Woodland principal issues challenge to students, staff
BEACON FALLS — Woodland Regional High School students and staff and runners alike are gearing up to run for a good cause.
Woodland Worldwide, a school-based, nonprofit organization with a mission to advance the rights of women and girls within the community and around the world, is hosting its fourth annual Run for a Revolution Oct. 12. The event, which features a 5K run and a 2 mile walk, will take place at Woodland, 135 Back Rimmon Road., beginning at 10 a.m.
The run will help raise money toward the group’s mission of helping move women and children from oppression to opportunity, Woodland Worldwide co-advisor Lisa Olivere said.
Proceeds this year will also go to the Somaly Mam Foundation, which helps eradicate modern day slavery, and to the Gimbichu Project, which provides health and educational services in Ethiopia, Olivere said.
Co-advisor Meghan Hatch said this is the group’s signature fundraiser of the year.
“It is what enables us to fund our initiatives,” Hatch said.
The group is getting some help this year from Kurt Ogren, Woodland’s new principal.
Ogren, who has been running since he was in high school, is not only participating in the race, he has created the KO Challenge.
“I was out running and thought what could I do to increase participation,” Ogren said.
Ogren is donating $1 for every Woodland student or staff member that runs in the race and $10 for every student or staff that beats him.
“I thought it was fun to make it a little competitive with people trying to beat me,” said Ogren, who hopes to finish the race in less than 21 minutes.
Ogren replaced former Principal Arnold Frank retired this year. Frank was the only principal the school had since it opened in 2001.
Ogren said the school year is going very well so far.
“The climate and culture [at Woodland] is phenomenal. The students are great. The staff are hard-workers,” Ogren said.
Ogren, who was an administrator at West Haven High School for the past 15 years, said he enjoys the smaller size of Woodland.
“It’s easy to start getting to know people and feel like you’re a part of the community,” Ogren said.
Olivere is pleased with Ogren’s challenge.
“Kurt Ogren has been very, very supportive of Woodland Worldwide,” Olivere said. “We’re thrilled the new principal has jumped in and fully supported the program.”
Hatch echoed Olivere’s comments, saying that Ogren has helped make people aware about the event.
“He’s definitely creating a buzz, which is great,” Hatch said. “We’re thrilled to have his support.”
Olivere said the race draws many Woodland alumni and between 350 and 500 participants each year.
“It’s like a huge homecoming week,” Olivere said.
The event features a DJ and activities for children and a race course filled with rolling hills and beautiful scenery, Olivere said
“It’s challenging, but absolutely picturesque. There are beautiful views when you get to Back Rimmon Road,” Olivere said.
Registration for the Run for the Revolution is available online at www.woodlandforwomenworldwide.org.