Meet the Staff

Drew Conner

Hey guys, my name is Drew Conner. I had a very successful cross country and track career during my tenure at Fayetteville High School before graduating in 2004. I attended the University of Central Arkansas in Conway, Arkansas. I led the team there for five years before graduating with my Bachelor's Degree in dietetics in 2009. I want to use my skills and experiences as a runner to help others get into the sport that I love. I also want to use my knowledge of nutrition to help others achieve their weight and health goals whether they be running/walking related or not. Diet and exercise can be two of the most difficult things to do successfully on your own, so don't be afraid to ask what may seem like the most simple questions about one or the other.

Likes: My beautiful wife Alicia, running in thunderstorms, sushi, and driving fast.
Dislikes: Hill repeats and spider webs.

Keri Letson

Hi! My name is Keri Letson. I was born and raised in a tiny little town in Southwest Missouri called Ash Grove. I moved to Bentonville when I married my husband almost 20 years ago. I love this great community we live in! I ran for my high school track team, but stopped running when I went to college. I took up running again in 2008, but it was sporadic. Until I stumbled across a sign-up for this newly formed half marathon training group, administered by Mike Rush, that Bentonville Parks and Rec was starting. I signed up on a whim and ran my first half marathon in the Spring of 2012. After that, I was hooked on running! I've run several half and full marathons since then and hope to qualify to run the Boston Marathon someday! I am so excited to be a part of the Rush Running family so I can pay it forward by helping people reach their running, walking, or healthy lifestyle goals. Stop by the store and say Hi anytime!

Likes: Summer, The Kansas City Chiefs, Ice Cream, and Hot Tamales (the candy!)
Dislikes: Winter, the color pink, eggs, and wet shoes.

Nathan Sellars

Hey there! My name is Nathan Sellars. I was born in Layton Utah, a small suburb located not far from the capitol of the beehive state (Salt Lake City). It is there that I discovered my passion for the mountains, the cold weather, and Classic Rock! I currently run Cross Country at Bentonville High School. I have been running for a little over five years now and I am building up my endurance in order to run my first full length marathon. I began running in the seventh grade at Washington Jr. High school. Since then, I have grown from being one of the slowest members on the team who finished well behind the pack in numerous races, to becoming a more experienced runner who has finished in the top three places of my age group in recent half marathons.

Likes: Classic Rock, English Bulldogs, the mountains, traveling, cold weather, waking up early, and the United States Naval Academy (USNA).
Dislikes: Bad drivers, procrastination, slow or no Wi-Fi connection, leaving my comfort zone.

Stuart Jackson

Hey there, my name is Stuart Jackson. I was born and raised in Jenks, Oklahoma (Go Trojans!). I started running in the 6th grade when I joined Jenks America Track Club. At first, I didn't really get it. It was painful and I didn't really enjoy it. I stuck with it though, and fell in love with the sport and the challenge it provided. I've been running ever since! I ran competitively in middle school and high school and still try to run as fast as I can. I also enjoy spending time doing other outdoor activities such as backpacking and rock-climbing. I worked as a whitewater rafting guide in Colorado on the Arkansas River. I graduated from the University of Arkansas (Go Hogs!) in 2014 with a degree in Business Economics. I like working at Rush Running because it gives me the opportunity to share my passion for running with others. If I could have one superpower, it would be the ability to fly.

Kesley Brown

Hey my name is Kesley! When I was 8, my parents realized that my constant running of laps around the neighborhood was starting to scare the neighbors, so they signed me up for AAU Track & Field. The first couple of years I only did sprinting and long jump, but my coach had an eye for a distance runner, so to distance training I went. After I realized that it was humanly possible to run multiple miles at one time, I learned to really enjoy distance running. I kept running through middle school cross country/ track, and eventually on to cross country/ track at Rogers Heritage High School. Now I am a senior at Heritage, and I have had the honor to experience a cross country state win with my great team, along with two runner-up finishes. Although I don't plan to run competitively in college, I know I will continue to run for the rest of my life!

Likes: carrots, Thor, trail running, PF Changs, mission trips, traveling, getting out of my comfort zone
Dislikes: long runs, ice baths, stepping in water with socks on

Heather Diebold

Hi! My name is Heather. I am from Branson, Missouri where I played basketball, softball, and ran track. I was a sprinter and part of the 4x400 relay team placing at the state meet each year; however, my real love was basketball. I then joined the Southeast Missouri Redhawks, a division I basketball team in Cape Girardeau, Missouri during college. I was lucky enough to experience several conference championships, as well as, two NCAA tournament appearances. Most importantly, I received a degree in Human Environmental Studies and Pre Architecture while at South East Missouri. I have been a part of the Rush Running team since 2011. I now enjoy the ultra distances, and recently completed my longest run yet at 50 miles with the support of the Rush team! I enjoy any type of outdoor activity and staying fit. I love to help other people find their passion for running and a healthy lifestyle.

Likes: Art and design, Nature and being outdoors
Dislikes: Sitting still--

Mandy Ozimek

Howdy! My name is Mandy Ozimek. I added running to my fitness arsenal around 2001; prior to that, my routine consisted of group aerobics classes and light weight training. Since then, I have completed multiple marathons, half marathons and endurance events, including two 70.3 half-ironmans.

I'm not fast, but I get a huge rush crossing those finish lines!!! I enjoy the freedom running provides and the friendships I have made while training. I love hearing about other fitness enthusiasts and the journeys they are on.
Likes: My 3.5lb Yorkie, Napoleon; chocolate; overcoming obsticals; traveling.
Dislikes: Needles and other sharp or pointed objects; flying coach; needing to use the bathroom mid-long-run.

James Reeves

I liked Rush Running so much as a customer and race team member that I decided it only made sense to make Mike & Ali pay me. So here I am. And I have appointed myself the Director of Fun. I’ve been running in some form or fashion ever since I was a kid. Back in the days before iPhones, X-box and the like. You know, when our parents told us to go outside and play. Sure, I’ve taken breaks from time to time (the longest about 10 years) but I always come back to running. Pavement or dirt, road or trail, 1 mile to 50 miles. It doesn’t matter to me. The longer I have run the more I realize what a gift it is. One passed to me from my father. My mission is to pass it on to others. That’s why I’m here. Here are my rules…

1. No grouchy pants allowed
2. Keep it simple
3. Be kind to everyone
4. Believe in something
Stop by the shop and say hello. Just ask for Red Dirt.

John Lamparski

My name is John Lamparski. I also work for the Bentonville CVB and was part of the original group that helped to plan the first Bentonville Half Marathon. I mentioned that someone from our office should run the Half and when nobody raised their hand, I was volunteered. Now, I have spent most of my life avoiding running. Unless I was being chased, you would never find me moving quickly. But during the initial training for the first half, I found a love for running. Now 2 full’s, 13 half’s and countless local, smaller races and I am still going strong. I will never win a race, but I will be the guy in the middle of the pack smiling as he crosses the finish line.

I work weekends at Rush Running and I enjoy helping all the local runners. From experts to beginners, I will do whatever I can to answer your questions and make sure you have fun while you are shopping. Stop by one weekend and say hi.
Likes: Seattle Seahawks, Stand Up Comedy, Travel, Listening to Podcasts and the Seattle Seahawks!
Dislikes: The 49ers, Snow and People that Don’t Laugh

AJ Douglas

My name is A.J. and I started running at 21. My main goal at the time was to lose weight. Fifty pounds lighter, I am still going strong and setting new running goals for myself. I'm originally from Neosho, MO. I moved to Fayetteville in 2012 to meet new people and make new connections. I draw a lot in my free time and I love to incorporate my illustrations into running. This year I helped with the design for the Bentonville Half Marathon. My future goals are to run several long distance races and continue to make many more connections with NWA.

Likes: Brooks, yoga, Mohawks, sushi, sake, art, summer, camping, and coffee.
Dislikes: Taylor Swift.

Megan Dickard

Hey guys! My name is Megan Dickard, and I come from right here in Northwest Arkansas. My love for running began when I was a freshman in high school. I quit the basketball team, and joined cross country on a whim, ever since then there's been no turning back. I love challenging myself to run personal bests in 5ks, and my current best is a 20:53. However I would love to one day work up to a half or even full marathon! I'm currently a senior in high school at Har-Ber High, where I am on the varsity cross country and track team, and have had a very successful career so far. Not only do I love competing in school sanctioned events, but I love to run in local 5ks as well! I look forward to what the future of my running career brings, and the exciting thought of being able to run in college.

Likes: running, camping, food, shoes, my dog, sleeping, America, the beach, sonic drinks
Dislikes: fish, cats

Trae Etheredge

Born during the wonderful month of March in Hog country, I Trae Etheredge entered the world as possibly the coolest guy ever. But of course that could be debatable. Running for me started in the 7th grade and being the slowest kid on the team my future in running didn't look very bright. With the help of a wonderful Christian man named Preston Barrett that barrier of being the slowest kid on the team didn't stand in my way. I managed to run 17:15 in the 5k and run a 50 mile race with my dad at the age of 15. Lets just say coach wasn't very happy that Monday afternoon even though I managed to run a 6 minute mile 36 hours after running 50 miles. I’ve managed to run several marathons in back to back days with a gentleman named Trent Morrow whom is the World Record holder for the most number of marathons in a consecutive year. Why I thought that was a good idea I have no clue. I absolutely love running, it has become a lifestyle for me as should with anyone else I believe that finds it enjoyable. I’m always down for a good run with anyone and everyone. Along side running I enjoy playing my cello at the University of Arkansas. Winter months are spent in the tree stand seeking out the biggest buck in the world, which has yet to happen. Summer months are spent casting my rod and reel trying to lure in that 12lb bass. Anytime your in the neighborhood stop by Rush Running Company and I will be more than happy to talk about running, or anything at all. You may be able to lure me into a few miles too.

Likes: My cello, Ice Cream, Oreos-they are vegan friendly, hunting and fishing.
Dislikes: Cold rainy days, and anything else I don't like.

Megan Williams

Hi there! My name is Megan Williams. I was born and raised in good ole Memphis, TN before coming to Hog country to get my BS in Biology. In high school, I played volleyball and did the high jump in track. When I came to Fayetteville my freshman year, I needed a new way to stay active and counteract my love of sweets, so I turned to running! I completed my first half-marathon in 2012 and have been running ever since. In 2016, I attempted the Square to Square unofficial marathon and got lost (typical) after 22 miles. My goal right now is to keep getting faster and build up to a full marathon (without getting lost)!

Likes: my two kittens (Cheddar and Aslan), my 22 pound cat (Sprinkles), all other cats, traveling, online shopping
Dislikes: heights and turtles

Prissy Etheredge

Hey there! My name is Prissy, that's not my real name that's just what my friends and co-workers call me. My passion for running began when I was a wee tot (12 years old). I haven't looked back since. I currently run for Bentonville High School. I really love all things outdoor, from hiking to hammocking to frolicking in wide open fields. Among other things, I am proficient in French (and one day hope to live in France) and play the violin for my high school's top group. When you stop in, don't be afraid to say hello!

Cami Hedstrom

Hey guys, I'm Cami Hedstrom! I graduated from Bentonville High School, and was a part of Bentonville's cross country and track program 7th-12th grade. I am now currently attending Arkansas Tech University down in Russellville studying Fisheries and Wildlife Biology while also continuing my cross country career at the collegiate level as an ATU Golden Sun! I love challenging myself through the sport, and don't ever see myself growing old of waking up early every day to hit the pavement!

Katie Anderson

Hi y'all, my name is Katie Anderson and I moved to Northwest Arkansas in 2012 after earning my biology degree from Georgia Tech (Go Jackets!). My full time job, taking care of the big cats at Turpentine Creek, is what brought me here. I played soccer and was a gymnast growing up and decided to pick up running in college as a way to stay in shape. I ran my first 5k in 2010 and have been racing ever since! My favorite distances to race are the half marathon and marathon. I work at Rush on my days off from the refuge, stop by and see me! I love to talk about running and inspire others to start this great sport!

Likes: long runs, tigers, Georgia Tech football, summer, my cat, yoga
Dislikes: winter, being cold, thunderstorms

Payton Primm

Hello! My name is Payton Primm, and I was born and raised in Springdale, Arkansas. I began running when I joined my school cross country team in 7th grade, and I haven't stopped running since them. I ran cross country 5k races competitively for four years, three in junior high and one year in high school. I am currently a junior at Har-Ber High School. I ran a half marathon at 13 years old, and 13.1 miles has become my favorite distance. I am almost always training for a half marathon or a local 5k race, and I'm always working to improve on personal records and race times. I love to run, and I love to see people enjoy the sport as much as I do. Be sure to stop in and say hey, I would love to meet you!

Madison Sellars

Hey there! My name is Madison Sellars. I moved to NWA before the start of 6th grade, and as a way for me to make friends I decided to sign up for a sport. I then started running with the Girls on the Run program, and soon after, completed my first 5k. I've done almost every sport you could think of, but running ended up being the one for me. I ran for Bentonville High School on the varsity squad before graduating in 2014. I now run for UCA, where I'm currently studying nursing with a minor in nutrition. I hope to qualify for Boston with my roommate/ teammate after graduating from college! I've worked at Rush for almost a year and a half and mainly work over breaks from school. I like working at Rush because it allows me to be able to help people continue to log miles, as well as help get someone who is new to running to start to enjoy it as much as I do.

Likes: coffee, peanut butter, ice cream, long naps after longer runs, and dogs.
Dislikes: hamstring strains, bad drivers, and folding clothes

Hayden Townsend

Hey guys, this is Hayden Townsend and I'm a senior at Bentonville High School. My running career started in 8th grade when I wanted to get in shape for my soccer team, but it's turned into a passion for me ever since. I run for the varsity cross country team, and I've competed in two state championships. I love the community of running and the friends it helps you to make, while also keeping you fit, and I want to do all I can to help others to feel comfortable running as well!

Coleman Wilson

Yo peeps! I'm Coleman Wilson, I run for BHS and do Cross Country and Track. I'm a sophomore, and I plan to keep running as long as my legs and heart will push me. I've been running ever since 7th grade, and I'm kind of a third generation runner. Both of my grandparents ran and my mom ran. I've run my fair share of different race lengths so, I would love to help a fellow runner in anyway, or help someone start!

Likes: Foam Rollers, First Friday's, and candy corn
Dislikes: Speed workouts in general, Alfredo cheese, stubbing toes

Taylor Johnson

Hey y'all! I'm Taylor Johnson, and I'm from Memphis, TN. I'm currently a senior at the University of Arkansas, and I'm majoring in Agricultural Business: Marketing and Management. I started track and field and cross country in the fifth grade, and ever since then, it's been a huge part of my life. I was team captain for both teams my senior year (2013, lol). 5ks are my favorite type of races, but I'm pushing myself more and more to gain mileage. I can't wait to see where my handwork takes me!!

Likes: dogs, cats, running in the rain, and Blink 182
Dislikes: cows

Caleb Chesnut

Hey my name is Caleb Chesnut. I’m from Jenks Oklahoma which is just south of Tulsa. I started running with Jenks’ Cross Country team in 7thgrade and I have been running ever since. Fall 2017 marks the start of my Sophomore year of college at the University of Arkansas. I currently attend the Walton College of Business as a Financial Investing Major.

Likes: jeeps, dogs, cats, Merle Haggard, Willy Nelson, George Jones, and hunting.
Dislikes: prius, ferrets, the flu, Justin Bieber

Mike and Alison Rush

Mike and Alison Rush started running in middle school and haven't looked back since. Mike continued his running career at the University of Arkansas and has coached at Fayetteville High School and local runners of all distances, from the 5k to the marathon. Alison also ran for Arkansas, finishing her senior year as the LadyBacks' first runner and qualifying for the Olympic trials in the 10K.