Joan Benoit Samuelson always did her best thinking running on the beautiful roads of Maine, and it gave her the idea to combine her desire to give back to her community with her passion.
The Olympic gold medalist founded The TD Beach to Beacon 10K in 1998, drawing runners from New England and across the globe to the picturesque tree-lined streets and breathtaking ocean vistas in Cape Elizabeth, Maine. Each year, the race benefits a different charity to help support the children in the community. The Cromwell Center for Disabilities Awareness has been selected as this year’s beneficiary.
Founded in 2003, The Cromwell Center for Disabilities Awareness promotes safe, respectful, and inclusive schools and communities through its school-based curriculum and resources for parents and educators.
“The work of the Cromwell Center for Disabilities Awareness continues to make a significant, positive impact on the lives of children and their families across the Maine region,” said Larry Wold, TD Bank Maine Market President. “This organization's focus on the inclusivity and respect of people of all abilities and backgrounds directly aligns with TD's values, and we couldn't be more pleased to name them this year’s beneficiary of the Beach to Beacon.”
Watch the video below to learn more.
The Cromwell Center will further benefit from fundraising activities, including the race’s charity bib program, as well as increased awareness through its association with one of Maine’s premiere sporting events.
When Ken Shapiro, board member of the Cromwell Center, learned the organization was selected as this year's Beach to Beacon beneficiary, he took it as a personal challenge to compete in the race himself with his modified recumbent bike alongside the wheelchair racers.
Shapiro was diagnosed with a cerebral aneurysm in 2010; the day after surgery to remove the aneurysm, he experienced a stroke that has left him with limited use of his left side. “I had to re-evaluate my priorities which led me to get involved in further supporting the disability community—of which I was now a part of—and that led me to The Cromwell Center,” said Shapiro.
With its combined focus on sustainability and charitable donations, the TD Beach to Beacon 10k exemplifies TD Bank’s longstanding commitment to community enrichment through The Ready Commitment, a multi-year platform that actively promotes inclusivity, economic vitality, environmental well-being, and health, and increases opportunities for people of all backgrounds to succeed in a rapidly changing world. To learn more about TD's Beach to Beacon 10K, visit https://www.beach2beacon.org/.