When ACTIVE introduced its Race Directors’ Sweepstakes to send one lucky winner to the IRONMAN® World Championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, endurance industry veteran, Barb McKeever, won the sweepstakes and received an all-expenses-paid trip, including a VIP spectator pass, to the event. In attending the triathlon industry’s most iconic events, Barb renewed her passion for championing, enabling, and motivating women to succeed in triathlon.
Given Barb’s tenure in the industry, having been involved in the endurance industry for over 20 years as both a race participant and director as well as operating her own events management company, McKeever Event Management, LLC. (MEMRACING.COM), we asked Barb to share her most memorable insight from her trip to Kona.
AN: What is the one learning that you took from your VIP pass experience that will carry forward to your MEMRACING work?
Barb: “I was grateful to meet with IRONMAN World Championship Race Director, Diana Bertsch, for 30 minutes or so. She’s an amazing woman, an engaged mom and advocate for the island of Kona. And as the race director for a race of this size, she has a clear vision, knows what she wants the event to be and what she wants to accomplish. She’s detailed and thorough, very focused on making that vision a reality. I relate to her passion for the vision.”
Many race directors admit that directing a race is more than just another tough job, given the increasing complexity of managing logistics with permitting, securing sponsors, managing city services and a myriad of small-but-mighty details needed to produce an endurance event of any size. For Barb, meeting Diana and witnessing her serenity, stamina, dedication and process in-action has reinvigorated her MEMRACING goal of giving girls and women a venue for entering the triathlon arena and one day competing in the IRONMAN World Championship.