Advocacy Boot Camp

Saturday, December 17, 2016 at 08:00 AM


MassBike is assembling leaders in statewide transportation policy for a daylong forum on bicycle advocacy. Learn about ways federal, state and local programs can be woven into any community's desire to become more bike friendly. MassBike will host 4 sessions with today's leaders in transportation policy, topics and presenters are listed below.

Event Schedule

8 a.m. Registration Opens

9 a.m. Opening Remarks

Richard Fries, Executive Director, Mass Bike

9:30-10:30 a.m. Session 1

Bikes and Beacon Hill: Making Lawmakers Your Allies

Changing state law can be frustrating and confusing. But this process is crucial to improving laws for bike riders. This session will focus on ways to turn your lawmakers into critical allies to improve your town’s streetscape.


Erica Mattison, Legislative Director, Environmental League of Massachusetts

10:45-11:45 a.m. Session 2  

Don’t Tell ‘Em, Show ‘Em: Using Strava Metro, GPS and GIS  

The advent of Strava to create “Heat Maps” has completely altered the minds of transportation officials. The latest chapter in this innovative technology can be used in your community to showcase demand for improved bike facilities.


Brian Devaney, Project Director, Strava Metro

12 noon-1 p.m. Lunch Session

Dining With the Enemy: Effective Engagement of Opposition

Despite all the proven economic, environmental and public health benefits of bicycle facilities, these projects spark emotional and often ugly opposition movements that tear communities apart. One man has proven highly effective in dissolving this rage through quiet, calm and steady engagement.  

Guest Speaker:

Craig Della Penna, Executive Director, Northeast Greenway Solutions

1:15-2:15 p.m. Session 3

Alphabet Soup: De-coding Local, Regional, State and Federal Agencies

Transportation policy is a Byzantine arrangement of organizations that often overlap. Sifting through all the acronyms alone - MPO, RPA, TIP, etc. - can dissuade the most stalwart bike advocates from their missions. These panelists will help advocates de-tangle the barbed wire of the bureaucracy.


Peter Sutton, MassDOT Bike/Ped Coordinator


Eric Papetti, Federal Transit Administration

Paul Chenard, Old Colony Regional Planning Council

John Pelletier, Newton Bike-Ped Advisory Group

2:30-3:30 p.m. Session 4

Starting from Scratch: Getting Your Community Going

Too often communities that that need bikes the most have almost no established local advocacy group. Whether looking to establish or improve your local advocacy movement, these panelists can help supercharge your efforts.


Sean Condon, MassBike Pioneer Valley Chapter


Bonne DeSousa, SouthCoast Bikeway Alliance

Vivian Ortiz, Mattapan Food and Fitness Coalition

Stephen Winslow, Bike to the Sea 

4:00 p.m. Happy Hour Forum

What the 2016 Election Means to Federal Bike Policy  

While the presidential race received most of the media attention, Congressional elections also took place. Those elections could have a huge impact on bicycle policy nationwide. This informal presentation will provide ample time for Q and A from the nation’s leading expert on federal bike policy.

Caron Whitaker, Vice President, Government Relations, League of American Bicyclists