Board of Directors
President: Linda Giltz: Linda has been doing urban, rural and regional planning work for over twenty years, with most of that experience in the Asheville region. She has been interested in creating more livable, walkable and bikeable communities and has been an advocate for greenways and bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure for most of her adult life. She worked for Land of Sky Regional Council for 17 years providing a variety of planning and related services to local communities and the region. She is now self-employed, providing community planning, project management, facilitation and related services. Linda is active in her neighborhood and a leader in her cohousing community. She and her husband love to travel, hike, bike, dance and cook and they love living in Asheville. Linda supports Connect Buncombe and greenways in general because she wants to see a connected network of bike and pedestrian infrastructure in Buncombe County. Greenways are part of that infrastructure, and are wonderful places to walk or bike and meet up with others. Connect Buncombe raises money and community awareness to support planning, design and construction of greenways. They are helping to create a critical mass of greenway supporters in Buncombe County that will be a force to get the network built.
Vice-President: Allison Glackin: Allison just retired from a career in qualitative research where she found that people want to tell her their stories, and where she could ensure that clients heard that voice as a means of transforming the voice of their consumers into actionable initiatives for companies. Young-at-heart but with 28 years of research experience, Allison brings a wide range of qualitative methodologies across many different industries. In addition to moderating she has developed training materials for client companies and market research professionals, spoken about qualitative research at association conferences and been a Moderator Manager at Ipsos. Allison has a B.S. from Duke University in Biomedical Engineering and worked for Procter & Gamble for 6 years prior to launching my career as a moderator in 1989. She lives with her husband in Asheville, NC and, when not working, can be found on hiking and mountain bike trails and, occasionally, in a craft brewery.
Secretary: Paul Muller:
Treasurer: Mel Scholl:
Past President, Robbie Sweester: Robbie has been practicing architecture for forty years in Tennessee, New York City, and North Carolina. Locally you will find examples of his work at the Grove Arcade and the Manor Inn Apartments. To celebrate his 60th birthday he rode his bicycle from Boston to the Oregon coast during the summer of 2013. That was exciting enough to convince him to do so again in 2016, leaving Yorktown, VA to arrive four months later in San Francisco. The kindness of strangers on the open road keeps drawing him back.
Robbie feels renewed every time he rides his bike and believes greenways offer the youthful awe of exploring the world beyond your “neighborhood” and feeling the wind blow on your face. Greenways offer that experience in a safe environment. An observer as much as a cyclist on his travels, he observes that people of all ages used these greenways. He believes that the measure of a well developed society was the varied options of choices of transportation…offering walking, bicycling, car, bus, tram, train all in the same day, through a well designed integrated system.
Mark Cobb: Mark is a recently retired dermatologist with a passion for hiking and travel. He has been on multiple long distance walks in Spain and Portugal on various routes of the Camino de Santiago and tires to hike in our beautiful WNC mountains at least once a week.
While traveling through Europe, Mark has has always been impressed by the infrastructure for walking (greenways, pedestrian streets, country roads and trails, etc) and seeing so many people outdoors and traveling by foot. Seeing an expanded and connected greenways in our city and county is important to him, as is promoting a walking culture here in Buncombe County.
My wife Kim and I bought our house here in Leicester, in 2007, on the birth of our grandson, Rye, who with his parents lives in Black Mountain, Kim and I moved here in 2014. We lived aboard a sailboat in the Caribbean 2012 through June of 2014. Prior to that we lived in Southern California where I was a General Contractor and avid cyclist, 6-8,000 miles per year. Frequent hikers with Rye, who is a waterfall affectionado, Interested in trails and green-ways. Also tennis, which has replaced cycling as the current obsessive sport. Pets include Jed, our black lab, Rosie and Rio our mother-daughter donkeys, and chickens. We are frequent travelers.
Tony Houser: As a lifelong bicycle commuter who recently rode the length of the Blue Ridge Parkway in three days, Tony is committed to a future that provides equal opportunities for all modes of transportation. He has been involved in multi-modal planning and greenway development since the mid-1980s and continues to work professionally and personally as an advocate for walking, bicycling, and transit. He has been involved in the application of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) since its inception and is an ardent advocate for universal accessibility. He believes that when we design for the very young and very old, we preserve the dignity and mobility of all ages and abilities. Tony is the senior project manager for Anchor QEA Engineering where he designs, reviews, and oversees projects involving site engineering and land planning, project quality assessment and control, and project administration. He has been a resident of Western North Carolina for approximately 13 years
Susan Roderick: Susan retired from her role as executive director of Asheville GreenWorks, where she worked for 40 years beginning with the Bicentennial with Quality ’76. Susan prides herself on her involved in all-things-green, including tree planting and preservation; revitalization of downtown, Nature Center; NC Arboretum; many school plantings and playgrounds; and DOT beautification projects. Hobbies include historic preservation, tour guiding, gardening, films and biking. Susan is happy that Connect Buncombe got started to fulfill one of my passions-more Greenways and access to our beautiful environment for all.
Past Board Members:
Past President, Marcia Bromberg: Marcia has over twenty-five years of experience in higher education and nonprofit administration and finance, including senior administrative positions at Wesleyan University, Nellie Mae Education Foundation, the University of Wisconsin System, and Tulane University. Her educational background includes an MBA from the University of Connecticut and a BA in mathematics from Emory University. Ms. Bromberg’s community interests include community health and well-being. She is the past president of Connect Buncombe and of the Carolina Mountain Club, and she has served as board treasurer and board chair of MANNA Foodbank.
Claudia Nix: Claudia is a long time resident of Asheville; she came here in 1965 to attend Warren Wilson College where she studied Social Sciences. She and her husband founded Liberty Bicycles, Inc in 1980 after having a small shop in our home for 3 years and not finding adequate biking supplies for a bike trip from Asheville to the Outer Banks. Her passion for improving biking conditions started in the ’70’s while trying to ride in the area and through her advocacy was put on the Asheville Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). After becoming a member of Healthy Buncombe in the ’90’s Claudia became interested in improving conditions and encouragement for walking. After customers started asking her to sell their bikes she became more passionate for greenways to make safe places for people of all ages to travel by bike or walking for pleasure or utilitarian trips.
When traveling to Seattle she and her husband had the opportunity to bike on the Burt Gilman Trail and had an amazing opportunity to see people of all races and ages using the trail. They even saw someone in a 3 piece suit riding to work. This has inspired her to keep working to have trails like that in Asheville.
Leanna Joyner: Leanna is Appalachian Trail Conservancy’s Program Director for Volunteer Relations and author of Hiking Through History, Civil War Site on the Appalachian Trail. She hiked all of the A.T. in 2003 and nearly half of the Pacific Crest Trail in 2010. The rewards she enjoys while in walking (in the woods or in her community) are those she hopes others will benefit from through her continued work in conservation and trails. Leanna believes that greenways offer an equitable transportation option and we must be intentional about providing access to all within our county
Chris Tomsic: Christopher Tomsic is a water resources engineer for Ecosystem Services and serves as the North Carolina office lead. Chris has 10 years of experience as a Water Resources Engineer with a focus on ecosystem restoration and natural system processes. Chris is actively involved with the Reems Creek Greenway initiative in Weaverville.