Advocacy,  Bicycle Champion Award,  Capital Area Greenbelt

Diane Kripas – Bicycle Champion Award 2023

Diane Kripas spent her career supporting local trail groups and tirelessly advocating for critical projects, connecting trail networks, and growing interagency coordination at the state level.

She mentored many DCNR staff and taught the ins and outs of the state system for planning and funding trails, parks, and outdoor recreation.

She, Justin Leyman from PA Department of Health, and Roy Gothie, who was the PennDOT Statewide Bicycle/Pedestrian Coordinator at the time, organized a first of a kind meeting with three Department Secretaries and 2 Deputy Secretaries from four agencies to highlight the value of outdoor activity. And with her guidance, interlaced three agency 5-year plans to support equity, health, outdoor recreation, and active transportation.

And Diane tirelessly worked to coordinate property acquisition issues with Pa’s 67 railroads and PennDOT staff.

After her retirement, Diane continued to be active with CAGA, the Capital Area Greenbelt Association, she was instrumental in developing the Veterans Park Trail from Veterans Park to Andrea Avenue, making easy access to Progress Avenue. After 15 years, the Tour de Belt event needed fresh leadership, Diane stepped up and agreed to be a co-chair, bringing much needed reorganization by forming a rock-solid committee, creating a multi-tier sponsorship program with three prime sponsors. Under her leadership the event has grown to close to 1,000 riders. CAGA by-laws initially did not provide for a board of directors, she joined the committee. The result was the formation of 15-member board and 5-member executive committee. After thirty-five years in existence, Diane, for the first time, orchestrated a joint meeting of all 5 municipalities, Dauphin County, Capital Regional Water, and other stakeholders. This has resulted in Memorandums of Understanding between CAGA, and the communities served by the Greenbelt. Diane has become a key elected member of the CAGA Board of Directors with a focus on Grant Writing and submissions for targeted sections in need of improvement.

Dick Norford, CAGA Board member, Roy Gothie, Diane Kripas and Justin Leyman
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