El Grupo is run by a growing group of passionate, engaged individuals who care about youth, being active and healthy, and the community.
Sean PantellereExecutive Director
Gord FraserHead Coach
Gord brings a lifetime of experience in the world of cycling, first as a competitor, then as a coach, and most recently for the past decade directing pro-cycling teams as they competed across the globe. He raced with the Canadian Olympic team in 1996, 2000, and 2004, and raced in the Tour de France in 1997. Gord is no stranger to Tucson and El Grupo; both his sons were in the Grupito pilot program. “I want to teach the youth on Team El Grupo the passion for the bike that I’ve enjoyed in my 40 plus years dedicated to the sport,” said Gord. “Whether kids like to race, tour, bike pack, or mountain bike, there’s a place for them in the Team El Grupo Program.”
Morgan AdamsGrupito Coordinator
I’m an Arizona native, dad, and bike rider/advocate. My bike racing days go all the way back to the early ‘70’s where my first race was at PXA (Phoenix) BMX on my big wheel! I’ve pretty much been obsessed with bikes and racing since that day. My academic education consists of a microbiology degree from NAU, but I only really remember all those Sedona-Flagstaff trails. In 2003 my family moved away from Tucson, then moved back in 2011. I learned about El Grupo and wanted to get involved, but the timing was wrong. Now the timing is right between my family and the start of El Grupito. I love coaching the El Grupito riders! I’m always so impressed with their natural abilities and enthusiasm. I hope to help kids learn to love all things about cycling and believe El Grupo is providing a valuable framework for that goal.
Allison ArensmanTeam El Grupo Coach
Lynn HudsonGrupito Coach
I am a Grupito Coach, physical educator, graduated form the University of Arizona, and long time bike mechanic! I love anything with wheels and enjoy sharing my passion for bike riding with others, especially youth. Arrived in Tucson in 1999 and fell in love with the desert through cycling. Cycling has taking me many places over the years and made many friends along the way. I now get to share these experiences with my two children through El Grupito and work along side El Grupo! Mountain biking, road biking, BMX, commuting, and anything else bike related is a great way to instill positive life long habits in the youth and El Grupo/Grupito is the way!
Luke MurrayBikepacking Coordinator
Luke Murray is a born and raised Tucsonan whose been a part of the El Grupo team since the end of 2010 when he joined as a rider in high school. For the last seven years he has dedicated himself to cycling advocacy and education both inside and outside of El Grupo. Luke is the cycling elective teacher at City High School, an actor with Stories that Soar, a musician, and an artist who pursues a life of growth and happiness by sharing his passion for exercise and the arts with everyone he encounters.
Colter ThomasBike Club Coordinator
Colter is an accomplished photojournalist, having worked on numerous political campaigns and embedded in Mexico during the migrant crisis. By the age of 19, his work had been featured in national publications. His first real taste of independence came from El Grupo, joining the team at age 12, he very quickly became obsessed with the freedom the bicycle provides. After deciding he needed a break from the stresses of photojournalism, Colter found himself back at El Grupo as a volunteer. Now he leads El Grupo’s Bike Club program and wishes to provide others with the same opportunities that made him who he is today. Passionate about the bicycle as both a tool of transportation and empowerment, he is super excited to be a part of El Grupo and help it grow!
Dava VarelaBike Club Coach
Karen ChildressAdministrative Assistant/Bookkeeper
Karen moved to Tucson in 2018 with plans to retire. It turned out she wasn’t tired enough to retire, but didn’t want to do a 9-5 gig or start another business. Instead, she decided part-time work in an organization with a strong mission would offer the right balance of work and leisure life. Karen happily landed a position at El Grupo in late 2019. More yogi and hiker than big-time cyclist, she can still occasionally be found on The Loop riding her purple cruiser.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Lisa Anne Trudinger-Smith, Board ChairManaging Shareholder, DeConcini McDonald Yetwin & Lacy, P.C.
I still remember the great 10 speed bike I got when I was about 10 years old. I remember how much I loved that bike and the freedom that it gave me to ride all over the place and spend long summer days exploring the creeks and candy stores of my hometown. Riding a bike years later in Boston as I commuted to and from work made me feel like some kind of an urban warrior, fighting for my life among the crazy cars out there on the road. Then I found myself living in Tucson without a car for a couple of years and getting everywhere on my bike. Around the time I turned forty, I learned to swim and became a mediocre triathlete. I’m no longer a kid, a car-free student, or a triathlete; I’m a mother of three and a lawyer and I get most of my exercise in my garage-gym. But I still feel freedom when I get on my bike and ride. I’m happy to be a part of El Grupo to make that same joy available to the young people of Tucson!
Marc Fleischman, CPA, Board Vice ChairCEO, BeachFleischman
Riding bicycles, living healthy and supporting our youth are aspects of life that are very important to me, and any organization with a mission that combines all three has my support. Our goal with El Grupo is to empower underprivileged youth to become the next generation of active and community-minded cycling enthusiasts and leaders in Tucson. When I’m not cycling, I’m working in my role as CEO of BeachFleischman PC, where I lead a team of community-minded professionals who collaborate with businesses, individuals and organizations to save taxes, preserve wealth, improve accountability, achieve compliance and enhance profitability. Working in public accounting since 1976, I have extensive experience helping small to medium-sized businesses throughout the various stages of their development. I also specialize in litigation support services, including mediation, business valuations, damage calculations, financial consulting and taxation issues in domestic relations matters. I’m a University of Arizona graduate and a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and Arizona Society of Certified Public Accountants. I am also actively involved with the Tucson Jewish Community Center and a board member of Sun Corridor Inc.
Doug Friman, JD, Board SecretaryAttorney at Law
Bio and photo coming soon.
Don Hubman, Board TreasurerPresident and COO, BroadPath
I moved to Tucson in 2009 and immediately fell in love with the weather and outdoor lifestyle. Endurance sports such as cycling and running have always been a part of my life and through the cycling community in Tucson I discovered the awesomeness of the El Grupo mission. Sports and outdoor activity have been fundamental in forming my character and I believe have played a major role in the successes I have had. I therefore support groups that use physical activity to help youth find their way in life. My career started in Manufacturing Engineering in Pennsylvania, and I have progressed through various stages of technical consulting, sales and business management over the years. As such I bring what skills and experience I can to the El Grupo board.
Nathanial Cross, Youth RepresentativeEl Grupo Team Member and Student
I am a bike lover and rider on Team El Grupo and have been with the team since 2016, when my 11-year-old self showed up to Summer Bike Camp on a bike that was way too small. Since that day, I have grown so much both on and off the bike from all of the amazing coaches and teammates who have helped keep on riding after every time I’ve fallen off. El Grupo has taught me how to persevere, communicate, and balance my life. I’ll use these lessons (and more!) throughout my life – from high school to college to the workplace and beyond. In addition, I’ve made many lifelong friends, learned to suffer and push myself, realized how much I can achieve and how to set and reach goals for myself. When I’m not at Grupo practice riding with my friends, I’m usually riding with my dad. One of my favorite places to ride is in the Sierra Nevadas, up Mt. Whitney, because…… . Cycling is one of my favorite things to do and I’m glad I do it with El Grupo.
Katie Bates, DO, Member at LargeCardiologist, Carondelet Medical Group
Bio and photo coming soon.
Paul Durham, Member at LargeRetired Attorney, Tucson City Council Member
Within 48 hours of finishing my first bar exam, I was on a plane from Seattle to London to begin a two-month solo bike touring trip from London to Athens. I really didn’t know what I was doing, but I had read some books on the subject! I’ve loved cycling all my life and bike touring since that first long trip. I’m a former business transactions and securities lawyer, living in Tucson since 2004. After a much more recent bike touring trip in 2012 from Vancouver, BC to Tucson via the Pacific coast, I resolved to make a greater contribution to cycling in my home town and support the next generation of Tucson cyclists by joining the El Grupo Board. I am one of many adults who regret that there was no organization like El Grupo in my community when I was a kid.
Linda Fahey, Member at LargePresident, Dark Horse Media
Linda’s extensive experience prior to establishing Dark Horse Media encompasses many areas of the advertising agency business, working for agencies and media outlets in Las Vegas, Phoenix and Tucson. Additionally, Linda has held corporate marketing positions with Helen of Troy, Castle Park Entertainment and Chuck E. Cheese, complimenting Linda’s well-rounded portfolio of event marketing, strategic planning, advertising campaign planning and community relations abilities. Linda acquired her BBA in Marketing from the University of Texas at El Paso in 1981. Linda has been cycling for 15 years, participating in and even winning a few races in Arizona. Prior to cycling Linda was involved in numerous sports, most notably she attended university on a tennis scholarship, was a teaching pro and even played in a few pro tennis tournaments.
Brenda Kazen, Member at LargeCounselor, Rincon High School
Growing up on the far Northeast side of Tucson, riding a bike was the only way to go anywhere. I loved the freedom of riding “into town” and buying an ice cream or going to the mall. As an adult I rediscovered cycling by commuting to work. A friend convinced me to buy a road bike and spandex and . . . here I am. I learned of El Grupo and the wonderful work we do through my involvement with Ride On Cycling. As a high school counselor, I firmly support the mission of El Grupo and the values and work ethic our students gain by participating in the program. I often say the most important lesson students can learn in high school is perseverance. El Grupo teaches this every single day. I cannot think of a better organization for our youth than El Grupo.
Kim Watkinson, Member at LargePremier Banker, Walls Fargo
Bio and photo coming soon.