Be Bone Strong

| BHOF in the News, Osteoporosis in the News, Press Releases

The National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF), the leading bone health organization in the U.S., was named an Official Charity Partner of the 2018 TCS New York City Marathon. The race will take place on Sunday, November 4, 2018. For its inaugural team, NOF has secured five women over the age of 40 to join its Be Bone Strong team, highlighting the importance of bone health in active aging.

“NOF is thrilled to be named as an official charity partner of the 2018 TCS New York City Marathon,” said Barbara Hannah Grufferman, NOF Trustee, Bone Health Ambassador and team captain. “The TCS New York City Marathon provides a unique platform for our dedicated runners to pursue their goals while raising awareness for causes that are close to their hearts. We are proud to support them on their journey to the iconic finish line as they raise funds to help NOF improve patient care, support those who have broken bones due to osteoporosis, and educate the public to prevent osteoporosis and broken bones and promote strong bones for life.”

More than two million broken bones are caused by osteoporosis in the United States each year. Studies show that half of all women over the age of 50 (and a quarter of men) will break a bone due to osteoporosis in their lifetime. NOF hopes the high-level exposure provided by the TCS New York City Marathon will raise awareness about how vital bone health is to a healthy, active lifestyle as you age.

As the Be Bone Strong team captain, Ms. Grufferman, 61, a nationally recognized advocate for positive living and an avid marathoner, will provide guidance and support to the five women selected to receive NOF’s official entries. The women who have committed to crossing the finish line and raising important funds for NOF include:

  • Christina Cuevas Albert, 51, lives in Washington State and is excited to tackle her first marathon. A busy wife and mother, Christina has run many half marathons and views being part of the Be Bone Strong team as an opportunity to support an important cause while running in one of the biggest races in the world. Running alongside her friend and neighbor Marci (see below) makes it even more special!
  • Gina Cefalu, 50, will be traveling the farthest to be part of the Be Bone Strong team. A realtor from California, Gina decided to make participation on the Be Bone Strong team her 50th birthday celebration. Gina’s grandmother suffered from osteoporosis and she is aware that hereditary is a major risk factor for the disease. Gina intends to embrace getting older by staying fit and Bone Strong!
  • Audrey Matteson, 58, is a retired pharmacist living in New Hampshire. As a healthcare professional, Audrey is aware of the devastating impact osteoporotic fractures can have on one’s life. She also has low bone mass, which puts her at higher risk for developing osteoporosis and fracturing. Audrey is happy to be part of the Be Bone Strong team, running her first marathon, and highlighting the importance of maintaining strong bones as we age.
  • Marci Spence Peterson, 44, intends to check an item off her “bucket list” when she crosses the finish line in New York. A physical therapist from Washington State, Marci leapt at the chance to join her friend and neighbor, Christina, as part of the Be Bone Strong inaugural team. Marci wants to be an example for her children of healthy, active aging and raise awareness about osteoporosis and building and maintaining strong bones at every age.
  • Gail Woodham, 65, has been a runner her whole life, but didn’t begin long distance running until she was 52. She is now an expert marathoner having completed seven full marathons and 9 half marathons to date! She’s experienced the thrill of crossing the finish line in New York four times already and can’t wait to do it again in November. Gail knows that many women her age are not aware of the importance of getting a bone density test and need to make bone health a priority to stay independent and active. She’s happy to be an example of what positive aging looks like and encouraging others to do the same.

In addition to the amazing women listed above, NOF has grown its team by two more! Chris Marhula and Janice Small secured their own entry into the TCS New York City Marathon and have joined the Be Bone Strong team to support NOF’s mission.

  • Chris Marhula, 62, lives in New York, NY, and is thrilled to be running her first marathon in her hometown alongside her friends and Be Bone Strong teammates, Christine and Gina (noted above). Chris knows that osteoporosis is not only a women’s disease, as her dad was diagnosed with it. She is running the marathon in honor of her parents and to inspire others to be bone strong. Chris, an administrator for a renowned lab at a biomedical research institution, is setting an example for others by scheduling her first bone density test to get a baseline reading on her own bone health!
  • Janice Small, 61, is a medical technologist living in Connecticut. Upon crossing the finish line in November, she will complete her 21st marathon overall and her third marathon in New York! Janice is interested in raising awareness about osteoporosis because she has been diagnosed with low bone mass after having her thyroid removed. Janice began running in 2009 to be active and healthy and she hopes to inspire other women to do the same.

If you have a guaranteed entry to the 2018 TCS NYC Marathon and would like to contribute to NOF’s fundraising efforts, we would be honored to have you! Please visit our CrowdRise page to support our current team members or to join our team –

“We are proud to welcome the National Osteoporosis Foundation to our official charity partner program for the 2018 TCS New York City Marathon,” said Christine Burke, vice president of runner products and services for New York Road Runners. “Participants in our official charity partner program are able to reach their goal of running 26.2 miles across New York City while directly impacting causes that are important to them through their fundraising efforts. We are inspired by their commitment and wish them the best of luck as they begin their amazing journey to the TCS New York City Marathon.”

More than 350 official charity partners will be part of the 2018 TCS New York City Marathon, providing thousands the opportunity to run in the world’s most popular marathon. For more information on the official charity partner program, please visit:

About the National Osteoporosis Foundation

Established in 1984, the National Osteoporosis Foundation is the nation’s leading health organization dedicated to preventing osteoporosis and broken bones, promoting strong bones for life and reducing human suffering through programs of awareness, education, advocacy and research. For more information on the National Osteoporosis Foundation, visit

About the TCS New York City Marathon

The TCS New York City Marathon is the preeminent event of New York Road Runners (NYRR), the world’s premier community running organization.  Held annually on the first Sunday of November, it’s the largest marathon in the world featuring over 50,000 runners, from the world’s top professional athletes to runners of all ages and abilities, including approximately 9,000 charity runners. Participants from approximately 140 countries tour the diverse neighborhoods of the city’s five boroughs – Staten Island, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx and Manhattan. Race morning also features the Rising New York Road Runners Youth Invitational at the TCS New York City Marathon in Central Park, with participants finishing at the same finish line that will be crossed hours later by the marathon field. More than one million spectators and 10,000 volunteers line the city’s streets in support of the runners, while millions more watch the television broadcast. The race is a founding member of the Abbott World Marathon Majors, which features the world’s top marathons—Tokyo, Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago, and New York—and crowns the top professional male and female marathoners each year. Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), a leading global IT services, consulting, and business solutions organization, is the premier partner of NYRR and the title sponsor of the TCS New York City Marathon. The 48th running of the TCS New York City Marathon is set for November 4, 2018. To learn more, visit