The Law Enforcement Torch Run® (LETR) for Special Olympics recently celebrated its 30th Anniversary at the 2011 International LETR Conference in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Wisconsin received the Diamond Level of Excellence award, being one of 13 programs that raised more than $1 million in 2011. Wisconsin has the 6th Largest LETR Program in the world raising $2,386,592 in 2011 and a grand total of $19,270,049 since the LETR began in Wisconsin in 1986!
Although Special Olympics Wisconsin (SOWI) was delighted by their successful fundraising efforts, the delegation was even more excited to see a local athlete recognized as one of three inaugural recipients of the LETR International Executive Council Athlete Award! A seasoned veteran, Martha Hill of Sheboygan has been involved with the organization for 17 years, competing in swimming, bocce ball, basketball, softball, tee ball, and golf, all while developing as a leader throughout Wisconsin and the world. She currently serves as the athlete representative on the state and international committees for the LETR. Hill feels inspired and empowered by the involvement of law enforcement officers.
“They give from the heart and spend countless hours year-round working to support and sustain the Special Olympics movement,” says Hill. “Many of them have families of their own but they spend hours making life better for the athletes of Special Olympics. I have no words to thank them enough for all they do.”
The LETR is the largest grassroots fundraiser and public awareness vehicle in the world for Special Olympics. Annually, more than 85,000 dedicated, compassionate and volunteer law enforcement officers participate in the Torch Run throughout 35 nations, 12 Canadian provinces and all 50 US states, raising $42,651,200 worldwide for Special Olympics programs in 2011 and more than $414 Million since is inception in 1981.