James Davies Will Lead Bublr Bikes
Cycling attorney James Davies succeeds fundraising veteran Sally Sheperdson.
Milwaukee’s bike-sharing system has a new leader.
James Davies will serve as executive director of the non-profit Bublr Bikes. The dock-based system serves Milwaukee, West Allis, Shorewood and Wauwatosa. He succeeds Sally Sheperdson, who has served as executive director since January 2017.
Davies, an attorney and avid cyclist, has worked for the system since 2014. Since January 2017 he’s held the title of “senior director of operations and planning.” The 35-year-old served as a top lieutenant to both Sheperdson and launch director Kevin Hardman.
“The Bublr Board of Directors sees an opportunity to have a big influence on micro-mobility in the Greater Milwaukee area and are thrilled to have James lead us into our next stage of growth,” said Bublr board president and Journey House CEO Michele Bria in a statement. “We are excited about this appointment and look forward to working with James.”
Davies takes the helm of a system that has brought a number of innovations to the dock-based bike sharing community. Bublr unveiled adaptive bikes for those with disabilities earlier this week that integrate directly with the system’s docks. The pilot is the first of its kind in the country.
The system launched a partnership in 2017 with Milwaukee County Transit System known as “Buslr” that created a shared card for use boarding a bus or unlocking a bike. Davies, who worked with MCTS on the initiative, told Urban Milwaukee at the time that Los Angeles invested thousands of dollars creating an interoperable card to integrate its systems. Bublr and MCTS came up with a far simpler solution: putting a sticker on the rear of existing MCTS M-Cards.
The system, which uses B-Cycle bikes from Wisconsin-based Trek, has also begun adding e-bikes that feature an electric motor to provide additional power.
Sheperdson, a fundraising veteran, has not announced what she plans to do next. For more on her role with the bike-sharing system, listen to her May appearance on Urban Milwaukee’s City Beat podcast.
According to the organization’s 2017 tax filing, the last for which a public federal Form 990 is available, Davies and Sheperdson earned similar salaries.
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