(Marlinda Bedonie above)
In 2018, Verna Volker, who’s Navajo, launched Native Women Running on Instagram. Just more than three years later, her account has more than 19,000 followers and she’s an ambassador for the running shoe company Hoka One.
Volker had started running in 2009 and soon realized something was missing in the community – representation by non-white runners.
“As I got more into running, I realized how little diversity there was,” she said. “I remember going through Instagram and I saw the same type of runner: the cute, white, blonde, fit (woman) who just ran Boston, and I just felt like I couldn’t relate.”