Rider Profile: Jon Brockopp

Jon Brockopp on bikeMeet Jon Brockopp, fifth in our get-to-know-the-riders series.  The 2014 PA-to-DC ride  will take place May 2-6.  

When I was 12, I began taking long rides on my bike as a way of getting out of a tension-filled house – the solitude, the beauty, and the adventure were a comfort to me, as was the simple rhythm of peddling along. By the time I was a freshman at Purdue University, I was riding home for the weekend: 180 miles round trip. After college, I took a 2,000 mile solo ride up the East Coast.

I have very fond memories of those long trips, of having the time to think about God and my place in creation, especially of seeing the Spirit at work in chance encounters along the Continue reading Rider Profile: Jon Brockopp

Rider Profile: Janet Swim

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Today, meet Janet Swim in the fourth profile in our get-to-know-the-riders series.  The 2014 PA-to-DC ride  will take place May 2-6.  

I spend most of my day thinking about environmental sustainability and, in particular, climate change.  I think about it as part of my work, as a Social Psychologist at Penn State, studying how to encourage scientifically grounded public discourse climate change, individual actions to reduce our personal contribution to climate change, and collective action to adopt policies and procedures to address climate change.   I also think about it when I make decisions about my personal everyday actions and civic activities.  Because I have attended religious services all of my life, it is not surprising that my thoughts and actions would be a part of my spiritual life as well.

There are two aspects of religion that motivate my actions. First, my experience with religions Continue reading Rider Profile: Janet Swim

Rider Profile: Dorothy Blair

DorothyBlair.BuddhaToday, meet Dorothy Blair as the third profile in our get-to-know-the-riders series.  The 2014 PA-to-DC ride  will take place May 2-6.  

I guess you could say I am an outdoor, adventuresome type.  Adventure to me means traveling through places on bike or foot where the scenery is inspiring, or to where people find satisfaction and meaning in lives totally different from my own.  I joined the Peace Corps back in 1968, right out of college. and spent 2 years working in the Philippines, teaching and helping to create greater food security among the poor. After the Peace Corps and a stint as a social services caseworker I got my PH.D. from Cornell University. and joined the Penn State Nutritional Sciences Dept. and STS Program to teach about nutrition and food security.  I retired in 2012, continuing to work in nutrition abroad, most lately in Mozambique and and Uganda.

Lack of food security, poverty and inequality create hunger, but climate warming is a game changer.  Since 1980, I have taught about the threat of climate change Continue reading Rider Profile: Dorothy Blair

Rider Profile: Molly Hunter

IMG_1787Today, meet Molly Hunter, the second in our get-to-know-the-riders series.  The 2014 PA-to-DC ride  will take place May 2-6.  

Have you ever been on a long bike-ride before?
When I was 9 (I’m now 15) I went on a 3 day bike ride with my mom, but our daily rides were short, and we slept in bed and breakfasts.  When I was 12 my whole family did a trip where we rode 25 km 2 days in a row.  This trip will be three times that each day, and twice as many days (but my legs are longer, and I have more gears).

Why do you care about climate change?
Because I’ve been taught to care about it, and because it’s a problem.  Continue reading Rider Profile: Molly Hunter

Rider Profile: Jason Whitney

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We thought you might like to get to know the riders for the 2014 PA to DC ride while they’re busy getting winter legs (and gears) in shape for the May 2-6 ride.  Watch this space for introductions.  Today, meet Jason Whitney:

Even before I became aware of impending climate-change catastrophes, my instincts leaned towards conservation and stewardship.  When I contemplate global warming, I think first and foremost of the suffering and starvation that will be brought about by rising sea levels, freakish weather, drought, desertification, and wildfires.  My passion for scuba diving taught me about the crisis facing coral reefs and other marine ecosystems.  So much change is happening so fast that we are in truly unchartered territory.  

I believe that a Higher Power takes an interest in guiding each of us as individuals to live the most meaningful and worthwhile life that is possible in the small time we have on earth, and I find my greatest contentment in aligning my will with that of my creator by serving the greater Continue reading Rider Profile: Jason Whitney