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Innovations in Transit 2017: Ten Talks

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Date and time
Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Boston's **[LivableStreets Alliance](http://www.livablestreets.info/ "")** envisions a world where streets are safe, vibrant public spaces that connect people to the places where they live, work and play. Here is their annual "StreetTalk 10-in-1", where 10 innovative transportation and community thinkers take the stage and share their big ideas for transit improvement in lightning rounds.

Mark has lived in the Boston area since 1997, working as a software engineer in Cambridge and Boston. During that time, he has always preferred to get around the city by bicycle, including daily commuting year-round, as well as routine errands throughout North and Mid-Cambridge. In 2014 Mark decided to go car-free, selling his car and embracing the bicycle as his primary mode of travel. He has not regretted the choice for a moment. He believes that bicycling is the most efficient, cleanest, quietest and most enjoyable way to move about the city. Urban spaces that support safe bicycling are also livable spaces that prioritize humans. Bicycling provides equitable mobility and access to all communities, particularly those not well-served by the MBTA. Mark would like to see a complete network of safe bicycle routes connecting all major destinations in the region, because it would encourage ridership of the large number of potential bicyclists who say they would like to ride on city streets, but are too concerned about safety. His desire to see this goal become a reality has motivated him to become involved in advocacy groups such as Cambridge Bicycle Safety and Boston Cyclists Union. When not working or riding one of his five bicycles, Mark enjoys traveling to destinations where bicycling is a mandatory component of the experience.
Annie Tuan started cycling in the city after being encouraged to by a roommate and fell in love with how freeing it was. She was one of many who were galvanized to get involved after two tragedies in Cambridge. As she learned more about the issues, she was amazed by how even small infrastructure changes could reduce the potential for and severity of crashes. She ultimately wants to see a full network built out that will allow anyone interested to ride safely and comfortably.
Alice is managing a comprehensive study of passenger ferry service in the harbor and working to promote and expand water transportation options. She previously lived and breathed Go Boston 2030 (the citywide mobility plan) and mapped the initial plan for the LivableStreets’ Emerald Network (a web of interconnected walking and biking paths in Greater Boston). She has degrees in math, philosophy, teaching, and urban planning. She enjoys leading unconventional tours, curating events calendars, and reading the NYTimes magazine.
Tiffany Cogell is an advocate for Active Transit equity, community organizer, Founder of Truth Food Prep, creator of Truth Serum Detox Teas, Nutrition Coach and Fitness Equity Advocate. As a social and racial justice advocate, Tiffany is currently co-designing a Resident-led Consultancy called "Bridging Communities". A consultancy that fosters co-creation among communities of color and organizations for breakthrough solutions to cultivate capabilities, opportunities for growth and sustainability toward Beloved Community metro wide. A mother of four, interior Designer, and lives in Codman Square.
Angela Johnson is the Transportation Justice Organizer at Transportation for Massachusetts. Her role involves working with T4MA members and community based organizations to promote equitable access to transportation and to help ensure fairness and opportunity as technology transforms mobility.
Kathryn Carlson joined A Better City in August 2017 as the Director of Transportation. In this role, she directs the transportation research and policy agendas for the organization as well as oversees the two Transportation Management Associations (TMAs). Prior to joining A Better City, Kathryn founded Buca Boot LLC, a bicycle product company and invented their flagship product, the Buca Boot, a patented bike-mounted storage system that won Inc. Magazine’s “Best In Class” Design Award in 2015.
Andrew McFarland is the Community Engagement Manager for LivableStreets, coordinating communications, events, and outreach around Vision Zero, Better Buses, and a growing roster of street projects and initiatives. Drawing on diverse experiences with the New York City Department of Transportation’s Public Engagement Unit, the Brooklyn-based arts collective the Silent Barn, and as a producer for Slideluck, Andrew brings strong public engagement know-how and a creative lens to LivableStreets.
Jay Monty is the Transportation Planner for the City of Everett, and has over a decade of experience in planning, engineering, and transportation. Prior to joining the City of Everett, he worked for Volpe National Transportation Center, holding the title of Transportation Planner/ Analyst. Jay has extensive background in analysis and design software as well as qualitative and quantitative research and analytical and technical writing. Jay is a graduate of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, where he secured a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering and a Masters of Arts in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning from Tufts University.
Vivian grew up in El Paso, TX and is a resident of Boston’s Mattapan neighborhood. You can find her spreading the word about great things in Mattapan on twitter @mattapanviv. Vivian is Coordinator for the Let's Get Healthy, Boston! project for Mattapan Food and Fitness Coalition in conjunction with the Boston Alliance for Community Health and the Boston Public Health Commission.
Lee grew up in Boston and Milton. When living in Allston, he was too terrified to learn how to bike because of the steep hills and busy streets. But then in West Roxbury and Milton, he had no choice but to bike if he wanted to get anywhere. Today he is a medical device development engineer living and working in car-centric suburbia. For the past fourteen years he has advocated for people-friendly routes as a member of the Milton Bicycle Advisory Committee and the Neponset River Greenway Council, and earlier this year joined the Milton Traffic Commission to speak up for safe streets. When not at work or sitting in community meetings, Lee can sometimes be found biking on the trails of the Emerald Network and beyond, ranging as far afield as Worcester County, Rhode Island and Connecticut.
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation is an integrated, multi-modal transportation agency composed of Highway, Rail and Transit, and Aeronautics Divisions, as well as a Registry of Motor Vehicles. The Department of Transportation is led by Secretary and CEO Stephanie Pollack, who also sits on the Board of the Massachusetts Port Authority. Pollack has been Secretary of Transportation and CEO of MassDOT since 2015. As Secretary, Pollack has led efforts to establish project selection criteria and set investment priorities for a $13 billion, five-year capital plan that focuses on improving reliability for the traveling public by modernizing Massachusetts’ transportation assets. She has focused MassDOT on better serving its customers, with initiatives such as All-Electronic Tolling and reducing wait-times at Registry of Motor Vehicles. Since July 2015, the leadership of the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority (MBTA) has also reported to Secretary Pollack, giving her a critical role in steering the ongoing turnaround of greater Boston’s transit system. Before being named Secretary, Pollack worked on transportation policy, finance, and equity as Associate Director for Research at the Kitty and Michael Dukakis Center for Urban and Regional Policy at Northeastern University, where she has also served as an adjunct professor. Her academic work followed a distinguished legal career at the Conservation Law Foundation in Boston. Pollack also spent over a decade providing strategic guidance as a consultant on transportation, equity, and environmental issues to the public, private, and non-profit sectors, both nationally and locally. Pollack received both a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a Bachelor of Science in Public Policy from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a Juris Doctorate from Harvard Law School.
Stefanie and Najah make up one half of the Active Transportation Team within the City of Boston’s Transportation Department. With guidance from residents and the support of Mayor Walsh, Stefanie and Najah created Neighborhood Slow Streets, the City’s first traffic-calming program in more than 15 years. Slow Streets zones are selected through a simple and transparent application process that prioritizes areas with the greatest need. Stefanie and Najah have a long history of working to make streets better for people. Stefanie, previously the deputy director of the National Complete Streets Coalition, helped lead the growth of a national movement for traffic safety and streets designed for people. Najah holds a degree in Planning from MIT but gained most of her experience with cities during her 18 years of living in Philadelphia. As a 5-year-old, she and her neighbors made front-page news by fighting the City of Philadelphia when the City refused to unlock a hydrant. The community won the fight and spent the summer enjoying their street-corner-turned-water-park. Together, Najah and Stefanie share a love of Beyoncé, cat gifs, and the ¯_(ツ)\_/¯ emoticon.
Ngoc-Tran Vu is a 1.5-generation Vietnamese American multimedia and transnational artist whose work draws from her experience as a community organizer and healer. She was born in Saigon, Vietnam and raised in Dorchester and South Boston. Tran received her MA in Arts and Politics at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and her BA in Ethnic Studies and Visual Arts at Brown University. Tran also serves as the Program Director for AIR, Association of Independents in Radio.
Stacy is the Executive Director of LivableStreets, overseeing all programs including Vision Zero, Better Buses, and the Emerald Network, and ensuring overall programmatic and operational excellence for the organization. A relentless optimist, Stacy is undaunted by the many challenges facing Metro Boston today, including increasing access to jobs and affordable housing, improving safety and public health outcomes, and building climate resiliency. Stacy believes that improving our streets isn't simply a transportation issue, but one of justice, equity, and opportunity. Previously Stacy served as the Director of Events & Sponsorship at Ceres, where she developed the strategic focus, content, and communications strategy for Ceres' major events. She also worked for the Office for Peace and Justice at the Archdiocese of Chicago where she collaborated with community partners to organize educational forums and supported a broad array of social justice initiatives. She has a Master of Arts in Social Justice from Loyola University, Chicago and a Bachelor of Arts in Religious Education from Saint Vincent College.