SUNY police officer will get bike award

By the Enterprise staff

LAKE PLACID – The New York Bicycling Coalition will recognize Plattsburgh State University police officer Robert Light as the recipient of the 2013 Law Enforcement Bicycling Champion award.

Light will receive the award at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday at Lake Placid Elementary School as part of the Fun on Wheels event, during which cyclists ride to elementary schools in Essex and Clinton counties to distribute and fit helmets for second- and third-grade students.

“For the better part of the past twenty years Officer Light has been working diligently to enhance bicycle safety and he is certainly a Bike Champion,” Jerry Lottie, assistant chief of police at SUNY Plattsburgh, said in a press release.

Light has been a driving force behind the development of the SUNY Plattsburgh police bike patrol program and has promoted the program by leading police mountain bike trainings for hundreds of police officers statewide.

After recovering from his own serious bicycle crash, Light used the experience to educate kids across the North Country on bicycle safety. Working with Safe Kids Adirondack, he initiated bicycle safety education and helmet fitting programs that benefit hundreds of students at local elementary schools. He has also raised thousands of dollars for national charities through bike rides and rallies.

“These programs are a tremendous benefit to our communities,” Kerry Haley, co-chair of Safe Kids Adirondack, said in the release. “We are reaching hundreds of kids every year to make sure they are riding safely, and thanks to Officer Light, we are saving lives.”

The New York Bicycling Coalition is the only statewide organization advocating for the rights of all bicyclists and pedestrians, and promoting the safe use of the bicycle and walking as modes of transportation, sport, recreation, health, environmental protection, energy conservation, tourism and economic development.

“NYBC is committed to improving safety for bicyclists of all ages and abilities, which we can only do with the help of dedicated Bicycle Champions like Officer Light,” Executive Director Josh Wilson said in the release.