Big Heavy World Leads Civic Tech Group 'Code for BTV'

Press Release by Big Heavy World. Photo courtesy Code for America.

Burlington’s local Code for America Brigade of civic-minded technologists, Code for BTV,  is experiencing an injection of energy and new leadership: Technology-friendly music nonprofit Big Heavy World has taken on its coordination.

Code for America is a national nonprofit that organizes a network of people dedicated to helping government deliver services to the public better using the tools and practices of the digital age. Code for America Brigades — like Code for BTV in Burlington — are volunteer groups that help create sustainable collaborations between community members, volunteer coders, designers, and organizations to help foster civic services that are simple, effective, and easy to use for everyone.

Code for BTV was established by Bradley Holt and Jason Pelletier with James Lockridge of Big Heavy World in 2013. Since its launch during National Day of Civic Hacking it has showcased local technology talent prolifically; the Brigade has involved 80+ ‘civic hackers’ on over 25 projects — with over 3,000 hours of volunteer time contributed. In 2017 the Brigade will expand its leadership team and bring focus to the areas of building a healthy community, economic development, and safety and justice.

Lockridge said, “Burlington respects technology, collaboration, and the innovative spirit. Code for BTV will continue to bridge these, connecting opportunities with resources and empowering technologist volunteers to make a difference.”

Bradley Holt said, “Big Heavy World was a founding partner of Code for BTV, and has always looked for ways to leverage emerging technology to further their mission. James Lockridge has been a tireless community advocate and I can't think of anyone better to take over the leadership of our local Code for America Brigade. I'm really excited to see where he and the local civic tech community take Code for BTV!” Holt is a Developer Advocate and Senior Software Engineer at IBM Watson Data Platform and a published author.

Jason Pelletier, a technologist and community advocate, said, “James Lockridge has helped shape the civic tech movement in the greater Burlington area and has the context and commitment to continue the work of Code for BTV. His experience mobilizing volunteers will be an asset to Burlington’s civic tech movement.” Pelletier and Holt successfully elevated Code for BTV to official Code for America Brigade status in 2013 and were its original Brigade Captains.

Code for BTV will be hosting an information session and renew hack nights in February; these are events for civic hackers to come together and work on building and reusing civic apps and support open data initiatives. Anyone interested in learning more should email or follow @CodeForBTV on Twitter.

For more information, contact:

James Lockridge,, (802) 865-1140

About Big Heavy World: Big Heavy World is an independent nonprofit music development office working to archive and promote the original music of Vermont. With a crew of mostly high school and college-aged volunteers, it publishes information about Vermont’s music industry, loans a tour van to bands, archives thousands of Vermont-made recordings and photographs, and operates 105.9FM, a radio station highlighting the Chittenden County region’s creative community.

Photo: Code for BTV Brigade Captain James Lockridge with other Code for America Brigade Captains at the Code for America Summit, November 2016, Oakland California. Courtesy Code for America.