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John Dudas – Founder of Huffing for Stuffing Thanksgiving Day Run
After growing up in Boston with a family tradition of running a “Turkey Trot” before sitting down to a holiday feast, he recognized an opportunity here in Bozeman to bring folks together to support a worthy local cause on Thanksgiving. John is active in the local running community and has run 44 marathons to date in 19 states around the country, including the *love of his running life* – the Boston Marathon – 13 times. John, his wife, and two young sons are proud members of the Big Sky Wind Drinkers running club and enjoy the vast quality of resources available in Gallatin Valley.
Monica Ruiz - Special Projects Coordinator at Gallatin Valley Food Bank and Huffing For Stuffing Co-Director
Monica grew up in Billings and made her way to Bozeman in 2002. She has been involved with the Gallatin Valley Food Bank since 2012, during which she has been a student intern, a Summer Lunch Site Coordinator, and a cook for the Community Cafe. In 2014, she became the Services Navigator/Special Projects Coordinator for the food bank. She enjoys connecting clients to community resources and helping conduct program evaluation. In her free time, she enjoys riding her mountain bike and running on trails. She has been the co-director extraordinaire of Huffing for Stuffing since 2014; coordinating volunteers, helping with the website and social media, and loving race day.
Robin Mayer -Special Events and Marketing Manager for HRDC and Huffing For Stuffing Co-Director
Robin grew up in Bozeman and is proud to be a part of Huffing For Stuffing. Robin has a long history of volunteerism for various HRDC initiatives, such as the Community Cafe, the Warming Center and the Food Bank. In 2014, she was thrilled to be hired as HRDC's Outreach and Events Coordinator. Her responsibilities include marketing and fundraising for HRDC and co-coordinating all HRDC events, including the annual Carnival and Huffing For Stuffing.
Barb Kuhlmeier - HRDC Program Accountant (RPM) and Huffing For Stuffing Starting Line Guru
Barbara was born and raised in Bozeman. After moving around the country for several years she has settled back in her hometown. Barbara started running late in life, competing in her first road race in her early 40’s. Since then she has run races all over the country, distances from 5k – marathon, including Boston. Ever looking for a challenge, Barb moved onto triathlon, learning to swim at the age of 45. She has won several national and world titles and raced for Team USA. Barb has since retired from racing and enjoys her time skate skiing, cycling, and swimming. She has worked for HRDC since 2015 and helped stage the start and finish lines at last year’s Huffing for Stuffing. Barb is looking forward to the 13th year of Huffing for Stuffing and is honored to be part of the event.
Leigh & Toby Holleman - Community Representatives
Our running community power-couple! Leigh started volunteering with the Food Bank in 2008 after running at the inaugural HFS race in 2007. She hasn’t missed an HFS race and started volunteering with the race committee in 08 or 09. Her wonderful husband Toby was able to join the committee as well and has taken over most of the volunteer duties from Leigh, leaving her to coordinate Kohl’s volunteers on race day and some registration days as well. She has been an avid runner for over 30 years and hopes her contagious passion for running and volunteering rubs off on everyone she meets!
Greg Lozano - Community Representative
Greg moved to Bozeman in 1997 and quickly adapted to the life of a ski bum. He enjoyed this lifestyle for 10 years. Greg is the founder of Convergence Communications and has been working with the food bank for the past 12 years. In 2010 he started volunteering to help with the sound system at HFS. In 2013, he decided to join the HFS committee to be more involved in all aspects of this great community event.
Lori Christenson - Jack of all trades, Kids' Run Director
Lori is the Gallatin Valley Food Bank's former Program Manager and wears many hats. Lori was a HUGE part of HFS for many years and used to help run the show. Now, she is using her Public Health background to educate the community about Environmental Health, which focuses on the health and safety of Gallatin County residents both indoors and outside. She is also an outdoor enthusiast.
Jeremy Alcoke, HRDC Youth Case Manager
Jeremy is a transplant to Montana and once called the Roaring Fork Valley, in Colorado his home. Jeremy has been employed with HRDC since 2014 and is the Youth Development Coordinator. He administers programs focused on youth experiencing homelessness and supporting our community's foster youth. He is passionate about exploring natural environments with his beautiful wife and two remarkable young children, which gives him the passion to help shape and contribute to his community. Jeremy is an avid angler and he gathers energy for life from rivers and spending time with family.
Jill Holder, Food & Nutrition Director for HRDC
Jill works with all of the Food and Nutrition Services of the HRDC (Gallatin Valley, Headwaters and Big Sky Community Food Banks, Summer Lunch, KidsPack and Senior Groceries). She loves being outside and seek untrammeled places and enjoy searching for charismatic mega-fauna in my time off. For most of her life, she has worked for organizations that utilize volunteers. Volunteers add compassion and enthusiasm and volunteering is one of the few things that we know will truly make a difference in this world.
Unflappable Turkey Mascots:
Dee Metrick has worked at Reach Inc., a local non-profit, since February of 1999. Dee believes in the mission of HRDC and considers it an honor to serve as the official female turkey every Thanksgiving morning. She views running as an activity to enhance the most playful, beautiful parts of life. She will never miss an opportunity to run in a fun costume for a great cause.
When he is not wearing a turkey outfit, Rob Maher is a professor and department head of Electrical & Computer Engineering at Montana State University. He is also currently serving as president of the local Big Sky Wind Drinkers running club, and he loves the wonderful Bozeman community of friendly, caring, and joyful amateur athletes.