eGo CarShare was started by a group of Boulder citizens who were very concerned about minimizing their environmental impact, and who strived to leave a more sustainable legacy for future generations. They took the issue of transportation to heart and made a commitment to minimize their automobile use. In 1997, the “Little Red Car Co-op” was formed. The momentum continued forward, and in 1998, Boulder CarShare (BCS) was founded.
The organization was incorporated as a Colorado nonprofit on August 28, 1998. Approval by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) entity came on April 3, 2006. Boulder CarShare rebranded in January 2009 as eGo CarShare in order to bring its service to the city of Denver. In March of 2009 eGo CarShare placed its first three cars in Denver, and in the fall of 2009 eGo CarShare received its first significant outside funding from a CMAQ (Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality) grant to aid in its expansion to core Denver neighborhoods.
Since then we have been adding new locations through partnerships and another round of CMAQ funding, which has allowed us to start adding carshare vehicles in close proximity to B-cycle (Denver & Boulder’s bike sharing systems) stations to create multimodal hubs. These hubs allow members to “right size” their transportation. They can choose to walk, bicycle, B-cycle, jump on the bus or light rail, or grab a carshare car depending on their need.
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We couldn’t do what we do as a small community nonprofit without stellar staff members. Lucky us that we have found the best of the best to assist our members at all times of the day, keep our fleet running smooth, and lead our organization to the next level. Find out more about these hardworking folks!
Karen has been eGo CarShare’s (formerly Boulder CarShare’s) tireless Executive Director since the program’s inception in 2001, and, not coincidentally, she has also been car-free for over 14 years. Karen grew up in the Midwest, but the Rocky Mountains lured her out to Colorado in 1997. Once she discovered she could easily and joyfully get nearly everywhere in Boulder by bike and bus, she was here to stay.
What started out as a volunteer and “hobby” project for Karen has gradually transformed into a thriving, non-profit carsharing program – one of the first of its kind in the nation (as evidenced by our URL carshare.org). From 2001-2010, Karen volunteered her time as ED. During those early years for her “day job” she worked in the LOHAS industry, was the CFO of a local home health care agency, and the Conference Manager for Sustainable Resources (a Boulder NPO). Eventually, though, carsharing took over her life, and it’s not just a hobby anymore. She is passionate about helping to transform the way we think about transportation, and advocates for placing people, rather than cars, at the heart of community planning, so that we can create more sustainable, fulfilling and inspirational communities. Karen holds a BA in physics from DePauw University and a teaching certification from UW-Stevens Point.
Favorite Member Interaction: There are so many, it's hard to pick just one. All of our members rock! Any person who chooses to live car-lite or car-free inspires me. But here’s an example of how much our members look out for each other: a member left a personal credit card in one of our cars. The next member found it and left us a message about it. When we called her back later that day to arrange to get the credit card back to its rightful owner, she informed us that she had already taken it upon herself to find the credit card owner on Facebook, and she had already returned the card to him. I love it when people help each other out like that.
Lauren has her degree in Technical Management, with a concentration in Accounting. Lauren previously assisted people in a career as a physical therapist but for the past five years has switched over to helping people by sorting out their billing issues. She comes to us by way of the Brewing Market and numerous other clients whom she has helped get their finances in order. Lauren is an avid biker, snowboarder, and also enjoys horseback riding.
Alexis is passionate about sustainability and left behind a career working with children for opportunities to use her degree in Environmental Studies. She moved from the rainy Pacific Northwest for Colorado's sunshine in 2012 and hasn't looked back, except to visit the ocean which she still misses. Since being in Colorado, she has worked for various nonprofits including Western Resource Advocates, Sustainable Revolution Longmont, and Tindakan helping develop their marketing, events, and social media presence. She loves having the chance to work with partner organizations on mission based work, interacting with members, and connecting people and businesses to carsharing solutions that work for them. She welcomes ideas and feedback about opportunities if you have them!
Favorite Member Interaction:
I love when I get to chat with people and find out more about how carsharing makes a difference in their lives! I recently helped a member sign up for an account and reserve the pickup truck on a busy moving weekend, before he even had his fob in hand. He was able to get connected with a service he needed immediately and was thrilled to learn we had all-wheel drive cars with bike racks so he could get away on weekends too.
Carolyn has been car-free for most of her adult life in Denver, which is longer than she cares to admit. She learned to question the heedless exploitation of natural resources while reading Rousseau at St. John’s College and earning a highly marketable degree in Philosophy. A longtime employee of the Tattered Cover, Carolyn has also worked on progressive political campaigns and raised funds for nonprofits like the NRDC, the Environmental Defense Fund, and the Sierra Club. She first joined a carshare in 2011, but generally rides a single speed cruiser everywhere she can make it go.
Favorite Member Interaction: It's hard to pick just one, because our members are so awesome, and I'm the one they talk to every day! I do remember that right after I started, in late 2012, I helped a delightful elderly gentleman who was having a little trouble getting the hang of making reservations online. He was gracious and courteous and kept calling me “my darling” in a way that somehow managed to be nothing but charming and grandfatherly. It gave me warm fuzzies. He was such a sweetie pie!
In his former life, Andrew worked within the investment sector of finance. In 2012 he gave in to the call of the open road and decided to take a career break to go traveling. Over the course of 19 months, Andrew traveled from Guatemala to Argentina, stopping along the way to volunteer at several schools and work on a couple of farms. Upon his arrival back to the U.S., he decided to follow his passion of making a positive environmental impact and joined eGo. He has been car-free since 2010. Andrew loves all things outdoors - running, biking, hiking, camping, and snowboarding - along with cooking and traveling.
Brittany will be helping us administrate our Affordable Housing Transportation Toolkit grant program through early 2016. Britt has a background in Sociology, with experience in sales and customer service, and is currently pursuing a career in grant writing. She'll be volunteering for three other nonprofits while she works part time for us! Says Britt, "I thrive when I am able to improve efficiency and quality of life for those in my community!" Welcome aboard, Britt!
Board of Directors
Staff could not propel eGo to the next level without the oversight and leadership of our dedicated Board of Directors.
After spending three years serving in the Peace Corps in West Africa, Zach decided he needed to live somewhere with less dust, more mountains, and a healthy dose of snow. Combining his interest in climate change activism and green business, he joined eGo CarShare staff in 2012. After a couple years of dedicated service as eGo staff, Zach moved on to Boulder County as a Business Sustainability Adviser. He happily served on the Board of Directors of eGo as Secretary in 2014 and was elected eGo's new Board President in March 2015.
Daniel Ziskin grew up in a car-dependent sprawling suburb of Philadelphia. In 1993 he received a Ph.D. in physics from The Johns Hopkins University by studying clouds and their effect on climate. After his ultimate frisbee career peaked, he became involved as a transportation activist fighting the construction of a wasteful outer beltway around Washington, D.C. In 1998, Daniel moved to Boulder. He donated his car to eGo CarShare and joined the board around 2001.
Greg Ekrem was elected to the board of eGo Carshare in December of 2011 and currently serves as the organization's treasurer. Greg is a Boulder native and is a managing consultant with Navigant Consulting in Boulder. He works within the Energy Practice of Navigant in the Energy Efficiency Group. The focus of his work includes: program lead of impact and process evaluation activities of utility demand response programs, coordination, support and implementation of field activities, market research activities, GIS analysis, database management, and map design. He holds a B.A. in Environmental Conservation, a blended program of geography, biology, and economics from the University of Colorado (CU) at Boulder. An avid walker, Greg has not driven to work in five years and is perennially in the top 20 users of the Boulder B-Cycle bike sharing system.
Cassie Wright is the Project Manager for Urban Ventures, LLC, a real estate company that is dedicated to creating healthy, sustainable communities. In her position, Cassie works on all aspects of real estate development: from land acquisition to project construction. Additionally, Ms. Wright researches and implements best practices and health-based programming to foster community development that promotes social cohesion and positive well-being. Cassie and her husband are a happy, car-free household and are avid car share users. Cassie holds a Master of City Planning degree from the University of Pennsylvania and a B.A. in Sociology/Anthropology from St. Olaf College. She is a LEED Green Associate with ten years’ experience in urban planning, real estate development and environmental sustainability.
Graham has been involved with eGo for the past 10 years. His interest in clean urban transportation extends into many areas. An electric vehicle company first employed him in 1996 before he started ZENN with some Canadian partners in 2001. In 1997, Graham started 21 Wheels with a general methodology towards cleaner urban options. While operating in this space, he has worked with many new technologies and forms of mobility including Neighborhood Electric Vehicles, Segways, CarShare, BikeShare, electric bikes and urban rail. He is the president of two other non-profits: Denver Electric Vehicle Council and Arborway Railroad, and is currently working as a founder of Swift Tram, a suspended monorail company based in Boulder, CO. Graham is married to Cathy, and has two daughters, Peyton and Lexie Bowe.
Carrie Murphy is one of the new crop of eGo board members, elected onto the board in May 2013. Carrie has been happily carsharing since 2003: first with City CarShare in San Francisco, and then in 2009 with eGo. Leaving a career in arts administration at San Francisco Opera in 2008, Carrie sought to find a new field that combined her passion for sustainability and a healthy built environment. This path lead her to a Masters in Urban and Regional Planning, which she received in 2013. Carrie is currently working with Boulder Housing Partners (BHP) to help measure the impact that BHP’s service coordinators have with some of their lower-income residents. She is glad to get the word out about carsharing whenever possible, and believes in the service as an essential part of the transportation toolkit. Ask her about carsharing and you’ll get an enthusiastic earful.
Holly is a new eGo Board Member and long-time eGo member (since 2010). She lives in Downtown Denver, were she has been car free since 2010, and is excited to serve on eGo’s Board because she values our vision of reducing the number of cars on the road and finding creative ways to encourage people to minimize or eliminate use of their personal vehicles. Holly is an attorney at Lewis Roca Rothgerber.
Our most recent 990 filings can be accessed at www.guidestar.org under the name “Boulder CarShare.”