Author: Claire Haupt
Volunteering and community involvement are values my parents instilled in me when I was young. When I found myself in Denver in the summer of 2005 looking for a job, I turned to what I knew to do – get involved.
A close friend on the board of directors for an up-and-coming marathon that was focusing on economic redevelopment recommended I talk with the then executive director. The executive director quickly suggested I talk with the public relations firm supporting the inaugural Colfax Marathon, MGA Communications.
Having absolutely no idea how long a marathon really was, or what exactly I would be doing, I gave it a shot. And I am so glad I did! Nearly five years later, I see the economic redevelopment the marathon has brought to Colfax Ave., I still volunteer for the marathon and other nonprofit organizations in Denver, and I have grown professionally for nearly five years at MGA Communications (and no, I am not still volunteering, they do pay me.)
Together with the Colfax Marathon Partnership, MGA won a PRSA Silver Anvil in Community Relations for the inaugural event in 2006. With efforts ranging from strategic planning and community engagement to media relations, advertising and public affairs, I still consider myself very lucky to have had such an amazing and intensive “crash course” in virtually all of the services MGA provides. MGA and the Colfax Marathon Partnership worked together for the second marathon in 2007. Then, the training wheels were off – the marathon was, and continues to be, a great success.
The Colfax Marathon will always have a special place in my heart because it introduced me to so many things in Denver – a cultural richness in a then-new city that I likely would have never known, a career path I might not have pushed myself to pursue, and now truly love! It also fostered the sense of community and volunteerism that my parents introduced me to when I was young.
The now Kaiser Permanente Colfax Marathon is May 17, 2010. And they are still looking for volunteers. Sign up today – I hope to see you there!
This post is part of a series on volunteering or working with nonprofit organizations. We’d love to hear about your experiences as well.