Staff


CicLAvia’s passionate team works to open streets across Los Angeles, turning them into public parks for people to play, learn, and connect.

The CicLAvia Team

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Romel Pascual - Executive Director

Romel has been a key figure at CicLAvia from the start. As Deputy Mayor for Energy and Environment during the administration of former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, his leadership at the city helped the organization and the event gain traction within the city in CicLAvia’s fledgling years. Romel successfully merged the mayor’s vision and CicLAvia’s mission to help create what is now a city institution that transforms communities throughout the region.

Prior to being named executive director in 2015, Romel served on the CicLAvia board and was actively involved in the expansion of the organization.

Romel has a masters degree in urban planning and has a long history championing environmental, energy, sustainability and social justice issues in both the non-profit and the public sector. He was the first Assistant Secretary of Environmental Justice under former California Governor Gray Davis. He led the environmental justice program at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 9 - Western U.S., Hawaii and the Pacific Territories. @romelpascual_la

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Alex Merlino - Director of Finance

Alex oversees all financial aspects of the organization and leads development of branded merchandise. Born and raised in Los Angeles, Alexandra is an entrepreneur and nonprofit executive with more than 15 years experience growing small businesses and nonprofit enterprises. She has launched and managed organizations and businesses focused on sustainability, economic development, consumer products and community. @tereskids

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Rachel Burke - Director of Production

As the director of production, Rachel is in charge of implementing all the logistics before, during and after a CicLAvia event. Rachel works closely with city departments to ensure a successful and safe CicLAvia. She also works closely with the community to make sure that their input is considered and with community partners to produce programs for CicLAvia.

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Tafarai Bayne - Strategist

Tafarai is a Los Angeles native with extensive experience in the following areas: communications, promotion and outreach, constituency building, stakeholder education, project management, program development, marketing, and event production. He is considered a leader in strategic planning & community organizing issues and has worked on development and urban planning issues for over 13 years with an emphasis on the dynamics impacting working class communities. He has extensive organizational development experience having served on the board of Strategic Actions for a Just Economy during a critical executive transition and he recently served on the Board of CicLAvia, having helped spearhead expansion efforts into South Los Angeles. In 2014 he was appointed as a commissioner to the City of Los Angeles Transportation Commission. Tafarai is also the founder of EMH Creative Group, a consulting firm focused on strategic planning, communications and production. @tafarai

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Annette Lanzarotta - Production Manager

Annette has been producing CicLAvia events since its inception in 2010. As producer, she's key in the planning, logistics, strategizing, and execution of CicLAvia events and programs. Annette also manages mitigation efforts on behalf of CicLAvia for impacted areas along each route. As a native Angeleno, she's always trying to see new sides of her city - a typical weekend consists of walking to a restaurant in Cypress Park, biking to jazz night in Chinatown, and taking the Metro to sushi and a movie in Pasadena!

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Evanne Holloway - Outreach & Volunteer Coordinator

Evanne recruits, trains and manages all volunteers required for day-of and outreach efforts prior to the event. She also leads the on-the-ground outreach team in conducting notification to stakeholders along the route. Evanne's background is in law and strategy related to location, relocation, and expansion of the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. She believes that little things can create big change, and is active with projects that focus on the viability of California's communities. Evanne began volunteering with CicLAvia in 2017. @evanneholloway

 

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David Woon - Accounting Assistant

David assists the Director of Finance in fulfilling the financial duties of the organization. As an avid walker and public transit user David loves to explore neighborhoods across Los Angeles, sampling the city’s vibrant cultures through food, art, and urban design. In June 2016 he learned how to ride a bike in front of the La Kretz Innovation Campus!

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Juan Torres - Outreach Lead

Juan first volunteered for CicLAvia in the summer of 2015, and has been hooked ever since. He is very enthusiastic about joining the team and being part of the open streets events happening all over LA region. He currently attends Cal State Northridge, and is majoring in Environmental and Occupational Health. Juan is also a Peer Health Educator for Peer Health Exchange at CSUN. He enjoys skating and riding his bike in his free time.

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Gabriel Bang - Outreach Lead

Gabe is a California guy through and through, by way of Los Angeles to the Central Valley, then Northern California, and finally back to Los Angeles. His love of bikes is rooted from his days as an undergrad at UC Davis, which has the most bikes per capita in the country;but his love of open streets is rooted since his first CicLAvia in 2013. Gabe has a diverse work history, which includes education, fashion and hospitality. He also manages to play a diversified role with CicLAvia as he assists with production, outreach and social media efforts.

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Amanda Duddles - Production Assistant/ Outreach Lead

Amanda recently graduated from UC Berkeley with a degree in urban studies and sustainable design. She began interning with CicLAvia in May of 2017 because of her passion to increase bicycle usage and to create more public open spaces. Originally from Los Angeles, Amanda is excited to be back home to help make the city she loves a healthier and more sustainable place to live.

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Mareshah "MJ" Jackson - Office Assistant/ Outreach Lead

Mareshah "MJ" Jackson began volunteering with CicLAvia in the beginning of 2016; and no, she is not related to Janet, though she wishes she was. She holds a Communications degree from UCLA and a professional background in health and education programming. She also writes, and has contributed to the Twigg How-To Guide and the Center For American Progress Action Fund. 

MJ hails from Virginia, and considers herself to have three different hometowns due to her military upbringing. In her free time, she practices Samba, explores LA neighborhoods on foot, and spends too much of her time and resources at local bookstores and coffee shops. If you ask MJ, bookstores should be the new liquor stores. 
You'll probably run into her on your side of town.