Here’s why I’m excited about the new National Women Bike Campaign organized by the League of American Bicyclists: It’s the first coordinated effort not only to encourage more women to ride bicycles, but also to engage them in leadership  – as advocates, engineers, retailers, manufacturers and policy makers.

So, I’m looking forward to joining hundreds of women leaders from around the country  — as well as an awesome contingent of fellow New Yorkers! — at the National Women’s Cycling Forum on March 4 in Washington, D.C. Building on the momentum of last year’s inaugural meeting in Washington, followed by the National Women’s Cycling Summit in Long Beach, CA in September, the Forum will include a full day of programming featuring a remarkable line-up of speakers and activities. I hope you’ll join me!

Velojoy.com is a proud sponsor of the National Women Bike Campaign.

Women Mean Business

The Forum’s theme, Women Mean Business, highlights the economic impact and the expanding influence of women in a burgeoning movement that recognizes the benefits of health, economy and efficiency that cycling provides.

How great is the potential?

Consider this:  According to the 2012 American Bicyclist Survey, women represent a critical majority for the future of the bicycle movement: 60 percent of bicycle owners aged 18- to 27-years-old are women. In 2012 alone, women reported that they planned to spend nearly $2 billion on bike products.

In addition, more than 80 percent of American women have a positive view of bicyclists and two-thirds think their community would be a better place to live if riding a bike were safer and more comfortable, a recent national poll conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates found.

“Clearly, women mean business when it comes to making biking better in their communities,” says Carolyn Szczepanski, League Director of Communications and Women Bike. “Across the country, women are shattering previous stereotypes and stepping up to design cutting-edge infrastructure, launch innovative advocacy campaigns and take the lead in the bike industry.”

8 Great Reasons to Attend

  • Be inspired: Keynote speakers include Georgena Terry, founder of Terry Precision Cycles, the first brand of bicycles built specifically for women (read our interview with Terry here);  Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), helicopter pilot, Purple Heart recipient, former Assistant Secretary of Veterans Affairs — and hand-crank bicyclist; and Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan, New York City Commissioner of Transportation and architect of NYC’s dramatic rise in bicycling. View the complete line-up.
  • Find community:  A diverse group of women from around the country are converging to focus their creativity, intellect and energy on helping close the gender gap in cycling.
  • Network!: Meet, mingle and forge new connections with women who share a passion for cycling and a commitment to this movement.
  • Gain real-world tools:  Programming presented by experts will help you tell your story, build your business, grow your grass-roots advocacy campaign, launch a women’s ride group and much more.
  • Get the data:  Learn the facts about the economic impact and the possibility of a brighter, healthier future that engaging more women in cycling represents.
  • Celebrate women entrepreneurs! Shop 20 vendors, including Po Campo, Cleverhood, Vespertine, Bird Industries and Cyclofemme. Pop-Up Shop list here.
  • Party: Join Black Women Bike D.C. for a ride and attend a after-party to celebrate the kick-off of the Washington Area Bicyclists Association (WABA) Women & Bicycles Campaign on the Sunday night before the Forum opens. Register here.
  • Super-charge: Forum participants carry the energy and message of Women Mean Business forward into the National Bike Summit to take the message about the benefits of cycling directly to Congress! Register for the National Bike Summit, March 4 – 6.

P.S. Guys are invited, too!

Details and registration:

National Women’s Cycling Forum

Monday, March 4, 9 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.

Renaissance Washington Hotel, 999 9th St. N.W., Washington, D.C.

Tickets $85, includes lunch and childcare. Register here.

Follow on facebook and twitter  and use the hashtag #womenbike!

Photo: Maureen McGinnis

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