Joe Baker joined Adventure Cycling in 2019 after 13 years working for Care2 in Silicon Valley. At Care2, Joe was VP of Advocacy and Growth, overseeing advocacy, Care2 member support, and online advertising. Prior to Care2, Joe worked for NTEN as Executive Director and for Amnesty International doing membership organizing, online advocacy, and online fundraising. He also volunteered for the Sierra Club in both Los Angeles and San Francisco, leading peak bagging trips and assisting with outdoor training programs. Joe enjoys cycling, backpacking, skiing, gardening, and guitar.
Melinda came to Adventure Cycling in 2020 after residing in Indiana for most of her life. She fell in love with cycling on the rolling hills of Southern Indiana while training for the Little 500 race at Indiana University. After graduating, Melinda spent several years working in analytical chemistry, but she desperately missed having her days revolve around bikes. She consequently bought a one-way ticket to Finland in 2015 and spent much of the next 2.5 years cycling her way through Europe, Asia, and North America. Melinda eventually returned to the USA and led her first organized, cross-country bike tour with Bike & Build in 2018. She quickly realized that introducing folks to touring was just as much fun as being on the road herself and is excited to continue to do so as part of the Tours Department. In addition to cycling, Melinda enjoys fiber crafts, spending time in nature, and laughing at her own jokes.
David lived a good part of his life in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where he worked in IT for a telecommunications corporation. He grew restless working at a behemoth corporation so he took time off of his career to work in bike shops while earning a degree in Philosophy from the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee. After graduating David found himself in Montana. He has worked at Adventure Cycling Association since the summer of 2013. For leisure David enjoys all that Missoula and Montana have to offer including playing hockey, backcountry skiing, and backpacking. David is an avid bike commuter and truly enjoys the recreation of all types of cycling.
Brian joined the organization in 2014 after having worked for various bicycle frame and parts manufacturers across the western United States. His most memorable, and longest bike ride was a 209 mile loop through central California. Most days you can find him riding his bike or running the trails around Missoula with his wife, Jenna, and their dog, Leo.
Levi’s been drawing pictures since he could hold a marker, an obsession that led him to a BFA in Design from Montana State University in 2014. During college he grew an interest in two expensive hobbies: cycling and woodworking. After living and working in Bozeman, MT for over two years after school, he found a spectacular career at Adventure Cycling in the Marketing & Communications Department. When not in the office, he’d prefer to be with his wife Sally, illustrating something worthwhile, or riding one of his bikes.
Rick joined Adventure Cyclist magazine in 2008 and works out of his office in the Columbia River Gorge in White Salmon, WA. He started off his career in the ski industry in Colorado and has continued in all facets of the sporting goods industry including the windsurfing, kiteboarding, stand-up paddle realms that brought him to the Gorge. He has been involved in publishing for the last 15 years and has been an avid mountain and road biker most his life. He enjoys all and any sports that the current season brings!
Maxton, originally from North Carolina, lived in over a dozen locales across the country before finding himself in Montana. After strictly commuting by bicycle for years, he decided to ride the TransAmerica Trail and Oregon coast in the summer of 2015, where he discovered his love for long distance touring and the magic that comes along with it. He joined the ranks at Adventure Cycling the following summer. Maxton and his son love to host touring cyclists at their home. He has also taken on the role of photographer for “The Open Road Gallery,” Adventure Cycling’s extensive black and white portrait collection.
Wanting to trade the concrete of Chicago for the lush forests and trails of Montana, Laurie left a sixteen-year library career behind to ride the TransAmerica Trail and start a new life in Missoula in 2015. The ultimate goal, of course, was to work at Adventure Cycling and after several projects and temporary positions in various departments, Laurie has finally found a home in the Tours Department. Nothing makes her happier than the connections that are made with strangers while on the road, whether a fleeting conversation at a gas station or a new-found friend who offers a bed and meal. Her go-to saying is, "if you ever want to restore your faith in humanity, go on a bike tour - the kindness of strangers is overwhelming."
Laura joined Adventure Cycling in 2017 after eight years of working in bike tourism. Laura and her partner Russ founded The Path Less Pedaled after a fateful decision to sell everything and travel by bike. The subsequent three years on the road taught them about the kindness of strangers and the ways in which cycling can positively impact small and rural communities. A native Oregonian, Laura loves riding gravel roads through wide-open country and fly-fishing small rivers.
April started working at Adventure Cycling in the spring of 2015, after using their maps and the mantra "keep the ocean on your right" to navigate down the Pacific Coast on a solo tour. She hails from the sagebrush country of southwest Montana. Her first bike was a single-speed, banana-seat called The Pink Angel. She likes long walks on the beach and … wait, that’s for a different online profile.
Richard was born in Virginia and moved to the Missoula area at the age of three. He loves it here in Montana and has no plans of leaving. He started working for Adventure Cycling in May 2004 after doing similar jobs for the Forest Service for the previous four years. In his spare time he enjoys crossword puzzles, camping, riding his swing bike, and playing banjo while singing with his dad.
Born in the UK to two adventurous Americans, Jessica grew up surrounded by the thrill and joy of taking the path less traveled. When her family settled in Missoula, MT permanently, she found many of her passions in the mountains and rivers that surrounded her new home. After receiving her MS in Business Analytics from the University of Montana in 2017, she was resolved on using data science for social good. Outside of school, she headed south to the beaches of North Carolina where she helped a few startups hit the ground running, she designed and validated surveys in Chicago, and she even managed to learn some French along the way! When she’s off the clock, you can find Jessica finishing up her remodel of a 1962 Airstream Land Yacht.
Eva Dunn-Froebig came to Missoula to complete her master's degree in journalism at the University of Montana in 2000. Since then she has worked for the Missoula Art Museum and Run Wild Missoula, and volunteered for La Leche League of Missoula. She is a member of the Bike Walk Alliance of Missoula board of directors and a bicycle commuter. When Eva is not working or spending time with her family, she likes to escape to Missoula's North Hills to run with her dog Tipson.
Jake grew up in Logan, Utah and spent time in Big Sky, Montana and Jackson Hole, Wyoming before attending school in Missoula, Montana. He studied finance at the University of Montana through 2017 and was a student employee for Adventure Cycling for more than half his time in school. He started out as a volunteer restocking bins used for guided tours. Next, he worked as a membership assistant through the university’s work-study program. In 2015 he became the accounting assistant and was married to his wife Amber in the same year. Jake officially became an employee with Adventure Cycling in 2017. Jake fell in love with long-distance bicycle travel after riding from Bozeman, Montana to Sacramento, California in 2006. Now Jake can be found cycling on the trails and logging roads surrounding Missoula.
In 2013 Haydin biked cross country from Baltimore, MD to Seattle, WA with the 4K for Cancer – a program of the Ulman Foundation that raises funds and awareness for young adults with cancer. From her bike seat, she was able to see first-hand how beautiful things are and how generous people can be. After her trip, Haydin worked at a bike shop in her hometown of Lusby, MD for three years before moving to Missoula, MT. She loves everything Missoula has to offer including biking, hiking, fly fishing, and sour beer! She also loves meeting new people, volunteering, and snuggling with her cat, Arthur.
Born and raised a proud Texan, Daniel got into cycling while at the University of North Texas. In 2016, on a Trans-AM cycling tour, he visited Adventure Cycling and fell in love with his future home. The next year, he led another tour where he managed 30 cyclists’ safety coast to coast. He spent some time interning on Capitol Hill and for a refugee resettlement organization before graduating and cycling around Ireland. He’s cycled on some beautiful roads around the world, but has seen far too many unsafe ones for his taste. As Safety Program Coordinator he’s committed to improving America’s roads for bicycle tourists, one rumble strip at a time. On the weekends, you can find him lost in the mountains or playing Hurling on the fields of Missoula.
Julie started working at Bikecentennial in 1985 as the receptionist for the organization then moved over to head the Membership Department for 32 years. In the hours away from the office, Julie is one of the driving forces of cycling in Missoula. She founded Montana Dirt Girls, a women's mountain bike & hiking group and is a founding member of a Missoula mountain-bike advocacy group. Her goal is to inspire more people to ride even if she has to do it one person at a time.
Hailing from the great state of Maine, Mike joined Adventure Cycling in the fall of 2013 as a Tours Specialist. After a brief hiatus, he returned as the Tours Assistant Director and is excited about getting people out traveling by bike. Before moving to Missoula, Mike spent six years with Apogee Adventures, planning and leading hiking and biking tours for students, including co-leading two cross-country (Charleston, SC to San Diego, CA), self-contained bike tours. In his free time, Mike enjoys all things active and outside, trying to find a tall mountain to climb.
Born in the Yellowhammer state, Ally developed an affinity for magazine design in Alabama; she fell in love with bicycles in Texas. After receiving a BFA in Graphic Design and Printmaking from The University of Alabama in 2014, she headed to Austin where the bike scene consumed her. There, Ally spent her weekends matching road mileage to the temperature (106 miles in 106° once) and weekdays commuting around the city. Now she prefers to stick to dirt, rambling around the backcountry. Ally began her dream job at Adventure Cycling in 2017 after experiencing a series of truly transformative bike tours.
Carla bicycled across the country in 1976 with Bikecentennial; the trip changed her life and she moved to Montana. She's been a part of the Routes & Mapping Department since 1983, from the time of hand-drawn maps all the way to the present computer-generated mapping. Now that she is enjoying an empty nest, she has time for biking, reading, traveling, and doing crafts
In 1989 Teri joined the organization and since then she has held the title of Receptionist, Administrative Assistant to the Director, Sales Director and Sales & Marketing Director. A native Montanan, Teri loves to bike, hike, ski, camp and travel the world with her husband Thorsten.
Originally from Chapin, SC, Geoff was lured west by Glacier National Park, MT, where he spent two college summers hiking and exploring. He then transferred to the University of Montana where he finished his B.S. degree in recreation management at the School of Forestry. Geoff has worn many career hats, from being a recreation manager at a private boarding school to working in the airline industry and as a certified rehabilitation specialist. He joined the Adventure Cycling team in December 2012 as a sales and shipping associate and considers it his best career adventure to date. Geoff has enjoyed exploring the trails, rivers, and back roads of Idaho and Montana with his wife Bridget and introducing their kids to the same. On his days off, you will find Geoff managing his family's recreation plans, whether it be taking a day hike in the Bitterroots, paddling a kayak on Holland Lake, going on a bike overnight to a lookout, fly-fishing the Blackfoot River (i.e. untangling a kid's line), or skiing the slopes of Snowbowl. And if you happen to hear the drone of bagpipes in the Missoula area, you may find Geoff there, piping his favorite tunes.
Jim, a recent Missoula transplant by way of New Mexico, was raised in Southern California. Having lived all over the U.S. working for various publishing and design firms, Jim and his wife Jeanne have found Missoula to be a place to finally call home. “Having grown up biking in the mountains outside of Los Angeles, I can only say this town is certifiably bike crazy. We’re looking forward to exploring all the trails and back roads."
Originally from the Twin Cities, Dan studied German in Duluth, worked as a mechanic in the Marine Corps for five years, and studied creative writing at Columbia University. He finally moved to Missoula in 2013 for graduate school and stayed because, well, duh. He first caught the mountain biking bug in Minnesota and has lately been considering cycling of the paved variety. If there’s snow in the mountains, you’ll likely find Dan out there with his snowboard. If the snow has melted, he’ll be on his mountain bike.
Before coming to Missoula in early 2012, Melissa studied GIS at the University of Wyoming. After completing an M.S. degree, she biked cross-country from Los Angeles to Boston to promote cycling as transportation. This experience introduced her to bicycle touring and Adventure Cycling, both of which she quickly came to love. Three years later she was able to combine her career (GIS/mapping) with her passion (bicycle touring) by joining the Routes & Mapping crew at Adventure Cycling. When not at work, Melissa can be found biking, hiking, gardening, traveling, and enjoying music.
Daniel grew up in Croatia where he developed an early interest in graphic design inspired by childhood obsessions with drawing, comics, and reading popular science magazines. After moving to St. Petersburg, Florida in 1999, he eventually found work as a magazine designer in the custom publishing industry. While looking to replace a stolen commuter bike, Daniel entered the wacky world of Craigslist bike ads and became obsessed with acquiring and repairing used/abused bicycles. That initial sprinkling of magical, bike-fairy dust turned hard to shake off — he started volunteering at, and eventually became a part owner of, St. Pete Bike Co-op and his cycling expanded from commuting to bike camping and touring. He somewhat reluctantly exchanged his Florida sandals for winter boots, but Daniel is more than happy to call Missoula his new home and is enthusiastically awaiting whatever new adventures Montana throws at him. His free time is usually divided between riding bicycles, drawing, reading, eating dark chocolate snacks, and watching movies — preferably all in the same day and in good company.
Scott looks forward to expanding Adventure Cycling’s community to give everyone with a bike the confidence, community, and gratitude that is at the heart of the Adventure Cycling experience. His association with Adventure Cycling goes back to when the organization was still called Bikecentennial. In 1991, he stepped off a plane in San Francisco with a bike and a Bikecentennial map to lead him down the Pacific Coast. He’s also embarked on bike trips through Mexico and from Alaska to Montana. In addition to his previous role as Executive Director of EPI in Missoula, Pankratz has served as a nonprofit leader in Western Montana and a guest lecturer at the University of Montana.
Beth started in 2001 for Adventure Cycling as the receptionist then spent some time as the sales lead. Since then, she has added many tasks to her position, including keeping our busy office organized and managing the Bike Bits email list. She enjoys reading, crocheting, and baking in her time away from the office. She also enjoys spending time with her husband, Joe and their two young adult kids, whenever they can catch up with them.
A Montana native, Gage moved to Missoula in 2003 to attend the University of Montana where he received a BA in English Creative Writing and Literature in 2007. After graduation, he spent five years employed in the corporate world before finding his true calling with Adventure Cycling in the spring of 2012. While out of the office, Gage enjoys cycling, hiking, gardening, reading, and floating the rivers around Missoula. More than anything, he enjoys spending time with his wife Karen, their cats Toonces and Wednesday, and a tenacious pug named Napoleon.
Jamie joined the Adventure Cycling staff in the spring of 2015. In 2007 he earned a BA from The University of Montana in Cartography/GIS and has been making maps nonstop since then. He has been bike commuting all of his life and looks forward to learning the ropes of bike touring. When not tinkering with maps and computers he can be found hiking and boating around Montana and Idaho.
John started at Adventure Cycling as the web developer during May of 2006 after spending 7½ years at a local Missoula software development company. He is originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, but moved to Missoula in 1993 to attend the University of Montana and enjoy the Montana outdoors. John likes to spend his free time with his wife Kim and hiking with their two dogs Jema and Tasha. John and Kim both also enjoy playing in the local ice hockey leagues for fun and exercise.
A native Missoulian and UM graduate, Mad Max has spent the majority of his life astride a bicycle. Though most folks see the bicycle as a means of transportation, young Max saw it as a way to get airborne and go fast. With childhood enthusiasm, he turned his poor parents’ yard into an obstacle course of elevated wooden skinnies and large dirt jumps. Before he was old enough to be legally employed, Max moonlighted at a local bike shop, using his meager profits to purchase more bikes and products. Max followed up a decade-plus in bike shops with a brief career as the finance director for a car dealership, which bolstered his bike collection and professional resume. He has since broadened his bicycle endeavors to include cyclocross and touring, though you're sure to find him aboard a mountain bike on the weekends.
Saara joined the Adventure Cycling staff in the fall of 2013, after working as a volunteer on the U.S. Bicycle Route System. She has been a bike commuter all her life and bicycle advocacy has long been one of her passions. She came to Missoula in 2006 to attend the University of Montana and graduated with a bachelor’s in Environmental Studies. She has a serious case of the travel bug and plans to explore the world bit by bit on her bike, while pursuing her obsession with photography.
Sheila joined Adventure Cycling Association in 2001 as the Controller and in 2009 moved to Chief Operations Officer. She previously worked at the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. She received both her undergraduate degree in Political Science and Master’s in Accounting from the University of Montana. She spends her free time with her husband Ron, daughter Erin, and son Dylan. She enjoys going to bluegrass festivals and hockey games, as well as baking and reading.
Alex visited Montana for the first time when he was nine years old and pretty much began counting down the days until he could leave Memphis, Tennessee, for Big Sky Country. A graduate of the University of Montana School of Journalism, he edited a pair of weekly newspapers in Montana and worked in marketing/public relations in the cycling and outdoor industries in Utah before joining Adventure Cycling. Alex is a mountain biker recently (and perhaps dangerously) less afraid of catching air, a relapsing runner, and a BBQ snob. When he’s not working on Adventure Cyclist, he and his wife, Keriann, are trying to stay one step ahead of their wily corgi, Huck.
Ginny grew up on a ranch in central Montana but has called Missoula home for the past 25+ years. She started at Adventure Cycling in 2005 as the new routes coordinator, helping the routes and mapping team coordinate partnerships for the Underground Railroad Bicycle Route after working on health disparities with undeserved communities in Montana and Louisiana. In those early years, Ginny was the sole employee devoted to shepherding the U.S. Bicycle Route System from a bunch of lines on a map to the start of an official national network. Today, Ginny is director of travel initiatives, which is code for improving bike travel experiences, such as bikes on trains, bikes in parks, bike camping, better road conditions, and advocating for bike paths. When not at work talking about bicycles, Ginny loves to ride, hike, and play hockey with her girlfriends, hubby, and adult kids.
Nathan has been in Montana since 1998, and now has the privilege of raising his sons Aden and Bay here with his wife Christa. A native of coastal Maine, he had found himself employed throughout the country as, among other things, a Christmas tree harvester, a sushi chef, and a lobsterman before settling in Missoula and earning a BS in Geosciences from UM. When he is not attempting to corral rambunctious boys, Nathan enjoys going up mountains.
Amy grew up in Northern California and moved to Missoula in 2013 to fulfill a lifelong dream of living in Western Montana. She earned her master’s degree in Geography from UM in spring of 2015 and began working at Adventure Cycling in fall of 2015. Amy loves to spend the weekends in the mountains, exploring the beautiful wildness that Montana has to offer with her husband Garin. When not escaping into the wilderness, Amy can be found biking around town, hanging out at the Top Hat, or snuggling up with a good book and her two precious cats, Sugar and Spice.
Kate Whittle grew up in a rural area outside Billings, Montana, and comes to Adventure Cycling with a background in journalism. She graduated from the University of Montana School of Journalism in 2011, and has been very lucky to spend most of her career in beautiful Missoula. Her previous employers include a TV news station, an organic farm, and the Missoula Independent newspaper. She currently makes some pretty decent hot sauce. Kate is also passionate about food, writing, biking to work, and growing massive amounts of heirloom tomatoes in the summertime. Her bike has a kickstand, and she likes it that way.
Emma joined Adventure Cycling in August 2015. After falling in love with bike commuting in Washington, DC, she started leading women’s social rides and did a bike overnight with a friend. That’s when her passion for cycling transformed into a passion for bicycle travel. When she's not biking, you might find her hiking the local hills or soaking in hot springs.
Jessica, born and raised in Oklahoma under the sign of the scissor-tail flycatcher to a long lineage of Oklahomans, took flight in 2007 and landed in Missoula, Montana. With a background in nonprofit marketing, she joined Adventure Cycling in 2018. Her job is to make new online visitors comfortable, promptly giving them whatever they might be looking for, fluffing their pillows in the hopes they’ll stay awhile and get to know the adventure cycling community. Jessica has a couple of degrees, but more importantly, she has a beautiful 1970s Gitane mixte that she recently converted into a single speed for her daily commute. Look for her on the local trails, running downhill as fast as her legs will carry her and encouraging others to do the same.
Bekah relocated to Missoula after four years of bike tour guiding on the east coast. After completing a degree in journalism at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, she worked in radio production for several years before being captured by the small mountain town of Ohiopyle, Pennsylvania, which she considers her home base. After a few wonderful years on the rivers and trails of West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Maryland, she swapped coasts and has been catching up on all Montana has to offer. She spends a lot of time pitching half-baked biking trips to her unsuspecting friends and family members. Her three siblings are her heroes and always-game adventure pals.
Top photo by Greg Siple