Richard Donovan - The Runner
Richard was the first person to run marathons at both the North and South Poles and holds the world record for running marathons on all seven continents at 4 days 22 hours 3 minutes. He has represented Ireland at international level and won races such as the Himalayan 100-Mile Stage Race, Inca Trail Marathon, Everest Challenge Marathon and Antarctic 100k. He has also been race director of Commonwealth and World Championships at ultramarathon running and was an Executive Director of the International Association of Ultra Marathon Runners, the world governing body for the sport. A former economist, Richard organises the North Pole Marathon, Antarctic Ice Marathon, Antarctic 100k, Volcano Marathon and World Marathon Challenge (7 marathons, 7 continents, 7 days).
Alvin Matthews - The Beneficiary
Alvin is a runner from Ventura, California, who had the misfortune of falling 25 ft from a roof in 2014, becoming paralysed from the waist down. He has overcome marathon running challenges such as the North Pole Marathon and Antarctic Ice Marathon in the past but is now faced with a new type of challenge. In Alvin's own words "This sucks on many levels but has fortunately brought me closer to friends and family. The recovery will be quite the journey but that's ok, I'm trying to make lemonade with these lemons I've been handed". Money raised for Alvin will go towards ongoing medical bills, rewalk bionic legs, a custom wheelchair and renovations to his home to make it wheelchair friendly. Let's help a fellow runner and get Alvin on the road again! Please donate at http://www.gofundme.com/y4fsgc.
Heather Carr - The Route Designer
Heather is an orthodontist from Minneapolis, USA. In addition to indoor cycling and strength training for fitness, she likes to run various distances up to the marathon. She particularly loves the opportunity to combine travel and running and successfully completed the Antarctic Ice Marathon on mainland Antarctica in November 2014. Among her upcoming destination marathons are the Reykjavik Marathon in Iceland in August 2015 and the North Pole Marathon in April 2016. Heather loves epic US scenery and designed a detailed and awesome route that combines some of the best scenery the USA has to offer over a 3,100+ mile coast to coast distance.
Paul Donovan - The Logistics Coordinator
Paul is a two-time Olympian on the track, a world medalist, a former sub 4-minute miler, an NCAA indoor champion at both 1500m and 3000m, and held the fastest indoor time in the world for 3,000m in 1987. More importantly, he was a polar bear guard at the North Pole Marathon in 2013 when Alvin ran the race. Paul, who is Richard's brother, will be the principal support driver for the Trans North America Run and will coordinate schedules and transitions for others when he is not available.
Support drivers include Richard's brother Gerard Donovan, his sister Jacinta Hennessy, his work colleague and friend Fearghal Murphy, and two other friends, Paul Grealish and Sarah Ames.