ASHLEY KUMLIEN[ runner/founder ]
School: University of Wisconsin-La Crosse
Degree: BS in Exercise & Sport Science-emphasis in Fitness, Certified Adventure Boot Camp Instructor Occupation: Fitness Adventure Boot Camp Instructor & Personal Trainer
I grew up in a suburb of Milwaukee, Wisconsin in a big family of two sisters and one brother. My mom, Jill was diagnosed with MS before I was born so we've had to live with the affects of her symptoms since we were very young. I went to school in Western Wisconsin at the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse, graduating in 2007 with a BS in Exercise and Sport Science. From there I took a job with a cruise ship company to work on their Sports Deck at the Rockwall & Surfing machines.
It was on the cruise ships where I met my fiancee, Andrew Date, and came up with the idea to run across America to raise funds and awareness for MS. Andrew & I resigned from the cruise company in early 2009 and started the MS Run the US, Inc. organization.
After months of planning, on March 22nd, 2010 Andrew & I left from San Francisco, CA as I started running to New York. With Andrew's help I ran nearly a marathon a day, six days a week, for six months all while fundraising until we reached New York on September 28th, 2010. Upon completion I became the 16th female to ever run across America.
Our 2010 event raised nearly $50,000 in donation dollars, in which we gave to The National MS Society and The Montel Williams MS Foundation. Our current project is the Largest Relay Run Across America for MS set to go in 2013. We will be organizing 23 runners to relay end-to-end segments. We have set a fundraising goal of $500,000 for this event.
My Mother, Jill, has been living with MS since 1980. Her grace and continued passion for life despite the disabilities she faces with having MS is the inspiration to my life and is the drive behind my passion to continue fundraising for MS until we find a cure.
TEAM JILL2009 - MS Society Walk
WORDS oF WISDOM
"Giving frees us from the familiar territory of our own needs by opening our mind to the unexplained worlds occupied by the needs of others."
"In the confrontation between the stream and the rock - the stream always wins. Not through strength, but through persistence."
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