On November 12, 2018, as the first day of wildfire smoke blanketed the Bay, I lost my friend and former colleague, Rachel Davidman. I'm lifting up Rachel's memory by helping resurrect the TransForm Carbon CrushersCalifornia Climate Ride team Rachel formed in 2013. Funds raised during the June 12-16 ride from Santa Cruz-San Louis Obispo, CA ride will support TransForm, where Rachel spent eight years as Alameda County's visionary Safe Routes to Schools Education Program Director.
Without Rachel I probably wouldn't be in California. Rachel’s talent, dedication, creativity and technical ability to write, produce, dance, fundraise, craft, learn a language, or create almost anything she set her mind to had an outsized impact on me. With about 45 minutes notice, she choreographed a simplified version of the dance to a song I wrote called “The Ped Safety Dance” that was performed as part of a flash mob at the 2011 Safe Routes to School National Conference. (Shoutouts to the kids from Living Arts Dance Studio in Detroit!)
The success of this event, mainly thanks to Rachel's ability to [literally] think fast on her feet to move the crowd, opened the door for a career move from Michigan to California, where I currently coordinate The City of Palo Alto's Safe Routes to School Program through the Office of Transportation.
I'm asking for a donation that supports the fierce purpose and joy that guided Rachel's passion for the planet and for Safe Routes to Schools. We must generate visionary solutions to combat the triple threat of insufficient affordable housing, unsustainable consumption and traffic that impacts communities across the planet. If we do not, continued tragedies, including the wildfires that physically and psychologically impacted Bay Area residents over the last few years, will only worsen. My brother, who lived less than 1/4 mile from the 2017 Santa Rosa wildfire line and narrowly missed losing everything, was also among those impacted by the wildfires.
Above all, I'm riding for my son Jonathan, so that he may “Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, and drink the wild air.” -Emerson. As one of the youngest participants in the 1992 Rio de Janeiro Earth Summit, a lifelong commitment to addressing climate change was cemented early in my life. The protest sign that 14 year-old me is holding up in the Time Magazine photo on the far left says "The future is yours, the decision is ours, we don't accept it.
Fast forward 25 years and I'm still committed to raising awareness about climate change. Your generous donation is an investment in a healthier, safer future, and will help Climate Ride make this future a reality. You can make a secure online donation today by clicking on the 'Support Me' button. You'll automatically receive an acknowledgment and I will be notified by email of your support.
Thank you for considering supporting TransForm's policy and program efforts. I can think of no better cause to honor my former colleague, and to honor the survival of this incredible blue marble we live on.