The leaves are crisp, the sun is setting sooner, and pumpkins dot porches around town. Autumn has arrived, and it’s the perfect time for a casual stroll around the park or the Farmer’s Market—or a half-marathon in Moab. At least, that’s what Liz Wepler is doing on November 2nd.
Liz, a SPEA graduate, is running the Moab Trail Half Marathon with a goal of raising $500 for GBA.
Liz heard about GBA during her time as a SPEA undergrad when she took co-founder Dr. Ann Marie Thomson’s class. She was interested in GBA’s approach to community development. “The service-learning (or now servant-leadership) components really spoke to something I was just beginning to value in my own life as well at the time,” says Liz. Ann Marie became a mentor to Liz, even after Liz moved away to Colorado.
In addition to raising $500 through the run, Liz recently became a monthly donor. She will match a portion of her donations for the run. “Last year I fundraised $500 as a part of a team for a Denver-based organization and realized that this is something that I could do for GBA as well.”
Liz has completed two half marathons, but this one is different in that it is a trail marathon, taking place on much less predictable terrain. She aims to just finish the race, but ideally finish it under 2.5 hours. Her training involves running 10 miles once a week with shorter runs interspersed throughout the week.
In her pre-run interview, Liz offered up her insight about GBA. “When you look into the dynamic and tumultuous history of DRC and the different models of community development that are being put into action, GBA is approaching development and addressing local community needs in the right way with both short term effects and long term impact in mind.”
Liz is modeling a sustainable form of community development herself—starting local to find solutions and using her talents and resources to reach extraordinary goals.
If you’d like to help Liz reach her goal, you can donate here—
We will keep you posted with updates. Good luck, Liz!