The Friday Profile

The Friday Profile: Boris and Melissa Kaganovich, Portland’s merry pranksters of street reinvention

by on May 8th, 2015 at 1:34 pm

Four years after coming to Portland from New York and two years after co-founding Better Block PDX, the Kaganoviches are moving to Toronto on Monday.
(Photos: M.Andersen/BikePortland unless noted)

Boris Kaganovich was talking quickly, as he often does, when he walked past the button-activated pedestrian signal at Northeast 60th and Glisan. Without breaking stride, he slammed the heel of his hand into the button and kept walking in another direction.

The lean, curly-haired 30-year-old grinned a little too widely.

“I just hit those whenever I walk past them,” he explained cheerfully.

It was August 2014, and if Kaganovich was acting a little like a cat who had eaten the canary and gotten away with it, he could probably be forgiven. (more…)

The Friday Profile: Steve Novick, the accidental Southwest Portlander

by on February 13th, 2015 at 3:54 pm

Portland city commissioner and Multnomah neighborhood resident Steve Novick, photographed at Baker & Spice in Hillsdale this morning.
(Photo: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

When Portland’s transportation commissioner arrived in town, he was almost a caricature of a newcomer to the Northwest.


The Friday Profile: David Griffiths, Portland’s tattooed philosopher of ‘ciclovismo’

by on January 23rd, 2015 at 5:22 pm

David Griffiths has developed a concise and compelling way of talking and thinking about bicycles as a metaphor for life.
(Photos: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

For years, as deeply as he loved language, David Griffiths thought social media wasn’t for him.


The Friday Profile: Kyle Carlson, Daimler Trucks’ 52-mile-a-day iron man

by on December 19th, 2014 at 2:58 pm

Kyle Carlson.
(Photos by M Andersen/BikePortland)

Kyle Carlson was a couple hundred feet up the hills of Northwest Portland when he mentioned he used to ride all the way home without switching out of his biggest front gear.


Holiday profile: David Lewis of Veteran Bicycle Co. is trying to invent a cheaper bike

by on November 11th, 2014 at 4:08 pm

david lewis
David Lewis believes that bike
manufacturing is ripe for disruption.
(Photos courtesy Lewis)

Portland is thick with indie bike frame builders. But the most audacious bike-design entrepreneur in town is focused on everything except the frame.

Ringed on three and a half sides by his tiny metal fabrication studio — a sort of blue-collar cubicle inside ADX, Southeast Portland’s coworking facility for people who make stuff — David Lewis described the product he’s slowly trying to design from the gears out.

“It’s an American bicycle that’s affordable and ready to ride,” Lewis said. “I don’t know what that bike looks like yet.”

The 37-year-old founder of Veteran Bicycle Co. just got his machine manufacturing certificate this fall. But he’s about to head into his second year of trying to come up with completely new and lower-cost ways to design and manufacture any and every part of the bicycle.


The Friday Profile: Jackie Dingfelder, the lawmaker who biked away

by on August 1st, 2014 at 7:02 am

city hall
One of the best friends bicycling has ever had in Salem, Jackie Dingfelder, left the state senate last year to become one of the biggest fans of biking in Portland City Hall.
(Photos: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

There is no particular reason to doubt the former chair of the Oregon Senate’s Environment and Natural Resources Committee when she says she was just ready for a change.


The Friday Profile: Jim Chasse, East Portland’s quiet, conquering bike warrior

by on June 13th, 2014 at 1:59 pm

jim chasse
Jim Chasse became excited about bike transportation while working on the 2010 city bike plan and is part of the very successful East Portland Action Plan bicycle subcommittee.
(Photo M.Andersen/BikePortland)

When East Portland biking advocate Jim Chasse met the young state legislator who had just ousted incumbent Patrick Sheehan, he got right to the point.

“I told Shemia Fagan, ‘This is what we need: We need Powell Boulevard,'” Chasse recalled Thursday. “‘We need $80 million, $60 million. And if you can’t get it for us, we’re just going to fire you.'”

The Friday Profile: Rachael Pecore-Valdez, mountain-bike rookie on a wolf’s tail

by on April 11th, 2014 at 3:27 pm

Every day, Rachael Pecore-Valdez trains by riding her 26-year-old Huffy to the top of Mount Tabor.
(Photos by M.Andersen/BikePortland)

Rachael Pecore-Valdez said her husband, for one, is thrilled that she’s finally coming around to bikes.

She’s a little nervous herself. For someone whose longest bike trip ever is 40 miles to Sauvie Island and back, a 1,200-mile, five-week mountain bike trek across most of Oregon will be, well, a leap.


The Friday Profile: Andrew Reed, River City’s ad man on a deadline (mostly SFW)

by on March 28th, 2014 at 10:31 am

River City Bicycles ad creator Andrew Reed in a cyclocross race.
(Photo courtesy Reed.)

He’s co-created major TV ads, like this one launching Apple’s iPad Air. He led the team that came up with Oregon Humane Society’s “End Petlessness” campaign and the concept for Oregon Public Broadcasting’s signature news show, Think Out Loud.

One year, in a gig he’s still sheepish about, he commuted weekly from California to Detroit to do ad work for Chevrolet.

But about 20 times each year for the last decade, Andrew Reed has sat down with Adobe Illustrator to put together River City Bicycles‘ quarter-page black and white ad for page 3 of Willamette Week.

“I can’t think of another bike shop in the country that does this,” said Reed, a freelance creative director who moved from Portland to Los Angeles in 2012, in a phone interview Thursday. “It’s kind of a life’s work kind of thing.”


The Friday Profile: Jeffrey Cramer, Portland’s stolen-bike good Samaritan

by on February 28th, 2014 at 2:31 pm

Jeffrey Cramer, who says he can support himself indefinitely as long as he spends just $500 a month, talked to us about bikes, bike theft and living outdoors in Portland.
(Photos by M.Andersen/BikePortland)

When Jeffrey Cramer bought what he now calls “Sarah’s bike” for $10 last Friday night, he wasn’t planning to track down its owner, he said. He just needed a way to get home, because someone had stolen his own bike a week before.

“At that time of night, $10 for a bike ride home was a good deal — you can’t get a cab back to where I live for $10,” he said. “It wasn’t ’til I got home that I realized I was riding a gem.”

Cramer, 48, doesn’t want to say exactly where he lives, except that it’s “way the fucking hell out there.” But five days after he turned down most of a $100 reward for tracking down the owner of the bike he’d bought from the man who stole it, this self-described “vagabond” was willing to have a candid conversation about his decision to live outdoors, the importance of bikes in his life and his own thoughts about Portland’s underground economy of stolen bicycles.