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Heidi Swartz

 Organization:The Cowtown

Heidi Swartz
Heidi Swartz has been with The Cowtown organization for 25 years, serving as Executive Director for 18 of those. A true servant leader, Heidi is passionate and focused on two things. First, that the race experience is safe, well-organized, under budget, and uniquely challenging enough to engage runners at all levels to return year over year making Fort Worth a sporting destination. Second, that the races benefit area youth, raising awareness around the C.A.L.F. (Children’s Activities for Life and Fitness) program. Spearheading the C.A.L.F. initiative bestows Heidi with a national legacy. Created in 2009 to help children lace up and pursue a lifelong love for fitness, Heidi’s vision has been named “The Top Kids’ Running Program in the Nation” in both 2011 and 2020 by Running USA. Each year, Cowtown staff visit 120+ schools teaching students proper running technique as well as healthy nutrition. Low-income youth at these schools are identified and fitted for new running shoes. Schools are provided grants to make race entry fees more affordable and then youth train for a Cowtown 5K. In the past 13 years, Heidi and her team have delivered 50,000 grants and pairs of shoes to kids in need. Heidi has a particular passion for developing an award-winning course, noted for its community support and involvement. Working with multiple nonprofits and city agencies, Heidi and her team ensure the race meets or exceeds sustainable (green) sporting practices, exceeds national guidelines for medical response, is accessible to all levels of runners, regardless of age or ability, and delivers patronage to Fort Worth retail, cultural, and hospitality venues. Heidi serves as a board member for Running USA and speaks regularly at industry conferences on race merchandizing, virtual run management, and youth programming.

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