Elizabeth Rogers is the event coordinator for the HBF Geraldton Runfest which is a running and walking festival. This is an annual event hosted by the local running and walking club, the Geraldton Harriers. The Geraldton Harriers club has a calendar of 25 events including the Runfest and run weekly from the start of April through to the end of September.
2014 will see the 15th annual Geraldton Marathon take place but it’s only the second time it’s been part of this bigger festival. This year they are also for the first time going to have a junior’s race on the Saturday afternoon and the adults will compete on the Sunday.
Geraldton Harriers have put on a marathon since the year 2000 and they have also had a half marathon and 10km race run concurrently which has been a pretty small event. Then in 2013 the committee said they wanted to make it attract more people and Elizabeth said, “we’ve got to give people something to do because 10km is a long way and that’s the minimum distance, we need to include shorter distances and we need to start making it more professional and more applicable to the wider community”.
Elizabeth joined the Pollinators after hearing good things about their community approach to developing individuals and organisations for the betterment of Geraldton. She says, “Doing the Catalyst program allowed me to meet like-minded individuals who were operating their own businesses and people working in local government and not for profit organisations like myself and learn how to make a proper business model which is self-sustainable in the long term”.
Pollinators Executive Officer, Andrew Outhwaite, said Liz was a great example of a social entrepreneur and RunFest a great example of an innovation. “The willingness to think differently has paid off for Harriers, and the fact they’ve received calls from other towns in Australia seeking to replicate their success is a testament to Liz and the team’s hard work”.
This profile was researched and authored by freelance journalist Steven White.