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Bicycle Colorado was excited to support a League Cycling Instructor Equity Scholarship seminar held November 5-7, 2021. Five outstanding candidates from across Colorado undertook extensive bicycle education training that included crafting engaging presentations and learning how to safely lead group rides out on the road. We can’t wait to see where they take their new-found knowledge and skills! Special thanks to the League of American Bicyclists and supporting sponsors QBP, Big Ring Cycles (which closed its doors in September 2021) and USA Cycling.
While it does not take a formal certification to be a leader in bicycle education, the League Cycling Instructor certification process gives educators deep knowledge and skills through a prerequisite Smart Cycling course and, through the LCI Seminar, prepares them to be an engaging teacher, safe instructor and to market their own bicycle education programs.
Benefits of becoming an LCI include:
Visit the League of American Bicyclists’ blog to hear from LCIs about their experiences teaching and how the LCI certification has benefitted them, plus to learn more about the Smart Cycling program.
Through this Equity Scholarship, Quality Bicycle Products (QBP), the League of American Bicyclists and Bicycle Colorado are partnering to cover the cost of Seminar registration ($500) and the first year of membership to the League of American Bicyclists ($45) for up to 10 Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) bicyclists who live in Colorado where QBP is based. Bicycle Colorado can also provide paid opportunities at our educator rate and/or support LCIs in finding opportunities toward their 12 hours of required annual instruction or continuing education to maintain their LCI certification.
We recognize the systemic barriers that have limited and continue to limit opportunities for BIPOC individuals to safely and enjoyably ride a bike. Access to bikes and bike shops, safe infrastructure, adult mentors who ride, stigma around riding a bike and racial profiling in public spaces are all factors that have led to the marginalization and disproportionate representation of BIPOC communities in bicycling.
There are also many leaders in bicycling to acknowledge and celebrate who have overcome and are challenging these barriers as well as people who are eager to grow their leadership in bicycling to impact others. We hope that the LCI certification will help people maximize their opportunities and impact as a bike educator, model leadership of color in bicycling and inspire others in their communities by challenging misconceptions of who rides a bike. Through this scholarship opportunity, we hope to help build a more inclusive culture for anyone who rides or wants to ride a bike.
Note that certification is not guaranteed by attendance at sessions and is dependent on performance during the Smart Cycling course and the Seminar. We want all of our awardees to be successful in completing their LCI certification. We provide guidance in the Eligibility section below on bicycle knowledge and riding skills expected of applicants and will support those who need some additional coaching.
Bicycle Colorado values inclusion and curiosity—proactively engaging people of diverse identities, backgrounds and perspectives while being active listeners who are open-minded, eager to improve and learn. As administrators of this scholarship, Smart Cycling facilitators and “site facilitators” during the Seminar, it is our responsibility to create a safe and welcoming space for all during the LCI activities. We look forward to holding ourselves accountable to our commitment to racial justice and listening to and learning from our awardees to inform all of the work we do at Bicycle Colorado.
We value and seek purposeful long-term partnerships, to work with organizations and communities to make a positive impact and connect others so they can form valued partnerships as well.
We take a stand on issues important to people who ride bikes, and do so with humility.
We take risks to discover new and creative ways to accomplish our goals, even when confronted with unforeseen challenges.
We are curious, open-minded, active listeners, eager to improve and willing to learn.
We use our skill and passion to ensure all people on bikes are treated equitably in Colorado.
We are transparent, honest and do what we say.
We value and proactively engage people of diverse backgrounds and perspectives, and we act with kindness and respect.
We are thrilled to welcome LCI Coach Neil Walker to the Denver area to facilitate the November Seminar and support our awardees.
Neil was born and raised in Pittsburgh. He has been League Cycling Coach since 2013 and has worked extensively in educating both youth and adults, working in Minnesota, North Carolina, Pittsburgh and Detroit. Walker spent 17 years as the education coordinator for BRAG Dream Team (Bicycle Race Across Georgia).
In 2010, Walker created a company, Cycles and Change, to increase bicycle education and to bring change in communities of color and low-income areas. He is the recipient of the 2011 Community Service Award from the National Brotherhood of Cyclists, where he also serves as Education Director.
Walker is one of the founding members of the Equity Advisory Council, a group of advocates from various programs across the country, looking to bring equity and social justice to cycling. In 2016, Walker was named the League of American Bicyclists’ Instructor of the Year.