John Burke

President, Trek Bicycle

John Burke began working at Trek Bicycle in 1984 and has been president of the company since 1997. In addition to leading Trek, John served as chairman of President George W. Bush’s President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports and is a founding member of PeopleForBikes. John is an avid cyclist, runner, and a published author. John and his wife, Tania, live in Madison, Wisconsin.

John’s Role at the National Conference:

We are privileged to have such a successful businessman, visionary, and partner at this year’s national conference. John will explain up close and personal Trek’s vision, impact and role in advocacy. John will further share why Trek is more than just a bike company and is investing in NICA. John will share his advice and lessons learned for a growing organization such as NICA. After John speaks, conference attendees will have an opportunity to ask questions.

Joan Garry

Joan Garry Consulting: Because Nonprofits Are Messy

Joan Garry began her career in 1981 as part of the management team that launched MTV. She followed this successful eight-year tenure with another successful run as an executive at Showtime Networks. Then, in 1997 while either having a midlife crisis or avoiding one, Garry was named the executive director of GLAAD, one of the largest gay rights organizations in the U.S.

She joined GLAAD to find an organization in deep financial crisis (18 staff and yes, $360 in the bank), led it out of the depths to a place of prominence focusing on the power of the media to change hearts and minds. From the accurate coverage of the murder of Matthew Shepard to the successful lobbying of The New York Times to include gay and lesbian couples on its wedding pages, Garry’s strategy was clear: keep GLAAD focused on the media because the road to acceptance begins with visibility and understanding.

After her eight year run at GLAAD, Garry built on this expertise and became a successful political fundraiser, co-chairing the LGBT Finance Committee for the Obama 2008 Presidential campaign. She has been in a leadership position on a large national board and her family makes significant contributions to causes near and dear.

She brings all of this experience to her work as the Principal of Joan Garry Consulting, a boutique firm that helps nonprofits across a wide variety of sectors to untangle strategic knots enabling them to have a clearer path in pursuit of their missions.

From executive coaching to strategy engagements to crisis management, Joan works with organizations across a variety of sectors – independent schools, social justice, illness based organizations, LGBT advocacy. She works with large organizations like UNICEF USA and The Union for Reform Judaism to organizations that are anxious to move to the next level.

Her blog at for board and staff leaders of nonprofits reaches 100,000 unique leaders monthly from over 150 countries and her podcast Nonprofits Are Messy is frequently the #1 nonprofit / government podcast on iTunes. Lastly, she is the founder of The Nonprofit Leadership Lab, a monthly online membership site for board and staff leaders of  small nonprofits who can afford neither coaching nor consulting. Through a vast array of content and a community moderated by experts, Joan is reaching nearly 2,000 board and staff leaders worldwide. Joan currently teaches at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania where she teaches Nonprofit Communications Strategy and Media and Social Change to undergraduate seniors.

Her book, Joan Garry’s Guide To Nonprofit Leadership (John Wiley and Sons) was published in early 2017 and is already in its second printing.

Joan’s Role at National Conference

Joan’s inspirational keynote will offer smart, practical (and often humorous) advice on how best to love your work, in any and all roles you play at NICA or your league, and be as effective at it as possible. She will bring and translate her years of varied experience into a personal, actionable and invigorating path for all. All attendees will receive a signed copy of Joan’s book.

Read more about Joan and Joan Garry Consulting

Jerry Lynch

Founder and CEO, Way of Champions

While most would consider him simply a sports psychologist, Dr. Jerry Lynch is a coach, mentor and teacher who guides and coaches athletes and parents to explore the meaning and purpose of sport, as a powerful vehicle to help us understand the mental-emotional-spiritual components of the athletic game and how they apply to the bigger game called LIFE. In the process of this exploration, overall athletic performance is greatly enhanced.

Dr. Lynch has a deep calling, one where his success is not measured by “making a living” but rather by “making a difference” in the athletic and personal lives of those with whom he works.  He helps others to understand how sport is a microcosmic classroom for helping athletes, coaches and parents of sports kids develop crucial capacities to love, respect and care for each other while simultaneously learning to enhance the spiritual elements of courage, commitment, compassion, patience, perseverance, sacrifice, integrity, trust, belief and selflessness: the values so absolutely essential to extraordinary performance in athletics and life.

Jerry’s Role at National Conference

A powerful public speaker, Jerry’s true talent is inspiring others to coach and to lead in the Way of Champions. Jerry will present an inspiring keynote address to the entire conference and will work alongside John O’Sullivan to provide performance strategies and tools for success in sports and life in workshop formats for those in the Coach Supporter track.

Read more about Jerry and Way of Champions

John O’Sullivan,

Founder and CEO, Changing the Game Project

John started the Changing the Game Project in 2012 after two decades as a soccer player and coach on the youth, high school, college and professional level.  He is the author of the #1 bestselling books Changing the Game: The Parents Guide to Raising Happy, High Performing Athletes, and Giving Youth Sports Back to our Kids and Is it Wise to Specialize?

John has consulted with organizations such as US Lacrosse, USA Swimming and US Soccer and the PGA Tour and numerous other organizations around the world.

When he speaks, John brings to the table a wealth of practical, hands-on knowledge garnered through years of working with players and their families on sport specific development, fitness and nutrition, college recruiting, and most importantly, training high-performing athletes by creating a player-centered environment.

John’s Role at National Conference

Based on his 20+ years of field experience, John will provide a keynote address to the general conference and host workshops throughout the national conference to equip Coach Supporters with practical, hands on knowledge to create a student-athlete centered coaching environment. John will reinforce why NICA’s core philosophies of inclusive and equal are so important in today’s youth sport environment and send attendees away with practical coaching techniques for NICA coaching scenarios.

Read more about John and Changing the Game Project

Guest Speakers

Molly Hurford,, & More!

Molly writes about all types of endurance sport, but especially cycling, for magazines and websites including Bicycling, Outside, MapMyRun and Nylon. She’s also the author of the upcoming Shred Girls Series, as well as Fuel Your Ride; Saddle, Sore; and Mud, Snow and Cyclocross. She co-hosts The Consummate Athlete podcast, and writes regularly on her site,

Molly will be joining our NICA GRiT Panel presentation, covering the conference and contribute to the awesome experience with her energy and reflection as an insightful game-changing female writer.

Read more about Molly here

Jennifer Boldry

Ph.D., PeopleForBikes Director of Research

As Director of Research for PeopleForBikes Jennifer’s job is to connect the dots between great places to ride and ridership of all kinds. She aggregates and synthesizes secondary research as well as directs the primary research program. Jennifer holds M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Texas A&M University, where she was trained in experimental social psychology.

Jennifer will be talking about a new study measuring the economic value of bicycling in Northwest Arkansas. She will also participate in our NICA GRiT panel, bringing a research perspective.

Read more about Jennifer here

Jenn Dice

VP Business Network, PeopleForBikes

Jenn’s leads the Business Network of PeopleForBikes that works with governments at the federal, state and local level to make bicycling better for everyone. The Business Network represents the bike industry and leads with the voice of business – economic development, job creation, and improving communities through bikes.

Before PeopleForBikes Jenn worked as the chief lobbyist for the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) and directed their national and local public lands policy and access advocacy efforts and led IMBA’s work before Congress and with many national coalition partners.

In 2011, Jenn was recognized by Outside Magazine’s “power list” of the top 25 people that influence the world outside for her time with IMBA and was inducted into the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame in 2014. Jenn is an avid endurance mountain biker who has completed the Leadville Trail 100 14 times and mountain biked down Mount Kilimanjaro (twice).

Paxton Roberts

Chief Bicycle Officer, BikeNWA

Paxton Roberts is the Chief Bicycle Officer for the nonprofit BikeNWA, Northwest Arkansas’s lead advocate and go-to resource for cycling. BikeNWA works with individuals, bike-related nonprofits, philanthropic foundations, cities, and businesses to transform the region into a world-class biking community. BikeNWA advocates for the creation of Complete Streets policies, the inclusion of safe, low-stress, on-street bike networks, bike education in schools, and implements protected bike lane tactical urbanism pilot projects around the region. Paxton has an M.A. in Geography and has completed coursework towards a Ph.D. in Public Policy.

Brendan Quirk

Cycling Program Director, The Runway Group

Brendan Quirk serves as the Cycling Program Director of the Runway Group, a Bentonville-based organization focused on engaging civic and corporate leaders to develop public-private, quality-of-life initiatives.

He is mainly focused on positioning Northwest Arkansas as a leading region nationwide for the incubation and recruitment of cycling-related brands, an innovator in cycling infrastructure, and a bucket-list destination for bike tourism.

He was co-founder and CEO of Competitive Cyclist, a Little Rock-based startup which eventually grew to become North America’s largest eCommerce cycling company. In 2011, it was acquired by outdoor eCommerce retailer, where he served as Executive Vice President of Customer Experience. Most recently he served as North America President for Rapha Racing, LLC, a London-based brand of cycling apparel and accessories.

The Walton Family Foundation:

The Walton Family Foundation is, at its core, a family-led foundation. The children and grandchildren of our founders, Sam and Helen Walton, lead the foundation and create access to opportunity for people and communities. We work in three areas: improving K-12 education, protecting rivers and oceans and the communities they support, and investing in our home region of Northwest Arkansas and the Arkansas-Mississippi Delta. In 2016, the foundation awarded more than $454 million in grants in support of these initiatives.

We are excited to hear from the Walton Family Foundation. They will share the approach, execution and impact of mountain biking in their own region.