26.2 to Life
Filmed inside California’s oldest state prison, 26.2 to Life explores the transformative power of San Quentin’s 1000 Mile Club, in which incarcerated men train for and run a marathon on the dirt and concrete path circling the prison yard. Featuring a post-screening discussion with speakers Dave McGillivray, founder of the Finish Strong Foundation, and Sam Williams, executive director of Concord Prison Outreach. Moderated by WBUR’s Darryl C. Murphy.
Through intimate access behind the walls of the infamous correctional facility, the film confronts the meaning of personal transformation within the greater crisis of the American carceral state.
For the men who take their places at the starting line on a cool, sunny November morning, completing the marathon means more than entrée into an elite group of athletes. It’s a chance to be defined by more than their crimes. Cheering them on are a small staff of volunteer coaches, veteran marathoners who train with the runners throughout the year. The bonds they forge on the track create a community that transcends prison politics and extends beyond the prison walls as members are released.
About The Speakers
Running legend Dave McGillivray has increased the self-esteem of millions of people through his work as an entrepreneur, philanthropist, motivational speaker, author, and athlete. Dave is best known for his athletic feats including his 80-day trek across the United States, running the 3,452 miles from Medford, Ore., to Medford, Mass. in the summer of 1978 to benefit the Jimmy Fund. In addition, he’s received great acclaim for directing or consulting on more than 1,400 events throughout the world including the Boston Marathon, the Olympic Marathon trials, and the Olympic Games.
Mr. Sam Williams has been in the non-profit sector for over twenty years. He is a native Bostonian and a graduate from Boston University with a master’s degree in City Planning. Mr. Williams has been instrumental in various local/statewide/national initiatives, including historical racial injustice, prison re-entry, juvenile justice reform, restorative justice, racial profiling, positive youth development, and public safety. He is currently the Executive Director for Concord Prison Outreach and co-chair for Community Advisory for Northeastern University Crime Race and Justice Center.
Mr. Williams was honored in 2019 by the City of Boston (City Council) for Men's Healing Circle work through restorative justice. 2006 by The Philanthropic Initiative as a recipient of the Boston Neighborhood Fellows Award for his leadership and commitment to others. Other honors include The Whittier Street Men's Health Summit 2006 Health Champion, The Jay Bliztman Youth Advocacy Award 2004, and the Action for Boston Community Development Award in 2004 for outstanding volunteer contribution to the City of Boston. He’s an experienced trainer, facilitator and certified yoga and meditation teacher.