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Devan Tracy ’13 is a mechanical engineer at Lockheed Martin. Last year, she was making the 32-mile round-trip commute to its Corporate Sustainability Office in Bethesda, Md., on her Giant road bike several times a week. In January, her work moved to Lockheed’s Washington, D.C., office, shortening her commute to an easy 12 miles.
Tracy started cycling for transportation in high school. Now it’s a way of life. At Binghamton, she was instrumental in adding bike racks to Hillside Community and to OCCT buses. She also helped start Binghamton University Bike Share, now run by her younger brother, Shane Tracy, a Watson School senior. “At Binghamton, I took part in my first overnight bicycle trip with Binghamton Outdoor Pursuits, where I met one of my idols, Augie Mueller, Outdoor Pursuits founder and retired biology professor.”
After graduating, Tracy bicycled from Portsmouth, N.H., to Vancouver, B.C., with the nonprofit group Bike and Build, which supports affordable housing. “To me, bicycling instills a sense of freedom. Not only is bicycling a vehicle to get from point A to point B, it’s a vehicle for change. Think of empowerment — bikes catalyzed the emancipation of women in the late 19th century.” Tracy is in Lockheed Martin’s Engineering Leadership Development Program, where she currently is an energy analyst. “I develop business cases to integrate alternative sources of energy into our facilities.”
She chose Binghamton in part for its minor in sustainability engineering. “I remember having to memorize the definition of sustainability in Associate Professor Roy McGrann’s sustainable energy class. I also remember having to estimate my annual energy consumption. At the time, I didn’t recognize the value. Now I realize the importance of both translating sustainable activities to fit existing organizational strategies and understanding the overall scale and impact of a proposed change in order to develop a strong business case. “Sustainability is also a personal commitment. From utilizing alternative modes of transportation to supporting the local economy, I enjoy the conveniences of an urban lifestyle. I am involved with the local chapters of the United States Green Building Council and Habitat for Humanity. To me, sustainability is also about maintaining balance in my life, both in and out of work, and filling my free time with things that I truly enjoy.”