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Forum Spotlight: Lisa Nutter

We are pleased to announce Lisa Nutter, track cyclist and bike advocate, President of Philadelphia Academies, Inc, and First Lady of Philadelphia, to our list of speakers at this year’s National Forum on Women & Bicycling

At the Forum, Nutter will be speaking on a panel focused on gender equity in competitive cycling. She’s joined by Karen Bliss, former professional cyclist and current VP of Marketing for Advanced Sports International, and Nicole Freedman, former Olympic Cyclist and current head of Boston Bikes.

In a recent interview with USA Cycling, Nutter talked about her path to competitive cycling. After wearing her knees down as a runner, a friend suggested she take up cycling for fitness. 

“You don’t need a team such as football or baseball to participate,” she told USA Cycling, “and almost anyone can enjoy it. That’s why it’s so important to provide access to bicycles and safe places to ride them.”

She’s now preparing for the 2015 USA Cycling Masters Track National Championships. Through her training and racing, she has also advocated for women in competitive cycling, including promoting equal purse prizes for men and women in competitive racing.

“Establishing equal purse prizes got a lot of attention,” Nutter told USA Cycling, “especially from those who believe that the different distances for men and women should factor into the purse. Neither race is better than the other — they are simply different races.”

And her advocacy extends beyond racing. She has promoted access to bicycling for all Philadelphians, regardless of age, race or class.

“Much of cycling is about access,” Nutter said in the interview. “Some people of color may not have opportunities for equipment or training, or even grow up riding bicycles.” That’s one of the reasons that Nutter and her husband have championed programs to promote bicycling among people of all ages and ethnicities.”

More on Nutter’s background, via Philadelphia Academies, Inc.:

Lisa has a B.S. in Psychology from the Pennsylvania State University and an M.A. in City Planning from the University of Pennsylvania. She also completed a year-long fellowship in the Emerging Leaders Programme administered by the Centre for Leadership and Public Values at the University of Cape Town (South Africa) and Duke University.

Through her work as a practitioner, researcher and consultant in communities throughout the country, Lisa solidified her belief in education as a central factor in both individual and community economic stability. At PAI, Lisa draws on her experience in education, community organizing, human services, community development and arts and culture to promote an educational model that links youth programming to real world opportunities and needs.

As a leader, Lisa encourages organizational self-reflection and planning – again taking practical steps to ensure positive outcomes and a bright future. She brings these ideals to life at PAI and in her active engagement in social change and youth development issues. Lisa is the architect of our career academy citywide expansion strategy as she sees it as a way to change individual and local economies. She also plays a significant visionary and leadership role in the citywide Digital On-Ramps initiative that will support 175,000 learners and job seekers ages 14 to 65.

Photo via USA Cycling