Meet the Philadelphia 3-Day Coaches!

Every Susan G. Komen 3-Day® event has a core team of three coaches, each of whom plays a different role in helping our walkers and crew members prepare for the Komen 3-Day. For months, these dedicated staffers have been having personal conversations with walkers to help them with their training and fundraising, have hosted dozens of local events to bring participants together and build a community of encouragement, and have organized and inspired the amazing team of crew captains and crew members.

Let’s meet the coaches for the Philadelphia 3-Day®!

Joanne Harrington – Philadelphia Local Events Coachsusan g. komen 3-day breast cancer walk blog philadelphia coach joanne

Describe your job in 10 words or fewer. – “Coordinate everything to welcome our walkers to the 3-Day.”

We’re a couple weeks from the Philadelphia event. What’s a typical day like for you these days? – “I’m insanely busy here! I’m firming up private cheering stations and mobile cheering squads, gathering bakeries for baked good donations, answering questions about ceremony flag bearers and generally just putting on the finishing touches.”

What are 3 things that we didn’t know about you? – “1) I have two lovely granddaughters: Abby, age 9 and Caroline, age 5. Unfortunately, they live in Maryland so I don’t get to see them as much as I would like; 2) I am a Philadelphia Eagles season ticketholder. E-A-G-L-E-S, EAGLES! LOVE my birds! 3) I have been on 16 cruises.”

 

Jen Haber – Philadelphia Participant Coachsusan g. komen 3-day breast cancer walk blog philadelphia coach jen

Describe your job in 10 words or fewer. – “Answering all things 3-Day-related on a daily basis.”

We’re a couple weeks from the Philadelphia event. What’s a typical day like for you these days? – “Busy! My days are filled with interactions with participants. I’ve gotten to know many Philadelphia walkers through the emails and calls I am receiving. It’s that time of the event season when I am helping with matching gift questions, assisting with online check-in and providing last-minute event details. Everyone has a story that connects us to this cause and I love hearing them. The conversations I have each day are very important to me because they remind me why we are all working so hard to make an impact in the fight against breast cancer.”

What are 3 things that we didn’t know about you? – “1) I live in Southern California and have two dogs who love coming to visit the San Diego 3-Day every year; 2) I was a Peace Corps volunteer in Poland, where I organized my first breast cancer awareness walk and where my passion for this cause began; 3) I was a vegetarian for almost 20 years until very recently. My carnivore husband couldn’t be happier!”

 

Melanie Toner – Philadelphia Crew & Volunteer Coordinatorsusan g. komen 3-day breast cancer walk blog philadelphia coach melanie

Describe your job in 10 words or fewer. – “Supporting our amazing captains and crew members to rock on event.”

We’re a couple weeks from the Philadelphia event. What’s a typical day like for you these days? – “I spend most of my day working on communicating final details to crew captains and supporting the crew. My goal is to ensure the crew feels confident and prepared on event. The days are long but it’s all worth it. I’m looking forward to seeing the hard work pay off!”

What are 3 things that we didn’t know about you? – “1) I’m a lefty; 2) An ‘intimate’ family event in my family involves 35-40 people; 3) You will likely find me singing to myself on event – something I do when I have a lot to accomplish and need to focus.”

 

Going to be at the Philadelphia 3-Day? Come meet coach Joanne at a special meet-and-greet on Friday and Saturday in camp, 6-7 p.m., in the 3-Day Lounge.

Introducing the 3-Day Series Walkers – Part 4

Anyone who steps up to the challenge of participating in the Susan G. Komen 3-Day® is making an incredible commitment. The months spent on fundraising strategy and execution, training plans and schedules, prepping, packing and traveling almost make it feel like the Komen 3-Day is your second job (good thing it’s a job you love!).

That’s why it’s especially remarkable when we meet a walker who makes the extraordinary decision to walk in every 3-Day® event in one year. In the past, there have been one or two walkers each year who dedicate themselves to walking the “full series,” but in 2014, we are honored to have eight amazing people taking on the full series and walking in all seven 3-Day events.

We’ve already introduced you to Nicole H. and Melissa, Jim and William., and Stephanie and Karen Kay. Today, meet the final two series walkers, sisters Ashley and Nicole.

Ashley H.

susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog full series walkers all seven events ashley hutto

  • What’s your name and where are you from? – Ashley Hutto. I’m originally from the Canton, Ohio area, but now live in Phoenix, AZ.
  • What is your 3-Day history (How many events have you walked/crewed?) – I started in 2009 and have walked 5 consecutive years (1 in Arizona, 3 in San Diego and 1 in San Francisco).
  • How/why did you first get involved with the 3-Day? – My mom passed away in 2002 and my sister, Nicole [Lieberman, also a 2014 series walker], got involved in the 3-Day the following year while I was still in my undergrad. At first, I wasn’t interested, but after I moved to Phoenix in 2009, I finally agreed to try it and the rest is history!
  • Are you part of any teams in 2014? – I’m co-captain of Team Pedi-Cure with my sister.
  • What made you decide to do all 7 events this year? – Team Pedi-Cure aims high! In addition to completing all the 3-Day events in a single year, we will also exceed $100,000 in total fundraising dollars!
  • What are your go-to fundraising strategies? – We’ve tried a lot of different things, but we’ve found our niche in selling products on Amazon.
  • What are you looking forward to most with your walks this year? – I’m looking forward to new routes and meeting some new friends!
  • Is there anything you are nervous about? – It’s difficult to train in the summer in Phoenix because of the heat… so needless to say we haven’t done much of it. I guess the Michigan 3-Day will be our training!
  • What are 3 words that you would use to describe the 3-Day? – Inspiring, energizing, healing

 

Nicole L.

susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog full series walkers all seven events nicole lieberman

  • What’s your name and where are you from? – Nicole Lieberman. I’m originally from northeast Ohio, but have lived in Phoenix, Arizona for 12 years.
  • What is your 3-Day history? (How many events have you walked/crewed) – I have walked one event per year since 2003 (10 events). Events include Arizona, Cleveland, Tampa, San Diego and San Francisco.
  • How/why did you first get involved with the 3-Day? – I lost my mother to cancer in November 2002. In February 2003, I heard a radio commercial for the 3-Day and knew I needed to be a part of this event. I convinced my husband, Adam, to walk with me in Arizona’s inaugural walk, and have been hooked ever since!
  • Are you part of any teams in 2014? – I have been the Captain of Team Pedi-Cure since 2004. I have been lucky enough to walk alongside my sister Ashley [Hutto, also a full series walker in 2014] since 2009 and our Dad walked with us in San Diego in 2010.
  • What made you decide to do all 7 events this year? – The stars are in alignment! After several years of hard work, I have a decent amount of funds saved and my husband got a job with a company that has a very generous matching gifts program.
  • What are your go-to fundraising strategies? – I have amazing family and friends who have generously supported me year after year. To supplement our fundraising, my sister Ashley and I started a side business in 2011 selling products on Amazon.
  • What are you looking forward to most with your walks this year? – I am looking forward to seeing the unique qualities of the 3-Day in each city.
  • Is there anything you are nervous about? – Humidity! One of the advantages of living in the desert for the past 12 years has been the dry heat. This is one element I haven’t trained for.
  • What are 3 words that you would use to describe the 3-Day? – Family, healing, addictive

 

No matter which 3-Day event you are participating in this year, keep an eye out for our eight series walkers, and then introduce yourself to them!

Introducing the 3-Day Series Walkers – Part 3

Anyone who steps up to the challenge of participating in the Susan G. Komen 3-Day® is making an incredible commitment. The months spent on fundraising strategy and execution, training plans and schedules, prepping, packing and traveling almost make it feel like the Komen 3-Day is your second job (good thing it’s a job you love!).

That’s why it’s especially remarkable when we meet a walker who makes the extraordinary decision to walk in every 3-Day® event in one year. In the past, there have been one or two walkers each year who dedicate themselves to walking the “full series,” but in 2014, we are honored to have eight amazing people taking on the full series and walking in all seven 3-Day events.

We’ve already introduced you to Nicole H. and Melissa, and Jim and William. Today, we present Stephanie and Karen Kay, and tomorrow we’ll acquaint you with the last (but not least!) two.

Stephanie K.

susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog full series walkers all seven events stephanie kohatsu

San Diego Padres mascot the Swinging Friar welcome a smiling Stephanie across the finish line

  • What’s your name and where are you from? – My name is: Stephanie Kohatsu (stephiek) and I live in Escondido CA (just outside of San Diego).
  • What is your 3-Day history (how many events have you walked/crewed)? – To date, I have walked 16 events (11 in San Diego) and in SF, DC, Seattle, Philly and Boston and crewed 9 events.
  • How/why did you first get involved with the 3-Day? – I had always wanted to do the 3-Day as friends were being diagnosed (and my sister-in-law was diagnosed in 1998), but got the courage to take the first step in 2003 and have been forever changed by this event and the people who I have met throughout this journey.
  • Are you part of any teams in 2014? – Not really….I just walk, talk and meet people along the way!
  • What made you decide to do all 7 events this year? ­­­– Always wanted to do the ‘cycle’ as I met both Jim (Hillman) and Glen DeKeyser who have both done all 14 in one year, and with the elimination of 7 in 2014, this became manageable as I am using my vacation time to do all of the walks.
  • What are your go-to fundraising strategies? – ASK! Also have been selling my caramels that have become pretty famous on the 3-Day circuit!
  • What are you looking forward to the most with your walks this year? – To re-unite with my fellow walkers, crew and staff.
  • Is there anything that you’re nervous about? – Missing the plane to the event cities!
  • What 3 words would you use to describe the 3-Day? – Best journey EVER!

 

Karen Kay R.

susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog full series walkers all seven events karen kay rush

Karen Kay, still perky and pink after 60 miles

  • What’s your name and where are you from? – Karen Kay Rush. Born in South Carolina, Air Force brat, spent all my adult life in Phoenix, Arizona.
  • What is your 3-Day history (how many events have you walked/crewed)? – 2014 Michigan will be my 32nd walk. I have not crewed yet but maybe one day!
  • How/why did you first get involved with the 3-Day? – When the 3-Day first came to Arizona in 2004, two of my friends and I decided to join in the experience. I have been hooked ever since!
  • Are you part of any teams in 2014? – My “team” consists of me and my Arizona walking buddy Samantha DeZonia, but even when I walk alone I call myself Lump Busters, which is a name my daughter came up with in 2004 (a take-off of Ghost Busters).
  • What made you decide to do all 7 events this year? – I had planned on working my way up to walking the entire 3-Day Series, so back in 2008 I added a city each year and I have been adding ever since. I walked 7 last year too!
  • What are your go-to fundraising strategies? – I primarily rely on my golf tournament (x 6 years now) for most of Sam’s and my fundraising. In addition, I volunteer my time for all of our state’s hockey and football games, as well as some spring training games and concerts. Once a year, a local race track donates $1 for every ticket sold (and they have been doing that for 8 years now).
  • What are you looking forward to the most with your walks this year? – Meeting new people and hearing their stories and enjoying the sights!
  • Is there anything that you’re nervous about? – No.
  • What 3 words would you use to describe the 3-Day? – Inspirational, fun, motivational

Tomorrow, we’ll share introductions to the final two full series walkers! Don’t miss it!