Remembering Deb Hubsmith

September 10, 2015

We join many others in mourning the loss of Deb Hubsmith, who passed away on August 18, 2015 after a nearly two-year battle with acute myeloid leukemia.

Deb Hubsmith conducted the first Safe Routes to School program as a pilot program in Marin County, California in 2001. Based on this successful program, she worked with Congressmen Jim Obserstar, then the ranking member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, to promote inclusion of the program in the Federal transportation budget. In 2005, $1.1 billion was included in the Federal transportation budget for a National Safe Routes to School Program. To support the program, and to promote safe walking and biking generally, in 2005 Deb founded the National Partnership for Safe Routes to School, and served as its Executive Director until 2014.

As we think of Deb Hubsmith, we remember a woman who- through her intellect, passion, wisdom and warmth, transformed the way we all think about what is possible in promoting active transportation and children health. Her vision about what is possible through policy, planning and programming was inspirational, and we will miss her leadership and insight.

Further accounts of her Deb Hubsmith’ accomplishments can be found at the National Partnership for Safe Routes to School. A moving tribute to Deb by current Board Chair National Partnership, Risa Wilkerson, can also be found on the site.