Cascade Members, Meet Your Board of Director Candidates!
The Cascade Board of Directors represents the voice of its members and is responsible to the membership. Their role is to ensure that Cascade’s resources are being used to the greatest benefit for all members, as well as the larger community.
For 2022 we have nine seats up for election. Over the past months, we’ve received great nominations. After review, the search committee is happy to present the following new and returning candidates to the Cascade Board of Directors.
If elected (or re-elected), the board members will serve a three-year term beginning in 2022.
The candidates are:
- Nick Brown, Current Director
- Gabe Castillo, Prospective Director Candidate
- Roxana Gomez, Prospective Director Candidate
- Allison Handy, Prospective Director Candidate
- Gina Kavesh, Prospective Director Candidate
- Michael Lui, Prospective Director Candidate
- Kai Shih, Prospective Director Candidate
- Kermit Williams, Current Director
- Richard Wolf, Current Director
Nick Brown, Current director
Nick is a life-long cyclist excited to join the board of Cascade Bicycle Club to both participate in and support a club whose mission improves the quality of life in our communities. His cycling spans racing, touring, and commuting and he realizes the benefit of the Club’s hard work every time he saddles up. The Club’s comprehensive approach to serving the community broadly, and cycling specifically, motivates Nick to join the Board of Directors.
Professionally, Nick has 20 years of experience in business consulting, with an extensive background in stakeholder management and operating model design, as well as bringing clarity and order to challenging engagements and a people-focused, empathy-driven approach to problem-solving. He has volunteered for the Club in the past, doing maintenance on the fleet of bikes used for kids' classes, and is always excited by the passion of the people that make the Club work.
Off the bike and outside of work, my interests include teaching Nordic skiing, photography, and the quest to make the perfect loaf of sourdough.
gabe castillo, Prospective director candidate
Gabe works for Pacific Premier Bank as a VP, Senior Branch Manager with over 35 years in the financial field and experienced in managing and opening new branches for banks. He plans to bring his business development, corporate partnership affiliation, and procurement know-how to Cascade. He enjoys working with non-profits organizations because he believes they are the backbone of communities for the work they do in enriching, educating, and reinvesting resources back into the community. Gabe has been on the board of Seafair, FamilyWorks Food Bank and Resource Center, Billings Middle School, and currently with the Green Lake Chamber of Commerce.
He rediscovered cycling after his knee doctor suggested that he find a low-impact sport and since then has become an avid cyclist, having completed 23 straight STP – the first 5 on a mountain bike and the last 2 on e-bikes – the streak broken only by the pandemic, 7 RSVP, 2 High Pass Challenges and numerous other Cascade events. He started Gruppetto Cycling, a social cycling club with a focus on camaraderie, offering group rides and access to cycling information. His dad bought his first bike from Goodwill. It was red and fast. He’s had many bikes, “too many” his wife would say, since that red bike. His current ride is a Specialized Creo and a Specialized Levo – both e-bikes.
Gabe grew up in View Ridge, just up the hill from Magnuson Park, and rode his bike down to watch the planes take off and land in the 1970s when it was called the Sandpoint Naval Air Station. When he’s not riding, he enjoys walks, reading espionage and time travel books as well as refereeing high school, select teams, and CYO basketball.
Roxana gomez, Prospective director candidate
Roxana Gomez (she/her) is a first-generation American and the proud daughter of Honduran immigrants. She was born in Seattle and raised in South King County, and learned early in her life that where you live heavily affects your health outcomes. This awareness pushed her to study the social determinants of health at the University of Washington, where she graduated with a BA in Public Health. She later took her knowledge of impacted communities and lived experience to politics, where she served as a Legislative Aide to Council President M. Lorena González. She now works at the ACLU of Washington, where she works to advance their legislative agenda in Olympia.
Roxana first took up cycling as a form of exercise (and as a way to get out of her UW dorm). Soon enough, she was going on long rides almost every weekend on the Burke Gilman. Now, she doesn’t ride outside as much as she would like to, but when she does, she’s reminded of the liberation that cycling provides her.
Of course, not everyone feels this freedom. Roxana acknowledges that communities of color, in particular those in South King County, need greater investments in infrastructure before they feel safe riding their bike on the road. She’s hoping to bring this passion and awareness to the Cascade Board!
Allison handy, Prospective director candidate
Allison has enjoyed cycling since childhood but started riding seriously in 2007 in Chicago. Since then, she has done triathlons, cyclocross races, and biked across Colorado and all over Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, and Michigan. Since moving to Bainbridge Island in 2013, she has been a year-round bike (and ferry) commuter to her job in Seattle and enjoyed the 2018 RSVP. Allison rides regularly with her husband and two kids on Bainbridge, the Olympic Peninsula, and wherever else they can find the opportunity.
Professionally, Allison is the Co-Chair of the Corporate & Securities Practice at Perkins Coie LLP. She counsels public and private companies on corporate governance practices, disclosure issues, and capital markets transactions, such as equity offerings, debt offerings, and tender offers. She is also a leader of the firm’s Environmental, Social, and Governance advisory team, and co-founder and frequent contributor to the firm’s Public Chatter blog. Allison also serves as a trustee of the Pacific Northwest Research Institute.
At Perkins, Allison is active in connecting with other bike commuters in the Seattle office, especially those who are just starting in bike commuting and looking for guidance on safe routes and office amenities that make bike commuting easier.
Gina Kavesh, prospective director candidate
Gina is a Seattle native but found cycling during the few years she lived in the Bay Area. She has been a Cascade member for over 25 years and has participated in the majority of Cascade’s rides – STP, Chilly Hilly, RSVP, Flying Wheels, Kitsap Colors Classic, and many others. Along the way, Gina created several cycling clinics including a women’s only clinic in Redlands, Calif. with an average attendance of more than 100 women.
Gina has been involved in cycling governance at the national level through USA Cycling and at the local level with the Washington State Bike Association. She also served as the Executive Director of The WAVE Foundation which is best known for Cycle the WAVE. She is excited to be able to spend her energy as a Cascade Board member to support all the critical work Cascade is undertaking to ensure cycling in the Pacific Northwest is accessible and safe.
Professionally, Gina has been a retail business owner, a nonprofit executive director, and is now self-employed as a business consultant focused on working with small businesses to improve their operational functions.
Michael Lui, prospective director candidate
Mike is an entrepreneur, combat veteran, former management consultant, and product manager. Most recently, he founded and led a life science startup. Formerly, he advised Fortune 500 companies on various aspects of their corporate strategy and governance. His time in the US Army culminated in an overseas combat tour. Finally, Mike was a product manager for a large tech firm. Through all these career experiences, Mike learned the importance of teams and communities.
Mike has cycled all his adult life and has taken part in long-distance rides all over Pennsylvania, New York, California, Oregon, and Washington. After moving to Seattle eight years ago, he fell in love with the ease of cycling in the city and surrounding counties. He has participated in most of the events offered by Cascade - RSVP, Ride for Major Taylor, Flying Wheels, Chilly Hilly, and more. You’ll often find him doing laps of Mercer Island or catching his breath on the way up Zoo Hill.
Mike is interested in advocating for increased cycling diversity, safety, and infrastructure. The more people that ride bikes for all purposes – commuting, fitness, or social – the better the quality of life for everyone in the region. He is excited to advocate for these issues and to help Cascade continue to be a strong bike club that represents cyclists of all backgrounds.
Kai Shih, prospective director candidate
Kai was the last kid in his neighborhood to ditch training wheels: he was too afraid to even try. As a parent, he wants his kids to be so much better than he was. He wants biking to teach his kids to brush off that scraped knee, to feel the joys of independence and the thrill of accomplishment, to get exercise, and to help the environment. When his 10-year-old suggested they bike STP, Kai said "let’s try" even though none of them had biked more than 15 miles. The family started on group rides; his wife and two older kids have now ridden Major Taylor and Chilly Hilly together, and all had a wonderful experience. His view is these experiences will be formative, and a ride like STP will be a lifetime memory for them.
However, Kai still hasn’t seen many families or people of color participate on Cascade’s rides. He would like to join the board to push for a greater emphasis on family-oriented programs, and for increased access to biking for people of color and underserved communities. Kai believes kids, people of color, and the underserved can enjoy a lifetime of positive impacts from biking with some encouragement and support. He would like to see programs like supported rides for families (training wheels welcome!), and medals for your first ride, and for kids.
As for Kai, he’s the president of the board of the Denise Louie Education Center, which provides early childhood education to underserved communities around Seattle. He’s also the founder of Shih Investments, a financial services firm. And he holds graduate degrees from Stanford and MIT.
Kermit Williams, current director
Kermit’s favorite Cascade event is the Seattle to Portland ride. It inspires commitment to riding for a reason and demonstrates the idea of cyclists as a community in motion. He’s done it 12 times so far! He’s also enjoyed other Cascade rides such as RSVP, Flying Wheels, Chilly Hilly, and the Emerald City Ride, too. Kermit knows that Cascade does a great job having also finished other local rides including RAMROD, Tour de Blast, and Seattle 2 Spokane.
Kermit was born in Seattle and has been riding its streets since he was 9 years old. He has a lifelong passion for cycling that has been cultivated by decades of opportunities offered by Cascade. Group rides with Cascade have steered his bikes onto roads he would otherwise have never traveled in Spokane, Walla Walla, Bellingham, Camano Island, Olympia, and Tacoma. He even met his wife riding with Cascade. His interest, now that his kids are grown and his career has matured, is to give back to Cascade by offering his expertise, wisdom, and perspective.
Professionally Kermit is currently working as an Enterprise Project Manager at BECU. That means he influences people to get things done with no authority. He’s a facilitator, a process analyst, a lean practitioner, a Scrum Master, and a team builder. He’s also a strong believer in the missions of non-profit organizations and the vital role they play in supporting the community.
Richard Wolf, current director
Richard has been a bike rider his entire life and has been an active club rider in Palo Alto and Boston as well as Seattle. Since retiring as a tech executive, most recently with Microsoft and earlier with Lotus in Cambridge and Xerox in Palo Alto, he has spent two to three months each year in France, where he rides with French bike clubs. In France he became interested in randonneuring (long-distance cycling) and in 2015 he completed the legendary Paris-Brest-Paris, a 1200 km event first run in 1891. He has participated in most of the events offered by Cascade - STP, RSVP, RAW, Flying Wheels, Chilly Hilly, and the Kitsap Colors Classic - and is a Free Group Ride leader and frequent participant. His favorite recent Cascade experience was volunteering to pre-ride the STP, marking the course for hazards and flagging inaccuracies.
Richard has also done many other types of riding: daily commuting, touring, riding tandem, Zwifting, and even tricycling to work when he broke his leg and could not dismount from a bicycle. Richard is interested in offering a perspective based on his diversity of club involvement, having seen how a variety of clubs provide different models of a club experience to serve their communities. He is interested in advancing the safety of cyclists on our roads, having witnessed how local culture that respects cycling and legal frameworks such as vulnerable user laws can enhance rider safety. He is also interested in including the growing e-bike community in Cascade. He believes that a strong local bike club that represents all cyclists is essential to helping every cyclist.
Electronic voting will be available to all Cascade members on December 9, 2021 via email. Keep your eyes out for an email from Cascade Bicycle Club with your personalized voting link, and review your cascade.org account to keep your email address up to date. Please contact Cascade if your membership is active and you did not receive your personal e-ballot.