Ian Bearden – Chairman, Board of Directors

Ian Bearden.  Bike Safe I M was created in honor of Ian who sustained critical injuries in a bicycle/vehicle accident on 8/28/2011.  Ian was active in the initial development of the Bike Safe I M Foundation and plays a major role in the on-going activities of the foundation. He’s currently a sophomore in high school, plays offensive line on his school football team, and has won marketing awards as a member of DECA (Distributive Education Clubs of America) which prepares emerging leaders and entrepreneurs in marketing, finance, hospitality, and management.

Jan Vrtiska – President and Chief Executive Officer, Co-Founder

Jan Vrtiska, Registered Nurse; BS-Education. Jan has served as Clinical Development Coordinator at Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital, Lincoln, NE.  As a nursing educator, Jan has developed and presented seminars, as well as organized and coordinated programming on nursing units. She has researched all aspects of bicycle safety for children. Jan will be active in all areas of foundation operations and fundraising, including providing event education.

Bryan Bearden – Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Co-Founder

Bryan Bearden, a 25-year veteran of the US Air Force, is currently a Vice President (VP) for SAIC  in Rosslyn, VA.  In his current role he manages a team of 750 employees working on SAIC’s Air Force Programs along with numerous projects in the Pentagon. During his Air Force career, Bryan led numerous organizations, both internationally and domestic, including a 3000-person wing with assets and infrastructure worth $2.9 billion.  Additionally, he was the Chief Operating Officer for a 56,000-person organization responsible for organizing, training, and equipping all Air Force combat units west of the Mississippi River; and for Air Force operations, engagement, and partnership building activities in Central and South America and the Caribbean.

Janelle Bearden - Treasurer

Janelle is a 26-year Veteran of the US Air National Guard and the US Air Force Reserve. She is currently an Associate with Booz Allen Hamilton (BAH) in the Greater Washington DC area.  An award winning specialist in the Intelligence Community, Janelle has managed information and intelligence flow throughout a major theater of combat operation. Over a stretch of 6 years, both in uniform and as an Associate for BAH, she has managed accounts that provide funding for global commitments of intelligence specialists ensuring that limited resources are maximized to meet mission needs.

Ava Bearden - Member, Board of Directors

Ava Bearden, Foundation Consultant & Child Perspective Advisor. Ava is currently the president of her sixth grade class, and is excited to assist in bringing bicycle safety education to the kids of Tucson, AZ. Ava actively participates on a club team for her favorite sport of volleyball, takes riding lessons, and recently competed at the Tucson Junior Rodeo in the sport of barrel racing.

Brenda Blackman - Member, Board of Directors

Brenda Blackman, USAF (ret.), MBA-Troy University.

Brenda’s service includes Legislative Director to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Executive Officer to the Chief of Staff of the Air Force and the Joint Staff Wounded Warrior and Families of the Fallen Regional Director-North Region.  Previously, Brenda served as an associate vice president of Ambit, LLC. She currently serves as the Program Director with Highlight Technology, LLC. Brenda provides direction and organization support in event planning in Virginia for Bike Safe I M.

Chris Gorman - Member, Board of Directors

Chris Gorman, BA – University of Nebraska at Kearney.

Chris currently serves as the Director of Sports and Entertainment for Hurrdat, Hail Varsity, and The Railyard. He’s an avid cycler and indoor cycling instructor in Lincoln, Nebraska. With a passion for bike safety and social media, Chris will be assisting with Bike Safe I M marketing efforts.

Patti Gunther - Member, Board of Directors

Patti Gunther, BS-University of Nebraska-Kearney, Business Administration.

Patti currently the office administrator for The Sowers Club of Lincoln. She’s been actively involved in bicycle and pedestrian safety for the City of Lincoln, Nebraska, and Lancaster County for almost three decades. Patti has worked in fundraising and event development, blog site and web site management, as well as publicity material editing and production. She is a staunch believer in the mission of Bike Safe I M, and aids in moving it towards its vision in any way she can.

Katy Martin - Member, Board of Directors

Katy Martin, BA-University of Nebraska; attended Nebraska Wesleyan University with double-majored in Spanish and Sports Management.

Katy currently works at Hurrdat: Marketing, SEO, and Web Design where she helps manage the Railyard area in Lincoln, NE. She is fluent in Spanish and lived in Spain for six months. Katy also served as the event coordinator for the National Amputee Golf Championship held in Lincoln, Nebraska, and is active in community event planning, and loves golfing, hiking, cycling, and cycling safety. Katy is proud to bleed Husker red.

Sue Nunnally – Member, Board of Directors

Sue Nunnally – BFA degree in Interior Design from the University of Georgia Lamar Dodd School of Art (LDSA); MFA in Historic Preservation from the Savannah College of Art and Design.

Sue serves on the Board of Advisors at the University of Georgia Lamar Dodd School of Art, and chairs this board for a two-year term starting 2023. As a member and chair of this board, she serves on the Advocacy and Executive Committees. These committees assist the director and students with short- and long-term goals, strategic planning, and financial support to ensure the school meets its goals. Sue has been a Bike Safe I M  board member for over 6 years. Her goal is to support Bike Safe I M in any way she can, continuing the great work that this organization is known for and does. She is always committed to educating and ensuring everyone wear a helmet while riding a bike, because it saves lives!

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