Approximately $45,000 was raised in Saturday’s 9th annual Shell/Martinez Education Foundation 5k Run Walk for Education in downtown Martinez, according to preliminary totals.

Some 614 runners and walkers competed in the event, with Kevin Selby of Martinez repeating as the first place winner in the men’s category and Carin Ward of San Francisco coming in first in the women’s category. About 200 people volunteered to make the event a success, including dozens of students from Martinez Junior High School and Alhambra High School. Aaron Sullivan, a Martinez Junior High student who designed the winning logo for this year’s race, called the race to a start from a grandstand at the Main Street plaza.

Complete results are posted downtown on the side of the Bank of America building.   

The Run began in 2003 with the goal of rallying the community in support of the schools, and promoting health and wellness. It is the hallmark community event of the Shell Martinez Refinery, which devotes staff time to organizing the event and matches all contributions. The Martinez Education Foundation (MEF) uses the Run proceeds to give grants to Martinez schoolteachers for needed technology and other equipment in classrooms.

“We appreciate the continuing support of the Martinez community, supporting the Martinez schools,” said Larry Lippow, MEF president. “This Run is a win-win. Martinez schools get better, which makes the Martinez community get better.”

Paul Gabbard, general manager of the Shell Martinez Refinery, walked in the 5k with his wife, Deirdre. “I’m glad to part of this great community event,” he remarked, adding that Shell is proud to support the MEF. “It’s great to be able to raise funds that can be used for legacy equipment in the schools, including technology and computers.”

Martinez City Councilman Mark Ross came in fourth in the race with a time just under 20 minutes.

“This is a great run for a great community,” he said after crossing the finish line. 
In addition to the major sponsorship provided by the Shell Refinery, sponsors for the 9th Annual Run-Walk for Education included: Shell Chemical Plant, Brand Energy Services, Romero General Construction, Sierra Processing, Benicia Fabrication, Starcon, Petrochem Field Services, ConocoPhillips, Marty O’s Catering, Les Schwab, Siemens, Roadrunner Sports of Concord, Brinderson, Contra Costa Electric, A3IM, Nalco, Newtron, Mistras, L&M Industrial Fabrication, J.T. Thorpe, Performance Mechanical, Pacific Coast Chemicals, MRC McJunkin, Groundbreakers, PG&E, RSC, Underground Construction, Certified Safety Products, Air Products and Joyce Boghosian.  

A run for young children was held after the 5k event was completed, with 5-year-old Indie Johnson coming in first.

The Run was preceded on Friday evening by a fundraising pasta feed and silent auction, sponsored by the Martinez Rotary and Kiwanis clubs, at the Martinez Senior Center.  Next year’s 10th annual Run for Education will be on Sunday, Oct. 7, 2012.

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