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15 Champions Driving the Adoption of Electric Bikes in the United States

Don DiCostanzo
Co-Founder and CEO of Pedego Electric Bikes

Don DiCostanzo
Don DiCostanzo – Pedego Electric Bikes

After 30 years in the automotive world, Don started an electric bicycle shop in Newport Beach, California. This was a labor of love. Over time, he developed an interest in electric cycling and tried to find quality electric bikes for his bicycle shop. His frustration with existing suppliers led him to contact his friend and future Pedego partner Terry Sherry and make plans for Pedego. In 2008, the two men co-founded Pedego Electric Bikes. Today Pedego is one of the most recognized brands in the industry.


Larry Pizzi
Sr. VP of the Specialty Division and President of EBCC at Accell North America / Raleigh USA

Larry Pizzi – Accell North America
Larry Pizzi – Accell North America

Larry has had more than 40 years of experience within the bicycle industry. Prior to his role at Accell and Currie, he held a General Management role at Fogdog Sports, a B2C E-commerce company. He was also the General Manager of the bicycle division at Schwinn/GT and held senior sales and marketing management roles at Mongoose. He has also held sales management roles at Bell Sports, Service Cycle Supply and Derby Cycle Corporation. Larry owned and operated Bike Tech, a three-store chain of specialty bike stores in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from 1978 to 1990 and during this time, served on the board of the National Bicycle Dealers Association (NBDA) as a Director. Currently Larry serves as a Director of the Bicycle Products Suppliers Association (BPSA) and is chair of the eBike committee.


Ed Benjamin
The Light Electric Vehicle Association LEVA

Ed Benjamin
Ed Benjamin – Light Electric Vehicle Association

Ed is a founder of the Light Electric Vehicle Association, LEVA. He’s the chairman, managing director of eCycle Electric, USA. Ed has been the authority on light electric vehicle products and suppliers since 1996; that’s 20 years! Ed is well connected in the world wide industry of electric bicycles, motorcycles, and components. His consulting company eCycleElectric Consultants is competent in the technologies and sourcing of these components, as well as the details of system integration.


Manfred Gingl
Chief Executive Officer of BionX International

Manfred Gingl - BionX International
Manfred Gingl – BionX International

Manfred Gingl has been the Chief Executive Officer of BionX International since 2010. Mr. Gingl served as the Chief Executive Officer of Magna Aftermarket Inc., a division of Magna International, Inc. Mr. Gingl served as President of Tesma International Inc. from April 1995 to May 2002 and also as its Chief Executive Officer since April 1995.

BionX is on a mission to revolutionize the way people move. Our award-winning electric drive systems are answering a growing worldwide demand for alternative transportation solutions that enable environmental sustainability and a higher quality of life.


Justin Lemire-Elmore
Owner – Grin Technologies

Justin Lemire-Elmore - Grin Technologies
Justin Lemire-Elmore – Grin Technologies

Justin owns Grin Technologies, a small Canadian engineering company based in Vancouver that is dedicated to advancing the state of after-market electric bicycle conversion kits, and is undeniably the most respected individual in the DIY electric bike category.

Justin is the inventor of the Cycle Analyst, the universal electric bike and EV computer/dashboard. His passion is the engineering, and he’s constantly inventing new products for Grin to sell, and advocating for improvements to stock electric bike parts. A true leader in the EV revolution, Justin owns the electric vehicle forum website endless-sphere.com. Kept completely free of ads with money from Grin, endless sphere is dedicated to improving the technology of electric vehicles.


Claudia Wasko
Regional Business Unit Leader at Bosch

Claudia Wasko - Robert Bosch LLC
Claudia Wasko – Robert Bosch LLC

As Director eBike Business Development, Claudia leads the business establishment of Bosch eBike Systems in North America. She manages the sales also oversees the preparation of market entry in South America. She grows the eBike market by removing legislative and regulatory barriers. She develops and maintains close business relationships with bicycle and industry partners based on a comprehensive customer strategy. She increases brand awareness and position Bosch brand to stay ahead of competition by developing and executing a B2B2C Marketing and Communication Strategy. She develops a comprehensive service and support concept for dealers and bike manufacturers in North America.

Claudia defines a product portfolio and ensures a TTM (time-to-market) launch. She sets regional targets for performance achievement and aligns targets with Global Target Responsible Management. She will create a yearly business plan and run the entity within the released budget. Further, Claudia directs the expansion of global market leadership.


 

Pete Prebus
Electric Bike Expo & Electric Bike Report

Pete Prebus - Electric Bike Expo & Electric Bike Report
Pete Prebus – Electric Bike Expo & Electric Bike Report

Pete is President of ElectricBikeReport.com, a website dedicated to getting the word out about electric bikes through news, reviews, guides, riding & maintenance tips, & more. Everyone knows and respects Pete for his tireless work reporting on all things e-bike.

Pete is also Chief Marketing Officer for the Electric Bike Expo, a series of electric bike test ride events where attendees can ride over 100 of the latest electric bikes for free. The focus of the Expo is to raise awareness of electric bikes and gather market data on consumer preferences.


Court Rye
Founder at ElectricBikeReview.com

Court Rye - ElectricBikeReview.com
Court Rye – ElectricBikeReview.com

Court is clearly one of the hardest working individuals in the electric bike industry with hundreds of hours of e-bike video reviews posted on his site and YouTube. He is the creator of ElectricBikeReview.com and associated Forum Community aimed at providing quantitative guides and reviews of ebike technology while also promoting direct feedback from consumers to leaders in industry. Court is extremely active on YouTube and Facebook, has authored an ebook called “A Practical Guide to Electric Bikes” and travels the US and Canada gathering video content year round.


Jason Kraft
CEO Electric Bike Technologies

Jason Kraft - Electric Bike Technologies - E-BikeKit & E-TrikeKit
Jason Kraft – Electric Bike Technologies

Jason founded the company and has been building the E-BikeKit brand since 2008. Under Jason’s leadership, the Electric Bike Technologies company and E-BikeKit brand have gained impressive market share in the electric bike industry, especially for retrofit conversion kit systems. In 2016 Jason remains focused on the original E-BikeKit company mission; to deliver the best electric bike conversion experience possible.

The E-BikeKit and E-TrikeKit conversion systems are the most popular online conversion kits in the United States market. The systems are sold in J&B Importers and the brand is also used exclusively by Worksman Cycles for electrifying their American made industrial tricycles. While retrofit systems remain the primary focus for the company, in August of 2015 Electric Bike Technologies crossed over to the complete electric bike business for the first time launching successful crowdfunding campaigns at both Indiegogo and Kickstarter for the Liberty Electric Tricycle. The company also plans a major push for B2C sales of complete electric tricycles in 2016 via electrictrike.com, which is presently in development.


Jim Turner
Owner, Optibike LLC

Jim Turner of Optibike
Jim Turner – Optibike

Jim is a legendary motocross rider and author of The Electric Bike Book. He founded Optibike in 1998, and brought it to market in 2006.  His creations targeted the mountain bike trail riders, providing a mid-drive electric bike system long before Bosch came to the USA. Originally, all the products were designed, manufactured, and assembled in the USA. But more recently the lower priced Pioneer brand bikes have been manufactured overseas.


Rob Means
Founder – Electro Ride Bikes & Scooters

Rob Means - Electro Ride Bikes & Scooters
Rob Means – Electro Ride Bikes & Scooters

In 1996, Rob discovered e-bikes, and soon started a small business selling and servicing electric bikes and scooters. Rob’s website Electro Ride Bikes & Scooters remains one of the most informative and popular online resources for all things relating to electric bikes. Rob is respected as one of the original visionaries of the electric bike movement in the US. Today Rob continues to lobby on behalf of the Light Electric Vehicle (LEV) and advanced transportation industries.


Ross Evans
Founder and President at Xtracycle Inc

Ross Evans - Xtracycle Inc
Ross Evans – Xtracycle Inc

Ross is the founder of Extracycle, the maker of the attachment for converting a regular bike into a long tail cargo bike.  What’s that got to do with e bikes you say?  Tons of Extracycle equipped bikes sport conversion kits, and today the Extracycle product line includes some great electric cargo bikes.  Cargo bikes really make the most of the electric bike, since they can carry groceries, passengers, building materials, just about anything.

Xtracycle ignited the cargo bike revolution that’s spreading around the world. Ross is a huge fan of electrifying his cargo bikes and has been an advocate for electric bikes throughout his career. The electric Edgerunner model with integrated Bosch electric drive system is arguably the best electric cargo bike being made today.


Rob Roberts
Writer – electricbike.com

Rob Roberts - electricbike.com
Rob Roberts – electricbike.com

Rob writes informative articles for the website electricbike.com. But he’s best known by the moniker “Spinningmagnets” on the endless-sphere forum. Rob is one of the backbone contributors to the popular Endless-Sphere Technology Forum, working as a forum moderator.

A writer from the shadows and less of a front man in the industry, Rob has helped thousands of electric bike amateurs and enthusiasts alike with his in-depth knowledge of electronics and passion for the electric bike.


Wayne Sosin
President of Worksman Cycles

Wayne Sosin of Worksman Cycles
Wayne Sosin of Worksman Cycles

Wayne is the president of Worksman Cycles.  Since 1898, Worksman has been manufacturing sturdy bikes and trikes for the industrial market. More recently, Worksman has supplied electric bikes and trikes that use their own version of the E-TrikeKit motor system. Worksman is also building the frames for the Liberty Electric Trike from Electric Bike Tech.


Endless-Sphere.com

Endless-Sphere.com
Endless-Sphere.com Technology Forum

A global community of EV enthusiasts and experimenters, dedicated to improving the EV experience. The owner of the website Justin of Grin Technology, keeps the site as free as possible of commercial influences. Unlike many internet forums, endless-sphere is very lightly moderated, so discussions are not censored simply because the product under discussion is not paying advertising. There is no paid advertising on the site.

Much of the discussion on ES is slanted towards modifications and experiments, usually to go faster, or building e bike batteries from the latest hot lithium cells. But it’s also a great place to learn the basics if you are thinking about getting into e bikes for a commute, touring, or just weekend riding.

Beware, some label “ES” addictive, you could lose some sleep reading it all. Many interesting people hang out regularly on ES, such as Doc Bass, the creator of the fastest electric bike on earth, Ypedal, a prolific writer and you tube video creator, Spinningmagnets, writer for electricbike.com, and many more, including your Electric Bike Insider editor Dogman Dan, who has explained the basics of e bikes to thousands. Large numbers of the ES regulars are engineers, and work in the EV industry. Others are pure self taught mad scientists.

 

 

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