Meet Our GNE Ride Coaches!

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The JDRF Greater New England Chapter is excited to introduce our 2023 Ride to Cure Diabetes Coaches! Our coaches provide support to our riders, help set goals, and assist with training plans as requested. Your physical and mental health are important and we believe that continuing to stay active will help with both. If you have any questions about training, registering, or joining us this season please feel to contact Annamaria Lukes at

Doug Cornelius 

Doug is an avid recreational cyclist and bike commuter. He gets to commute along the Charles River from Newton to Boston. Those are just some of the 7,000+ miles he rode on his bike in 2022.  

Doug became involved with JDRF in 2018 when his son was diagnosed with T1D (type 1 diabetes). He’s ridden two JDRF-organized rides and put together two of his own JDRF My Rides during the pandemic.  

Last year he rode the Saratoga Springs Ride on his fixed gear bike: One Gear to Fight Type One. But he’ll have gears on his bike for his JDRF Ride this year to help you get to the finish line.  

Don Cummings 

Don has always had a connection to T1D. His brother was diagnosed in 1971, and T1D continued to impact his family: three of his four sisters live with type 1, and Don himself was diagnosed at the age of 29. Earlier this year, Don’s 13-year-old nephew Max was diagnosed as well. As Don says, “the T1D monster likes us a lot!”. Don’s first JDRF Ride was Asheville in 2007, he survived the Killington Ride in 2009, and he has only missed a couple of years since then. Don joined the Greater New England Chapter as a coach at the 2022 Ride in Saratoga Springs.  

From Don: “For those who have ridden with me before, I was the guy with the green Klein. Coach Mike Clark named it ‘Green Lightning’ which has stuck. That bike has been repaired after I survived being struck by a motorist on the Fourth of July in 2019. I moved to a Cannondale Super Six which took some getting used to as I had never ridden on a carbon frame before. I have not yet come up with a name for this bike. I have toyed with ‘Harmony’ as it is black and white, but I am trying to come up with something a bit more creative.   

I like to climb so most of my individual training rides involve some good hills. I can’t say that I have a ‘favorite’ ride, but I avoid doing out and backs (except during Ride weekend!). I prefer loops through Central Massachusetts that I extend as the season progresses.   

As a T1D cyclist, and one who has benefitted from the availability of T1D management technology, I have participated in several rides and my management protocols have been different for each. For those of you who are T1D and on a pump, I encourage you to explore GlucoseZone®. It is an excellent resource for helping you manage your T1D during all sorts of exercise. I tell you that after attending a seminar at the 2022 TypeOneNation Summit Boston. It was an ‘A-Ha’ moment for me. Before reducing my basal rate by a certain percentage before rides, I was always up and down. One rest stop would see me in the upper 200s, the next in the 70s. I was essentially feeding my insulin. PLEASE talk to your endo before making any changes. I have learned from my siblings that my T1D is not always your T1D. Together, we will defeaT1D!” 

Frank Dougherty 

Frank has been involved with the JDRF Ride program since 2010 as a volunteer, bike room assistant, rider, and coach. His connection to T1D is his daughter, Julia, who was diagnosed in 2009 at the age of 12. Julia has also participated in the Ride as both a rider and volunteer. Frank lives in Marlborough, MA and is willing to travel anywhere for a training ride! 

From Frank: “While I don’t know how many miles I rode last year; I do know that I enjoyed all of them. Some of my favorite rides are training on Cape Cod or the Boston Area; any ride with my daughter Julia, and a new one this year—The Midnight Marathon ride. My favorite saying is ‘That’s not really a hill!’”   

Cathy Ryan 

Cathy lives in Vermont with her husband and two cats. She first got involved with JDRF when she bought a road bike 10 years ago and participated in the JDRF Ride to Cure in Burlington, VT. Her niece has type 1 diabetes, so it seemed like a great ride to do with her new bike. The rest is history! 

Fun fact: That bike Cathy bought 10 years ago is still going strong – it’s the one she’ll use at the JDRF Ride this year. A good reminder that you don’t have to have the newest bike out there. And her bike commute to work (which she tries to do once a week) is partially along the Burlington Ride route!