clip_image002_040.aspxINDIANAPOLIS – The USA Track & Field Foundation is proud to announce the launching of Run With US! (RWUS!), an in-school/after-school based running/exercise, nutritional and goal setting/self-esteem program that will be directed by Olympic athletes as teachers, mentors and role models, announced Foundation Executive Director Tom Jackovic and Chairman Bob Greifeld today.

Working with local non-profit LA’s Promise, the inaugural RWUS! program will launch on February 8, 2012, at the John Muir Middle School in Los Angeles, CA. The program is focused upon inner-city middle-school youth with the overall goal of fighting the rising tide of childhood obesity and positively impacting the way kids view exercise and nutrition, through the guidance of elite track & field athletes. The Gallup Corporation has agreed to work with the Foundation and will serve as the program’s measurement partner.

“This program is unique in that it supports our elite athletes while giving kids the chance to work directly with our stars of the sport, noted Jackovic. “We are also very fortunate to have quality individuals like Ryan and Ginnie to lead our pilot program.”

The program will be led by Virginia Crawford and Ryan Wilson. Virginia is a 2-time USA National Champion and 4-time World Championship Team USA member, specializing in the 100 meter hurdles. Ryan was the 2003 NCAA Champion and 2008 World Athletics Final bronze medalist.

Joining Virginia and Ryan for the launch day activities will be 2011 IAAF World Championship double gold medalist Carmelita Jeter & other elite athletes, members of the USATF Foundation Board of Directors, local media and other dignitaries.

The Foundation expects to initiate RWUS! programs in several additional locations in 2012. With elite athletes residing throughout the United States, the goal of implementing programs across the country should be realized in the coming years, ultimately impacting thousands of children.