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Carey Pinkowski To Receive CARA Lifetime Achievement Award

With great pleasure, the Chicago Area Runners Associating announces Carey Pinkowski as the recipient of the 2017 CARA Lifetime Achievement Award. The award will be presented at the CARA Award’s Party on February 3, 2018, at the Shapiro Ballroom.

Since its inception, recipients of the CARA Lifetime Achievement Award have been those who have made significant and impactful contributions to the Chicagoland running community. Award recipients are chosen through nominations and feedback from CARA membership, CARA staff, the CARA Board of Directors and the Chicago running community at – large.

As executive race director of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon and the Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle 8K, Pinkowski is a leader in the running industry both locally, and around the world. Chicago is a part of the global running scene thanks to the quality and competition of these events. The Bank of America Chicago Marathon reached its 40th year in 2017 and was highlighted by Galen Rupp becoming the first American male to win the race in 15 years.

“Pinkowski has made a unique impact on running in Chicago. His events inspire runners to train, race and fundraise like few others can. Carey and his team’s impact goes beyond sport!” say’s Greg Hipp, CARA’s Executive Director.

Carey Pinkowski came to the helm of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon nearly three decades ago, serving as its executive race director since 1990. During his tenure, the Chicago Marathon has experienced astronomical growth, expanding from 6,000 registered runners in 1990 to more than 44,000 finishers today, including runners from all 50 states and more than 130 countries.

For CARA, the Chicago Marathon has long been the inspiration for the organization’s popular Summer Marathon Training Program. Nearly 2,000 runners participate yearly at sites across the city and suburbs, with nearly 40% of those runners running for a charity fundraising team. Pinkowski is a regular visitor to CARA training sites and clinics, always providing encouragement to local runners and unique incites on race preparation. Throughout the growth of the event his connection to the local running community has remained visible and strong.

“CARA trains Chicagoland’s runners, but it is the marathon that provides the inspiration. We are not able to make the impact that we do in local running without events like the Bank of America Chicago Marathon”, say’s Hipp.

Pinkowski was born in Harvey, Ill. and raised in Hammond, IN. He has run only one marathon himself: the 1983 Chicago Marathon, stopping the clock in an impressive 2:20:43. As a teenager, he cemented his legacy as a track star at Hammond High School in 1975 when he and two teammates, Tim Keough and Rudy Chapa, each ran two miles in less than nine minutes, becoming the first high school trio to ever accomplish such a feat in the same season. As a solo performer, Pinkowski picked up two state championship titles in the mile. He went on to compete at Villanova University where he was a three-time All American in cross country and track.

Pinkowski has received numerous awards including the Illinois Track & Cross Country Coaches Association Meritorious Service to the Youth of Illinois Award (1998), Chicago Area Runners Association Gold Medal Award for Event Production (1999), MarathonFoto/Road Race Management Race Director of the Year Award presented by Running Times magazine (2001), Runner’s World magazine’s Best Race Director Award (2002), the National Distance Running Hall of Fame’s Fred Lebow Award (2004) and USA Track & Field’s Allan Steinfeld Award for Lifetime Achievement in Men’s Long Distance Running (2009).

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