Canal Run introduces Kathy Johnson Volunteer Award


HANCOCK — It is hard for many in the Copper Country community to think of the Canal Run and not think of the late Kathy Johnson.

The Canal Run was founded by Bob Olson in 1975, and with strong leadership, the race grew steadily. After a few years, Olson contacted Ken Seaton, president of D&N Bank, to convince him to sign on to sponsor and support the event.

This is where Johnson came in.

She worked at D&N bank, eventually retiring after 32 years of service. In her years at D&N, she became instrumental in the success of the Canal Run.

She was always a positive, energetic spark with a “can-do” attitude.

“Kathy had such a dynamic personality, you couldn’t help but be fired up and supportive about whatever help she was asking for,” said Race Director Angela Luskin, who remembers some of the very first meetings when Portage Health joined the team.

Johnson served as the co-chair of the Canal Run committee for many years and put in countless hours every year to help organize the event.

She passed away in June 2020. As a tribute to her commitment and support, the Canal Run is introducing the Kathy Johnson Volunteer Award.

Each year, a volunteer that stands out will be selected, in turn receiving a $100 Keweenaw Cash prize.

“The Canal Run would not be what it is today without Kathy’s efforts,” Luskin said. “This award is a way for us to remember her and all she did for this great community event.”

If you are interested in volunteering for the 2021 Canal Run planned for July 17, please visit canal.run/volunteer.


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