In September 12, 2013, the thirteenth annual five kilometer Freedom Run continued the tradition of remembering the heroes and victims of the September 11, 2001 tragedies and, at the same time, the sacrifices that our local police officers and first responders make on a daily basis. The Freedom Run is organized by the Dallas Association of Young Lawyers Freedom Run Committee, which is chaired by Allison Grossman, John Hardage, Rob Ruhlen, and Lene DeRudder. Proceeds from the Freedom Run benefit the Assist the Officer Foundation.

In previous years, participants have run west from Dallas City Hall and across the Houston Street viaduct before returning to the Freedom Run Festival on the City Hall Plaza. However, due to the closure of the Houston Street Bridge for construction of a streetcar, the 2013 race took runners on a tour of downtown Dallas.

The Freedom Run is not possible without the support of our generous sponsors. Premier sponsors included: Equivalent Data, Luke’s Locker, and Miller Agency. Freedom Sponsors included QuikTrip, Thompson & Knight Foundation, McKool Smith, P.C., Ben E. Keith, Anderson Tobin, and McGuire, Craddock & Strother.

Camp Gladiator representatives led the pre-race warmup. After the race, runners enjoyed the Freedom Run festival. The festival featured activities for the entire family, including fantastic live music courtesy of Timmy and the Naturals. Food was available in the VIP tent by Campisi’s and delicious snow cones were provided by Kona Ice.

This year, the Freedom Run Committee had many members step up and make the race such a huge success. Thank you to everyone from the committee for providing such a strong foundation for the event. A special thanks to committee members Lauren Brown, Mackenzie Wallace, Joshua Kipp, Paul Simon, and Jodi McShan for going above and beyond with all of their efforts. Another special thank you goes to Michael Mata with the Dallas Police Association for essentially serving as an addition co-chair on the committee.

Proceeds from the Freedom Run benefit the Assist the Officer Foundation. The Assist the Officer Foundation provides assistance to officers who are facing the loss of income due to serious injury, life-threatening illness, or other catastrophic events. Immediate assistance is also available to families of first responders in the unfortunate event of death of an active officer. This year, the Dallas Association of Young Lawyers and the Assist the Officer Foundation took time to honor the memories of Kenneth Lucky Harris, Jr. and Stanley Allen Wilson. Since 2002, the Freedom Run and the Dallas Association of Young Lawyers have raised over $262,000 for the Assist the Officer Foundation.

Thanks to all of our wonderful sponsors and volunteers, the Freedom Run continues as an opportunity to honor the heroes and victims of the tragic events on September 11, 2001. The Freedom Run is also a time to celebrate the freedom that we enjoy every day by paying tribute to those who have sacrificed and continue to sacrifice so that we may continue to enjoy our freedom. The 2013 Freedom Run was a tremendous success and we look forward to making next year even better!

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