Commuters in Action: Steve Saltzman and Melissa Malkin-Weber
Steve Saltzman and Melissa Malkin-Weber work at Self Help Lending in downtown Durham, where they’re rewarded for their pedal-powered commuting habit. Every employee who gives up their Self Help parking pass is reimbursed by the company for what maintaining that parking space would otherwise cost Self Help. Given the scarcity of parking in downtown, and the high cost of building new parking, this policy makes good financial sense for Self Help ( and the commuters who take advantage of it), and fits well with the bank’s dual social and financial mission.
Steve has been a bike commuter for three years now. When he first came to Self Help, his commute to work was a fifteen-minute drive in his SUV that left him feeling cranky. Now, after his 6.5 mile bike ride to work, he arrives feeling alert and refreshed. “I never get sick, and now I’ve dropped the costs of one of our cars and a motorcycle,” Steve says. “My hummus consumption has gone way up, though.”
Melissa is the Green Initiatives Manager at Self Help, which is the first place she’s worked where she can bike commute. She walks her kids to school in Morehead Hill, and then rides over to work. “I like being able to interact with my environment instead of being trapped in my steel box,” she says. “Plus there’s the overall coolness factor.”