’s hope is that every child has the same opportunity to learn how to ride a bike and experiences the same sense of accomplishment as her son did. This hope, combined with her passion, has inspired her to help bring iCan Bike Camp to Tampa Bay this summer for the first time ever.

Heidi received her Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Florida State University. Prior to the birth of her son, Alexander, she worked in cash and treasury management at a local Tampa Bay company. When Alexander arrived, she became at stay at home mom, enabling her to pursue additional training in the therapies Alexander participated in to help him be the best he can be. She incorporates these therapy techniques into all aspects of his life. She has served as Alexander’s one-on-one aide in both school and camp settings prior to him now participating in these type of settings much more independently. “It’s been an amazing, fulfilling journey seeing him learn, grow, and make daily strides,” she said.

Heidi’s motto: “Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire.” —Jennifer Lee

Michelle Cyr


Florida Associate State Director for Community Outreach

Michelle Cyr is an AARP Florida Associate State Director for Community Outreach in Tampa Bay. As lead for AARP’s work in Tampa Bay, Michelle provides overall leadership in the recruitment and training of volunteer speakers, advocates, and ambassadors who provide education, advocacy and service in Pinellas, Pasco and Hillsborough Counties. In partnership with AARP Tampa Bay volunteers and community allies, Michelle works to connect the Bay area’s 50+ with information, resources, and local offerings aimed at engaging people where they live, helping them navigate their “what’s next” and discover real possibilities.

Michelle also works in collaboration with elected officials, business and community leaders to create Age Friendly Communities where people can safely and affordably live, work, learn and explore as they age. The AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities encourages states, cities, towns and rural areas to prepare for the rapid aging of the U.S. population by paying increased attention to the environmental, economic and social factors that influence the health and well-being of older adults. AARP Florida is pleased to have wonderful partners statewide to make the Sunshine State more age friendly to residents of all ages and abilities. Currently, there are 34 Age Friendly Communities and just this year Florida was designated an Age Friendly State.

Michelle has been an AARP employee for over 20 years. She is a native of Tampa Bay and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Eckerd College.

Cyndi Raskin


Director of Commuter Services

Cyndi Raskin is the Director of Commuter Services for the Tampa Bay Area Regional Transit Authority (TBARTA), where she plans, manages, and directs the team that helps commuters discover and switch to alternative commute options (carpool, vanpool, transit, bike, walk), and helps businesses develop commute option programs for their employees. “We need all forms of transportation to be safe for commuters. Bike riders and walkers are the most physically vulnerable, so we must do everything we can to improve their safety,” she says.

Before coming to TBARTA in March 2019, Cyndi served the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority for nearly 21 years with increasingly responsible roles in the marketing department, and the last four years as their Director of Communications and Marketing. In that role, she led a marketing team of seven staffers and was responsible for all aspects of marketing, communications, public relations, and branding for the agency.

Cyndi holds two Associates degrees, with honors, from St. Petersburg College, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Humanities and Literature from Eckerd College, where she graduated with distinction. She is the chair of the City of Dunedin Public Relations Advisory Action Committee, secretary of the City of Dunedin Parks & Recreation Advisory Committee, and a 2016 graduate of the prestigious Leadership Pinellas program. A Dunedin native, Cyndi has a long history of volunteerism including leadership roles with her daughter’s school PTA organizations, and as a Girl Scout troop leader.

Steven Cherpock

Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office


Steven Cherpock is a Corporal with the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office. He has worked for HCSO for over 12 years and is currently assigned to the District III Traffic Section, which covers areas that include Citrus Park, Town N Country, Odessa, and Carrollwood. The Traffic Section includes Motorcycle Deputies and Community Resource Deputies who handle various traffic complaints related to speeding, school zone violations and other traffic concerns. Corporal Cherpock has previously been involved with several safety grants to include the HVE (High Visibility Enforcement) Grant, Triple L (Listen, Learn, Live) Motorcycle Grant, and recently the Motorist Speed Reduction and Education campaign.
“I believe as Hillsborough County continues to grow we must all work together to make our roads safer for motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians.” Corporal Cherpock says, “Having the combination of representatives from enforcement, engineering, and educational groups is the key to improving the safety of our roadways.”

George Edmiston

Transportation Safety Consultant

George Edmiston has been a Sergeant with the Largo Police Department for 30 years and is preparing to retire from this role in October 2019. During 2019, Sgt. Edmiston also began presenting Driver’s Education classes in Pinellas and Hillsborough County Schools as part of the Teen Traffic Safety Education program, a unique approach developed by FDOT District Seven which has been provided to high schools for several years. He recently started working alongside the Center for Urban Transportation Research team at the University of South Florida to continue the Teen Traffic Safety Education program into the future.

Mahshid Arasteh

American Quality Consultants, LLC

Transportation Planner

Mahshid Arasteh, PE, is the principal of American Quality Consultants, LLC (AQC). Ms. Arasteh has 40 years of experience in engineering and holds two master’s degrees in civil/structural and mechanical engineering from University of Pennsylvania. She serves as the safety ambassador to Pinellas and Hillsborough Counties for Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) District Seven. She is a board member and past president of Florida Engineering Society (FES) Pinellas and has been the recipient of several awards, including FES Engineer of the Year, FES Distinguished Engineer in Technology, FDOT Davis Productivity Award of Distinction, the Florida Professional Engineers in Government Professional Development Award and has received project awards from Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council and American Public Works Association. She also won USA Communicator’s award for producing and hosting “Works in Progress,” a local TV show featuring public works projects in Clearwater.

Prior to starting AQC, she held highly responsible state, county, and municipal positions for 22 years. These include serving as director of transportation for Pinellas County, public works administrator and city engineer for City of Clearwater, and assistant district drainage engineer and Project Development and Environment project manager for FDOT.

She has been married to her husband, Abdi, for 38 years. Their sons, Cameron and Keon, are also aspiring engineers. Ms. Arasteh is active in her community and participates in many fundraisers and marathons for charitable causes.

American Quality Consultants, LLC of Safety Harbor was founded in 2009. AQC is a minority women-owned business that provides local government with high-quality project management, planning, and design and construction phase support with roadways traffic control, intelligent transportation systems, drainage, and utilities. AQC’s staff is also experienced in feasibility, grant funding application assistance and Community involvement and coordination.

Kyle Simpson

City of St. Petersburg

Transportation Planner

As a Transportation Planner with the City of St. Petersburg, Kyle Simpson works on a variety of transit, bicycle, and pedestrian projects. Since St. Petersburg is a built-out city, the majority of his work is on projects such as development of the Central Avenue Bus Rapid Transit project, which would be the first premium transit service in Tampa Bay, and the Complete Streets Implementation Plan, which would create a series of low-stress, family-friendly bicycle routes all across the city. What Kyle loves most about his job is working with the community to create a transportation system that puts people first and allows them to rediscover and experience their city in a way that is only possible when walking or biking.

Kyle’s favorite bicycle and walking events are those that allow people to experience the city outside of an automobile. One event he would like to see happen in Tampa Bay someday is a “Slow Roll,” a bicycle ride started in Detroit as part block party, part bike ride, with a focus on bringing the community together around bicycling. The ride pace never goes above 10 mph, which serves to make the ride accessible to people of all ages and abilities. He had the opportunity to participate in Slow Roll Buffalo (NY). “It was a powerful experience biking with that many people across a variety of neighborhoods and roadways,” Kyle reminisced.

Kyle started bicycling in his teens when his cousin talked him into going on a Teen Treks trip, a program that operates bicycle tours for middle and high school students. On his first trip, he was introduced to the geographic feature called “mountains,” which were quite a bit longer than the bridge over the interstate in Cocoa, FL. After that first trip from Albany, NY to Provincetown, MA he attained a fervor for bike touring and went on to bike across the United States in 2010 and across 11 countries in Europe in 2015 after graduate school. It was the trips he did as a teenager that led him to the Urban Planning field. Kyle said, “I’ve never looked back.”

Ric Hartman

City of Clearwater

Senior Transportation Planner

Richard Hartman (Ric) is a Senior Transportation Planner at the City of Clearwater. Ric arrives at the city after working on pedestrian, bicyclist, and transit safety issues as a Research Associate at the Center for Urban Transportation Research at the University of South Florida, where he worked on FDOT’s Strategic Safety Initiative and the WalkWise safety education and research programs. He also taught urban planning and geography courses at USF. Ric previously worked for over ten years in city planning where he participated as a member of MPO advisory committees for several jurisdictions. He is a certified city planner (AICP), accredited by the Congress for the New Urbanism, and certified by the League of American Cyclists as a Cycling Instructor. His passion is to build healthy communities that provide access for all people.

Deborah Sickmon

Safe Kids Greater Tampa

Coalition Coordinator

Deborah Sickmon serves as the Safe Kids Greater Tampa Coalition Coordinator with St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital (SJCH). For 13 years, she has worked as a safety and wellness educator for the hospital, focusing on injury and illness prevention education throughout Hillsborough County and beyond.

Deborah has also played an integral role in the Safe Routes to School program. She has trained elementary and middle school physical education teachers on bicycle safety topics and has assisted with bike clinics during classes. Through her efforts, more than 12,500 students have received hands-on experiential education on bike and pedestrian safety topics. The Safe Kids Greater Tampa Coalition also supports International Walk to School Day each October and Bike to School Day each Spring by partnering with schools throughout Hillsborough County.

“Teaching children of all ages ways to keep themselves safe while walking or riding their bike or scooter in their neighborhood is very important,” said Deborah. “Many concepts seem simplistic, such as wearing a bike helmet, looking both ways before crossing the street, crossing at crosswalks, and putting away distractions while crossing. However, as adults, many of us forget to follow our own advice. We should make an ongoing effort to model the behaviors we want our kids to imitate in order to keep themselves safe.”

Deborah is a certified Child Passenger Safety Technician and Instructor, an American Heart Association First Aid and CPR Basic Life Support Instructor, and she leads the adolescent education team, providing classroom education on numerous topics from hand washing and safe baby to puberty education and nutrition. Prior to working at SJCH, Deborah was a science teacher in both public and private school sectors for a combined 14 years in Tampa.

Michael Maurino

Westshore Alliance

Director of Transportation and Planning

Michael Maurino is the Director of Transportation and Planning for the Westshore Alliance. He has more than a decade of experience in government relations and advocating for transportation policies and projects.

As Director of Transportation and Planning, Michael focuses on improving mobility options within and to Tampa’s Westshore District. Michael started working on transportation issues as a volunteer on the 2010 Hillsborough transportation referendum. He has advocated for better roads, safer pedestrian access, and more transit options in policy positions with the Tampa Bay Partnership, Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce, and United Way Suncoast.

Michael serves on the Hillsborough County City-County Planning Commission as a City of Tampa appointee. He holds degrees in Political Science and Telecommunication-News from the University of Florida. His goal is to be able to walk to a train station near his house in Port Tampa City with his wife and daughter.

Michael Case

Tampa Bay Area Regional Transit Authority (TBARTA)

Principal Planner and Project Manager

Michael Case is the Principal Planner and Project Manager at the Tampa Bay Area Regional Transit Authority (TBARTA). He oversees all departments, projects, and budgets of the Authority, including the operation and administration of the Transportation Demand Management-focused Commuter Assistance Program within the Florida Department of Transportation, District Seven, which includes Citrus, Hernando, Pasco, Pinellas, and Hillsborough counties.

In addition to managing the operations of the Authority, Michael serves as a voting member of the Metropolitan Planning Organization Technical Advisory Committees of Pasco, Hernando-Citrus, and Hillsborough counties. As a committee member, he is able to bring a regional perspective to the development and delivery of county-based transportation products and services, as well as help coordinate efforts across counties where needed. He also serves as an alternate advisory member to the Tampa Bay Transportation Management Area Leadership Group and works closely with area legislators to advise on planning-related issues and to develop policies that further the efforts of cross-county transit and transportation services.

Prior to TBARTA, Michael worked in economic development and small business assistance with the University of South Florida (USF) Research Foundation and has conducted on-site sponsored research on native-based public participation strategies in Alice Springs, Australia. He has a B.A. in Organizational Communication from the University of Michigan, a M.A. Degree in Urban and Regional Planning from USF, and specializes in bringing an interdisciplinary approach to transportation planning by combining economic development, engineering, land use, and social marketing. He has also served as a touring and recording musician with several national artists.

Erica Nelson

University Area Community Development Corporation

Contract and Grants Coordinator

Erica Nelson is a Contract and Grant Coordinator at the University Area Community Development Corporation (UACDC) who also manages the Bicycle Friendly Business activities in addition to serving as the “Try Transit” Employee Ambassador. She works with partners and community members to foster relationships and advocate for pedestrian and bicycle safety in the University Area.

Prior to joining the UACDC, Erica worked at the Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR) on the ITS, Traffic Operations and Safety program. She assisted with managing pedestrian and bicycle grants in addition to naturalistic driving studies, motorcycle safety, and wrong way driving research. She mainly worked on the Alert Today Florida campaign that founded the Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Coalition to advance the purpose of Florida’s Pedestrian and Bicycle Strategic Safety Plan (PBSSP).

Erica was born and raised in Tampa, Florida where she also completed her Master’s in Public Administration with a certificate in Nonprofit Management at the University of South Florida. She is passionate about people, safety, health, and community. In her spare time, she teaches yoga and meditation classes to assist others in living a happy, healthy lifestyle.

Peter Hsu

Florida Department of Transportation

Traffic Safety Engineer

As the Traffic Safety Engineer for District Seven of the Florida Department of Transportation, Peter oversees many projects that help make the roads in the region safer for pedestrians, bicyclists and drivers. His work recently earned him a “Bob the Builder” award from the Pasco County Metropolitan Planning Organization. Craig Casper of the Pasco County MPO said of Peter, “Peter’s name is ubiquitous with championing safety projects here. He is known as a collaborator with a focus on implementing projects that bring crash rates down.”

Adam White

University of Tampa

Data Analyst

Originally hailing from Warrington, England, Adam White came to the United States in 2015 to earn his MBA from the University of Tampa (UT). He is currently a Data Analyst at the Academic Success Center at UT, and formerly worked in Commuter Services at UT’s Office of Student Transition and Persistence. Adam frequently bikes to work or takes the HART bus. He also recently became a League Cycling Instructor certified by the League of American Bicyclists.

“I bicycle because it allows me to engage with the communities I ride through.” Adam says. “I can speak to and get to know the people on my route that I wouldn’t if I were driving. Through this, bicycling keeps me healthy in body and mind. I wanted to become an LCI, because bike safety is crucial not only for me, but for all road users.”

Chad Hill

USF Police Department


Chad Hill is a Corporal for the University of South Florida Police Department. He has worked for USF for over 10 years and is currently assigned to the Strategic Enforcement Section (SES). While in this assignment he is tasked with supervising the USFPD bike squad. The bike squad is responsible for high visibility police bicycle patrols in densely traveled areas where cars cannot reach. SES is responsible for bicycle and pedestrian education/enforcement, and participates in University area community bicycle events.
Corporal Hill is a part of the Hillsborough Community Traffic Safety Team and actively participates in safety initiatives in the University area, including partnering with the Center for Urban Transportation (CUTR). He is a League Cycling Instructor certified by the League of American Bicyclist.

Tiffany Sabiel

Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital

Safe Routes to School Supervisor

Tiffany Sabiel is the Safe Routes to School Supervisor for Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg, FL, where she has worked for the past eight years, to educate children and parents on lifelong bicycling and pedestrian safety skills through school and community events, while also encouraging a more active lifestyle by walking and biking to school.

Her certifications include League of American Bicyclists Cycling Instructor (LCI), Certified Regional Bicycle Helmet Trainer, Regional Trainer for Florida Traffic Bicycle Safety Education and Certified Car Seat Technician. She received her Bachelors of Arts in History from the University of South Florida. In 2016 she won the annual 2016 Educator of the year award from the Florida Bicycle Association.

Mara Latorre

City of Plant City


Mara Latorre is both a visual artist and urban planner in the Tampa Bay Area. In 2011, she received her bachelor’s degree in Sociology, with an emphasis in Urban Studies, from the University of South Florida. Latorre had her first exposure to affordable housing programming during her duration with the University Area Community Development Corporation (UACDC), from 2011-2014. During her time with Prodigy Cultural Arts, a youth based arts enrichment program of the UACDC, she was able to help connect parents and community members to affordable housing programming offered with the organization. Other initiatives Mara has worked on was her coordination of “Arts Rise! North Tampa’s Festival of the Arts” (2013), and serving as a planning committee member for “Lights on Tampa” (2015). When she is ‘off the clock,’ she is the facilitator of “art jams,” which are organic, community-based spaces that help to connect people through collaborative arts projects.
Mara is a passionate resident of Hillsborough County, Florida. In 2016, she received her Master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning, and Certificate of Community Real Estate Development from the University of South Florida. Since then, she serves as a Planner for the City of Plant City’s Planning & Zoning Division. Latorre is also a City of Plant City representative for the MPO’s Bicycle Pedestrian Advisory Committee, and proudly facilitated Plant City’s Inaugural Bike with the Mayor Ride with Mayor Rick Lott this past March, with support from the Bike/Walk Tampa Bay Coalition. Aside from biking around small Florida towns, her lifelong calling is to help bridge the public to visual, written, and performing arts opportunities by implementing and supporting effective community planning and inclusive economic development opportunities within the public realm.

Gena Torres

Hillsborough MPO

Executive Planner

Gena Torres is an Executive Planner with the Hillsborough Metropolitan Planning Organization. After graduating from the University of South Florida, she has spent the past 30 years working to make the streets of Tampa and surrounding communities safer. Tackling the challenge of turning around one of the most notoriously high crash counties has included conducting in-depth analysis of crashes, managing localized studies of high crash corridors, bringing the issues to the attention of elected officials, capitalizing on opportunities to make change, and engaging citizens before, during and after the process. Gena has particular interest in the transit, walking, and bicycle dependent communities who are most affected by our transportation decisions. Gena strives to cycle or take transit to work at least 5 times each month. She is also a proud mother, grandmother and avid softball player!

Alex Henry

Florida Department of Transportation, District 7

Bicycle Pedestrian Safety Specialist

Alex Henry is the Bicycle/Pedestrian Safety Specialist for FDOT District Seven. He works to develop and program projects to enhance bicycle and pedestrian safety in the Tampa Bay Region and manages the district’s education and encouragement programs.

Prior to joining FDOT, Alex worked at the Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR), managing education and enforcement programs in support of the Florida Pedestrian and Bicycle Strategic Safety Plan.

Alex is a 4th generation Floridian and is currently pursuing a Masters in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of South Florida. His professional interests include promoting safe, equitable, and healthy communities through active transportation planning and context sensitive design.

Becky Afonso

Florida Bicycle Association

Executive Director

Becky Afonso, Executive Director of the Florida Bicycle Association (FBA), is a native Floridian from the Tampa Bay area who has favored bicycle commuting since her grade school days. Her interest in road and off-road riding evolved in the late 1990s, becoming a member of the Suwannee Bicycle Association, SWAMP and a charter member of the Suncoast Cycling Club. She served on each club’s board and held additional leadership roles.

She has over 20 years of cycling experience in project management, route logistics, event directing and marketing from positions at Bike Wisconsin, Bike MS Breakaway to the Keys and Bike Florida. Her certifications include League of American Bicyclists Cycling Instructor (LCI), certified bicycle helmet fitter and graduate of CyclingSavvy. Upon becoming executive director of FBA, Becky vowed to join FBA member bicycle clubs and is now a member of over 30 Florida bicycle clubs.

In addition to being a Florida Senate appointed and current vice-chair to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Florida Greenways and Trails Council, she is the vice-chair of the Forward Pinellas Bicycle & Pedestrian Advisory Committee and chair of the Bicycle/Pedestrian Safety committee of the Florida Suncoast SAFE KIDS Coalition (Pinellas Council). Becky’s position at FBA keeps her busy with education and advocacy across the state to ensure the safety of all Florida bicyclists.

Lucas Cruse

City of St. Petersburg

Bicycle Pedestrian Coordinator,

Lucas Cruse is the Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator for the City of St. Petersburg. He is a certified planner from the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP), a League Cycling Instructor, as well as a Cycling Savvy Instructor. He received his Bachelors in Civil Engineering and his Masters in Urban & Regional Planning from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign.

He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering. He is the father of twin girls.

William Porth

Chair, Hillsborough CTST

Traffic Studies and Safety Coordinator, City of Tampa

William Porth is a traffic safety advocate with the City of Tampa. His career began in 1993 and in 2001 he began to oversee the City’s Traffic Calming Program as Traffic Studies and Safety Coordinator.

Porth chairs the Community Traffic Safety Team for the FDOT’s educational component of traffic safety, and is a Vision Zero Team Member for the Hillsborough County MPO. Porth works with City Design and Planning staff to implement the Complete Streets Project, is a Bike/Walk Tampa Bay coalition member representing the CTST for Hillsborough County, and a League Cycling Instructor certified by the League of American Bicyclists.

Marc Hanger

Chair, Pinellas CTST

Transportation Planning Analyst, Forward Pinellas

Marc D. Hanger has worked in Pinellas County government for 25 years. He is currently the Staff Transportation Analyst for the county’s Metropolitan Planning Organization, Forward Pinellas. Marc is the “go to person” for transportation data, which he collects, compiles, measures, and maintains.
Marc also brings his skills to other groups he is involved with such as Bike/Walk Tampa Bay and the Pinellas Community Traffic Safety Team, groups he supports because they work to improve quality of life in Tampa Bay. He is currently excited about expansion of the Pinellas Trail, which is planned for construction close to his home in the walkable community of Countryside.