I am honored to run the 2018 Boston Marathon representing the Somerville Road Runners, my awesome running club! I am also excited to fundraise for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI.) I personally have struggled with mental illness and this issue is near and dear to me. Supporting NAMI helps people affected by mental illness through programs and resources, increased awareness of this important public health issue and reduced stigma for those who are directly affected including family and loved ones. Established in 1979, NAMI is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization with a mission to “build better lives” for those affected by mental illness. They have grown into an association of local affiliates, state organizations and volunteers across the country providing support and information through free programs and classes. They also run a toll free help line, advocate and shape national public policy and hold public awareness events. I am also running the Boston Marathon as a tribute to my dad, John Booras, who ran competitively for the Boston Athletic Association in the 1950's and 60's.