Fishtown Beer Runners Teams with Legacy of Hope for Mayor’s Cup

On Aug. 10, runners representing almost every running club in Philadelphia will take to Belmont Plateau in West Fairmount Park for the 5th Annual Philly Mayor’s Cup event, a friendly competition measured across 5K, 5-Mile, 10K, 10-Mile and Half-Marathon races.

In addition, each club has chosen a local organization or charity to fundraise for in the lead-up to the annual event. This year, Legacy of Hope is partnered with the Fishtown Beer Runners, a social running club in Philadelphia founded in 2007. In addition to enjoying a frosty beverage after their weekly runs on Thursday evenings, the club regularly gives back to the community through philanthropic involvement.

FBR founder David April was glad to see both groups come together for Mayor’s Cup.

“I’ve been involved with Legacy of Hope for some time now. I’m actually a board member for Legacy of Hope, and I’m also one of the co-leaders of Team Relentless Hope, which is one of the programs sponsored by Legacy of Hope,” April said.

Team Relentless Hope is “a community of cancer survivors, patients, caregivers, and healthcare professionals who recognize the importance of exercise, comradery, and support in the path to recovery and overall health and wellness.”

“It’s a support group made up of survivors, patients and those who want to help. We usually meet at 9 a.m. on Saturdays at Au Bon Pain on 10th Street or at the Patient Support & Welcome Center at 914 Chestnut Street, which is part of the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center. The best way to find out more is through our Facebook pages for Team Relentless Hope and Legacy of Hope,” according to April.

April explained that Legacy of Hope’s two-fold mission of funding not only cancer patient support, but cancer research as well, touched a chord with both him and FBR. 

Furthermore, April described a unique “cross-institutional research committee” which worked with other medical centers in the city to find the top junior researchers in the field.

Besides fundraising happening after each weekly FBR run in advance of Mayor’s Cup, two large fundraiser events to benefit Legacy of Hope will be taking place at Philadelphia Brewing Company in Kensington on July 18, in addition to the fundraiser finale at Johnny Brenda’s in Fishtown on Aug. 8, featuring live music and raffle prizes.

April also spoke about how it felt to discover that many members of the Philadelphia running community, in addition to his own oncologist, both battled cancer and kept their regimens of health and exercise intact – something that inspired him when he learned of a reoccurrence of his own cancer just over one year ago.

“My oncologist told me that because of my health and fitness, he was able to sustain my treatments better. I’m able to withstand the various medications I’m taking, but also the fact that I’m healthy means that I don’t have other mitigating circumstances that I have to deal with, along with the cancer,” April said.

“Now, I’m able to live an active lifestyle through treatment. 10 years ago, that probably wouldn’t have been the case. So, I’m very grateful for that and also very hopeful, because my doctor said there are new tools in the toolbox every year for battling my type of cancer.”

April also spoke about the “transformative power of running” and how when it brings people together, special things can happen. The partnership with Legacy of Hope certainly could be counted as the latest example.

April will serve as a Captain of this year’s Mayor Cup team, along with fellow FBR members and Co-Captains Keith Tomaselli and Fred Druding. Sign up for the FBR Mayor Cup’s team here.

Legacy of Hope founder Mike Rowe also expressed gratitude regarding this year’s partnership with FBR.

“The Fishtown Beer Runners are where running, community, and friendship perfectly coalesce, and we are honored to be partnered with them in this year’s Philly Mayor’s Cup,” Rowe said.

The collaboration between the two groups has already yielded life-changing results.

“With the support of the Fishtown Beer Runners, we’ve already prevented two local families affected by cancer from losing their homes this week. So much as I have the capacity to ease a person’s suffering, I have the responsibility to act,” Rowe added. 

Legacy of Hope’s founder remains resolute in completing its stated mission.

“We must strive not for what has already been accomplished or that which seems easily attainable, rather we must imagine the world when our loved ones never again hear the words ‘You have cancer’, and then reach for this with unwavering resolve,” Rowe said.

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Nia Andrews

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Rebecca Blinn

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Carol Sollenberger

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Maree Lavo

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Bryan Lathrop

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Kimberly S. Reed

An award winning international speaker, author, corporate trainer and diversity, equality and inclusion executive, nationally recognized thought leader, expert, strategist and advisor to some of the world’s most influential organizations in global professional services, health care, financial services, consumer products and pharmaceutical industries.

Kimberly is a seasoned leader in transforming organizations into high-performing enterprises and challenging leaders to live without limits, with more than 20 years of HR, talent acquisition, and diversity & inclusion experience; successfully turning around troubled diversity practices by designing, building, leading, and shaping high-performing cultures at global organizations with robust strategies, global employee development programs and enterprise-wide initiatives that have increased revenue growth and organizational brand eminence.

Michele Redrow

Michele is a Director on the Legacy of Hope board and also serves on the Executive Committee.

mary chicorelli

Professional:  Mary is a certified city planner for Philadelphia, a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association as well as the Philadelphia Bar Association, and the Pro Bono Honor Roll First Judicial District of Philadelphia.

Bio: Mary’s insight into the legal world is invaluable to Legacy of Hope, both in keeping our daily operations moving fluidly as well as making connections for our patients and their families when needed.

“Michael reached out to me about 2 years ago through mutual friends. We worked together to help a woman with stage 4 cancer get her electricity turned back on after it was shut off during the winter. I’ve been 100% supportive of Mike’s vision since then.”

joseph ruggieri, jr

Education: Bachelor’s of Science from West Chester University in Management and Finance

Bio: As a member of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.’s upper management team, Joseph brings a wealth of knowledge regarding finances, management, team-building and planning to the Legacy of Hope board. Joseph linked up with Michael, our President, and Wells Fargo began supporting Legacy of Hope annually.

“My father passed away from what started as Colon Cancer in 2015. Cancer is horrible and if there is something I can do to help others impacted I would want to be a part of it.”

David April

David is the founder of the Fishtown Beer Runners, an organization with chapters all over the world based here in Philadelphia.

dr. kevin kelly

Dr. Kevin Kelly leads Legacy of Hope’s Scientific Review Board to seek out and support the most promising cancer research in Philadelphia using a merit-based system.  He is Jefferson’s Director of Solid Tumor Oncology.

greg garber

Greg Garber is the director of Oncology Support Services at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center.

Gina Mancuso

Gina’s experience as the very successful co-owner of CoreFitness, LLC coupled with her expertise in planning special events makes her the perfect Vice President for Legacy of Hope. With energy, passion, and drive that makes her seem superhuman, Gina’s connection to our mission is a personal one.

“Both my father and my dear childhood friend were diagnosed with cancer within 3 months of one another. They were surrounded and supported by friends and family throughout their battle and until their passing. No one should suffer through a diagnosis alone and, without Legacy of Hope, some people would do just that.”

Michael Rowe


Volatile Media Management’s Mover, Shaker, Changemaker Award – February 2017

Miles Mack Community Services & Leadership Honorable Mention – 2016 TJUH Emergency Department Technician of the Year, Physicians Choice Award – 2015

TJUH Emergency Department Technician of the Year, Physicians Choice Award – 2014


With his free time so limited, Michael manages to fuse his work with his other passion: running. Whether it is with the Fishtown Beer Runners, our own Team Relentless Hope, or his closest friends, Michael can often be spotted on the streets of Philadelphia keeping himself fit and active.