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New York Road Runners and Tufts University Announce Plans to Transition and Enhance the New Balance Foundation Billion Mile Race, a National Physical Activity Campaign Currently Reaching 2.6 Million Children

Rachel Pratt, NYRR senior vice president of youth and community services, and Dr. Christina Economos, ChildObesity180 at Tufts University director, to present at 2018 Innovating a Healthier Future Summit in Washington, DC

Washington, DC – WEBWIRE

New York Road Runners (NYRR) and ChildObesity180 at Tufts University announced plans to reinforce efforts to improve the health and wellbeing of children nationwide. In order to sustain and enhance the organizations’ shared commitment to get kids moving, ChildObesity180 will hand off its New Balance Foundation Billion Mile Race campaign to NYRR.  The organizations plan to convene to finalize next steps at this week’s Innovating a Healthier Future Summit, in Washington, DC.
Supported by the New Balance Foundation, ChildObesity180 developed and incubated New Balance Foundation Billion Mile Race, a campaign that has helped spark a national movement of school-based walking and running clubs, with nearly 9,000 participating schools representing 2.6 million children. In July 2018, the campaign will be transitioned over to NYRR and integrated into the organization’s current free youth and community fitness program offerings.
Following the transition, NYRR will evolve and enhance the Billion Mile Race, drawing on resources from Rising New York Road Runners, the organization’s flagship youth program. For nearly 20 years, NYRR has offered free youth fitness programs and today annually serves 267,000 youth across the country. Participants of the Billion Mile Race will receive access to Rising New York Road Runners’ curriculum, which is backed by the latest research in physical literacy and long-term athlete development.
“Rising New York Road Runners is designed to encourage and enable children across the country to get active in a way that builds confidence, motivation, and the desire to be physically active for life,” said Rachel Pratt, senior vice president of youth and community services at NYRR. “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to expand our impact to the current and future participants of the Billion Mile Race and are honored ChildObesity180 has chosen to pass the torch to New York Road Runners.”
Collaboration between NYRR and ChildObesity180 began in 2016. Prior to the launch of Rising New York Road Runners at the start of the 2017-2018 school year, Tufts conducted a pilot study to measure the impact of the program’s curriculum, and this spring a second study will be conducted analyzing the effect on pre-school aged children specifically. Both organizations work closely with the New Balance Foundation, which supports charitable organizations committed to promoting healthy lifestyles among today’s youth for the betterment of their larger communities.
“We know that physical activity helps kids be healthy, happy, and academically successful, and through our research, we identified school walking and running programs as an effective and highly scalable approach to get kids moving more,” said Dr. Christina Economos, director of ChildObesity180.  “When we launched New Balance Foundation Billion Mile Race in 2015, we issued an ambitious call for schools to rally together toward a hugely aspirational goal, and we’ve been thrilled to see thousands of schools rise to the challenge—and now we couldn’t be more excited to see the initiative continue to grow and thrive under New York Road Runners’ leadership.”
ChildObesity180 and NYRR provide a powerful example of how Partnership for a Healthier America organizations can build on each other’s strengths to amplify impact. During this week’s Innovating a Healthier Future Summit, the Partnership for a Healthier America’s annual summit, Pratt will be speaking on the “Child’s Play: The Building Blocks of Physical Literacy” panel, and Economos will be moderating the “Who Runs the World? Girls!” panel.
NYRR’s youth programs are supported by Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), the Premier Partner of NYRR and NYRR youth and community programs and the title sponsor of the TCS New York City Marathon; New Balance, the Official Athletic Footwear and Apparel Partner of NYRR; the New Balance Foundation; and the Fairway Community Foundation. For more information on Rising New York Road Runners please visit
About New York Road Runners (NYRR)
In 2018, NYRR is celebrating 60 years of helping and inspiring people through running. Since 1958, New York Road Runners has grown from a local running club to the world’s premier community running organization. NYRR’s commitment to New York City’s five boroughs features races, community events, youth running initiatives, school programs, and training resources that provide hundreds of thousands of people each year, from children to seniors, with the motivation, know-how, and opportunity to Run for Life. NYRR’s premier event, and the largest marathon in the world, is the TCS New York City Marathon. Held annually on the first Sunday in November, the race features 50,000 runners, from the world’s top professional athletes to a vast range of competitive, recreational, and charity runners.  To learn more, visit
About ChildObesity180
Based at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, our premise is unique:  Top national leaders from the private, public, nonprofit, and academic sectors committed to developing, measuring, and implementing evidence-based solutions to reverse the alarming epidemic of childhood obesity in America. Support for ChildObesity180 was provided in part by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The JPB Foundation. The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of the funders. New Balance Foundation Billion Mile Race is generously supported by New Balance Foundation. To learn more, visit and

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