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Future Bike: Chema Hernandez Gil

Chema Hernandez Gil’s background is “in engineering, with a heavy dose of community and media activism.”

A perfect mix for bike advocacy, right? Hernandez Gil is a community organization at the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, using both his engineering and community skills on campaigns for better infrastructure and on a collaborative program that gets reclaimed bicycles into the hands of low-income community members.

Next month, Hernandez Gil will be speaking about community engagement at Future Bike, a half-day forum organized by the League’s Equity Initiative and Women Bike program, taking place in Pittsburgh. Along with other panelists, he’ll be working to answer questions like, “how do we cultivate new models of engagement that are driven by the vision of local residents?”

Hernandez Gil manages the Coalition’s involvement in the Community Bike Build Program, an innovative collaboration between a dozen community groups that is making biking an alternative for everyday transportation for all San Franciscans. 

“Having identified this opportunity, we sat down with PODER (People Organizing to Demand Environmental & Economic Rights) and created the Reclaimed Bike program, which emphasized collaborative, cooperative repair of these bicycles and bicycle safety education. We organized a series of events in the Mission called Community Bike Build Convivios and reached out to other organizations, which adopted the model. In collaboration with groups like PODER and POWER (People Organized to Win Employment Rights), we continue to organize community bike builds in the Mission and the Bayview and facilitate other independent bike builds,” Hernandez Gil said in a recent San Francisco Weekly story.

He has also lead the advocacy campaigns for improved infrastructure in the Tenderloin, SoMa and the eastern half of San Francisco.

Join Hernandez Gil and others on Sept. 11 at Future Bike! Register today.

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