We are pleased to announce the ambassador program will return for the 2023 Gorham Savings Bank Maine Marathon.
Now in its seventh year, the Race Ambassador program is meant to inspire, motivate and encourage runners. Race Ambassadors are super-fans of the Maine Marathon and are eager to share the event with others online and in real life. That might mean leading a group run, holding an information session outside of Maine, or sharing their training regime through social media.
All are welcome to apply — runners, joggers, walkers, experienced runners, new runners, relay participants, volunteers, past ambassadors, in-state or out-of-state.
Applications are now closed. Choices will be announced in mid-April.
Ron Bernier is a native of Maine – born & raised in Brunswick – currently living & working in Boston, home of another important marathon; which he’s completed 4 times and is hoping to BQ again for 2024. While Ron has been running seriously for only about 10 years (he started as his 50th birthday approached), he has already completed the Abbott World Marathon Majors – Boston 4x, New York 2x, Chicago 3x, Berlin (a PR!), Tokyo, and London. He’s also completed the Paris & Rome Marathons.
Ron started running for the fun and sociable atmosphere of race day (and swag) – starting with local 5k fundraisers. He soon got the bug, joined a run club (a couple of them actually), hired a coach, and the challenge of 26.2 miles keep him in training mode year-round. As an older runner, he especially appreciates the fellowship of run clubs: the range of ages, abilities, interests, and goals plus the mutual encouragement and support. Running – for Ron – means physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being. His only regret… not starting sooner.
When he’s not running, he’s a professor at a small private college in Boston and lives nearby in Salem, MA. Whether training in Boston or along the North Shore, running by the water puts his mind at home, in Maine. He’s very proud to be selected as a Maine Marathon Ambassador and looks forward to sharing this training cycle with a new running community, and maybe recruit a few more “mature” would-be athletes.
“My first ever half marathon was the Maine Marathon/Half/Relay way back at the beginning of my journey”, Ron said, “and I am so looking forward to October 1st along Casco Bay… Distance running and the state of Maine are my two favorite things!” he added.
You can follow along with Ron at @rrbernier on IG.
Lindsay was born and raised in MA and has called Maine home since 2014. She lives in Portland with her husband, Jordohn, and adorable chaos monster – their rescue dog, Leon.
At age 30, she was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. She ended up making some sweeping lifestyle and diet changes to manage symptoms and avoid additional flare ups.
Although Lindsay has been a lifelong athlete, she has never loved (or even liked) running. However, when the pandemic hit, she wanted to try something different. It started with a few Peloton running classes, and it turned into so much more. She started digging into the science of running, how to train properly, and dove into her very first ever race in 2022: the Maine Marathon half marathon. She fell in love with the training process, and realized the race was just the super fun icing on the cake.
For Lindsay, her passion for running is fueled by the journey that got her to it. To see running as a true JOY, as an “I get to” instead of an “I have to.” She considers herself lucky every single morning that she gets to lace up her sneakers and run outside or hop on the treadmill. (She is one of a rare breed who enjoys the treadmill!) She’s very aware that her MS diagnosis could change all of that, so each run is a privilege. One that she for sure never takes for granted.
Lindsay will be running the Half Marathon this year, raising funds for @strideforstride_ and you can follow along with her training on Instagram at @LindsayMakesLemonade
Stride for Stride: https://www.strideforstride.com/
Chris Byrne (he/him/his) is excited to return as an Ambassador for the Maine Half Marathon!
Chris has been running off and on for almost 20 years. He started running to find a simple and effective way to become healthier. Over time, he discovered that beyond the physical benefits, running has also provided an additional outlet in responding to challenges with emotional and mental wellbeing.
Running can look really intimidating and can scare people away. By no means an elite runner, describing his own pace as if he runs in cement shoes, one thing Chris loves the most about the Maine running community is the celebration of everyone who shows up.
Your skill, experience, pacing – it doesn’t matter. Chris believes whatever the pace, whatever the goal, distance, or result – nobody can take away the accomplishment of trying. That effort is yours to own and celebrate!
When not running or working at IDEXX, Chris also offers all-abilities, trauma-informed, community supported yoga classes and functional movement coaching around Biddeford and Scarborough.
As part of his training, Chris is fundraising to support the work of Sea Change Yoga. SCY provides trauma informed yoga classes to many underserved communities in Maine. As part of SCY, Chris has facilitated classes with students who are incarcerated or in recovery for substance use disorder.
Chris is thankful for the encouragement and inspiration of his friends Laura and Steph, his Run Zaddy Relay Teammates, and his wife Noreen who has not missed a race over the past 19 years!
Chris is excited to share his training experiences as they unfold – the good, bad, struggles, and the wins! More than that, he looks forward to cheering you on and can’t wait to see you at the back-of-the-pack in October!
Instagram: @rustproofbottom @chrisbyrneyoga
Sea change yoga: https://www.seachangeyoga.org/
When teacher Hope Hall bought a farm Cumberland 13 years ago, she let curiosity and joy be her guide. At 53, she believes we are never too old to reinvent ourselves! She and her husband Chris, now have a herd of 30 goats on their No Cull Farm, make goat cheese, yogurt, truffles, caramels, and fudge, and help out with the birth of around 60 babies each spring. Hope also leads yoga at the farm and up to 80 people gather in the field regularly to downward dog with goats, try goat cheese and snuggle babies after practice. She knows to keep her farming dream alive it is essential to stay strong and healthy!
Never athletic growing up, Hope feels incredibly lucky to have discovered yoga and running as an adult! At 53, she credits running with helping her refocus and renew her energy each week. In a world that is full of opportunity but also sometimes overwhelmingly fast paced, Hope has found she can contribute her most creative compassionate self when she slows down and takes an hour for herself now and then. A long run is the perfect reset!
Hope has run marathons and halfs in Arizona, NH, Miami and best of all Maine! But it has been awhile since she registered for a long race! She is excited to tap into the Sunflower Farm community for inspiration and hopes to encourage many farm friends to lace up their sneakers, sign up and race! Hall’s goats are a daily reminder that anything is possible with a herd behind us!
Hall believes being the GOAT means waking up each day believing you can make yourself and the world around you a bit better. This hope is an act of boldness which becomes reality with each leap forward.
This year, Hope is joining us in the half marathon distance. You can follow along with her training (&goats) here:
Caroline Lee (she/her/hers) is from Watertown, Massachusetts and grew up in New Hampshire. She has been a runner since college, she started by casually running for stress relief from classwork and gradually signed up for races from 5k, building up to the marathon distance in 2021. She recently completed her second marathon, Boston Marathon 2023 as a charity runner fundraising for the Boston Public Library.
This recent experience of running while giving back has given running a whole new meaning to her, so she is grateful to be selected as a Maine Marathon ambassador to promote a healthy lifestyle in the beautiful state of Maine!
To follow along with Caroline’s training, you can find her on IG at @carolineperhaps
Ian (he/him/his) has been a lifelong athlete, and more importantly a lifelong runner. Though he has had his ups and downs with running, it truly is his happy place. He started running when he was in 7th grade and continued all the way through high school and college where he was a member of the University of Vermont Division 1 Cross Country team. After a string of injuries, he stepped away from the team and picked up triathlons. Even though he shifted his focus to triathlons, running was still a big part of his life. Ian competed in his first marathon in 2011 at the Burlington City Marathon. As of today, he has competed in nine full marathons, 15 half marathons, and a full Ironman.
Ian moved to Maine in 2014, which sparked his love back for running and competing. Since then, Ian has raced all over the world competing in the Chicago Marathon, Bay State Marathon, and Dublin Marathon, as well as countless races from 5K-half marathon distances. Ian lives in Portland with his son (Bear) and girlfriend (Paige) and their dogs Ella, Duke, and Marley. After having his son, Ian struggled to find consistency and drive to get back to his happy place and enjoy running. It wasn’t until last year that Ian finally got the itch to put the shoes back on and hit the pavement. He is excited to share his journey to getting back into shape, and the love he has for the sport that he has been passionate about for over 20 years.
Ian is excited to return to racing after having not for the last few years. He will be running 2 half-marathons, and one of his favorite races, Beach 2 Beacon in preparation for his 10th full marathon at the Maine Marathon. He knows this one will be very special as he will get to run in front of his friends and family. Ian loves the running community, and lives by the motto of his favorite runner of all time, Steve Prefontaine, “To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift”.
To follow along on Ian’s running journey and come back, you can find him on IG at @the_maine_marathon_dad.