Mia Birk is the President of Alta Planning + Design, and a world-renowned expert in non-motorized transportation. With 20 years of experience in pedestrian, bicycle, trail, and greenway planning, design and implementation, Mia’s work has helped the country embrace more sustainable means of transportation. She served as Portland’s Bicycle Program Manager from 1993-99. She is also an Adjunct Professor at Portland State University, teaching Pedestrian and Bicycle Issues for graduate students in urban planning. Mia’s newly released book, Joyride: Pedaling Toward a Healthier Planet, tells the behind-the-scenes story of how a group of determined visionaries transformed Portland into a cycling mecca and inspired the nation.
Marilyn Johnston has received an Oregon Literary Arts Fellowship for Writers, a Robert Penn Warren Award, and was selected as a Fishtrap Fellow. Her collection of poems about her family’s recovery from the Vietnam War, Red Dust Rising, was nominated for the national Pushcart Prize. My Mother Was a Coast Guard Spar, a short documentary that debuted last May at the Toronto Jewish Film Festival, is her first film project. Marilyn is the Human Rights & Relations Specialist for the City of Salem.
Lois Leveen’s work has appeared in African American Review, Bridges: A Jewish Feminist Journal, Cloudbank, The Jew and the Carrot, MELUS (Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States), the New York Times, Oregon Literary Review, and Portland Queer, and on the NPR program LiveWire. Her first novel, The Secrets of Mary Bowser, to be published by William Morrow in February 2012, is based on the true story of Mary Bowser, a free black woman who became a spy for the Union Army during the Civil War—by pretending to be a slave to the family of Confederate President Jefferson Davis. A former faculty member at UCLA and Reed College, she frequently leads seminars for Literary Arts.
Barry Sanders is currently writer-in-residence at Pacific Northwest College of Art, in Portland. For thirty years, he taught at Pitzer College, of the Claremont Colleges, with a joint appointment in literature and the history of ideas. He is the author of some fourteen books, the most recent of which are Unsuspecting Souls: The Disappearance of the Human Being and The Green Zone: The Environmental Costs of Militarism, both finalists for the Oregon Book Award. He is currently at work on a book on metaphor.
was awarded the Oregon Book Award. She recently completed a manuscript of linked poems entitled “A Good Time to Die,” and will have work in the forthcoming anthology Before We Have Nowhere To Stand Israel/Palestine: Poets Respond to the Struggle.
Willa’s conversation with poet Frances Payne Adler is in the final issue of Bridges: A Jewish Feminist
Journal, which has been in publication for twenty-one years.Willa’s poems and prose have appeared in Bridges
. In September 2012, her interdisciplinary exhibit at the Oregon Jewish Museum, The Books of Esther
, will explore how memory, Jewish identity, disability and aging shaped her mother’s life.