Headquartered in New York City, New York Road Runners (NYRR) is dedicated to advancing the sport of running, enhancing health and fitness for all, and meeting community needs. NYRR's running-based youth programs, which currently serve more than 100,000 children in hundreds of schools and community centers, promote children’s health and fitness, character development, and personal achievement in underserved communities.


A Running Start was produced for NYRR by Emmy-winner Eric Weil and EVW Communications. In addition to Eric Weil, the core EVW team for A Running Start was Zac Nicholson, Meshakai Wolf, and Kate Nicholson. Founded in 2006, EVW is a fast-growing digital media production and strategy company specializing in original content for businesses, non-profits, and broadcast. More information about its work and accomplishments is available at:

Content Consultants

Laurence Greene, PhD, received his graduate degree in exercise science and went on to teach integrative physiology and scientific writing at the University of Colorado-Boulder. He is a former coach at the high school and college levels and is co-author of Training for Young Distance Runners, a leading resource on the subject for coaches, parents, and teenage endurance athletes. Larry was the Florida state high school cross country champion in 1977 and 1978. After college, he competed as a professional distance runner. In 1984, Larry ran the fastest half-marathon in the world (1:01:27). He works as a scientific and medical writer in South Florida.

Ed Poirier is the Youth Wellness Specialist and Track Coach at the Attleboro YMCA in Attleboro, MA. He has been coaching young runners for the past 25 years and provided advice and training as a columnist for, a Runner's World Magazine website. As a masters runner, Ed has won nine gold medals, three New England 1500m Masters Championships, and he was named to the USA Masters All American Team seven times. Ed graduated from Rhode Island College with a Bachelor of Arts and received advance training and USA Track & Field Coach Certification from the USA Olympic Training Center San Diego in 2001.

Form Experts and On-Screen Coaches

Neil Fitzgerald has played an integral role in the DOE Developmental Track and Field Series in New York City where thousands of children learn about running and lifelong fitness through the sport of track and field. In high school, Neil achieved a national ranking with an 800m best of 1:50.83. He earned his BA from Brown University and two masters degrees from Teachers College, Columbia University. He has worked as a running coach, teacher, and teacher educator in New York City since 1996. As a masters runner, Neil has competed at four World Championship meets between 2005 and 2009 where he won three gold and three silver medals.

Wendy S. Rhodes, P.T., OCS is a physical therapist specializing in running biomechanics. She directs the Running Analysis & Injury Prevention Program at New York Physical Rehabilitation & Wellness, an outpatient physical therapy clinic in New York City. She holds a B.S. from Springfield College and a M.S. in Physical Therapy from Texas Woman's University. She is board certified in orthopedics (OCS) through the American Physical Therapy Association. She is a certified personal trainer through the American College of Sports Medicine. She lectures and advises individuals and groups throughout New York City on running biomechanics and injury prevention.


Holter Graham is an actor, award-winning narrator, and lifelong runner. He has completed five marathons, raised thousands of dollars for Team for Kids by running two ING New York City Marathons, and earned his current PR of 3:08:40 in Boston. He has run Ragnar and River to Sea relays with his running team, Bridle Path Track Club, and competed at the Olympic and Half-Iron distances in the Triathlon. He is president of AFTRA NY, the performer's union. He is currently in chemotherapy to overcome leukemia, and intends to break the three hour mark in the Baltimore Marathon within the next two years.


A Running Start was created with the help of our generous supporters:
  • The Cedar Hill Foundation
  • The Argosy Foundation
  • Bryant McBride

New York Road Runners would like to acknowledge the following people who worked with EVW Communications on the production of A Running Start:

Ben Cain, Tristan Cook, Clarissa De Los Reyes, Osato Dixon, Benjamin Kessler, Shiho Miyazawa, Kerry O'Brien, Carmine Picarello, Adam Salky, Rick Siegel, Rebecca Sugar, Zak Sos, and Charles Wilson.

Very special thanks go out to the coaches and runners whose enthusiastic participation shines through in every frame:

Nicholas (Niko) Viglione, Darien Rosa, Rolonda Evelyn, Andrea Tocci, Harry Haveles, Brian Gonzalez, Coach Shawanda Weems and the PS/MS15 Jaguars, Coach Amy Cooper and The School at Columbia, Coach Eric Stein and the Far Rockaway/FDA VI Falcons, Coaches Keisha Lewis and Rudy Thompson and Medgar Evers College Prep, Coach Kalif Person and the Boys Club of New York ABBE Panthers, Coach Emily Sanderson and the PS 246 Lightning, Coach Nancy Landau-Gahres and the MS 136 Sunset Park Runners, Coach Michael Stanton and Parkside Community Center, Coach Kenneth Robinson and Kips Bay Boys and Girls Club, Coach Kyle Hall and Peace and Diversity Academy, Coach George Calano and The Collegiate School, Coach Jenny Smith and The Nightingale-Bamford School, and Coach Matthew Miller and Poly Prep Country Day School.

Original Music by Gary Meister/Naturalistic
All music copyright ©2009, Musicos-Mellenialismos (BMI)