Boston Marathon Race Director and renowned endurance athlete honored for his decades of service to the community
BOSTON — Boston Marathon Race Director Dave McGillivray received The Sports Museum Lifetime Achievement Award last night at the 80th Annual Boston Baseball Writers Dinner at the Intercontinental Hotel in Boston.
The award was introduced several years ago to honor a civic or business leader with a connection to baseball who has made contributions that have positively impacted the community. McGillivray joins other greats such as the late Mayor Thomas M. Menino, the inaugural winner in 2014, and Robert Lewis, Jr., Stacey Lucchino, Pete Frates, and Lisa Scherber of the Jimmy Fund.
“We set the bar very high here,” said Rusty Sullivan, the Executive Director of The Sports Museum. “The winner of this award needs to be a true champion of charity. He or she needs to have given back over the long-term. And he or she needs to have done so genuinely and selflessly. Dave McGillivray fits the bill in all of these respects. No one is more deserving.”
Other award recipients at the annual dinner included Boston Red Sox stars Mookie Betts, who received the Thomas A. Yawkey Memorial Award (Red Sox MVP), and Chris Sale, honored with the Red Sox Pitcher of the Year Award. A complete list is posted at http://sportsmuseum.org/event/boston-baseball-writers-dinner/.
“I am humbled and honored,” said McGillivray. “As a lifelong fan, this might be the closest I’ll ever get to being a player on the Red Sox! But seriously, The Sports Museum and the baseball writers are very kind to do this and I’m so grateful for this award.”
Although McGillivray never achieved his childhood dream of playing second base for the Red Sox, his connection to Fenway Park runs deep. In 1978, he completed his historic cross-country run from Medford, Oregon to Medford, Mass., raising nearly $100,000 for the Jimmy Fund of Boston, by running into Fenway Park before a Red Sox-Mariners game and completing a lap around warning track while fans and players stood and cheered. Last August , McGillivray celebrated the 40th anniversary of that event by again running into Fenway Park prior to the Red Sox-Indians game, where he was greeted at home plate by former Red Sox great Dwight Evans, a member of the 1978 team, and team owner Larry Lucchino.
McGillivray’s event management company, DMSE Sports, also manages the Run to Home Base and the Fenway Park Marathon, two fundraising events that take place in and around Fenway Park. As such, McGillivray has run into or inside Fenway Park on eight different occasions.
McGillivray is a pioneer in what is now one of the most important aspects of the endurance sports industry – combining athletics with philanthropy. His feats of endurance are legendary – and all for good causes. A partial list of his Jimmy Fund-related accomplishments in the years since includes: Run up East Coast, 1980 (1,520 miles); New England Triathlon, 1981 (1,522 miles); Martha’s Vineyard swim, 1982 (7 miles); 24-hour swim, 1983 (26.2 miles); and a 24-hour bike ride, 1986 (385 miles). Together with the DMSE-managed events, McGillivray has raised millions of dollars for charity over his career.
Additionally, he has completed nine Hawaii Ironman Triathlons and 155 marathons in all, including the World Marathon Challenge last year – seven marathons in seven days on seven continents.
McGillivray also has run 46 straight Boston Marathons, including the last 31 at night after completing his duties directing the world-famous race. He recently completed his annual birthday run – running his age in miles – and now has done so every year since age 12.
McGillivray, who lives in North Andover, Mass., is known as an inspirational speaker who gives talks to schoolchildren and a variety of groups throughout the country. He just published a children’s picture book called “Dream Big”, about his first attempt at running the Boston Marathon and based on his 2006 autobiography, “The Last Pick”, which intimately recounts the mental and physical obstacles McGillivray faced that led to his 1978 cross country run. His story has inspired countless people to reach their own goals. And in 2019, McGillivray will launch his second children’s illustrative book titled “Running Across America: A True Story of Dreams, Determination, and Heading for Home”, which chronicles his 1978 run. Proceeds from the new book will benefit the Jimmy Fund.
McGillivray also has a story to tell about his health. In the fall of 2013, he was diagnosed with coronary heart disease and went public about it, urging others like him to get checkups and know that “being fit doesn’t mean being healthy.” That health scare prompted McGillivray to change his diet, eliminate stress and rededicate himself to fitness. He lost about 25 pounds and lowered his cholesterol level by more than 100 points, reversing his coronary disease by almost 50 percent. Ultimately, genetics won out and last October he underwent triple bypass surgery – but he was back running by December.
About the Sports Museum
In conjunction with the Boston Chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA), The Sports Museum is hosting the 80th annual Boston Baseball Writers Dinner with current and former Red Sox and Major League Baseball players, executives and other luminaries. The Sports Museum is a non-profit educational institution that has served Boston and New England for more than 40 years. Housed on Levels 5 and 6 of the TD Garden, it has more than a half-mile of exhibits celebrating sports in Boston (and beyond). The Sports Museum also provides character-building, transformative educational programs that help and positively impact at-risk kids throughout the city and region, including the award-winning Boston vs. Bullies, which has been experienced by more than 85,000 kids over the past five years.
About Dave McGillivray Sports Enterprises
DMSE Sports is a full-service event-management organization, providing a full range of event and race production, management, and consulting services to support events of all sizes. Dave McGillivray and his team at DMSE Sports are responsible for the technical and logistical aspects of more than 30 races and walks per year. From overseeing organizing committees to working with local officials and handling registration, credentialing, lead vehicles, and course set up, DMSE Sports does it all. The firm has produced more than 1,000 events since opening its doors in 1981 and serves clients throughout the United States. Find more information at www.dmsesports.com.