Girls on the Run is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a world where every girl knows and activates her limitless potential and is free to boldly pursue her dreams.


Girls on the Run East Central Illinois was founded in May of 2011, with our inaugural season just 4 short months later in September of 2011. We had 15 brave girls join us for season one, and the community support was amazing. Our council has greatly expanded throughout the region during the past five years, with over 2,150  girls served thus far, all helped and encouraged by more than 400 volunteer coaches! We are currently serving girls in 6 counties including; Coles, Douglas, Effingham, Molutrie, Piatt, and Shelby. We are continuing to grow at a rapid rate, with more families, schools and communities hearing what an amazing life-changing experience GOTRECI is giving to so many girls across the state.

Girls on the Run International was established in 1996 in Charlotte, North Carolina by Molly Barker. What started with thirteen girls in one school has grown to over 200 councils in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. With the help of almost 100,000 volunteers, Girls on the Run served nearly 180,000 girls in 2015, including our millionth girl! Girls on the Run continues to grow and currently hosts more than 350 end-of-season 5K events across the United States, making the Girls on the Run 5K series the largest in the country. Girls on the Run has also expanded to include middle school girls through Heart & Sole, a program dedicated to the unique needs of adolescent girls.

core values

Recognize our POWER and RESPONSIBILITY to be INTENTIONAL in our decision making


Express JOY, OPTIMISM AND GRATITUDE through our words, thoughts
and actions


NURTURE our physical, emotional and spiritual HEALTH

STAND UP for ourselves and others

our people


Sarah Dowell

Council Director

“My favorite GOTR moment is that I get to stand at the finish line, which is the absolute best spot to be during the Girls on the Run 5k! I get to watch all of our girls, as they beam with pride as they sprint towards the finish line, witness the running buddies (moms, dads, siblings, teachers, or family friends) hold the girls’ hands and wrap their arms around the them, and witness many community members complete their first 5k event.”

We're always considering passionate individuals to join our team and help us inspire more girls in the East Central Illinois area.

Current Opportunities
Our Board

Travis Spencer

Board President

The Fields Church

Wade Bradley

Board Vice President

RR Donnelley

Catherine Bovard

Board Treasurer

RR Donnelley

Jamie Willis

Board Secretary

Retired - Mattoon Middle School

Holly Bailey

Board Member

Howell Asphalt

Amy Borntrager

Board Member

Coles Moultrie

John Covington

Board Member

The First National Bank

Scott Eggleston

Board Member


Jerry Esker

Board Member

Sarah Bush Lincoln Health Center

Kyle Gill

Board Member

City of Mattoon

John Hedges

Board Member

First Mid-Illinois Bank & Trust

John Inyart

Board Member

Inyart Tire & Auto

Gayla McDaniel

Board Member

Retired Trust Officer

Natalie Parkerson

Board Member

First Mid Insurance

Greg Ray

Board Member

Craig & Craig

Dale Righter

Board Member

Illinois State Senator

Bill Rowland

Board Member

Retired - FMIBT

Keaton Summers

Board Member

KC Summers

Carl Walworth

Board Member

Retired Journal Gazette Publisher/BFS Author

Hans Warner

Board Member

KC Summers

At the heart of Girls on the Run are amazing volunteers whose commitment and passion impact the lives of girls each year.

Board Opportunities

Girls on the Run East Central Illinois
221 N. 16th St.
PO Box 875
Mattoon, IL 61938

(217) 234-9494 Fax (217) 234-3481