Press

For Immediate Release
GGR/Organs R Us media contact: 650.508.9700, ggr@GoldenGateRelay.com

GOOGLE 1 SEARCHES FOR EIGHTH WIN AGAINST STANFORD AND OTHERS. Athletes get set for 190-mile run/125 mile walk during California’s Longest Party! Runners and walkers will relay the message during America’s largest organ donation event. View Course.

SAN FRANCISCO, CA January 1, 2020 – During the Golden Gate Relay (GGR) powered by Rotary International on May 2-3, up to 3,000 runners will travel 190 miles on teams of 12 from scenic Napa Valley, across the Golden Gate Bridge near midnight, to the beach in Santa Cruz promoting the need for donated organs through Organs R Us (ORU). After each 3-7 mile leg, the transfer of the baton from runner to runner symbolizes the transfer of an organ from donor to recipient.

“Welcome to the GGR and thanks for supporting Organs R Us,” booms Nancy Fox over the loudspeaker. “I am an organ donor. I donated my heart to a 57 year old man.” As mouths drop open in disbelief, Nancy continues. “You heard correctly. I am a heart donor, but we have a run to begin so you will hear the rest of my story at the finish.” Nancy sounds the start gun.

Google 1, (seven-time champion) will run against the 2015, 2017-2019 champions from Stanford. In 2019, Google women defeated six-time champion Stanford Lady Trees. After running 36 legs (three legs per runner) through 36 cities and across the Golden Gate Bridge at midnight, runners one through eleven join runner 12 to cross the finish as a team where the winners will be 125,000 Americans waiting for organs.

Great Balls of Fire (SF Fire Dept.), Santa Clara, Salinas, Alameda County and other fire departments run for Napa firefighter, Ken Van Oeveren who received a new kidney on 1/27/19. A Sonoma Rotary team is dedicating their run to lung recipient Mark Hubinette, husband of Rotarian Dr. Kimberly Hubinette. The 2009-2017 Relays were dedicated to Katie Grace Groebner (born 7/16/02) who received a new heart and lungs on 6/14/14 and Google runner, Nick Shelton who donated a kidney to his brother on 5/9/14.

Participating Corporate teams have included Blue Lightning (IBM), Blackrock, Cisco’s Routers, Civil Unrest (MacKay & Somps), Facebook, Gainspeed, Genencor International, Granite Rock, Medtronics, NetApp, Netflix, Run Deloitte Run (Deloitte & Touche), Seagate Xtreme Drives, Shell Team Outta Gas (Shell Oil), Slow as Molasses (Juniper Networks), Thrive (Kaiser Permanente), Triage Consulting (four teams), Twitter, Xfinity (Comcast), Yahoo, Yaks (Thermo Fisher) and Yo..Taxi (Applied Materials). In the Public Safety division are 911 We Run Code 3 (Catati PD), Catie and Annie’s Cops (Vacaville PD, 3 teams), Concord Heat (Concord PD), Gang Green (Environmental Protection Agency), Lady Clowns (USCG), Lifesavers (USCG), Pigs in Pursuit (Woodland PD), Rodeo Clowns (USCG), Sailors With A Running Problem (USCG), Global Reach Reserve Runners (US Air Force), and fire departments from Contra Costa, Petaluma, San Francisco (Great Balls of Fire), Santa Clara (Duct Tape and WD) and San Ramon.

After starting with nine teams in 1995, the GGR became the nation’s largest event promoting organ donation attracting more than 300 teams of 12 runners. The 190-mile course through 36 cities boasts numerous tourist destinations including Napa Valley, Sonoma, Marin, Sausalito, across the Golden Gate Bridge near midnight, through San Francisco and Silicon Valley to the ocean in Santa Cruz County.

The Golden Gate Relay is not about being the fastest. During a celebration of life, the GGR focuses on leadership and doing one’s best for the team. Google commented that the GGR reinforces values that employees need to create a winning company. While conquering as a team what few dare to face alone, runners work together to meet challenges while spending the weekend in a sweaty van. Add the full moon, decorated vans, glow jewelry and “California’s Longest Party” is “the most fun 24 feet can have…in the best place on earth.”

Founded in San Francisco in 1995, Organs R Us supports 125,000 Americans waiting for organs through athletics, trains athletes and promotes healthy organs through public speaking (Google, B of A, Merrill Lynch, SanDisk, others) on fitness, nutrition and deprescription (tossing your pills). Through sponsors NBC TV, CBS TV, SF Chronicle and others, ORU has won numerous awards while generating publicity about the shortage of organs worth $25 million. In the long run, organ donation saves lives.