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Girls Gotta Run Foundation Incorporated
May 28, 2010

As one who is passionate about running as well as programs that empower girls and women in developing countries, I fell in love with Girls Gotta Run from the moment I heard Pat Ortman speak about the organization. Pat is a retired women’s studies professor who now spends her days working tirelessly to give some of the most vulnerable, yet determined girls in Ethiopia the chance to better their own lives, and in turn, the lives of their entire families and communities. Pat is a dynamo leader who is constantly working to engage energetic and dedicated individuals and organizations in this worthy cause. By focusing on strategic growth and commitment to the core mission, she keeps volunteers motivated and purposeful in their efforts on behalf of the girls. One of my primary roles as a Board member has been to link Girls Gotta Run with the extensive running community in the Washington, DC region. I have had the pleasure of speaking to local running groups, especially teams of girls participating in the Girls on the Run program for middle school girls. I was deeply touched when 40 middle school-aged girls from the Washington International School who were participating in Girls on the Run ran a lap-a-thon to raise thousands of dollars - enough to pay for around 100 pairs of shoes - for girls in Ethiopia who are running, literally, out of poverty and into opportunity. Imagine a girl in Ethiopia who loves running and aspires to become a professional runner. If she is given a chance to pursue her dream, she will become healthy and self-confident. As a confident girl, she will be more likely to delay early marriage and childbirth. She will advocate for her education and well-being, and her parents and community will respect her. Whether she becomes a professional athlete or not, she will be able to get job, help support a family, become a leader in her community, and live longer. Girls Gotta Run has a mission of making this story a reality for over 40 girls in Ethiopia. With a broader base of support, the impact of our work can be greatly magnified and reach the thousands of other girl runners who currently lack any support. Because of its innovative model, successful outcomes, and strong leadership, Girls Gotta Run greatly deserves recognition and support. I am honored to be associated with Pat and the organization’s other volunteers and friends.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

learning about the stories of positive change in the lives of girls served by Girls Gotta Run and observing among others that to know Girls Gotta Run is to love the organization.

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How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

MY ROLE:
Board Member & I helped raise awareness about Girls Gotta Run in the local running community.