Last month marked my fourth year of employment with Run Wild Missoula. I was hired in March 2009 as the organization’s first Executive Director. Since then a lot has changed for Run Wild Missoula, but many things remain the same.
Membership was at about 350 then and today we have over 1,500 dues-paying members. Even though Run Wild Missoula’s membership is 2.5% of Missoula’s population, it still feels like a close-knit running club. I love hearing stories about how many of you have found your community through Run Wild Missoula.
When I started in 2009, I knew a handful of you, but now I feel like I have gained a community of runners as well. When I’m out on the trails of Missoula it’s rare to not see a familiar face or someone wearing a Run Wild Missoula, Missoula Marathon or other race t-shirt. It brings a smile to my face that we’re all connected in by that common thread: through participation in the same race, registration of the same training class and a passion that we share to stay active through running or walking.
Since 2009, Run Wild Missoula has also added three new annual races. Each year all of our events grow by 15 – 20% or more. We also have training classes to get you to the finish line of the Missoula Marathon, to help you explore the trails of Missoula and to get you off the coach to run your first 5K. In addition, we offer social opportunities for members, group runs, track workouts, seminars, a charitable giving program, advocacy and much more.
I know there are a lot more than 1,500 runners and walkers in Missoula and many more potential runners and walkers out there. My goal is to get all of them to become members of Run Wild Missoula and to continue to foster the growth of our organization by increased participation in races, advocating for runners and walkers and continuing to develop a vision for the future.
I’m excited about what’s in store for the next four years. If you have suggestions for Run Wild Missoula, please send them my way by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.