As you may know, El Grupo is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and as a nonprofit, we are required by law to have a board of directors that provide oversight on the workings of El Grupo and guide our mission to empower youth through bicycles. You may have seen some of our board’s members occasionally but it is also likely that you have not, board members do not assist in the day to day activities of El Grupo but rather work with the executive director (Daniela) to plan out our future and make sure everything runs smoothly. There are thirteen current board members and they are meticulously selected based on two requirements: knowledge and/or perspective. I‘ll give an example. Marc Fleischman, our current board chair is the CEO of BeachFleischman, which is a tax consulting business. He is vital to El Grupo because he can provide insight to the rest of the Board on how to best conduct our financials, but what Mr. Fleischman cannot do is pass judgment on which race to attend [or how to train]. Simply because this is not his area of expertise, he is complimented by for instance Ignacio, who knows exactly which race to attend but does not hold an accounting degree. Together, each and every board member contributes and helps with the task of guiding El Grupo.

   What is stated above may be something you already know or it may be news to you. Regardless, I am here today to inform you of my position on the board as the youth representative and of an opportunity for someone to join and eventually replace me in the endeavor of guiding the path of El Grupo for the foreseeable future. As the youth representative,  you will provide your perspective on what is needed to best serve the riders of El Grupo to the rest of the board.

   There are a few requirements to fill this role, the first is commitment. The Board meets once a month in the evenings after practice and you must attend as many as possible. On top of that it is necessary that the youth representative is involved in El Grupo, this means attending races and practices and just generally socializing with other riders on the team. (you can’t represent them if you don’t know them) A level of maturity is also expected, being able to conduct yourself in an appropriate manner is necessary. Having one or more years of experience under your belt on the team is preferred but not required. But the most important characteristic that you can have is desire, this should not be seen as another task or job but rather something you may enjoy. (Board members are not paid) Desire alone can make up for any insufficiencies in requirements above. I know I honestly have enjoyed myself these past three years on the board from the spreadsheets to the networking. If I am truly honest, I have not always met the requirements stated above but I have compensated by striving to work on my weaknesses and attempting to stay honest. What is stated above is by no means meant to scare people off but to rather inform them of the undertaking. The point is, this is an opportunity for those that are curious about life and are willing to step out of their comfort zones a little in exchange for a viewpoint that few will ever have. If what I have said speaks to you in any way reach out to Daniela to notify her that you are interested in applying for this position, I promise you won’t regret it.


Cole Lanning


Here is the Youth Board Member Application if you are interested. You can email a completed form to Daniela or leave one on her desk no later than November 26th.