Posted Suzanna McCloskey on 4/15/2015 |Featured Columns & Series
This year, Girls on the Run will serve its one-millionth girl! We’re honoring this milestone by celebrating what makes each of us one in a million and by showcasing some one-in-a-million women who have made exceptional contributions to empowering girls and women.
Gamma Phi Beta Sorority, a National Partner of Girls on the Run, is filled with passionate members that provide hands-on volunteer support to Girls on the Run councils in the sorority's quest to Build Strong Girls. In honor of National Volunteer Week, we're featuring Gamma Phi Beta International President Krista Davis, a One-in-a-Million woman who knows the importance of volunteers. Prior to her current role, Krista oversaw Gamma Phi Beta's volunteer program development, including recruitment and training of volunteers. Many thanks to Krista and all of Gamma Phi Beta for the phenomenal job they do in spreading enthusiastic volunteer spirit!
Here’s what Krista has to share about being one in a million.
Q: Girls on the Run envisions a world where every girl knows and activates her limitless potential and is free to boldly pursue her dreams! How did you start to realize your own limitless potential and pursue the path to where you are today?
Krista: I started to realize my true potential during my undergraduate years in college. This was where I first took risks in speaking up for what I believed, forming opinions I had to defend in an articulate manner and, most importantly, realizing the more I asserted myself in leadership roles informally and formally, the more I was truly contributing in a valuable manner and building skills all the while.
Q: Of the traits and achievements that help make you one-in-a-million, what stands out most to you?
Krista: I have a never-give-up attitude. I developed this through sticking with my convictions and doggedly pursuing my goals despite setbacks. The more I stuck with it, the more I was able to achieve. And, subsequently, the more I realized I was capable of achieving. By continuing to improve my skills/looking for ways to improve and not giving up, as well as continuing to find creative ways to achieve a goal if the first effort was unsuccessful, I am able to succeed.
Q: Girls on the Run believes that big things are possible when you keep moving forward. Can you share an example from your own life?
Krista: I never was an athlete in any way. When I turned 42, I decided to see if I could run just to see if I could do it, as I needed to get up and start doing something to not feel achy and old! So I started walking in my neighborhood. I remember that moment when I finally got up the courage to try to switch from walking to running. It was scary… what if I failed? I began to change from walking to running one mailbox at a time in my neighborhood. Eventually I was only running and increasing my mileage. I never thought it possible, but six months after my first run around the block, I ran my first half marathon. Six years later, I have completed a total of ten half marathons and was able to be part of a relay team in a full marathon. I never, ever would have thought that possible. My mom would tease me and call me a “fluff chick” when I was younger as a means to say I was not the athletic one in our family, which always made me kind of sad. I found I could be whatever I wanted to be by putting one foot in front of the other and believing in myself!
Q: Which one of the core values of Girls on the Run resonates most with you and why?
Krista: All of the core values at Girls on the Run are outstanding values to use as guidelines for living a full and good life. The value that resonates with me the most is to "express joy, optimism and gratitude through our words, thoughts and actions." Believe it or not, this is not an easy thing to do all the time. Life is short, and it is important to find the bright spots in each and every day. Optimism is contagious, and spreading it to others is invaluable.
Q: What insight or advice would you offer a young girl today? What would you say now to your 8-year-old self?
Krista: Be strong. Be you. Have confidence and believe in your amazing self. Each of us faces our own challenges in life; keep working on the end goal, and do not be afraid to celebrate your accomplishments along the way! You’ve got this, sister!
Who do you think is One in a Million? Take the One in a Million Challenge today and help build a chain of affirmation! Post a photo of someone you think is One in a Million, make a donaton to Girls on the Run in their honor and ask them to accept the challenge to do the same.