New York, March 1, 2018 – New York Road Runners (NYRR) today announced that marathon legend Meb Keflezighi, the only athlete ever to win the New York City Marathon, the Boston Marathon, and an Olympic medal, has partnered with the world’s premier running organization and will serve as Ambassador & Special Advisor to its charity running team, NYRR Team for Kids. In his new role Keflezighi will team up with adult runners to support Team for Kids’ efforts to build a happier, healthier future for the next generation of runners and advise NYRR on its ongoing mission to help and inspire people through running.
“Going into the 2017 marathon season, knowing it would be my last as a professional runner, I began looking for the best outlets to continue to promote running as a vehicle to support and encourage children to lead healthy and active lives,” said Keflezighi. “New York Road Runners makes it possible for young people to experience the joys of the sport, as I did at their age. I've been fortunate to have been a Team for Kids Ambassador since 2014 and I’m excited to continue this role by joining this group of inspired adult runners with Team for Kids and by participating in the 2018 TCS New York City Marathon and supporting Team for Kids’ efforts through the year."
As a part of his new role, Keflezighi will participate in, and promote a number of NYRR events and initiatives including the organization’s premier event, the TCS New York City Marathon. Keflezighi, who retired from professional running after his finish at the 2017 TCS New York City Marathon, will return to the marathon in 2018 to run alongside the adults who raise money to run the race with Team for Kids.
Today also marks the opening of the official charity running program for the 2018 TCS New York City Marathon. Runners can register to participate with Team for Kids or one of more than 350 official charity partners who team up with the TCS New York City Marathon to help build awareness of their impactful causes and utilize the event as a critical fundraising platform for their organizations. Runners who have already been accepted into the marathon are also encouraged to raise money for charity—Team for Kids, any official charity partner, or a charity of their choice.
“It’s a very special group of people who choose to run the TCS New York City Marathon on behalf of our official charity partner organizations,” said Christine Burke, vice president of runner products and services at NYRR. “Since the program’s inception in 2006, more than $270 million has been raised, benefiting hundreds of worthy causes throughout New York City and around the world, and we’re thrilled to be kicking off another successful year of fundraising.”
At the 2017 TCS New York City Marathon, nearly 9,300 charity runners raised $35.5 million on behalf of not-for-profit organizations. Last year’s delegation of charity runners was comprised of those running in support of 359 official charity partners, including Team for Kids, and individual runners utilizing CrowdRise, the TCS New York City Marathon’s official fundraising partner platform, to raise funds for a charity of their choosing.
More than $6.1 million was raised by Team for Kids through the 2017 TCS New York City Marathon, the team’s flagship event. The group’s top fundraiser, Drew Swiss, personally raised more than $96,000 and received the Jack and Lewis Rudin Award for top fundraiser for the 10th consecutive year. To participate in the 2018 TCS New York City Marathon with Team for Kids, runners must raise a minimum of $2,620. In return, team members receive guaranteed entry and professional training support, while making every mile count for the participants in NYRR’s youth fitness programs.
“Team for Kids is made up of a devoted group of adult runners who want to add meaning to their miles and inspire the next generation of runners, and we’re excited to have Meb joining our team,” said Michael Rodgers, vice president of youth and community runner engagement at NYRR. “Now in its 17th year, the team has raised more than $57 million for the participants of New York Road Runners’ free youth running and fitness programs across the country. The opportunity for these young runners to participate in our youth programs at no cost would not exist without this team’s fundraising efforts throughout the year.”
In 2017, Team for Kids posted a record-breaking year of fundraising, raising more than $8.6 million in support of NYRR’s national, free youth fitness programs, which provide the young participants with effective and affordable fitness programming. The money, raised at the 2017 TCS New York City Marathon and 11 other races throughout the year, passes the team’s previous record of $7.5 million, set in 2016. More information about Team for Kids is available here.
About the TCS New York City Marathon
The TCS New York City Marathon is the largest marathon in the world and the signature event of New York Road Runners (NYRR), the world’s premier community running organization. The race is held annually on the first Sunday of November and includes over 50,000 runners, from the world’s top professional athletes to runners of all ages and abilities, including over 9,000 charity runners. Participants from approximately 140 countries tour the diverse neighborhoods of New York City’s five boroughs—Staten Island, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Manhattan. Race morning also features the Rising New York Road Runners Youth Invitational at the TCS New York City Marathon, a 1.7-mile race finishing in Central Park at the same finish line being crossed hours later by the marathon field. More than one million spectators and 10,000 volunteers line the city’s streets in support of the runners, while millions more watch the globally televised broadcast. The race is a founding member of the Abbott World Marathon Majors, which features the world’s top marathons—Tokyo, Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago, and New York. Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), a leading global IT services, consulting, and business solutions organization, is the premier partner of NYRR and the title sponsor of the TCS New York City Marathon. The 48th running of the TCS New York City Marathon is set for November 4, 2018. To learn more, visit www.tcsnycmarathon.org.