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Our co-founder and Board President, Dr. Ginny Ryan Buresh, is being honored this week as one of the Corridor Business Journal's 2014 Women of Influence!
Ginny helped start Girls on the Run of Johnson County (now Girls on the Run of Eastern Iowa) with 15 girls from two schools. She has served as Board President through GOTREI's recent growth, reaching an anticipated 900 girls from more than 30 schools in 4 counties in 2014. In addition to her invaluable GOTREI service, she is an accomplished physician (an OB-GYN with specialty training in reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, director of the Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology clinic at the University of Iowa, and an affiliate faculty member in the Program for Bioethics and Humanities at the Carver College of Medicine) and has traveled to Haiti a number of times as part of a medical team with Community Health Initiative, a non-profit her husband co-founded. PLUS she has four young children. Talk about a shining star!
"A group of six of us got together in 2006 to do the work needed to bring the first Girls on the Run council to Iowa. We were a group of women runners who all identified the importance that sport had played in our own adolescence and adult lives. About a year, $5,000 in donations, and a lengthy needs assessment later, we started our first 2 Johnson County programs with 15 total participants. We all coached and shared the administrative tasks the first season. And if we hadn't already, we totally fell in love with the program on December 1, 2007 after all 15 3rd - 6th grade girl participants finished the 5k covered in sheets of ice but absolutely glowing!"
Six co-founders attending training in 2007.
Today, Girls on the Run of Eastern Iowa includes 29 sites from Fairfield and Hills through Iowa City and Cedar Rapids to Hiawatha and Independence. We expect to serve more than 900 girls in 2014.
"I am passionate about helping girls and women let their lights shine through! Girls and women have the potential to change their own lives, their communities and their world, but they are often faced with medical, societal, economic or political challenges that may or may not be internalized and keep them from flourishing. If I can help, through Girls on the Run or with my medical skills and resources, give girls and women the tools they need to shine, this impact can be exponential! As they say in Girls on the Run, I believe that every girl can embrace who she is, can define who she wants to be, can rise to any challenge, can change the world."