Washington, D.C. - September 28, 2012 - A collective journey of more than 12 million miles that spanned all 50 states, the 2012 National Bike Challenge engaged more than 30,000 bicyclists nationwide -- and it all started with one man's vision at the Kimberly-Clark Corporation.
Today the League of American Bicyclists honored K-C employee Rob Gusky with the second Bicycle Friendly America Leadership Award for his role in the creation and success of the National Bike Challenge.
The new Bicycle Friendly America Leadership Award program recognizes a small number of key civic and business leaders -- from mayors and CEOs to governors and university presidents -- each year. Winners are chosen by the League's BFA team in consultation with local bicyclists and stakeholders.
"Over the past decade, we've been inspired by incredible leaders across the nation who have taken the BFA program to new heights," said Bill Nesper, the League's Bicycle Friendly America program director. "When I heard about Rob Gusky's efforts at Kimberly-Clark, I knew it was a unique and rare opportunity to inspire more people to get out and ride. Working tirelessly with the National Bike Challenge team over the past six months, Rob has been instrumental in turning a great idea into an inspirational tool that has engaged thousands of Americans from coast to coast."
In just four months, the National Bike Challenge encouraged new cyclists to start riding, current bicyclists to ride more and showcased the tremendous health and financial benefits of bicycling. The friendly, online competition created a vibrant, virtual community of thousands of cyclists who inspired and encouraged each other on a daily basis to lose weight, leave the car in the driveway and reach their individual goals.
"I'm proud to serve as Kimberly-Clark's Ambassador of Cycling," Gusky said. "We initiated our internal bicycle challenge in 2008; it expanded to the statewide Wisconsin Challenge in 2011 and was implemented nationwide as the National Bike Challenge in 2012. The Bicycle Friendly America program helped us focus our efforts to improve cycling and was critical to gain support from senior leadership. This program provides excellent guidance on areas for improvement and we converted these into specific action items our team could rally around."
With Gusky's leadership, Kimberly-Clark won first place in the Jumbo Business category, engaging more than 900 employees who logged more than 300,000 miles.
"We are thrilled that so many Kimberly-Clark employees actively participated in the Challenge," said Gail Ciccione, vice president of Continuous Improvement and Sustainability for Kimberly-Clark. "Not only does bicycling support the wellness of our employees and our communities, it contributes to improved air quality by replacing car travel with clean, healthy bicycle trips. I encourage our Kimberly-Clark employees, and all National Bike Challenge participants, to keep on pedaling."
Learn more about the Bicycle Friendly America Leadership Awards at bikeleague.org/bfa.
About the Bicycle Friendly America program
The Bicycle Friendly America program provides incentives, hands-on assistance, and award recognition for communities, universities and businesses that actively support bicycling, and ranks states annually based on their level of bike-friendliness. Learn more.
About the League of American Bicyclists
The League of American Bicyclists promotes bicycling for fun, fitness and transportation, and works through advocacy and education for a bicycle-friendly America. The League represents the interests of America's 57 million bicyclists, including its 300,000 members and affiliates. Learn more.