Every day we like to shine a spotlight on people doing amazing work — both with Charity Miles and without. Today we’re featuring Tom White, a teacher of nearly 30 years and rock star cyclist who rides to work every day.

Here’s what he had to say:

What is your greatest accomplishment as of late?
The most difficult ride I’ve done lately was up to the top of Mt. Constitution. It’s the highest point in the San Juan Islands, which are in northwest Washington State. The ride starts at sea level and tops out at 2408 feet. The attached picture shows me up on the top.
How did you achieve it?
I just kept going. I didn’t want to go back to the hotel and have to tell my family that I “almost made it!”
What motivates you to make the world a better place?
A few years ago I was in Pakistan, speaking at an education conference. I met a man named Mohammad Ayub. He has been teaching underprivileged children in Islamabad for over ten years. He has no building, no supplies and no salary. He teaches in a park, on the ground. As a teacher and a parent, education is very important to me; meeting this man and seeing how he spends his life teaching street children in Pakistan has motivated me to do what I can to improve the world. He’s the reason why I always choose Pencils of Promise when I do Charity Miles.
What do you do to stay healthy and fit?
I ride my bike at least 50 miles every day. Sometimes it’s in the garage on a trainer, but usually it’s outside in the weather.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Winston Churchill once said, “When you’re going through hell…keep going.” I use that when I’m on a tough ride. (Like Mt. Constitution!)
What’s your favorite aspect of using Charity Miles?
It lets me support a charity while doing something I already love doing.
Who do you exercise for, and why?
I exercise mostly for myself. As a teacher, I need time every day when I can reflect and turn inward. That’s what cycling does for me.

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