Who are we?
Front Runners New York (FRNY) is New York City’s LGBT running club. The club was founded in 1979 and has grown to over 700 members annually. FRNY’s mission is to create a social running community focused on health and fitness that is welcoming to all LGBT New Yorkers.
FRNY offers a robust, inclusive membership experience that includes professionally-coached running workouts, multisport training, social events, and more.
The club is affiliated with New York Road Runners (NYRR) and the International Front Runners organization.
FRNY is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. The club’s activities are overseen by a Board of Directors that is elected annually.
What is Front Runners' History?
Want to learn more about FRNY? Explore our archives!
Front Runners New York was founded October 1979 by Malcolm Robinson and named for Patricia Nell Warren's novel The Front Runner, published in 1974.
In the late 1970s and early 1980s, the club was still in its infancy, with only 35 members on its roster for the first year. It took Malcolm Robinson's and Steve Gerben's leadership to stabilize and build its membership to more than 400 by 1985. Front Runners members Harold Brueland and David Pitches were the first Front Runners members to race for team FRNY at the New York City Marathon in 1977. Guy Zelenak and the early FRNY boards kept very good records, and photos of club members and other materials from that time are now part of the FRNY archives. The LGBT community at the time recognized the club's members as runners first, and being LGBT second.
From the late 1980s to the 1990s, the AIDS epidemic greatly affected the club's members. Past FRNY presidents, board members, runners, and walkers were all affected by the disease. Despite that fact, FRNY members still competed at the first and second Gay Games both held in San Francisco. The club also continued to be the only running club in New York City to host its own road race in Central Park (the annual Pride Run) and the only running club to volunteer at a water station (mile 24) in the New York City Marathon.
Today, the club is proud of its diverse members. Even with the addition of new traditions (Awards Night, Cross-Country Meet, Indoor Track Meet, Indoor Triathlon), the club still cherishes and continues annual traditions (Pride Run, mile 24 water station) that commenced over 25 years ago.
Meet your Front Runners
2018 Board of Directors
2018 Board of Directors
Dan Ferguson is the president of Front Runners New York. He previously served as board director at large, race captain, long run coordinator, multisport coordinator, and history and archives committee member. He was race co-director of the Brooklyn Pride Run in 2014 and 2015. A multiple-time winner of the club's Achievement and Participation Awards, Dan was the 2015 Front Runner of the Year and previously won the Sue Foster Long Distance Runner of the Year and Multisport Athlete of the Year Awards. He is the two-time winner of the Polish Constitution Day 5-Mile Trail Race.
Jason has been a proud member of Front Runners New York since 2011. Before FRNY, the farthest he had run was 7 miles. Since joining he has finished 10 marathons and two triathlons, competed at Gay Games 9, won four participation awards, and met some of his closest friends. Prior to stepping up to the board as Treasurer, he served as Pride Run Race Director from 2013-2016 as well as a member of the Membership committee since 2012.
Brittany has been a member of FRNY for three years. She joined the club looking for a group of runners and coaching to help her get through her first NYC Marathon. She completed her first New York in 2015 and has since ran two more marathons.
To her, Front Runners is certainly more than just a running club and she is excited to continue to give back to the club by being the 2018 Secretary.
I have been a member of FRNY since October 2015. In that time, I have been passionate about being involved, not only in racing, but in club activities and volunteer opportunities. I am honoured to accept this appointment to Director at Large for the remainder of 2017, and will serve my duties in the best interest of the club and its members
Curtis returned to running in 2013. Running the streets of New York City was less than desirable, but Central Park was a perfect location. Being introduced to Front Runners created an opportunity to expand and grow his passion for running. Never having run further than 2 miles, Curtis has now completed 11 half marathons and 6 full marathons. Curtis has received the participation award both years he was active in the club along with a President's Award. Curtis has been a race captain and a member of the Gay Games Committee. Curtis is excited and honored to be chosen to serve this club and all of it's members in 2018.
Director At Large
Faith has been a member of Front Runners for more than 10 years and in that time has completed 5 marathons, many half marathons and innumerable other races wearing FRNY colours. She has handed out many cups of water at the FRNY water stations at both the NYC Half and full Marathons. A winner of the FRNY female track athlete of the year in 2015, Faith is now enjoying running at a more stately pace these days, but happy to continue representing the club.
Director At Large
Isaac has been a member of Front Runners for a little over a year. He is always proud to represent this club and am excited to step up and serve on the board for the remainder of this year!