Inspiration...we are all inspired by people who do things that seem to defy possibility. Whether it is an athletic achievement that teaches us we can exceed any perceived limitation we have, or the incredible creative force of the artist or writer that educates us, or even the selfless actions of volunteers working hard to protect the lives of others...i2P thanks each of these Ambassadors for their hard work in making positive change in the world. More i2P Ambassadors to come !
Jen Segger - Adventure Racer, Ultra Runner
Ever since discovering the multi-sport world several years ago, Jen has dedicated her life to becoming a top endurance competitor. Racing professionally has enabled her to travel the world, meet incredible people and most of all, challenge and push her body in ways she hadn't thought possible. Over the years, she has worked hard and is now racing with and against the best endurance athletes in the world. Jen represented i2P at the Badwater Ultramarathon in 2008. She is the youngest woman ever to complete the 135 mile grueling desert crossing. She finished overall in the Top 10 and is an inspiration to everyone who knows her. See photos of Jen's finish. Find out more about Jen at ChallengeByChoice.ca.
Young, dedicated and passionate Samantha has embraced ultra running as a means to view the world in a unique way. Having completed her first major ultra marathon in RacingThePlanet’s Atacama Crossing (March 2010), she spontaneously set her mind to become the first female and youngest person ever to complete the series GrandSlam in that same year (250kms in Chile, China, Egypt and Antarctica). In 2011 she doubled the distance she had ever run before in completing La Ultra: The High, a 222km non-stop race in the foothills of the Himalayas.
Samantha certainly has a love for the sport but finds the greater reward in being able to use running as a vehicle to raise awareness and funds for charities close to her heart. She is a Patron of Nutrition Plus, an Australian schools-based initiative aiming to engage Indigenous and other low socio-economic children attending those schools, their families and communities in the pursuit of good health with a particular focus on improved nutrition.
In 2012 she will begin a mentoring program with students from Melbourne Girls Grammar. She will train the girls for their first marathon as they raise funds for a chosen charity whilst simultaneously completing their final year in school.
Samantha is approaching the end of a successful Performing Arts/Law degree at Monash University with a graduate position for 2012 already secured at international law firm, Baker & McKenzie. Samantha couldn’t be more excited to be associated to Impossible2Possible as she truly shares the same ideals and vision.
Will Laughlin - Social Network Advisor
Will Laughlin helped launch impossible2Possible with his coach and friend Ray Zahab and current executive director, Bob Cox. Having moved out of day to day operations for i2P, Will supports the i2P mission as an advisor and athletic ambassador. His next event for i2P is a 200 mile non-stop run in the mountains of Colorado to raise funds for Daraja Academy of Kenya. Follow this event at www.ultrawill.squarespace.com.
Will has competed in and won some of the most grueling foot races on the planet, including the Yukon Arctic Ultra, a 100 mile race in temperatures of -65 degrees. In 2008, Will helped organize Ray Zahab's world-record setting run to the South Pole for impossible2Possible. Future adventures include a run from Nicaragua to Panama and a run from Mombasa to El Doret--covering the width of Kenya.
When Will isn't running for charity, he is a writer and brand strategist who helps companies discover and articulate their most authentic and compelling identity. He has degrees from UC Berkeley and Stanford University. Will's heart for Daraja Academy is informed by many years working with and on behalf of youth in education and mental health companies.
Hayley Wickenheiser - Olympic Gold Medalist, Humanitarian
A native of Shaunavon, Saskatchewan, Hayley Wickenheiser has lived in Calgary, Alberta for the past eighteen years where she not only trained, but also pursued a BSc degree at the University of Calgary. Her talent is unsurpassed. Having recently been named Team Captain, she was the Assistant Captain of Canada’s gold medal-winning teams at the 2002 Salt Lake City and 2006 Torino Winter Olympics and named the MVP in both games. Wickenheiser is strong and skilled; a natural with a lethal slap shot, and rightfully described as the greatest female hockey player in the world.
At age 15, Wickenheiser was chosen for the Canadian women’s National Team. She has since led the Canadian Women’s National squad to six gold and two silver medals at the Women’s World Hockey Championships, a silver medal at the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan and two Olympic Gold medals at the Winter Olympics in 2002 and 2006.
Time and time again, Wickenheiser has proven to be an elite athlete. Honoured with the title of Most Valuable Player in numerous Esso Women’s Hockey Championships, a First Team All-Star in all seven of her World Championship appearances, and a participant in two Philadelphia Flyers’ rookie camps in 1998 and 1999, Wickenheiser has earned the praise and admiration of players and coaches alike.
On January 11, 2003 Wickenheiser took an enormous step forward in her on-ice career when she skated into history as the first female hockey player to notch a point in a men’s professional game, the Kirkkonummen Salamat of the Finnish second division. Sports Illustrated recently named her Number 20 of the "Top 25 Toughest Athletes In the World". Aside from a phenomenal on-ice career, Wickenheiser has mastered a number of sports. An elite softball player, she participated in the 2000 Summer Olympics as a member of Team Canada. But, no matter what she is playing, Wickenheiser’s personal motto is "Excellence and Professionalism."
Hayley works with many local charities and schools focusing on children and environmental issues. Dreams Take Flight, KidSport, Clean Air Champions and Spread The Net are some to name a few. In May 2007, Hayley traveled to Rwanda with a Canadian Team of Olympic Athletes for RIGHT TO PLAY, an athlete driven humanitarian organization. She is currently working to launch a professional development program called ‘Go For Gold’, which will raise funds for Right To Play and KidSport.
Hayley currently lives in Calgary, Alberta, with her partner Tomas and young son Noah. She plans to play in the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver and most recently signed to return to men’s pro hockey for the 08-09 season with Div. 1 Linden Hockey. In October 2006, a children’s book on her career titled "Born To Play" hit bookshelves across Canada.
To learn more about Hayley, please go to www.hayleywickenheiser.com
Adam Lewandowski - Volunteer
While spending 5 weeks volunteering this spring in Moshi and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania Adam got to meet several hard-working people that were limited by their financial situations. One of these people is Christopher Ebiat Komba. Chris was born in Arusha, Tanzania and is 19 years old. He has completed high school and has always dreamed of becoming an English teacher. Unfortunately, with his father having passed away in 2005, Chris, being the oldest sibling, has been left to care for his mother and to support his younger brother and sister through their school. His full-time job as a student teacher where he makes $40 a month does not even come close to being enough to do all of this as well as pay for his own way to university to become a teacher, which is a four year program costing $1500 US per year. Seeing Chris’ drive and dedication to academics and his desire to help others learn was very refreshing and something that Adam believes is crucial for the advancement of this East African country. He has taken on the challenge to raise enough money for Chris to go to university and have some money for his family as well. Adam is so far at $4,600 and would like to surpass $6,000 to help Chris realize his dreams. For more information, please see the facebook group Help Chris Komba go to university in Tanzania! and see the end of the Description section if you would like to know how to make a donation.
I have been assigned to the Botswana Predator Conservation Trust (BPCT) in Maun, Botswana as a Program Assistant for BPCT’s primary social program: Coaching for Conservation. BPCT was founded as the Botswana Wild Dog Research Project in 1989 and has expanded to cover all the large carnivore species in Botswana. BPCT research on wild dogs has made it very clear that the health and welfare of the entire predator population is a key indication of overall health of the ecosystem.
Coaching for Conservation responds to the key question: "how can we have the most impact with our conservation efforts?" It strives to engender a sense of community and self-respect among participants, to reinforce healthy core values and link conservation and environmental issues to real health and lifestyle decisions in developing Botswana.
I will be working to acquire essential knowledge regarding the behavioral ecology and communication systems of Africa's large predator guild and to apply this knowledge to promote solutions for the preservation of Africa's large predators and their habitats. I will also be striving to link conservation and environmental issues to health and good decision making in the ongoing development of rural Botswana.
My aims are:
i) to promote the sustainability of threatened and endangered carnivore species and their habitats in Botswana through research, education and management,
ii) to train and mentor the people of Botswana to be the conservationists and wildlife custodians of the future, and
iii) to support ongoing successful management programs and to develop and apply new techniques that sustainably protects threatened carnivores in their natural habitats and ecosystems.
This opportunity will provide me with necessary experience for future work that I aspire to do with Doctors Without Borders and will also allow me to apply my skills obtained through my studies in the biological sciences here at the University of Guelph. In addition, this program will provide me with life experiences that I will be able to apply to future volunteer work here in Canada and abroad, as well as allow me to grow as an individual as a result of experiencing and being immersed in a new cultural setting.
Majka Burhardt - Writer, Climber and Guide
Majka Burhardt is a writer, climber, and guide. Based in Boulder, Colorado, her experiences enable her to take on assignments not only in North America, but throughout the world. Majka is focused on asking how to make adventure additive-- when adventure goes beyond exploration and toward cultural and environmental connection. She's released a film, Waypoint Namibia, and is author of Vertical Ethiopia: Climbing Toward Possibility in the Horn of Africa, (Shama,2008). Vertical Ethiopia was shortlisted for the Banff Book Award.
Majka's worked as a climbing guide for over a decade and often writes for publications including Men’s Health, Patagonia, Alpinist, Women's Adventure, The Explorers Journal, and Climbing, where she is the voice behind the column "Whipped." Majka’s blog, The Liminal Line, can be found on her website.
Majka an MFA in Creative Writing from the Warren Wilson Program for Writers and received her BA in Anthropology from Princeton University. She merges these backgrounds with her passion for the outdoors and adventure in her writing and speaking.
Tim Borland - Ultra Runner
Tim began running in 1997 with the determination to lose weight and get into shape. His determination grew into passion and this passion has driven him to use his running to help others and make a difference in the world. Inspired by his own children, Tim's core desire and commitment is to "help children in need".
Last fall Tim set out on what proved to be a life-changing journey, traveling across the U.S., as he and his family embarked on the A-T CureTour. His purpose and mission was to help advance the work of an organization fighting a rare and fatal children's disease, Ataxia Telangetasia. Tim ran a full 26.2 miles each day while pushing a mobility-jogging stroller for 63 days in 63 different communities across the U.S. Many believed the A-T CureTour was the beginning and the end of his contribution to organization making a difference in the world. But the successful completion of the tour was life changing and only deepened his passion and longing to continue to make a difference!
Dr. Stefania Licari - Ultra runner, Medical Doctor
UK based Stefania Licari has been a passionate long distance runner for 20 years.
In 2007, she completed and finished third in one of the toughest ultra marathons on earth: the Jungle Marathon, a 200km foot race across the Amazon.
She has now taken an extraordinary challenge to inspire young people and explore new horizons of endurance for the mind and body: 1,000 miles non-stop across Morocco over 4 weeks this coming October. She is embarking on this journey with Graeme Waterworth, expert ultra runner and Chinese Medicine practitioner. The journey will be filmed and produced as a DVD.
With her Morocco adventure, Stefania is hoping to inspire and engage a generation of youth to reach for their best, and test their limits…
For information, go to www.go4extremes.com
WHY first took shape in 1995 in Winnipeg Manitoba, when Brian Cook(vocalist) chose to see his musical ideas take form. Quickly rounding up some of the best players the local scene had to offer, their first album"THE NAKED SOUL",and it with 2002's "THE RISE AND FALL OF THE QUESTION MARK" which drew fans and critics alike to their energy fueled live shows. As years passed and other commitments took hold, Brian continued to write and began to dedicate time to Make Poverty History. First introduced to the idea by heroes Bono (U2) and Bob Geldof (LIVE AID,LIVE 8,Boomtown Rats), Cook felt the need to use his music to raise awareness to the staggering true fact that a child dies due to extreme poverty every 3 seconds. Fellow band mates Greg Barre, Stephan Makarewicz and Derek James followed suit and the song and CD “LAZARUS EFFECT” was born from the collective desire to use music to draw attention to the AIDS pandemic. "LAZARUS EFFECT", which received air play in major markets across Canada, were also given out before U2 concerts in Ottawa and Montreal available on line at CDBABY.COM. A portion of the proceeds from the album went directly to OXFAM in the name of MAKE POVERTY HISTORY(as cause close to the 4 members of WHY) and the album's artwork featured heartbreaking photographs all supplied by Make Poverty History,(in the UK). The album also offered links to the Make Poverty History websites. Now with the release of their new album "RED", WHY continue to raise awareness for both themselves as well as Make Poverty History. The new full length WHY CD "RED", featuring the single,(and title track) "RED" has been received well by various radio stations worldwide. "RED" sat at 1 on the KICK FM Winnipeg TOP 40 for 4 weeks in a row, and was named SONG OF THE YEAR. “RED” was used on Brad Pitt’s MYSPACE For just over 2 month.The follow up single "THE SURFACE" has started to chart hitting 1 on KICK FM and 5 on THE Q FM in Victoria BC. Also it has received airplay from THE GOAT in Alberta, FREQ 107 in Winnipeg, (both singles have been receiving radio support at) DOWN FM in Northern Ireland, and radio in Australia. Yes WHY is not signed to a major label,(yet) but the songs on WHY’s latest album “RED” can not be over looked.
WHY CDs can be purchased online at: www.cdbaby.com/whytheband2 and on iTUNES.
Jodi Bigelow - Adventure Racer
Jodi is a veteran adventure racer, and Kayaker. His padding has allowed him the opportunity to travel and explore many parts of the world both as a guide and competitively. Guiding multi-day excursions in Northern Canada, the US and Costa Rica. As an athlete, Jodi has competed in several World Championships and has been crowned Canadian Wildwater Champion. Lately he has been pushing his limits in ultra - marathon events like the Yukon River Quest (740 km) and in the writing on his first book “Kayaking for Fitness”
Jodi brings his passion for the outdoors and adventure into the lives of his students daily in Ottawa where he works as a high school teacher. He believes strongly that the spirit of adventure needs to be nurtured for the youth of today. He is organizing a youth adventure training and leadership development program this September for I2P.
To find out more go to: www.paddlefit.com
Starting in January 2009, Norma will set out to run seven of the planet’s most unforgiving environments on five separate continents in one year. Norma will be running through the thick jungles and the driest deserts in the world all in support of the blind and visually impaired.
Although this journey will take her around the world, the cause is something that hits home for Norma. Two years ago, Norma’s oldest son Karl, now 13, was diagnosed with Cone Rod Dystrophy, a progressive eye condition with no cure that can potentially lead to blindness.
Norma has chosen to support an international initiative to show her son Karl that he is not alone – that there are people around the world who are as strong and amazing as he is. She also believes her work will show both her children that we can all have a positive impact on other people’s lives and change the world around them. For information, go to mexicanrunningwild.blogspot.com
Darcy has competed in over 40 ultra trail running events in the past 6 years, twelve of which were 100-milers. One of her greatest running accomplishments was finishing the Grand Slam of Ultra running, which includes completing 4 of the most demanding hundred mile races in just 4 months. Darcy has finished the majority of her Ultra races on the podium and completed the Grand Slam with the fastest overall combined time for both men and women. In 2006, Darcy was awarded the Everest Award for Trail Runner of the Year.
In addition to Ultra running, Darcy has also raced in several adventure races, including Eco Challenge New Zealand.
Darcy holds a Masters degree in Counseling Psychology and when not running works with adolescents and families as a school-based intervention specialist in Boulder, Colorado and occasionally leads therapeutic wilderness expeditions for the Outward Bound School.
November 2009, Meagan McGrath will journey, solo, over 1130km on foot, unassisted and unsupported from the coast of Antarctica to the South Pole, dragging 285lbs of food, fuel, equipment in a sled for 60 days. With only a moment to rest, Meagan will then attempt to climb, unguided and without oxygen, six of the world’s tallest mountains, including Mount Everest, in an effort to become the First Canadian to summit the world’s 14 highest mountains, all exceeding 8000m in height. All of this adventure in a one-year period promises to be one of those rare and exciting expeditions that tests the will, daring and skill of any adventurer - let alone a young woman who's desire it is to demonstrate that life is worth living and experiencing. Meagan McGrath has climbed many peaks throughout the world. In May 2007, Meagan summitted Mount Everest, achieving her goal to climb the Seven Summits - the highest mountain on each Continent. In January 2008, she became the First Canadian Woman to summit the Carstenz Pyramid version of the Seven Summits, becoming the only Canadian woman to achieve both versions of this mountain challenge. You're invited to follow Meagan on her adventures by visiting: www.meaganmcgrathadventurer.com
Blake is the main local contact for makepovertyhistory.ca for the wood buffalo region of Alberta and recently named an official blogger for makepovertyhistory.ca as well. He also founded an Oxfam volunteer group in Northern Alberta. Back in 2005, he became part of the makepovertyhistory.ca campaign. During that time Blake and two other friends decided to raise awareness by sending a banner across Canada and then delivering it to the Prime Minister. From there many organizations including Oxfam took the banner as well as it being present at the U2 shows in Canada. Blake and friends managed to collect close to 20,000 signatures along with Bono and delivered it to the Prime Minister's Office. Oxfam was the organization that stood out during the campaign. Since starting an Oxfam community group, Blake and team have organized events such as a Hungry 4 Change banquet, Music 4 Change fundraisers and tabling at local festivals. Blake has visited Africa and worked as an educator and care giver to children who are affected by the H.I.V crisis. Because of this he dedicated his first Ironman to raising funds for the orphanges he visited while in Tanzania. Blake is a firm believer that we can use sport to raise awareness and social conscience towards our fellow brothers and sisters. No one should live without the basic essential services to live. That includes clean water, sanitation, education, health and equality for women. More Info.
Marnie McBean is one of Canada's most decorated Olympians,
and an expert in turning potential into performance. As one
of only two Canadians ever to win three Gold medals in the
Summer Olympics, she is used to performing under pressure.
Her 12 World and Olympic medals bear witness to this. After
a record-breaking rowing career, she is now Manager of
Olympic Preparation with the Canadian Olympic Committee. In
the years leading up to the 2008 Beijing Olympics, she
worked closely with athletes to prepare, emotionally and
psychologically, helping to transform their potential into
reality. She has the same role leading up to the 2010
Vancouver Games. Her job, simply, is to ensure the highest
A member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame and the Guinness Book of World Records, and a recipient of the Governor General's Medal, McBean, concurrent to her Olympic career, also managed to finish a degree in Kinesiology from the University of Western Ontario. She is also actively involved in helping to promote the safety, health and activity of Canada's youth as well as many sport and athlete development groups.
Greg Leo is relatively new to the running scene. Having been a competitive swimmer while growing up, he developed a love for being active. After falling into a sedentary lifestyle in his 20’s he decided to get back into the swing of things by joining a local masters swim team; this lead to getting ranked top 10 by US Masters Swimming and brought a feeling of rejuvenation. Swimming segued into running by happenstance while on vacation. Without a good pool to train in he decided to try going for a run, a year later he was hooked into his first marathon. Four years later and Greg is now an established full time personal trainer and a marathon maniac. Greg decided to become a personal trainer to help others lead a more fit and active lifestyle. As a former smoker, he knows that if he can quit the vices and turn his life around, anyone can. He hopes to complete 10 – 12 marathons this year and 6 triathlons, including his first Ironman distance. Greg truly wants to share a "no limits" approach to life with young people !
Hannah McKeand - Explorer
Having got a degree in Classics at Lampeter University and working as both Marketing Manager then Head of Touring for the Watermill Theatre in Newbury for seven years, at 31 Hannah finally fully committed herself to her primary passion - exploring.
In 2001 the urge to explore began to develop with an expedition to the Western Desert on the borders of Egypt, Libya and Sudan with a Hungarian lead expedition in search of prehistoric rock art. This extraordinary adventure took Hannah to the centre of the second biggest wilderness on the planet, an uninhabited area the size of India, and the sand and space got into her head. For the next three years Hannah continued to return to the deep desert twice a year.
In 2004 Hannah joined a British expedition to explore the isolated Wakan Corridor in the northeast of Afghanistan in search of the source of the River Oxus. The upper regions of this remote mountain valley can only be reached on foot by crossing several high altitude passes and has rarely been visited by westerners.
Later in 2004 Hannah finally turned to a cold desert and discovered her true calling. in an epic 56 day expedition skiing the 690 miles and 10 degrees from the coast of Antarctica to the geographic South Pole, crossing the vast and monotonous expanse of one of the harshest environments in the world, the team of five battled with physical and mental exhaustion, frostbite, injury, hunger and some of the lowest temperatures on earth.
In 2006 Hannah and her partner David Pryce founded Blizzard Expeditions and has ever since been mounting high latitude sailing expeditions with the 65 foot aluminium schooner The Blizzard all around Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. In 2007 The Blizzard completed a full circumnavigation of Antarctica.
In November/December 2006 Hannah returned to Antarctica and once again skied from Hercules Inlet to the South Pole, but this time solo and unsupported. She set a new world record for the journey of 39 days 9 hours and 33 minutes.
In 2007 Hannah was made a North Face Team Athlete; won the Sue Ryder Woman of the Year award and featured in the Guinness Book of Records.
In March 2008 Hannah set off from Ward Hunt Island in Canada in an attempt to become the first woman to ski solo and unsupported to the geographic North Pole. Unfortunately she fell into a crevasse and injured her shoulder and had to be evacuated. She intends to return to the Arctic in March 2010 for another attempt. This expedition is the ultimate challenge in polar travel and one of the last great expedition firsts left in the world.
Hannah now works as a polar guide and consultant and hopes that by writing and speaking about her experiences in the world and sharing them, then she will inspire people to go after their own dreams and achieve their own goals.
Mehmet Danis - Adventure Racer
Mehmet Danis is a Canadian adventure Racer, a dental surgeon and a Captain in the Canadian Forces. In the 2008 GOBI March he placed 6th overall, the top Canadian and earned the award for 1st place in the 30-39 age group. After training under the guidance of Ray Zahab, Mehmet took on his second desert race and won the Atacama Crossing 2009.
He is currently preparing for the Sahara Race 2009 which will take place this October in Egypt. Mehmet truly believes and lives a philosophy that all is possible with hard work, dedication and passion.
"Nothing Great is Easy"
In 2004, Matt Nelson - a father of 4 - met up with a 5 year old boy named Ben McDonald. Ben is the son of one of Matt's friends. Ben has a brain tumor. The problem was, no one was hunting for a cure. In 2005, Matt founded the The Endurance Trust and teamed up with the PLGA Foundation to help bring awareness to the cause and to raise money to find a cure. In July of 2009, The Endurance Trust made it's transformation and became a resource for the Endurance community and dramatically expanded the impact of it's fundraising efforts. The Trust now champions several children's causes including Autism, Children's Cancers and now partners with i2P. The Endurance Trust also serves as a conduit that enables endurance athletes in all disciplines to channel their efforts, find sponsorship and make a difference in the lives of kids. The Trust also provides yearly scholarships for athletes under 18 years, paying race entry fees in each of 6 different race disciplines.
A former Major in the US Marine Corps with a background in Survival Training and Navigation, a Technical SCUBA Diving Instructor and an avid adventure junkie, he is dedicated to the Endurance Sports community. Matt routinely competes in, volunteers for and crews for endurance events, believing that the commitment to the sport goes beyond just running the race. He is a veteran of Expedition Adventure Races and has competed internationally and throughout the US on various teams as the lead navigator. His current focus is in running Ultra Marathons and Expedition Ultras. Matt has done multi-day Expedition Adventure Races and Ultras in Europe, Canada, Egypt, China, Chile, Namibia, New Zealand and throughout the United States. In December of 2008, Matt completed a 5 day, 250 mile solo run from Marco Island, FL, across the Everglades to Key Largo and South to Key West (The FEAR 250/5) to raise money for Pediatric Brain Tumor Research. In 2010, he will compete in major races in Australia and Antarctica, completing the RTP 4 Deserts and having competed in endurance races of 150 miles or more on all 7 continents. Matt currently lives in the West Palm Beach, Florida with his wife (an endurance open water swimmer & Ironman Triathlete) and his kids.
Visit endurancetrust.org for more info.
Tim Ho Chow
I am a social entrepreneur who just graduated from Rhode Island School of Design with my Industrial Design Degree. Born in Singapore and grew up in Hong Kong, I have traveled and lived in various parts of the world. I came to the United Sates 4 years ago to finish my degree, and have devoted a good amount of time to community building and bettering the world. One of the biggest events I ran was a national conference called “A Better World by Design”, where we apply design to change the world through solving social and environmental problems. We invited 30 world-renowned speakers and connected with local businesses.
Since then, I have been invited to TED as a Fellow. I have started my own business consultancy to use design and creative thinking to help non-profit organizations and companies reach their potential in bettering the world.
This summer, I am riding my bike from Providence, RI to Seattle, WA, raising money and awareness for affordable housing. I have partnered with BeDo, Changents and flickr to help spread the word and tell my story.
Steven was born in 1982 and grew up in East Windsor, New Jersey. Involved in athletics and adventures ever since he could walk, Steven harbors a strong belief that the mind and the body work with each other and for each other. Always a person who would rather play than watch, Steven has turned his energy into positive contributions toward various charities, namely Huntington's Disease Society of America ("HDSA"). Throughout the past decade, he has been actively involved in HDSA's various basketball "Hoop-a-thons", "Variedy" shows, and independent fund-raising sports tournaments.
In 2008, Steven decided to create his own charity. With the collaboration of good friend and athletic teammate Dan Bowen, Steven formed "In Motion For a Million" in August of 2008. Throughout the past year, IMFM has been working to set up a cross-country rollerblading trek across America (the athletes are set to embark on the trek in the late fall of 2009). Fueled by a passion and enthusiasm for health and humanity, the team is thrilled to be "in motion" for many great causes.
Steven believes that "It's too late now" are the four worst words in the English language. Get out there, live your dreams, and make a difference...TODAY!
For more information, please visit www.inmotionforamillion.org.
John Huston and Tyler Fish
John Huston and Tyler Fish are the first Americans to reach the North Pole unassisted and unsupported. They accomplished this feat, which has been called "the hardest trek on the planet", on April 25, 2009. The two departed the northernmost point in North America, Ward Hunt Island, Canada on March 2, 2009. The spent the next 55 days skiing and snowshoeing to the North Pole, taking no rest days along the way. John and Tyler fiercely believe in the optimistic capacity of all people and situations. Visit their expedition website http://www.forwardexpeditions.com/
John resides in Chicago, IL where he runs the expedition office. He next goal is to take on the hardest ironman triathlon in the world, The Norseman Xtreme Triathlon in Norway, August 2010. http://www.nxtri.com/ He has previously skied to the South Pole, covered 1400 miles on the Greenland ice cap and managed logistics for other polar expeditions.
Tyler lives in Ely, MN where he directs the youth-at-risk Intercept Program for Outward Bound. http://www.outwardbound.org/ Tyler is an elite cross-country ski racer, a passionate educator and skilled family counselor.
Laurel has been an active outdoors person all of her life. An avid whitewater paddler and nature enthusiast, she is dedicated to preserving, protecting, and promoting the local rivers. Laurel has a vision of connecting and building the youth “body” within Ottawa Riverkeeper. She is a Mom, and grandmother with a strong picture of what the future should hold for tomorrows young adults. Her community involvement has also included being an advisor for the Venturers section within Scouts Canada, and is currently an active member/volunteer of the the YCCC Canoe and Camping Club, and on the Board of Directors for the Ottawa Riverkeeper. She assists her partner in instructing both flat and moving water courses, and as much as possible can be found on the river or organizing a river event. She is also a ½ marathon runner, with visions of becoming a legitimate "marathoner" - with a cause - I run because "I can" - Two small words that pack a lot of power.
For Laurel’s first marathon she is heading South to Raleigh, North Carolina, to run in the City of Oaks Marathon. During her training for this marathon, the brother of two colleagues from work was very suddenly diagnosed with T-Cell Lymphoma. "This day by day struggle of Elie’s became part of my mental framework while I trained and got the updates on how Elie was doing. I ran, prayed, hoped, and motivated myself to keep working it. The fundamental push was that my run became purposeful. Someone ( Elie ) couldn’t run right now, but right now - I can - I will run for him."
Elie Naufal fought a very tough battle that ended within 3 weeks, as he lost his fight with this dreadful disease, and left his family, his two young children, and wife so very early in life. In his honour, and for those yet to walk the same road - the fight has to go on.
Action creates energy, energy can create momentum that we can funnel into driving our goals into reality. The action I invite you to take action by supporting Dr. Huebsch and his Team at the Ottawa hospital (that worked tirelessly to save Elie), through the Ottawa Hospital Foundation. Here is the link, https://secure.e2rm.com/registrant/memoriam.aspx?EventID=1819&LangPref=en-CA and please write Elie Naufal in the box marked "name of the deceased", in the comments section at the bottom of the form, write " Run for Elie ".
Think - "We Can".
Rick Ball lost his left leg below the knee in 1986 in a motorcycle accident that was not his fault. It was a devastating blow for an active, energetic and ambitious young man of 21 but he did not let it diminish his life. He went to work for the Toronto Transit Commission in Toronto, Canada and stayed in good physical condition through cycling.
In 2007, Rick was fitted with a new high-tech carbon fiber prosthetic leg and decided to take up long distance running at age 40. That was the start of an amazing story of determination and sheer guts that has been, and will continue to be, a source of great inspiration for anyone facing obstacles to their dreams.
This past April 2009, Rick not only ran in the Boston Marathon but set a new world record for single amputee marathoners, running the killer 42-kilometre course in three hours, one minute and 50 seconds, beating the existing record by more than two minutes. You may have seen him on CBC TV’s The National when he returned home from Boston.
One month later he set a new world record for the 10K Marathon at the Nordion Ottawa 10K Marathon. In September 2009 he ran the Army Run half marathon for another world record in one hour, twenty minutes and forty four seconds. Rick has competed in a number of other running events, including charity events, and earlier this year was named Orillia’s Athlete of the Year out of an impressive lineup of candidates.
After Boston, Rick was invited to join the Canadian Paralympics Team at their training camp in Windsor and will in all likelihood be competing for Canada in the 2012 London Paralympics, a dream he has had since he began running.
Rick also devotes time to talking to groups of schoolchildren, encouraging them to pursue their dreams whatever obstacles they face.
Jay Solman, Marc Bremner and Lara Rintoul met several years ago at a Vancouver area marathon clinic. Over the years the 3 have trained together for numerous marathons, ultras and trail races. While celebrating their success at the 2008 Death Valley Trail Marathon Marc and Jay had been taking about Marc's grand daughter who has Cystic Fibrosis, if only there was a way to turn their love of running into a way to help children like her. Later that summer the group created Team Trailwinders as they set their sights on the 2009 Sahara Race in Egypt. Through hard work and the support of the community the team has raised over $7,000 in donations for Variety Children’s Charities. The team has organized mini-sahara race fundraisers at local schools and has received overwhelming support from the community and media. After the Sahara Race the Team will continue to participate in adventures as a way to support charities that help children and their families. There's a great Tibetan saying that the Team lives by "The peak of a mountain is not too high and the bottom of the ocean is not too deep as long as you have exertion." Essentially, nothing is impossible if you work for it! www.trailwinders.com.
Nathalie Samson and Jeff Dean
We are regular every day folks, just like you. We have a day job with great corporations, 3 kids from a blended family, daily chores and a big Bernese Mountain Dog named Denver.
A year ago, Nathalie’s goal was to run a half marathon. Jeff wanted to see if he could run and how far after finally giving up smoking. So in 2009 Nat ended up running the Ultimate XC 58km and Vermont Ultra 50k. Jeff did both and was a solo finisher in the Canadian Death Race.
While in Cambodia in 2008, Jeff became aware of the fact that clean drinking water is not as available as you might think. Wells are dug in many areas to help provide access to drinkable water but even then, the water can be undrinkable.
After a long run during the summer, they started talking about how important water was to their running and ‘what if we could provide just one family with access to reliable, clean, drinking water without having to buy bottled water’. They doubted they could change the world, but one life, that was something they might be able to do.
Their upcoming adventure, in Cambodia, is to run from Angkor Wat to Preah Vihear, on the border of Cambodia and Thailand, a distance of more than 250 kilometers. It is something they actually had not even dreamed of, who would? Really, is it not easier to watch Survivor re-runs on TV?
One Filter, One Family became their little project, a dream really. That was until friends and family started putting coin and more in the ‘Fear change’ growler that sits on our kitchen counter…..Now they are ‘Running Cambodia’ in the hopes of changing just one life. Normal regular folks just like you. One is all it takes...
Follow them on their journey at
Join the fun in the future: http://ultimatexc.com/cambodiar.html
Steve, at 21, the healthy happy college student had a battle with cancer. After surgery and 3 brutal months of chemo he won.
Post Cancer Steve entered at dark period of daily substance abuse. Angered by a world that he felt nearly killed him, figuring he was destined to die young, he continued this path of destruction for 9 years.
On April 25th 2003, he was arrested for DUI and taken to jail. "I was alone in my cell for 3 hours. It was then that I realized what I had done. I let everybody down, everyone that had worked so hard to give me a chance at beating cancer, a second chance at life and this is how I repay them. No way. I decided at that moment that I was going to change my life. Somehow repay the people of the world for my gift of life. I had absolutely no idea how - but I was going to try."
The next day he got up and went for a run, and he’s been running ever since. In 4 months, he’d lost 50lbs and ran a half marathon. To date, Steve has run dozens of races, from 5km to 160km as well as the Muskoka 70.3 Ironman Triathlon. He’s currently a running instructor with the running room where he helps people get started running and keep healthy.
Next year Steve is planning on running 12,000km across the Canadian Rail Trail, raising money for the Testicular Cancer Foundation and bringing awareness to young men the dangers that exist from testicular Cancer, and how to beat it. Being active, healthy and fit gives you the best opportunity to live and accomplish anything. Follow Steve’s story at www.stevegaul.com
Chris Christie resides in Southwestern British Columbia close to the towering granite walls of the Squamish Chief. Here he has found a balance between living in the big mountains of the Whistler region and on the fringe of city life as a Fire Fighter in West Vancouver.
For the past 25years he has been in search of adventures in many different adrenaline type sports. Cycling was his first passion riding for both the provincial road team followed by a short stint on the Canadian National Team and then moved onto the roads of Belgium. With a solid fitness base he began to mix endurance events with mountain pursuits and adventure racing. From 1st ascents on rock and ice to 1st descents in the Coast Mountains on skis and then standing on the podium at the World Police Fire Games Cycling events, Chris has achieved personal successes in many disciplines and it was a natural transition to start documenting these moments through photojournalism. This has opened up many opportunities to travel and play a part in exploration or the capturing of athletes pushing the boundaries of their sport.
Chris’s strong versatile background has allowed him to stay a step ahead of the action and catch that special moment through the eye of the lens with images published in virtually every major outdoor magazine worldwide.
Theresa Carriere was born in Sault Ste. Marie to Sam and Jenny Colizza as the 10th child a family of 13 children. The Colizzas are a close knit family who value time spent together and with friends.
Theresa attended Mount St Joseph College, an all girl’s Catholic high school, where she excelled both academically and athletically. After leaving "the Sault" she attended the University of Western Ontario in London and found her niche playing varsity basketball. Her career in fitness began at Fanshawe College. Theresa enrolled in the Fitness Health Promotion program from which she graduated in 1986. During her years at Fanshawe, Theresa was voted female athlete of the year in both 1985 and in 1986. She was subsequently named to the All-Millennium Women's Basketball College Team 2000, and was inducted in the Ontario College Athletic Association Hall of Fame in 2005.
It was also at Fanshawe where Theresa met her husband Bill Carriere and together they have 4 children, Nicole (19), Danielle (16), Katelyn (15) and Vincent (12). Theresa’s interest and passion for fitness continued as she became a certified fitness instructor and personal trainer working with GoodLife Fitness. This led to her current position as Coordinator of the fitness program at London Life. Theresa also trains area athletes and works with competitive teams at the provincial and national level. Both Theresa and Bill have a huge presence in the community as coaches for Ramblers basketball.
In April of 2007 Theresa went for her routine annual physical. Although she was only 43 and without a history of breast cancer, she insisted on a mammogram. Within a few weeks, she received a call from her doctor with the news that she had breast cancer and needed to start a treatment program immediately. She ultimately underwent a double mastectomy, thanks to the support of friends, family and an incredible medical staff at London Health Sciences.
Theresa will be running 100 kilometres from London to Sarnia on June 25, 2010 through a fundraising initiative called "ONE RUN". Theresa’s mission through ONE RUN is to raise money for breast cancer research - possibly ending this disease so that her daughters, nieces and friends will not have to endure it. Her wish is to give hope to others with breast cancer, for them to see that it can be beaten. Her wish is to bring thousands of people together and to motivate them to begin a journey of their own. Her wish is to teach her children that one person can make a difference.
As runners, we are all too familiar with the challenge of finding motivation. We must continuously challenge ourselves, set higher goals, and push through our perceived limits. Angie will be pushing her limits for a great cause this coming summer, by running her first ever marathon in Iceland in support of Team Diabetes Canada. This is Angie’s story about how she got into running, and how it has influenced her to take on this challenge.
Throughout her life, Angie has always struggled to find motivation to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Only about 3 years ago, a friend of Angie’s asked her if she would like to start running together for mutual support. Angie was initially hesitant at the idea of running, with bad experiences in the past, but decided to give it a shot anyway.
They started running on a regular basis and trained with a 5km clinic. For the first time in her life, Angie felt like she could actually do this! By surrounding herself with positive people who shared a similar passion she became more positive and started to love life again. She started running with her dog 4-5 times a week, and dropped from a size 12 to 7. Angie soon moved up to the 10km clinic, then to the half marathon clinic, where she eventually became a group leader. After that, Angie decided to take it to the next level, and combine three passions in life: a love for helping others, a love for running, and her love for traveling. She signed on with Team Diabetes Canada to run her first ever marathon in Iceland this August 2010! By doing so, she is looking to raise $6100 for the Canadian Diabetes Association. It’s a huge challenge, but another one that she is willing to take on. She’s also very appreciative of the overwhelming support from her friends and family. To stay motivated, Angie has developed a mantra:
"Runners have good days and bad days. Keep your head up, take one step at the time, and push through it. You've made it this far; anything is possible."
Angie has also recently discovered that she is Hypoglycemic. With this condition, she realizes how very important it is to maintain a healthy lifestyle, as diabetes is a major health issue in Canada. Type II diabetes used to only be associated with adulthood, but now “youth obesity” is practically synonymous with the term. Children as young as 9 years old are being diagnosed with type II diabetes as a result of youth obesity.
Research has proven that the onset of diabetes can be prevented and even reversed through a healthy lifestyle of exercise and nutrition. For this reason, Angie supports Team Diabetes Canada and will be raising money for extensive research along with youth camps for diabetic children that provide education and special services. But she needs your help! Please help Angie raise $6100+ for Team Diabetes Canada by visiting her Facebook Group or you can donate directly to her Fundraising Campaign.
Fundraising Campaign hyperlink
Running far has revealed to Shirlee, the inherent power that lie in seeking an adventure filled life. She has completed numerous ultra-distance events, including 50k and 50 and 100 milers, as well as the Rock and Ice Ultra, a partially supported 3 day/3 stage foot and showshoe race in Yellowknife, NT. She believes strongly that attributes such as bravery, trust, confidence and empathy, developed by one's self, move people to create strong communities governed by one major principal: Hightened human awareness inspires connectiveness to one another. As co-founder of RunbyRun, an association geared towards local youth and trail running, as well as Co-Race Director for the Scorched Sole 25/50k and 50 miler held in her hometown of Kelowna, B.C., Shirlee continues to search for new challenges that inspire herself and her three daughters to create change that they wish to see in the world.
Tessum Weber, athlete and former ski racer, was born to be an adventurer. In the Arctic from the age of six weeks, he is now regarded as one of the foremost Arctic guides and experienced travelers in the arctic. Now seen as the most eligible candidate for leading polar expeditions with international clients - his experience ranges from technical projects such as leading sea kayaking trips, ski expeditions, hiking/trekking trips to logistical projects such as working with film crews in remote regions.
At the age of 21, Tessum is currently pursuing an undergraduate degree in Bachelor of Commerce with Specialization in Finance and spends his summers helping in the family business, Arctic Watch Wilderness Lodge.
Tessum Weber went to the North Pole in 2005, has taken part on a ski trek across Ellesmere Island (in Canada’s high Arctic)and recently co-guided a trekking expedition through the remote Akshayuk pass on Baffin Island, Canada with i2P.
Growing up with adventuresome parents, Tessum is looking to pursue a similar path taken by that of Richard and Josée. He plans to trek to the North Pole from Canada this coming winter with his father - becoming the youngest person ever to complete the 800 km trek. In spirit of i2P's goals of motivating and giving youth the opportunity to "turn the impossible into possible" Tessum is pleased to be named as an honorary ambassador for i2P.
Matt Hill and Steph Tait
Matt & Steph shared a common dream to inspire a continent by conquering an unfathomable endurance expedition, in a way that had never been done before. in 2006 they co-founder Run for One Planet to "inspire environmental action, one step at a time".
On May 4th 2008 their tour was officially started in front of 15,000 supporters at the Vancouver International Marathon. Taking small daily steps, they ran across Canada & around the perimeter of America, totaling 11,000 miles, doing over 420 marathons as a dynamic running duo. While running a marathon almost every day, they lead a team of over 30 people spread across the continent, spoke to over 30,000 kids, in more than 220 presentations, garnering sponsorship across the continent, gaining a following in the tens of thousands from around the world, giving media interviews almost daily, raising over $120,000 for their Legacy Fund for Kids.
Living & breathing their motto that Small Steps Add Up, on May 8th 2009, Matt & Steph ran their final steps, returning back home to Vancouver across the famous Lions Gate Bridge under Police escort, unlaced their 28th pair of destroyed Asics & gave the tour's final keynote at Western North America's largest green Expo in front of hundreds of supporters. May 8th was not only officially proclaimed "Run for One Planet Day" in the City of Vancouver, bu the Mayor also acknowledged their record consumption of 1.5 million calories... each!
Run for One Planet is now partnered with Vancouver Foundation, Canada's largest endowment organization, to ensure their Legacy lives on in perpetuity. This partnership maximizes the financial impact of the Fund, ensuring the majority of income will be granted to green student initiatives for years to come.
What started as a 'pie in the sky' sounding dream became an epic expedition turned perpetual Legacy, which will create positive change in the world for years to come.
Stories about Lisa's athletic achievements have appeared on the covers of The NY Times, The LA Times, The Washington Post and Winning Magazine. Additionally, she has appeared in Runner’s World, Sports Illustrated for Women, ESPN Magazine, Outside Magazine, Ultrarunning, Trail Runner, Running Times and numerous other national and international publications.
Television coverage on Lisa includes segments on ESPN, Discovery Channel, ABC’s Wide World of Sports, NBC’s Nightly News with Tom Brokaw and Good Morning America and will be featured Summer 2009 on the Today Show. She was a main character in a feature length film on the Badwater Ultramarathon, entitled Running Under the Sun. She has also appeared in two Outdoor Life Network specials on the Marathon des Sables.
Lisa has done product testing for The North Face, an outdoor equipment and clothing company, and has appeared in their national advertising campaign with Dean Karnazes and product catalogs. She is currently a member of the Smith/Pearl Izumi Ultrarunning Team and is also sponsored by Clif Bar, Petzl, Pharmanex, Smartwool, Sharkies, Nathan, NUUN, Smith Optics, Body Glide, Engo, Hammer Nutrition, Kinesys, Salt Stick and Crescent Moon Snowshoes.
David Houghton - Ultracyclist
A veteran of nearly 100 cycling and running races, David has step
ped to the podium in cycling’s 24 Hours of Adrenalin, the Ontario Cup mountain biking series and the Subaru Triathlon Series. He has cycled in over 30 countries, and represented Canada at the World Duathlon Championships.
David’s first ultradistance ride, the 7,000-kilometer Tour du Canada, led to his first book, 66 Days With Satan. His next conquest was the 12,000-kilometer Tour d’Afrique. He captured that arduous journey in his second book, the E-F-I Club, described by Singletrack magazine as "a book that’s both humbling and inspirational". Profits from the book went to the TDA Foundation, which donates bicycles to healthcare workers in Africa.
Next David competed in the Race Across America, completing the 5,000-kilometer journey in 8 days, 4 hours and 46 minutes. He was sponsored by Team RACE – Race Against Cancer Everywhere - and Bank of Montreal’s Fountain of Hope, which supports thousands of Canadian charities at the local level.
David’s book about RAAM, The United States of Delirium, was described by Bicycling Australia as “a fascinating read . . . not only a race report, but a comment on America”. His impassioned writing about cycling and travel has also been featured in Bicycling, The Ride Journal, Cycling Plus UK, Breathe, Singletrack, COG, Get Out There, Triathlon Magazine, Bike and Mountain Life.
David’s newest venture is biciklo, a comprehensive guide to cycling tours around the world. Biciklo’s goal is to promote bicycle touring as a healthy, environmentally sustainable way to travel and explore. The biciklo website currently lists nearly 8,000 road biking, mountain biking, family and self-guided tours offered by over 450 tour operators.
Every year, a portion of biciklo’s profits are donated to a cycling-related charity. This year, biciklo’s charity of choice is 88 Bikes, who provide bicycles to young people in developing countries who have been challenged by war, conflict, poverty or disease. David’s upcoming cycling explorations include Mongolia and China.
Marie has been running marathons since 2000. She has run the Belgium Marathon, Paris Marathon, Nike Women’s Marathon in San Francisco, Calgary Marathon (twice), Victoria Marathon and Vancouver Marathon as well as several half marathons. She has recently stepped into the world of triathlons and is currently training for Ironman Canada in 2010. Her love of running led her to becoming a regular marathon pacer (also called Group Leaders) at the local Running Room in downtown Calgary where she encourages and provides individual support to clinic members who are training for a marathon. She receives great satisfaction in helping people achieve their goal of finishing a marathon.
Marie regularly contributes articles to the company newsletter to motivate and encourage employees to become physically active. The information in the newsletters is always well received and has even sparked interest in fitness for the employees. She clearly understands that happy, healthy employees will result in increased productivity and a sense of company pride and solidarity.
Marie has organized walking/running, inviting employees to participate in a ten week walking and running training program for a local 5K race. She not only encouraged participation, she facilitated a training program through one of the company sponsors, which also happened to be a sponsor of the race. As a result of her encouragement, ten employees (of which seven are First Nation employees) committed and trained for the 5K Mothers Day Run/Walk.
In addition to promoting a healthy lifestyle amongst employees, Marie is promoting fitness and running through the YMCA Aboriginal Active Life Program in Calgary. She was invited by the YMCA Aboriginal Youth Coordinator to give a presentation on running to Calgary’s Aboriginal youth. She not only provided a motivational talk to the group, she offered to develop a seven week training program for Aboriginal Youth to train for and run in a 5K race. Over the course of the training, Marie provided motivational and informational talks on a different running topic each week and led the Aboriginal youth on group training runs. She has also made herself available as a resource for the Aboriginal youth to ask questions during the training or about running in general. Her involvement with the YMCA Aboriginal Active Life Program has led to the formation of the “First Nation Young Athletes Run Club”. The Aboriginal youth, including the YMCA Aboriginal Youth Coordinator are very excited to be part of the running program.
As we all know, Aboriginal people are at a greater risk of developing diabetes and other life threatening diseases. We also know that healthy choices and physical activity can make a difference. Marie is making a difference by promoting health and physical activity amongst our Aboriginal youth in Calgary and to the employees where she works. Recently Marie was the recipient of the First Nation Canadian Gaming Awards 2010 - Community Service Award. Her enthusiasm, positive outlook and encouragement made her an excellent choice for this award and as a role model for Aboriginal youth. She believes in giving back to the Aboriginal community through her passion for running!
Plans for the future, there are always more races to train for and she has plans for the First Nation Young Athletes Run Club to grow and grow.
Nathaniel started a face book fan page for U2's lead singer Bono who recently hurt his back while rehearsing for the upcoming U2360 tour. Initially he made Bono a “get well” card and letter while asking people to do the same. The goal of his page was to reach 1000 fans and so far has reached over 1200! He has been on the radio and featured on internet websites and is excited to be an i2P Inspirational Ambassador. He is also an avid supporter of the Ryan's Well Foundation and plans to speak to his class with hopes of one day building a well in Africa.
Nathaniel was born with a club foot that has seen him go to Edmonton and Calgary numerous times for castings, surgeries, consultations and medical appointments with orthopaedic surgeons and specialists He still visits Calgary once a year for regular checkups and loves swimming, basketball and biking. He is doing the local "Kids of Steel" Triathlon this summer and is very excited.
Cancer, or any other life threatening illness, has a way of opening one’s eyes to the bigger picture in life. This is the lesson Jim Willett learned at the start of 2010, when, at 36, he was diagnosed with colon cancer. Following major surgery and a six month battle through chemotherapy, his values pertaining to healthy living and personal legacy have remained resolute; they have, however, taken on a much greater meaning.
"I no longer see it as my mission to help just a few people; it is now my responsibly to help as many as possible. This experience has shown me my true life’s purpose."
And Jim is no stranger to delivering the message of healthy living and reaching your potential, having been a personal trainer since 1997. Over the years he has trained hundreds of people—from athletes to former couch potato’s to other personal trainers. His lengthy resume also includes; appearances as a fitness expert on multiple Canadian television shows; being the lead instructor in several exercise videos; as well as feature articles in numerous magazines, both as an expert source and writer.
Jim continued to run and train throughout chemotherapy and has now set his sights on the “Gobi March,” a 250km multiday foot race in the Gobi desert of north western China. He hopes his participation in the event—starting June of 2011—will show people that having cancer doesn’t limit you in any way.
"We have no control over some of the things that happen to us in life. It is both fragile and precious. Having said that, we can’t walk around like we’re on thin ice; we can achieve amazing things if we believe in ourselves. Nothing is impossible."
To find out more about Jim, and the charity he is raising money for—Trails Youth Initiatives—check out his blog at: runjimmirun.blogspot.com
Run Across Ethiopia (http://onthegroundglobal.org and facebook) In modern-day Ethiopia's Yirgachefe region, where some of the world's most unique and sought-after coffees originate, little more than half the region's children complete primary school. The adult literacy rate is 36 percent. Life expectancy is 53 years.
On January 8, 2011, Hans Voss, Timothy Young and Chris Treter with a small group of runners will run 400 kilometers across Southern Ethiopia as part of a campaign to generate awareness and funding for education. Together with them will be Seth Bernard and May Erlewine, independent musicians who will have daily concerts along the route with Ethiopian musicians and write an album to benefit education projects. The Run Across Ethiopia aims to raise over a $100,000 for Ethiopian education projects, including the construction of schools in the country.
Tony (a self-proclaimed "rookie") has only been running since 2006 and is the kind of guy you see often in Boulder, Colorado: fit, tan, full of energy and radiating stoke. But it wasn’t always that way. Prior to moving to Boulder, Tony drank too much. He lived in Orlando, Florida. He smoked cigarettes, and he dreamed of a career in law enforcement. It was that dream that proved to be a turning point. After being unable to complete just a 2-mile physical fitness test for the law enforcement academy, it was decided that he needed to make a change.
Mental toughness, says Tony, was the key to his success at transforming himself from a cigarette-smoking boozer who couldn't even run a mile to a guy who paces other people in marathons. And mental toughness is also, according to Tony, the key to not only achieving one's goals as an athlete at any level, but also exceeding them.
Now Tony focuses on helping people achieve fitness goals, whether it's a particular marathon time to just getting the heart pumping. Along with these selfless acts to helping individuals, Tony has recently raised money for the American Lung Association of Colorado in a journey and attempt to cover 200 miles, non-stop, and is always looking for a way to "give back" to others.
Working with impossible2Possible is something that lines up with Tony's beliefs, values, and principles.
A native of the California Bay Area, Joe holds a Masters in Public Health from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and is passionate about reducing health inequalities and inspiring healthy behavior change. Joe and his wife are avid travelers, but keep their hearts in California.
In February 2011, Joe ran more than 500 miles in 17 days from Washington, D.C. to the University of Guelph, in Ontario, Canada to raise awareness for Universities Fighting World Hunger and funds for the United Nations World Food Programme. The project, entitled the Hunger 500, stopped at universities along the route to give speeches and host rallies designed to make hunger issues a focus within universities. More information on the Hunger 500 can be found at www.hunger500.org and Joe can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Charlotte is employed as an Engineering Specialist and has a background in Environmental Research with an Honours and Masters degrees in Science. She is passionate for environmental research and protection and is proud to have worked with government and NGO groups such as Environment Canada, Parks Canada, and The Nature Conservancy of Canada
Charlotte's is primarily involved in running ultramarathons and orienteering, but also competed in multisport adventure racing. Most recently Charlotte set a Speed Record for the Bruce Trail 2010 (13 days 10 hours 51 minutes) and has been a member of Team Canada 24 Hour Team Member since 2006
Charlotte strives to be a positive role model and mentor in general and for youth, especially young girls. She also works with Big Sisters and The Lions Club.
Charlotte sincerely believes "we can accomplish anything that we chose to, the only limitations that we have are the one's that we place on ourselves".
Darren and Sandy Van Soye
Former IT professionals, Darren and Sandy Van Soye are on a 14-month global expedition called Trekking the Planet with the goal of improving students’ knowledge of geography. In total, their journey covers 50 countries on six continents and includes treks in 12 distinct cultural and natural locations in the world. Darren and Sandy were inspired to plan their adventure after they saw first-hand what a positive impact a previous four-month trip around the globe had on their two daughters (now college-aged). Throughout their travels, the couple is sharing 60 free geography education modules they have created, as well as pictures and videos from the road. So far, more than 850 classrooms representing 55,000 students from 21 countries are following their travels via the Internet.