Lifetime Achievement

Since 1978, many dedicated people have given their time, hard work and countless contributions to Space Coast Runners. Their efforts have led to the success and growth of the Space Coast Runners organization in the Brevard community and throughout the state of Florida.

To recognize these distinguished individuals, the Space Coast Runners Board of Directors along with past SCR president, Marty Winkel established the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2014.

2021

Marty Winkel

At Celebration Night, SCR presented a very special and significant award to a longtime member of Space Coast Runners. The SCR Lifetime Achievement Award has only been given twice in club history and its third recipient was Marty Winkel. Many are very familiar with Marty, yet some of you many not be, so here's a recap of the presentation given on Friday by Brittany Streufert which was prepared by past SCR president, Dick White and good friends Linda and Craig Thompson.

Compiled by Dick & Marlene White...Marty joined SCR in 1982 as part of the merger with the Titusville Run Club. The Goal of Our Founding Fathers  (Bob Lawton, Harold Tucker, Henry Campbell) and Marty was to Create a Race Series so Brevard County Runners wouldn’t have to Travel to Orlando to compete. Marty created the Indian River 8K as Titusville’s Contribution. As the City built monuments around him, Marty changed the Name to the Space Walk of Fame 8K to Continue as the Second Longest Running Annual Race in Brevard County. 

First elected to the SCR Board of Directors in 1984. Marty held that position for 30 years, serving as our President for 7 consecutive years. During his Presidency, Marty oversaw or managed the Manual Timing of over 120 Races – Many using the Infamous Henry Campbell System. Marty created the Golden Shoe Award to Recognize the Hard Work of the SCR Volunteers that were so Instrumental in Organizing these Races. Marty Created the Hall of Fame Award to Recognize the Running Achievements of Our more Dedicated Runners whether they were Our Fastest or Not. Marty Created the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2014 to Honor SCR Members who have Truly given their Lives to Our Sport. 

By the Way – Marty could RUN!! The First Space Coast Runner to Complete a Marathon in All 50 States – A Large contingent from SCR went to New Orleans in February of 2005 for the Grand Finale at the MARTY Gras Marathon that Finished on the 50 Yard Line of the Super Dome. With a Marathon PR of 3:01:27, Marty Completed the Boston Marathon 3 Times including the 1996 100th Anniversary. All of Marty’s PRs came as a Master or Grand Master - Some things just get better with age. Marty Ran an Average of 6 miles a day for Over 20 Years – 44,560 miles – It took a Broken Foot to Give him a day off.

With all of this Activity, Marty still had a JOB! As an Aerospace Engineer, Marty was part of Grumman AeroSpace Lunar Module Launch Crew in the Late 1960’s and Early 70’s, then Transitioned to the Shuttle Program with United Space Alliance until 2011, for a total of 43 years as your friendly neighborhood Rocket Scientist!!  Marty still volunteers at the American Space Museum in Titusville.

During the Corporate Take Over of the late 2000’s, when Foot Racing became a Profitable Enterprise, Marty established a non-profit chip timing company to allow Church Races, Community Races and Charity Races a Low Cost Alternative while providing the immediate results that Runners were beginning to expect. To this day, Marty can still hook you up with good pricing on Medals, T-shirts and Printing. 
  • 4 years as Astronaut High School Cross Country Coach
  • 10 years Timing Brevard County High School Chain of Lakes Cross Country Races
  • Race Director of well over 100 Races
  • Personally Run Over 700 Races
  • Golden Shoe Recipient 1993
  • SCR Hall of Fame 2004
  • Life-Time Achievement Award 2021 
Sent in by the Thompsons who now reside in North Carolina...A lifetime achievement award in running to Marty.  Just wow!  There is no one that I personally know that is more deserving of this recognition.  Marty has provided guidance and inspiration to so many runners throughout the years.  His encouragement and chastisement enabled me to complete the 50 states quest in a timely manner.  I've run more marathons with Marty than any other running friend and along the way he shared his enthusiasm and wisdom to so many others that we met while traveling.  

While "Marty Gras" at the Mardi Gras marathon for his 50th state is something to celebrate and none of us present  that day will ever forget, that is only a small part of his running experience.
Marty worked 1000s of hours on behalf of the SCR and the running community.  He never turned down a request for help and did all of this without expecting anything in return.

From trips to the ER (Panzak and his thumb), to medical assistance (Arkansas death march with Ken Winn & I), to being stuck in Vermont/New Hampshire after hurricane Jeanne - I've got countless stories of Marty.  However, my oldest daughter at the age of 12 or 13 put it best...." Mr. Marty, you are a brick! "  Yes, Sammi Jo, he is the brick  upon which many of us built our early running experiences.   Lifetime achievement award in running.... not for a single achievement but for the decades of devotion to the sport of running and the running community.
Congratulations Marty!  You deserve this!

Marty, throughout your tenure, you have inspired countless runners, walkers, volunteers. You truly worked hard to guarantee the success of Space Coast Runners. As a competitor your accomplishments inspired others to reach for the same. You are a Pioneer. You are an influential athlete as well as someone SCR is so proud to call one of its own. Please accept the Lifetime Achievement Award from current president, Debbie Wells.

2015

Bernie Sher

It is with great pride that runner, Ironman, volunteer, coach, SCM race director, inspiration and cancer survivor, Bernie Sher was presented the second Lifetime Achievement Award on June 6th, 2015. Bernie has always been a man of great integrity and has given back to the running community in many ways. He served as a Space Coast Runners Club Board member for multiple years - 2002, 2003, 2004, 2011 and 2012. Bernie has volunteered at multiple races and is a familiar face at many running events -- coaching and supporting all runners and triathletes. He was vital to both the Space Coast Marathon and SCR’s growth.

In 2003 Bernie volunteered to direct the floundering Space Coast Marathon. He had a vision of turning the marathon into something more than it was at that time. He knew if it was managed differently, it could become a premier event for Brevard County and could gain national notoriety and recognition. As the Race Director, he assigned authority and accountability to team captains who were responsible for various functions (finish line, aide stations, course ops, etc.). He moved the course to Cocoa to run along the scenic Indian River and certified the course through the USATF process. Bernie also added a pre-race pasta dinner at the Radisson in Cape Canaveral and invited guest speaker, Hal Higdon.

The event drew a record number of registrants and netted the club unprecedented proceeds ($10,000). The proceeds put the club in the black financially and provided SCR the ability to contribute $3,000 to the Women’s Center, which at the time was the largest donation ever contributed to any one charity by SCR. Bernie’s efforts proved that SCR could produce a high caliber event and substantially give back to the community.

In addition to the heavy workload of directing the marathon, Bernie started a marathon training camp for registered participants. Bernie's passion to help runners of all abilities accomplishes their goals and his extensive running knowledge resulted in several of his campers placing in their age groups and/or qualifying for the Boston Marathon. One of his campers was the overall female winner at the Space Coast Marathon.

Through running and tri clinics, as well as one-on-one coaching, Bernie has helped scores of people achieve their personal best at races varying from 5Ks all the way to Ironman. Bernie is respectively and deservingly known as “Coach Bernie.” He is a rare gem.

2014

Henry Campbell

In addition to being inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2001 and the sixth Golden Shoe Award recipient in 1996, the inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Henry Campbell on Sunday, March 30, 2014.

Fortunately for the running community, on January 13 1979 on a sunny afternoon Henry and Rosie’s oldest daughter asked her dad to run around the block with her. With about 100 yards to go she started running fast. Henry, a well established 190+lb., 45 pounds overweight couch potato, who turned 45 only 10 days earlier, tried to keep up with her. He didn't stop in the yard like she did…he ran into the house. Rosie and her daughter went in to see if he was OK. “He was lying on the floor gasping for breath, trying to talk while feebly waving goodbye to us”, says Rosie. “When he recovered he said he did not want the neighbors seeing him dying in the front yard.”

This was the beginning of Henry’s running career. After running for 5 months he got the nerve to run in the daylight, he was down to 163 Ib. and Rosie convinced him to sign-up for the 1979 Pineapple 10K. When they arrived, Henry saw runners stretching and warming up and decided to go home since he could never do that. He was hiding behind a telephone pole at the start when the gun went off and Rosie gave him a shove. That was his first race of 580 races through 2001. No one is sure how many races he ran from 2001 to the present. Rosie has gone with him to all but 3 races.

Tom and Dot Pifer, along with Bob Lawton, founded Space Coast Runners in 1978. Henry began attending meetings to learn about running and ended up running the club. Not to take anything away from the early presidents of SCR, but the club drifted along until Henry (and Rosie) took over the presidency of the club in 1980, an office he held for three years. Henry took the club from 70 members to over 400 members. The newsletter went from a single sheet to 16 pages and was published at no cost; SCR joined the RRCA; and with the help of Robin Weaver, started the Space Coast Runner of the Year Series. Henry also wrote a monthly "President's Column" for the newsletter.

It was during Henry's presidency when the club purchased its first measuring wheel. The 5 and 10 mile "Nick Gailey" courses in Titusville and many courses in Brevard were measured by Henry in his "spare time". Henry may have put more miles in measuring the courses we were running on than he spent running. His real test as President came at the Merritt Island Mall 5K. It will go down as the Space Coast Runners all-time disaster race.

The course markings were typing paper stapled to telephone poles that most runners never saw, the length was something over 8 mi., the water stop ran out of cups and water. The fact that it started 11:00 AM on one of the hottest days of the year added to the problems. There were people lying in the streets. Thank Heaven for the ambulances. The write up in the Orlando Sentinel was brutal. They advised runners to stay away from anything associated with the Space Coast Runners. Henry wrote to the Sentinel and said it was proper to blame the race director, or him, but not the members of Space Coast Runners. Henry gave his word that the Marathon would be the correct distance, that there would be water stops and that the course markings would be the best. That is where those signs saying "caution runners" with a picture of a runner on the back were born.

Henry spent all the daylight hours after work getting plywood scraps to make the signs and all the dark hours before bedtime painting them. Red signs for the marathon and green signs for the half-marathon. The day before the marathon he and his crew put up all the signs and painted a red line the length of the marathon course and a green line the length of the half marathon course. The next day he ran his first marathon. After the marathon, the race director asked him what he was going to do with all the club's stuff, the finish line chute and all those signs he made. Henry and Rosie piled everything in or on their station wagon. Henry had all the club's equipment stacked in his garage.

Henry did not have an allegiance to the club as such even when he was President; his allegiance was to the runners and the sport. He used the club as a means to contribute to that cause. He believed that the running club was not a business to make money but was a service to its members. He was the only incumbent president to lose a bid for reelection.

Henry did not sit idly by after he left office. For a couple of years he maintained the SCR race calendar, in 1986 he was the membership secretary and remained a dedicated member of the Board of Directors for a number of years. As he did when he was president, Henry continued to devote many hours as race director and fun run director. He was the New Year’s Eve 5k race director for 15 years, marathon race director and half marathon race director, Space Coast Ultra Marathon director for 6 years and countless other races. I'm not sure if anyone, including Henry, knows how many races he worked as a volunteer.

Henry's most notable and recognizable running engineering success is his unpatented scoring system, the best manual scoring system seen at any race. It is estimated that Henry has made over 80,000 Henry Campbell scoring cards. On the other side of the spectrum is Henry's not so notable, but effective "Keep your head up so you can breathe properly-Roach Clip". This is a device that Henry used to keep his head up during races. The theory is that when you drop your head your air passageway is restricted. By clipping this "roach clip" to his shirt collar and his hair, when his head drops his hair will pull and this should remind Henry to pick his head up.

Henry was known to stop in a race to help a struggling young runner who is walking. Henry would encourage the runner to just run along with him, proving to himself that he can do a little better with a little more effort. Henry didn't mind helping slower runners and didn't mind being beat by the same runner he just helped. Based on these achievements and for the many others not mentioned, Space Coast Runners will always remember Henry Campbell.

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