Join us for our 5th Anniversary as an exclusive SLO Marathon + Half Ambassador!
2016 SLO Marathon Ambassadors
Dani Bahnsen: Hi, I'm Dani Bahnsen. I'm a personal trainer and natural running coach based in Camarillo, California. Running was my therapy when I worked in the corporate world, and am now lucky to have changed careers to follow my passion. I am currently the running coach for the Ventura County Marathon Training program. I'm proud to have served in the US Marine Corps and US Air Force Reserve. SLO marathon is truly my favorite!
Diane Bressem: Hello!! So happy to be back for my 2nd year as a SLO Marathon Ambassador! #RaceSLO is definitely the SMALL TOWN BIG RACE of the year! Love spreading the word of such a unique race. Perfect mixture of rolling hills, glorious weather, and a great little town to run through. Join me and let's RaceSLO .........FAST!
Martin Bressem: Hello Athletes, my name is Martin, also known as MarathonPitstop. I started running in late 2011 and I hated it….just one small problem, I made the mistake of committing to running a half marathon! WHY? I don’t know… I stuck with the painful training and who would have known I'd become a run ""Junkie""!!!!! Shortly after completing the half marathon I decided to run a marathon “FOR FUN” Ha Ha my time was 4:45 and I thought “WOW” Dreamily… Boston here I come!!!!! HA HA HA I looked up my Boston qualifying time and sadly to say I needed to run a MARATHON in three hours and thirty minutes…. yes I said 3:30!! What cut an hour and fifteen minutes off a time I thought was marvelous!!!!! You’ve probably already figured it out, of course I decided to commit to running the Boston Marathon………First thing I did was challenged myself to run at least one marathon a month in 2014 and I completed 14…Ooops! I am honored to be an Ambassador for the SLO Marathon, for a number of reasons, it is truly an awesome well run race and I qualified for the Boston Marathon while running the SLO Marathon. YIPPEE!!!! I get so inspired every day watching ALL the athletes train, compete and achieve their dreams! I ran the Boston Marathon in 2015 proudly even though it rained the entire time. Connect with me and we can train in person or virtually!
Katie Bull: Katie Bull has been living on the Central Coast for 17 years. She graduated from Cal Poly and loved the area so much, she never left. Katie started competing in races in 2009. She has completed various races in San Luis Obispo County, including SLO Marathon, Miracle Miles for Kids, Tinley Triathlon, and the San Luis Obispo Triathlon. She is an avid soccer player, and currently plays in the San Luis Obispo Women's Soccer League. Katie is excited to train for and run her second half marathon, beat last years’ time, and to be a part of the 2016 SLO Marathon Ambassador Team!
Fallon Clowes: Hi, I'm Fallon otherwise known as Slacker Runner. I had a late start to running but I soon grew to love it. I love the challenge it brings as well as all the amazing people I have been able to meet through it. I've run numerous races from 5K to 25K but the half marathon is my favorite distance. SLO is one of my favorite places to be and the SLO Marathon is one of my favorite races. 2016 will be my third year running it and I can't wait for race weekend!
Brooke Davis-Warner: I am a San Luis Obispo local, or slocal as I like to call it. I am a lover of everything fitness related, especially running. Around town I am know as that crazy fitness girl always running. My husband and I have a CPA practice downtown San Luis Obispo and we crunch numbers all day long on Higuera Street. Having an office downtown gives you a pulse of the town. It’s energizing, and with all that energy I run. I have run over 30 races since 2008, both locally and internationally and don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. I am thrilled to be an ambassador for the San Luis Obispo Marathon. I love to share my passion for health, fitness, running, and this amazing town with others. My husband and I have run the half the last three years. This year I’m running the full for the first time, and attempting a Boston Qualification.
Glenda Finley: Hi! I'm Glenda from Kingsburg and I love running on the Central Coast! 2016 will be my fourth time to run the SLO half marathon. I have completed over two dozen half marathons since 2012 and I am training for my third marathon. I am part of a huge running group in the Central Valley, BNB - Bad News Bears runners, who enthusiastically promote healthy, enjoyable adventures! I also love playing in the mud in OCRs and finding the best, and most fun, races around the state. I like to share my runs and experiences on IG and Twitter so that others can see what fun working for a goal can be and the celebrations of it!
Pepe Gonzalez: Pepe Gonzalez started running with his dad at age 3 years old when he was just a little kid. He hated running from the start, but all his dad was doing was trying to make his life a difference which reflected him for the rest of his life. Pepe’s dad Max didn’t have much opportunities to run much in High School, but all that changed when he started running with his son Pepe. From then on there, he knew his son was the one. Ever since 5th grade he started breaking records all the way throughout High School and until now. He’s won many races all around the SLO COUNTY Area that he has become one of the toughest runners to race against and beat. Pepe has become a dedicated Ultra Runner that has been inspired by others around him to keep on going in life and to pursue his future dreams to making it to the Olympics someday.
Heather Irwin: Hi, I'm Heather Thomas Irwin, a SLO local for about a decade. I've been a runner for 30 plus years and have done the SLO Marathon full and the Half each. 2016 brings another SLO Marathon Half for me. I travel and race internationally and love all distances. I'm a marriage and family therapist by profession and also a yoga and spin instructor. Getting out to run along our beaches or through our hills is always a thrill.
David Kline: Three years ago at the age of 45 I put on my first pair of running shoes and went out for a run. I did not know at the time I would fall in love with this sport or how much it was going to change my life. I started running trails and loved it. Then came my first registered race in 2013 with the SLO Marathon 5K. I ended up coming in first place for my age group that year. Since then I have run numerous 5 and 10Ks for charities, 5 Half Marathons, two of which have been the SLO Half and I am on my way to run my first Full this year at the 2016 SLO Marathon. I run as often as I can and also do indoor rowing for cross training and incorporate strength training with weights and yoga classes. I feel very fortunate to live and work here on the Central Coast and to have scenic trails and roads where I can run. I am at my freest when I am running. I am excited to be an Ambassador for the 2016 SLO Marathon. I always share my journey along the way with my running log, training tips, and my nutrition tips.
Marc Kravetz: Marc is the EVP of Murad, Inc, a skin care and wellness busisness in El Segundo, CA. A long history of writing and directing for health, fitness and wellness companies led me to admit that I was personally none of the above. In 2010 I decided to take a shot at changing that. Started running (more like walking) by the beach in Santa Monica, and decided I loved it. My first Half was in Hollywood in 2011, my first full was the LA Marathon in 2012, and now I'm hooked. My 2nd year as ambassador, I missed the race last year with an injury. I'm only here to speak about my own personal experiences, I'm an amatuer, and my only goal is to share what I go through in case it can help someone else in a similar position. Outside of running I love sports, poker, politics, and most of all my now-grown kids and family.
Charles Lim: Charles is a former couch potato who has turned into an avid road and trail runner. He is proud to have made some amazing accomplishments in the world of endurance events over the last few years, some of which include completing three 50 mile and six 50K ultra marathons, ten full marathons, an olympic and sprint distance triathlon, and a 100 mile bike ride. Charles had tons of fun running the SLO Half Marathon last year as one of the SLO Ambassadors and is looking forward to celebrating the 5th anniversary of the San Luis Obispo Marathon and Half Marathon by running the full marathon for 2016!
Jadd Martinez: Hi, I’m Jadd! I fell in love with the Central Coast after moving here for work in 2005, and have been exploring and enjoying the trails ever since. In 2013 I stumbled into the crazy sport of ultramarathons and got completely hooked! Three years later, I’ve completed 14 ultras (6, 50k’s; 2 100k’s, 3, 100 milers), and have a pretty full calendar in 2016. Also for the past four years, I’ve been involved with the SLO marathon as either a racer or pacer, and am excited to pace the half marathon again this year.
Van McCarty: I'm a 45 year old triathlete/ultra runner from San Luis Obispo. I have the honor of winning the inaugural SLO Marathon in 2012! I split my racing between Ironmans, marathons, and trail ultras. Current Ironman PR of 9:22:59 (IM Arizona 2015) and marathon PR of 2:36:50 (2014 Santa Barbara Marathon). Married with two awesome kids (daughter 12, son 10). Looking forward to representing SLO and inspiring all comers to run the full or half marathon in 2016!
Laura Moir: Laura started running in 2009 and hasn't stopped since, completing nearly 90 races to date including two full marathons and over 30 half marathons. At first, running was just a way for Laura to get back into shape after having her second child, but it quickly became a lifelong commitment and Laura is always challenging herself to train smarter, push harder and run farther. This will be Laura's third time running SLO and her 36th half marathon. As a Bay Area native, she is very excited to complete 13 happy miles through the beautiful terrain of San Louis Obispo.
Lisa Nagy: Hello! My name is Lisa, but most of you know me as Runner In Training. I was lucky enough to be invited back to be a SLO Marathon Ambassador for my 3rd year in a row! This year marks the 5th year of this iconic race and I am so excited to be apart of this amazing year for the SLO Marathon. I had to take some time off of running last year to welcome my daughter into the world, but I am ready to hit the pavement once again. I look forward to hearing your comments, postings, and training runs as we prepare for the 2016 SLO Marathon!
Katrina Rojas: My name is Katrina Rojas and I am a 43 year old wife and mom of 2 teenage sons. I work full time as an elementary school secretary and running is definitely my favorite way to relax! I began running 3 years ago after losing 35 pounds and trying to find a way to maintain my weight. After my first Half Marathon I had definitely caught he bug. I have now completed 12 half marathons, 2 full marathons and countless 5ks and 10ks. I love the sense of empowerment running gives me and absolutely love the running community – last year I joined up with a great local running group in Fresno ‘The Bad News Bears’. I am an Instagram junkie who loves to chronicle my running. Growing up in Fresno my grandparents always took us to the Central Coast, I have such fond memories and it is most definitely my 'happiest place on earth’! I enjoy running at the central coast every chance I get. I ran the SLO half marathon last spring and was hands down one of my favorite races ever! I cannot wait for the 2016 race and I am honored to be a SLO Race Ambassador for 2016.
Nadia Ruiz: Beginning at the age of 14, Nadia ran her first marathon side by side with her father. Since her first, it changed her and she fell in love with the sport of endurance running. Nadia has now completed and counting 123 marathons, 62 half marathons, 11 ultras, and 5 Ironman triathlons, frequently in the top of her age group or top overall women. With a Bachelor's of Science, Master's Degree, and Teachers Credential from UCLA, Nadia works as a high school Biology educator, coach, and marketing consultant for the past 11 years. She shares the passion of fitness, health, and education with her family and friends, and hopes to continue to encourage others to seek their goals and dreams.
Michelle Serna-Garcia: My name is Michelle aka One Bad Mother Runner, the name is just a catchy little mind game I play with myself, after all they say running is 90% mental right? I chose my name for one reason and it is not because I am fast, or have been running for years, or have won awards to show I've come in first place. My definition of a bad mother runner is in the name itself Mother ... If you're a mother you'll probably understand without even having to read the rest of this Bio, but being a mother, well, keeps you busy! Keeps you worried, keeps you a little crazy and if you're fortunate enough to have a career as well then you too my friend are a bad mother runner ....See in the past I used my career, my children as an excuse that I cannot get healthy or exercise, too busy, too tired, too crazy ( although this may still stand true runners are only half crazy) ... But now it is my motivation, my reason and mostly my sanity ! I don't make excuses anymore I MAKE TIME! I'd like to think I'm setting examples for career women/mothers in showing them that they can have it all. I became a runner in 2012, ran dozens of 5k’s & 10k’s throughout 2013 and in 2014 at the age of 33 I ran my first Half Marathon. That fall I ran my second half marathon and in 2015 I unbelievably ran 9 half marathons! This is my first time running SLO half marathon and it has been on my wish list for 2 years now. I am ecstatic to not only be running it but to be part of the ambassador team! See you there! Peace, Love & Happy Running!
Karl Schmidt: Hi, my name is Karl. I am a 22-year-old runner from Roseville and recent graduate from Cal Poly SLO. I began running my freshman year of high school, and continued throughout college with the Cal Poly Distance Club. Although I mostly raced cross country and track in the past, I enjoy running marathons and competed in the SLO Marathon the past four years. Anticipating some strong competition this year and looking forward to another year of training!
Tracy Stuntz: I run with a group called the Bad News Bears runners... We're called that because we don't fit it to what people consider a traditional runner. We're oftentimes late for races, we're loud, we take run selfies at mile 10, and we jump in with both feet. And that's exactly how I am - I ran my first half marathon 2 weeks after I started running because a friend needed someone to run with. Last year, I ran the SLO full marathon as my first ever marathon + longest ever distance. You can find me on social media as traftycracy - I share all my wacky running adventures on Twitter and Instagram. You can also find some running accessories that I make on my etsy shop.
Lynda Trujillo: Hey runners! I'm Lynda, a West Coast newbie that just moved here from Florida last Fall. I'm ecstatic to be part of the SLO's 5th anniversary race this year! It is going to be absolutely epic! You'll likely catch me taking hundreds of pictures race weekend to capture the beauty and excitement of this course so I can share it with you. I've run 9 half marathons to date along with countless 5ks,10ks, 15ks, and even started doing trail races since moving to Silicon Valley. My major goal right now is to get stronger and more fit overall before I turn 30 this Summer while I chase down some PRs. Follow me on my training journey below :D'
Ashley Baumgartner: Ashley Baumgartner is our returning SLO Marathon, Half Marathon & 5k Ambassador Program Manager. Since moving away from San Luis Obispo after graduating from Cal Poly, Ashley still feels a bit of her heart is left in SLO. She is happy to continue to run the SLO Marathon Ambassador Program, share about her own running journey, and promote and read all the good things about the lovely Central Coast and its star race. While she's still fairly new to running, she's happy to tackled the SLO Half Marathon for the fourth time this year while working up to a full marathon someday. In her free time, you'll find her photographing people she loves and doing calligraphy.