Meet Tony, Our New Smart Trips Manager

I’d like you all to give a warm Wisconsin welcome to the Bike Fed’s newest full-time staff member. We lured Tony away from the Active Transportati0n Alliance in Chicago to cross the Cheddar Curtain and run our new Smart Trips targeted marketing program to encourage people to walk, ride and take transit instead of drive.  Although he admits to having a couple Bears shirts, he does ride a Waterford, so he must be a good guy.

I saw Tony’s Waterford with dymano hub powered lighting in the Bike Fed’s indoor bike parking area, so I knew I would like him before we even met!

Hello Bike Fed members,

My name is Tony Giron. I am a new hire brought on board to run the Smart Trips program for the Wisconsin Bike Fed. In case you haven’t heard, the Bike Fed won a three year federal grant with the end goal of reducing drive-alone trips in Milwaukee’s Riverwest, Harambee, and Brewer’s Hill neighborhoods by increasing walking, biking, and transit use. We will have more information about this exciting new program soon.

Tony in Chicago

The Smart Trips program will provide interested residents with toolkits full of helpful resources to encourage a more active lifestyle. We want to let people know that most amenities are easily accessible by active forms of transportation. In addition to the toolkits, we will be organizing several themed bike rides and walking groups. We will also be organizing interest groups to advocate for better infrastructure and transit service, so that these neighborhoods are considered a priority when it comes to building complete streets.

A little bit about myself. I am born and raised in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood where I spent the past six years working at the Bike Fed’s sister organization, the Active Transportation Alliance. While there, I worked on various initiatives including:

  • University Marketing where I created a Borrow-A-Bike program at Loyola University

  • Better Blocks – empowered residents to advocate for infrastructure change

  • PlayStreets – shut down streets for cars and opened them up for people

  • Safe Routes to School – wrote action plans full of strategies for parents to implement

  • Bike Parking Manager for the Chicago Department of Transportation where I distributed over a thousand bike racks and started the on-street bike corral program

  • Volunteered with GO Pilsen, the Chicago version of Smart Trips

One of my favorite bike rides in recent memory is riding up to Milwaukee from Chicago on my Wisconsin-built Waterford bike, making stops in Zion State Beach Park for camping and Kenosha for lunch. Over the years I’ve put in my fair share of bike touring miles and have a titanium collarbone to prove it. I pride myself in being a person who is always in motion and always exploring. My wanderlust has taken me to places like Spain, Czech Republic, Thailand, Cambodia, Nepal, and Guatemala, where my family is from. Back in Chicago, my family owns a Spanish language bookstore that I am very proud of. The bookstore is known for bringing celebrity authors like, George Lopez and Thalia. My parents have always raised me to a person for others. I’ve been lucky enough to be able to combine that sense of community empowerment with my love of bikes.

Though I am new to Milwaukee, I aim to develop an excellent program that you can all be proud of.  I would appreciate your support moving forward, by connecting me to neighborhood champions and community based organizations that may want to support our mission in the Riverwest, Harambee, and Brewer’s Hill communities.

My email is tony.giron@wisconsinbikefed.org

Please don’t hesitate to contact me for anything.

About Dave Schlabowske, Deputy Director

Dave was the first full-time staff member hired to open the Bike Fed's Milwaukee office 15 years ago. A former professional photographer and life-long Milwaukee resident, Dave likes wool, long rides, sour beer, and a good polar vortex once in a while.

2 thoughts on “Meet Tony, Our New Smart Trips Manager

  1. Welcome, Tony! Has the hazing from Packers fans started yet? You’re already playing up your ched cred with a sweet green WI-built steel ride, so you’ve clearly got us figured out. Looking forward to meeting you one of these days. -Peter Gray, board chair-elect

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