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Meet Spencer Polk, BikeMN’s new Communications and Advocacy Intern

My name is Spencer, and I am happy to be joining BikeMN as a communications and advocacy intern. Over the years, biking has become an integral part of my life and I am excited about the opportunity to support Minnesota communities in advancing inclusive biking as a people-friendly, fun, and ecological way to move, connect, explore, and live. I am excited to be in a role promoting events, initiatives, education, and policy across the state working towards both a collective and personal vision of making communities stronger, healthier, safer, and more enjoyable places to live for everyone. 

Growing up, I was lucky enough to live next to the Military Ridge Bike Trail. I loved riding out into the rolling countryside of southwestern Wisconsin or into downtown Madison for some ice cream along the lakes. After catching a glimpse of the biking opportunities in the Twin Cities on a college visit, I decided to move to St. Paul in 2016 to attend the University of St. Thomas where I studied Geography, Justice and Peace Studies, and German. During this time, the importance of biking in my life accelerated as I biked across the country, became a campus bike ambassador, and developed a career interest in the intersection of transportation with public health, equity, justice, and community building, helping publish a book highlighting the intersections of transportation and social justice in the Twin Cities with one of my classes. During undergrad, I also spent 5 months living in Berlin, Germany taking in the radical bike culture and activism happening there. After catching a glimpse of what our cities and systems could be like, I returned to the U.S. with greater fervor and hope to work on issues of urban sustainability and transportation.

I am excited to be joining the BikeMN team with a diverse background in everything from supporting legislative work, voter engagement, disaster response, and food justice – to refugee/immigrant entrepreneurship, water resource protection, and political organizing – as I set out to pursue a masters degree in urban and regional planning this fall.

I passionately love where I live in South Minneapolis, being active in the bike, music, and dance communities, where I help lead community bike rides as a member of the Fulton Racing team, serve on the Minneapolis Southside Greenzone Council, and play viola in a band. In addition to music and dance, I am also passionate about documenting different moments and places through photography.