Staff Bios

John Long / Owner

Alma Mater: University of Wisconsin – Madison

Favorite Shoe: All of them

Bio: John owns and operates Fleet Feet Marathon Sports. As a dedicated member of the International Running Retail Association, John is very passionate about his business. He has a lovely family with three daughters and resides in a fine suburb of Minneapolis.

What is your favorite animal? The Honey Badger

Zachary S (email)

General Manager

Alma Mater: Drake University

Favorite Shoe: Asics Nimbus

Bio: This Red Wing native connects all the odds and ends at Fleet Feet Marathon Sports. He is a proud husband and father of three lovely kids.

Any hobbies? Parenting and light yard work.

Gavin W

Alma Mater: Luther College

Bio: With several years of experience at shoe stores and shoe companies, Gavin is a wealth of knowledge. He is the first person to ask about product knowledge and our fit-process.

Any Hobbies? Playing guitar, bass, drums, mandolin, need I go on?

Jack D

Alma Mater: Carleton College, U of M

Favorite Shoe: Adidas Boston

Bio: Jack joined the Marathon part-time staff in spring 2012. He is a Ph.D. candidate in sociology at the University of Minnesota and competes as a member of the Twin Cities Track Club.

When Did You First Start Running? As a youth soccer player in my hometown of Madison, WI.

Chris D

Alma Matter: University of Minnesota

Favorite Shoe: Asics Cumulus

Bio: Chris has been a member of the store since 2012. In addition to helping customers find the perfect shoe, he also teaches high school social studies and coaches track and field and cross country. 

Favorite 10K Road Race? Get In Gear.

Fun Fact: My senior year prom was at Lambeau Field.

Mark P

Alma Mater: Gustavus Adolphus College

Favorite Shoe: Asics Cumulus  

BioMark has been a part-time employee of Marathon Sports since 2012. He graduated from Gustavus Adolphus College with a degree in Geography, where he ran cross country and track and field. He now competes with the Twin Cities Track club as well as coaches cross country at Park Center Senior High School.

When Did you First Start Running? I was always good at the mile run in elementary school gym class and then when I got to middle school, I just decided I should probably join the middle school cross country team and see where it could take me. 

Greatest Sporting Achievement? My final cross country race in college. Everything just came together that day, between the weather, the mindset, the strategic plan, and the effort. I ran a 30 second PR and was fully and completely satisfied with my performance for the first time in my life.

Cate B

Alma Mater: St. Mary's University, University of Minnesota

Favorite Shoe: Asics Nimbus.

Bio: While she works to achieve her goals as a videographer, she is lending us her skills as a shoe fitting expert. We couldn't be happier to have her on board.

When Did You Started Running? At the tender age of 6 with my ma. I got sick of biking along while she ran and just decided to run with her.

Favorite Sports Teams? I am a life long Cardinals fan, which stems from my early years in Keokuk, Iowa.

Elizabeth O

Alma Mater: University of Wisconsin–Madison

Favorite shoe: Altra One

Bio: Elizabeth joined Marathon Sports part-time in 2012 and during the week works in marketing at a community and technical college. She'll happily run any distance from a road 5K, to a 15K at midnight, to 50 miles in the bluffs.

Favorite Running Moment? Friends and family cheering me on and running with me for parts of my 30 mile 30th birthday run around the lakes in Minneapolis.

Fun Fact: I once won a frozen turkey for being the first female finisher in a snow-packed trail turkey trot dressed as a lumberjack.

Hobbies: Eating really good pizza and occasionally writing a race recap or training thoughts on my blog This is How I Run.

Michelle S (email)

Marketing/ Creative

Alma Mater: Minneapolis College of Art and Design 

Favorite Shoe: Anything from Salomon.

Bio: Michelle graduated from MCAD with a focus in illustration, photography, and advertising. She uses her talents as the Marketer/Advertiser for the store. If she isn't in store, you are likely to find her on the trails training for her next ultramarathon! She loves trail running and when customers bring in their four-legged family members in the store! Woof. 

What Has Been Your Favorite Race To Date? Voyageur, it is on one of my favorite trails and the atmosphere is great! It is also one of the oldest running ultras! 

Emily S.

Alma Mater: University of Minnesota

Favorite Shoe: Nike Pegasus 

Bio: Emily is studying biology and business management at the U of M. She is a casual runner who enjoys yoga sculpt classes, and was a dancer for a large part of her life.

When Did you First Start Running? I started running in high school to stay in shape during the dance team off-season.  Ever since then, I've enjoyed running as a form of exercise and to relieve any stress!

Obsessions? The Kardashians, Beyonce, Drake, and my cat Sulley! 



Brandon P.

Alma Mater: University of Minnesota

Favorite Shoe: Nike Vomero

Bio: Brandon is a Kinesiology Major.  His passions are running and the mechanics of running. Brandon lives for ultra distance races, completeing everything from marathons to Ironman distance races. 

When Did you First Start Running? Brandon joined the Marinette XC team his junior in a bid to get in shape for Hockey.  Turned out he was a better runner and the rest is history.

Greatest sporting achievement? Completed the 2015 Ironman Wisconsin. Finished in the top 10% of his age, as well as tenth in his age group. 

Austin M.

Alma Mater: University of Minnesota

Favorite Shoe: Brooks Launch

Bio:  Austin completed both his undergraduate and graduate programs at the U in applied exercise science and specialized in running physiology. When not working at the store he also coaches cross-country and track at Washburn High School.

When Did you First Start Running? Austin started running back in middle school when he joined his high school's cross country team with his friends.

Favorite Day of the Week? Saturdays. They're for the mates. 

Jess A

Favorite Shoe: Brooks Ravenna 

BioJess grew up in Eagle River, Alaska and is currently a Ph.D candidate in history at the University of Minnesota. 

When Did you First Start Running? I ran off and on as cross training for speed skating in my late teens and early 20s, but truly fell in love with the sport in my late 20s when I decided to take on the marathon. I've been running marathons ever since, and am currently gearing up to attempt my first ultra marathon this upcoming spring!

Hobbies? Spending time with my family and my dog Phoebe!

Alec O

Alma Mater: Boston University 

Favorite Shoe: New Balance Fresh foam 980

Bio: Alec majored in economics with a minor in mathematics and hoping to attend dental school in the future. 

When Did You First Start Running? In eighth grade after having tried nearly every other sport. 
                                                 
Favorite Chant? Go Pack Go!

Conor W

Alma Mater: Drake University 

Favorite Shoe: Saucony Echelon 

Bio: Conor was born and raised in Des Moines, Iowa. He attended Drake University and graduated with degrees in mathematics and computer science. Conor runs semi-professionally to support his dream of being a full-time running shoe salesman. 

When Did you First Start Running? I started running in 6th grade.

If You Were A Font, What Would You Be? Comic Sans.

Dan V

Alma Mater: Augsburg College

Bio: Dan lives in Minneapolis with his wife, dog and two cats. He's an accounting/systems guy at YWCA Minneapolis in Uptown, plays drums in two local rock bands, loves seeing new places, and helps facilitate #TCRunChat, a monthly social media chat to discuss all things running.

When did you start running? 10th grade after riding too much pine on football, basketball and football teams.

Which marathons have you run? Twin Cities (2x), Grandma's, Boston, Toronto, Vancouver, Fairbanks, San Francisco, Fargo

Molly S.

Alma Mater: Minnesota State University, Mankato

Favorite Shoe: Brooks Launch

Bio: Molly joined Marathon Sports part-time in the fall of 2016 as a way to meet and work with other runners. She currently works at a physical therapy clinic and plans to study nursing in the future.

When Did You First Start Running? I started running cross country and track in the 7th grade after watching my brother race, and I continued running long after that. But I didn't discover my love for distance running until my late-20's. With several half marathons and one full marathon under my belt, I'm excited to train for more of both in 2017.

Favorite Running Moment? Finishing my first marathon and immediately wanting to sign up for another one!

Ahmed N.

Alma Mater: Augsburg College 

Favorite shoe: Nike Pegasus 

Bio: Management major marketing minor. Made in Somalia, raised in Minneapolis. when he is not working/running, he likes to give back to the community.

When did you start running? 9th grade track, started off as a sprinter by 10/11th grade a mid distance runner. 

Favorite sports teams? Arsenal F.C, Timberwolves, and Vikings. 

Kim Y.

Alma Mater: College of St. Scholastica, University of Minnesota

Favorite Shoe: I will run in anything. I ran around the lake once in my chaco sandals, when I forgot my running shoes.

Bio: Kim was born and raised in Southwest Minneapolis, and she is a licensed social worker, but recently took a break from practicing to stay home with her two young girls. She can often be found running behind a stroller along the river road or around the lakes. She is excited to be sharing her love for running with our community at Marathon Sports!

When Did You First Start Running? I lived abroad in Mexico in 2005, and the cobblestone streets weren't very conducive to my inline skates, so I started running laps around the soccer field.  Those laps quickly turned into half marathons, and then fulls!  The rest is history.

Favorite Sports Teams? I am a loyal Twins fan, even during their rough patches.

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