Meet Team Heart & Stroke: TCS New York City Marathon 2017

Thousands of athletes from across the globe gather annually in New York City for the TCS NYC Marathon. This year, the world-renown marathon takes place on Sunday, November 5th and we are proud to announce that more than 30 volunteers from around our area, and around the country, will be participating in the NYC Marathon on behalf of the American Heart Association. It is our honor to highlight the runners and fundraisers who comprise Team Heart & Stroke, because they embody the best values that our organization represents. Over the next two months, we hope to introduce you to these special men and women!

Zachary Gotlib, New York, NY
Occupation: Dentons US LLP – Attorney
Hobbies: Running! Watching and playing almost any sport. Volunteering for the AHA.

“Having had open-heart surgery 6 years ago, I gained a better appreciation for how crucial living life to the fullest is. My WHY is the second chance I got, and using it to make sure others get that same opportunity!”



Virginia “Ginny” Harris, Shelby, NC
Occupation: Watts Water Technologies – Sr Business Analyst
Hobbies: Travel , running (run/walk), visiting adult children

“I began running 5 years ago at age 53.  I weighed 50 lbs more than today.  I never dreamed I would keep it up and run a marathon.  I am running for AHA in memory of my sister Pam, who died at age 17 with congenital heart disease.  I have lived a fairly unhealthy life and smoked for 30 + years.  Now, I realize, a little late in life, how quickly it all goes.  I have three adult married children and am expecting my first grandchild in December.  My reason to live a longer, healthier life is so I can spend time with my children and hopefully their children one day.”



Derek Eassey, Port Washington, NY
Occupation: Brandwatch – People Team Manager, North America
Hobbies: In my spare time you can find me running, trying new creative recipes, dining out, traveling to new spots, exploring NYC, scuba diving, reading for pleasure and for work, and exploring many of the city’s museums.

“My two kids are my inspiration for a healthier life. I want to lead by example and show them that they can do anything that they set their minds to, while maintaining a healthy lifestyle.  I believe it is important to push myself mentally and physically to do everything I can to be healthy and happy. I want to impart that positive and vivacious spirit on my kids.”



Nancy Manning, 
Bethesda, MD
Occupation: Shulman, Rogers, Gandal, Pordy & Ecker PA – Paralegal
Hobbies: Any form of exercise: trying new activities; eating; hot yoga for the mind, body and soul; travelling; spending time with family and friends; and baseball.

“Both my sister and brother had a hemorrhagic stroke over the past 2 and a half years (with Atrial Fibrillation as a cause) and I don’t want that to happen to me.





Thea Watkins, New York, NY
Occupation: Lloyds Bank – Senior Vice President
Hobbies: Travel, good food, theater, my family, my dog and two cats!

Heart disease has impacted the lives of three people who have been closest to me. My Dad died way too young from heart disease; my mother, who is now in her 80’s, has severe Aortic Stenosis; and a couple of years ago my husband requires stent surgery, whilst still in his 50’s. Matters of heart health are very close to my heart. I am running the 2017 New York City Marathon in honor of these remarkable people!

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