Episode 23

Lets Talk: 

Boston Marathon, Runners Doing Good, & Rebuild NYRR

by | Sep 16, 2020 | Episodes | 0 comments



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In this episode of The Run Wave Podcast, Kim talks Boston Marathon virtual race finishers, runners doing good, is there a lack of Inclusion and Diversity in the NY running community, and does NYRR need rebuilding?

Show Mentions:
Mid Strike Magazine http://midstrikemagazine.com

Save $10 on Route 66 Marathon with link: http://haku.ly/506362f3
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Philip King’s Episode: http://therunwave.com/episode13
DM Philip on IG to donate shoes http://instagram.com/pkingduc76
White River Marathon For Kenya https://whiterivermarathon.com/

Rebuild NYRR: http://instagram.com/rebuildnyrr
Letter to NYRR Board: https://rebuildnyrr.org/2020/08/25/letter-to-board/

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Episode Transcription

[00:00:00] Hey, it’s Kim just popping in for a quick second to ask you for a small favor. If you are a fan of The Run Wave Podcast, I could really use your support first. Please take a few seconds to subscribe to this podcast and rate this podcast. Five stars. Take a look at your phone right now and tap, subscribe.

[00:00:19] And if you’re listening on Apple podcasts, squirrel all the way down to the bottom of your screen. Okay. Tap ratings and reviews and tap five stars. Yeah, it’s super simple. And will literally take you a few seconds and if you really want to support the show, please write a review. I appreciate all of you who have left ratings and reviews so far.

[00:00:41] It keeps this little engine that could going. Lastly, if you know anyone that would enjoy The Run Wave Podcast, please share the show with them. It helps with growing the show, growing the audience, and it also keeps me motivated to keep bringing you the content topics [00:01:00] that we all enjoy and love. Now let’s get started with the show.

[00:01:05] 26.2 finishes. Runner’s doing good. Is there a lack of diversity in the New York running community? And does N Y R R need rebuilding?

[00:01:27] Hey everybody. Welcome back to another episode of The Run Wave Podcast. I am your host Kim. And if this is your first time listening, I want to thank you for joining me today. And if you are a return listener, thank you so much for coming back and showing your support for me and for The Run Wave Podcast. So you may have noticed in your podcast app, The Run Wave of has a little bit of a new look and I figured I’d just do a little switch up where about, I think [00:02:00] this is episode 22.

[00:02:01] Don’t hold me to that. But yeah, you know, I’ve been doing this for a few months now through the pandemic and I thought it was time for a new look. So the podcast cover art for tThe Run Wave Podcast has gotten a little facelift. And I, I must say, I think it’s kind of cute and thank my friend, Amanda, for sure.

[00:02:21] Shooting me down in Brooklyn and Dumbo. She got some great shots and that shot was one of them. If you are in New York city and in need of a good photographer, Amanda is great. Her Instagram, and I’m going to put it up on the screen. Here is A F A R I A G S H O T I T T. So @afariahshotit. She’s based in Brooklyn and she is great.

[00:02:44] And she’s also a runner. So definitely hit her up. If you’re looking for photography in the New York city area,

[00:02:53] This portion of the show is sponsored by Mid Strike Magazine. The first diverse digital runner’s [00:03:00] magazine. Check out the September issue featuring Test, founder, and race director of running nerds and founding partner of The Race. Visit midstrikemagazine.com to read the latest issue and be sure to subscribe to the mag.

[00:03:14] So you’ll be updated first when a new issue drops.

[00:03:24] This past weekend was Boston marathon virtual run weekend. So I just want to give a kudos to all of those that completed 26.2 miles virtually. I know that is no easy task. We’re used to those crowds out there cheering us on and. Pushing us through those long and grueling miles. And a lot of you guys did it on your own, and I’m super proud because I know it is something that I could never conquer.

[00:03:54] So kudos to you. I’ve been seeing people all over the country here. They’re [00:04:00] virtual races and. You know, I know this year has been tough and a lot of our show racing is going on, but I’m glad that a lot of you have stayed motivated and have, I’ve been able to push through during this trying time and accomplish your goals of running that Boston marathon.

[00:04:17] I’m virtual. So congrats to all of you. Speaking of virtual races, I’m actually an ambassador for the route 66 marathon. I’m now the ambassador ships were announced before COVID hit. So I was expecting to actually run this race in person in November, in Oklahoma. But of course that didn’t happen and the race happened.

[00:04:41] Turn virtual. So full disclosure being an ambassador. I do get a free race entry and other VIP program from the race. Just wanted to give you full disclosure. Sure. But if you are interested in doing virtual races, definitely check this one out. It is in November and you can. I [00:05:00] use my code 20, 20 straight Kim.

[00:05:03] S T R a K I M. And you’ll get $10 off of your registration with the registration. You get this fly hoodie, you get a medal and you get a coin as well, a special coin for the 14 and a half race. They’re calling it 14 and a half because you know, COBIT hit. So they had to do a little spin on it, but. Yeah, the racist.

[00:05:24] Cool. I was hoping to run it in November, but they have rolled over our ambassadorships to 2021. So I’ll be an ambassador for our next year as well. And hopefully I will be on the streets running that race next November, 2021. And maybe. Some of you can join me as well. Again, my ambassador code is 2020 street, Kim S T R a K I M.

[00:05:47] And you’re receive $10 off of your race registration, and I’ll also leave a custom registration link down below that you can just click and the discount code will already be added, or you can just go to their website, route [00:06:00] 66 marathon and enter that code at checkout to save the $10. Well, I am introduced.

[00:06:05] A new segment to the show called farmers doing good. So if you are doing something great in the run community and you would like me to chat about it on the show, send me an email. hello@therunwave.com and we can chat about it and see if I can give you a little mention on the show. So this week’s episode and our runners doing good section, right.

[00:06:28] I am featuring Philip King. And you may remember Philip King. He was a guest on this show previously. He was also a second. He’s my only two time guests on this show. And, um, he taught us about doing his first half marathon during COVID. He gave us a play by play of that experience. I’ll leave a link to that episode down below so you can listen to it.

[00:06:52] Philip is doing the white river marathon for Kenya, [00:07:00] Arkansas, and this marathon. Has a really great cause attached to it. I’m just going to read off some of their cause too. Yeah. So you can learn a little bit about the Oregon. Yeah. Asian and what they are doing for Kenya. The white river marathon for Kenya has raised tens of thousands of dollars for the village of  Kenya providing potable water about.

[00:07:22] Water well, providing, providing portable water, Wells clothing, and a host of other necessities working in conduction with world vision. The part of this process that is special is that Philip is collecting lightly worn shoes, running shoes to donate to this organization, which will be sent back to Kenya.

[00:07:44] So w R M teams with equal sneakers to make the best use of used and worn out running shoes from gnarly dog chewed yard work, pink splattered, snarly shoes to gently use. They didn’t match my new garment [00:08:00] ban. That’s cute with micro trends on the outside. We’ll take them. So Philip is collecting the shoes and you can send him a Z I’m on Instagram.

[00:08:11] I’ll put his Instagram up here and he will send you his information that you can send your lightly use or gently use running sneakers to him so that he can collect them. And he actually ships them off to Kenya. So. Definitely check this out. I’ll be sending up some of my shoes, those new balance sneakers that I bought years ago for a London marathon and she, that I didn’t get and they’re practically new.

[00:08:40] So I’m going to send those off to Philip because they’re just in my closet collecting dust. And I know someone in Kenya can make. Great use of those sneakers and maybe win a marathon and then one day. So that would be dope, but definitely, um, help this cause our help off friend Philip out, he’s a fellow runner and [00:09:00] he is a runner.

[00:09:01] Doing good. Okay. So a new Instagram account popped up a couple of weeks ago and it is called rebuild. And why are, are now a few of you exist? Send me their profile because I did do two episodes on Atlanta track club and what was going on. They are Peachtree road race, and I did compare them to New York road runners in that article now.

[00:09:32] A few of you also sent me the link and said, did you know that the CEO, N Y R makes 500 K a year? The relevancy of that is during my episode, I did read off the salaries of the executives of the Atlanta track club. Not yeah. To spotlight how much they were making. Right. But because they mentioned that one of the reasons yeah.

[00:09:59] Why they weren’t [00:10:00] returning the registration fees for the Peachtree road race was because they were a nonprofit and the registration fees from the Peachtree road race were an integral part of the mission of ATC. So that’s the only reason why I brought up the salaries of the Atlanta track club executives.

[00:10:19] Now, New York road runners. The top executives, they do make a lot of money. And the top guy does make $500,000, which, I mean, it’s a lot of money, but in New York road, runners and Atlanta track club are two different organizations. They’re both nonprofit. One is in New York. One is in Atlanta, totally different costs of living.

[00:10:41] So, you know, I wasn’t justifying or playing down what the executives made an Atlanta track club. I just. Wanted to know if they were paying their executives this amount and they were not refunding money. I needed to know what they were doing with that money and where it was going. New York road runners.

[00:10:59] I’m not sticking up [00:11:00] for New York road runners, but I’m just stating a fact New York road runners did offer the option of a refund for all of their races, or you can get credit for it next year. So you just weren’t out of the dust or stuck with doing a virtual race. You did have options with New York road runners.

[00:11:17] That was a little bit of a detour, but I had to get that salary situation out of the way first. Okay. Back to rebuild. And why are R I first want to read you off their description of this account? And I’m just gonna put it end up on the screen here. So if you’re watching this on YouTube, you can read it along with me.

[00:11:39] Their description says we are current and past employees of N Y R R New York road runners. Join us to hashtag rebuild and why are, are, and share your stories. And they have a link in the bio. I’ll put that link down below as well. Their first post to the page was August [00:12:00] 31st. And that post reads silencing employees.

[00:12:04] Now I want to preface this by saying that this is all alleged. Everything coming off, this page is anonymous. So this is a legit, and I’m just going to read what is public knowledge and publicly posted on Instagram. This post is called silencing employees, all staff members who were laid off and eligible for a severance package were asked to sign a nondisclosure agreement, which stated that they would not receive their severance pay.

[00:12:33] If they spoke up about the company in a negative light. And the second slide on that poll says this effectively silence around 34 people from speaking about their experiences at N Y R R also on the study first and why our employees have little trust that is highlighted little trust in the board of directors.

[00:12:58] Many employees want to talk to the [00:13:00] board, but lack confidence and trust as they do not believe. The board will act with integrity when called upon to confidentiality support their employees. Second slide. The relationship between the chairman of the board, Michael, uh, how do you spell it? S Michael, how do you pronounce his name?

[00:13:20] I know I’m butchering this. Uh, caprese Cooper. I’m going to say Michael C is too close for comfort for many in why are our employees? People feel retribution because of Michael’s relationship with the chairman also on August 31st. Workplace violence against women at N Y R R a headquarters. Several employees witnessed a white male, senior manager get angry and scream in the face of a female Latin ex employee.

[00:13:54] He cornered her it’s her, her desk and forcibly grabbed her arm. Another [00:14:00] manager had to grab both of his arms and yank him away from her. The BP of HR told several of the witnesses who reported the incident that HR must first investigate whether this male employee had been involved in similar incidents.

[00:14:17] In the past, or if this was an isolated incident, he was not fired. The woman was still required to be in his reporting line. He could tell you to have women report directly to him. Also on August 1st, 20, 20 New York road runners were laid off and for a lot of 51%. Of staff in why are, are intentionally under reported that number to the public, including an article in runner’s world that quoted the total reduction as 11% layoff and 28% for low.

[00:14:50] Staff were inaccurately informed or not informed at all about the total layoffs and furloughs HR intentionally did not shoot [00:15:00] the organizational chart after their reduction staff. We’ll have to figure out who to connect with on El Sandy projects. Not knowing if a team member had been laid off or. More furloughed, potentially.

[00:15:12] No lack of transparency about staff reduction was executed by PR. So Michael salary would not look so obscene in the same sentence as staff reduction in why are played on the sympathy of runners and donors while they continue to pay leadership, large salaries. So this page really goes on and on and on.

[00:15:34] I mean, there seems to be details here that really only current or former employees would know. That’s why I kind of understand why the page is anonymous, but there is one other thing that I wanted to do to read to you about, um, the demands that these current and former employees requested of New York road runners.

[00:15:58] So they wrote a letter [00:16:00] to the board of NYU and it is quite limping. So I’m going to leave the link to the letter in the show notes. So it’ll be on my website. It’ll be down below. Well, so it starts the letter letter to the board of directors of New York road runners. And I’m just going to highlight certain parts of this letter, which I find very interesting.

[00:16:19] It starts off with the current and former employees are writing anonymously out of okay. Fear of retaliation to express. Our profound concern with the trajectory. New York road waters is heading under the current leadership of Michael president and CEO. I’m not going to butcher his last name again. So some of the highlights of this letter, financial mismanagement and.

[00:16:45] SPECT it malfeasance racism, another form of the discrimination, performative diversity, marginalizing BIP, LLC, staff and hindrance of DEI youth community program is management. And [00:17:00] there’s so much more, but they, or demanding immediate removal of Michael, the president and CEO and board member. As he foresters toxic, discriminatory, and systematically racist work culture at New York road runners conduct an independent pay equity audit, communicate results, and take corrective action to remediate disparities.

[00:17:28] Restructure human resources and accompanying policies and procedures to force an anti racist and anti discriminatory workplace communicate results from the audit. Commit to DEI integration. A new external president and CEO hired by a diverse search committee. This letter is extremely detailed and it does outline exactly what the current and former employees want.

[00:17:57] Again, I will leave a link below because it is [00:18:00] quite long. I’ll screenshot some of it and put it up there for you, but you’ll have to go and read it for yourself. Hopefully it is still there by the time you go and read the notice. So, yeah, there is just a lot to unpack here. I mean, none of this is good quite honestly.

[00:18:18] And it’s us, I mean, This situation is really not that far fetch and is entirely really believable because we know what goes salon and corporate America, even at a nonprofit organization, but New York road runners is a huge nonprofit organization in therapy, bringing in millions of dollars a year. They paid the NYP D millions of dollars a year for security at their racist.

[00:18:42] So this is no, um, mom and pop organization. New York road runners is massive. And if these are the things that are going on within their organization, do we still want to support. For them. Do we still want to pay any membership fees for an organization that doesn’t bother you? They’re employees of [00:19:00] color?

[00:19:00] Do we want to support an organization that allegedly lets abuse go on in the workplace unchecked is that who we want to support? So, you know, I hope that these current and former employees can come to some kind of resolution. With New York, Roman burners, if these allegations are true, because I know for myself and I’ve been racing York road runners, since I started running, you know, it’s a part of.

[00:19:28] A big part of my running history. I run the New York city marathon four times. You know, I love the city of New York, but I will not continue to support an organization that doesn’t support me. And by me, I mean, black people, black women, people of color. So, you know, I stand with these current and former employees, you know, I, I don’t know why anyone would put this type of thing out there if it wasn’t true.

[00:19:55] And. You know, I just want New York Roadrunners to speak [00:20:00] up Bali because they, they have had so many missteps during, you know, this current climate that we’re in. And, you know, I saw a few, I want to, I don’t know if they’re still up, if they’re still up, I’ll find them and put up on the screen, but they had a few questionable posts and that had the, you know, all lives matter feeling to it.

[00:20:22] And when they received the backup. Glass, they reverse those poles and they moved on the black lives matter bandwagon. So, you know, I’m just, I’m just sick of these organizations in their bullshit, quite honestly. And, and, you know, at this point, I’m just like, I’m not in the, in the mood to just give my money to companies that just are not doing right by people.

[00:20:48] And, you know, it’s sucks. And it sucks for us as runners. It sucks for these employees because this is their livelihood. It just it’s a sucky yet situation. [00:21:00] And I wish that we didn’t have to go through this, but the only way that we as a running community can help these employees current and former out is to stand by them and stop supporting this organization.

[00:21:16] If they keep doing what they’re doing and they’re not showing. Some level of improvement and steps to remedy the situation. So. Rebuild. And why are I stand by you? If someone wants to come on the runway podcast and, you know, tell your side of the story, I’m more than happy to have you one. There’s someone from New York road runners that wants to come on the podcast.

[00:21:39] I’m happy to have you on as well. Hit me and my damn send an email to him. hello@therunway.com N. We will chat. I also want to give a mention to another new Instagram page that popped up. It is called the New York city running idea. And their description is New York city running inclusion, [00:22:00] diversity equity and access committee, because there are too many barriers to entry for too many runners.

[00:22:07] So I want you to check out that Instagram page as well. Okay. They have a position on bed, through tunes.org and the petition is race and inclusion and the New York city running community and why our, our petition. So go and check that out as well. And yeah, you know, New York has been like, it’s been crazy these last few months.

[00:22:31] I’m telling you, I just. Went out to eat this past weekend and New York is kind of starting to feel like it’s getting. Back to normal or whatever our new normal is again. And, you know, New York row burners is returning to, to road racing. They’re having a N Y R R returned to racing pilot for M, which is going to be September 27th in central park.

[00:22:58] So it feels like [00:23:00] we are slowly but surely. Getting back to racing. You know, I’ve seen races pop up here and there I’ve seen one of my friends at a race in one of the Dakotas. I can’t remember if it was North or South, but she did that at the end of last month. I see people are bracing they’re socially distance races, races are smaller.

[00:23:22] So race seeing is starting to happen again. So if you’re feeling like slowly. Stepping back into racing. You can definitely do that now because smaller races, those are happening. And I’m kind of excited to see where things are going, because I know we all have like cabin fever now, so it will be just great to kind of get back on the road again and just.

[00:23:45] See, I haven’t seen any of my re I mean, I’ve seen my race friends that I’m close with, you know, I’ve seen them, but my groups overrule, I haven’t seen any of my running group since March. It is now September. It’s been [00:24:00] six long months. So yeah, it would be nice to just. Get together and say, Hey with people, you know, socially distant.

[00:24:07] So, um, I’m happy things are kind of getting back and I’m like excited to see where things are going. I want to thank you for tuning into this episode of the runway podcast. It was nice to just chat with you guys again, with my friends, with my people. You know, when I do interviews back to back to back as I like to just sit there and just talk to you.

[00:24:30] Okay. One-on-one I feel like it’s, one-on-one, it’s just me and my room talking, but I feel like I’m talking to you guys again and it feels good. So thank you again for tuning into the show for supporting the show. I really appreciate all of you and I am going to continue, you know, speaking, being the voice of runners, speaking our truth, you know, I’m not here to.

[00:24:57] Placate, any [00:25:00] organizations not to sugarcoat anything, I’m here to keep it real. And to bring you my honest thoughts and opinion. And if you have honest lessen opinion that you want to bring to the show, I’m happy to have any runner on this shelter. Share your opinion on matters of the run community. So thanks again for tuning into The Run Wave Podcast, and I will catch you on the next one.

[00:25:24] Later. Thank you so much for tuning into the show. Be sure to subscribe to the runway on your favorite podcast app and leave us a review of the show on Apple podcasts. It would have really helped me out. If you are a runner that has a story to tell, and you would like to be on the show. You can email hello@therunways.com or send us a DM on Instagram to @therunwave.

[00:25:51] See you next time. [00:26:00] .

The Run Wave Podcast will feature candid chats, with runners about real topics that affect the run community.

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