Run Joe Run

Today, Ninzi-Connect hosted US company, Aspect’s Vice President Joe Gagnon on the third leg of his global challenge to run a marathon on six continents in six consecutive days. 


The long day for Gagnon started at Serengeti Golf and Lifestyle Estate with an address to school children from the nearby Cornwall Hill College. He spoke to them on the importance of perseverance and that they can achieve anything they put their mind to.

After a brief hydration session, he set off on the 42.2km (26 miles) course around the Serengeti Estate. It was his third marathon in three days, on three continents. He started his journey on the 10th of April in Sydney Australia, from there he travelled to Singapore and today landed in South Africa. He will continue on to London, Sao Paolo, and finally finish off in Los Angeles on the 15th of April, where he will run the sixth and final marathon. The challenge was created in order to raise global awareness for the need for youth empowerment.

Host Ninzi-Connect is a telecommunications and customer engagement solutions company that provides contact centre management solutions. It is the South African partner to American based Aspect which is the world’s largest company solely focused on outbound diallers and contact centres. Apart from being the Senior Vice President in charge of Customer Experience at Aspect Software, Gagnon is an avid blogger and youth motivator whose widely-read blog ‘The High-Performance Life’ brings together the elements of how to improve performance across Life, Learning and Fitness.

Martin Haines, Managing Director of Ninzi-Connect, introduced Gagnon, saying: “Joe is a serious endurance athlete having completed five Ironman triathlons and numerous other endurance events. He is also a popular blogger, much covered by the US media, who supports various charitable activities through his blog. The purpose of this unique challenge is to partner with schools on each continent to extend his message of youth empowerment across the world.”

Gagnon’s message to youth around the world is to apply techniques for mental toughness, creative problem solving, leadership and personal effectiveness. He aims to establish a connection with students in each of the six locations.

Throughout Gagnon’s 30+ years in business strategy and technology, his first love and charitable focus has always been on youth. This philanthropy stems from his prior experience as President and COO of Pennforster, one of the largest online schools in the US servicing 150,000 students.

Gagnon conducted interviews en route with journalists keeping up in golf carts and hosted a media conference at the conclusion of his run.

Haines says Ninzi-Connect fully supports the motivation behind Gagnon’s incredible challenge, especially in light of the youthful composition of South Africa’s population and workforce, and the desperate need for education and training at all levels in South Africa.

“We wish Joe all the best and especially back him in his message of youth empowerment. We know South African business is fully behind him.

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