Chris Forti, Team Coach
Chris joined the Whippets in August 2013 after – literally – running into the Whippet founders on a run in Prospect Park. Growing up in the Boston area, running has always been part of his life: spectating the marathon as a kid, running competitively in high school and college, working in a running store, coaching at various levels including youth, high school and adult and a certified USATF official. While his true passion is the team aspect of cross country, he competes on the road, track and trails at distances ranging from 400m to the marathon. His coaching goals include helping individuals improve themselves both mentally and physically and while maintaining the life/ athlete balance. Chris is an RRCA-certified coach.
Francesca joined the Whippets in 2012. A year prior, while was teaching abroad in China, she ran her first ever race, the Great Wall Half, in a time of 2:30. Since joining the team, she has shaved over an hour off of that time, a feat which she proudly attributes to her Dashing Whippets teammates and coaches. Francesca has degrees in finance and political science from the University of Miami (Go Canes!) and works in client financial services at Bloomberg.
Katie joined the Dashing Whippets in 2012. Originally from Ohio, she earned a B.S. from Lehigh University and a PhD in Cell and Molecular Biology from the University of Pennsylvania. Katie is currently a Research Fellow at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx, where she studies mosquito-transmitted viruses. When she’s not running, you can find Katie enjoying one of the many restaurants in the city.
Matthew Wong, Co-Founder, Vice President
Matt co-founded the Dashing Whippets with Rich in May 2009. Matt grew up in Connecticut and graduated with a BA in Economics at Trinity College in Hartford, CT in 2000 and an MPA from the University of Connecticut in 2006. Matt has been running since joining his high school cross country team his sophomore year. He then had an admittedly mediocre cross country and track career at Trinity. Since being with the team, Matt has completed 4 marathons, but mostly concentrates on shorter races, with PRs of 4:40 at the 2017 Fifth Avenue Mile, 17:15 5000 meters at a Thursday Night at the Races meet at the Armory, 22:56 at the Race to Deliver 4M, and 1:18:40 half marathon in the 2016 NYC Half Marathon. Matt lives in Park Slope, Brooklyn with his wife and twin daughters.
See Board of Directors.
Megan has been a Whippet since 2013. Born and raised in Staten Island, she was introduced to running at the young age of 7, and joined her local CYO track team. Megan continued running for fitness during college. After graduating from Pratt Institute with a BFA in Fashion Design, she went on to work for Donna Karan Collection and currently works for Carolina Herrera. Taking running dedication to the next-level, Megan became a USATF Level 1 coach in 2016 and a RCAA Coach in 2017. She is also currently perusing her VDOT certification to be completed in 2018. Her favorite race distances to train herself and others for are half marathons and marathons. When not racing or planning for races, Megan loves to cheer on her fellow Whippets as they crush their goals!
A committed Dashing Whippet, Patricia hosts many of our team runs, including Thursday night, Central Park, and downtown runs. Patricia is a tireless cheerleader for the team and is dedicated to helping all of our runners improve. With professional expertise in fabric design, Patricia leads our efforts to develop attractive, sensible and comfortable team running apparel. Patricia holds a degree in art history from the University of Washington.
Rich Hsieh, President, Co-Founder
Rich co-founded the Dashing Whippets back in May 2009. He currently works as Lead Software Engineer at Meetup.com. Rich grew up in Massachusetts and graduated with a B.Sc. in Computer Science from Brown University. Since being with the team, he’s completed 5 marathons (PR 3:15) and 4 triathlons. He now resides in Park Slope, Brooklyn where you can find him hosting runs in Prospect Park or hanging out at a local ramen or craft beer joint.
See Board of Directors.
Scott Batten, Team Coach
Scott has been a Dashing Whippet since 2009 and has served as a team coach since 2010. His focus is on helping runners improve at races shorter than the marathon, with a particular emphasis on developing speed at the 5K to 15K distance. Brad Hudson, Matt Fitzgerald and Renato Canova have been the most influential on Scott’s training plans. He is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, and works as a systems analyst for The City of New York
Stephen joined the Dashing Whippets in May 2012. He works as a high school history teacher in Brooklyn, N.Y. Prior to joining the Whippets, running a marathon was on Stephen’s bucket list. Since being with the Whippets, he has completed 3 marathons with a 3:07:21 PR at the 2013 NYCM. He hopes to run a sub-3 hour marathon and qualify for the Boston Marathon. Stephen co-hosts many of the team’s Brooklyn runs.