BikeWalk NC recognizes Lauren Blackburn, the previous director of the North Carolina Department of Transportation’s Division of Bicycle and Pedestrian Transportation, for her contributions to improving the safety of bicyclists and pedestrians on public roadways. Lauren served as the Division’s director for four years, during which various regional infrastructure plans were developed with the intention of prioritizing access and safety of pedestrians and bicyclists.
Under Lauren’s leadership, the state revised the framework of North Carolina’s Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan to improve various areas of bicycling and pedestrian transportation, including mobility, safety, and the environment. Lauren also promoted comprehensive planning of bicycling/pedestrian infrastructure by leading campaigns such as “Watch for Me” and partnered with the NC Department of Health and Human Services to launch the Active Routes to School program to encourage students to walk and bike to school.
“I learned an incredible amount working with the Department and other staff and leaders within the NCDOT,” said Lauren. “[There were plenty] of opportunities to grow and learn there as a transportation professional, and I have the upmost respect for the people that work there.”
Above all, BikeWalk NC is extremely grateful for Lauren’s willingness to collaborate and for her support of BWNC’s goals to increase transportation safety education in North Carolina. BWNC has had an effective and successful relationship with Lauren and the NCDOT’s Division of Bicycle and Pedestrian Transportation, and it hopes that the NCDOT will select a new director that will advance Lauren’s goals and programs to improve bicycling, pedestrian, and motorist safety and education across the state.
BikeWalk Director Lisa Riegel drafted a letter to the Division of Bicycle and Pedestrian Transportation expressing these sentiments and hopes for the Division’s new directorship, which can be read here. BWNC also drafted a resolution expressing gratitude and respect for Lauren Blackburn in her role as the Division’s director that can be read here.
Lauren is now working for the consulting firm VHB as a project manager at the company’s office in Raleigh.