2013 NWTA Board of Directors Candidate Biographies

The following entries include short bio's from th people running for the 2013 NWTA Board...take a look and learn all about them!

Tyler Bump

Howdy. My name is Tyler Bump and I am a City Planner by day and a singlespeeder by night (and on the weekends). Please do not hold either one of these against me.

Much like many of you, my passion for mountain biking started early. I grew up in Colorado and started building my first jumps and breaking my first bones on a mountain bike around age eight. Ever since I was young, mountain biking has been an outlet for me. My bike and the trail has enabled me to connect with myself and with nature in a way that I am grateful for from the very first pedal stroke of every ride. The reasons we ride are as diverse as the mountain bike community itself and I feel lucky to have shared so many great experiences with others on my bike over the years. Mountain biking continues to be an integral part of my life and my interest in serving on the Board of Directors comes from wanting to give back to the sport, the community and the trails that have given me so much. It is my intention to do as much as I can to increase options for mountain biking in our region for EVERYONE so that as many people as possible have the option to enjoy nature on two wheels and recreate in this beautiful place we call home.

My professional background in advocacy and public policy makes me an ideal candidate to advance the mission and goals of the NWTA. I have been deeply involved in many planning efforts over my career, including trails, transportation and open space planning, and I can bring my knowledge of these processes to the NWTA. Advocacy is inherently a political process and my communication and relationship building skills can help advance the missions and goals of the NWTA. Additionally, as the efforts of the NWTA have been so successful in the past at increasing access to mountain biking options in the region, it is becoming more important than ever to grow the already active volunteer base to help maintain the access that we already have. Conservation and maintenance of existing and future trail access is key to maintaining a positive reputation in the community and I believe that there are significant opportunities to expand the volunteer base of the organization. I look forward to helping out the NWTA however I can in the future whether that be on the Board of Directors or as an active member. See you on the trail!


Kelsey Cardwell
As a mountain bike enthusiast and online movement builder, I am writing with keen interest in a Northwest Trail Alliance board position. Over the past eight months, your projects and partnerships have impressed me, and I could not think of a better way to put my background and passion to good use.
Currently, I work as the marketing coordinator at Stand for Children, an education advocacy nonprofit that similarly relies on member support to drive change. My primary responsibilities include email list building, petition creation, social media management and HTML email creation.
I would love to join the board and help work towards a Portland enriched by and known for its mountain biking. I grew up in the Seattle area, went to school in Washington D.C. and returned to the west coast seeking a closer connection to the mountainous Pacific Northwest. I have a competitive swimming background, but immediately fell in love with mountain biking for its rigor and alluring culture. I truly believe it is the best way to enjoy this region and everyone else should too!
I am eager to help Northwest Trail Alliance build their membership and the region’s mileage of trails in all ways possible, particularly in a board role.


Lee Duncan

My name is Lee Duncan, and I have been an NWTA/PUMP member for about 8 years now, and I would like to contribute to the value of our great club by serving on the Board of Directors. I currently direct Bike Patrol activities for NWTA, and I would like to see NWTA better leverage this great PR tool which is the Bike Patrol. In addition, I would like to ensure NWTA continues it's valuable focus on trying to open up Forest Park, where again the Bike Patrol could be useful.  Lastly, I feel my experience on the Boards of several bike clubs and working with IMBA may help NWTA continue to become the Bike Club we all want and need.

Rob Helms

Award-winning environmental service professional, recognized as valued member of the recreational and outdoor community. Skilled at fostering and maintaining strong relationships with people and community partners.

Known for leadership skills and the ability to effectively influence businesses and individuals to steward public lands.

Core competencies include:
Sales & Marketing,  Business Relationships, Public Speaking Non Profit Management &Leadership, Sales

Volunteer for numerous non-profit organizations, cycling clubs, and park agencies including California State Parks, Sonoma County Regional Parks, BikeMonkey, LandPaths, Velostreet, Stewards of the Coast and Redwoods, Sonoma Land Trust.

Joe Rykowski

Joe Rykowski has helped establish not one but TWO trail care non-profit 501(c)(3) organizations in Oregon.  In 2004, Black Rock Mountain Bike Association in Salem focused on build out and maintenance of the Black Rock Mountain Bike Area.  In 2007, he relocated to Hillsboro and was a founding member of the Westside Trail Federation focused on planning a Downhill-specific mountain bike system in Tillamook State Forest (Oregon Department of Forest shelved the project but there's talk of including in upcoming recreation plan!) and establishing a Freeride skill area in Stub Stewart State Park.   Since 2008, he has been driving force behind build out of the XC/AM bike specific trails at Stub State Park.   Tackled the grant application process and landed NWTA a singletrack trail machine (ST240) and equipment plus startup of the Trail Development Partnership Program within organization.  In 2012, took steps to move forward with entering into adopt-a-trail agreement for maintenance and revitalization of the Hagg Lake trail AND joined the new NWTA bike patrol just for grins.

He gets stuff done.  A "jack of all trades" and is fully steeped in the ways of trail stewardship at grassroots level.   The logical next step for Joe would be taking on the role of Trail Care Director with Northwest Trail Alliance.  Either that, or perhaps riding his bike once in a while to remember what it was like...

Michael Whitesel
Michael has served a full term on the Board as Treasurer.  During this time Michael also co-founded and launched the Lumberyard Indoor bike park (http://LumberyardMTB.com), which opened to the public in May of 2012.  He earned his MBA from Portland State University in 2000. Michael first discovered mountain biking while attending the University of Oregon in the late 80’s.  His favorite trails to ride are those at the Sandy Ridge trail system.

Jon Pheanis
The Board of Directors is the primary caretaker of the Northwest Trail Alliance and it’s been my honor serving on the board for the last two years and as president this last year.I am running for another term to continue to fulfill our mission and to ensure that your investment in NWTA—whether in labor, money or both—makes a big difference.
Since my term on the board we have seen our organization grow to new heights and we are beginning to see the rewards of our hard work. We have created successful partnerships with public agencies and private land owners alike, and have implemented several initiatives to introduce youth to our sport. We have increased our credibility through new and innovative projects and programs that bring mountain biking where it never existed before. And this last year, we developed a plan for the future which will help guide our decision making and stewardship of our budget.
But we still have a lot of work to do. We need to advocate for more access to “ride to where we ride” and we need to promote our sport to receive the recognition we deserve. Above all else, we will need a strong Board of Directors to carefully guide the organization as we begin to experience increasing demands, expectations and commitments.
Thanks for your support, and here’s to the continued success of NWTA!