Girls on the Run of Snohomish County wins national award for efforts to support girls of color

From L-R: Elizabeth Kunz, chief executive officer, Girls on the Run International; Megan Wolfe, executive director of Girls on the Run Snohomish County; Audrey Johnson, communications director; Leah Bernstein, program director; Kathleen Quirk, board chair.

Girls on the Run International, a nonprofit that empowers young girls, awarded Girls on the Run Snohomish County a Pacesetter Award for its work in inclusion, diversity, equity and access to support girls of color. Girls on the Run International is the parent organization of 170 individual councils located in all 50 states and Canada. The Pacesetter Awards highlight the enterprising and innovative initiatives councils have developed to help serve their communities and power the mission and vision of Girls on the Run.

Since the council was founded in 2015, Girls on the Run Snohomish County has recognized the importance of serving and reflecting its diverse population. In 2019 and under the leadership of long-time board member Chelsea Berman, the council developed an impactful strategic plan to ground its work in equity and inclusion. In 2020, the council took an additional key step and made a public statement grounded in its core values as an anti-racist organization in support of immigration rights.

The organization continues to demonstrate this value and commitment. The board and staff  participate in and host community trainings and discussions on identity and racism. The council also provides training and development opportunities for its staff and coaches. Girls on the Run Snohomish County’s board is progressively more diverse in race, ethnicity, sexual orientation and lived experiences, allowing the council to reduce barriers to serving all girls well.

“Our work in inclusion, diversity, equity and access is truly at the heart of what we do,” said Megan Wolf, executive director of Girls on the Run Snohomish County. “We not only want to empower girls in our region, but we also want to share our beliefs and let our community know how we provide a safe place of belonging for all girls.”

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