Leaders in Grand Rapids 2014

Staff & Leaders


Image of Caeli Quinn

Caeli Quinn

Co-Founder and Executive Director

Caeli graduated from Northwestern University and then hit the road on two wheels. After running a backcountry refuge next to a glacier in Patagonia, her interest in languages and culture led to ten years traveling the globe, working for Backroads, the active travel company. After her experience bicycling through China and Myanmar, Caeli turned her attention to active transportation and environmental issues. Inspired to promote understanding and to help drive philanthropic impact for sustainability, she co-founded Climate Ride. Caeli resides in Montana with her family, near Glacier National Park.

Image of Blake Holiday

Blake Holiday

National Events Director

Blake has been in love with the bicycle since he was a kid riding on his blue beach cruiser. Since then, he's pedaled all over the world as a bike tour leader. Blake has a strong affinity for the arts, entertainment, the environment, and building community. He has headed up many organizations the world over, with experience in corporate development, strategic marketing and event management. In 2005, he won First Night International's prestigious Prism Award for Creative Excellence for his vision and commitment. He holds a degree in Communications from Loyola Marymount University.

Image of Michelle Levitus

Michelle Levitus

Office Manager

Michelle grew up in the suburbs of Minneapolis before moving out west to Montana. After earning her bachelor’s degree in business management from the University of Montana, she joined Climate Ride as the office assistant and trip leader. Ever the quick study, Michelle soon took on the role of Hiker Manager and Beneficiary Manager, helping to manage our expanding Beneficiary Program. Michelle lives in Missoula, Montana where she enjoys all the area has to offer: rafting the rivers, great farmers markets, snowboarding and hiking in the mountains, and mostly flat bike commutes.

Image of Patrick Colleran

Patrick Colleran

Logistics and Rider Manager

Patrick has organized the logistics for Climate Ride for over three years. His work at Climate Ride blends his love for bicycles and his passion for sustainability. He is over half way to riding his bike in every state and enjoys tending to his small yet growing herd of steel framed bicycles. 

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Russ Mendivil

Rider Representative, Fundraising Guru

Russ is a native Californian who has been involved with cycling and fundraising for the past ten years! He's ridden his bike from San Francisco to Los Angeles three times, but his favorite ride is around Lake Tahoe. Russ recently moved from the Bay Area to Sacramento and is just starting to learn the bike trails in his new town. He raises chickens, grows vegetables and is currently working on turning his home into a mini sustainable farm. Russ was married on Earth Day many (many) years ago and is now a grandpa who wants to leave a better planet for his grandchildren.

Image of Emily Kern

Emily Kern

Participant and Office Coordinator

Emily is part gypsy with a green thumb. After completing her own self-supported cross-country bicycle tour in 2011, she found bicycling matched both her desires for movement and community. Originally from Salt Lake City, Utah, she earned a degree in landscape architecture from Colorado State University before moving to Montana and discovering Climate Ride. Encouraged by her passion for living sustainably, Emily completed a permaculture internship on Orcas Island, Washington, raises chickens and grows her own food. Keep an eye out for her watercolors and genuine grin on Climate Rides and Hikes!


The Climate Ride leaders have strong backgrounds in bike, travel, and guiding industries. Their professionalism, passion and hard work make the Climate Ride experience unforgettable. Climate Ride simply couldn't happen without the people who work night and day to ensure that all the details of the ride are taken care of so the riders can focus on pedaling the miles and creating an impact.

Here are just a few of the many talented individuals that make Climate Ride happen: 

Liz Smith

Climate Ride Leader

Liz has worked with Climate Ride since 2009. She's assisted on route-planning trips, and joined us on 4 rides as a filmmaker, EMT and leader. When Liz isn't on Climate Ride, she's leading the Conservation Media Group as Director & Chief of Operations, building capacity for the use of video to make significant change in sustainable energy and ocean conservation. She's spent more than a decade enabling scientists and conservationists to more effectively share their stories with the general public. She spent the last seven years working in ocean exploration and has worked aboard research vessels in the Pacific Ocean, the Caribbean and the Mediterranean. Prior to working in ocean conservation, Liz produced films about astrophysics and earth science at NASA. She holds an MFA in Science and Natural History Filmmaking from Montana State and a degree in Astronomy from Whitman College. She is currently a Fulbright Scholar and member of American MENSA. She is also certified as an Advanced and Rescue Scuba Diver, a single-engine private pilot and a wilderness EMT. Liz is originally from San Francisco, California and she has mostly lived nomadically. Her current anchorage is Camden, Maine.

Rose Weggler

Climate Ride Leader

Spending her summers growing up on a small lake in Maine ten miles from the ocean and close to mountains, Rose has utilized the outdoors as her playground from a young age. She graduated from the University of Vermont in 2008 with a degree in Recreation Management and Sustainable Tourism in the Rubinstein School of Natural Resources. Since then Rose has worked at an eco-resort in the Caribbean, worked on a farm and traveled in Patagonia, South America, and has worked as crew on sailboats in Maine, finding herself on a few boat deliveries to and from the Caribbean. In the spring of 2011 she became certified as a registered Maine Sea Kayak Guide, guiding in Maine and then in Central California for a few years. Rose is enthusiastic and thoroughly enjoys sharing her love for and knowledge of the environment on all her guiding trips. Currently she is a certified ski instructor for the Vail corporation in Breckenridge Colorado during the winter. During the other months when she's not doing Climate Ride she's guiding bike tours in California for Central Coast Outdoors or participating in other bike charities including the Trek Across Maine. 

Ian Heimlich

Climate Ride Mechanic

Ian specializes in a wide range of bicycle related consulting services. He founded Bike Curious SF which is a bicycle friendly workplace consulting service based in the San Francisco Bay Area. He helps businesses design and implement comprehensive growth oriented solutions to bring more bicycles, bike infrastructure and bike education to the workplace. His clients include medium to large businesses, bike shops, tour and travel companies as well as private clients. Ian has been a professional bicycle mechanic, bike commuter, bicycle educator and all around bicycle advocate for over 15 years. As a mechanic he has traveled and worked in most of the United States including Hawaii and Alaska as well as a 3-month stint wrenching in Southern France. He has bike toured and bike traveled in California, Thailand, Hungary, France, Slovakia, Poland, Peru, Brazil and Chile. Ian lives in Oakland, CA now but he is from all three coasts. Ian travels every chance he gets and most of his journeys take him to Central and South America. He is a photographer and shoots active travel, weddings, artist and creative portraits as well as product: www.ianheimlich.com is his photo website.

Tommaso Boggia

Climate Ride Food Crew

Tommaso rode the first Climate Ride in '08 and surprisingly made it all the way to D.C. Because he loves food much more than he loves riding his bike, he joined the Climate Ride Food Crew and has prepared lunches for 7 rides so far. When not optimizing food buy spreadsheets or preparing bean salads for hungry riders, Tommaso works on opening a grocery store in Oakland's Jack London neighborhood, lives on a sailboat, and geeks out on urban planning and sustainable economic development.

Dylan Cembaslki

Climate Ride Leader

Dylan grew up exploring the mountains of Montana and running around the office of Adventure Cycling Association where his mother is the Director of Routes and Mapping. Fueled by an early love for the outdoors, he embarked on his first self-supported mountain bike tour at the age of 12 and through high school continued to ride sections of the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route. After graduating from the University of Montana with a degree in geology, he moved to Washington state to pursue an interest in mountain guiding. In the winter you can find him at Crystal Mountain training avalanche rescue dogs as a professional ski patroller. In the summer, he guides for Alpine Ascents International in the Northwest and Alaska. When not climbing up or skiing down a mountain, he enjoys riding bikes and contributing to the mission of Climate Ride.

Sara Cohen

Climate Ride Leader

Sara is from Maine originally, but has lived in the Pacific Northwest for ten years. Sara works as a mountain guide for International Mountain Guides leading climbs up peaks in the Cascades and Andes. In the winters, Sara also works as a professional ski patroller at Crystal Mountain in Washington. Here, she is the program coordinator for Crystal's Avalanche Rescue Dog Program, wrangling a team of ten working dogs, two of whom she handles directly. Sara has also been involved in training assistance dogs for a range of applications, but primarily for placement with veterans with PTSD. When not in the mountains or playing with one of her own three dogs, Sara loves as much time on her road bike as she can get. Sara's passion is anything involving one or more components of the trifecta of happiness: beer, bikes, and dogs.

Joe Pearce

Climate Ride Leader

Joe grew up in Fayetteville, GA. While not working on the luggage crew for the past 6 Climate Rides he has been guiding on the middle and north forks of the Flathead River outside of Glacier National Park, he has worked as a downhill mountain bike patroller, and in the events department at Whitefish Mountain Resort in Whitefish, MT. Joe also has a degree in Outdoor Education, and has worked as a mountain bike guide/instructor outside of Asheville, NC. Due to the seasonal nature of his employment, in the offseason he has worked on various projects including working on an episode of ABC's The Bachelor and building a chairlift for Whitefish Mountain Resort.

Natalie Serle

Climate Ride Leader

Natalie grew up in Ohio, played field hockey at Cornell University, and after a short stint on a ranch in Montana became an Event Coordinator for the Disney Endurance series, the Ironman World Championship, and a slew of other high profile national and international endurance events. She quit corporate life to cycle from Providence, RI to Seattle, WA and the next summer rode from Charleston, SC to Santa Cruz, CA. Currently, she is a Program Director at Bike & Build - a national non-profit that organizes cross-country cycling trips to raise money and awareness for affordable housing groups. Executing Bike & Build’s eight cross-country trips and two three-week regional rides includes everything from trip logistics, to managing team dynamics, to an arsenal of other apt business jargon aces one can find on the local buzzword dartboard. Natalie believes that bikes create a near palpable combination of grounding expansiveness and she loves being involved with organizations that harness that power.