New Executive Director Sought for Safe Routes to School National Partnership

New Executive Director Sought for Safe Routes to School National Partnership

The Safe Routes to School National Partnership is seeking a new Executive Director to provide leadership, strategic vision and direction to fulfill the National Partnership's mission and vision and take the organization to the next level of growth, development and impact. 

New Report: How States are Adapting to Transportation Alternatives Program

National Partnership Releases New Report on How States are Adapting to Transportation Alternatives Program

Since 2005, federal transportation funds have been available for Safe Routes to School projects across the nation, helping to ensure children can walk and bicycle safely to and from school. In 2012, Congress consolidated the federal Safe Routes to School program into the Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP), and made a number of changes to how those funds are awarded to states. A new report by the Safe Routes to School National Partnership examines how different states have adapted to those changes and how they are impacting the availability of Safe Routes to School funds. For the report, the National Partnership conducted interviews with 10 state department of transportation Safe Routes to School coordinators to gather information about their TAP implementation decisions are affecting Safe Routes to School funding.

While changes under the new law are still being implemented by state departments of transportation, this analysis examines trends in reduced funding for Safe Routes to School, the impact of federal matching requirements on low income communities, and best practices for states to sustain Safe Routes to School programs under the Transportation Alternatives Program.

New Informational Brief on Funding Match Requirements

Contact:

Margo Pedroso
Deputy Director, Safe Routes to School National Partnership
margo@saferoutespartnship.org
301-292-1043

Lauren Marchetti
Director, National Center for Safe Routes to School
Marchetti@claire.hsrc.un.cedu
919-962-7412

In 2012, the Map-21 transportation legislation made changes to the Federal Safe Routes to School program that added a required state or local match of up to 20 percent of project costs. These changes introduced new challenges in funding Safe Routes to School projects, and could be particularly hard for many small, rural, and urban low-income communities.

Through interviews conducted with 7 Safe Routes to School coordinators and in-depth profiles from California, Florida, New Jersey, and Ohio, this informational brief examines the changes in law, the need for Safe Routes to School projects in disadvantaged communities, and how some states are using creative approaches to supply the match. 

The Safe Routes to School National Partnership is a nonprofit organization that improves the quality of life for kids and communities by promoting active, healthy lifestyles and safe infrastructure that supports bicycling and walking. We advance policy change; catalyze support for safe, active and healthy communities with a network of more than 700 partner organizations; and share our deep expertise at national, state and local levels with those who are helping to propel our mission forward. Founded in 2005, the Safe Routes to School National Partnership’s mission is to advance safe walking and bicycling to and from schools, and in daily life, to improve the health and well-being of America’s children and to foster the creation of livable, sustainable communities.

The National Center for Safe Routes to School assists communities in enabling and encouraging children to safely walk and bicycle to school. The Center strives to equip Safe Routes to School programs with the knowledge and technical information to implement safe and successful strategies. The National Center for Safe Routes to School is maintained by the University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center with funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration.

National Partnership Founder Deb Hubsmith Steps Down as Director

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                    

CONTACT:

Margo Pedroso, Deputy Director, Safe Routes to School National Partnership
301-292-1043
margo@saferoutespartnership.org

National Partnership Founder Deb Hubsmith Steps Down as Director
Applauding her leadership and recovery as she remains involved as advisor and board member 

Deb HubsmithOakland, CA (September 8, 2014) – The Safe Routes to School National Partnership today announced a change in its organizational leadership. Founder Deb Hubsmith, who guided the National Partnership from inception nearly 10 years ago, will not be returning as executive director.

Hubsmith has been on medical leave since last fall to heal from acute myeloid leukemia; after months of treatments her recent biopsy showed no trace of leukemia. She is home recovering and, to focus on her health, has decided to decrease her future work hours to part-time. Hubsmith will continue to support the National Partnership as a board member and begin a new role as a strategic advisor in 2015.

“I still have the same passion for advancing Safe Routes to School,” Hubsmith said. “But to keep healing from the bone marrow transplant I received in March 2014, my doctors advised me to limit my work hours and reduce travel. To honor and support both my own recovery and the future of the organization that I founded and love, I am stepping down as director. I am very happy that I received this second chance at life, and I look forward to continuing to be of service to children, communities and the environment as a board member and a consultant to the Safe Routes to School National Partnership.” 

Since 2005, the National Partnership has been improving the quality of life for kids and communities by promoting active, healthy lifestyles and safe infrastructure that supports bicycling and walking. The National Partnership advances policy change; catalyzes support for safe, active, and healthy communities with a network of more than 700 partner organizations; and shares its expertise at national, state, and local levels with those who are helping propel this mission and vision forward.

Hubsmith has championed active transportation for two decades at local, regional, state and national levels. She started as a grassroots advocate and co-led the development of Marin County, California’s award-winning Safe Routes pilot program, and participated in the development of the nation’s first statewide Safe Routes to School program in California. She led the advocacy effort to pass the first Safe Routes to School legislation by the U.S. Congress, resulting in $1.1 billion for Safe Routes to School in all 50 states. In addition, she responded to the growing demand for creating walkable and bikeable environments for children by founding the National Partnership in 2005 and nurtured the organization from an all-volunteer organization to a powerful coalition including more than 700 partners, a $3 million annual budget and nearly 30 staff dispersed throughout the country.

During her tenure as the National Partnership’s director, Hubsmith testified before congressional committees about the benefits of Safe Routes to School, served as an inspiring keynote speaker at numerous events and co-led the California advocacy campaign and coalition that secured the new $130 million per year Active Transportation Program. In 2012, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recognized Deb's passionate leadership and the exemplary work of the National Partnership with a Pioneering Innovation Award as a game changer in advancing policies and strategies to prevent and control obesity. 

“Deb is an invaluable champion for the work. We are pleased that she is taking care of her health and are grateful for her visionary leadership in growing the National Partnership from an idea to a collaborative organization that serves as an effective change agent for this country,” said Risa Wilkerson, board chair. “The National Partnership is well-positioned for this transition with Deb’s continued involvement and our strong and capable staff and board that has shepherded the organization during Deb’s illness.”  

Hubsmith added, “I have full confidence that the Safe Routes to School National Partnership will continue to thrive and make an important difference in increasing physical activity for children and inspiring healthy community design in communities, especially for those who are most in need.”  

The National Partnership’s Board of Directors has begun the process of creating a search committee to oversee the recruitment and selection of the next executive director for the National Partnership. Questions about the search or suggestions of potential candidates can be directed to Wilkerson at risa@saferoutespartnership.org. To read Hubsmith’s personal reflections on this transition, please visit her blog.  

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