Awards presented in a variety of special categories, including Achilles Athlete of the Year, Joe Kleinerman Award, Ted Corbitt Dedicated Athlete of the Year and Team Spirit Award

New York, February 3, 2023 — Harbert Okuti of Westchester Track Club, Grace Kahura of, and Jacob Caswell of Front Runners New York were honored as the Fred Lebow Runners of the Year at New York Road Runners’ (NYRR) Club Night at the Manhattan Center on Thursday, February 2. The awards were given to the top man, woman, and non-binary runners who have consistently exhibited the most superior performances over a variety of races and distances, are NYRR members, and have completed at least six fully scored NYRR races during the last year.

NYRR Club Night has been an NYRR tradition since 1980 and returned for the first time in-person since 2020. The night featured an awards ceremony honoring the top-scoring teams in the NYRR club points series, the best age-group performers of the year, and special award winners. The awards committee is comprised of NYRR staff members and representatives from the local running community.

“Our local run clubs are the cornerstone of our running community, and our NYRR Club Night was an outstanding way to celebrate their achievements from the past year,” said Rob Simmelkjaer, CEO of NYRR. “Congratulations to Harbert, Grace, and Jacob, and our entire running community for inspiring us all with another tremendous year on the roads.”

In 2022, Caswell won 13 NYRR races in the first year the organization offered awards and prize money for the non-binary category, winning the new division at all three marquee races: the United Airlines NYC Half, RBC Brooklyn Half and TCS New York City Marathon.

Okuti won five NYRR races – NYRR Fred Lebow Half Marathon, NYRR Manhattan 10K, Gridiron 4M presented by The FLAG Art Foundation, NYRR Queens 10K, Front Runners New York LGBT Pride Run 4M, and New Balance Bronx 10M – in addition to finishing as the runner-up at the RBC Brooklyn Half.

Kahura won three NYRR races – the Italy Run by Ferrero 4M, Achilles Hope & Possibility 4M and Front Runners New York LGBT Pride Run 4M, and finished in the top 20 at both the TCS New York City Marathon and RBC Brooklyn Half.

The following Special Awards were also presented at NYRR Club Night:

·       Achilles Athlete of the Year: Raymond Murphy

Presented to an athlete with a disability whose dedication, perseverance, enthusiasm, and athletic success inspire all Achilles members to pursue their goals.

·       Joe Kleinerman Award: Chialin Ani Wu

Presented in recognition of outstanding and inspiring community service.

·       Team Spirit Award: Dyckman Run Club

Presented to the team whose members show their spirit by participating in NYRR weekly races, volunteering with NYRR during the year, and cheering for teammates in the TCS New York City Marathon.

·       Ted Corbitt Dedicated Athlete of the Year: Al Shabana

Presented to an NYRR member who ran the most miles at NYRR races in 2022.

The complete list of NYRR Club Night winners can be found here.

NYRR works with approximately 100 local running clubs during the year through its quarterly Club Council meetings, and encourages competition among clubs at NYRR races, many of which are scored and designated as club points races.

About New York Road Runners (NYRR)

NYRR’s mission is to help and inspire people through running. Since 1958, New York Road Runners has grown from a local running club to the world’s premier community running organization. NYRR’s commitment to New York City’s five boroughs features races, virtual races, community events, free youth running initiatives and school programs, the NYRR RUNCENTER featuring the New Balance Run Hub, and training resources that provide hundreds of thousands of people each year with the motivation, know-how, and opportunity to Run for Life. NYRR’s premier event is the TCS New York City Marathon. Held annually on the first Sunday in November, the race features a wide population of runners, from the world’s top professional athletes to a vast range of competitive, recreational, and charity runners. To learn more, visit