Meet the Candidates for the 2024 DUST2 Board below. Voting is open to all Dust2 members who should receive an email with the ballot on Monday, November 13, 2023. Voting closes on Monday, November 20th.
We have six candidates for 4 positions on the board to serve 2 consecutive years beginning January 2024.
If you are a current member of DUST2 and do not receive an email with the ballot please email us at Dust2web@gmail.com.
Driz Cook went to high school on the Front Range, graduated from CU in Boulder, and then spent several years living in Durango, Moab, and the Capitol Reef area before moving to Big Bear Lake, CA. In 2000 he started High Trails, an outdoor education school serving elementary schools in Southern California. Driz began trail work with the Big Bear Valley Trails Foundation in 2010, eventually serving close to a decade as the non-profit president. During his tenure he was the Project Manager for the Skyline Trail, sharing trail design and build with a private contractor and the USFS and overseeing the entire process. He worked closely with the USFS; authoring project documents used for the NEPA process to aid in trail development.
Driz started an Adopt-A-Trail program, which at peak contributed more than 2400 volunteer hours per year to local trail maintenance and stewardship. He formed partnerships with the city, county, ski resort, and a larger forest non-profit to create funds for a full-time paid trails coordinator for the Big Bear area, which is still in place today. Driz oversaw the merger between the Big Bear Valley Trails Foundation and the larger non-profit Southern California Mountains Foundation, giving a small non-profit the resources, full time staff, and longevity to continue on in perpetuity. Before leaving Big Bear, he proposed, designed, and had the opportunity to himself build the Maple Hill Trail System in the heart of Big Bear, which today is actively used by many, many people for all manner of outdoor exploration and recreation.
Driz began the move to Pagosa Springs in late 2020, officially regaining his old CO driver’s license number in 2022. He's in the process of slowly selling his outdoor school to a new partner and is working remotely and actively serving as an advisor. Driz also rides bikes...a lot.
George Gardner is new to Pagosa but not new to cycling. I am excited to be in a place with a vibrant cycling community, especially one that focuses on developing young riders. I also like the camaraderie of the weekly rides at Pagosa Mountain Sports. Coming from Portland, Oregon, I was active in racing (mostly road), gravel riding, commuting and some touring/bikepacking. I also led bike trips as a former camp counselor way way back and was an adventure scout leader guiding group trips. I have two grown sons now in Chicago and live with my wife Leslie Cole up by Hatcher.
Professional wise, I am the risk director for a small energy company in Polson, Montana, owned by Native American tribes. I recently taught middle and high school math for a brief period of three years - 2016-19. I also volunteer taught Junior Achievement (business principles) for 15 years to middle schoolers and hold a NOLS Wilderness First Responder certification.
Bike wise, I was a member of the Oregon Bicycle Racing Association and Team Oregon (racing) for about 26 years. In the mid-90's I served on the board of the Community Cycling Center, a non-profit that has educational programs and a shop. I would be happy to get involved and give back to this community.
Andy Guinn joined the board of DUST2 in 2017 and has served as the treasurer since then. In those six years, he is proud of his part in DUST2's work to build new trails on Reservoir Hill, grow the youth mountain biking team, revitalizing the wheel club, and advocacy efforts to find new opportunities for trails on the area.
Andy grew up outside of Denver with parents that always forced him to do things like camping, hiking, and biking. Although it took a while, Andy eventually figured out that these activities are awesome and now tries to find as many ways as he can to be outside. After a master's in Applied Mathematics at CU and a teaching license at CSU, he moved to Pagosa Springs in 2013 where he fell in love with all of the access to outdoor activities. He taught 8th Grade Math at Pagosa Springs Middle School for 7 years and started a Mountain Biking class for 8th graders in 2015. I'm 2020 Andy moved to help open San Juan Mountain School and continues to teach math, science, and computer science there today. In addition to academics, he helps lead several outdoor trips for the school each year. He is passionate about providing kids in our community opportunities to grow and learn in the outdoors.
Logan Hart is an avid outdoorsman who enjoys biking, hiking, skiing, hunting, and fishing in the San Juans. Having called Pagosa home for 5 years, he looks forward to engaging DUST2 members and driving community involvement to further improvement of existing trail infrastructure, continue development of new trails, and encourage coordination across user groups of multi-use trails.
Patrick Shaffer is a Florida man who’s slowly made his way west over the course of many years finally settling in Pagosa in early 2020.
He is an avid cyclist originally starting in the road racing scene in Nashville, graduating to cyclocross, gravel, and mountain biking racing in Austin. Today you’ll likely find him cruising the beautiful empty forest roads on a gravel bike around Pagosa or out on a mountain bike sending it (as hard as a 36-year-old can with a bad back and a mortgage can - it’s not impressive).
Professionally, Patrick is a “professional creative problem solver” for a large tech company. He has years of experience in building cohesive strategies that help define and address organizational goals from start to finish. He values creating structure and methodical principals that help sustain decision making and direction into the future.
Patrick is passionate about the cycling community in Pagosa and helping to further the Dust2 mission through community outreach and partnerships with like-minded organizations.
Lance Thornton has always had a love of cycling and pretty much anything outdoors. After being a some-timer here in Colorado since 2014, My family and I finally made the move to become Pagosans in 2019. My wife, Melissa, and I both teach in Pagosa Schools.
I have over 10 years coaching experience with the National Interscholastic Cycling Association, (NICA), and TMBRA. I spent 2 years as an assistant coach for St. Stephens in Austin. In 2013 I helped form the Hudson Bend/Lake Travis (HBLT) cycling team that combined two area middle schools to feed the Lake Travis High School Mountain Bike team. In addition to this, I spent 2 years on the board and as a coach.
In 2015, I changed school districts and founded the Dripping Springs Mountain Bike Team (DSMBT), coaching kids from elementary through high school and established a board of directors to run this non-profit organization. The DSMBT had 4 very successful racing seasons with 3 state champions, 1 state championship and constructed over 12 miles of new single-track trail in the community.
I have spent the last five years on the DUST2 board, two years as President and look forward to continue working with the DUST2 board of directors to create more single track and cycling opportunities in Pagosa Springs.