Board of Directors

Next board meeting: Wednesday, APRIL 16 at 5:30 p.m. the Cascade office, 7400 Sand Point Way NE. 

Board meetings are open to the public. 

Board positions:

President Charles Ruthford email Charles
Vice President Daniel Weise email Daniel
Treasurer Don Volta email Don
Secretary George Durham email George
Executive Committee Member-at-large Catherine Hennings email Catherine
Director Maggie Sue Anderson email Maggie
Director Dr. Rayburn Lewis email Rayburn
Director Mo McBroom email Mo
Director Joe Platzner email Joe
Director Merlin Rainwater email Merlin
Director Ron Sher email Ron
Director Jessica Szelag email Jessica
Director Ed Yoshida email Ed

Meet the board

AnchorCharles Ruthford, President

Wheels: Surly Cross-Check, Trek Tandem. He loves that chromoly steel.

Rides: Locally, Charles enjoys riding the backroads and trails of southeast King County on the tandem with his wife or on his single when riding with his sons. Regionally, Charles and his family ride together and volunteer for Ride Around Washington (RAW), STP, Chilly Hilly, RSVP, High Pass Challenge and RAMROD. His most memorable bike trip was the 2009 RAW from La Conner across the North Cascades Highway to Kettle Falls. He serves on the RAW organizing committee as Route Director and Master of Ceremonies.

About Charles: Charles is an avid, skilled and safety-conscious cyclist who sees cycling as a pathway to good health, collaborative interactions with family and neighbors and an improved community. He believes rider safety and the integration of bicycling into communities is first and foremost the responsibility of cyclists. He is an active rider and he serves the needs of riders through education, participation, and advocacy.

Charles has had a diverse career in engineering, manufacturing, sales, information technology, human resources, ethics and compliance, and leadership and organizational development. His undergraduate education is in mathematics and science with a master’s degree in management. He is able to translate and apply his business knowledge and skills in the non-profit environment. He firmly believes that passionate people choosing to collaborate and serve for the common good can make the changes in our society that are beneficial and long-lasting.

His position on the Cascade Board is his first official board assignment. In the past, he has assisted the Special Olympics of Washington and the Friend of the Cedar River Watershed organizations with board development and strategic planning support.


Daniel Weise, Vice President

Wheels: Rodriguez S3 Steel Bike, Rodriquez "Willie Weir" UTB bike, 1979 Trek 520 Touring Bike.

Rides: Variations on the "7 Hills of Kirkland" route for short rides, and longer rides to Duvall, Monroe, Snohomish, Everett, etc. He prefers cycling the more rural roads to the more urban roads. The century Flying Wheels route is one of his local favorites. He also likes the endorphins that result from a good climb.

About Daniel: Dr. Daniel Weise is a recovering academic computer scientist, though he relapses frequently to keep up with the general scientific literature, mostly Science and Nature. While a professor in the Computer Systems Lab at Stanford, he did the usual academic things like writing papers, serving on program committees, and coercing doctoral students into finishing their degrees. He came to Seattle in 1992 to build and lead a research group on programming tools at Microsoft. He left Microsoft in 2004 to follow his interests in genetics, biology and evolution. Unfortunately, Dr. Weise's scientific training left him susceptible to deeply understanding the physics of climate change and dynamical systems, as well as how the process of science itself requires that the actual threat of catastrophic and sudden climate change be understated. So he is now a climate hawk, joining the board of Climate Solutions and otherwise spreading the word about catastrophic climate change. Bicycling itself emits no fossil carbon, and it takes far, far less energy to build a bicycle than build a car.

Daniel would like to see the club become more balanced as it grows. The club needs to continue and build upon its work on advocacy to improve cycling for everyone, but at the same time needs to invest more in its riding programs to make them stronger and increase their reach. The club's education programs are equally important. Advocacy is important because it changes laws to work better on behalf of cyclists and allocates public resources to building shared and dedicated infrastructure for making cycling safer and more appealing to a much broader swath of potential riders. Riding programs, such as Daily Rides and the supported event rides, provide social and cultural motivations and glue for people get on their bikes. It is much easier and faster to ramp riding programs than it is to build infrastructure to make cycling safer. The club must balance all approaches to increasing cycling and to make cycling a viable transportation option.


Don volta, Treasurer

Wheels: Calfees - Dragonfly; Tetra; and a Tetra with S&S couplers

Rides: Don and his wife, Jane, lead about 25 Cascade daily rides a year and participate in many more. They are regular riders of Cascade events and other local rides when they are not away on cycling trips.

About Don: Don is a Seattle U graduate with a BS in Business. He received an ROTC commission and served in the Army for 25 years. Along the way, he received an MBA from UW and graduated from the US Army War College. After he retired from the Army, Don worked for General Motors in their Defense business units, retired again after 10 years and then returned home to the Seattle area in 1997.

Don started riding after retirement and joined Cascade in 2001. After becoming a Ride Leader in 2003 and finding satisfaction in helping other riders, Don joined the Daily Rides Committee as a way to give back even more to the club. He has served in several positions on the Rides Committee, including Chair, and has managed the Cascade Training Series (CTS) for several years. Don has been on the Cascade Board since 2010 and has served as Secretary, Vice President and Treasurer.

Don and Jane have a special interest in cycling programs for kids and are committed to expanding the Basics of Bicycling program to underserved schools.

As an avid road bike rider who rides for fun, fitness and friendship and with a long involvement in Cascade's Rides and Events, Don's focus on the Board is to ensure that Cascade continues to grow as the preeminent promoter of cycling events and daily rides in the Pacific Northwest. Rides and Events provides the membership base, funding, new volunteers and other resources needed to sustain and grow our Advocacy, Education and Transportation initiatives essential to building a better community through cycling.


George Durham, Secretary

Wheels: Kogswell Model D for the daily commute and longer recreational rides; Trek 950 Xtracycle conversion for hauling kiddos, groceries and other cargo; a too-infrequently-used Klein Attitude Comp mountain bike; and a Prisa Cycling TF-2 Special Edition carbon fiber speedster for faster rides.

Rides: On a typical day, George commutes approximately five miles from Ballard to South Lake Union. He loves riding with his family and friends. A self-described "utilitarian cyclist," the bike is what generally gets George from point A to point B. He is a regular on Cascade's Flying Wheels Summer Century, the Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic and the occasional RSVP (Seattle to Vancouver). Personal goal: self-contained trans-America tour. With the kids.

About George: George is an experienced marketing and communications professional with deep experience in corporate social responsibility, global communications, and technology product marketing. He currently provides consulting and advisory services on communications and marketing strategy for commercial and nonprofit organizations. He has overseen marketing for digital consumer products at Amazon.com, created the corporate communications and community engagement functions for a publicly traded specialty financial services company, and helped manage community engagement and global Technology for Good programs at Microsoft. He has previous experience leading marketing, business management, and product launches for major technology products. He also has experience leading two Seattle-area non-profit volunteer organizations.

George brings perspective, experience, and stability to the board and has worked hard to strengthen the organization's membership, outreach, and community leadership. He is a strong believer in Cascade's mission and the club's work in advocacy, education and recreation. He appreciates that Cascade provides so many opportunities to cyclists of all stripes: from kids to families to regular commuters to competitive cyclists, he knows the club is a tremendous resource in Seattle, the region and the country.


Catherine Hennings, Executive Committee member-at-large

Wheels: A hand-built Erickson with lightning bolt lugs that is truly a work of art, found second-hand on Craig's list, and Catherine’s ride for speed and fun. A trusty Specialized with upright handlebars and full fenders for about town and the daily commute.

Rides: Catherine’s daily commute takes her from NE Seattle to South Lake Union via Eastlake or over the north end of Capitol Hill. She tries to get in at least one long ride every weekend, either an organized ride or a casual date with friends. Her favorite Cascade ride so far has been RSVP. This summer, she and her husband have a goal of riding the entire length of the first US Bicycle Route (USBR 10) in the state of Washington, which is on track to be finalized and certified in 2014.   

About:  As a Cascade Bicycle Club member, volunteer, and community advocate, Catherine is passionate about making our community a safe, fun place for bicycling. Five years ago, she started commuting to work by bike with the help of a Cascade program to encourage individuals to become regular bicycle commuters. Now she uses her bicycle as a primary form of transportation, whether biking to work, running errands by bike, or biking for fun and exercise. She and her husband even have a bike trailer that they call their “San Juan-mobile” for weekend trips to the islands on bikes. 

The tragic death of one of Catherine’s PATH coworkers as he was bicycling home from work in South Lake Union that was a real call-to-action to get more involved in advocating for bicycle safety.  Catherine participated in the first Advocacy Leadership Institute offered by Cascade and has been instrumental in bringing together a group of large employers in South Lake Union to advocate for programs and infrastructure that will increase safety for bicycling. She is currently working with Seattle Greenways to form the Lake Union Greenways group.     

Despite the fact that the Puget Sound region still has a long way to go to make bicycling easy and safe, Catherine loves that every day she shares the road with more cyclists. She believes there is a tremendous opportunity now to increase public support for bicycling and is excited to work with Cascade to help fulfill its vision of creating a community where everyone bicycles.  


maggie sue anderson, director

Wheels: 1995 Cannondale T400, complete with cool stickers, a loud bell, and soon to be not-so-squeaky brakes.

Rides: Mostly joyriding around Ballard, Fremont and Lake Washington, or trips along the Elliott Bay and Burke Gilman trails in hunt of fresh saltwater air.

About Maggie: Maggie rides in order to spend time with friends, to run errands and because she loves the excited jitters she gets at the start line of a bicycling adventure like Group Health Seattle to Portland Classic.

Maggie has made a career out of coalition building, organizing and health promotion. In her role at the Washington State University Extension, she works with community organizations, local government, school districts and the health department to promote healthy, active and safe schools and neighborhoods. She has been a Cascade supporter since she started working with the King County Food & Fitness Initiative in 2007. Her work with Cascade’s Education Foundation helped fund and launch the Chief Sealth International High School Major Taylor Youth Cycling Club in Southwest Seattle.

Maggie brings a fresh perspective, passion for community engagement, steadfast skills in campaign management and a wide-angle lens on issues communities face when it comes to access to safe environments for cycling. She is excited to work alongside the board and staff to build club membership and expand reach to new communities and demographics.


Dr. Rayburn lewis, director

Wheels: Rodriguez S2 road and Rodriquez "Willie Weir" UTB bike for touring and commuting.

About Rayburn: Born mid-century in Chattanooga, Tenn., Dr. Lewis grew up in the Midwest. He was awakened to the world outside of Michigan and Indiana by college roommates and made his first long bike trip in June and July of 1970, circumnavigating Lake Huron with two other friends. The 900-mile trip took 23 days, 14 of them in the rain. The second major trip of that year was to the Rockies, Sierra-Cascades and the Pacific Ocean. An immediate love for the northwest brought Rayburn back here as a medical student later in the 1970s.

Medicine, the outdoors, hiking, cycling, skiing, gardening and community service all blend into a nearly indistinguishable medley he calls “The doing that makes my being.” Rayburn was Franklin High School’s team physician for 23 years and spent summers as a 4H volunteer supporting student cycling. For over 20 years, the second weekend in August would find 20 or more student athletes, coaches and volunteers climbing Hurricane Ridge, followed by the 80-mile ride back to Seattle the next day. Dr. Lewis is committed to fostering opportunities for young people of color to participate in non-traditional athletic activities, cycling foremost.

Activities such as an original Bike Works Board member, Puget Sound Blood Center, Washington State Association of Black Professionals in Health Care, the early days of Neighborcare Health (Puget Sound Neighborhood Health Centers-Yesler Terrace), round out his short list of “can’t say no to an invitation to serve.”


Mo mcbroom, director

Wheels: Specialized Tricross Elite with fenders, lights, and bag for daily commute to downtown. Scratched-up old Bianchi with a third wheel for pedaling with the kid.

About Mo: When she’s not on her bike, Mo is the Director of Government Relations for The Nature Conservancy of Washington, where she works with elected officials, government agencies and businesses to advocate for environmental policy and appropriations. Mo was previously the Policy Director for the Washington Environmental Council, where she spearheaded wide ranging legislative efforts such green infrastructure funding, promoting locally-grown foods in public schools and the creation of a state-wide recycling program for computers and televisions. She is the co-chair of King County Conservation Voters and a recovering trial lawyer. She holds a law degree (JD) from the University of Chicago. Her proudest accomplishment is being a Mom of a six-year-old who loves to bike.


Joe platzner, director

Wheels: 650b Platzner randonneur with fenders, lights and bags. Pegoretti Marcello when the sun is out plus a garage full of random steel.

Favorite ride: You mean you have to pick?

About Joe: From April to September 2013 Joe served as the Interim Executive Director of Cascade.

Joe is a former aerospace executive who focused on strategy and marketing. He has a master’s in transportation planning from Cornell University. Prior to his tenure as interim executive director at Cascade, Joe was active on the executive committees of the boards of both the Bicycle Alliance of Washington and Cascade. Joe has great optimism for the future of cycling in Puget Sound with Elizabeth's leadership of the capable, enthusiastic Cascade team.

Joe plans to once again be an active member of the Seattle International Randonneurs. He likes to do silly rides like the nighttime 200K winter solstice ride. Joe enjoys coffeeneuring with his daughter who gets a kid’s hot chocolate. Allegedly, Joe has raced a ‘cross race or two with team Soft Like Kitten, which wins, hands-down, the best jersey contest. He also enjoys rides like Group Health STP and RSVP with his more mainstream friends. Joe lives in Bellevue with his wife, Anne, and his daughter, Elizabeth.


merlin rainwater, director

About Merlin: I’ve enjoyed biking for transportation most of my life.  As a retired nurse, I see riding a bike as the cornerstone to my personal well-being, and as the answer to most of the world’s problems.

I first joined Cascade as a bike-to-work Team Captain. At the time I was the only person biking to work at my office, and I was pleased and surprised when five co-workers joined me.  Both those who chose to ride on my team, and those who declined had similar questions and concerns:  “I don’t know how to find a safe route to ride!”  “I’m scared to ride in traffic!”   “What about the hills, and the rain?”  I had easy suggestions for the rain (right gear) and the hills (right gears), and I thought it should also be easy to help my co-workers plan good routes. After all,  I’ve been riding my bike all over Seattle for years!  Looking at the streets through my co-workers eyes however, the disappearing bike lanes, sharrows leading riders into heavy traffic, and complete gaps in mapped bike routes jumped out at me.  I became an even stronger advocate for biking, walking and transit.  When I retired last year from my career as a hospice nurse, I redoubled my commitment to making Seattle “a better community through bicycling!”

Soon after I retired, I had the privilege of participating in Cascade’s first Advocacy Leadership Institute.  With the support of Cascade’s advocacy staff and friends in Seattle Neighborhood Greenways, I initiated a project called Safe Routes to Health, calling on Seattle’s healthcare institutions to be champions for safe streets where people of all ages and abilities can enjoy biking, walking or traveling in wheelchairs.  I  recently became a ride leader and initiated a series of S.L.O.W. Rides for Senior Ladies* On Wheels (*all riders of all ages welcome, as long as you ride S.L.O.W!), in order to provide more opportunities for hesitant riders to discover the joys of bicycle riding.

Vision: As a member of Cascade’s board, my goals are to

  • be a strong voice for my friends who would like to ride bikes but are deterred by unsafe and confusing conditions in our communities
  • insure that Cascade is a welcoming club that reflects King County’s full range of diversity
  • expand efforts that encourage people to begin to ride bikes, including the Major Taylor Project, Family Riding events and classes, and school-based events such as bike rodeos and Bike to School efforts
  • expand “easy” and “leisurely” ride offerings for beginning bicyclists, families and older adults
  • advocate for a transportation system that integrates biking with walking and transit to create vibrant, sustainable communities.

Thank you for the opportunity to serve.


ron sher, director

Wheels: Ron rides a Rodriguez for commuting and in the winter. A Parlee Z-5 is his choice for road riding and climbing. He and his wife spend time together on their Rodriguez tandem.

Rides: Ron bikes to work, appointments and to just around. On Saturdays, Ron rides with the Buty Riders, and he also seems to manage a bike trip to France yearly. Working less and riding more appears to be a goal on which he is making progress.

About Ron: With an MBA in Finance and a PhD in Agricultural Economics, Ron likes to call himself a community builder with a hobby of creating vital urban places but most people would just call him a real estate developer. Ron is the Managing Partner of the Crossroads Shopping Center in Bellevue, founder and owner of Third Place Books and is currently working to add vitality to downtown Bremerton. The main non-profits he is currently involved with are the Urban Land Institute, the Project for Public Spaces and Forterra, which follow his interest in creating great places and urban vitality.

Vision: Ron dreams of Great livable cities where people can live lightly, walk and bike, know and support their neighbors and do much less damage to our world. He hopes people will read Urbanism in the Age of Climate Change by Peter Calthorpe.


Jessica Szelag, Director

Wheels: Fuji Silhouette road bike for almost every ride, an 82 Trek that I just can’t seem to part with, and a mighty fine (read: $80) Schwinn mountain bike for getting to hard-to-reach trailheads down forest service roads

Rides: Most of my time on my bike is spent commuting from Phinney Ridge to downtown Seattle. There’s nothing I love more though than exploring new areas on my bike and finding some hills. Favorite rides are through Woodway to Edmonds, NE Perkins Way to Kenmore, Vashon, Bainbridge and Whidbey Islands and the North Cascades Highway. And if you’ve never biked from the top of Cougar Mountain down to Lake Washington through Newcastle, I highly suggest you go right now and try it. Hills!

About Jessica: Jessica is the Executive Director of Commute Seattle and Chair of the Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board. Through my job and volunteer activities I am working daily to improve Seattle’s bicycling infrastructure and to create a supportive environment for all ages and abilities of bike riders.  Cascade Bicycle Club has been instrumental in growing my passion for bicycling, by providing access to a community of cyclists who bike for many different and wonderful reasons and by championing projects, supporting elected officials, and lobbying for the types of improvements I’d like to see in the Puget Sound Region. Biking is my hobby, my personal passion, and a lifestyle choice for me and my family.  

As a member of Cascade’s Board of Directors I hope to use my skills, background, and passion for biking to help realize the organization’s mission and goals. My experience in non-profit management, strategic planning and budgeting has given me a great foundation to be able to contribute to the Board of Directors and I am hopeful that through CBC’s rides, classes, youth and commute programs, and policy work we will continue to see more and more people using their bicycles for everyday transportation. While there are so many wonderful benefits of cycling including, health, cost savings, environmental benefits, etc….my main love for biking comes from the reality that it is fun and an excellent way to get around!  Sharing the joy of bicycle riding with a wonderful community of riders is what I am truly inspired by. 


Ed yoshida, director

Wheels: A Kona Dr Dew for commuting and a Davidson titanium for recreational road rides.

Rides: Ed bike commutes regularly from his home near Sea-Tac Airport to his office in the South Lake Union area in Seattle. He has ridden most of the Cascade-sponsored rides such as the Chilly Hilly, Flying Wheels, STP, RSVP and the inaugural Red-Bell 100 last year. His favorite ride is any ride that leaves from his house and lets him ride his bike.

About Ed: Ed started riding seriously in the mid-70s after college. He dabbled in racing but didn’t have the lungs, legs or desire to pursue that endeavor. Ed commuted by bike regularly during law school since he had sold his car to be able to afford going to school. His first long ride was a self-supported tour from Astoria to San Francisco in 1982. Then in 1990, Ed and his wife, Marcy, embarked on an around the world bike tour during which they rode about 5,000 miles. Vocationally, he is a lawyer with PATH, a nonprofit organization that works on global health. As a member of the Cascade board, he is very interested in getting more people on bikes, both for recreation and transportation. Ed advocates for a transportation infrastructure that will allow everyone to ride or walk safely throughout the Puget Sound area in order to develop a livable, sustainable, urban environment.

Board Committees (chair):

Executive (Charles Ruthford)
Facilities (Ron Sher)
Finance (Don Volta)
Governance (Daniel Weise)
Strategic (Charles Ruthford)