Joele Guynup, Director of Athlete and Mentor Coordination (Vancouver Island)
Ride Like a Girl was developed by Amber Zirnhelt to support up and coming young female mountain bike athletes. Amber is a competitive cyclist, and motivational speaker with the National Esteem Team. She is a former pro-elite downhill mountain bike racer that raced nationally and at World Cup events, and a community planner passionate about environmental sustainability. When not on her bike, Amber can be found sailing, skiing, or exploring the outdoors with her family.
Carolyn is an accomplished downhill and freeride mountain biker who hails from Whistler, BC. A founder of the Women's Freeride Network, Carolyn is actively involved in promoting the growth of the sport and encouraging female athletes to push their boundaries on their bike. When not shredding the local downhill trails or bike park, Carolyn can be found behind the lens shooting photos and video, building trails, mentoring young riders, skiing (during the off season) or working at her day job as a nurse.
Carolyn Kavanagh, Director of Media Development
Lisa Ludwig, Director of Mentor and Athlete Activities
Ride Like a Girl's board members are all avid mountain bikers, passionate about encouraging the growth of the sport and the development of young athletes. The board is committed to providing a first-class mentorship program for BC athletes to help break down barriers to girls' participation in competitive mountain biking.
Amber Zirnhelt, Chair
Karin Grubb, Director of Athlete and Mentor Coordination (Sea to Sky)
Karen was brought up in the world of cycling with a brother who raced on the pro circuit for years. Karen chose to take a more casual approach to racing a number of local mtb races, BC Cup races, adventure races & running races over the years. Karen started at BC Bike Race in 2011 and has been there for 9 years as the marketing manager & retail buyer. She has a Marketing Communications diploma from BCIT, and an Adventure Tourism Diploma from Capilano College and 15 years of experience in the Tourism, Sports & Retail Marketing Sectors. When she’s not looking after & hanging out with her 3 kids you can find her riding her bike, running on the North Shore trails, traveling with her bike or skiing in the winter. Her entrepreneurial drive has helped her launch, develop, grow & sell three businesses over the past 10 years. Now her passion lies in fundraising to help causes that are near & dear to her heart.
As a previous elite athlete in rowing and cycling, Lisa noticed a void in mentoring for developing athletes. Cue a dinner party, where she met Amber Zirnhelt and learned of the Ride Like A Girl program. She was inspired by this program because it created opportunities for young female mountain bikers to flourish, share ideas and glean support from an experienced rider who felt compelled to give back. Finding importance in the power of women inspiring women, Lisa felt that the Ride Like a Girl Board of Directors was a good fit for her personal values and she dove in. She looks forward to seeing the 2019 athletes grow and succeed, in part by the support they gain from their mentors.
Connection and community are both important to her, made visible from her time previously volunteering with weekly women's rides in Victoria and Cumberland, and more recently with her time organizing cyclocross races. She used race profits to further mountain biking opportunities for youth in the Comox Valley, knowing that this generation of shredders is a worthwhile investment. To be sure, she sees that youth have the potential to be healthier, productive community members when involved in sport.
Lisa's home base is Cumberland, BC. In her day job, she practices as an occupational therapist and moonlights as a professionally-trained seamstress, making wedding dresses and kids' clothes. But more often than not, you'll find her out and about riding her bike, skiing, and surfing in Tofino with her family.
Karin grew up in Ontario and has called the west coast home for 15 years. Karin has always been involved in sport, but discovered mountain biking when she moved to the west coast and has been involved in the sport since. She has raced xc and enduro and is passionate about the value that mountain biking brings to her life through community, personal challenge and appreciation for the outdoors. Karin has been involved in ride leading and has been an ambassador for women in mountain biking and loves seeing others challenge themselves in mountain biking to find confidence, personal growth and break their own barriers both in and out of sport. Karin works as a lawyer for a municipality and calls North Vancouver, and its beautiful trails, home.
After having lived and worked in many parts of the province Sarah settled in Cumberland in 2012, where she became involved with the local weekly women's mountain bike rides and mountain bike racing. Sarah has raced on the Island Cup Circuit in enduro and cross country, although she likes to do it non-competitively. Sarah has volunteered with the Sun Peaks and Salmo ski patrol, as event coordinator for Mount Cain, and at numerous local mountain bike races. She also co-founded the Mount Cain women's backcountry weekend as a way for women to gain more backcountry skills and experience. When not working behind a desk or out in a remote part of the province as a forester, Sarah can be found on her road or mountain bike, backcountry or cross-country skiing, hiking and going on outdoor adventures with her husband and daughter.
Joele grew up skiing, wakeboarding, and playing basketball in Northern California, but found mountain biking after moving to BC to attend University of Victoria. She is a former Elite CX and XC racer who now races CX, XC, and Enduro on a casually competitive level. She has been active in voluteering for local CX races on the island and has experienced through her own life the power and importance of sport and community. She joined RLG in 2021 to support bringing sport and community together through the RLG mentorship program.
In her day job, Joele is a sales rep for Santa Cruz, Juliana, and Cervelo and spends her free time (if she isn’t on a bike) snowboarding, surfing, or planning her next adventure.
Treasurer - Vacant
Sarah Falloon, Secretary
Karen Stark, Director of Fundraising