02

Blog

Safer Cycling in Dunwoody and Sandy Springs Thanks to Joe Seconder

Ben Franklin is reported to have said: “Decisions are made by those who show up.” Joe Seconder hopes more of those who value two-wheeled transportation will join him.

When it comes to cycling Joe Seconder is equal parts participant, zealot and activist. For example, a portion of his LinkedIn profile reports:

Bicycling Advocate / Evangelist. Proactively engaging to make my community, the Atlanta Region and the State of Georgia be a better and safer place to simply go for a bike ride – from the 8 year old to the 80 year old. It’s all about Connecting, Collaborating, and Creating.

An incredibly energetic and active cyclist living in Dunwoody in suburban Atlanta, Seconder preaches the gospel of cycling for health, recreational and environmental benefits but then takes it an additional step. One of his many goals is to make the streets and roads a safer place for bike riders to travel. Not to mention pretty much anywhere anyone wants to ride. This was among the reasons he started Bike Walk Dunwoody.

Joe Seconder Bike Walk Dunwoody

Pernoshal Park Pavilion; Sunday, October 9, 2016 Joe Seconder, and his following of bicycle enthusiasts of the “Bike Walk Dunwoody” started the afternoon events with a 2:00pm with a road ride around 20 miles. Bikers saw the new and improved bike friendly riding conditions on the roadways in Dunwoody. Then at 3:00pm bikers rode on the recently finished Trailway from Chamblee-Dunwoody Road at Pernoshal Road to Brook Run Park. The activities ended with the ribbon cutting ceremony of a Public Bike Repair Station installed on the trail behind the pavilion followed by a Picnic. Joe Seconder [center] leads his cyclists as they depart the pavilion for the road ride.

“We all need to share the road,” he said. “We need to start looking at driving as a privilege, not a right. We need to enforce the [traffic] laws we already have and re-engineer our streets.”

Seconder became a cyclist out of necessity in his youth. He secured a job at a restaurant 10 miles from home.  During the school year he was able to carpool to get to the job but when school let out he got to raise his transportation game.  “I was a dishwasher in high school trying to save money to buy my own car,” he recalled. “I worked full time in the Summer so I had to find a way to get there so I ended up getting a bike.”

Sandy Herrera left Joe Seconder and Matalia Mejia

Sandy Herrera [pink], Natalia Mejia [blue], Joe Seconder [middle].

After college, Seconder had the opportunity to see the world, serving in the National Guard and the U.S. Army Reserves, being assigned to diverse places such as Korea, Germany and Iraq.  His professional life also took him around the world to places like Zurich, Belfast and Copenhagen. When working in other countries he “re-started” cycling. All this travelling opened his eyes to the way other countries handle things like personal and mass transit, not to mention getting around on two wheels. While he says the idea that Europe is a cyclist’s paradise is somewhat of a myth, there is ample evidence that bikes and cars car safely share the road.

Joe brought his passion back to the States and helped start the Dunwoody Cycling group, which has about 800 members who regularly ride through Dunwoody, Sandy Springs and Brookhaven.  He has been a tireless advocate for improving cycling in his community and throughout the State, including through his role as a Board Member of the State advocacy group, Georgia Bikes.

Seconder regularly attends public/government meetings in Dunwoody and neighboring Sandy Springs to lobby city and county officials to remember the roads are paid for by everyone, thus, everyone should have equal and safe access. But he’s also quick to point out that it’s going to take more than one person, no matter how passionate they are to get things done.

“Big changes can come from the local grassroots level,” he said. “If two percent of the people (who cycle and/or walk) would spend just two hours a month on advocacy — getting to know how their city or county works — things would happen. Make time to go to one meeting per month. There are always going to be excuses but people have to show up.”

 

Comments

Georgia Bikes Keynote Speaker
Bruce Hagen Sep 17, 2020

Elliott Caldwell, the Executive Director of the statewide advocacy group Georgia Bikes! is filled with both excitement and enthusiasm at the thought of having the 11th Annual Georgia Bikes Summit to be a completely virtual event for 2020.   While he’ll miss the opportunity for camaraderie that is a staple of prior Summits, as well […]

Read More
Bike Coalition Randy 1
Joe Piscitello Sep 16, 2020

Bike Law PA‘s Joe Piscitello sits down with Randy LaBasso to learn more about his work promoting better and safer biking for all. JOE:  Randy, can you tell us about your role at the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia? RANDY:   Sure. I am the Policy Director for the Coalition which is an advocacy group that […]

Read More
Diversity in Cycling Heidi
Danny Feldman Sep 15, 2020

Diversity in cycling is a long overdue and very welcomed trend.  The face of cycling is changing, for the better. In Birmingham, Alabama, that face is Heidi Saul.  Active in multiple groups diversifying recreational cycling, Heidi is known for her cycling outfits, her passion for the bike, and her belief that cycling makes Birmingham (and […]

Read More
Virtual Bike Race
Charlie Thomas Sep 02, 2020

This article follows Part 1 about virtual bike racing in a time of COVID.   How the Tour of the Gila went virtual. For the past 33 years, the small southwestern New Mexico town of Silver City transforms into a bicycling bonanza during the final weekend of April. That’s when bicyclists from across the U.S. and internationally […]

Read More
TriDot Podcast Rachael of Bike Law
Rachael Maney Aug 31, 2020

I am honored to have been interviewed on the TriDot Podcast, discussing bicycle safety and the work of the Bike Law Network, our Foundation, and our Ambassador community. Whether you commute by bike, are a weekend warrior, slow roll with family and friends on your favorite trails, love or hate the pavement, or live for […]

Read More
Virtual Bike Race
Charlie Thomas Aug 21, 2020

As a result of COVID, I’ve spent significantly more time riding indoors. Many of our group rides have temporarily disbanded, not to mention our pleasant spring weather in Texas and Louisiana has been pushed aside by harsh summer heat and humidity.  I / Bike Law Charlie don’t feel entirely disconnected though, because I love running […]

Read More
Load More