Tony Reed Bio

Hometown: St. Louis, MO

Current Residence: Dallas, TX

Profession: Project Management Consultant


Describe your childhood: Prior to high school, bowling was the only organized sport in which I participated. Throughout high school, my secret desire was to be a professional bowler. For about ten years, I attended summer camps from two to four weeks. Living in cabins and tents helped me to appreciate being outdoors. At my high school, it was mandatory that all students participate in a sport two out of the three seasons. Since I enjoyed the outdoors, all of my sports were outdoors. Thus, over the course of four years, I ran cross country, played baseball, ran track, and played soccer. I wasn’t a standout athlete in any sport. However, I was a varsity starter in soccer during my senior year. Our soccer season was during the cold St. Louis winters. Later, this helped to mentally prepare me for the Antarctica Marathon.

Educational Background:

Name Location


High School John Burroughs School St. Louis, MO
Undergraduate Webster University St. Louis, MO


Undergraduate Webster University St. Louis, MO


Graduate Abilene Christian Univ. – Dallas Dallas, TX


Graduate University of Texas – Dallas Dallas, TX



Professional Certifications:

  • Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
  • Certified Project Management Professional (PMP)
  • Certified in Supply Chain Management

Fitness Certifications:

  • RRCA Certified Running Coach

Running Clubs:

  • National Black Marathoners Association
  • Southsiders Running Club (Dallas area)
  • Seven Continents Club
  • Dallas Running Club
  • Marathon Maniacs
  • 50 States Club
  • 100 Marathon Club of North America


Running Background:

I started distance running in 1974. I wanted to avoid heart disease, diabetes, and high blood. I set a life time of averaging about 3 miles per day or 100 miles per month. As of December 31, 2012, I’ve run over 37,300 and averaged about 3 miles per day. And I don’t have any of the aforementioned medical problems.

  • Number of Years Running: 40+
  • Number of Races: 200+
  • Number of Marathons: 126
  • Number of Half Marathons: 20+
  • Number of Ultras: 2
  • Number of International Races: 9

Completed Marathon Goals or Highlights:



1st Marathon


Cowtown Marathon, Ft. Worth TX
Run Around Equator (24,901 miles)


Cowtown Marathon, Ft. Worth TX
50th TX Marathon


Cowtown Marathon, Ft. Worth TX
7th Continents


SafriCom Lewa Marathon, Lewa   Conservancy, Kenya
100th Marathon


Cowtown Marathon, Ft. Worth TX
50th State


Big Wild Life Runs, Moose’s Tooth   Marathon, Anchorage, AK

Other Running/Fitness Goals or Highlights

  • 1987 – Rode bicycle century (107 miles)
  • 2000 – Completed the Texas Marathon Challenge (five marathons in four months)
  • 2005/06 – Ran a marathon on my 50th birthday (Australia’s Gold Coast Marathon) and completed 12 marathons in 12 months with each one in a different State or country
  • 2011 – Completed first triathlon
  • 2012 – Completed 14 marathons in 14 different States


Personal Bests

Date Distance



Event Location
08/28/1982 5K



Plano Pacers Dallas, TX
04/16/1983 10K



St. Paul’s 10K Dallas, TX
11/02/1985 1/2 Marathon



White Rock 1/2 Marathon Dallas, TX
01/11/1987 20 Miles



Tortuous 20 Miler Hurst, TX
12/02/1984 Marathon



White Rock Marathon Dallas, TX
08/28/2005 50K



Iowa Trail 50K Fairfield, IA


Awards & Trophies


Date Event Location Trophy/Award
10/23/1983 North Texas State University (now University of North   Texas) Marathon Denton, TX 1st place, 29 and under age group
08/31/1985 Mesquite Beat the Heat Biathlon (bike 13 miles, run 3   miles) Mesquite, TX 3rd place, 30 – 39 age group
08/30/1986 Mesquite Beat the Heat Biathlon Mesquite, TX 3rd place, 30 – 39 age group
08/15/1987 Texas Instruments Biathlon Plano, TX 3rd place, 30 – 39 age group
09/05/1987 Mesquite Beat the Heat Biathlon Mesquite, TX 1st place, 30 – 39 age group
09/03/2000 Walk of Fame Marathon Lubbock, TX 3rd place, 45 – 49 age group
09/03/2000 Walk of Fame Marathon Lubbock, TX 3rd place, 200+ pound weight division
03/23/2003 Dallas Trails Marathon Dallas, TX 4th place, “Rhino” weight division (205 to   220 pounds)
12/13/2008 KwanzaaFest   5K Dallas, TX 1st place 50 – 59 age group
12/11/2010 KwanzaaFest   5K Dallas, TX 1st place 50 – 59 age group

 Current Running/Fitness Goals: Average 3 miles/day.

What other sports do you participate? Bicycling, swimming, triathlon, and weightlifting.

Favorite Race Locations:

  • USA – Dallas (formerly White Rock) Marathon
  • International – French Riviera Marathon

 Favorite Local Spot to Run: Dallas’ White Rock Lake and Kiest Park

Favorite Motivational Song to Think About, While Running: “Ain’t No Stopping Us Now” by McFadden & Whitehead

Running Mantra: Hills build character.

Running Heroes/Mentors: Marilyn Bevans, Ted Corbitt (late), Frederick F. Davis III, Angela Ivory (late), Donald Arnold, and Ricky Cox.

What inspired you to pursue each of your running/fitness goals?

Seven Continents Marathon Goal

Pursuing this goal forced me out of many comfort zones. However, I made friends for life. Each marathon represented my first visit to that continent. The experiences were unforgettable. My first international event was the Tailwinds Marathon in Copenhagen, Denmark. We were told that there would be no aid stations, sag wagons, race marshals, t-shirts, race numbers, or finisher medals. I was scared to death. The second event was on my 50th birthday, Australia’s 2005 Gold Coast Marathon. It was during this trip that I decided to pursue the seven continents goal. The 2006 Great Wall of China Marathon was the first time that I toured with a group of runners and made friends for life. As it turned out, several of us reunited in 2007 for Argentina’s Fin Del Mundo and the Antarctica Marathons.

I was undecided about running an African marathon in 2007. It would have been too close to the previous international races. However, my girlfriend told me to “strike while the iron hot” and go after Africa. This opportunity may never come this way again. So, I made the arrangements.

As I boarded the flight from Amsterdam to Nairobi, I ran into three friends from the Great Wall Marathon. Kenya’s SafriCom Lewa Marathon would be final continent for three of us. We had run four international races together. The race was held inside of the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy. And the animals would be roaming freely during the marathon. The race was even delayed by 15 minutes while they encouraged a lion to get off of the course.

As I stood at the starting line, I realized that this was the first race where I wasn’t a minority. It was beautiful. As I approached the finish line, I felt a sense of relief. Since the first international marathon, people had attempted to discourage and to prevent me from pursuing this goal.

I returned to my office on July 2, my birthday. My company had decided to have a one-person lay off and it was me. My manager had actively discouraged me from running international marathons while on business trips. Even though, the races were on the weekends, during my own time, and at my own expense. If I had listened to these individuals, history would not have been made. On June 23, 2007, after crossing the finish line, I became the first Black in the world to complete marathons on all seven continents. Subsequently, Runner’s World magazine asked me to write an article about my experience. Later, these journeys were chronicled in my book, Running Shoes Are Cheaper Than Insulin: Marathon Adventures On All Seven Continents.

In 2012, the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture accepted the NBMA running jersey and other artifacts from the history-making Kenyan marathon.

100 Marathons Goal

When I started running marathons, I had never thought about completing 100 marathons. As the sole support for my family of four, pursuing a marathon in all 50 States was “economically challenging.” So, I decided to run 50 marathons in one State; Texas. By the time this goal was completed, my children would be out of college and I’d  be able to travel the world. As I approached 50 years old, I decided to run a marathon a month and each had to be in a different State or country. Achieving this goal made me realize that I could run more than two or three marathons a year.

However, my immediate goal was finishing marathons on the seven continents. The marathon on the seventh continent was my 87th marathon. Some friends encouraged me to pursue marathons in all 50 States.

At that time, 24 States had been completed. So, by default, 100 marathons would be completed in route to completing the 50 States goal. The only question was which marathon would be my 100th. It was decided that the location of my first marathon would also be my 100th the 2009 Ft. Worth (TX) Cowtown Marathon. This was also the location of the NBMA’s 5th Annual Summit.

This was an unforgettable weekend. The day before the marathon, we were in the lobby of hotel when my cell phone rang. It was Ebony magazine’s editor. He wanted to arrange a time for an interview about running on the seven continents. I was excited and stunned. The pre-race highlight was taking the photo below.

During the race, I thought about all of the people who tried to put roadblocks in my way and all of the people who supported me.  I ran part of the marathon with Angela before she turned off on the 50K route. As I crossed the finish line, the members had a 100-marathon banner for me. Charlotte gave me an engraved plate to commemorate the event.


50 States Goal

After completing 100 marathons in 2009, I had decided that I’d just enjoy running. For more than a year, I didn’t run a race. I was asked, “Since you’ve completed marathons in 29 States, why not finish the other 21?” So between June, 2009 and January, 2013, I completed 19 marathons. By many standards, they were slow marathons (between five and six hours). However, the focus was on quantity and not quality. The purpose was to finish all of them before the courses closed or the official cut off time.

Alaska was the final State due to logistics. Fortunately, some family members had just moved to Alaska in January, 2013. So, this gave me another excuse to visit. While making our travel arrangements, I was notified that the National Black Data Processing Association was going to award me their 2013 Epsilon Award for Community Service on August 17. This was the day before the Alaskan marathon. We opted to go to Alaska.

Selected Articles

  • Winter, 2010 – Staring Down Danger, Webster World.
  • Dec. 2010/Jan. 2011 – Marathons for a Good Cause, Ebony.
  • December, 2010 – 6th Annual [PMI Tamp Bay] Symposium “Drives Change”, PMI Today.
  • August, 2010 – PMI New Jersey Chapter – Symposium and Seminar Offer, PMI Today.
  • September, 2009 – Letters to the Editor – Body Talk, Ebony.
  • June 26, 2009 – Runner’s Resume is Global, Oak Cliff People.
  • May, 2009 – Body Talk – Ahead of the Pack, Ebony.
  • February 24, 2009 – 100th Marathon Comes With A Cause, the Dallas Morning News.
  • February, 2009 – Anthony Reed, Black Sports – The Magazine.
  • Spring, 2008 – Staying the Course: Black Marathoners Share Lessons from the Race, Black MBA Magazine.
  • November, 2007 – The Last Word, The Journal of Accountancy.
  • August, 2007 – First Black Runner Finishes Marathon on all Seven Continents, Runner Triathlete News.
  • July 17, 2007 – Tony Reed Becomes First Black Runner To Finish Seven Marathons On Seven Continents, Runners World.
  • July 17, 2007 – Tony Reed: How I Became the First Black Runner to Complete Marathons on All Seven Continents, Runners World.
  • May 18, 2007 – Cleveland Marathon: A Foot Soldier for Blacks’ Good Health, The Plain Dealer (Cleveland, OH).
  • May/June, 2007 – The Antarctica Marathon – The Marathon Texans Loved to Hate, Inside Texas Running.
  • March 16, 2007 – Some Cold Feet, But No Weak Knees – Antarctica Marathon, The Dallas Morning News.
  • First Quarter, 2007 – A Success Story – The Running Man, Texins Magazine.
  • Fall, 2006 – Great Wall Delivers a Great Adventure, Travel News For Runners.
  • Sep/Oct, 2005 – NBMA to Gather at Lewis & Clark Marathon , Missouri Runner and Triathlete.
  • February 28, 2005 – A Brief Chat with Tony Reed, Runners World.
  • January 30, 2005 – Runners Keep Sport in Step with Times, The Ft. Worth (TX) Star-Telegram.
  • April 25 and 26, 2005 – Promoting Healthier Lives & Related Editorial, The Cincinnati Enquirer.
  • March 5, 2004 – Diabetes Hasn’t Caught Up To Local Marathoner, The Dallas Morning News.
  • March 3, 2004 – 50 Was Nifty for Dallas Marathoner, The Ft. Worth Star-Telegram.
  • March, 2004 – featured as “Former Wyman Camper and Counselor” in Cornerstone for Kids campaign in support of Wyman andCampCoca-Cola.
  • Summer, 2003 – “Management Consultant Spends Free Time Running MarathonsWebster (University) World.
  • March 28, 2003 – Marathoner Reaches Goal Before 50, The Dallas Morning News’ Sports Section


Last Updated: September 3, 2013