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May 2019 - Tim Parker
Congratulations to our May Volunteer of the Month, Tim Parker! Tim has been a volunteer with Atlanta Track Club for the past three years. Since then, he's been volunteering with the Club over 20 times a year as well as 10 to 15 other races a year. He describes the energy of these events to be incredible. However, his favorite time of year is the All Comers Track & Field Season where you'll find Tim volunteering throughout the month of May and June.
Do you remember your first time volunteering? What brought you back again?
I think my first time volunteering was at the Decatur Dekalb 4 Miler. I had been considering volunteering for a while and just never got around to it, but I met another Atlanta Track Club volunteer at a technology conference in Monterrey, California, of all places. After that I signed up, and it was great fun. I was really appreciated by all the runners, from first to last.
What is your favorite Atlanta Track Club event? Why?
Do you have a favorite volunteer assignment?
All Comers Track & Field Meets are my favorite. I don't know of another event where you can see five year-olds run and jump for fun and challenge, a close race with four minute miles, and Ms. Betty set a world record all in the same night. The Wingfoot XC Classic would be a close second.
What is one of your best memories from volunteering at any race?
I handed out medals at a half-marathon in August and it was impressive to see the lead runners come in so fast in the heat; but, it was clearly a huge personal challenge for many of the later participants, and being able to see them finish and hand them a medal and a bit of assistance if needed was an amazing experience.
What is your favorite thing about volunteering with Atlanta Track Club? What brings you back?
I really believe that exercise and improving fitness is one of the best ways to improve lives and well being, and walking to running is one of the most accessible ways to do that. For most runners, the Club and other races are the main events driving their fitness goals for the year, or are a great way to have fun in a big group run. Either way, I have fun helping them keep safe and have fun.
Cone Crew. It's a really important part of any race. We usually end up near the start to cheer the runners off, and it's a really great workout!
Do you have any advice or words of wisdom for any new Atlanta Track Club volunteers?
Stay safe and have fun helping the runners stay safe and have fun! Also, make sure you know the locations of the restrooms, the start, and the finish, as well as what time the race starts. As soon as you put on the volunteer vest, one of your job assignments is "Ask Me" no matter what your main assignment is.
What organizations do you volunteer with beyond Atlanta Track Club?
I volunteer for runningnerds and Run Social Atlanta events, as well as the Girls on the Run 5Ks.
Runningnerds is an organization I'm involved with because they are a great group obsessed with running and having fun with it. Girls on the Run encourages fitness from a young age. Dedicating time to that is one of the best things any of us can do.
What do you do for a living?
I'm a Principal Research Scientist at Georgia Tech in the area of organic electronic materials, but being a professional volunteer would be nice!
Tell us something interesting about yourself.
I've lived in a lot of the regions of the country: the midwest, southern California, the desert southwest, the pacific northwest, and now Atlanta. This is a great city with amazing and in all ways diverse people, and Atlantans should really be proud of that.
Volunteer of the Month Update
Mizuno strives to be Atlanta's essential and reliable running brand. Since 2018 they have been committed to YOU, the essential and reliable volunteers who make our 30+ events and programs possible. They provide the Volunteer of the Month with seasonal apparel and discounted footwear to make all those hours spent on your feet more comfortable.
Previous Volunteers of the Month
"Volunteer of the Month" began in March of 2015 with the launch of our new website as a way to honor and recognize our amazing Atlanta Track Club volunteers who go above and beyond the call of duty. Congratulations to our Volunteers of the Month and thank you for all that you do!