Road Runners Club of America

Empowering Everyone to Run!

Race Director Certification Syllabus & Presenters

Course Syllabus and Presenters

Module 1 - 66 minutes

  • Taking the Plunge - Presented by Phil Stewart
  • Corporate Structure, Budgeting & Finance - Presented by Jean Knaack
  • Developing the Time Table and Checklist - Presented by Don Kardong
  • Course Design - Presented by Jean Knaack

Module 2 - 81 minutes

  • Sponsorship Development - Presented by Becky Lambros
  • Marketing and Promotion - Presented by Sean Ryan
  • Event Registration - Presented by Sean Ryan
  • Medical & Safety Issues - Presented by Phil Stewart

Module 3 - 80 minutes

  • Legal, Risk Management & Insurance Issues - Presented by Jean Knaack
  • Equipment, Supplies & Specialized Personnel - Presented by Dave McGillivray
  • Special Entrant Categories - Presented by Don Kardong
  • Managing Volunteers - Presented by Becky Lambros

Module 4 - 81 minutes

  • Municipal Relations - Presented by Don Kardong
  • Rules of Competition - Presented by Jean Knaack
  • Expo, Packet Pick-up, and Hotel Relations - Presented by Becky Lambros

Module 5 - 65 minutes

  • Race Logistics & Operations from Start to Finish - Presented by Dave McGillivray
  • Timing & Scoring - Presented by Sean Ryan

Module 6 - 78 minutes

  • Awards and Results - Presented by Sean Ryan
  • Other Types of Events - Presented by Jean Knaack
  • Post Race - Presented by Phil Stewart
  • Before Next Year - Presented by Phil Stewart


phil stewartPhil Stewart: Stewart is the author of the textbook, Organizing Running Events.  He is editor and publisher of Road Race Management newsletter and the Road Race Management Directory. In addition through his company, Road Race Management, Inc., Stewart organizes the annual Road Race Management Race Directors’ Seminar and Trade Exhibit, an annual sport-wide industry gathering. He is the event director of the Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 mile, the premier springtime running event in Washington, DC. The event is part of the Professional Road Running Organization World Championship Circuit and is continually rated as one of the outstanding races in America. He is a frequent emcee at awards ceremonies and press conferences in part because of his vast knowledge of the people and happenings in the sport. He currently provides commentary for the Gasparilla Distance Classic (Tampa, FL), the Quad-City Times Bix 7 Mile (Davenport, IA), the Utica Boilermaker 15k (Utica, NY), and the ACLI Capital Challenge (Washington, DC). Stewart was one of the founders of Running Times magazine (1977), one of the two nationally circulated running magazines. Stewart received notoriety in 1979 when he took the dramatic photos of President Jimmy Carter’s collapse during a 10k road race at Camp David. The photos were published in Sports Illustrated, Time, People magazine and other publications. Stewart received an Honorable Mention in the "News Picture Story" category by the National Press Photographers Association. The photos were nominated for a Pulitzer prize the same year. Stewart has served as President of the DC Road Runners Club; Vice President of Administration of the Road Runners Club of America; Treasurer of the USATF (formerly TAC) Men’s Long Distance Running Committee; and has served on the USATF Board of Directors.

DMSESports_Banner02Dave McGillivray: As the founder and president of DMSE Sports, Inc., a special-event management company, McGillivray has produced or consulted on more than 900 mass-participatory athletic events throughout the world, including 23 Boston Marathons; the 2004 and 2008 USA Women’s Olympic Marathon Trials; the 1990 Triathlon World Championship, the 1998 Goodwill Games Triathlon, and the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. McGillivray is also an accomplished motivational speaker.  More than 1,600 audiences from corporate executives to high school students have experienced McGillivray’s signature ability to engage and inspire listeners.  His 30-year career in the sport of road racing and triathlon earned him the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award presented to him by Competitor Magazine.  McGillivray was also presented with the prestigious Race Director of the Year award by Road Race Management, Inc., and sponsored by Running Times Magazine.  In 2005 he was inducted into the Running USA Hall of Champions.

Don_Kardong_PhotoDon Kardong: Kardong has been a runner since 1964. He ran four years of cross country and three years of track at Stanford University, missing one season of eligibility (1969) while attending Stanford-in-Britain.  He earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Stanford University in 1971, and, in 1974, a bachelor’s degree in English and a teaching certificate from the University of Washington. After graduating, he ran his first marathon in 1972 finishing in 2:18:06. He competed in the 1972 U.S. Olympic Trials in the marathon and 10,000 meters and finished 6th in both events. On May 22, 1976, he finished 3rd in the U.S. Olympic Trials Marathon (2:13:54), and was 4th in the U.S. Olympic Trials 5000 meters a month later. He finished 4th in the Olympic Marathon in Montreal (7/31/76), running a personal best of 2:11:16, missing the bronze medal by 3 seconds. In 1977, he helped launch the Lilac Bloomsday Run, which now attracts nearly 50,000 participants a year.  Kardong is an author, speaker, consultant, and online coach. He has been a contributing writer for Runner’s World magazine and has published three books.  He was president of the Road Runners Club of America from 1996 to 2000.

Becky_Lambros(Med_Res)Becky Lambros: Lambros is the Deputy Race Director for the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run in Washington, DC, which attracts thousands of runners from around the world. She is also a former RRCA Executive Director (2004 to 2005) and oversaw the rebuilding efforts of the RRCA following a separation period of several hundred members.  She began her career at the YMCA in Warren Pennsylvania as a Fitness Program Director.  In 1980 she moved to the Washington DC area to become a fitness specialist at NASA where she prescribed exercise programs for government employees (and met her husband of 30 years). Her career highlights include YMCA Executive Director, Manufacturers Representative, Regional Director (nonprofit management advisor) for the Epilepsy Foundation of America, Pharmaceutical Sales and Fundraiser for the American Heart Association.  Her undergraduate degree is in Physical Education and she has a Master of Science in Business Administration.  She has volunteered for the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run since 1980.  Starting as an on course volunteer she moved to Director of the 3K race and then to Volunteer Coordinator before becoming the Deputy Director.

sean_ryanSean Ryan: Ryan is a race director armed with an MBA.  Since entering the field in 2003, Ryan has directed marathons, Half Iron triathlons, Turkey Trots, bike tours, fun runs and the seventh largest 10K in the country.  Ryan applies a BA in Finance from Notre Dame and an MBA in Marketing from Northwestern to the evolving and increasingly professional field of participatory athletic event management.  His friend Dave McGillivray in Boston likes to call him “the most over-educated race director in the country.”  In his free time, Ryan tries to keep one foot on the participant side of the fence, running in at least one marathon and a few shorter road races each year. He lives in Green Bay, Wisconsin, with his wife, two kids and a neurotic dog who also likes to run. Go Packers!

Jean_PhotoJean Knaack: is the Executive Director of the Road Runners Club of America where she has served in the role since 2005, bringing twenty years of nonprofit management experience to the position. She is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin at Green Bay with a Bachelor’s of Science in Human Nutrition. She earned a Master's of Public Administration with a concentration in nonprofit management from George Mason University. She regularly counsels running club and event leaders around the country on various topics of importance to the running community. Through her work with the RRCA she is a fitness advocate promoting running as healthy exercise and a competitive sport on a national scale. She served on the coordinating committee that developed the first National Physical Activity Plan for the United States. She has experience managing the financial operations of organizations ranging in size from $100,000 to $10 million. Jean has extensive skills in organizational and financial development, board and member relations, and program planning and implementation. She is an avid runner and has completed several marathons and countless road races and triathlons. She was a finisher at the inaugural Ironman Louisville race in 2007 and finished Ironman France in 2009 and Ironman Coeur D'Alen in 2010.

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