Led by her son, Anson, Kristen Campbell is helping change people’s lives one bike at a time

Kristen Campbell When she’s not providing counsel to municipalities, Timmons Law attorney Kristen Campbell is usually in one of three places: on the tennis court, hiking or running the local trails, or helping her 9-year-old son’s nonprofit, Anson’s Bike Buddies, collect, repair and donate bikes to children in need.

Anson, a third grader at Little Oak Montessori in White Salmon, Washington, is an avid cyclist who loves exploring Post Canyon and other Gorge trails with his family. It’s not only fun – it gives him confidence and much-needed time in nature, says Kristen.

A few years ago, when Kristen and Anson were cleaning out their garage, they set aside a bicycle that Anson had outgrown. “He asked me where I would take the bicycle and I explained to him that I would donate it so another boy or girl his age could use it. Before that, he didn’t realize there are people in our community who can’t afford a bicycle.”

That conversation planted a seed. When it was time to start a new class project, Anson decided he wanted to start a nonprofit aimed at getting more bikes out of people’s garages and into the hands of kids in need.

Anson's Bike Buddies With help from Kristen, his father, Jeff Pulk, and mentor Jeff Craven, a Mountain View Cycles bike mechanic, as well as Gorge Soup, Anson started a nonprofit aimed at collecting used bicycles, repairing them and partnering with other local non-profit organizations, such as The Next Door and Cascade Mountain School, to donate the bicycles to Mid-Columbia children who may not otherwise have access to a bicycle.

Known as Anson’s Bike Buddies, the nonprofit has donated nearly 500 bicycles since its inception in February 2015. The program welcomes donations of any kind. They are stored at Cascade Eye Center, which donates a large storage room for Anson’s Bike Buddies. Anson hosts regular “repair parties” where volunteers can get their hands greasy wrenching on bikes. If a bike cannot be repaired for reuse, it’s disassembled and parts are reused on other bikes.

“Because of the enthusiasm and support of the community, this project has taken on a life of its own,” says Kristen. “It’s our goal that it becomes a long-term part of this community. I can’t be more proud of Anson. He is such a compassionate person who has been a great example to all of us. I can’t think of a better cause to donate my legal expertise to.”

To learn how to donate a bike, money or time to Anson’s Bike Buddies, please visit ansonsbikebuddies.org or its Facebook page.